Gay Marriage Does not Reflect Christ and the Church

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I was shocked to see that in the wake of the SCOTUS 5-4 decision affirming gay marriage as the law of the land, many of my Christian friends pasted the gay flag on their social media profile pictures. People who were once in my church hashtagged #lovewins in their posts. It was sad to see such a gross departure from Scripture and from saving faith.

I have a question for my liberal and progressive Christian friends who not only tolerate gay marriage in their midst, but also celebrate it.

How does a male-male marriage or a female-female marriage reflect the complementary marriage between Christ and the Church?

Which party of the male-male union represents Christ and which one represents the Church?

Which one submits to the other like the Church submits to Christ, and which one sacrificially loves the other like Christ loves the Church?

How can a husband be the head of his husband like Christ is the head of the Church?

Here is how apostle Paul defines marriage roles in Ephesians 5:

22Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. 25Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her

Marriage roles are clearly defined here, and a same-sex marriage cannot fulfill such complementary roles.  Not to mention procreation. Not to mention the unnatural state of such a union. Not to mention the hideousness of the homosexual act.

How can gay marriage have a place in the Christian church when you consider the immorality of the LGBTQ culture? According to research published by CARM.org 28% of homosexual men have had 1,000 or more partners and 43% of homosexual men estimated they had 500 or more partners! How sick is that?

What a gross departure from the committed relationship between Christ and the Church. Christ will never cheat or divorce his beloved Church, and now the so-called Christian LBGTQ movement wants us to adopt this unnatural and immoral same-sex relationship as a representation of Lamb and the Bride?

No way!

I challenge those Christians who support gay marriage to think about this issue. I challenge my friends who posted #lovewins to change it to #lustwins. I challenge all of us to adopt biblical principles in our churches.

PS. How is it that SCOTUS can make a law in the land? I thought they only interpreted existing laws…

Should Pentatonix be Promoted by Christians?

Pentatonix

My social media feeds have been inundated this past month with videos of Christian carols by the band Pentatonix. The first time I saw the Pentatonix video of the carol song “Mary, Did You Know” I was impressed by the vocal talent in the production, but something didn’t seem right. They did not strike me as portraying the image of the average evangelical Christian artist.  It is almost unheard for a Christian artist to be promoted on the world’s stage like this.

Well, thank God for the common grace of Google.

While at least one member of the band publicly claims to be a Christian, two other members are openly gay.  Furthermore the band is active in promoting the LGBTQ agenda.  All this at the same time as taking advantage of the evangelical Christian market which may be their top target in selling albums.

But, hey, it’s a free country and anyone can do what they want as long as they do not break the law and/or hurt others, as the old progressive principle holds. Delight in Truth does not have a problem with Pentatonix and their rebellion against the moral code of Scripture, as much as with the Evangelical crowd which claims to be under the authority of Scripture and who loves Pentatonix.

Dear Christians, if you find the Word of God as inspired and authoritative, please stop buying, promoting, liking, posting, and applauding these Pentatonix videos. Would you listen daily to an openly gay pastor who promotes the LGBTQ lifestyle and preaches “really good?” If no, then why promote Pentatonix?

The false gospel of acceptance has made its way into the church via music and artistic expression, and now we are reaping the consequences. Scripture is being challenged and disregarded on the issue of sexual morality, and especially homosexuality.  Large churches like the Presbyterian Church USA and Evangelical Lutheran Church have blown up over the issue, and the Anglican Church (80 million members) is next.

As time goes by, more and more churches will concede and accept into membership and even ordain those who identify with and practice the LGBTQ lifestyle in open rebellion to Scripture.  On the other hand it has to be this way. As we get closer to the Second Coming of Christ the warning given by apostle Peter stands true: “that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires.”

We must stand true to Scripture. We must stand with those who hold it as authoritative, and not with those who rebel against.

photo by Jiro Schneider

Fuller Seminary, the Progressive?

About Fuller Image

The famous Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California has crossed a line that is becoming increasingly blurry within the lukewarm church today.

The Christian evangelical college has opened its doors to a gay/lesbian student club on campus.  CBN reports that about three dozen students are members in this club, and their mission is to support the  “LGBTQ community at Fuller Seminary,” per their public statement.

Evangelist Charles E. Fuller who founded the school in 1947 must be rolling in his grave by now.

Fuller Seminary like other Christian colleges, is compromising the message of the gospel by endorsing this club.  Fuller is preparing the future wave of evangelists and pastors, and given the current social pressures to “equalize love,” these young ministers-to-be will potentially be swayed to accept the LGBT lifestyle as normative and within scriptural bounds.

Scripture rings true in Romans 1:32 when it tells us that people know God’s decrees (Fuller in this case) and despite knowing God’s decrees they give approval to those who practice such lifestyles, by officially endorsing them.

I am sure there are many born-again students and faculty at Fuller who love God and who are disappointed by this turn of events.  Their school has become a social and political battleground for the progressive wave, and there is not much they can do about it.

Fuller is not alone in this shift.  Azusa Pacific University in California, another Christian college, has been invaded by progressive faculty eager to advance the LGBT agenda.  This trend will continue in the future, and it will encroach even upon conservative churches.

Delight in Truth is writing about this development in order to warn the body of Christ that apostle Paul’s teaching to Timothy regarding the last days stands:

“Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. ” 2 Tim 3:12-13 ESV

image http://www.fuller.edu

Shocking Statement Made by Jesus Applies Today

Social etiquette tells us that it is not very nice to call someone or something satanic.  The term “satanic” describes someone or something who belongs to Satan, or shares in his characteristics.

But our Lord Jesus was not shy in making this shocking statement and calling certain people satanic.  In His conversation with the Pharisees and scribes of His day, Jesus said to them:

John 8:44 “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me!”

Jesus had to be harsh with these hyper-religious people of His day because they were representing Satan’s interests and opposing Jesus’s work of Redemption.  In fact, it was the truth which caused them to not believe!

This is a counterintuitive proposition, but on further analysis it proves the point that Jesus was making.  His opponents did not believe Jesus because He told them the truth, which consequently points to the fact that they belonged to the father of lies.

The same phenomenon is happening today with respect to the truth.

While the Holy Spirit is carrying out His work of Redemption, Satan is also carrying out his work of blinding people with respect to truth.

Not only do we have atheism, agnosticism, and other theisms opposing the Holy Spirit, we now have so-called Christian churches which no longer believe the Bible.  The Evangelical Lutheran Churches of America (4 million members) have just ordained their first openly gay bishop overseer covering a large segment of their church.  The Presbyterian Church USA (1.9 million members) has been accepting openly gay pastors for at least a couple of years.  These are acts of rebellion toward God.

It is a difficult statement to make, but certain members of the apostatic church today are exhibiting satanic behavior, that is they are representing Satan’s interests just like the religious leaders of Jesus’s time.

Delight in Truth is pointing out these developments because the authentic Church, the true Body of Christ across the world needs to realize the rapid decline in faith within the Christian establishment.  Jesus said that these events must occur, and He even wondered if there will be faith on Earth when He returns.

Because of this, the Church must be on guard and remain grounded in biblical truth.

What is the Most Popular Verse in the Bible?

Holy Bible

Growing up in my church, John 3:16 was considered the “golden” verse of the Bible for good reason.  It contains an excellent synopsis of the Gospel.

However, I found interesting data on the most commonly searched Bible verses, and John 3:16 was not at the top of the list.

For example, King James Bible Online received 7 million visits in 2012, and their top searched verse was Psalm 23:4

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”

The next most popular verse was Philippians 4:13:

“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”

John 3:16 came in third place.

It is interesting that even Christians try to focus on themselves, on the old “I,” and attempt to search for verses that will build up self-confidence.  Hopefully the result is confidence in Christ and not the self.

Recently pastor Greg Laurie addressed the issue of the changing popularity of Bible verses, and how John 3:16 is no longer the most popular verse.  In his opinion the most popular verse, even known and used widely by non-Christians, is Matthew 7:1-2:

“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.”  

Greg Laurie was labeled as judgemental for speaking out against gay marriage and the gay social agenda, and these people used the Bible to get back at him.  Ironic how those who do not believe the Bible, will use the Bible when it suits their mood to excuse the sin in their life.

Laurie responded correctly by saying that this verse calls us to not condemn, and that in fact, we are allowed to make a judgement:

“But I am to make judgments in life. Every day, I make judgments. If I am stepping into the street, I look both ways to make sure it is safe. That is a judgment. If I see a dog and decide to pet it, only to change my mind when he suddenly bares his teeth and growls, then that is a judgment.  So I am to make judgments and evaluations as a follower of Jesus Christ. We must make judgments. But we must not condemn.”

The popularity of Bible verses changes with the agenda of men.  Men will use the Bible to accomplish their own goals, and they will use specific verses even to justify their sin.

But the Word of God never changes.

He stays the same yesterday, today  and tomorrow, regardless of His popularity.

The Media Loves the Lukewarm Church

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I  rarely watch TV, but for the first time in a long time I flipped through TV channels recently.

An interesting title caught my attention on Lifetime: “The Preacher’s Daughters.”

Being a PK myself (for those who are not familiar with Christian slang, PK stands for pastor’s kid) I immediately asked if this show will present the good, the bad or the ugly.

I was stunned by what I saw.

The short story is that the show tells the juicy reality drama of teenage daughters of pastors. Some of these are young women who attend their father’s churches, who put on a nice face at church, who lead worship, but who ARE NOT born-again Christians.

They crave the things of the world, mainly the sexual immorality and the acceptance of their worldly friends. As a consequence they are unhappy with the struggle resulting from the preaching they hear at church and what they want to do in their life.

They are ashamed to be seen in public with their church group, and some keep their church friends and “other” friends separate. The show highlights disobedience, issues of premarital sex, drugs, teenage pregnancy, peer pressure, etc… all the things that make reality TV trash.

Some of the girls come from divorced parents and mixed marriages (yes, divorced pastors) and some have sisters who themselves have struggled with sexual immorality.

I cannot help but ask if this is an accurate portrait of the lukewarm church at large. I pray and I hope that it is not. But it is important to realize that the media is quick to point out the bad apples in order to mock Christians and our backwards biblical beliefs about marriage and sexual abstinence.

The main problem I see in the behavior of teenagers in the show (and in general) is parental disobedience. Circumventing parental controls becomes an elaborate scheme, and it shows the rebellious nature within children and their need for Jesus.

Watching the show for 10 minutes answered my the original question: it was the bad and the ugly, without the good…

But hope is not lost.

These kids attend church where they hear the Gospel, and I pray that the Holy Spirit will do His work on them and regenerate them.

image credit: ichoosegospel

The Seeker-Friendly Church and Chreasters

Pastor Ed Young of Fellowship Church in Grapevine, Texas, holds a lamb near a cage with a live lion during his Easter Wild sermon on April 8, 2012.

First off, lets define the terms.

“Chreaster” – an urban neologism meant to designate those who attend worship services only on Christmas and Easter.

The seeker-friendly church – a movement that tries to reach out to the unsaved by using unorthodox methods to attract them into the church environment.  These include state of the art audio-video technology, grand stage presence, entertaining shows, and rehearsed concert type worship; very common in larger churches with deep pockets.

The problem with the seeker approach to evangelism is that the Gospel is not always the epicenter of the affair.  The unsaved are targeted using elements from the world to draw them in: a great show, a rock concert, a motivational speech, etc.  The Gospel is then squeezed in hopefully at an opportune moment, but unfortunately, in many seeker environments the Gospel is diluted due to its unpopularity.

A message of repentance becomes one of love, and it is true, God is love, but He is also a consuming fire.  A message that should denounce sin becomes one of acceptance, and so forth.  And exclusivity via Jesus is rarely preached.

Here are some worrisome examples.

Controversial mega-church pastor Ed Young who is the author of the book Sexperiment, is also a trend-setter in the world of fashion and a contributor to pastorfashion.com.  During last year’s Easter show he wore a metro-sexual outfit while showing a live lion and a lamb on the stage of his church.  Needless to say animal rights folks were not happy.

Is that how the Gospel should be preached?

In another shocking example, Bay Area Fellowship, the largest church in Corpus Christi, was giving away flat-screen televisions, skateboards, Fender guitars, furniture and cars a couple of years ago at their Easter service.  Image how many were drawn to that kind of giveaway.  I sincerely hope they heard a message of repentance somewhere in there.

I’m not saying that giving away free stuff is inherently bad.  I’m saying that Chreasters and people from the world are drawn to these churches for the wrong reasons.

Many of us are worried that these churches are not ministering to Chreasters in a Gospel-directed way.  If the church competes with the world and its lights and sounds, the church will always lose.  There is no competition when it comes to performing worldly things… the church makes itself look foolish when it tries to one-up the world by putting on entertainment shows.

Delight in Truth friend and follower Gabi Bogdan said it best on the topic of seeker friendly churches when he said that rock n’ roll is made for the world and Christians are terrible at rock ‘n roll!

There is no sense in using elements from the world to present the Gospel.

Chreasters know the message of the Gospel, but this message may have not yet fully convicted them.

A seeker-friendly approach will not help convict them either, it will just draw them for the wrong reasons.

image credit

Will You Attend an Easter Service?

That was the question that Life Way Research asked 1,060 adults in a recent survey.

The results are perplexing because only about half of professing Christians said yes.

The Resurrection Day celebration is the greatest event in the Christian calendar (no, Christmas is not the biggest Christian holiday), and these results are  a sign of the lukewarm state of the church in this country.

Only 57% of Catholics, 58% of Protestants and 45% of non-denominational Christians said YES, they plan on attending church on Easter.

Where is the joy? Where is the anticipation of celebration? Where is the anticipation of the Second Coming of Christ and the resurrection of the dead?

Awaken us Lord, from this terrible slumber!

Survey: One in Five Americans Undecided About Easter Church AttendanceSurvey: One in Five Americans Undecided About Easter Church Attendance

Farewell, Rob Bell

Following the release of Rob Bell’s book “Love Wins” back in 2011, pastor and theologian John Piper apparently foresaw the spiritual downward spiral that the popular pastor was about to undertake.

At the time, to the surprise of some, Piper tweeted this phrase: “Farewell, Rob Bell.

Two years later we realize that perhaps Piper prophesied, or at least made a very well-educated guess with respect to Bell’s future.

Bell made the talk show rounds denying all accusations of universalism (the doctrine claiming that all people will eventually end up in heaven), despite the questions and statements he made in his book.  But everything he has done since then shows that he believes in this false doctrine.

What happened to Bell in these past two years is a sad testimony to his fall.  He went from the pinnacle, that is the TIME magazine cover proclaiming him one of the most popular pastors in America, to loosing his Mars Hill pastorship (he claims he left at his own initiative) and toward failed attempts at putting together a TV show in Los Angeles.

But more sad is the fact that his true colors, perhaps rainbow colors, became evident this week.  He now fully affirms the love between homosexual couples and supports gay marriage.

Said Bell: “Yes, I am for marriage. I am for fidelity. I am for love, whether it’s a man and a woman, a woman and a woman, a man and a man. I think the ship has sailed and I think that the church needs to just … this is the world that we are living in and we need to affirm people wherever they are.”

Taken in the context of “other ways of knowing God” described in his YouTube ad for his brand new book, we now have a totally different gospel, and likely a totally different religion than Christianity.

Rob Bell had time to repent and come to the cross and affirm Christ as the only possible means to the Father and to eternal life.  He chose instead to spiral further into heresy.  I still hope he comes to the cross and receives Jesus as Lord of his life, and recognizes Jesus as the only Mediator between man and God.

Until then… Farewell, Rob Bell…

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Rick Warren and the New Pope

Super popular Saddleback mega church pastor Rick Warren has become a punching bag for mainstream evangelicals for the things he says in the TV media (which absolutely loves him) and social media.

Warren is famous for making controversial remarks on homosexuality and gay marriage which disappointed many conservative Christians.

In his prayer at the presidential inauguration in 2008 he showed his true syncretic colors when he called Jesus by the unbiblical and false name, the prophet “Isa,” which is the non-diety entity found in Islamic scripture.

Here is the latest puzzling tweet from the ecumenical pastor:

“Join me today in fasting and prayer for the 115 Cardinals seeking God’s Will in a new leader.”

This is coming from an evangelical leader.

Does that mean he thinks that the pope really is The Holy Father, God’s representative here on earth as sustained by Catholic doctrine?

Has Rick Warren asked himself how many of those 115 cardinals were perhaps involved in the sex abuse scandals which have been rocking the Catholic Church over the last couple of decades?

Does Rick Warren agree with the Catholic Church doctrines on salvation by works and by beatitudes, transubstantiation, purgatory (salvation after death), and many other heresies?

Does Rick Warren really think that the 115 cardinals are fulfilling God’s will in this process of electing a pope?

Is Rick Warren really an Evangelical?

Or is he a wolf in sheep’s clothing?