A Disturbing Double Standard

I’ve been blogging now for almost 18 month’s and for the most part I’ve enjoyed my time in the blogosphere. I enjoy researching and writing and I especially enjoy reading the various reactions from my readers. During the past couple of weeks I’ve started to notice a startling trend which I would like to share with you today….and that is the “double standard” that seems to exist amongst some of those claiming to be “watchmen” to the Body of Christ…….

 

The recent dust up between Richard Abanes and Ken Silva is a perfect example of what I’m talking about. Several bloggers including myself authored posts on this very volatile situation…..each of us attempting to weigh in biblically on what should or should not have taken place. One of the Scriptures that were used by the supporters of the Silva camp was Matthew 18:15-17. Silva’s supporters believe that Abanes violated this Scripture…..yet don’t believe that Silva violated this Scripture because Abanes violated it first. Here’s the Scripture;

 

Matthew 18:15-17

15 “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. 16But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 17If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.

 

If your brother sins against you go to your brother alone. Clearly Abanes didn’t do this and clearly he should have. Instead he went to the ISP that hosted Silva’s site. At this point it was still a private matter between Abanes, Silva and the ISP. When Silva was informed of the complaint did he go to his brother? No he did not. The text says that Silva should have gone to his brother. Instead Silva went to the “church” via his soon to be taken down website and anyone with a modem and internet connection could learn all about this private matter…..Silva bypassed going to his brother and when that didn’t work out he is required by Scriptures to take two or three witnesses with him to confront Abanes…..he didn’t do that either. I left a comment stating as much on this blog post and received the following reply from Daniel Chew;

 

Phil Naessens:

Pastor Ken broadcast this mess because the ISP threaten him with the removal of his website unless he removed that “offending” article. So there was real action involved which have implications for the entire issue of free speech as well. If Abanes would just threaten Pastor Ken, or slander him, then yes, he should have turn the other cheek. As for 1 Cor. 6 and Mt. 18, they do not apply since Abanes has already violated them in going after Pastor Ken.

 

So now it’s ok to violate Scripture if someone else violates it first. I wonder what would have happened if Abanes committed adultery with Silva’s wife….would it then be ok for Silva to do the same with Abanes’ wife? I wonder what Chew’s response would be then? “Abanes violated Scripture so the Scriptures don’t apply to Pastor Ken because Abanes violated them first”….I would hope Chew wouldn’t use this logic but one never knows anymore does one?

 

I was completely taken aback by this comment from Chew. The Scriptures say NOTHING about real action…..they don’t say it’s ok to violate Scripture because of the implications of Freedom of Speech…..the Scripture says go to your brother. The Scriptures don’t say it’s ok to violate Scripture because someone already violated them…..Scripture says to go to your brother.

 

I also made mention that I believed that Ken Silva disregarded the following;

Matthew 5:39 (ESV)

39 But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.

 

Imho Ken Silva didn’t turn the other cheek…instead he turned a private matter into a full fledged circus for the whole world to see….playing the role of the martyr to the hilt on various websites and radio programs. Naturally Daniel Chew and others fully supported “Pastor Ken”  making Genesis 3 type excuses to defend their friend…..it’s been nearly two weeks and I’m still flabbergasted at the absurdity of it all.

 

Clearly there is a double standard here Brethren and one we can’t ignore. If we are to believe Daniel Chew’s interpretation of Scripture, that it’s ok to violate God’s Word as long as someone violates it first then why bother reading and adhering to God’s Word? We all sin and fall short of the glory of God and most of these sins are private and personal. Does this mean we can now sin against those who have sinned against us? If someone lies about you is it ok for you to then do the same in return? Heavens no!

 

This is the type of logic used by the world Brethren. We are in the world but we are not to be of the world and clearly both Richard Abanes and Ken Silva used worldly methods to confront sin. Silva supporters admonished Abanes for not adhering to Scripture yet looked the other way, making excuses and denying Scripture in order to make Ken Silva look like the innocent victim when in reality Silva is just as guilty of violating Scripture as Richard Abanes……maybe more so because Silva holds himself out as a “Pastor-Teacher”……

 

“Pastor- teachers” are supposed to know better (1 and 2 Timothy, Titus) aren’t they? Maybe “Pastor Ken” should spend less time pulling out the logs in others eyes and more time yanking out the beam in his….but considering recent events I doubt that will happen anytime soon…apparently Silva’s supporters will defend him no matter what he does so why should he…. this is disturbing on many levels.

 

What type of message are we sending to the Body Brethren? What would a new believer see when he looks at the interpretations of someone like Daniel Chew? Daniel Chew and others hold themselves out as “apologists” confidently pointing out the flaws of others doctrinal interpretations yet they struggle interpreting and correctly applying the milk of the word…how can they be trusted with the meat of the Word? Truly amazing!

 

Richard Abanes claims the reason he didn’t go to Ken Silva was because he knew from past experiences that Silva wouldn’t listen to him. It doesn’t absolve him but here’s a link regarding another Brother who has an issue with Ken Silva who actually followed Matthew 18 to the letter. I can only wonder how the Silva supporters will attempt to explain this one away…..have a look at the following link;

 

http://christianresearchnetwork.info/2008/08/12/so-long-farewell-ill-see-some-of-you-in-the-sky/

 

It appears, at least to me, that Ken Silva is unapproachable. Why not at least speak with the Brother? Why become evasive and defensive when another brother feels he has been offended? Why not at least allow another Brother to plead their case? Instead Silva went public about this matter just like he did with Richard Abanes and of course Silva’s supporters came to his defense. Big surprise huh?

 

Ken Silva is a “pastor”? I find that unbelievable. His conduct in each of the two matters I have shared is reprehensible and completely unbiblical. The fact that anyone supports Silva by covering up and making excuses for his failure to obey Scripture says quite a bit about the double standards being used and adhered to by certain people claiming to be “apologists” and “watchmen”….dontcha think?

I think Joe Martino hit the nail on the head when describing Silva and his supporters….team politics all the way. “Don’t do as I do, just do as I say” seems to be that team’s mantra….and I wouldn’t want to be on their team for all the money in the world…..would you? 

Finally, double standards have no place in Christianity beloved. Chastising one Brother in the Lord for violating Scripture yet giving another Brother a free pass for violating the same Scripture is just plain unscriptural and is sending out a dangerous message to the Body of Christ.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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38 thoughts on “A Disturbing Double Standard

  1. “Ken Silva is a ‘pastor’”? I find that unbelievable.” Well, guess you’ll have to take that up with Jesus as He’s the One Who called me. 🙂

  2. This is the problem I have had with both Silva and Abanes. There is a double standard. I also wanted to point out this one and maybe Richard can put some light on these conflicting statements.

    Abanes has claimed here that he doesn’t know whether Silva is elect or not, yet on his other site and in his open letter to Camp he appears to contradict that statement. Compare:

    Posted August 5th at 2:23 from this site under “The Richard Abanes Ken Silva Fiasco”:

    RA: I have no idea whether Silva is elect or not.

    Now from the link Richard provided to “The Open Letter to Steven Camp”.

    http://abanes.com/RA_SC_KS.html

    See the Abanes response to Camp’s calling Silva a man of God in “Response #2”

    RA quote: “You and I disagree here. I see Ken in a very different light.”

    So, I have to ask, “which is it”, because it does make a difference imho. Does Abanes not consider Silva redeemed at this point and if so, why? If not, than what doctrinal positions does Silva hold (using the Abanes method here) that leads to this assessment?

  3. Excellent post! Neither of these two should be prowd of this. I wonder what effect this has had on donations and sales?

  4. This has become an absolute MESS — Thank you, Ken Silva, for taking what you perceived to be a PRIVATE sin on my part to the church.

    I still do not agree that my contacting Silva’s ISP was a sin — his personal salvation aside. It is NOT a sin or a violation of Matt. 18 to simply alert an ISP to what I thought was a TOS violation on Silva’s part. And I believe I can give a biblical, theologically sound reason for this based on the actual text of Matt. 18, which is clearly talking about PRIVATE SINS between brothers.

    1. What Silva posted on the internet in his article was NOT a private sin.
    2. I did not take my complaint to fellow believers or the church, I kept my complaint private.
    3. To report Silva was as biblical as complaining about someone parking there car in font of your driveway or calling the cops on someone playing loud music at 3am.

    Now, having said that — let us just say, for the sake of discussion I WAS indeed wrong. Let us say I was 1005 wrong. For whatever reason, let’s say that I did, as ken and others allege, sin against ken by breaking Matt. 18.

    Well, if this is the case, then all that means is that he, in turn, did the exact same thing — even worse, in fact — by taking my so-called private “sin” to the church. And he is a “Pastor,” which is a role he often makes sure everyone knows about.

    And then we have Chris Rosebrough, who also did not contact me privately when he was offended by comments I made online in the comments of one of my blog posts. He flaunted his threat against me on my own blog in the comments, saying he would not only contact my ISP, but then call his attorneys to begin LEGAL ACTION against me if I did not meet his demands ASAP. No one said a word about that.

    Hmmm. Double Standard? You bet. Bible twisting? Absolutely. Shameful. Oh, most definitely.

    R. Abanes

    PS Dorothy, my elect vs. not elect issue is based on my complete inability to see into Ken’s heart. But his fruit is lousy, imho.

  5. Oh, an Dorothy, you mentioned my response to STEVE CAMP, where I stated: “You and I disagree here. I see Ken in a very different light..”

    That was NOT in reference to Ken’s salvation, it was in reference to his behavior as related to Camp’s observation — “a dear man of God.”

    To me, such a compliment implies a kind of man/servant who ….. does not match up with Silva. I will not get into specifics.

    RA

  6. Great post!

    My concern however the way Richard Abanes using this blog as a means to defend himself and strip himself of any alleged offence. Rather than repenting, he keeps giving excuses on why he is right.

    As for Ken Silva, I have no say. Both of them are acting like two proud individuals . I guess it’s no longer about God but about what they feel is right or wrong. Thanks.

  7. Phil, many of these people are not apologists. They wiggle their way to power/voice through the internet and use grade school research and logic to make their points. When confronted they get mean and call names, just like a bully on the play ground.

    Ken, keep pulling the “Jesus called me card” to avoid accountability. Every time you do it reveals how much like a politician you are. Why don’t you just say… “that is above my pay grade” and move on?

    Jesus called me so I don’t have to use the same standards of scripture? Ken, since Jesus called you, aren’t you under a stricter judgment? Shouldn’t your standard be higher. shouldn’t your use of Matthew 18, Matthew 5 be so evident?

    Ken, I know you don’t answer direct questions with direct answers but I will try. Did you violate Matthew 18 or Matthew 5 in your interaction with Richard?

    Phil: I agree with you….and James 3:1 agrees with what you are saying…..How about it Ken? Did you violate Matthew 18 and Matthew 5?

  8. Hello Naomi,

    Greetings. Actually, I have given several rational responses, including my interpretation of several Bible verses based on standard/classic exegesis of the texts in order to explain my actions. I will be glad to point you to these explanations if you are interested.

    peace in him,

    RAbanes

    PS. Just FYI, NONE of this — NONE of it — would have ever even been a factor for ANYONE since I kept all of my words, thoughts, and complaints PRIVATE and spread nothing to fellow believers or the church. It was Ken Silva who, instead of choosing to handle it behind-closed-doors (my wishes), decided to completely disregard scripture, and tell the church! Thus, we have this mess. 😦

  9. Hey, I’ve been reading your webpage and I’m a little concerned. Many times in your posts, you analyze and give your opinion on a minister, but rarely do you evaluate a quote of a pastor and try to give them the benefit of the doubt as your brother in Christ. Brother, you mock the things like Bentley’s tattoos that offend your flesh. It would be like my exposing your grammar and discrediting your message based on that. Does it make you any less legitimate? Only if I’m trying to find a way to be offended.

    So why would I be looking for a reason to be offended? I look to get offended, make myself a martyr or a crusader and judge only when I don’t perceive God’s love and faithfulness toward me.

    I won’t attack any of your character because we both profess Christ as King, but in your posts you would gain much credibility if you would quote a preacher and try your best to validate them with the authority of scripture. Demonstrate your humility by considering the fact that though you know the Omniscient God, you may not know everything. If there is a way to support the claim using the testimony of scriptures, great. If there is no way to support their claims, the word will demonstrate it. Our opinions and flesh cloud the truth and hinder the growth of the Body of Christ in unity.

    Feel free to respond to me privately.

  10. OK, let’s turn back the clock and start over.

    Ken Silva has something on his website that is perfectly legal and biblical criticism.

    Richard Abanes turns the other cheek.

    🙂

  11. Quote from RA:

    1. What Silva posted on the internet in his article was NOT a private sin.

    (OK, forgetting that it doesn’t appear to have been a sin at all, come on brother! You live and breathe in public with your books and on the internet with your waves of public comments and criticism flooding hundreds of blogs over the years. How private is your lack of cheek-turning when everyone knows you’re the most infamous non-cheek-turner in the entire Christian blogosphere? Seriously, I doubt anyone can come up with a clear 2nd place because you are so far ahead. You live to argue at the molecular level to protect your own ego and I’m sure a friend or two has informed you how bad it looks by now. Why not just chill out and quit being so obsessive-compulsive about it?)

    2. I did not take my complaint to fellow believers or the church, I kept my complaint private.

    (Oh my. This is absurdly delusional. You contacted a public company in an attempt to quietly tattle-tale on Ken and get him to either bend to your will or find another host to publish his perfectly legal thoughts.)

    3. To report Silva was as biblical as complaining about someone parking there car in font of your driveway or calling the cops on someone playing loud music at 3am.

    (You did the equivalent of calling the cops or calling their landlord and ask that they be evicted when the car bumper was slightly a few inches in your driveway or the music was moderately loud during the day. Petty stuff you can ignore. The neighborhood deserves to know there’s a guy on the block who tries to get people evicted with stunts like that.)

  12. Phil and all,
    You’re right that claiming the coverage of Matthew 18 for one and not the other is a double standard.

    HOWEVER, I want to CAUTION you on something very important.

    Matthew 18 doesn’t apply to either one of these folks. The caution here is this: OF LATE MANY HAVE STARTING TO MISTAKENLY USE MATTHEW 18 TO STOP THOSE WHO EXPOSE FALSE TEACHING IN THE ASSEMBLY. This is WRONG AND HARMFUL.

    Matthew 18 applies only to private sin between two folks in the assembly. Historically, it has NEVER been applied, to my knowledge, to open sin, especially false-teaching. Using it to squelch the very few who endeavor to expose folks like Richard Abanes, Rick Warren, the WoF crowd, and the like is not the intention of Jesus. After all, it’s He who said it.

    AND Christ PUBLICLY withstood the Pharisees and Sadducees. Paul PUBLICLY withstood Peter when he openly associated primarily with circumsized believers. All the prophets confronted sin PUBLICLY.

    The biblical pattern is to deal with public sin publicly and private sin privately until such point as private confrontation becomes futile.

    THIS IMPORTANT!!! You couldn’t deal effectively with false-teaching privately. What are you supposed to do if a man has publicly spread lies? Go to each house of all who heard it? No!

    AND if you still wish to question me on this, look to the old time commentators, like Matthew Henry. Never will you find them saying that Paul or the prophets were out of line when confronting public sin publicly.

    And the sins of both of these men were public. Abanes publicly pushes Rick Warren, and Silva was less than discreet when he simply could have gone to another server. If we are to count Siva’s act sinful, and I’m not so sure it was more than bad judgment, it was done just as publicly as Abanes’. Silva’s application of his understanding of Matthew 18 (wrong as it is) ought to be applied evenly.

    In Christ,
    Phil Perkins.

  13. Wonderful brother Perkins. This is what I have been trying to put accross too. My bias is the fact that RA is in support of Rick Warren and I certainly can’t support someone who sides a heretic whether he is right or wrong.

    I won’t mind having that explanation RA.

  14. JESS: forgetting that it doesn’t appear to have been a sin at all……

    RA: Ken Silva’s website is rife with misrepresentations, half-truths, out-of-context quotes, blatant lies, unbiblical judgments, and all manner of baseless accusations against fellow believers. This is all public. Such things sound fairly sinful to me, especially for a pastor-teacher.
    _______________
    JESS: How private is your lack of cheek-turning when everyone knows you’re the most infamous non-cheek-turner in the entire Christian blogosphere?

    RA: Really? Everyone? That’s a lot of people. And as for being a non-cheek-turning, please:

    1) list the apparently numerous instances where I have not turned the other cheek in connection to something said about me;
    2) define when/where/why it is permissible (per your take on the Bible) to correct a false accusation or piece of public information that is erroneous; and
    3) give you defense of Ken Silva for not simply turning the other cheek when his ISP asked him to simply remove one little article out of hundreds.

    I look forward to your replies.
    _______________
    JESS: I doubt anyone can come up with a clear 2nd place because you are so far ahead. You live to argue at the molecular level to protect your own ego and I’m sure a friend or two has informed you how bad it looks by now. Why not just chill out and quit being so obsessive-compulsive about it?

    RA: You are making a lot of judgments here at the expense of truth, fairness, and to be honest, kindness. The facts are simple:

    1. I found a PUBLICLY posted article by Ken Silva to be offensive and damaging to my reputation.
    2. I was unable to approach Silva due to his self-imposed isolation from anyone who might want to correct him or criticize him. Because his offense was public, there was no need for me to approach him personally per Matthew 18. Moreover, because his offense also violated the TOS agreement of his ISP, I sent a PRIVATE email to that ISP.
    3. Silva felt as if my actions amounted to a sin against him. However, instead of taking it to me privately, he took it to the church! This action in turn has caused an uproar, complete with yet more sinning, false accusations, and division. Moreover, he broke federal copyright/privacy laws by posting a private email without permission. That such actions continue to be excused by “Christians” is appalling.

    Those are the simple facts.
    ________________
    JESS: This is absurdly delusional.

    RA: Sad. 😦
    ________________
    JESS: The neighborhood deserves to know there’s a guy on the block who tries to get people evicted with stunts like that.

    RA: Double-sad. 😦 😦

    RAbanes

  15. NAOMI: My bias is the fact that RA is in support of Rick Warren and I certainly can’t support someone who sides a heretic whether he is right or wrong.

    RA: Warren isn’t a heretic. Sorry, but that is simply wrong, hurtful, divisive, and deception that you have been handed from people who have twisted the truth to make it look like Warren is a heretic. I will pray for you, that your eyes will be opened.

    And, btw, it is a quite alarming to hear someone actually admit that they would never support another person — even if they were right on an issue — just because that other person disagreed with them on a religious issue.

    And the opposite is just as scary — i.e., that you would still support someone, even if they were wrong and you knew they were wrong — just because they agreed with you on a certain religious issue.

    Friends, we are in trouble. The Body of Christ is extremely ill in certain places, it seems.

    R. Abanes

  16. RA: Ken Silva’s website is rife with misrepresentations, half-truths, out-of-context quotes, blatant lies, unbiblical judgments, and all manner of baseless accusations against fellow believers. This is all public. Such things sound fairly sinful to me, especially for a pastor-teacher.

    (Me here)

    I would like to see some specifics to match this statement. I know I’ve asked you what you found offensive in Silva’s judgment of your character and you refused to respond. I think it’s time to lay some of it out on the table if you want to make statements like this.

    I’m not the enemy Richard. I’m trying to hold you just as accountable as you want to hold Silva, so I need to see some solid examples to validate the above statement.

  17. RA sir,

    There is no point interjecting words that doesn’t exist in my comments there. No where did I say that I was going to side someone that is wrong just because we agree on some ‘religious issue’. And the Rick Warren issue isn’t just some religious issue like you put it. I made that statement based on the issue you and Ken are dragging. I’m not supporting Ken either.

    Why I will direct my post at you is simply because you are available here to respond which is not so on the part of Ken. And I have stated my bias above.

    You said:
    “Warren isn’t a heretic. Sorry, but that is simply wrong, hurtful, divisive, and deception that you have been handed from people who have twisted the truth to make it look like Warren is a heretic. I will pray for you, that your eyes will be opened.”

    If truly you are biblically sound as you claim it wont be difficult for you to spot the error propagated by Rick Warren.

    Have been fortunate to own a copy of the Purpose Driven Life and I know what it’s all about. Thank God I learnt early enough to discard it. I will offer a word of prayer for you too. God bless.

  18. RA: Ken Silva’s website is rife with misrepresentations, half-truths, out-of-context quotes, blatant lies, unbiblical judgments, and all manner of baseless accusations against fellow believers. This is all public. Such things sound fairly sinful to me, especially for a pastor-teacher.

    Wow…see this is what I mean Richard. People can see you have zero issues with posting this kind of broadside on any blog you can find (after searching every waking hour to see if your name or Rick Warren is being mentioned online it seems) What other public figures are that obsessed?. Yet you complain to the ISP authorities about a man’s own private website. It’s hypocritically creepy and you should have friends that have informed you of that if they have observed your online behavior. Thanks to Ken, we now know even more about the odd activity behind the scenes.

    You’re so concerned about your image that you even love your own hypocrisy though, so I doubt you will do anything but defend your actions. Be happy these bloggers have allowed you to “RA-bomb” all their sites for years now with your distorted opinions and the fruit of aberrant Warrenism, and when others want to speak you need to let them. Resisters of Purpose Driven Religion will never be silenced just as you will never shut up. So deal with it.

  19. I was going to let you do it, but then I thought nah…I ‘ll do it for you!

    RA: Triple-sad. 😦 😦 😦

    JESS: Sorry if my honesty makes you feel bad. Seriously, the intent is not to aggravate your obsession, but to help you see it for what it is. It’s gone on too long and is only getting worse. Eventually you should learn as a public figure that the Internet and Constitution were not designed to revolve around your feelings, just as the world was not designed to revolve around Rick Warren’s vain philosophies.

  20. Phil- My final thoughts on this issue.

    1. I disagree with RA on alot of levels, however he has at least attempted to explain his actions in a reasonable however flawed matter.

    2. This arguement is really about PDL and Rick Warren and fund raising for both men.

    3. ODM’s that seek donations to their ministries cannot be trusted and are an oxymoron. (If people have discernment they won’t send money, If they had discernment they wouldn’t ask for money)

    4. Silva’s only response to your well written conclusion was not on any of the bibical questions you raised, but rather his claim of office. As is typical of all cult masters, when unable to defend the defenseless, go straight to the anointed authority claim, “take it up with Jesus”.

  21. I disagree. Ken Silva had no obligation to apply Matthew 18:15-17 to his dealings with Richard Abanes because there is no outward evidence that Abanes is in the faith. Look, Abanes follows RICK WARREN, ok? And Abanes’ defense of Warren (and his own activities) has frequently been much less than honest. If Silva has to treat Abanes as a brother in the faith, then you are obliged to do the same with these heretic apostate false preachers that you write about and all of their “judge not” followers that flood your weblog.

    Listen brother, there is a war going on. LOTS of very strong Christian bloggers, Youtubers, etc. have had their accounts removed, websites deleted, threatened with lawsuits, been subjected to slanderous smear campaigns, and even received stalking death threats. Of course, in some instances, it is overt unbelievers acting this way. But you know what? Most of the time, it isn’t. Most of the time, it is ALLEGED CHRISTIANS LIKE ABANES that have been carrying out the most successful, well organized, and persistent attacks against Christian apologetics and discernment enemies using the most dishonest and underhanded methods.

    And you know what? As one who regularly exposes the slime and filth that these false preachers promulgate, why should that fact surprise you? Abanes tried to knock out Silva’s weblog BECAUSE HE WAS TELLING THE TRUTH! SOMEONE WHO ACTS LIKE THAT IS NOT YOUR BROTHER BUT YOUR ENEMY AND SHOULD BE TREATED AS ONE!

    Consider apostle Paul when he was being threatened by nonbelieving Jews. Did Paul apply Matthew 18:15-17 to them? OF COURSE NOT! HE APPEALED TO THE ROMAN AUTHORITIES, INCLUDING CAESAR, TO HELP HIM! OK, bad comparison, as the unbelieving Jews did not claim to be Christians. Fine. What about Paul’s opponents and defamers in Corinth and Galatia. Did Paul apply Matthew 18:15-17 to them? OF COURSE NOT! HE WROTE SEARING EPISTLES CALLING THOSE PEOPLE OUT FOR WHAT THEY WERE, LETTING EVERYONE KNOW THAT THEY WERE NOT HIS BROTHERS IN THE FAITH AND THAT THEIR EVIL DOCTRINES AND WAYS ARE TO BE OPPOSED! There is nothing in scripture that leads us to believe that Paul should have first taken aside the Judaizers or those who denied Christ’s literal resurrection before sending those epistles. In that similar fashion, Silva was under no obligation to apply Matthew 18:15-17 to a follower, supporter, and defender of a guy who promotes New Age, religious pluralism, and everything else in the book. I have a post on my site that talks about how Warren actually teaches women to wear revealing clothes and perfumes with pheromes in them while “evangelizing” … getting people to use LUST to get bodies in the church. http://healtheland.wordpress.com/2007/04/23/sex-sells-especially-in-the-church-rick-warrens-lust-driven-evangelism/
    That should not surprise you, because Warren is a promoter, defender, and business associate of the man who LITERALLY is the world’s biggest pornographer, Rupert Murdoch.
    Is T.D. Jakes your partner in Christ? Joyce Meyer? Eddie Long? Creflo Dollar? Kenneth Copeland? Paul and Jan Crouch? Juanita Bynum? Paula White? Are you obligated to heed Matthew 18:15-17 when you speak of them and deal with their followers as if they are? I have to tell you … if Kenneth Silva has to treat Richard Abanes as his brother, then you have to do the same “Jesus Christ was born again in hell” Kenneth Copeland and with Todd Bentley.

  22. Okay, so if I read you right job, if I do not think you are a christian, something Silva did not say of RA, but you do, I don’t have to deal with you well? So if you are not a Christian, and I think you dangerous and a false teacher, I can say you speak words of satan and your full of double speak, really crummy at using the bble and cult leader and I never violate Matthew 18. Sweet! Thanks for the loop hole in love, seasoning your language with grace, in actual biblical use… and much more. Thanks that love no longer has to sound all wimpy like in 1 Corinthians 13.

  23. An email I sent to Andrew Strom which he disregarded:

    Brother Andrew,

    I may not be a prophet, but I will tell you this without fear that I am speaking out of line or against the will of God.

    If you do not speak the whole counsel of God no matter what the consequences may be, God will find someone to.

    If you do not defend the faith over any and all ministries or people, God will find someone to.

    That includes J. Lee Grady and C. Peter Wagner, Che Ahn, Bill Johnson and John Arnott, Todd Bentley’s ordainers, as well as any other man you may stand to lose something from for rebuking or exposing them.

    If you save your life, you will lose it.

    With sincere love in the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ,
    UnprofitableServant

  24. “Andrew Strom says there are 9 Lies in the Church; Truth Watch agrees, but has he got the Right Answers?

    An itinerant evangelist and preacher, Andrew Strom [AS] has recently posted a document on his website listing what he calls ‘nine lies’ afflicting today’s church. Truth Watch has reproduced Andrew’s nine lies because we are encouraged that some Charismatics and Pentecostals are aware that there is something amiss in many of their churches. Some of Andrew’s points support the objectives and claims made by Truth Watch.

    [AS] “It is a sad fact that today’s church is deceiving itself in some very crucial areas. (Actually in many other areas now too) Below are some plain facts that may shock a few people”:

    [TW] Andrew’s [AS] opening statement is correct and accords with the premises contained in both our long and short declarations. More and more people appear to be recognising that there are some major problems in all of the evangelical church. (Not just in the Catholic, Pentecostal or Charismatic ones )

    [AS] 1. “Ask Jesus into our heart” is not in the Bible. Neither is “Give your heart to the Lord”, or repeating a “sinner’s prayer”. These practices do not exist in Scripture at all. The subject of salvation is the most important subject in the Bible and we are being lied to about it. These doctrines are a total fabrication. They were invented to make salvation “quick and convenient” Many church members today who are relying on these things are clearly not ’saved’ at all”. ( Accept now Jesus Christ as lord of your life is!)

    [TW] AS is quite correct. This disturbing phenomenon has been apparent for a long time. A watered down gospel is ‘another gospel’ and is forbidden by Paul (Galatians 1:6-10). Because so many people are sold ‘cheap grace’ there are probably many in the church who are not really saved, many of whom leave. The church has suffered from this problem ever since Finney introduced such easy-believism ideas and techniques 150 years ago 9 (Even by the evangelists DL Moody) . Ray Comfort has also correctly identified that claims concerning ‘decisions’ at many evangelistic events are misinterpreted as genuine conversion. This results in inflated figures that are used to support such techniques. True Biblical evangelism includes an emphasis on the sinful nature, God’s holiness and repentance, not just love and grace.

    [AS] 2. “Church buildings do not exist in the Bible. They were invented around 200-300 AD, when the church was in serious decline. Only a backslidden church could fall so far away from the simplicity of the early church. Church buildings are anti-New Testament, and bring with them a host of problems and traditions. It was basically when the church fell into the hands of Rome that this concept of the “cathedral” really took over. And we are still spending millions on these monuments today”.( and the tithe itself now was not used to support any church buildings, but solely the poor people and the church workers and their families, and the people who received the tithe were not allowed to own any property as well)

    [TW] While we are opposed to unwarranted and lavish expenditure on buildings, especially if the cause of the gospel is likely to suffer, the fact is that Scripture doesn’t address the issue of owning property. AS’s point is therefore made rather more strongly than needed. ( But when most Church Properties theses day are owned, managed by a Cooptation that is not fully, daily accountable to the direct congregation this is really unacceptable too)

    His argument also misses an important point: for the first 200 years the churches could not own property freely as a persecuted and illegal sect. Even in the NT it is clear that the early church was open to meeting in public buildings (eg: Acts 19:8-10). It is interesting that as soon as they were permitted to do so many churches did buy or build their own facilities – implying there was no inherent opposition to ownership per se. Churches should be free to follow their consciences in this area, but should be open to a challenge based on a claim of unwise stewardship. This claim could be levelled at many churches today who spend a great deal of money on buildings at the expense of their willingness or ability to learn correct doctrine and spread the right gospel.

    [AS] 3. “The ‘one pastor runs everything’ model is totally unscriptural. Far from running everything, in the book of Acts we find the word “pastor” NOT EVEN USED ONCE. (The early church did have strong leaders and elders. But it was never a “one man band” like we see today. And never was it so “controlling” either)”.

    [TW] We are not sure what he implies when he says the word pastor is never used in Acts. It is used in Ephesians and only once. But his basic premise is quite correct. Many church leaders assume they have some sort of divine right to rule. They become ‘nicolaitans’ (‘heavy shepherding’ – Revelation 2:6) – those who like to exert power over the people, often leading them into error in the process. A pastor’s proper role is that of the shepherd (closely associated with teaching) equipping the people to be mature and active in the faith (eg: Ephesians 4:11-16). The problem is not pastors per se, but rather pastors who abuse their authority and role and refuse to bow to the Scriptural standards for shepherding a church.

    [AS] 4. “Tithing” is not a New Testament practice at all. And it is being shamefully abused by today’s preachers. In the New Testament we are told to give cheerfully – whatever we purpose in our hearts to give. Telling people that they MUST give 10% to the church or they are “robbing God” is totally sick – and a money-grubbing way of twisting Scripture. There is no evidence that the apostles EVER preached ‘tithing’ to New Testament believers. It was clearly regarded as an Old Testament practice”.

    [TW] AS’s makes his point rather simplistically but he is correct. Tithing at most establishes a guideline for voluntary NT giving but it is not mandatory. Sadly, many churches make tithing an article of faith. Nicolaitan pastors are often associated with a heavy emphasis on tithing. Some use money gathered in this way to support a lavish lifestyle and/or they waste it on foolhardy ventures.

    [AS] 5. “The words “prosper” or ‘prosperity’ was NEVER used by Jesus at all – and only exist a couple of times in the entire New Testament. Yet greedy preachers have built whole kingdoms upon them. The words – “sell what you have and give to the poor” and “deceitfulness of riches” and “you cannot serve God and mammom” and “woe to you that are rich” were DEFINITELY used by Jesus and the apostles. But we don’t hear these things preached too much, do we?”

    [TW] We have made a feature of decrying the so called ‘faith-prosperity gospel’. It is a shameful deceit that will not go unpunished. It brings the Word of God and the witness of true Christians unjustifiably into disrepute (see 2 Peter 2:17-19). AS is quite right. Nicolaitanism, the false tithing message and faith-prosperity are often associated.

    [AS] 6. “There were no Bible Colleges, Seminaries or degrees in the New Testament. The only people who seemed to have “Bible Schools” were the Scribes and Pharisees! The apostles were simple fishermen and tax collectors. It is likely that a number of them could not even read or write. What was their “qualification” for being in the ministry? Simply that they had SPENT A LOT OF TIME WITH JESUS. The fact that people expect a “professional clergy” today with degrees from Bible College has helped to make the church sicker and more unscriptural than ever. Simple humble people with a calling from God often cannot get to minister because they do not have a “piece of paper” to make them ‘qualified’.-Yet another disaster for the church.”

    [TW] While biblical scholarship is not wrong per se it is true that an over-emphasis on theological studies, as the main criteria for pastorship, is wrong. It is wrong because it is dangerous. A person’s gifting and calling for leadership and teaching comes from God, not a theological college. However, it does not follow that formal theological, (cemetary training ) is inherently wrong.

    It makes sense for a group of churches to pool pastoral training expertise and resources – but any such institutions or arrangements should be orientated to serving the churches and training pastors as a priority. Pastors and elders should emerge from within the church, not from seminaries. A danger here is to overreact and deny the need for proper training – leading to poorly taught leaders who are weak in the Word and vulnerable to deception and sin. ( Sadly getting a seminary degree does not mean one is holy sprit filled, nor even Christian for that matter)

    [AS] 7. “There is almost no evidence whatsoever that the early church had their “main meeting” on a Sunday. They gathered together ‘from house to house’ virtually every day! There were no church buildings. They did not dress up and “go to church”. There were no denominations. There were no separate groups with different ‘labels’. They lived their lives together – all the Christians in the local area. Love and fellowship and ‘koinonia’ were as natural to them as breathing. And the apostles in Jerusalem preached every day at huge open-air gatherings. -Not “hidden away” inside four walls. This was truly a “street church” in every way.” ( actually there church meetings stared on the first day of the week, and they started Saturday at 6.00 pm and continued likely till the wee hours of Sunday morning, and similar meetings were often held during many other days of the week too)

    [TW] AS is just plain wrong on this point. Christians may have met everyday in the very first days, but they also shared all in common (Acts 2:44-46). Most Christians don’t see this early post-Pentecost situation as normative for today (does Andrew believe we should share everything?). It is clear that the later regular practice of NT churches was to meet regularly once a week for public worship on the 1st day (Sunday)/”Lord’s Day” (eg: Acts 20:6-7; 1 Corinthians 16:1-3 cf Revelation 1:10).

    Early historical examples of Sunday worship:

    AS should also refer to the Diadache (written sometime between 70-120AD – believed by most scholars to be the earliest church document outside the NT)
    http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/didache.html
    14:1 But every Lord’s day gather yourselves together, and break bread, and give thanksgiving after having confessed your transgressions, that your sacrifice may be pure
    (Chapter 11 shows they already had problems with many false prophets!)

    Sunday worship in Epistle of Ignatius to the Magnesians (c115AD) Chapter IX
    http://www.ccel.org/fathers2/ANF-01/anf01-17.htm#P1504_264385
    If, therefore, those who were brought up in the ancient order of things have come to the possession of a new hope, no longer observing the Sabbath, but living in the observance of the Lord’s Day, on which also our life has sprung up again by Him and by His death

    Sunday worship in Epistle of Barnabas (c100AD) Chapter XV(15)
    http://www.ccel.org/fathers2/ANF-01/anf01-41.htm
    Ye perceive how He speaks: Your present Sabbaths are not acceptable to Me, but that is which I have made, [namely this, ] when, giving rest to all things, I shall make a beginning of the eighth day, that is, a beginning of another world. Wherefore, also, we keep the eighth day with joyfulness, the day also on which Jesus rose again from the dead and when He had manifested Himself, He ascended into the heavens.
    We could give many other examples, and this all 300 years before Constantine made Sunday ‘official’ (but he was only recognising the actual practice of the churches).

    AS rightly points out that there were no denominations in the NT. However, there were hardly the numbers to allow this or time for many errors to arise in a coherent manner. Unfortunately today denominations are a necessary evil if Christians are to worship in conscience freely yet still recognise each other as Christians. To force us all into one church necessarily leads to ecumenical ‘control-from-the-top’ or doctrinal compromise – the very things Andrew opposes!

    A better solution to these percieved issues is not to abolish Lord’s Day worship, but to promote a consistent church life through the week and to seek unity based on a common committment to the Truth. [For more on this issue see our article on church unity]

    [AS] 8. “The idea that you can replace the moving of the Holy Spirit with programs, programs and more programs just shows how low we have sunk. Man-made programs are everywhere today. The early church had much more of God and much less of ‘man’.”( One of the most boring events in life is to sit through these predictable unspiritual, sad events still too)

    [TW] AS fails to say that the Spirit speaks through the Word ( but even then not solely and the Holy Spirit still uses Prophecies now as well) , or that we need to return to the Word ( Firstly meaning Jesus Christ) . Hence he leaves the door open to people having “words” claimed to be of the Spirit. Such “words” are often used to justify unbiblical practices. This may be AS’s achilles heel. He has talked of going to set up a ministry in Kansas City, USA. If this means he plans to work with the so called Kansas City prophets it suggests AS’s doctrine in regard to the Spirit and the Gifts of the Spirit is flawed. [For further information read our letter to the pastor of the Upper Hutt City Fellowship concerning Rick Joyner]

    [AS] 9. We preach a ‘humanistic’ Jesus today. – A Jesus who exists mainly for our own “happiness”. A Santa Claus who wants to rain down continual blessings upon us. A God of grace and mercy without judgement, righteousness or truth. Our gross misrepresentation of who Jesus really is, is one of the most serious offences of the modern church. Today’s church seems to worship a “plastic” Jesus – one that she has made in her own image. What an offence to God.

    A lot of preachers are well aware that there is some thing very wrong with the church today. (It is mostly the preachers themselves that are not right with God) They know there is little ‘fear of the Lord’. They know there is no deep repentance or deep moving of the Holy Spirit. They know that it is just the same old “game” being played every week. A lot of them are very aware of this. But they will not do anything about it. They will not rock the boat. And they will “squash” anyone who comes along trying to do something. They do not want a real “shaking”. There is too much to lose. They have their careers and their little ‘kingdoms’ at stake. This is the real truth of the matter. This is where the rubber truly meets the road.

    That is why God is about to bring “Great Reformation”. He will not put up with these ‘hirelings’ any longer. He will not have them as leaders over His people. A lot of them are about to “lose their heads”. They will never lead God’s people again. This is what true ‘Reformation’ is all about. It is the process of replacing the old leadership and the old lies. -It is David taking over from ‘Saul’.

    There is a ‘New Wineskin’ coming. In fact it is upon us. There is a new leadership arising – many of them trained in the ‘wilderness’ for such a time as this. The hour is now here. LET THE NEW LEADERS ARISE! The sad fact is that today’s church has sunk so low that it is almost a matter of people needing to be RESCUED OUT OF HER. I never thought I would say something as radical as that, but it is the truth.

    The entire church is living a lie. Many inside her are told continuously that they are “OK” – that they are saved and headed for heaven. Nothing could be further from the truth. Multitudes of them are headed directly for hell. The systemized LYING that is going on has deceived the leaders and the people alike. It is the blind leading the blind. We need to contend for these people – desperately. Much of the church is “lost”. They are mired in deception – an entire system of deception.”

    [TW] Again, AS is generally right in his initial observations here, but his solutions badly miss the point. A true reformation only comes about through a faithful and repentant/prayerful return to the priority of the Word. Only as the church reforms in light of the Scriptures and becomes more faithful in proclaiming the gospel – can we regain hope of a genuine revival. Andrew’s over-emphasis on a supernaturally restored leadership is putting the cart before the horse. Godly leadership will only come from a return to the supremacy and priority of the Word and its associated truth. AS’s exaggerated view of the Spirit has distracted him. He needs to remember that the Holy Spirit comes to lead us into all truth, hence TW’s insistence on a return to a correct understanding of God’s Word. ” http://www.truthwatch.info/modules.php?op=modload&name=News&file=article&sid=112

    My concluding comment

    Our actions must be founded on what we know to be true from God’s Word, and that what is being directed us personally to each one of us by the Holy Spirit, and to do that we all still do need to continually in reality live a Holy Sprit filled life. it starts by daily reading the Bible, having a Bible devotional, and sadly even most pastors do not do that too.

  25. Hello Phil. Not sure if the earlier one was posted.
    Permit me to wage in with my own 2 cents. While all the dusts must have settled,it seems I was a little past late in getting in on the imbroglio that overtook the various ODMs with regards Ken Silva and Richard Abanes. I just read up on all that’s happened last night.

    I’d like to ask, what then do you term your site if it’s not an ODM? I’m thinking the likes of yomisays, pulpit pimps, critical issues and commentaries, apprising ministries, et al are ODMs. I remember you asking RA this, and he termed yours not as and ODM, but as a blog. I’m however curious as to the difference between your site and the aforementioned ones.

    Again, how would a John the baptist have responded in Ken’s case? Simply called R Abanes to the side and sorted things out, cos they’re supposedly “brothers”? How do you call a man who defends a false teacher a brother?

    Now, would any true ODM pull down an article just because a man claims it to be injurious to him, if the claims are true, and the offended party has not changed? Do we fear men? So what was wrong was Ken Silva bringing the situation to the attention of the whole world? I’m wondering: did Ken Silva just know a little more than we did? What would have happened had a Rob Bell, Creflo Dollar, Eddie Long, Juanita Bynum, Paula White, Matthew Ashimolowo, David Oyedepo been in the position of Richard Abanes, seeing that what RA perceives as an attack against his person is also carried out likewise on these other godless fellows (and we still could say RA was different) by a lot of faithful ODMs? We can say Ken did wrong, but do we expect him (or any other God fearing person) to do any less when it comes to these men as well, knowing they’ll also disguise as brothers and sisters? This whole fiasco ain’t about disparaging remarks, it’s rather about compromise. I read materials on Apprising ministries as well as yours, and a host of other ODMs, and there’s nothing substantially different in your approaches.

  26. In addition, we harp on the law and gnaw at a straw for survival when truth confronts us, and we call ourselves brothers: wolves in sheep skin. In the early church, such a fellow would have been exposed for what he is. Do we for fear of the law do that which conscience and truth forbid us do? And it is inconsequential if RA had pulled down his own posts on Ken.

    I would likewise have done what Ken did without second thought, and wouldn’t have thought to offer an explanation or defend myself beyond the saints, or even try to reach an accord. Peter didn’t waste much time with Simon the sorcerer. It’s not something to be taken to the church for reconciliation, nor ironed out privately. It’s for the church to know who he truly is, even if that means the world will mock (the world had already been mocking before now).

    I was initially disturbed by your giving him much attention on your blog to defend himself. Turns out that it was a good idea. He eventually showed himself for who he really is. A man is known by his fruits, and evil association corrupts good manners. Surely, this has been the case with Richard Abanes. We don’t reconcile or call a truce with someone who defends a false teacher, nor do we extend a hand of fellowship. Ken Silva sure knew this.

    P.S.
    Do I get any bells for being a first time commenter? Anyway, been reading your blog for over a year now.

  27. Baarnjee,

    Welcome to Theology Today!

    I consider this a blog that identifies the wolves but I think the other sites are far better then mine….mines really small potatoes compared to the ones you mention.

    Can you show me how Rick Warren is a false teacher? How does Rick warrens PEACE plan differ from the Gospel Rescue Missions or the Salvation Army other then the fact that Warren isn’t asking for money for this?

    thanks for being a reader Dude!

    Phil

  28. What makes one a false teacher? Teaching things contrary to the Bible. Philetus and Hymenaeus’ error was just that they claimed the resurrection was past. When Paul would remark, he said they had left the path of truth, and turned the faith of some away; and these guys didn’t do it for the money. And that just reminds me of the story of the young prophet who denounced Jeroboam, but was eventually deceived by an old prophet, and subsequently God’s judgement came upon him in 1 Kings 13.

    I don’t have my copy of the PDL here (bought it some four years back, and indeed practised some of the things in there), so I may not be able to offer much right now. However, I look up his PEACE plan, and I clearly see that it misses the mark based on scriptures.
    I must say that it presents a social gospel and passes it off as the true gospel.

    http://www.thepeaceplan.com/
    According to the PEACE plan, there are five giant problems that affect billions of people on our planet:
    spiritual emptiness, self serving leadership, extreme leadership, pandemic diseases, rampant illiteracy

    The plan:
    Promote reconciliation, equip leaders, assist the poor, care for the sick, educate the next generation.

    “The PEACE plan is designed to mobilize average church members to do normal tasks that can change the world.”

    That’s not what the Gospel is about. It’s not about changing the world, it’s not about attacking the five global giants; it’s about you coming out of the world, out of darkness into the light.
    He talks about the global giants that ravage the lives of billions of people worldwide, and says

    “[t]hese giants work together to constrain and prevent masses of people from knowing the saving grace of a loving God who sent his son…”

    Says who?

    It would have been a different case if he had retracted his PEACE plan, we could simply have pardoned it as an error and gone on with things. This plan has been on for some time now, and he still maintains the status quo. Ditto the PDL. I’ll just follow Paul here, and view him in the same category as Hymenaeus and Philetus. If he has been severally cautioned about this and he doesn’t see anything wrong in it, then I suppose that says a lot about him.

    As to the Gospel Rescue Mission, I have no clue as to who they are or what they do (well, I might as well just find out online); and I haven’t really been so into the Salvation Army, but the fact that they class the Sabbath as binding in practice will definitely draw me away from fellowshipping with them. It doesn’t however mean I won’t share the Gospel whenever I can.

  29. I’d like to know how posted comments are displayed prior to moderation. I find that I don’t see some kind of notification telling me comment was successfully posted or the posted comment having some tagline that reads this comment is subject to approval. That’s the reason I’ve been reposting my comments. I’m sure you’ll have noticed.

  30. Ibanj,

    Well said. I actually just finished reading the PDL and Warren does water it down a bit…well a LOT. I wouldn’t necessarily cast him in the same light as Hymeneas and Philetus as they were actually teaching heresy where Rick Warren has a different interpretation IMHO…..

    How does Warren hold to the essentials like Salvation, The Trinity etc? I look forward to hearing what you have to say Brother!

    As far as comments go, just hit submit and that should suffice…for some reason your comments are going into my spam…

    Phil

  31. Phil,
    I actually can’t find my copy of the PDL right now. That’s cos I’ve not been able to search for it over the weekend, cos of some other stuffs. I do not want to just post anything, even though I’m conversant with some of the things in the book. I’ll try and look for it today, and then get back to you.
    God bless.

  32. Found it. Took some searching though. I hope not to let this comment run for too long.

    The one essential and obvious fault with the PDL is it’s demeaning of the Almighty God. God becomes a buddy. He is portrayed as a being who can’t do without you. The book portrays a sentimental God that can be pulled by whims and caprices.

    Phil: I agree with you…that’s a big concern of mine as well

    Rick Warren doesn’t so much push forward the sin problem (and that’s a big problem). He takes a psychologist approach, using terms like guilt, shame, regret, unconscious punishment for sin (p.27-28). He gives the reason why a man should seek out his purpose by making sentimental claims such as God seeing man as important (p63). And when he writes that the unbeliever should love God and accept Jesus, he doesn’t teach the whole truth of man’s depravity (.p37, 34, 58, 59). The enormity of sin isn’t pushed forward.

    Phil: Another big red flag

    I would say his position on salvation, as contained in the PDL is flawed. The deepest need of man is salvation, and righteousness before God through Christ. Warren’s deepest needs of man include: a purpose to live for, people to live with, principles to live by, a profession to live out, and power to live on. Eventually, one discovers that the PDL is all about man, not God (p.41, 249, 242). The PDL is an adulation of man, and with this Warren insults Christ (see p.79). Jesus would die than live without me? What blasphemy! Who are we, but vapour that vanishes?

    Phil: And to think the first line of the book says “It’s not about you” which clearly the book is…..

    Then again, he distorts the true meaning of Eph 1:4, as he says that “God’s motive for creating you is love”, and here he includes (not expressly, but implicitly) everyone. He probably forgets what Paul means when he says God has designed some as vessels of honour, and some as vessels unto dishonour. Ephe 1:4 only applies to the new creation in Christ, and not the unrepentant (p. 24). For me, this is part of a warped interpretation of scriptures.

    Phil: Maybe not “warped” but clearly watered down….

    For me, it’s not about whether he believes in God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It’s about how he tactfully refrains from putting forward the whole truth about the Christ and the gospel.

    Phil: Nice summation Brother…..care to add anything else?

    Question: Many consider Warren a heretic based on the PDL and PDC books…..how do you feel about calling Rick Warren a heretic?

  33. Well, there are a few other things, but I feel they may not be as weighty as these.

    It definitely doesn’t feel good calling a person a heretic or a false teacher. I remember when I bought my copy of the PDL. I thought that was what was going to change my Christian walk, because of all the buzz and hype it generated. I read through it for the space of 7 months or so, always going back to see if I’d missed something out and all that stuff. Of course, my understanding hadn’t been enlightened all these while. Subsequently the errors were brought to the surface, and I had to stop reading it as a manual, or as he puts it an aid to the Bible.

    Truthfully, I think a lot of people have labelled him as a heretic just because of this one book (I did at a time); but when a man has been severally exhorted to retract his statements and books over such matters as these, and he willfully refuses, I’d take such as a false teacher.

    I am curious as to one thing: if the Seventh Day Adventist only add the Sabbath to their doctrine, would that make them less subject to scrutiny and rejection until they drop that teaching?

    No one is above error; but the scriptures say if any bring not this doctrine of Christ as taught by the apostles, let him be accursed. I also remember teaching people things contrary to scriptures, but that didn’t make me any less innocent, even though I taught them without understanding.

    We have the case of Apollos (though not altogether analogous), who had to be rightly tutored, and he yielded to correction. I do not think it is a matter of feeling, rather one of obedience. And it hurts at times.

  34. iBanj,

    It was refreshing to hear your thoughts on PDL. Reading what you have written is what I have said since the first day I picked that book up.

    I have friends who have gone throught the program and said it helped them and I have friends who said they threw the book in the trash before finishing it because it didn’t sit well with their soul.

    I can say this is one book that brings division all on its own.

  35. I think I’m beginning to lern some things afresh here. May be I have always thought being an heretic and a false teacher are one and the same. Phil, can you help on this if there is any difference? Thanks.

    Phil: I’m working on a posting about this very topic….probably next week it will be up…I have something planned for posting this weekend that will make that posting (heretics vs false teachers) make more sense I hope.

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