Sunday, October 01, 2017


I am truly distressed on how often preachers depart from the word of God to promote man-made agendas. Some church websites now hide or omit any Statement of Faith - they substitute "values" which become de facto doctrines and these more often than not reflect the world's values rather than God's. I just saw one Friday for a church in Cincinnati and wrote the pastor a kind letter about his. Here are just two values du jour...

UNITY. Jesus prayed in John 17 in his high priestly prayer for his children to be one. He did not pray they would ignore false doctrine and unite with people who teach the opposite of the Bible. DIVERSITY. The Bible says that people of every tribe and tongue will be in heaven. Our churches should not be segregated racially. economically or denominationally. However, when churches welcome in unrepentant persons who practice sexual immorality and other things, that is not a positive value. It leads to the death of churches.

In other cases, there are "drive-by" references to those little memes repeated endlessly by Christians without regard to their validity. "By his stripes" is short for promoting healing being guaranteed by the atonement. They say the blood of Jesus guarantees wellness. Ignored are Jesus' own words in Matthew 26:28 "This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins." It does not say "This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins, for divine health, and for you to be rich." They also cite Isaiah and Peter totally out of context where the message is CLEARLY spiritual healing, and they ignore the fact Jesus did his healing ministry BEFORE the atonement. Yet that is preached endlessly. Now I believe in healing, and in fact testified to a Southern Baptist Pastor last night about the healing I had witnessed.

Then someone prayed at church today about dropping doctrine as though doctrine were something evil. You sure need to know what the Bible says about doctrine before being dismissive of it - I have a booklet I wrote on the subject I would be glad to send you if you message me. And then also today I heard yet another plea for people to "tithe", which is absolutely nowhere in the new covenant. Paul says each man is to determine in HIS OWN HEART what to give. Read the history of the early church. Further, Old Testament tithing was 23.3% - two annual FOOD tithes of 10% and a triennial poor tithe of 10%. This is on crops and the Pharisees even tithed on their window plants. If you got 10 strawberries, you gave God two each year and three every third year. Abraham gave 10% of the spoils of war to Melchizadek, not all he had at home. The 10% of your money idea is a relatively modern construct and no one in my six decades in Christ has ever been able to satisfactorily explain to me how it really can be equitably applied in an industrialized society with some people getting benefits. some not, others self-employed. Total compensation includes benefits yet just like teachers do not care where students understand evolution but just want them to believe it, preachers never explain how their system really works - they simply want people to do it - gross, net, etc., but none include benefits which shows the inherent injustice of this man-made idea and God is not a God of injustice. The same preachers do not preach adherence to other ceremonial laws but just this one. Jesus nailed them ALL to the cross and we are in the dispensation of grace. Most of the references to giving in the New Covenant have to do with giving to PEOPLE such as the POOR, ORPHANS, and WIDOWS, and sometimes to support the evangelists and those ministering, but never to support a massive church structure. That came later. Further, people say to solve your financial problems by giving.  There is MASSIVE abuse of this with TV preachers, but local churches can be just as abusive. Two in Philly have asked for your 1040 to ASSESS your tithe. Crazy, huh? Pride problems? Immense. Pins for giving certain amounts - a direct violation of scripture. We give because of the overflow in our spirit and our desire to minster to Christ by helping spread the gospel and ministering to the least of his brethren. Many do not realize that lots of cults and other religions tithe also, and no doubt that personal discipline of money can benefit you whether or not you are a Christian.  However, we must not use compulsion or selective use of the Old Covenant to guilt people into doing something.  90% of Christians do not tithe - some because they are simply selfish, but others because they know what the Bible really teaches. People will give a lot on their own when their relationship is right with the Lord.   I have a booklet on tithing practices too if you message me.

The sad thing to me is that just like so many people accept the memes of the drive-by media uncritically (someone just quoted CNN to me as an unimpeachable source!!!), they accept what they are told without EVER examining the scriptures carefully as the Bereans did. Be sure to do that. I tell people to check me out as well just as Paul instructed the church to do with him, so no one, no matter how much you respect them, is exempt. We must press for the truth whether in politics, faith, or in our chosen career. We really have to cut through the mustard to avoid deception.