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I would rather create than destroy, build up rather than tear down, move rather than sit, love rather than hate, live purposefully rather than meander, write rather than stare at an empty page...

Monday, November 20, 2006

We Have Entered Into an Age of Charlatans

Continuing a recent theme, the blame for a marginalized Christianity cannot be laid solely at the door of Liberalism. Christianity has become watered-down, luke-warm, and ineffective primarily due to the men behind the pulpits across America. Many preachers today aren't preaching sin and salvation, choosing instead to preach a feel-good prosperity, and a "why-can't-we-all-just-get-along" message. The only thing wrong with that is such messages don't convict anyone of sin, nor do they urge personal repentance... And no souls are saved.

Jeremiah has a lot to say about such preachers and the ultimate result of their message...

Your iniquities have turned away these things, and your sins have withholden good things from you. For among my people are found wicked men: they lay wait, as he that setteth snares; they set a trap, they catch men. As a cage is full of birds, so are their houses full of deceit: therefore they are become great, and waxen rich. They are waxen fat, they shine: yea, they overpass the deeds of the wicked: they judge not the cause, the cause of the fatherless, yet they prosper; and the right of the needy do they not judge. Shall I not visit for these things? saith the LORD: shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this? A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land; The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?

--Jeremiah 5:25-31

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But this thing commanded I them, saying, Obey my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you. But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear, but walked in the counsels and in the imagination of their evil heart, and went backward, and not forward.

--Jeremiah 7:23-24

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When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and an oblation, I will not accept them: but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence. Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, the prophets say unto them, Ye shall not see the sword, neither shall ye have famine; but I will give you assured peace in this place. Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart.

--Jeremiah 14:12-14

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Mine heart within me is broken because of the prophets; all my bones shake; I am like a drunken man, and like a man whom wine hath overcome, because of the LORD, and because of the words of his holiness. For the land is full of adulterers; for because of swearing the land mourneth; the pleasant places of the wilderness are dried up, and their course is evil, and their force is not right. For both prophet and priest are profane; yea, in my house have I found their wickedness, saith the LORD. Wherefore their way shall be unto them as slippery ways in the darkness: they shall be driven on, and fall therein: for I will bring evil upon them, even the year of their visitation, saith the LORD.

I have heard what the prophets said, that prophesy lies in my name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed. How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies? yea, they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart;

--Jeremiah 23:9-12, 25-26


There are indeed false prophets among us today-- quite a few of them on television --claiming to be what they are not; charlatans who fatten themselves at the expense of a lean and starving multitude. Jesus said such men have their reward. Beware of false prophets. Do not believe simply because the name of Christ rolls so easily off their tongues, for while tithes belong in the local church, if you choose to give above and beyond what God requires, be careful to whom you give it.

20 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

when I read posts like this, I think ... if you change some of the words ... it looks just like something a jihadist wrote.
I begining to feel some christians and muslims worship the same God.... and they both extremists now speaking against what they call "liberals"
sorry if thats offensive to anyone.

November 20, 2006 9:51 AM  
Blogger mom2 said...

I will take God's Word for what it says. He does not have to go "outside the box". Wisdom begins with a fear of the Lord. In the beginning was God.

November 20, 2006 2:03 PM  
Anonymous Solomon said...

Right you are, Tu.

To quote James Mattil:
"Religious fundamentalists are united by fear. Whether they are Christian, Muslim, or Jew, fear is the common denominator. They fear change, modernization and loss of influence. They fear that the young will abandon the churches, mosques and synagogues for physical and material gratification. They fear the influence of mass media and its ability to subvert the young with song, dance, fashion, alcohol, drugs, sex and freedom. They especially fear education if it undermines the teachings of their religion. They fear a future they can’t control, or even comprehend."

(Emphasis mine. The fear of education is obvious in the evolution "controversy" and many other challenges to scientific fact).

More here.

November 20, 2006 7:10 PM  
Blogger ELAshley said...

Let's leave Wikipedia out of it, Sol. It's hardly authoritative.

November 20, 2006 8:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you said it all mom ... fear is THE BEGINING OF WISDOM ...
I'm pretty sure to continue in fear would mean to remain ignorant.
Jesus saved us... and set us free.
I am not afarid, there is no fear in love.... and love is the one thing I seldom feel when reading post like this.
In the begining there was God and he saw what he made was beautiful, He created man and gave him the world as a gift, and made him ruler of it, not a slave to it. we are were made in his image,
put in a position of god not servents .... it made angels jelous.
You need to search for the spirit of God, you are stuck in the old testament.
I have said before ...if laws could have ever saved the jews we would never have needed a saviour.
oh ... and I think Jesus's teaching was pretty "outside the box" they killed him for it.

November 20, 2006 11:40 PM  
Blogger ELAshley said...

"we are were made in his image, put in a position of god not servents .... it made angels jelous."

A position of god? Are you sure? That sounds a lot like what the serpent told Eve... "Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil."

And made angels jealous? Really? Where does it say that? You sure you're not confusing the film Constantine with the Bible? No where does it say the angels were jealous of man. Satan wasn't even jealous of man! No, he was jealous of God, and wanted to be greater than God.

Also, I am not stuck in the Old Testament, I'm merely not inclined to toss it out entirely because God has given us a NEW Testament. Jesus said not one Jot or Tittle of the Law would pass away until ALL things are fulfilled, and that promise extends beyond His thousand year reign on earth, after the tribulation.

I urge you to dust off your bible and read it again.

November 21, 2006 12:15 AM  
Blogger mom2 said...

The fear of the Lord is NOT being afraid, it is an awe of Him and knowing that He is God the Creator and I am only one of His creations. He is the potter, we are the clay.
There is one truth, many lies. I choose truth.

November 21, 2006 11:07 AM  
Anonymous Solomon said...

As with any source, Wikipedia entries should be evaluated case-by-case. In this instance, the passage to which I was referring was both valid and relevant to the conversation.

Fundamentalism is a continuing historical phenomenon, characterized by a sense of embattled alienation in the midst of the surrounding culture, even where the culture may be nominally influenced by the adherents' religion. The term can also refer specifically to the belief that one's religious texts are infallible and historically accurate, despite possible contradiction of these claims by modern scholarship.

November 21, 2006 11:37 AM  
Blogger D.Daddio Al-Ozarka said...

"...despite possible contradiction of these claims by modern scholarship."

Yeah...we have complete faith in modern day scholars, Sol.

(Sigh!)

November 21, 2006 6:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tell the truth...Sounds like some of you guys have been watching a little too much of Rosie O'Donnell lately...Tu,... Sol?

It really cracks me up when liberals compare Fundamentalist Christians with Fundamentalist Muslims, because they don't have a clue what the term "Fundamentalist Christian" means or where it originated.

November 21, 2006 10:02 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

I can't beleieve so many people misinterpret the Word of God. (sigh)

In the Bible, fear of God means "respect for God".

November 22, 2006 8:34 AM  
Blogger Erudite Redneck said...

Ms. Green, ya gotta quit thinking that everyone who disagrees with you disagrees with ya because they don't have the same information you do. It is precisely because I *do* know the origins of the tenets of dispensationalism and Christian fundamentalism that I am no longer a dispensationalist *nor* a Christian fundamentalist in any way, shape, form or fashion.

November 22, 2006 2:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ER, I was actually not referring to you at the moment - you have not even commented on this post. I was referring to statements such as these:

"I begining to feel some christians and muslims worship the same God.... and they both extremists now speaking against what they call 'liberals'"

and

"To quote James Mattil:
'Religious fundamentalists are united by fear. Whether they are Christian, Muslim, or Jew, fear is the common denominator.
"

Both statements above tell me that the authors of both know nothing about what being a Fundamentalist really means. They've bought into the media lies and misinformation about who Fundamentalists are.

I believe you when you say you have a grasp on what Fundamentalism is and that you reject it. I'm sorry that you do though. One on one you are a very cordial, likeable individual, misled though I think you are..(smile)

November 22, 2006 11:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

these comments are funny.
Up until this post I never really ever heard used or thought about the word fundamentalist... so any opinion I have now of it is not one influenced by anything outside of what I learned on my own. I also repeate what ER says...
"quit thinking that everyone who disagrees with you disagrees with ya because they don't have the same information you do. It is precisely because I *do* know the origins of the tenets of dispensationalism and Christian fundamentalism that I am not a dispensationalist *nor* a Christian fundamentalist in any way, shape, form or fashion."

I do have a question from all this... if "fear" means respect or awe to you, why do you use it to "put the fear of God" into people in a way that scares them away from God.

I say all are sinners ... come as you are, and all are welcome to eat and drink. which method brings more to the table? that is the amazing grace of God. It is comfort and good news we are to spread not threats.

November 24, 2006 12:05 AM  
Blogger ELAshley said...

First of all. The term "Dispensationalism" is a relatively new word in terms of theology, but that hardly negates any validity dispensationalism has in terms of Eschatology, and an accurate picture of prophetic history.

I don't know exactly what ER knows, but I do know that many people who scoff at dispensationalism point to John Nelson Darby (1800-1882) as the father of this Eschatological 'theology'. The Rapture, likewise, is vehemently attacked with claims that it originated in vision 1828 vision of a charismatic woman named Margaret MacDonald. But to believe these things one must disbelieve-- or ignore outright --nineteen centuries of evidence to the contrary.

Many even say the word "Rapture" is nowhere to be found in the Bible, and this is true; no English translation contains that word, but the Latin Vulgate written by St. Jerome (circa AD 347-419) does.

As does the Greek. In the Greek 1 Thessalonians 4:17 contains the word "Harpagesometha" from the root verb, "Harpazo" which means 'Suddenly caught up' or, 'to seize or snatch up something suddenly with great force without the consent of the owner'.

In the Latin Vulgate, the word used is "Rapiemur" which means 'Suddenly caught up'

Anyway. Two excellent articles can be found here (.pdf), and here. The first is on 'Rapiemur and Harpazo', a short excerpt from a book written by David W. Lowe. The second is a lengthy piece at RaptureReady entitled, 'The Rapture and John 14' by Thomas Ice.

November 24, 2006 2:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Up until this post I never really ever heard used or thought about the word fundamentalist... so any opinion I have now of it is not one influenced by anything outside of what I learned on my own."

Thank you for proving my point.

"if "fear" means respect or awe to you, why do you use it to "put the fear of God" into people in a way that scares them away from God."

I happen to think hell is a very frightening subject. God is a loving God, but He is also a just God - and all who do not come to Him through Jesus through faith are destined to spend eternity there. Or don't you believe in hell?

November 24, 2006 4:31 PM  
Anonymous Solomon said...

"Thank you for proving my point."

Not sure that proved anything, Ms. G. Your point was that people misuse the term "fundamentalist." I understand your point, but it doesn't apply to Tu. Tu never used the phrase until after your post.

November 25, 2006 1:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Solomon said: “I understand your point, but it doesn't apply to Tu. Tu never used the phrase until after your post.” Actually, it does apply.

#1 What tu said was “Up until this post I never really ever heard used or thought about the word fundamentalist... so any opinion I have now of it is not one influenced by anything outside of what I learned on my own.” – Which in itself is unbelievable – that up until this post he’d never heard the word “fundamentalist” – what planet has he been living on?

#2 He then went on to say “so any opinion I have now of it is not one influenced by anything outside of what I learned on my own.” – so that means, logically, that since he never heard the word before this post, all he knows about the word “fundamentalist” is what he has gleaned from the 11 posts before his.

#3 He then aligns himself with your position by saying “I also repeate what ER says...‘quit thinking that everyone who disagrees with you disagrees with ya because they don't have the same information you do. It is precisely because I *do* know the origins of the tenets of dispensationalism and Christian fundamentalism that I am not a dispensationalist *nor* a Christian fundamentalist in any way, shape, form or fashion.’"

#4 The above then proves my point, which was “…they don't have a clue what the term "Fundamentalist Christian" means or where it originated.”

November 29, 2006 6:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just realized that under #3 of my previous post I incorrectly attributed a quote to Solomon that was actually said by ER.

My apologies ER. Don't want to ever be accused of misquoting anyone.

November 29, 2006 7:11 AM  
Anonymous Solomon said...

Well, without taking the time to look up who first put the words "christian" and "fundamentalist" next to each other in the same sentence, all I can say is phrases like this take on many meanings over time. Ditto for words like "liberal" and "conservative". There is no one definition that is correct in all instances. I was referring to general movements that have obvious parallels in Christianity, Islam, and Judaism, not to to any specific sect.

That said, if you'd like to delve into the origin of the term "Christian Fundamentalist," be my guest.

December 01, 2006 6:31 PM  

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