Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Those who call themselves Christians...

Something that has been on my mind for some time now seems to have appeared in blogdom. At Pyromaniac, Phil Johnson mentioned the fact that a man like T.D. Jakes made TIME magazine's list of the top most influential evangelicals in the USA. At FROM THE HEAD OF THE MOOR, Jonathan Moorhead blogged two very good and interesting blog messages on T.D. Jakes and also Tommy Tenney.This is a subject that is very dear to my heart. To read a bit more about what I have written about a Oneness pentecostal's views, please visit my article called GWEN SHAMBLIN’S BELIEF ABOUT THE TRINITY: A REBUTTAL.
It simply amazes me how many churches today, notably charismatic churches, have accepted the books, videos and CDs of both Jakes and Tenney. A very popular singing group--Philips, Craig and Dean (PCD)--is also very popular here in South Africa. A very good article about their doctrine was written by Eric Nielsen at Alpha and Omega Ministries.
What concerns me is that churches simply do not care about issues like this. Neither do Christian radio stations. Some time ago I brought the issue of PCD's theology up at a local Christian radio station with proper documentation, such as that from Eric Nielsen. At least the radio station was willing to study the issue. However, about a week or so later they decided that PCD had no doctrinal errors concerning the Godhead! This points to the fact that people at Christian radio stations--in this case a man with a degree in theology--are confused about the doctrine of the Trinity or perhaps they just don't care.
A large local church with 6000+ members is also a large purveyor of the materials of Jakes, Tenney and PCD. The problem however, is that this church (at least in doctrinal statement) is orthodox. How is it that a church (in this case with about 20 pastors) can have such an explosive theological issue slip past them? Is it perhaps that such things are not checked out? Or, perhaps such things just don't matter anymore? Maybe it is more important to be in with the hot moving crowd in the church growth movement and seeker sensitive churches!
The fact is that I do believe these churches no longer understand what the important doctrines of the church are! They no longer know how to distinguish between real Christians and Christians in name only.
I believe this calls for a reformation in the church today. It is time we stop calling for revival! Revival to what? What is the use if the church at large is devoid of the truth of God. It will simply be revival to erroneous doctrine! There can be no revival or worship of God without the truth of God. The fact is that a god that is only interested in relationship cannot be trusted, since trust can only be based on truth; without which true relationship cannot exist! How arrogant of the modern church to think that it can define who God is and how doctrines should be defined! It is because of this overweening attitude of the church that they can no longer recognize truth!
The church wants worship that can reach God, but worship bereft of truth is not just empty worship, it is useless worship. It is a worship rejected by God.
What is the deal anyway with these churches and their animadversion against theology and doctrine? The fact is, that if you have any theology at all, you might as well take the time and energy to have good solid Biblical theology. Yet, even those who attack theology and doctrine, indeed have their own theology and doctrine. To despise theology and doctrine, is to despise the very God of the Bible! Why do I say this? Any thought you have concerning God reveals your own theology and doctrine. Once you have read a verse of Scripture and made a pronouncement on what you believe concerning that verse, you have formulated theology and doctrine. You cannot detach theology and doctrine from your faith. The very fact that you have a thought (any thought) about God, reveals the fact that you have theology and doctrine. You cannot for a moment think that your thought processes about God can be autonomous from theology and doctrine. You are only fooling yourself!
It is time that the true church stands up once again (like the church in the days of Athanasius) against false doctrine and call a spade a spade!
Can someone who does not believe in the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity indeed be called a Christian, never mind being called an evangelical?
Just thinking...

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Culture of Death Arriving in South Africa?

After the Terri Shiavo debacle in the USA, it seems that many have learnt nothing from what happened there.
It seems like the idea of euthanasia is going to start becoming an issue here in South Africa. In an article at the South African online news service www.news24.co.za called Don't let elderly suffer, the common arguments for euthanasia are being promoted in a very euphemistic way.
By mentioning the recent debate in the USA--which specifically refers to the debate around Terri Shiavo--it is clear that this article does not refer to natural passive euthanasia, which means withholding unnatural life support to allow a person's death. However, this article may be about simply making the last days of the dying more comfortable. Yet, the common arguments of euthanasia are used. An article like this will probably kick off the debate about euthanasia.
The usual arguments are used, i.e. not prolonging suffering, ageing population, increase in chronic diseases, higher medical expenditure.
Without repeating myself and boring the readers to death, rather read my blog message called Killing people using euphemisms.
This is a matter of great concern to all Christians across the world. It is worth voicing our opinions concerning the matter!
Just thinking...

Friday, July 15, 2005

South Africa and racism

South Africa has been an example to the world since 1994 on how to deal with different races and so-called racism. This is of course from the rest of the world's point of view.
However, the latest issue coming up in South Africa is that a year service may be in the pipeline for new teachers. Teachers are already so well under-paid in South Africa; now with this service year, it will even be worse. I have a major issue with this idea, but that is not what this blog message is about.
Racism is alive and well in South Africa. Even in the department of education. Education director-general Duncan Hindle yesterday said one issue in South African education is the "whitening" of the education profession. "Whitening?" One would think that after the big hoo-haa of the "first" democratic elections in South Africa in 1994 that after 11 years of "democracy" statements like these would be on the decrease. Yet, it seems to me that their is no waning of the racist card! Hindle said an increasing number of mainly white female students had studied teaching in the past couple of years. For this he wants some type of balance. The fact is that he is simply making racist comments. If they wanted balance they should have thought of making teaching a viable profession. It is almost impossible for a teacher on his or her own to make a living in this country. Housing and cars are ridiculously expensive while household goods like food and appliances just keep on growing in price. Public transport still remains a dangerous option to consider.
With the government's push of people of "colour" above "whites" in many high powered positions, it doesn't take a genius to figure out that someone with no heart for the education of children would want to sit with 40 children--not one's own--with the little pay that teachers are getting. A woman of "colour" would rather go where there is better pay, since she is likely to get such a position instead of the "whiteys," than live on the edge of survival!
It takes someone with a heart for children and their education to put up with the hardships of teaching 40 undisciplined children and low pay. I do not know about the ideas of black women, but among white women, teaching has always been a profession of honour and most of these women had a heart for teaching children.
Instead of racist remarks like Hindle's, it would be better to give parents the tools of bringing up their children with a love for other people, and so create a culture of wanting to see our children grow up better educated. In this way, among all race groups, youngsters might once again reconsider the profession of teaching, since they would have a heart for others and see the benefits of teaching children.
It is time to stop preferring one race over another. As a nation South Africa should work together to create a people that can live together in harmony with high levels of tolerance. By looking for quotas in the workplace, hate will be engendered in the hearts of those who are losing out in the deal. It simply means that not all people are equal in the eyes of the law.
The question is: "Does the current ANC government see all its people as equal, or do they with some slight of hand make some people more equal than others?"
Just thinking...

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

ACLU and religion

In a recent case brought by the "infamous" ACLU (American [un]Civil [suppression] Liberties Union)--sorry for all the typos here--U.S. District Judge Blanche Manning Has ruled that the Pentagon may no longer sponsor a Boy Scout jamboree which is held every four years. This decision is just part of a long battle by the ACLU against not only the Boy Scouts, but any American institution with the tiniest inkling towards religion.
Isn't it amazing how such an organization as the ACLU with all that money and power behind it could be so scared of little boys and organizations that believe that God exists. They are not an organization concerned with truth, civility or liberty. Anything they perceive that looks like God simply has to be removed from the public square. Why? Do they really think that if they "remove" God from the public square that they would be less culpable for the lives they live and the terror they spread in the hearts of law abiding citizens through their sidekick-cronies, the liberal judges? If they believe that God does not exist, why are they so scared of Him?
The ACLU are like an ostrich that sticks his head in the ground and then thinks that nobody can see him and that nobody else exists. By checking God at the door of the public square they think that He no longer matters.
But..., think again!
Wishing God away doesn't make Him go away. An eternity after the ACLU and the people that run it have ceased to exist, God will still be there, running the universe He has created!
Just thinking...

Friday, July 01, 2005


I just finished reading a novel by the name of Progeny, authored by Martha D. Ogburn, a few days ago. It deals with three areas of great concern to Christians: abortion, cloning and embryonic stem cell research.
A student, Rachel, is studying at university in the area of journalism. While there she meets Matt, a medical student who studies under the infamous Dr. Robert Chan.
Matt and Rachel marries during college and Rachel becomes pregnant. Matt feels that his future is at stake and discusses it with Dr. Chan. Chan gets Matt to send Rachel to him since he also doubles up as an obstetrician. Soon after her visit to Chan she experiences a miscarriage.
Later, Chan, with contacts in China, moves on to start his own research facility to find cures for rare diseases and illnesses. Matt becomes a very respected psychiatrist while Rachel just doesn't seem to cope with life. She has recurring nightmares which Matt thinks should be treated with medicine. Rachel keeps going backward in her psychological life and Matt is just about to pull his hair out!
Then..., the coincidence of a life time happens. Matt and Rachel just climbed off a plane at the airport when Rachel walks past a girl of around 16 that looks exactly like her. This starts the ball rolling and Rachel starts a hunt to find out about the truth of this girl that looks just like her.
Althought this is a book that really reads fast (I am a sloooowww reader), and which I find to be an excellent novel, it makes one think about the issues surrounding abortion, cloning and embryonic stem cell research. This book probes the areas of fetal tissue research and reproductive medicine in a very clever way.
The book is fast paced in its story line and there was no time during the book that I felt that I was losing track of the story or that I felt that I was bored.
Progeny shows how evil the world of "baby traffic" has become. This book is a definite to read!
Just thinking...
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