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Archive for the ‘Apostasy’ Category

from Worldview Weekend:

Recent decades have given way to many theologians arguing against the necessity of repentance in conversion and gospel preaching. People might not talk about it but please ask yourself, do they call people to repentance from sin when presenting the gospel in your local church? The evidence is in the silence. Hillsong have been guilty of this for years – they are even guilty according to their own doctrine statement. Brian Houston avoids the subject like the plague and is even willing to change Bible translations to avoid mentioning the word (as he did during his recent visit to Rick Warren’s fellowship).

The wholesale abandonment of repentance preaching really took root at Dallas Theological Seminary (DTS) in the 70’s. It has created a sub-culture of professing Christians who live lives that look no different to the world. It has been a mission field catastrophe and created mass confusion as to why people claim to be Christians and yet persist in bringing reproach on the body of Christ through their lives of perpetual unrepentant sin. The Bible has a name for this kind of Christian – non-Christians!

Without a doubt, Zane Hodges from DTS was one of the leading voices in spreading this poison. He wrote:

One of the most striking facts about the doctrine of repentance in the Bible is that this doctrine is totally absent from John’s gospel. There is not even so much as one reference to it in John’s twenty-one chapters… Since John’s Gospel does omit the message of repentance, are we to conclude that its gospel is not the biblical gospel after all? The very idea carries its own refutation. The fourth evangelist explicitly claims to be doing evangelism( John 20:30-31 ). It is not the theology of the gospel of John that is deficient; it is the theology found in lordship salvation.

This post has been written in order to respond to Hodges beliefs, which are still very influential on the global mission field. I stand with John MacArthur in my assessment that this is one of the defining theological issues of our time and must be fought with unyielding resolve. This article is designed to show that it is the gospel Zane Hodges advocates that is deficient and not even a Christian gospel at all. Following is a list of ten reasons that Hodges assertion is wrong regarding the absence of repentance in the gospel of John.

1. This is a Very Easy Game to Play
I can easily play the same game with Zane Hodges. The word love makes no appearance in the book of Acts. Therefore we should ignore the importance of love in fulfilling the Great Commission and make sure we don’t make it a necessary part of our preaching. A little closer to the issue at hand, I could also argue that Jesus never mentions grace in John’s gospel and therefore we should also avoid preaching or insisting upon God’s grace. Though my comments are sarcastic, these ludicrous ideas reveal a major deficiency in Hodges’ argument.

2. John is Not the Only Book in the Bible This is simple but it is true. John’s gospel is not the entire Bible. The true theologian has to deal with the subject of repentance as it is dealt with within the entirety of Scripture. The 66 books of the Old and New Testaments comprise one canon – not 66 canons!

3. John Wrote More Than One Book John’s gospel is not the only book he wrote. In fact, 1 John, 2 John, 3 John, and Revelation were all probably written later as well.

The word, repent, features prominently in the book of Revelation. It is used to describe wicked sinners who refuse to repent (Rev 9:20, 9:21, 16:9, 16:11). Their refusal to metanoia<!–[if !supportFootnotes]–>[2]<!–[endif]–> means much more than a change of mind because the context in these passages reveals their unrepentance by their continuation in their sinful practices. Jesus also commanded five of the seven churches in Revelation chapters 2 and 3 to repent – Ephesus (Rev 2:5), Pergamum (Rev 2:16), Thyatira (Rev 2:21-22), Sardis (Rev 3:3), and Laodicea (Rev 3:19). John’s context is clear here that the repentance demanded requires outward action – “repent and do the works you did at first” (Rev 2:5).

Although the word repent is not used in John’s three epistles, the concept is both dominant and clearly portrayed. He who perseveres in disobedience and wicked works is described as someone who “does not have God” (2 John 1:9). Those who do good are from God and those who do evil have “not seen God” (3 John 1:11). In his first epistle, John goes so far as to say that God’s children are those who practice righteousness and the Devil’s children are those who continue in their sinful ways (1 John 3:4-10). Repentance was clearly not a concept that was foreign to John, nor was it a subject he treated as anything less than a matter of eternal importance.

4. True Biblical Repentance Has a True Biblical Context As mentioned previously, when Jesus tells the church in Ephesus to repent, He elaborates on His point by telling them to do the works they had been doing previously (Rev 2:5).

5. True Biblical Repentance Results in a Change of Mind that Results in a Change of Action
When John the Baptist preached repentance he commanded his sinful audience to bear fruits in keeping with repentance. He was asked by the crowds:

“What then shall we do?” And he answered them, “Whoever has two tunics is to share with him who has none, and whoever has food is to do likewise.” Tax collectors also came to be baptized and said to him, “Teacher, what shall we do?” And he said to them, “Collect no more than you are authorized to do.” Soldiers also asked him, “And we, what shall we do?” And he said to them, “Do not extort money from anyone by threats or by false accusation, and be content with your wages” (Luke 3:10-14).

6. True Biblical Repentance is Tangible and Humanly Quantifiable
Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him (Luke 17:3-4).

Jesus is clearly implying, in these verses, that repentance is measurable to humans. His command to the offended party is based on the repentance of the guilty party. The offended party has to be able to determine if repentance is forthcoming – it must be something more than a change of mind because it is only the outward change in behavior that is discernable to a human observer.

7. True Biblical Repentance is Inseparable From Saving Faith
Jesus’ death for sins was an act of salvation. To receive God’s gracious gift Scripture explicitly teaches that:

Truly, then, God overlooking the times of ignorance, now He strictly commands all men everywhere to repent, because He has appointed a day in which He is going to judge the world in righteousness by a Man whom He appointed, having given proof to all by raising Him from the dead (Acts 17:30-31).

The Apostle Paul said that; “Godly grief produces repentance that leads to salvation” (2 Cor 7:10a). This repentance from sin and turning away from it is also a turning to Christ in saving faith in order to receive salvation:

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast (Ephesians 2:8-9). And that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem (Luke 24:47).

And how I kept back nothing that was profitable, but have shown you and have taught you publicly, and from house to house, testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 20:20-21).

Some people claim that “faith alone” in Ephesians 2:8 negates the need to repent. But we must remember this hermeneutical rule: Scripture cannot contradict itself – therefore in understanding it rightly, it must harmonize with the rest of Scripture. As we harmonize all of Scripture we can clearly see that sometimes only faith or belief is mentioned, sometimes only repentance is mentioned, and sometimes both are mentioned (refer to the verses above).

By harmonizing all of these (rather than focusing on a single verse) we can see that the salvation call is a call to turn away from sin in repentance and a turning to Christ in faith – trusting Him alone to save us. The turning to Christ (faith) necessitates a turning away from our carnal affections (repentance). Man cannot serve two masters.

8. True Biblical Repentance is a Work of God
This salvation is ultimately a work of God. Both repentance (Acts 11:18) and faith (Eph 2:8) are works of God. We cannot come to God unless the Spirit draws us (John 6:44). We are not saved by praying a prayer or walking down to the front of a church. It is God who saves. It is God who gives us a love for His law and a desire to live in holiness. It does not mean we stop sinning but it does mean we have a new relationship with sin manifest in a love for God’s law and a desire to obey it:

I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules (Ezek 36:25-27).

9. True Biblical Repentance is the True Biblical Fruit of True Biblical Conversion
The regenerative work described in Ezekiel 36:25-27 produces the repentance described in verse 31:

Then you will remember your evil ways, and your deeds that were not good, and you will loathe yourselves for your iniquities and your abominations (Ezek 36:31).

Within its context, this repentance is brought about by the regeneration of the Holy Spirit. As we have seen earlier in John’s epistles, a lifestyle of repentance is the fruit and sign of a truly regenerate Christian.

10. True Biblical Repentance is in the Gospel of John
There is so much that can be said here, I could take up a great number of pages in discussion of this one point. For the sake of brevity I will point out some of the big ones:

And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God (John 3:19-21).

Repentance is clearly included by implication in these verses that follow right on the heels of John 3:16.

Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him (John 3:36).

Notice here that the opposite of belief is disobedience. The belief John describes is clearly a repentant belief. Turning to Christ means turning away from sin.

If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you (John 14:15-17).

John MacArthur drives the whole issue home:

To say that John called for a faith that excluded repentance is to grossly misconstrue the apostle’s concept of what it means to be a believer. Although John never uses repent as a verb, the verbs he does employ are even stronger. He teaches that all true believers love the light (3:19), come to the light (3:20-21), obey the Son (3:36), practice the truth (3:21), worship in spirit and truth (4:23-24), honor God (5:22-24), do good deeds (5:29), eat Jesus’ flesh and drink His blood (6:48-66), love God (8:42 , cf. 1 John 2:15), follow Jesus (10:26-28), and keep Jesus’ commandments (14:15). Those ideas hardly concur with no-lordship salvation! All of them presuppose repentance, commitment, and a desire to obey.

Thomas Watson responded to this 20th Century invention 300 years earlier:

“He commandeth all men everywhere to repent” (Acts 17:30). Repentance is not arbitrary. It is not left to our choice whether or not we will repent, but it is an indispensable command. God has enacted a law in the High Court of heaven that no sinner shall be saved except the repenting sinner, and He will not break His own law. Though all the angels should stand before God and beg the life of an unrepenting person, God would not grant it. “The Lord God, merciful and gracious, keeping mercy for thousands, and that will by no means clear the guilty” (Exod 34:6-7). Though God is more full of mercy than the sun is full of light, yet He will not forgive a sinner while he goes on in his guilt: “He will by no means clear the guilty.

Repentance Properly Defined and Applied
Repentance is clearly important to God. The Old Testament prophets, John the Baptist, Peter, Paul, and Jesus Himself all began their ministries with a call to repentance. Jesus made it very clear when He spoke about a natural disaster of His time where eighteen people died. He said that although they did not die because they were more sinful than others, “unless you repent, you too will all perish” (Luke 13:3).

What is repentance? Perhaps it is better to initially state what it is not. repentance is not reformation. Repentance is not remorse. Repentance is not regret. Wayne Grudem defines repentance as “a heartfelt sorrow for sin, a renouncing of it, and a sincere commitment to forsake it and walk in obedience to Christ.” Repentance is genuine sorrow for offending God that changes us to be more like Jesus.

Jesus said “there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over 99 just persons who need no repentance” (Luke 15:7). Our repentance starts a celebration in heaven. It is repentance that sets us truly free. Free from the fear of being found out. Free from condemnation. Free from the facades that we live behind. Free from guilt. Repentance should not be a one-off event but a lifestyle practice. We all need to live this way because we are all sinners. The Bible makes it clear that we are all sinners (Romans 6:23) therefore we’ve all got stuff we need to repent of. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (I John 1:9).

Heavenly Father, Maker of heaven and earth, Your ways are so much higher than our ways. All that You do is perfect and all of Your ways are just and right. I come to You in the name of Jesus Christ knowing that I cannot stand in Your presence in any other way. I have sinned against You and have no excuse. You know all the thoughts and intents of my heart. I confess them to You. I am not sorry because of the consequences but because it damages my relationship with You. I repent of it, turn away from it, and plead Your forgiveness. I put all of my trust in Your promise that You will immediately totally cleanse me of all my unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). Thank You Lord for the greatest act of love in history by dying for my sins so that I can have right standing with You and eternal life instead of hell. In Jesus name amen.

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Those in the “Emerging Church”movement do not have or see a problem with playing “fast and loose” with the Word of God!  They tend to treat those who have reverence for the Word of God as legalistic and  refer to them as modern “Pharisee’s”

The problem with this is that the one’s who hold fast to the Word of God and have reverence for what it says do not do it so they can put a yoke around people’s necks to try and get others to do what they want irregardless of what the Word Of  God says!

This is what the original Scribes and Pharisee’s did. They abused the fact that the common man of their day could not read or understand what the Torah said! So they reinterpreted the Torah into a set of verbal and written traditions to fit their own political goals!

The ironic thing today, is that the ones who are the actual Pharisee’s of today are those in the “Emerging Church” who are twisting God’s Word to suit their own political goals! NOT the ones who hold to the Truth of God’s Word and have reverence for it!

If you read up on those who make Motion Pictures, they are not overly concerned about sticking to a strict interpretation of an original story, no they want to manipulate it to make it more exciting and fit the goal that they have, it is pure subjectivity on the part of the person who wrote the Movie and the one who directs it!

from Stand Up For The Truth:

Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. ~Eph 5:11

Not surprisingly the movie “Son of God” has created quite a stir in the Christian community.  Before I gave the theater my money I read several reviews, blog posts, Facebook comments and viewed TV interviews of husband and wife team Mark Burnett and Roma Downey promoting their film.  Roma is a familiar face to many and is best-known for her role on the successful TV show “Touched by An Angel.”  Mark Burnett is the executive producer of a string of hit TV shows such as “Survivor,” “The Voice, “Celebrity Apprentice,” “Shark Tank,” and he has won several Emmys.

When I first heard that another full-length feature film about the life of Christ was coming to the silver screen, I was skeptical for several reasons.  First, Mark and Roma are Catholic and I was concerned that the movie would be produced from this perspective; a perspective that in many cases I disagree with.

Second, I learned that Roma earned a degree in “spiritual psychology” from the University of Santa Monica, a private graduate school founded by New Age spiritual and self-help quack John-Roger.   P.J. Miller is not being flippant when he asks:

What do you call someone who is a student of new age psychology and spiritualism? Do you call them new agers? Do you call them seekers? Would you dare call them Christian? Well, if you’re Roma Downey, then yes, you would call yourself all the above. (Source)

Third, a movie trailer shows Jesus asking Peter to follow Him. Peter looks skeptical and asks Jesus what they’re going to do.  Jesus grins and replies “Change the world.”  Well, no.  Jesus never said those words to Peter!  Here’s what Jesus actually said:

While walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Immediately they left their nets and followed him. (Mat 4:18-20)

Jesus commanded  – Peter and Andrew dropped what they were doing to follow Him.  (More on this in a moment.)  Another clip shows a woman sitting in a boat on the Sea of Galilee with Jesus and the apostles during the storm where Jesus walks on water.  But according to Scripture there was no woman in the boat:

Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds.  (Mat 14:22)   

In the movie Mary was the woman in the boat.  But why would they have a woman in the boat when Matthew informs us that the disciples/apostles got into the boat.  Mary wasn’t one of the twelve disciples/apostles – no woman was!

Finally, S. Michael Houdmann revealed in his review of the movie that, “the reason for Jesus’ death and the meaning of His resurrection are completely missing. The fact that Jesus’ death is the atoning sacrifice for sin is not mentioned at all (1 John 2:2).”

As I said, “Son of God” has elicited a great deal of controversy as did Mark and Roma’s “The Bible” miniseries produced by LightWorkers Media, a company owned by them. This “heretical and blasphemous” program aired on the History Channel last year. “We knew when we were shooting,” said Downey, “that the Jesus portion of our ‘Bible’ series was special and we shot much more footage and we’ve re-edited many more scenes into a stand-alone feature film called ‘Son of God.’”   I don’t have the space to tackle the “The Bible” brouhaha.  I will say, though, that several highly controversial pastors sat on the Board of Advisors. They include Rick WarrenJoel OsteenT.D. JakesRichard Mouw and Samuel Rodriguez.  (For more on “The Bible” go to Resources below)

The Son of God?

“Son of God” opened on February 28, so by now a lot of folks have had the opportunity to view it in theatres and many more will have it streaming into their living rooms in a few months.  Naturally, reviews were quickly written, some good, some not so good.  (You’ll find links to the reviews at the end of this piece.) Suffice to say that in a short amount of time a lot has been said about the film.

Many of you won’t be surprised to learn that Mark and Roma asked Saddleback Church founder Rick Warren to help spread their version of the “good news.”   He happily agreed.  “I’ve seen most of the films produced about Jesus in the past 50 years,” said the pastor, “and ‘Son of God’ is the best.  We’re excited Jesus is back on the big screen, and we’re going to fill the theaters. I want every other faith leader in America to do the same.”

So – why would the man who is affectionately called “America’s Pastor” agree to promote a film that its critics describe as outright unbiblical?

Not only did Warren endorse the film, according to the Baptist Standard staff report :

Pastor and author Rick Warren partnered with LifeWay Christian Resources to release a Bible study related to the Son of God movie from 20th Century Fox, which hits theaters Feb. 28.

The small-group curriculum resource by Warren, Son of God: The Life of Jesus in You, is a companion piece to the movie produced by husband-and-wife team Mark Burnett and Roma Downey.

The six-session study features video clips from the movie and videos from Warren explaining Jesus’ teachings and their impact on people’s lives. Topics include baptism, temptation, suffering, death, resurrection and ministry. (Source)

As a Southern Baptist preacher, Rick Warren knows perfectly well that the Roman Catholic Church holds to the view that it is the one true Church.  Thus, any church outside the RCC is anathematized (excommunicated, cursed or damned). The Protestant Reformers held the view that the RCC’s gospel is not a gospel that saves; therefore the RCC is apostate.  Anyone who rejects the true gospel – we are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone – is an unbeliever.  Period.  Warren also knows what the Bible teaches regarding believers going into partnerships with unbelievers:

Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness. (2 Corinthians 6:14)

Here’s the thing.  Not everyone who professes the name of Christ has a true saving faith.  What about Mark Burnett and Roma Downey?  Do they have a true saving faith?  Let’s examine the fruit.

Endorsements

Popular pastor and author Mark Driscoll’s church bought out 3,500 seats.  In 2013 he and his wife shared a stage with Mark and Roma at Resurgence 13.  Driscoll later remarked:

We watched the world premier trailer for The Son of God at the conference, and the footage choked me up as I thought of the millions of people who will hear about Jesus through this project. I am so encouraged by God’s work through this couple. (Source) 

God’s work?

The connection between the Passover sacrifice (Exodus 12) and Jesus as the Lamb of God (John 1:29) is not made. The fact that Jesus’ resurrection proves His victory over death and sin and guarantees a resurrected eternal life for all who believe in Him (1 Corinthians 15) is nowhere to be found.  — S. Michael Houdmann

Another endorser of the film was “Social Justice Christian” Rev. Jim Wallis.  In my column Liberalism created the culture of evil and death, part 3 I wrote:

This man wears many hats.  He is the founder of Sojourner’s Magazine, speaker, author and activist.  He’s also President Obama’s “spiritual advisor.”  This alone speaks volumes.  Rev. Wallis insists that he’s an evangelical Christian even though he has abandoned the biblical gospel for the “social gospel.”  He believes he’s on a mission from God to assist the poor and oppressed to bring forth the Kingdom of God on earth. 

When this purveyor of the false social justice gospel was asked for advice by the couple, he gladly gave it to them:

What won me over to the whole series was the clip about Jesus meeting Peter, the fisherman. In a Washington, D.C., premiere of “The Bible” series a few weeks ago, I had wonderful conversations with Mark and Roma. Mark asked me if they were right to have Jesus say that he wanted to change the world. Those words are not literally in the scriptures, but it seemed to him and Roma that’s exactly what Jesus was talking about. Absolutely correct, I told them both. And we went through the first few chapters of Mathew which demonstrate that truth. I love the clarity and courage of the statement from Jesus in “The Bible.”

Sunny Shell disagrees:

Christ came into the world to save sinners from the righteous wrath of God, which is the just penalty for our sins. He never said He came to change the world. He said He came to transform people by giving them new hearts and new minds through repentance and faith in Christ alone. (Source)

The Examiner listed the names of churches and organizations that distributed tickets for a so-called “Theater Take-Over”:

Joel Osteen, pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston, Tex., who is distributing 8,000 tickets donated by an anonymous donor; Jerry Falwell, Jr., of Liberty University which has more than 12,000 students; Craig Groeschel of LifeChurch which has 18 campuses in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, Oklahoma; Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles with over four million members and Miles McPherson of the Rock Church with weekly attendance of more than 10,000 in San Diego, Calif. (Emphasis in original – source)

In an article that appeared on Fox News, Mark and Roma wrote:

In all our combined years in the entertainment industry, we’ve never seen anything like this kind of grass-roots support for a project. It is truly miraculous. 

So, too, is the unprecedented depth and breadth of those who have endorsed the film. Pastors like Rick, as well as scholars and faith organizations, have graciously supported our effort to share this story of our Savior – though they belong to different denominations, adhere to varying theological doctrine, worship God in their own unique ways.  

Bishop T.D. Jakes of The Potter’s House in Dallas said “the audience will be enthralled, encouraged and inspired.”  

S. Michael Houdmann was not enthralled by the movie.  In his review he writes:

The Son of God presents a Jewish Messiah who is crucified, dies, comes back to life, and commissions His followers to spread the word. But why did He have to die? What is the meaning of the resurrection? What is the message the apostles were supposed to proclaim, and why was it worth dying for? 

More from the Fox News article…

Joel Osteen of Lakewood Church in Houston called it “an epic work that touches the heart.” 

The Catholic Archbishop of Los Angeles Jose Gomez says it’s “a very important movie because it gives us the opportunity to realize God’s presence in our own lives.” (Source)

Certainly there are by now “Church leaders” that are sincerely shocked to find out that they endorsed a movie produced by New Age Catholics.  Here’s more proof from a 2010 article Roma Downey Happy Out of the Spotlight that shows she’s an advocate of New Age/New Thought spirituality:

Says Roma, who lives in Malibu, ‘My kids go to school about a 40-minute drive away. I’m open to the group’s opinion about what we listen to on the way there. On the way back, I get my own selections — books on tape by Eckhart Tolle, Tony Robbins…My husband says I’m so self-realized I’m practically levitating.’

For those who are unfamiliar with Eckhart Tolle, he’s a New Ager.  A few years ago Tolle paired up with Oprah Winfrey to do 10 online classes on XM Satellite radio on his blockbuster book “A New Earth: Are You Ready to Be Awakened.”  Oprah and Tolle took participants through his book chapter by chapter.  Regrettably, a large number of professing Christians took the class!

Human Potential guru and “coach for success” Anthony Robbins once said: “My definition of success is to live your life in a way that causes you to feel tons of pleasure and very little pain.”  Evidently no pain is experienced after completing a barefoot firewalk, a self-empower technique Robbins’ teaches to get an otherwise sane person to walk on a bed of burning hot coals during his “Unleash The Power Within” seminar.  On this video you’ll hear the sound of drums beating and the crowd chanting “YES! YES! YES!” as Robbins whips them into a frenzy in preparation for the firewalk.

More…

Roma appeared on “psychic medium” John Edward’s TV show and allegedly spoke to her deceased mother.  What does the Bible have to say about consulting a medium?

And he burned his son as an offering and used fortune-telling and omens and dealt with mediums and with necromancers. He did much evil in the sight of the Lord, provoking him to anger. (2 Kings 21:6)

Well, it’s apparent that Roma, who says she loves the Bible, is unaware—or doesn’t care–that God says consulting a medium is evil.

Later she collaborated with Edwards by providing a CD to accompany a book he wrote:

Roma prays the entire rosary on the beautiful CD that comes along with this book. It’s quite lovely and gives you the special opportunity and a unique spiritual closeness to Roma to be able to pray right along with her as if she was right there at your side.” (Source)

So now you know a bit about two New Age gurus Roma Downey looks forward to listening to each day and an occultist she collaborated with.  The worldview of these men is as far from Christianity as the Earth is from Pluto.

P.J. Miller sat listening to Jim Bakker introduce Mark and Roma on Bakker’s TV show and recalled “their previous work on the History Channel’s The Bible and how they managed to literally re-write the Bible itself, and presented another gospel message altogether. I was captured by their … aggressive but subtle attempt to portray themselves as ‘believers’.  The sappy spiritual love fest that permeated on set showed me that something was indeed changing within Christianity, and that something was another Jesus being introduced to the masses.” 

Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. (Mat/ 24: 23-24) 

After several weeks of due diligence I’ve decided that “Son of God” is not a film I wish to see.  In addition to the concerns I have included in this article, my research has turned up many more  – way too many to incorporate here.  Most troubling is the astonishing lack of discernment shown by some of our so-called Christian leaders.  The Son of God I serve is best described in the Bible which is the inerrant, infallible, inspired Word of God.  Inspired means that God moved through the writers to convey to those who read it the words He wanted us to hear.  So to change the words that Christ spoke is prideful and wicked.

It’s unfortunate that those who are unfamiliar with the biblical Jesus and see this film will not come away with a clear understanding of His mission here on Earth.

He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. (1John 2:2) 

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From First Plumbline Apologetics:

2 Thessalonians 2:10  “And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.”

Please Note FPA does not endorse or promote any external sites these are for educational purposes only.

Hope Together are promoting another gospel through the Bible Series and another attempt to draw us into the RCC they state leading many in to apostasy, we need to be more vigilant in these last days.

“THE BIBLE is an epic 10-hour mini-series to be broadcast on Channel 5 with the first episode airing on November 30 at 9pm. The series brings to life the dramatic tales of faith and courage in the most widely read book of all time. Breath-taking in scope and scale it features powerful performances, exotic locations and cutting-edge visual effects to create a spectacular television event that will entertain and inspire the whole family. From Genesis to Revelation, THE BIBLE series features some of the most famous stories ever written and some of the most iconic characters.

Make the most of the series in your community or workplace.”

Visit Scripture Union’s resource page for The Bible Bank and The Bible e-book, free resources helping you to engage with the THE BIBLE mini-series.

Check out some of the reviews:

THE BIBLE series is an excellent dramatization of the Bible. It is historically credible and put together with sensitivity and imagination. The producers have a wonderful ability to make you think about familiar scenes in an entirely new way. Helen K Bond (Senior Lecturer in New Testament, University of Edinburgh)

The Bible is the most-read book of all time. It has touched the lives of billions of people across the planet and has significantly shaped history, culture, literature, art, politics and human behavior – and continues to shape the world we live in today. You don’t have to believe the Bible to be affected by it. Roma Downey and Mark Burnett (Executive Producers of THE BIBLE series (Roman Catholics)

The show has been nothing short of a sensation, watched by millions of people across the world. To have it on Channel 5 is incredibly exciting – these are stories that can’t fail to draw you in. Marie-Claire Dunlop (Acquisitions and Channel Manager at Channel 5)

Attempting to depict the whole span of the biblical narrative from Genesis to Revelation is a bold undertaking. THE BIBLE series pulls it off. It has paid very close attention to the text but at the same time imagined what it might have felt like for the different characters depicted.Paula Gooder (Canon Theologian of Birmingham and Guildford Cathedrals) (This person does not know their bible)

What exactly does the Bible Miniseries Teach and who are the Spiritual Advisers Behind The Bible that Hope Together and Scripture Union are promoting ?

[1] Source Beginningandend.com

History Channel The Bible mini-series | Basphemy and innacurate portrayal.

Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. – Matthew 7:15-18

“We weren’t qualified to teach the Bible, but we knew plenty of people who were,” – The Bible mini-series co-creator Mark Burnett, speaking of the panel of spiritual advisors who helped make the mini-series.

A quick look at the Board of Advisors on The Bible Miniseries and it becomes quite obvious that it was bound to contain heretical portrayals of the Scriptures. Prosperity Gospel preacher T.D. Jakes, Rick Warren of Saddleback Church and Joel Osteen of Lakewood Church, the largest church in the United States are the three most prominent names. AsBeginning and End has detailed in past articles, all three pastors teach Unbiblical, New Age, false doctrines. In our article on T.D. Jakes we showed that in addition to preaching the money-focused prosperity Gospel, he also has yoked with New Age promoter Oprah Winfrey. Joel Osteen preaches a message of New Age mysticism that can be found in manybooks and websites on witchcraft, while Rick Warren has been a major promoter of a one-world religion that merges other faiths with Christianity.

Craig Groeschel of LifeChurch.tv, which is famous for its rendition of “Gangsta’s Paradise”during Sunday service is also on the board in addition to a number of Catholic advisors as well. What all these people have in common is teaching doctrines that are not found in the Bible and often contradict the Word of God. As The Lord Jesus Christ explained in the passage above, if the spiritual foundation of a mini-series is filled with heretical, New Age pastors, the “fruit” of the mini-series will be questionable. . . . .

Read the full article here.

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from Lighthouse Trails Research:

By Roger Oakland

The following news item and video clip reveals how far the ecumenical movement has gone and how close we are to the unification of Rome with “Charismatic evangelicals” and eventually all religions. This is something that Understand The Times has been predicting for some years as the present Pope Francis and the last two Popes, Pope Benedict and Pope John Paul have been active in promoting the New Evangelization.

The purpose of the New Evangelization is to promote the Roman Catholic gospel by reaching out to all religions as well as the separated brethren and introducing them to the Eucharistic Christ.

Evangelicals who believe there will be a great revival (rather than a great apostasy) in the last days centered around the outpouring of the Holy Spirit are candidates for this delusion. Eventually all religions and a false Christianity will form the counterfeit bride also called the harlot. This will happen as the result of the “lying signs of wonders”.

So-called evangelical Bible believing Christians who fall for the Pope’s call for unity will become members of the One World Religion that prepares the way for the antichrist. Roman Catholics promote that the outpouring of the “Holy Spirit” in the last days will bring about unity of religions for the cause of peace. They say that “Mary” is the one responsible for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. They say that the “Eucharistic Reign of Jesus” will soon be established and the “Kingdom of God will be established here on earth with Rome as the headquarters. “Kingdom Now” evangelicals like Copeland and his followers are more than ready to follow the Pope and his plan.

Also, remember that Pope Francis is a Jesuit. The Jesuit plan is to reunite “Christianity” by declaring that the Reformation was not valid and that the Pope is the Head of the Church.

Christians who have discernment and understand what is happening because of insight from their knowledge of the scriptures will be labeled as troublemakers and persecuted for refusing to accept this final delusion.

The return of Jesus Christ is at hand.

February 21 – Pope Francis and the Future of Charismatic Christianity

Article: One World Religion

A recent meeting of ministers associated with the prosperity-preaching Word of Faith branch of charismatic Christianity received a surprise announcement: Pope Francis had sent a message to the conference. It was something of a historic moment.

Beginning around the thirty-minute mark of the above video, Francis speaks in Italian and English subtitles are provided at the bottom. As part of his greeting, the pope chose to highlight two themes, his joy at their desire to worship together in prayer to the Father for the Spirit to come and his yearning for Christians to become one again.

Francis described the current state of Christianity as one of separated families, by which he meant both biological families and the family of God. It was not lost on the Holy Father that the fractures in Christianity are also fractures between individuals. He asks, “Who is to blame for this separation?” and answers, “We all share the blame. We have all sinned.” Such a statement expresses the fraternity Francis wishes to restore, nothing more, nothing less. He went on to say that his desire is for this separation to end and a communion to begin again.

Click here to read this entire article and to see the video. Please watch this video using the utmost discernment. You will see how far the evangelical church has fallen.

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An update from TruthKeepers: Is Roma Downey a New Age Adherent?

also see: The Menace of the Religious Movie by A.W. Tozer

I want to make clear that the article is not saying that Roma Downey and Lightworkers Media are officially associated with or part of lightworkers.org, which is based in Australia.

What the article is saying and which was made clear at TruthKeepers is that Roma Downey shares some of the same New Age beliefs as are espoused on the lightworkers.org website.

Roma mixes a great deal of new age beliefs (“Leaven”) with the pseudo Biblical messages in the lightworkers media productions.

Roma was also on the cover of OM Times, I would encourage everyone to read up on what OM times magazine publishes and what the general beliefs are of those that the magazine includes in its publication

I would also encourage everyone to read up on what the “OM” in the magazines title means.

If you also want to find out more of what Roma Downey believes you can read her interview here at the online edition of OM Times pages 24-29.

“She is a recent graduate from the The University of Santa Monica with a Masters in Spiritual PsychologyPage 27 of  the magazine and interview

reblogged from a Facebook post by Truthkeepers:


sonThe image on the left is Sananda. He is frequently channeled by new agers and he is a real spirit. He is the Jesus that the Lightworkers are promoting.

The production company that made the “Son of God” movie is called Lightworkers Media. If you pray to receive the Lightworkers’ Jesus at the end of “Son of God,” this is the guy who will answer your prayer.

The link below is to just one chapter in “The New Scriptures,” written by him through one of many mediums who channel him. As you can see, he adds to scripture, promotes the love of Self (with a capital S) before the love of God or others, and derides “all the major religions.” He says, “It is time to put an end to the self-loathing and despair which has been taught by all the major religions in some form.” This is what he will lead you to believe if you accept him into your heart.

He says, “There is no vengeance, no punishment nor any threat of disapproval or any other dark judgment in God’s Love. This is the mythology of the past, and it is a misunderstanding of what God feels toward his/her children.” He strips God of His holiness and even attempts to prime us for goddess worship.

He states, “I AM Love because I am God, just as you are.” Never mind what Jesus said in John 8:23. “And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.”

He urges us to use our own “God” power. “All can manifest the Dream of their Hearts if they only have Faith in their own power.”

He teaches reincarnation, “This is what you have lived and died for in many past lifetimes, Dear Ones,” using references from the Bible. “You are indeed at the threshold of the Promised Land.”

He then reveals, clearly, his teaching that you are God. “It is in turn fueled by the Love of your Higher Self, God.” (This is a teaching directly from satan. Isaiah 14:14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.)

I channeled Sananda when I was a Lightworker. And he was one of the spirits who tried to torture me after I renounced occultism and turned to Jesus.

This is the Jesus Lightworkers believe in. And this is the Jesus they want YOU to believe in. You can be sure that a movie about Jesus is going to contain subtle depictions of Sananda.

Sananda is not Jesus. He is a demon. And the movie, “Son of God” was produced by people who serve that demon.

Here is the text that the above quotes came from

One website that features this exact picture of Sananda

Here is the production company that made the movie “Son of God.”

Here is Roma Downey’s Facebook page, listing Lightworkers Media as her production company

Also, if you check my comments below this picture you will see that I am not the only ex-occultist turned Christian who remembers this picture of Sananda.

Can God use a movie like this to spread the gospel? Of course He can. He can use psychics too. He used me to encourage my clients to read the Bible before I closed my business and gave my life to Him.

But this doesn’t mean we should start promoting psychics or that I should go back into business. Matthew 7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

The enemy is defeated by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimonies. Not by movies made by people who hate Christianity.

Roma Downey on OM Times magazine

The purpose and mission of Lightworkers:

Roma Downey’s partnership with TV psychic Jonathan Edward

Roma and Della’s spiritual beliefs

Notes by Pennie De Witt, former Lightworker and occultist of 26 years: My testimony

My interview with Jon Pounders on Day of the LORD Radio

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“I believe we are nearing the time of persecution in our nation. When the only public voices for Christianity are apostate religious church leaders and organizations, I believe that the net of persecution will then fall on the American Church very swiftly. The true Church is being scattered—slowly and systematically. Right now I do not know of one medium or even small Church of true believers that is standing against the current apostasy. I also do not know of any highly visible professing Christian that is doing so.”

from TruthKeepers:

A Prophetic Warning to the Church (March 4, 2003 1:56 pm)

In my opinion every true follower of Jesus Christ needs to be completely aware of the time that we are living in. If we are not in the last-days, then it is a trial run that is so close that the dangers are nearly identical. Therefore, we need to take heed of the many warnings in God’s Word concerning the great time of deception.

First, we need to recognize how powerful that the deception will be. It will be so powerful that the only means of surviving it will be the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
(Mat 24:24 NKJV) “For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.

Satan will pull out all the stops, hold back nothing, pour out everything in his bag of dirty tricks, and the spiritual atmosphere will be too strong for people who have not spiritually prepared themselves to resist it.
(2 Th 2:9-12 NKJV) The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, {10} and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. {11} And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, {12} that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

The spiritual atmosphere will be diametrically opposed to the atmosphere of a great revival. During times of great revival even lost people feel the effects of the renewal of passion for God. During great revivals, sin is driven back into the darkness. Evil workers are exposed for the charlatans that they are. False doctrine is denounced. Prayer meetings and church services take precedence over secular activities. Even the laws of the nation are reflective of the revival.

Today, there are deep doldrums in Christianity. Liars and other phonies are honored while at the same time people who speak the truth are dishonored and persecuted. Homosexuals are ordained as Christian ministers and professing Christians are accepting their ministry. There is little passion for God or His Word manifested publicly. Sodomites not only are pouring out of the darkness to stand proudly in public view, but they have infected our government, public education, and almost every other area of society. False doctrines pour from pulpits, out of religious television, lining the bookshelves of religious bookstores, and inundate the entire religious realm. Practically no one will attend a prayer meeting. Even a school event can replace a church meeting. Our nation’s laws are becoming increasingly reflective of the satanic activity in our government.

I personally know pastors who have given up trying to pastor in this atmosphere. I know other pastors who appear to be just barely hanging on. Many professing Christians are simply flowing with the degradation of the great apostasy; marching to the cadence of Satan. Other Christians are feeling the overwhelming effects of it all. They cannot find an honest assembly of true followers of Christ. Every day they fight feelings of discouragement and depression. The joy of the Lord is very difficult to express and they battle daily with feelings of hopelessness, emptiness, and isolation.

This is the time that we have been warned about. We should understand that every godly act and characteristic is going to be more difficult to perform and maintain. Prayer is a battle. Temptation to loosen ones grip on eternal life is constant and pressing. Urges to relax and roll with the flow, follow the herd, do what everyone else is doing, never ceases the attempt to infiltrate our spirits. Evil workers of unrighteousness appear as workers of righteousness. In fact, it is difficult in some cases to tell the difference on the surface. They appear as ministers and people of righteousness. One should remember to listen to the Holy Spirit warning signals in their spirit. Consider their fruit. What have they ever done for Christ? Ignore how they make you feel or their flattering words and comforting ways. Reject the sensationalism of lying signs and wonders. Remember that few people are driven to hell. Most of them are led there by deceptive spirits.
(2 Cor 11:12-15 NKJV) But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast. {13} For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. {14} And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. {15} Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.

God’s Word declares that the one act that will doom people to deception and delusion is rejecting love for the truth. The very thing that could save those who are deceived is the thing that they reject. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of truth. If He is in us, we will not be deceived. We can walk through barrenness and never thirst or hunger. We will be filled with righteousness. We can master the deceptive time and rise above the clouds of evil lying signs and wonders.

When people reject love for the truth, the Holy Spirit will depart. They will be left to their own devices to defend themselves against the great deception of the last-days. God will not permit them to be shocked into returning to the truth. If they will not receive His love, His Word, His Son, and His Spirit, they do not deserve heaven. Neither do they deserve to be driven into heaven by specter of fearful calamities. Instead, they will be sent a strong delusion so that they will believe the lie and be damned.

In times past, when catastrophic events occurred, people flocked to church services in fear for their souls. Oklahoma City churches reported huge increases in attendance after the Murrah building was bombed. In a few months, the attendance was back to normal. Evidently, those people went back to their old ways of living under the cloud of deception. The very striking fact about the aftermath of 9-11-01 was that many people did not look to Christian leaders for comfort and answers. Instead, they flocked to events where an evil ecumenical mixture of wizards, witches, and other evil workers of darkness joined with professing Christians to pray for the nation. We saw no increase in attendance in our Fellowship.

This may indicate that the great delusion has been delivered to the earth and the package may be opened. If so, people who stand in the shadows, who are trying to live on the fringes of true Christianity, who play on both sides of the fence, who fail to develop passion and intimacy with God, are in deep, serious, trouble. We were warned by God’s Word and His prophets that this time would come. In my opinion, it is here. I encourage everyone not to settle for a casual relationship with God. Don’t settle for a passionless, nonchalant, church meeting where you are not inspired or challenged to stay fresh in your relationship with God. Don’t let your guard down. The hour is late and the time is short. Stand your ground and keep your armor on.

It is going to get very difficult in the last of the last-days, but the most dangerous time is during this initial wave of deception. The reason is because we have gotten used to the blessings of Christianity in a democratic nation. We can get in our vehicles on Sunday morning and there are many church buildings within a short drive from our homes. Someone else preaches to us, teaches us, and does almost every other thing for us. All we have to do is show up. What kind of Christians has this type of “Churchanity” produced? I do not mean to be offensive here, but for the sake of clarity I must be blunt with my answer. In most cases it has produced people that cannot take care of themselves spiritually. Instead, they depend on the three-per-week (or less) church services to keep them spiritual and inspired, and most of them only attend occasionally. They are weak, pampered, religious at the best, and at the worst they are lost, malformed and mutated by years of lack of growth and a viable experience with God. As such, they are no threat to the kingdom of darkness and no benefit to the kingdom of light.

Now, we are going to have to adapt steadfastness of faith to the harshness of the time that we are in. Christians should have been building themselves spiritually during the times of peace. If we had been actually assimilating and applying the Word of God that we have been inundated with, then we would have more than been prepared for this evil time.

We’ve been taught to be weak, to live weak, to need church meetings to a degree that God never intended. Certainly we find strength in fellowship and it is a tremendous blessing to hear the Word of God taught or preached by someone who is anointed. But if we have not developed the practice of feeding ourselves, what are we going to do in the tough times? Paralyzed people and babies have to be fed, but healthy and mature people feed themselves.

Men need to become and remain strong in the Lord and begin taking responsibility for their spiritual duties. The time is coming when men will have to teach their own families. We need to get tough, knowledgeable, and spiritually strong. All of us need to become prayer intercessors. I believe that it is time to consider what is eating up our time and make some serious choices about our activities. If it comes to the point that we cannot find a church building to meet in where God is present and people are sincere, then the only option is to meet in our homes. However, there were times when the Church was even denied that privilege. They had to meet in catacombs and other places that do not even remotely resemble a church building.

I believe we are nearing the time of persecution in our nation. When the only public voices for Christianity are apostate religious church leaders and organizations, I believe that the net of persecution will then fall on the American Church very swiftly. The true Church is being scattered—slowly and systematically. Right now I do not know of one medium or even small Church of true believers that is standing against the current apostasy. I also do not know of any highly visible professing Christian that is doing so.

I could say a lot more, but let me conclude with one more point. The key to understanding that this current apostasy is not going to be resisted by most professing Christians is in the way most of them perceive Christianity. The only way that so many hirelings could be in pastorates is if most of the people want it to be this way. I heard one of the deadest sermons I have ever heard one Sunday morning while visiting a church meeting. A toxic religious mixture oozed from the pulpit and entered the hearts of people who loved to be poisoned so. The sad thing about that church is that it is growing steadily in number. I thought the man might be sick, but I was informed that he was in good health. In other words, he preached that way on purpose. This is the standard for most church meetings today. It does not resemble biblical Christianity. What it is I cannot tell. What it is not is a meeting of true Christians who are aware of the time and striving for intimacy with God. May God help us to understand what is happening!
The prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests rule by their own power; And My people love to have it so. But what will you do in the end? (Jer 5:31 NKJV)

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from Truth Keepers:

There has been enough said and written about the “Son of God” movie to convince people who are willing to listen to truth. The ones who believe it is a good movie will not change their minds. People that cannot recognize the issues with the movie before they watch it will probably not detect anything wrong about it after they watch it. Nothing I can add will make a difference either way. God does not force people to follow Him, and neither can we force them to accept the truth. The dividing line has been drawn.

The most disconcerting factor in the situation is the unwillingness of people to even consider the facts and God’s word. Instead of saying, “Well I didn’t know that, please tell me more”, they go on the attack. I’m used to being called names, accused of being everything from a heretic to demoniac, but not to the extent that I received during the past few days. The synopsis of most responses minus the diatribes is, “I don’t care what you say, I don’t want to hear it, I like the movie” ala Matthew Hagee. I can’t argue with that.

It appears that everyone that has spent the past decade ignoring the warnings are incapable of hearing them now. I don’t know all the reasons they chose that path. For some it was bad soteriology and for others bad eschatology. Some professing Christians have become so enamored by the world system that they have no taste for things spiritual. The Apostle Paul wrote concerning endtimes professing Christians:

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. (2 Timothy 4:3-4)

Finally, there is this word from David Wilkerson.

I keep this foremost in my mind and before my eyes, because every minister of the gospel one day has to face it when he stands before the Lord. He will say, “Son of man, I made thee a watchman. You were to hear the words of My mouth and give them warnings from Me. You were to tell the wicked, ‘Thou shalt surely die.’ And you gave them no warning nor spoke to warn the wicked to turn from their wicked ways to save their lives. These same wicked men died in their sins, but their blood I’ll require at your hands.”

The rest of the message can be found at the following link. True Discernment

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