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CLICK HERE FOR THE FREE, TRUE GOSPEL MADE AVAILABLE TO ALL NATIONS WITH SUNLIGHT--FOR A WITNESS Scripture says that those rejecting baptism are treacherous: they call Jesus Christ a liar.
Max Lucado Face Lift for Churches of ChristA Pentecostal taught him about prayer. A Baptist taught him about grace. A Catholic taught him about the tenderness of Jesus. See how the false teaching has infected most of the once-Christian Schools:
Lipscomb Summer Celebration 2008: featuring the most virulent change agents along with Randy Harris, Gary Holloway and Rhonda Lowry: Growing Deeper: a look at contemplative spiritual. That is the common grade of the new age OCULTISM.
HOW TO PAGAN PROOF YOUR CHURCH: YOU MUST HAVE THIS BOOK IN YOUR LIBRARY.
Johannes Quasten, verifies all of our claims that NEO-PAGANISM infiltrates all Music-Centered churches.
CLICK TO REVIEW OF BUY THE BOOK.
Music & Wiorship in Pagan and Christian Antiquity
Too bad that Max Lucado missed the entire Bible about Grace. For instance, he might have learned that The Book of the Covenant as a covenant of Grace was broken at Mount Sinai by the Israelites "rising up to play" in a return to the Babylonian, Egyptian or Canaanite Musical Idolarty.
See notes on Cosmic Christimas to show that it is essentially the worship of the SUN who was represented along with Saturn (Chiun) at Mount Sinai as the Starry Host God abandoned Israel to when they fell back into musical idolatry. Saturn in Chaldee has the number 666. Max Lucado is reviewed and compared to S.U.N. to be worshiped as the S.O.N. God according to Rubel Shelly. See on Shamash.
Some of this is repeated as more specific Baptizing Santa and the S.U.N.
Stephen was murdered in part for denying that God lived in houses or was worshiped with the works of men's hands:
And they made a calf in those days, and offered sacrifice unto the idol, and rejoiced in the works of their own hands. Acts 7:41
Then God turned, and gave them up to worship the host of heaven; as it is written in the book of the prophets, O ye house of Israel, have ye offered to me slain beasts and sacrifices by the space of forty years in the wilderness? Acts 7:42
"Then God turned away from them and gave them up, and let them serve the sun, moon, and stars as their gods! In the book of Amos' prophecies the Lord God asks, 'Was it to me you were sacrificing during those forty years in the desert, Israel? Acts 7:42LIV
In grasping the BAPTIST form of grace Max REJECTS THE COUNSEL OF GOD in dispensing grace through the means of water baptism. CHRISTIAN baptism is based on what Jesus Christ HAS DONE for us: Baptist or pagan baptism is based on OUR PLEDGE of what WE intend to do for the church. See more on Believer's Baptism which is identical to ancient Pagan Baptism.
Part One: The Thief on the Cross Saved without Baptism! No: Christ had not yet preached to the pre- Cross faithful nor ascended into heaven.
Part Two: Baptism is just a pledge that you have been saved? No: Baptism is our REQUEST TO God; not OUR guaranteeing OUR faith!
Part Three: Salvation by Trust Only or Prayer Only? 12/5/02 See how the GA, Shelly, Lucado Trithism as A Family of Gods leads naturally to despising the counsel of the human Jesus and how Baptists Baptism denies that Christ came FULLY in the flesh.
Part Four: Romans 6: Baptism DOES NOT save?
Max has also by association endorsed SPEAKING IN TONGUES from his charismatic friends.
"Kalla ma sone, da fa kooka shores. It kin da la key la shone da la kene (his voice becomes hoarse and is reduced to an indistinguishable whisper). Bear fose sone ta wentta lone (voice trails off into a whisper again). Da lotta tongue de cush--a--wong do so coo toe. Ah shon da ba she dees ... O. Lord, your good ... Gash a la mon sewer. El ah ma she sa (more whispering). Fa kon a la ma dorman begetta see de so lawsuit...
The tape ends with some meaningless and worthless "prophecies" by Rusty.
The giddy and the gullible bought into it. The Belmont church became Finto's church and ceased
to be known as a Church of Christ. He gathered leftover hippies, street people, the cynical, the cranky, the kooky, the amused, the wrong--headed, and the unseeing. The building was once again full-full of people, full of frivolity, full of nonsense. It rocked along, but most thought it was too irregular to be taken seriously.
Now, fast--forward to April 22, 1997. The scene: A Nashville Hotel banquet room. The purpose: To get Nashville ready of the 1997 Jubilee. The chairman of the meeting: Rubel Shelly, preacher for the Woodmont Hills Church in Nashville. The speaker: Max Lucado, preacher for the Oak Hills Church in San Antonio. An honored guest: Don Finto, preacher for the Belmont Church in Nashville.
We would have thought Don Finto far too aberrant to be taken seriously by Lucado and Shelly, but both these men endorsed Finto that day. (This program was recorded and the words of approval and praise for the apostate Don Finto preserved.)
Rubel Shelly, who has a doctorate from Vanderbilt, asked Don Finto to bless the food-not that Finto would ask God to bless the food, but that Finto would bless it (Shelly made this statement three times). The speaker of the hour, Max Lucado, in his introduction, said, "Don Finto is my hero." So, there you have Shelly, Lucado, and Finto-birds of a feather flocking together. These men-Shelly and Lucado-are either as much of a goose as Finto, or they are laughing in their sleeves. I cannot tell which. In either case, it is inexcusable.
By Paul R. Buckley
The Dallas Morning News
Max Lucado has heard the joke. Of course he has
A guy goes to heaven. St. Peter gives him the tour, stopping at room after room of various believers: Baptists here, Methodists there, and Catholics over yonder. Tiptoeing past the last room and shushing the wide-eyed newcomer, the great saint whispers:
"And there are the Church of Christ folks. They don't think anybody else is here."
Yes, this is an old joke largely invented by preachers to judgmentally bite the hand what feeds them. Preachers on the church of Christ payroll are the most prone to make stab wounds into the body of Christ. And of course, The Dallass Morning News suggests that this joke doesn't apply to other groups!
If you are a reader of history and the web you will understand that after Catholicism, churches of Christ come in for many, many charges of being Campbellites (that would sentence you to hell), with being legalists (that would sentence you to hell) and increasingly being a cult.
Harold Bloom in The American Religion:
 become God's "last" and "only hope" for evangelizing the world according to New Testament principles. Its numerical, financial, and spiritual growth, as well as its evangelistic zeal, was evidence of God's blessing on its ministry, its mission, and its method.
Schism would mean the death of the myth, so schism must be avoided at all cost. Nothing could be allowed to deter the South's most southern denomination from it's calling to redeem itself and win the ultimate battle against evil. This passion for triumph, for spiritual and numerical success among Southern Baptists, cannot be understood apart from the surrender at Appomattox. (God's Last and Only Hope , p. 13)
It is a leap forward from the antimission agitation of the early decades of nineteenth-century Baptist religion in the South, to the actual rise of Southern Baptists
as the Established Church of the Old South, and then of the Confederacy and Reconstruction and on into our own day.
Pragmatically, Graves was the precursor of the rightist Texans who now exercise Fundamentalist control of the Southern Baptist Convention, because he inverted the Inner Light doctrine of the spirit's autonomy. Each local church, in Graves's view, had the authority to dictate belief to its own members. Landmarkism, which was still strong after the Civil War, left a legacy of dogmatism and triumphalism highly inimical to Baptist soul liberty, a legacy taken up by today's Fundamentalists.
The Baptist then and now believe that THEY are the uniquely saved people and that churches of Christ are CULTS.
The Baptists still fight against THOUGHT. Therefore, it is not a surprise that Max Lucado, the BAPTIST in theology tells the OLD, TIRED LIE.
All people believe in their religion or they would be something else. Judgment day depends will be severe to those who do not believe what the preach, or deliberately try to Blow Winds of Change just so they can write a book called Navigating the Winds of Change.
Max Lucado: It's an old one, but Max Lucado still laughs because he knows as well as anyone the Church of Christ's no-one's-saved-but-us reputation. He's a Church of Christ minister, after all, as well as the hottest Christian writer around.
That is being pretty judgmental. However, the obverse side of the same coin is to say that everyone who calls God "Father" is saved. Its the same old judgmentalism but one which gets you a bigger audience.
And he believes that there really are Baptists, Methodists, and Catholics in those other rooms.
Judgmentalism begins when you try to guess which rooms hold which groups. Harold Bloom together with a knowledge of ancient and modern Gnosticism grasps that the Mormons and Babtists are UNIQUELY AMERICAN RELIGIONS which he says has little in common with historic Christianity. The Baptist BELIEVER'S BAPTISM in fact was invented for Christians in 1525 by Zwingli who confessed tha this view, the correct view, had never been understand in the previous centuries. The baptism is much like ancient pagan baptism.
Max Lucado, an easygoing man of simple faith, has done what no other Church of Christ minister has done. He has become an immensely popular figure outside the tight circle of his own tradition.
His books and his participation in Promise Keepers have put him in a league with evangelicals such as Charles Swindoll and James Dobson.
Sure gone further than Elijah or Ezekiel or Jeremiah or Jesus or Paul. Don't you really worry when your theology has a wide and popular appeal? The gospel has always been a scandal and those who preach it scandalized, abused and even murdered. The message is that those who preach and practice the message of Jesus "will suffer persecution." That is a supernatural sign.
But not all of Lucado's own Church of Christ brethren are rejoicing. Some fear that the readers who've made him so popular -- a multidenominational lot -- are going to hell. And, to their dismay, they also know that more and more Church of Christ members are thinking what he's thinking.
People in the pews, even many preachers, have begun to regard professing Christians at the church down the street as the real thing.
Even if they sing their hymns with organs.
Even if they take Communion quarterly rather than weekly.
Even if they were sprinkled rather than dipped.
"So much for the three primary, comprehensive and all-important ordinances of the christian religion; the particular and individual observance of which, constitute the religion of every real christian. Here let its pause a little, reflect, and compare these ordinances, in their proper and primitive import, order and connexion, as above deduced from the holy scriptures,
and contrast them with the present views and practice--with the dull, listless, formal, ceremonious--nay,
even superstitious and absurd formalities, which have almost every where, taken place of these.
"What is the sprinkling of a few drops of water upon the face of a thoughtless, unconscious infant, when contrasted with the all-important significancy, and blissful effects of that first great ordinance of christian worship--that first constitutional act of the obedience of faith. Courteous reader, do but reflect, compare, and consider.
"Laying aside all popular prejudice, say which you would choose--the joyous, blissful baptism of the Ethiopian eunuch, or the unauthorized sprinkling of a poor unconscious babe; never to be so much as remembered; and, in consequence of which, it is never after allowed to enjoy this blissful privilege; for which, through the grace of God, it might be duly qualified in due time. Thomas Campbell
Max Lucado on Baptism: Jubilee 98 It just happens that being popular does not guarantee doctrinal correctness. In fact, if we look at all of the Biblical characters we will grasp that being popular almost guarantees that someone has compromised with the world. Too many, according to Paul, see godliness as a means of financial gain.
Winford Claiborne, The International Gospel Hour Notes:
"If I had an extra copy of J.W. Shepherd's Handbook on Baptism (Nashville: Gospel Advocate Company, 1972, third edition), I would send Max Lucado a copy of this great treatise on baptism. Shepherd amassed an enormous amount of information on baptism from dozens and dozens of scholars, including some of the best-known denominational scholars of all time. For example, Shepherd quotes the following words from J.W. Wilmarth, a prominent Baptist scholar:
"To be baptized unto Christ, as the context seems to indicate direction of mind in the act, the result being stated, ye have put on Christ, clothed yourselves with Christ (so to speak), involving the ideas of unity and conformity.
And this is mentioned (as the word 'for' shows) to confirm the preceding statement, 'Ye are all sons of God by faith in Christ Jesus.' Here, then, Faith and Baptism are united (as elsewhere), and united in their relation to adoption, which results in union with Christ. All this, of course, implies Remission" (p. 398). Shepherd copied these revealing remarks from Baptism and Remission in the Baptist Quarterly, July 1877, p. 310.
Albert Barnes was, for many years, the preacher for the First Presbyterian Church of Philadelphia. Barnes' Notes on the New Testament (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1951, a reprint) are in the libraries of thousand and thousands of preachers throughout the world. I shall read two statements from Barnes--one from his commentary on Acts 2:38 and the other on 1 Peter 3:21. Concerning the expression "for the remission of sins," Barnes comments:
"Not merely the sin of crucifying the Messiah, but all sins. There is nothing in baptism itself that can wash away sins. That can be done only by the pardoning mercy of God through the atonement of Christ.
But baptism is expressive of a willingness to be pardoned in that way, and is a solemn declaration of our conviction there is not other way of remission.
He who comes to be baptized, comes with a professed conviction that he is a sinner; and that there is no other way of mercy but in the gospel, and with the professed willingness to comply with the terms of salvation, and to receive it as it is offered through Jesus Christ" (p. 53).
Sure, you judgmentally bash churches of Christ and the rest of the world always loves to go to the matches to see blood.
But it turns out that Max Lucado has to ignore or reinterpret every passage in the Bible in order to agree with those who had their beginning in about 1600.
The shift in thinking that's under way is momentous, born of tensions loosely parallel to those that have racked the Southern Baptists for 20 years. The shift isn't something that Lucado started. He does embody it, however.
No, the shift is always caused by shifters. People would not deny what Jesus said abotu baptism unless some super guru went out preaching that Jesus didn't mean what He said. I am always amazed at how TV pundits are amazed at shifts in their poling when the poles reflect totally what the people have heard from the polesters and spinners. Do you suppose that they forget whether it is the chicken or the egg which comes first?
Fresh Breezes do not blow with a blower. For instance, Rubel Shelly who endorsed Max Lucado's Baptist views of baptism at Jubilee 97 while calling for a new rubber wineskin big enough to include anyone who would register. The themes of Jubilees seem to come right out of the Promise Keepers and Vineyard vocabulary. Now, Rubel wants a fresh breeze to go along with Jubilee 99 featuring Lynn Anderson of Navigating the Winds of Change fame. Unfortunately he appeals to Machiavelli (who appealed to Hitler) to understand why proposed changes don't come as easily as the gurus might think. Click for notes.
If Lucado, the minister at Oak Hills Church of Christ in San Antonio, Texas, lacks the hard edge often associated with his tradition, it isn't for lack of exposure. He grew up in it. He was baptized, at the Parkview Church of Christ in Odessa, Texas, when he was 10.
But "I don't think that a lot of the more strict teachings ever became a part of my DNA," he says.
One of the strictest is the belief that baptism -- by immersion and for the forgiveness of sins -- is an act that saves the soul.
As much as he cherishes baptism, Lucado says, "we are saved by grace."
"Baptism is a response to God's gift, not a way to earn God's gift."
Straw man: no one ever suggested that baptism is a way to earn salvation. Do you suppose that a soft, dull blade cuts just as deeply and cruelly as a sharp edge.
No! We are not saved by grace: we are saved by the blood of Christ. No! We are not saved by the blood of Christ: we are saved by Christ's (God's) plan to come FULLY IN THE FLESH. No! We are not saved by God's coming in the flesh: we are saved by God's eternal purpose. And so foolish men can speak foolish things.
If God can put Himself as FULL DEITY in the man Jesus Christ who was about 98% water isn't it blasphemy to say that God cannot put His full power in HIS COUNSEL which involves water baptism.
You cannot wash away your own sins: God says that HE will do it if you just ask for a "clear conscience" or A holy spirit by being baptised. What greater expression of Grace could Christ rejecters DEMAND?
Why is it that we honor people who are still rebelling against the views taught when they were kids rather than being pro-active and looking to Christ for the answers? Max was mixed up by the preachers of his day who bragged about their ignorance as he may be mixing up people today while bragging about the source of his new theology.
No one believes that the "act" saves and everyone believes that God saves. If anyone believed that the act saves then we could herd everyone into a building and spit on them (as Max's priest friends did while "converting" the Aztecs) or sprinkling water on an unconscious infant and we could save the world. Making the CORE of the gospel just calling God "Father" can erode away to Calvinism where we must not do anything but wait for God to reveal His will to us.
That which saves is obeying that which we believe Jesus taught. That which damns is "rejecting the counsel of God for their lives."
And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John. Luke 7:29
But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him. Luke 7:30
Max Lucado, who is 43, has become the Christian writer of the moment. "His Just Like Jesus" (Word), released in August, tops one best-seller list. "In the Grip of Grace" ranks 10th.
Presbyterians and Baptists and charismatics are reading his books, conversational works full of storytelling that aims to challenge and encourage. Some people even study them in Sunday school. To millions of readers, Max Lucado is the guy who speaks straight to the heart about the love of their heavenly Father.
I just can't read stuff aimed at 8th grade girls (according to a publisher friend). I just love to click through the Bible on my computer had have "new revelations" pop up in my face. I would have to wait half a century to learn from sermons what I can learn in a few hours while listening to the Spirit of Christ.
To his most exacting critics in the Church of Christ, he's a "pseudo Gospel preacher," an ear tickler, a man to be numbered among those who "love not the truth."
Robert Oglesby won't go that far. Oglesby, for 36 years the minister at Waterview Church of Christ in Richardson, Texas, thinks that Lucado's a great writer. As far as he's concerned, no one can beat Lucado when it comes to setting a scene or making a point.
It never should come as a surprise that Satan turns himself into an angel of light. Wherever error is taught, the teacher will be as smooth as silk.
And yet he is cautious. When Oglesby opens his New Testament, he finds verses like this: "Repent and be baptized ... for the remission of sins" (Acts 2:38). When he opens a Max Lucado book, he finds something that less clearly links baptism and forgiveness. It isn't that Oglesby thinks baptism works like magic; it's just what God commands.
One of Lucado's critics is a friend, F. LaGard Smith, who teaches law at Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif. Smith believes that the Churches of Christ are suffering an identity crisis, and he has written a book about it, "Who Is My Brother?" (Cotswold Publishing). The epilogue is an open letter to Lucado that gently takes him to task for sending mixed signals about baptism.
The professor declined to comment about his differences with Lucado, saying that "Who Is My Brother?" is "an in-house book."
His open letter suggests that Lucado is unwittingly leading his readers astray. Lucado has expressed his indebtedness to a range of believers. A Pentecostal taught him about prayer. A Baptist taught him about grace. A Catholic taught him about the tenderness of Jesus.
Too bad that Max wasn't a Bible reader: he could have found out about grace without any help. But grace is charisma. That means power to be conformed to the will of Christ. Those who, like the clergy in Jerusalem, "reject the counsel of God for their lives in not being baptized" simply reject the avenue Christ provided for pouring out His grace. At the same time, Peter says that this is the time when we get a clear conscience. That means "co-perception." We get the spirit or mental disposition of Christ and cannot belittle or explain away baptism. Such misunderstanding of a really simple statement of fact by Jesus and Peter cannot be misunderstood without some powerful help.
Smith feels the same sort of indebtedness, but he cannot easily regard such people -- unimmersed or immersed for wrong reasons -- as Christians. He acknowledges that God has the prerogative to do as he wishes on Judgment Day, but later he urges Lucado to "tell our 'Christian' friends about redemptive, saving baptism. It's you, of all people, they'll listen to!"
Lucado turned down an invitation to write a response that would have been included in the book. He says he might have thought differently if he and Smith had corresponded privately and then decided together to publish their letters.
Otherwise, Lucado says, "I felt it was too staged."
Why wasn't Jubilee 97 and Promise Keepers and Willow Creek and Instrumental music on "none-worship" days a staged event? Isn't that the meaning of sermons and books. I believe that the 10 year old is still rebelling an an escape from personal problems so profound that objective truth seems too harsh to handle. However, you cannot be just like Jesus without getting into the face of believers and quit speaking to the mass meetings where Jesus hid the truth in parable.
Telling the truth is never judgmental.
Max Lucado is pleased that Churches of Christ -- with 2.25 million members, the 16th-largest church body in the United States -- are changing. He senses an "exciting revival." But he is no crusader. He toes nobody's party line. To be a good husband and father, to be a faithful minister to his church, to write well -- those are Lucado's priorities.
You simply cannot be either a good father or minister without delivering the message of Christ as it has been delivered. Remember that Paul preached just Christ and Him crucified to the Corinthians. However, what Max Lucado and the grace-only crew do not have a clue about is that Paul gave a reason: that reason was "because you are still carnal."
The meaning of the gospel and baptism is that you have to have the mind of Christ who proved that an Infinite, Spirit God could put His grace in a body of flesh where Jesus said, "The flesh counts for nothing." (John 6:63). To try to "explain away" baptism means that a person is not only not a good minister he cannot be a Christian. Christ as God Incarnate then had the power to put His forgiveness and grace in connection with a simple act: baptism for the remission of sins. Yes, baptism does the trick because God put His power in it. To deny this is to deny that God had the power to put that Grace in a human body.
Max Lucado: "My call in life has never been to either reform or represent the Churches of Christ," he says. "I don't know how I could represent the Churches of Christ. We're kind of an ill-defined group."
The churches are a "brotherhood" of independent congregations that claim no authority but the Bible. "We speak where the Bible speaks and are silent where the Bible is silent" is a favorite slogan.
Of course, Max Lucado and friend Rubel Shelly deny that the Bible has such authority. They further trash churches of Christ by falsely claiming that the Campbells invented that slogan. However, Bible 101aaa would prove that the Bible itself defines the authority of God's commands, examples and inferences.
Max Lucado: Many members regard their church as nothing more or less than the church of the New Testament, founded by Jesus and restored in these latter days to a doctrinal and practical purity not known since apostolic times.
The American Restoration Movement got rid of the "pastor" system and restored the senior, competent males to be teachers of the flock and the enemies of all wolves with their latest sheep skins. "Evangelist" were sent out to preach the gospel which included baptism and did not become a professional "located" evangelist in an established church. This was true because Jesus fired the temple clergy because they always took away the key to knowledge. Because there was not a single man competent, God would come as His own right arm or mediator or intersessor and teacher. Jesus teaches only to the extent the performers sit down and let Him teach through His Word.
C. Leonard Allen says it's not so simple as all that. Dr. Allen taught theology at Abilene Christian University, a Church of Christ school, for 15 years.
Allen says, in effect, that the church did not depend upon Jesus but upon John Locke. Rather than being a friend of modern preachers who get their messages from Baptists, Catholics or by Experiencing God direclty, John Locke taught that God created mankind with a mind or spirit which is totally adequate to understand the Mind of Christ (Holy Spirit) revealed in the Word of God.
Max Lucado: As an American phenomenon, the Churches of Christ are the fruit of a "restoration movement" that began early last century. According to Allen, its founding fathers were swayed not just by the Apostle Paul but also by the philosopher John Locke, among others.
The result: a tradition that stumbles along with an Enlightenment hangover, claiming all the while to be nothing but a first-century church.
Our guess is that C. Leonard Allen never read John Locke. John Locke ranks over Thomas Jefferson as the Father of our country's civil freedom and freedom from an imposed relition.
John Locke laid out the premise that in order to minimize division and allow for the broadest range of people professing different doctrine to gather together for worship.
The only way to do that, according to John Locke, would be to make that worship depend only upon direct commands from Christ.
To reject John Locke is to reject the notion of "inclusiveness" because whether it is Left Wing or Right Wing, dominant pastors do not want to include those who might rock the boat.
C. Leonard Allen, like most writers, tends to parrot what you often hear from pulpits: Alexander was a follower of John Locke and not Jesus. However, Jonathan Edwards is accused of the same thing. We look at a review of Edwards and Locke HERE
This was also the view of Thomas Campbell. He did not establish an exclusive religion but stripped the worship of everything not absolutely commanded or exampled so that everyone could attend without being offended. This left people perfectly free to believe whatever they wish.
Max Lucado has his own agenda and it is not that of the doctrines held by the majority of people for the last 2,000 years on instrumental music and baptism. To work for a group with which you disagree may be a harder edge than the soft voice reveals.
Still, Allen and Lucado say that even the movement's founders were more ecumenically minded than many 20th-century Churches of Christ. And they like to think that's a part of the tradition they're restoring.
Thomas Campbell, understood the "singing" passages and the fact that Paul defined worship as GIVING HEED TO CHRIST THROUGH HIS WORD. The Campbells saw the church as "A School of Christ." If everyone left their 'DIVERSITIES' at home then everyone could assemble to READ and EXPLAIN the Bible. The church was a synagogue or school of the Bible and not a pagan worship center or a MAKE WORK PROJECT.
Alexander Campbell would preach anywhere people would listen -- and they usually agreed with him and changed. He did not fellowship in a cooperative sense with those who rejected baptism. Nor would he nor any restoration leader, or the denominations out of which they came, have dared to introduce instrumental music as a way to tickle God's ears and "move the worshiper into the presence of God."
Again, Tom Campbell: The Holy Spirit works only through the WORD. See how that is reversed?
> I am not to be understood as objecting to the detection and exposure of a false and unscriptural experience, which, from your words, appears to be the thing intended; for, in your foot note, page 141, you assert, that we are taught, that
"since those gifts have ceased, the. Holy Spirit now operates upon the minds of men only by the word;"
and at the close of said note, you further assert, that "we are positive of one point," namely,
"that the scriptures teach us not the doctrine of physical operations of the Divine Spirit in order to faith."
With these declarations as I understand them, I am quite satisfied; for, since the sacred canon has been completed, it seems to be the general opinion, at least of
all the most eminent Protestant writers that have adverted to this subject,
that we are not to look for any new revelations of the Spirit;
>> and that, of course, his saving operations in the production of faith and repentance, and of every other gracious effect by which we are made partakers of a divine nature, (2 Peter i. 4.)
>> is by the word of truth being put into the mind and written upon the heart, (Heb. viii. 10.) f
or this certainly is one of the exceeding great and precious promises above referred to, (2 Peter i. 4.) by which the Lord has graciously engaged to save his people, (Heb. viii. 10.)
> But, instead of such characters, the debased and stupid practisers of horrid cruelties and abominable idolatries, "do service to them who by nature are no gods." This, all may know to be the present as it most certainly was the ancient state of the heathen world, in the days of the apostles and long before.
Nor can it be shown, that since the gospel was first preached to the nations, from the day of Pentecost, (Acts ii. 1,) until this day,
that any portion of the human family were ever reformed from their idolatries and disgraceful immoralities
by any supposed physical operations of the Holy Spirit without the word.
> That where the word of the truth of the gospel is not published, the Spirit of Christ has nothing to do, is farther evident from John xvi. 3-14, where his reproving or convincing the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment, is confined to his testifying the things concerning Jesus.
In short, his very character as the spirit of Christ, as the spirit of wisdom and revelation, for enlightening, convincing, comforting and establishing, in the knowledge and belief of the truth, is ascribed to him exclusively as revealing and testifying the things concerning Jesus. Compare John xiv. 26, and xvi. 14, 15, with 1 Cor. xii. 3-13, with Eph. i. 13-18, and 1 Pet. i. 10-12, and ii. 18, 19, with Jude 14, 15.
Being "ecumenical" at places like Cane Ridge had the same motives. None of the Baptists, Methodists or Presbyterians came together for a huge love fest. They all came with the motive of converting people away from the others -- sheep stealing if you will. Poor Barton W. Stone knoweth not what hitteth him. How do you steal sheep? Well, the person with the greatest power of mind manipulaion who could create the most outrageous conduct was viewed as the person most in control of "the Holy Spirit."
Even today, you call Max Lucado to Jubilee 97 for the sole purpose of collecting the greatest miscellaneous crowd. When Max is not there next year, the crowd goes away. Or does Max suddenly awaken the sleeping shepherds by trying to wash away baptism?
Life at Oak Hills Church of Christ, where more than half of the members come from other church backgrounds, is decidedly upbeat. Three Sunday morning services draw a total of 2,100 people. The music is contemporary, enthusiastically sung. Although instruments are used during some weeknight services, Sunday worship is strictly a cappella. Communion is observed weekly, as it is in every Church of Christ.
When you silence the instruments a lot of those people will go away. And contemporary songs? What happened to the absolute demand by Paul that singing is not entertainment in the new wineskin method of pagan Corinth; it is teaching the revealed Biblical text (the words of Christ) to one another. I suppose Max Lucado got that from the Charismatics and not from the Bible. Click to see.
And baptism is by immersion.
It is by immersion but it denies the historical definition of the meaning of baptism and falls in line with Baptists doctrine formulated in about 1500 by Zwingli and adopted by John Smyth. It has some distinctly pagan bits and pieces.
The Britannical notes of "believers baptism" "Sometimes the phrase total depravity was used to describe the human condition, though it must be said that the term had connotations in the 16th century that were different from those that it has today. It was used not so much to provide lurid connotations for descriptions of the depth of sin but rather to describe its extent; man as a total being was in trouble.
Even good works, piety, religiousness, and efforts, apart from justification by grace through faith, fell under God's curse.
On the other hand, the justified sinner could be described in the most lavish terms, as one who could be "as Christ" or even sometimes "a Christ."
Lucado sees none of it as an end in itself. It's all about grace, especially for him.
Grace is the power of God's Mind in us to enable us to obey His commandments and be conformed to His image. There is no grace in worshiping and believing the commandments of man. Jesus says that the test is easy: "If you love me you will keep my commandments."
After a decade of successful ministry at Oak Hills and seeing book after book become a best seller, he hasn't forgotten how different life could have been. At 20, he was on the road to alcoholism.
He hasn't forgotten, either, the radio preacher God used to turn things around. Lucado didn't catch the man's name. He doesn't even know what church he belonged to. Could have been Baptist or Pentecostal. It didn't matter.
What mattered was the message, and Lucado, a young college student, had ears to hear.
God forgave him. Lucado is sure of it. God graciously, lovingly, freely forgave, and Lucado is still amazed.
That, he says, is probably what draws people to his books: that sense of being a man forgiven, that wonder at the wideness of God's mercy.
Anyone who understands sin feels the urge to pronounce everyone saved based upon subjective feelings. However, it is never judgmental to tell people what you believe Christ meant when He associated a lack of faith which would lead to baptism as a cause for lostness. Because they didn't get wet? No. Because they rejected the counsel of God for their lives.
Now, being non-judgmental means that everyone can believe what they wish and I have no God-like need to judge them -- that is to pass sentence upon them.
However, faith does not exist when it is not expressed in action doing whatever that which we believe demands and Whom we believe commands.
Agreeing that everyone can get their assignment directly from God is what stops evangelists from going out into all the world.
(c) 1998, The Dallas Morning News.
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Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Information Services.
Reviewed by Kenneth Sublett
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