In this post will be a brief summary of these two movements and their origins. I’m going to compare them in a way to show how we must continue to obtain a biblical worldview, so as to not stray from the fundamental meaning of scripture. I also want to show by using scripture how both of these movements veer from biblical Christianity, by just simply and precisely quoting scripture, keeping in mind that God never contradicts Himself. I have noticed that when people become born again Christians by grace through faith alone, they tend to jump on the Calvinism or Reformed theology train, especially if they have come out of hyper charismatic movements, liberal religions, or cults. This happened to me, and I am not saying this happens to everyone, but I want to take a look at why this may be happening.
I want to use the IF:Gathering women’s conference to expand on by first point of a liberal church movement. The IF:Gathering was started by Jenny Allen who based the entire conference off of the premise, “If God is real, now what?”
These are the temptations that Jesus faced in the wilderness when the Devil told Jesus in Matthew 4:3 “If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.” And in Matthew 3:6 “If thou be the son of God cast theyself down.” And in the final temptation of the Devil, he takes Jesus to the highest mountain and said he would give Jesus the entire world if he would just worship him. No wonder Satan is wicked and evil!! He had the audacity to tempt God Himself to worship him!!!
Satan said, “If you are God then….”, honestly how deceptive to base a movement about God on whether He even exists or not!!!
The vain ideology of the IF:Gathering, is an ecumenical movement that is bound up in the pragmatic nonsense of the culture, bringing together all types of unbiblical ideologies into Christianity, to form a new movement among evangelicals that brings everyone that says they are Christians together. The speakers are very popular and charismatic. They seem godly and kind, but if you are reading your bible you will be able to spot and discern that they are twisting scripture to push their vision and their purpose. It is very wicked and deceptive. These false teachers have crept into houses, LITERALLY, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lust, as it says in Second Timothy 3:6!!! And these women who have these teachers in their homes are fulfilling the words of God, given to the Apostle Paul that says, “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine: but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” (2 Timothy 4:3-4) And why do false teachers come into the church? Titus 1:10 says, “For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision: Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre’s sake.” If you do some research you will see how much money these women make off of prorogating false doctrine and all their paraphernalia. This is a movement directed at women in their homes all around the world, and it’s all about how you feel and these women do not seem to have a firm grasp of the entirety of the gospel, and they are not workmen, studying to show themselves approved unto God, needing to not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. If Jenny Allen was reading her Bible and taking it seriously she would not be inviting false teachers to her “gathering.” (Not all are false teachers) This is an example of liberal “Christianity” and is not based on the Word of God.
Reformed theology and Calvinism on the other hand is quite the opposite in their doctrine, and this is why it can be so appealing to those of us who have come out of false religions and heretical movements. As a complement to the reformed community, they do a great job exposing all of these false movements and their teachers and quit accurately. They also believe we are saved by grace through faith alone. Because they are so good at identifying these false movements people assume that all their doctrine is correct and reliable, so they don’t challenge the T.U.L.I.P doctrine that comes from this movement.
Anything that veers from the Bible as Christianity is a movement. As it is with Catholicism so it is with the Reformed movement. Catholicism began at the council of Nicea in 325 AD and Calvinism started in 1519, in Zurich with John Calvin, as to refute the Catholic Church. I’m not going to get into the history of these two events at this time, but I’m just giving the basic beginning to point out these doctrines did not come from the Bible.
As there is a number of liberal/ecumenical women’s conferences, there are a number of women’s reformed conferences. Neither are biblically sound and in my opinion should be avoided.
Reformed doctrine is different in that is is not liberal, which is a great thing, and it’s defiantly not ecumenical. But in some ways it’s exclusive and intolerant of criticism even if you back up your arguments with scripture. Most times they will just say you are an Arminian, which is not correct either. What we should be are Christian’s that base our faith from the entire word of God, in it’s proper context. Each of the doctrines has a founder, Calvinism was from John Calvin, Martin Luther, and Huldrych Zwingli. Arminianism was from Jacobus Arminius. The founder of Christian doctrine is God. And like with Catholics, Calvinist will use creeds they made up with twisted scripture to support their belief system. Calvinist belief that God has already elected or predestined certain people to be in Heaven, better known as the doctrine of election. Knowing the history is important, and I can see why many people who come out of the Catholic cult or other religions would jump to the reformers, because of this event in past history! As our pastor says and I agree, we are not protestants either, we are biblical Christians.
John 3:16 says, “That God so loved THE WORLD, that he gave his only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:17 For God sent NOT his Son into the world to condemn the WORLD; but that the WORLD through him might be saved. (This means everyone on planet earth!)
John18:3 HE (any person) that believeth on him IS NOT condemned: but he (any person) that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (This verse is talking about ALL of us, we are ALL born condemned. Not some are born for Heaven and some are born for Hell, and we must do the work of believing)
2 Peter 3:9 says, “The Lord is not slack concerning his PROMISE, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not will that ANY should perish, but that ALL should come to repentance. (Again God is not electing some for Heaven or Hell)
There are many more scriptures that back this doctrine up that we all have a responsibility to believe. The Calvinist will say we are not capable of our own free will to believe and that we must be born again to even believe in the first place. John 6:28 says, “Then said they(the disciples) unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? John 6:29, Jesus answered and said unto them, “This is the work of God, that ye believe on him who he hath sent.” Calvinist think that people do not have to do anything to be saved and twist this scripture to mean that we can only believe through irresistible grace and it’s ALL the work of God. They also believe in a hyper sovereignty of God that says God picks who will be in Heaven or Hell. But what does Jesus say? The only “work” we have to do is to repent and believe.
It is very true that we can never do anything to save ourselves, none of our good works could ever save us! But the only work that can save is belief or faith. If you try to get into Heaven any other way then believing on the Lord Jesus Christ you have a different Gospel! You are not saved. And if you have faith as the size of a mustard seed, it can move mountains! But God is not going to force you to believe, this is up to you, to believe and receive the free gift of grace and you can also reject the free gift of grace. A Calvinists would say belief is a work and therefore this is a different Gospel. That is not what God’s Word says according to John 6:29. I really do think believing can be a very hard thing to do, because unbelievers are so blinded by Satan. I have heard people say, “That’s hard to believe.” But the Bible says it’s a good work and in order to be saved one MUST believe and it’s the only thing that will save you. In contrast, yes God will answer the sincere prayer of an unbeliever to help them to believe, but God is not going to make you believe if you refuse to believe, this is the heretical teaching of Calvinism called irresistible grace. It is clear that throughout all of scripture we have the free will to make choices, God does not force us to do things His way, but does chasten us if we disobey Him, but only for the believer. For the unbeliever there is no chastening from God, he will try and get your attention through your life circumstances to get you to repent and believe, but he will not discipline you as a believer because you will not listen. Your eternal judgement for sinning against Him will be Hell, and it is your choice.
Ephesians 2:8 says for by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. Not of yourself here means you can do nothing but except or have faith to earn God’s favor.
Romans 10:9 That is thou (you) shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, tho shalt be saved.
Some may say I am deliberately leaving out the scripture such as Romans 11:6 or Titus 3:5 I am not ignore them either. They also support the reformed theology of what they say is evidence of their doctrine, I don’t think so, but this post is not about expounding on these verses. I am pointing out the obvious contractions to the TULIP theology that is out there. And God is not a liar, if He says ALL He means ALL. And God is not a monster having many people born just so they have no free will to choose Jesus as their Lord and Savior. That is not a loving God and that is not the God of the Bible.
This false doctrine is confusing and divisive because if taken the wrong way it contradicts so much other doctrine that clearly says each individual person of their own free will must believe. The Holy Spirit definitely gets each person to think about what will happen to them if they die, but the individual must decide for themselves whether they believe on Jesus Christ for salvation. This is the only work they have to do, and it’s a work that God asks us to do in order to be saved. A person can either reject the truth the Holy Spirit is trying to get them to understand or they can pray and ask the Holy Spirit to help their unbelief. There is nothing you can do to receive eternal life except to believe, repent of your sins and accept the free gift of God’s grace by the way of the work Jesus did on the cross.
Romans 16:17-18 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.
1 Corinthians Chapter 1:10-13, to me sums up what these two types of movements are doing, people are following fallible people instead of the infallible word of God.
10 Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.
11 For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.
12 Now this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.
13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?
May we all be PERFECTLY joined together in the same mind and in the same judgement!! Amen
As part of my research on A.R.C churches I decided to go to the Experience Church’s Facebook page to get some more insight about this movement. I also have been wanting to write about Max Lucado and his ecumenical heresies. Watching the women “pastor” at Experience church talk about the pharisees and legalism and reading about Max Lucado, I realized that people who profess to be Christians are mixing up these terms. I myself have been called a legalist or judgmental, so it’s important to define our terms according to the Bible.
Gotquestions.org https://www.gotquestions.org/Bible-Christian-legalism.html has a good explaination of this. In my words it’s were someone makes up their own rules of righteousness that the Bible never addresses as righteousness. For example, playing cards is not a sin, but gambling your hard earned money away is. Ephesians 4:28 says,”Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.” Proverbs 15:27 Whoever is greedy for unjust gain troubles his own household, but he who hates bribes will live, and of coarse that tells us greediness and covetousness is a sin. Gambling usually benefits the person who owns the casinos, not the person who is squandering their money, both people are greedy and want to get money quickly.
Another form of legalism is traditions and rituals, if you are doing them to gain some kind of holiness and expect others to do the same then you are a legalist. The pharisees were upset with Jesus because people were not washing before they went in to eat, for them this was a ritual that brought some kind of holiness. (some people seem to still act this way sometimes lol!!) Many churches do these types of things from having a liturgical calendars and creeds, to confessing your sins to a priest, lighting candles, and even communion and baptism can become legalistic if you are not careful. It’s not a sin to do these things, but if you are doing them for the wrong reasons it’s wrong and sinful at the most, and unnecessary at the least. If you think you become right in God’s eyes by doing these things or more holy because you are doing these things you ARE NOT a Christian. Christians are saved by grace through faith ALONE, and the same with our holiness, it’s ONLY by God’s grace. No wonder some people think Christianity is boring, there is no room for the Holy Spirit to work in someone’s life when all you do is mechanical, ritualistic, and legalistic.
Now let’s get to my main point! Many, Many, Many Christians are exchanging what God calls sin for legalism. This is heresy. They will down play sound doctrine and misrepresent unity.
👎Max Lucado– No. He recently embraced Jen Hatmaker as a guest on her podcast. He has preached at Lakewood (Joel Osteen), affirmed Bill Johnson (Bethel), endorses Beth Moore, wrote the foreword for Christine Caine’s book, Undaunted, etc. And the church Max pastors, Oak Hills Church, is egalitarian. In 2021, he threw the Bible and the church under the bus by apologizing to the homosexual community.
And then there’s this quote from Max during an interview with Preaching.com: I really enjoy listening to Joel Osteen. I think Joel has a unique assignment in his ministry, and that’s to cast a wide net. He’s got a different assignment and a different gift mix than, for example, a John MacArthur; and I enjoy listening to John MacArthur equally; but you can see that they’re two different types of preaching. I enjoy Joel because I think his assignment in ministry is to encourage people, and we live in a day that is so discouraged, discouraging. I enjoy John MacArthur because I think—it seems to me—his assignment is to equip the church with very detailed biblical understanding. He’d be more like a Beth Moore or a David Jeremiah; I think we need that, as well. https://michellelesley.com/tag/max-lucado/ If any of you know these famous Christians you will know way this is a horrible statement.
Here is a quote from Lucado about the Church of Christ “Lucado said he represents a ‘movement of grace’ in the Churches of Christ, ‘a move away from legalism.’ https://www.wayoflife.org/reports/max-lucados-heresies-and-ecumenical-confusion.php While its good to move away from leagalism, this is not what Lucado is speaking about, he is talking about ignoring what the Bible says about sin and how God wants His church set up. Lucado especially ignores the roll of men and women in the church and recently he is NOT calling homosexuality a sin. He has an ecumenical stance on Christian Unity, and ignores sound doctrine and dismisses God’s Word as being all authoritative.
Now lets go over to Experience Church with “Pastor” Justiena Brownlee. On a Facebook from Experience Church on March 1st, 2021, if you are interested in what I am talking about, she basically said Jesus didn’t go around judging people. She did say that He is the perfect judge, but didn’t say anything about sin or why Jesus had to die on the cross. She was trying to point out that Jesus was not a legalist, insinuating that Jesus never called out sin, which she never says. Browlee quoted Jesus as saying, “I will take your judgment so you can have mercy.” First off judgment is not a sin if done biblically and secondly Jesus didn’t die because we are judgmental. The Bible, God”s Holy Word, tells us to judge!!! But to do it rightly. My guess she is preaching this because she doesn’t want to be held accountable to God’s Word for being a women pastor.
“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.Matthew 7:1-5
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. 16 But 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. 17 If 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. These are the words of Jesus, clearly Jesus wants us to call out sin especially sin in the church.
As with Lucado and Brownlee as well as many others, they have made sinning as to legalizim therefore bringing in destructive heresies. Heresy is a belief or an opinion contrary to sound doctrine. If a person lives in unrepentant sin and does not ask Jesus to forgive them from it, they will spend eternity in Hell, mostly likely because this is not the fruit of a true Christian, meaning they need to be born again. God is not okay with Christians living in sin. Women usurping the male authority in the church or in her home, if married is a sin. I had to repent of this when Jesus saved me, I was running my home. And homosexulity is called an abomination in God’s eyes and can not be practiced by a born again Christian.
When it comes to the Christian life it’s important to test all our thoughts, decisions, and actions to the Word of God. I can attest that the more you are reading your Bible the more you will love the Lord and you will begin to love what He loves and hate what He hates. In essence you will start to become more like the Lord and grow in love for Him and His ways.
Psalm 11:5 says, “The Lord trieth the righteous:but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.”
If you are a born again believer the Lord will try you as the Psalm says. Meaning you are going to get a test. Sometimes the testing is very trying and difficult other times it’s like a pop quiz, easy if you have done your homework.
What is our homework? 2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
Your homework is to STUDY, just like a student in school. Why do you study? To show yourself approved unto God. God is the schoolmaster and we are trying to please Him because we love Him. Have you ever wanted to please someone because they loved you so much that you didn’t want to let them down? This should be our attitude towards God. So that when we do get that pop quiz we will not be ashamed because we failed God. And when we fail God, the reality is we also let others down. Now the Lord is also a forgiving God, and He will forgive us when we do fail/sin, but this is not my main point. The last point I would like to make pertaining to this passage is asking yourself, “Am I rightly handling God’s word of TRUTH?”
I don’t know about you, but I really hate feeling ashamed of something I have done that I know is not right, but the fact is that we should. God still loves us even when we sin, but it’s what we do with that sin that tells us if we are growing in our Christian walk. If we refuse to feel ashamed and explain it away, we are being nothing but prideful. We may say things to make other’s feel badly, as if they are to blame for our sinful behavior, we might say, well it doesn’t cause me to stumble and it’s just what I like to do, it’s my personality, in other words, I was just born this way baby! I’m sure you have heard that before, if you are paying attention to the culture. You many twist scripture and say things like, “well I guess I shouldn’t eat shell fish, or mix my fabrics in my clothing. or I guess we shouldn’t observe Easter or Christmas because of it’s pagan roots? I would admit it’s good to examine the roots of our holidays and consider whether or not this would bother or conscience and then make decisions accordingly. But what am about to address is not about the pagan roots of celebrating the Messiah’s birth or Resurrection, but just plan sin.
Here are my thoughts…
I find it very disturbing when professing Christians entertain themselves with things that God says are a sin and an abomination. We can all agree that watching pornography, r-rated films, horror movies, movies that glorifying drunkness, drug use, sex or violence are things we should avoid. (at least most professing Christians) But for some reason when it comes to witch craft, sorcery and magic and things of the occult we give it a pass. Why? Because we make excuses and say, “Oh it’s just make believe, it’s not real.” Would we apply this logic to anything else I just listed? No, but the reality is you are right it’s not real, what these actors are doing, is that they are acting. Actors are not actually getting high or drunk as they are acting out a scene, they are not actually murdering someone, or in most cases they are not actually having sex with the person in the movie (although some have actually crossed that line, and in order to do this actors actually have to be intoxicated to do so, because it weighs on their conscience so much) Why then do we give witch craft and sorcery a pass? If, as a Christian I was asked to play a witch or wizard and cast spells, if I do have the Holy Spirit in me this should be very offensive to me. 1 Thessalonians 5:22 says, “Abstain from ALL appearances of evil.” Psalm 101:2-3, “I will behave myself wisely in a perfect way. O when wilt thou come unto me? I will walk within my house with a perfect heart. I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me.” We are not even supposed to set wicked things before our eyes!!! Our Lord knows what is good for us and He wants what is best for us. If we do not heed this counsel we are just asking for trouble from the devil himself.
We must be so diligent, dear Christian. As in 2 Timothy chapter 3:2-4, there is a part of the verse I would like to point out. In the last days men shall…be despisers of those that are good, traitors, highminded, and lovers of pleasure. Are you angry with those who are lovers of good? Are you the one that is the traitor or highminded, thinking you are better than others? Are you a LOVER OF PLEASURE?
When you entertain yourself with wickness you are pleasuring yourself, it’s exciting and stimulating, it’s cool and hip. You are just going along with the crowd and you are not seperating yourself. It’s FUN and probably relaxing.
I do have a rule of thumb that may help us if we would like to watch something and it’s very simple. Does the movie portray the sin as something fun and acceptable, something we should be pursuing? Is the purpose to glorify the sin or to make it look wrong or evil. Or if the person dressed as that character, are they portraying the antagonist or protagonist? And when it comes to witch craft their is not such thing as good magic or bad magic, it’s all bad, but Hollywood likes to distort this. Not only with magic, but with many other sins.
Finally lets go back to Psalm 11:5…but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth. It’s not enough to repent of doing wicked things, but to also repent of your LOVE for wick things. You many not be participating but if you have the desire for sinful things you are just as guilty and should be ashamed. And if you are the one that is causing other’s to stumble you should not be surprised if others do not want to be around you. You are the one that is offensive to the believer that is trying to honor the Lord, not the other way around. But for some reason many Christian’s try to make the person who is just trying to do what the Bible says as the bad guy.
I hope this is helpful, and I pray not only will I take heed to this truth, but others also 🙂
ARC stands for Association of Related Churches, I’m going to add to this and say other churches that flow down the same stream of ideology. There are many churches in America that mimic these churches even if they are not part of the ARC, association.
When I moved here to Northwest Ohio, it seemed to me people where clamoring for our church attendance. Every time I met someone they would ask, “where do you go to church?” It’s great to invite people to church, but looking back on my story, I wonder really what the motive was? The last proposition was not long ago. The lure was that they had lots of children at their church with fun things to do. I thanked her for the invite, but I really like the church I attend.
When I became a born again Christian, it was important that my children were in a doctrinally sound church, not that it was fun. There is not a lot of children at the church we attend, but the doctrine is sound and we are truly learning to be disciples of Christ. We wanted our children to be in a Bible believing church. This does not mean we don’t have fun, it’s that it’s not the focus. In my opinion, many parents look for churches with lots of programs and games, with a little bit of Bible teaching; or they look for a church that all their friends and family attend, so to not disrupt their lives. And if I am honest, I also did the same thing before I was saved. This is a grave mistake parents make, and many children walk away from their faith, because it was never there to begin with.
So what is so attractive about ARC or churches like it?
- In these churches lost people feel comfortable because they do not say, “Are you sure you are a Christian?”
- They don’t share the complete gospel.
- This churches are exciting, with lots of young people and are emotionally driven
- They don’t sing hymns and have lots of new songs
- They put unregenerate people into ministry
- They have platforms and stages, not pulpits and alters.
- They like to do a lot of good for the community, making the people involved feel like they are doing something good also
- They have women pastors
- They scout young people to be the faces of they church, or people who can keep up a worldly appearance
- Young people are running the youth groups
- Small groups are not about studying God’s Word, they are about bettering the community, games, food, crafts, ect….
- Topical preaching on making yourself, marriage, and family life better. No expository preaching!
- No church discipline
- You can interpret the Bible how ever you want, for YOU. No stance on doctrine
- The music style fits the popular music of the day
THE BIG PULL SUMMED UP!
- They want to make a difference in their communities, with no gospel
- The music
Here is a link to the fasted growing churches in America in 2020. Andy Stanley’s church is first and that should say it all if you know what he teaches.
I personally get very tired of the contemporary church, as difficult as this is I will continue to expose the falsehoods of bad theology and practices, with God’s grace and His all sufficient Word…The Holy Bible. Most of the time I feel like my head is going to explode listening to these “cool hipster” pastors and watching their worldly practices. They are so far from Biblical Christianity, that if a person get’s saved in a church like this, it not because of the convicting preaching, but in spite of it, as the case with me. I must also confess, I have a very difficult time understanding why any person would want to attend such worldly churches if they are truly are a Christian. I never know whether to evangelize these people or treat them like brethren. It has been said, by a very prominent pastor, that about 5% of people are probably actually Christians that sit in the “sanctuary” (I mean the multi-purpose room) every week. We are going to take a look at the ARC church movement, and put it under the lens, of Biblical Christianity. There are some (A.R.C) churches that are listed on their website in our area, and unfortunately churches that are not listed seem to be following the same business model as these (A.R.C) churches.
So what is an A.R.C church? ARC stands for the Association of Related Churches. This is a church organization, a business model used to plant churches. Their vision as stated straight from their website
WE ARE AN ASSOCIATION OF RELATIONAL CHURCHES WORKING WITH CHURCH PLANTERS AND CHURCH LEADERS TO PROVIDE SUPPORT, GUIDANCE AND RESOURCES TO LAUNCH AND GROW LIFE-GIVING CHURCHES.arcchurches.com
The motto “Life giving church” has nothing to do with Jesus and his sacrifice on the cross for our sins. Life giving has nothing to do with Jesus’s blood being poured out as a living sacrifice for the wickedness of man. It has nothing to do with repenting of your sins, or obeying the Lord. Instead, it’s more about the branding of your church and getting your church’s name out in the community. It’s about all the good works your church does for the community and how wonderful you are. There is no glory given to God. None
The above video is the perfect example of what the A.R.C organization is all about.
He talks about uncertainty being whether or not their is going to be a Big 1O this year with football, not the down grade of culture.
They are all about the experience of church, rather than sound doctrine.
They have women pastors, which goes against scripture.
Twists scripture a lot!!!
They do keep track of the numbers, statistics, in order to receive support from A.R.C. Folks this is a pyramid ponzi scheme business!
They brag about how much they are giving to the community.
No bible out
Dream Teams all volunteers that do not get paid nothing, like the Mormon church
The church is growing because of our dream team?!
Cool muscle shirts and very nice looking people, that seem perfect.
Motivational speaking. No talk of sin or Hell and how wicked we are. (I do want to say this pastor in the video did mention Hell and Sin briefly.)
EVERYONE is welcome no matter what. When you have a relationship with Jesus then you become a member of the Experience Church. And if you are not a believer that’s okay too.
The full gospel is not preached.
Everyone is needed. But not in the way the Bible says. Works based religion.
All kinds of translations of bibles including The Passion Translation, (which is to me avoided like the plague!)
The pastors vision with a very tight knitted together group of people that agree on this vision, and can not be criticized.
God’s big Dream
They reinstate pastors after they disqualify themselves
Twist scripture, especially Ephesians 3:20 to make God a dreamer that will give you what you want
Here is the video of the reason for this church planing business
These are just a few things that are the problem with these types of churches. I am going to be writing a series on this, hopfully it will make people wake up.
God Bless 🙂
This topic has been on my mind for a while and it has really bothered me. On social media many people like to use use different types of tests, including myself, to explain who they are to the world. Recently I have been convicted by the Holy Spirit, that as a Christian, I should not be playing these types of games. Why? Because the Bible tells me who I am and how I should be conducting myself. Many times these personality tests either stroke our egos or they explain away our sinful nature.
For example, I played the Name Test Game to prove my point, the title says, “Everyone has a brutally honest motto. Tap on a Christmas Ornament to see yours!
My motto said, “She runs on caffeine, sarcasm, and inappropriate thoughts.” I could post this and laugh it off, because it is true, I do drink coffee, and I can be sarcastic, and sometimes I do have inappropriate thoughts. But are these things Christ like? Are these things “funny” to God? No, they are not in any way part of the fruit of the Spirit! Which is love, joy, peace, patients, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. The Bible says, I am to cast down all imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. And a man can not live off of coffee (I mean bread) alone but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. So why do we play these silly games? I know why I did. I wanted to stroke my ego or explain away my sin.
Then there is the problem that sometimes when you take the personality test, you do not like what it says or you disagree with it, so you keep playing until you get what you want. You are trying to stroke your ego and your pride. We all have personalities but it should always be compared in light of scripture.
In her article Kelly Givens says,
And so we must see our personalities through the lens of the fruit of the Spirit. In other words, it’s okay to be an introvert until we use our introverted tendencies as an excuse to back out of obligations (unfaithful) or ignore/snub others (unkind). (Full disclosure, this is me. I struggle with this, big time).
It’s okay for to be an extrovert until we use our extroverted tendencies as an excuse to mindlessly talk someone’s ear off (lacking self-control) or steamroll others in decisions (lacking gentleness).
It’s okay to have a sarcastic sense of humor until we use it to cut others down (lacking love). It’s okay to be wired a little more cynically than others until we disparage them for their cheerfulness (lacking joy).
To whatever degree I use my personality as an excuse for a lack of the fruit of the Spirit should indicate to me that I’m being driven by selfishness and ego and not transformed and walking in the Spirit.
If we are comparing ourselves to what Facebook says instead of what scripture says then we have got it backwards. We need to repent and change, to be more Christ like.
Today we are going to continue on this topic of the unfined preacher, addressing the “vision.”
“Is your palette so unrefined because of your preaching you have to entertain them or get them occupied with your vision?” (Pastor Adrian Rogers)
First let’s look at what it actually means to have “vision” according to the Bible. In Proverbs 29:18 it says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.” Some may think this applies to leadership, but a closer look shows it to mean something completely different. https://www.gotquestions.org/without-vision-people-perish.html
It is true that having a direction to go can be helpful to getting you to where you would like to be, but Proverbs 29:18 is not about having a business or a ministry vision. It is about God’s revelation, dream, or prophecy. Lack of vision therefor is the lack of God’s revelatory word. https://www.gotquestions.org/without-vision-people-perish.html
I have been in many false churches and the biggest thing they have in common is their visions and plans. The pastor’s preaching is so unrefined they have “visions” for their Sunday Sermons, rather than expository preaching of God’s Word. They mishandle God’s word in order to fit their vision and imaginations. Or the leadership “castes a vision” onto their congregation, you can read about it here: https://bereanresearch.org/how-dan-southerlands-seeker-strategy-shapeshifted-the-church/
Some examples of these visions are; feeding the poor, capital campaigns, community meals, potlucks and fellowship after the services are emphasised over the preaching of God’s Word, emphasis on experiences over sound doctrine, getting rid of church language, such as “testimonies” or “being born again,” getting rid of the language of church services into “worship gatherings,” instead of sanctuary you have the “worship center,” preaching on slogans such as, “Love Jesus the Most,” “Jesus is More,” “Imagine,” small group meetings are highly encouraged not for educational purposes but for relational purposes, vision casting, purpose driven, social justice, liturgy, or traditions.
An unrefined preacher’s mission is to just except anyone and everyone for who ever they are, without biblical unity or true biblical reconciliation. Unrefined preachers never preach about false teachers or false movements in Christianity, or they ignore passages of the Bible because they think they are irrelevant for today.
Unrefined preachers have only a few messages. They preach the same topics over and over, because they have no idea how to handle God’s Word. They focus on their own preferences and their own ideas. They usually do not communicate the full Gospel and try really hard not to offend people with God’s Word.
An unrefined preacher will scoff at Bible prophecy and not find the Word of God sufficient for a Christian’s life. They will put the Bible aside to preach on a man made book. The unrefined preacher will say things like; the Bible is just allegory, or that certain doctrine is not for today, we are progressing as a society, so that doctrine does not apply. They may twist God’s Word into a pretzel to accommodate anything they want to promote.
The unrefined preacher does not have a biblical perspective to what it really means to have a Proverbs 29:18 ministry. When it says that “the people perish” where their is not vision means almost exactly what it says. It means “to loosen” and thus to “to expose or uncover.” The people start to live with out restraint. The unrefined preacher will lead their congregation into sin by ignoring or avoiding certain parts of God’s Word. When people are not constrained by the Word of God, they will start to go their own way and ignore God’s directives. Eventually, an unrestrained church will be loosed, and ignore the way of life, of Romans 6:23, for the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus or Lord.
If you are in a church that has an unrefined pastor, run as quickly as you can, far away! It has been my experience that these men do not care to take correction or they explain away the Word of God. They are to be marked and avoided.
Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.
What does it mean that without vision the people perish? https://www.gotquestions.org/without-vision-people-perish.html
Seeker Sensitive Church https://bereanresearch.org/how-dan-southerlands-seeker-strategy-shapeshifted-the-church/
Part One of the Unrefined Preacher https://atruthmomma.com/2020/12/03/the-unrefined-preacher-part-1/
Listening to Adrian Rogers the other day, I was convicted to write this post about the unrefined preacher because it is something I see all the time.
Pastor Rogers said, “Is your palette so unrefined because of your preaching you have to entertain them or get them occupied with your vision?”
I thought to myself, that is a great point! Today I’m going to focus on the Entainment Preacher. Does your church spend lots of money on stage back drops, lighting, or band equipment? How about a roller coaster!? Or a sermon series on Harry Potter, or even a movie sermon series with movie clips, despite the rating of the movie?! Has your church ever drove cars on the stage as a sermon prop? What about a circus? A sports event? How about glitter and smoke? Does your church use repetitive music with hypnotising sounds? Or any other thing that is strictly for entertainment? What about labyrinths or a big library full of books with false teachers? Coffee bar or in some cases a alcohol bar? If so you are in a messed up church! Your pastor is an unrefined preacher that does not know how to rightly handle God’s Holy Word.
15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.2 Timothy 2:15
There is nothing wrong with using an illustration or telling a joke, but if you are spending all your time and energy wasting the Lord’s money and time on entertaining people and making church into an experience rather than studying God”s Word to teach people about God and how they should live a holy life as a Christian, you my friend are in the wrong “profession.” In fact, if you treat your job as a pastor as your business endeavor you better get out to the pulpit, because you are not called to be a pastor. You are a charleton, a wolf in sheep’s clothing. I say this as a warning to you because the Bible says,
My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation.James 3:1
If, as a teacher of God’s Word, you are miss handling it by saying things like, this is outdated, this is not for today, we don’t need the Old Testament, or everyone can have their own private interpretation of scripture, you are in a gross error! And God’s Word has something to say to you! It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of a living God!
20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.2 Peter 1:20-21
31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.Hebrews 10″31
Ask yourself if their is anything in God’s Word that states we should be conducting our churches in this way? Did the apostles show any example in the Bible of making your church into an entertainment driven church? Who is church for? What is the churches job? The church,s budget should go mostly to missions not to buying a bunch of stage drops and lights. It’s okay to decorate your church for Christmas or other things, but your money should not be spent on these things over sharing the gospel.
For those of you who are in a church like this, the Bible also has something to say to you.
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth and shall be turned unto fables.2 Timothy 4:3
If you are going to a church to have your ears tickled, meaning wanting your ego stroked, and you will not endure or put up with sound teaching….well you are not a Christian at all, repent and believe!! The reason I personally can say this is because I was this person going to these types of churches. Voddie Baucham once said, “If you can’t say Amen you ought to say ouch!” In other words, be sanctified by the preaching of God’s Word!