So Nimm Denn Meine Hande...

Friday, March 23, 2007


Okay. I will admit that being at Grace Community Church and dating a girl at Bethlehem has brought me into the "nouveaux reformed" circles and I really like these circles. People in these circles have good theology, actual preaching, mature faith and skill at living (i.e. wisdom). I've had people say "Man, you should meet so-and-so, he's/she's such a godly man/woman" and they actually were godly. (honestly a new experience.)

But, I have also forgotten how bad things get out there and how horrible some people have it, as far as pastors and teachers go. I learned that some buddies from Briercrest are coming through SoCal this weekend and are playing at a local, famous megachurch. Being admittedly not super familiar with this certain church, I decided to check it out. I am currently half watching a streaming video of their service from February 11, 2007 and I cannot believe this ding-dong stand up comedy is somehow supposed to be passing for preaching.

The text is John 17 (whole chapter) and over the course of the hour, he commented for approximately 1 minute on verse 5-9, 11 and verse 24. The whole rest of it was his own completely speculative heresies regarding demonology, the hypostatic union, the trinity, eschatology, missions, soteriology, how salvation is a free gift where "we've got to do our part of the bargain" and he whole end of salvation is getting a weight lifted off our shoulders and going to heaven (*barf*) and every other Christian doctrine. Plus, he's spent around 50% of the time making jokes about AT&T, the silly things kids pray for, his wife's computer, his temper (which is somehow excused), his bad fashion sense, etc. It's honestly stand up comedy that makes a shift onto spiritual topics and then builds up to him getting intense and trying to be convicting.

And according to him, what does John 17:24 mean? According to this guy, it means that life is short and we're on earth for a short season, but "while you're here, while you're passing through earth, could you be my witness?" (direct quote) and "listen to what this anonymous person wrote...this isn't biblical, but I think it applies". Commentary on biblical passages from pop music that talks about how God is "crazy about you"? (Or it would, if the song was sung about God's love for us and not some boy band's love for a girl...sheesh!) What the heck? Talk about NOT seeing the forrest for the trees?

Few things make me actually angry, but garbage psuedo preaching and shallow eisegetical teaching are two of them. Any preacher who stands up in front of thousands and tells jokes, peddles their opinion with prooftexting and doesn't think the Bible is important enough to pay serious attention to is in horrid peril. I honestly fear for that guy having to face an angry God one day and I am so angry that his congregation is getting fed rotten brussel sprouts and told that they're getting steak. If the word of God is not worth actually studying closely and preaching precisely, why even waste time with it?

I cannot fathom someone trying to shepherd the people of God and spending time studying the Bible. Then again, I know that pastors like this don't really study the Bible. From experience I know that many preachers like this spend like 4-6 hours on sermon prep...and you can definitely tell when he says something as idiotic as "The word 'keep' in verse 11 comes from a Greek word which means 'to keep or guard'"...(The word "keep" means "keep"? sheesh...)

Watching that absolute gong ringing dung makes me both really sad for him and his people (for he probably doesn't know any better and his people most likely will never encounter anything different) but also just kranking to prep all the more and only preach the text when I preach at USC on the 19th or April.

"Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth." - 2 Tim 2:15

"In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry." - 2 Tim 4:1-5

Let it rip.

Until Next Time,

The Armchair Theologian

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The big MAMMA!

Well, today I tackled the big mamma, the mother of all questions, the question that Craver and Lee Shelton and Wyatt and everyone else has been buggin' me about. Unfortunately, it's not here. It's over at TheoAmigos. Since I haven't put anything up there in like a millenia, I decided to post it over there. So, go here to read my most recent crazy and flaming heresy. Enjoy!

Until Next Time,

The Armchair Theologian

Monday, March 19, 2007

Some interesting biblical resources on Mormonism...

While I was in the researching mode, I found some interesting stuff on them lovable Mormon rapscallions!

1. The Institute for Religious Research has some fantastic articles and plenty of original source documented resources on understanding and apologetically tackling Mormonism.

Definitely also check out the link entitled "Where does it say that?", which has scans of original source Mormon Documents that present many of the heresies that they try to deny.

2. Utah Lighthouse Ministries is possibly the most scholarly and comprehensive sites dealing with Mormonism. They have several books, posted in their entirety, on their site free of charge.

3. The Mormonism Research Ministry is another great site with tons of info. Lots of articles and concrete stuff to help you sort through your next encounter with LDS missionaries.

Now, there are tons of other resources out there, but a majority of them will either quote these three or have the same data as they do.

Also, if you want to do some of your own research, The Book of Mormon, Doctrines and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price are all entirely available online.

Mormons are so confused and so lost, and I definitely have a spot in my heart for them. I mean, consider this quote (from here) that explains what was accomplished by Christ on the cross:

" On the cross, He allowed Himself to die. His body was then laid in a tomb until He was resurrected and became "the firstfruits of them that slept" (1 Corinthians 15:20). Through His death and Resurrection, He overcame physical death for us all.

Jesus Christ redeems all people from the effects of the Fall. All people who have ever lived on the earth and who ever will live on the earth will be resurrected and brought back into the presence of God to be judged (see 2 Nephi 2:5–10; Helaman 14:15–17). Through the Savior's gift of mercy and redeeming grace, we will all receive the gift of immortality and live forever in glorified, resurrected bodies.

Although we are redeemed unconditionally from the universal effects of the Fall, we are accountable for our own sins..."

Anything wrong with that?

And Mormons try to pass themselves off as Christians...?!?

Until Next Time,

The Armchair Theologian

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Some interesting biblical resources on Islam...

Jay Smith is an apologist for Christianity and an evangelist to Moslems in Britain. If anyone is interested in hearing what a learned and experience Christian (personal friends with Mark Dever from Capitol Hill Baptist Church) has to say about Islam, this is definitely something to check out. I'm guessing this guy will be murdered by the Moslems within the near future, so check him out while he's still around. Some terribly interesting resources folks! Until Next Time,

The Armchair Theologian