Lustful Leadership Laws – Kong Hee Style!

First, from the Museum of Idolatry (Thanks Teddy!). Rosborough posts http://www.alittleleaven.com/2010/06/leadership-idol.html ):

Leadership Idol?

To even a casual outside observer it would appear that the latest fad to sweep through the Christian church centers around Leadership. One may argue that this insatiable lust for leadership principles borders on idoltry. Here’s just a sampling of this year’s “Christian” Leadership conferences. Ironically, the “leadership model” taught at these conferences is not the servant leadership that Jesus modeled and taught (John 13:1-11). Instead, these conferences teach the exact same leadership model used by Fortune 500 Corporate CEOs and businesses. This Wall street business model is a top down, vision casting, innovation requiring, absolute loyalty insisting, accountability dodging, and obedience demanding leadership model. This is also the leadership model used by corrupt kings, Popes, Caesars and narcissistic empire builders. Hmmmm.

Too bad the pastors who attend and put on these conferences don’t focus as much energy on rightly handling God’d word and preaching and proclaiming Christ-Centered and Cross-Focused sound doctrine. In fact, many of them are experts in leadership and utter neophytes and nincompoops when it comes to properly teaching the scriptures.

And good example for Chris Rosborough would be Kong Hee.

It is quite clear that Kong Hee (plagiarizing thief and professional hypocrite), is often wayward in his teachings. It is clear he worships leadership. Since I heard that Pringle was getting Kong Hee at the Presence Conference, I looked him up on Google and had started following CheatGrace’s blog since it basically started. Didn’t know what to think until I saw that media were starting to expose him.

(See links here looking into Kong Hee’s plagiarism:

The blog that discovered it: http://cheatgrace.blogspot.com/

http://www.transitioning.org/2010/06/12/pastor-kong-hees-publisher-explains-its-oversight/

http://thelogicalchristian.blogspot.com/2010/06/pastor-kong-hees-publisher-explains-its.html

http://www.transitioning.org/2010/06/12/city-harvest-founder-now-accused-of-plagiarism/

http://churchwarnings.blogspot.com/2010/06/kong-hee-plagiarism-links.html )

In this video, Kong Hee is talking to ALL of the C3 College Students including staff AND Phil and Chris Pringle. It’s interesting to verify if Kong Hee actually spoke at the Fortune 500 event. This sounds like a lie. (Why would the 500 Club have anything to do with him?)

His leadership teaching methods are full of fault anyways. His focus on CEO leadership and his unpractical teachings and dodgy theology should be a major concern to C3 students. Below is also a transcript on all his leadership idolatry in his talk to C3 College:

“You know, what God uses to impress a pagan world is really the quality of life, the standard of living that we have. Because when all is said and done-  now that you have become a Christian, how much better is your life as compared to those outside the four walls of the church? And I love what Dr Phil is trying to bring throughout the whole movement and to all his friends around the world, that our job is to give all our members the ‘best life now’.” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 1, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fkldfgf6cDs: (01:43), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

“So God is saying this [On Deut 4:4]: ‘The Laws of God are so incredible, so complete, so well thought out, if you as a people will follow them, then the world is gonna get envious of you. You will be a lender and not a borrower. In other words, you are going to be successful, you are going to be the head and not the tail, you are going to be wealthy and prosperous. And the truth is, the world will only get impressed by God when they see our wisdom in handling our finances.” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 1, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fkldfgf6cDs: (04:06), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

“Now when I started working after I graduated from university, there was a nineteen eighty eight- a nineteen eighty six  to nineteen eighty eight, I was in a uni doing my computer science. And I basically, pretty much supported myself, through school. So in nineteen eighty six, while I was in a university, I was working, you know as a –in a part time job.

My pay at that point in time, (I believe I shared this before over here, but anything worth listening, is worth listening twice, ha-ha!), I was paid in nineteen eighty six… I was paid six Singapore dollars… [Writes amount on blackboard] per hour. That’s nineteen eighty six! I was working at a desktop computer publishing company. I was a trainee computer scientist, $6 an hour! Now twelve years – uh- fourteen years later, in the year two thousand, by now I’m pastoring a church, (in the year two thousand we have about seven thousand members), I was invited to go to America to speak to a group of five hundred CEO’s and top executives and many of them from the Fortune 500 companies.  The reason they invited me was because they wanted to know, ‘How do you as a non-profit leader, as a non-profit CEO, manage to motivate volunteers for the cost of your vision?’

Because you know the truth is that people in the world, they- I mean the CEO’s of the world, they pay money for people to serve. Yet we give people a vision. They serve free of charge. So they want to know how that we do it. So here I was in a little room. They flew me, my new first class, return ticket, put me in the Suid Hiad [spelling?] Hotel…  They put me in top class accommodation, gave me the best meals available, and I was asked only to speak for3o minutes. I flew all the way to the United States for the thirty minutes. That was all the time they had given for me to speak. And after I’d finished speaking I thought, “Now that’s great!”. I was about to leave. The organizer came. And slipped a check into my hand. And it was US $5000 for hat half hour. [Writes amount on blackboard next to $6]

All right! Big question right? Same guy. Two eyes, one nose, one mouth, two hands, two feet. I have the-  this same person twelve years to fourteen years before. You know I was given the same amount of time. It’s still twenty four hours a day. Things have not changed. Everything remained constant. BUT! What happened? [Refers to blackboard figures]

My pay for half an hour, $5000 US dollars was way, way ahead of the $6 per hour at Singapore I received fourteen years earlier. You see the only thing that has changed [Refers to blackboard figures] is that my value has increased. My value to my listeners, to the people I’m serving, has increased. Now as I increase in my personal value, I increase in my personal worth to the community, to the church, to the people I am trying to help and change. Now what has really transpired in the fourteen years?” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 1, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fkldfgf6cDs: (00:00), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

“So as I increase in my knowledge, in my training  and education, I increase in my value in my worth to society that I’m trying to penetrate.” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 1, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fkldfgf6cDs: (04:16), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

“Training, education are these: vital. In fact 2Corinthians 3:18 says, ‘When you look at the mirror of God’s Word, and you study it by faith’, and that’s the time the Holy Spirit is going to come and change you from glory to glory in the image of Him. The word ‘glory’ means from ‘value’ to ‘value’. This year, when you come to Bible School, you’ve got to have faith. Your value to this church, your value to this movement, your value to your company, to your business, to your community you are serving, is going to change. Your quality of life is going to go up to a whole new level. Come on! Give the Lord a big clap!” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 1, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fkldfgf6cDs: (05:14), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

“This is the mission of the church: we want to give the world a taste of this colourful, progressive, creative God and let them know what He has intended for mankind from the very beginning. Remember, if Adam had not sinned, God would have continued to reveal Himself as Elohim. Adam would continue to be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth and subdue it UNTIL he had total dominion of the whole world, for the glory of God.

But when we begin to live in this [refers to blackboard] level of shallow, sheltered Christianity, [ridicules in pathetic voice], “Oh save me Jesus! Provide for me Jesus! Heal me Jesus! Deliver me! Oh Jesus! Help me! Help me! Help me!” You know- low level Christianity, you become passive, constantly at the mercy of situation, of the economics condition, of the problems and of people.

Your pastor, doctor Phil Pringle and people like me, we are trying to change that in our generation. We want to raise up a new generation [refers to board] of people. Instead of saying, “Save me Jesus!”, we are saying, “Touch me Jesus! Fill me Jesus! Give me a visions and dream Jesus! Let me have your creativity to go there and be an [students and C3 staff and leaders applause] overcomer, problem solver- [1:13 shot of Josh Kelsey & Wife] oh come and give the Lord a big clap! I want to change the society for Christ hallelujah!” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 4, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XlCRLlLcLSE: (00:00-1:20), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

“I want to become more and more like Jesus my Lord, my Saviour. And the way we do that is through discipleship. So I get myself disciple by great men like doctor Phil Pringle, constantly speaking into my life.” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 5, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aYncQHuZnqA: (01:32), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

“Your success depends on your relationships. In fact, any top CEO will tell you that the root to upward mobility is how you relate to people- your people skills. If you are awkward with people, if you are unable to get along with others, you’ll never come to the higher echelon of leadership.  But there’s another reason why relationship is so vital: your character depends upon it. You see the bible says who we spend our time with shape us. How are you going to end up after?- By the end of this year, by the end of the Bible School term will be determined by the thoughts you allow into your mind and the friends you hang out with. That is why I want to hang out around people of faith like Doctor Phil. I mean, you can’t spend a day with him without getting inspired. You can’t spend a day with him without [01:00 shot of Phil and Chris Pringle] thinking bigger, desiring to do greater things for God.

So I hang around people of faith every single week. The church service that you come to is a place to motivate and inspire you. But every time you go for your connect groups, you go for your small groups, is a smaller setting, to build long lasting relationships, where you become successful, happy, your character is changed and you become a balanced believer.” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 5, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TadW8ZUYtEE: (0:11), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

I took these quotes from Kong Hee because he kept associating church leadership with CEO Leadership.

What is biblical leadership? How should it combat false leadership? Should it combat false leadership?


464 thoughts on “Lustful Leadership Laws – Kong Hee Style!

  1. From http://ashepherdsheart.blogspot.com/2010/06/ceo-leadership.html:

    CEO Leadership?

    For at least the last decade there’s been a movement within The Church to model church leadership / government after the structures often found in Fortune 500 companies in place of the model laid out in the Bible.

    Instead of Pastors who are servant leaders like Jesus, you see more of a CEO with an executive board of directors model. Instead of Pastor/Edlers, and Deacons, you see CEO’s, VP’s and Directors.

    Many conferences have sprung up with the latest fad led by keynote speakers who are seen as the sought after or up-and-coming leaders you “just got to be like”, focusing on taking your leadership to the “next level”. Unfortunately many of those conferences do not focus on the Biblical model. They often connected these sessions sometimes about strategies, not necessarily for evangelism and not on how to be a Biblical Shepherd, but how to increase your congregation size. They connect this with leadership as if the size of congregation truly has anything to do with leadership. You can have a small or a large congregation and can either be or not be an effective Biblical leader – size doesn’t matter but the ability to teach God’s Word, your character, your giftedness, your integrity and more are what truly matter.

    I work for a fortune 500 company and I know first hand that there’s a constant push to bring more and more shareholder value (Increased Profits) every year and it’s this same push I see in similar form in the new “leadership” model. In the churches that focus on the new leadership strategies, instead of profits, it’s increased congregations size plus increased giving to build a “business” um, I mean a church congregation/ministry. Granted there are obvious “business” aspect of a church but none-the-less the church isn’t a business as the world would define rather, it is to be about God’s business and we should tirelessly work to make it about Him – Keep the main things the main things!

    Don’t take me wrong, there are some good conferences out there where pastors can glean a lot from in order to be a more effective pastor and we ought to strive to grow continually be a good and effective shepherd as God Has called us to do so. We need to remember that none of this has anything to do with the latest fad or coolest new strategy. Leadership in the church should focus on and should be about the Bible – What God has to say about leadership. Let’s pray that we’d be found doing His will and building His kingdom and not our own.

    In Closing, here’s another Blog entry that speaks to this and gives some examples of some of the conferences that are typically not truly building or raising up the right leadership in the church. Let’s pray that those who choose to attend these conferences will not compromise or sell out to man’s wisdom but stick solely with God’s Wisdom.

    http://www.alittleleaven.com/2010/06/leadership-idol.html

    In Christ,

    rlk

  2. I heard that Kong Hee did some sort of bible school/study under Phil Pringle several years ago and there is some sort of disciple-teacher relationship there. Could be why the local C3 here was going gaga that his church had bought up some big Singapore shopping city/centre. Things became very quiet after the Singapore authorities started investigations into possible violations of Singapore law by him and his church.

    I don’t quite know what to say after I read/hear stuff like this. There’s this core in me that is so disgusted and appalled, I’m lost for words. And then there’s the part of me that’s so outraged the words are tumbling over each other and getting stuck at the exit.

    All I can say is, blindness is a terrible thing.

  3. This article is found on http://www.konghee.com/www/2010/03/chc-new-home-suntec-convention-centre/. If you actually follow the link, you get to see all the commentors saying ‘positive faith-filled comments’. Here is the article that talks about how Hee is focusing on leadership to pull off such a outrageous price for the church building:

    “CHC’s New Home: Suntec Convention Centre

    This is an article about CHC’s new church building that was printed in City News Weekly, March 7, 2010. CNW is a newspaper reporting news from a Christian perspective. With CNW’s permission, I have reproduced the whole article in full below. Enjoy!

    The news is out: City Harvest will be moving to its new premises at Suntec Singapore International Exhibition and Convention Centre by 2011.
    By Theresa Tan

    This has probably been City Harvest Church’s best-kept secret in its 21-year-history. The exact location of the church’s new site has been a hot topic that has kept Christians within and outside the church guessing, since it was confirmed on Jan. 16 that a space had finally been procured after a five-year search.

    Bound by a non-disclosure agreement, the management could not say a word until yesterday afternoon, at the first service of the weekend at the Jurong West church.

    The revelation of Suntec Singapore International Exhibition and Convention Centre met with great excitement from the church congregation. This location would put all the services of the church under one roof.

    “When we were looking for a property, there were three major considerations,” said senior pastor Kong Hee.

    1. Size. “It had to be as big as we can go in our small city-state with limited land. Suntec Convention Centre has a total usable area of more than 1 million sq ft—that is 20 times our Jurong West property and 10 times Expo Hall 8. Suntec has the size we need and can accommodate our traffic.”

    2. Location. “We wanted a place that was central and easy to get to by MRT and bus. CHC members come from all over the island. Suntec is centrally located with three major MRT stations nearby: City Hall MRT is a 10-minute walk; Esplanade MRT and Promenade MRT open this April and are even closer by.”

    3. Facilities. “A church is not just a main sanctuary and nothing else. Having extra facilities is critical to the operations of the church. We need areas for children, rooms for Bible study, car park space and eating places. Suntec Convention Centre has more than 30 meeting rooms, and we will have access to over 8,680 car park lots in the Suntec-Marina area. Between Suntec City and the Convention Centre, there are 283 stalls/restaurants for our members to eat at, and 622 retail stores for our members to shop in.”

    Through this agreement, CHC becomes a co-owner of Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre, and has a share in the annual revenues of all its facilities. The two floors CHC will primarily use are the sixth and seventh floors and include the CHC Auditorium which is column-free and can accommodate up to 12,000 seats. Early plans for this space reveal a stadium-style layout with a sizeable play area for children, and 10 meeting rooms. “All our morning prayer meetings, seminars and conferences will be held here in the future,” explained Kong.

    The other parts of the Convention Centre will be open to the public, and will continue to be rented by third parties for exhibitions, fairs and performances as is currently the case.

    Tan Ye Peng, deputy senior pastor, explains to City News what co-ownership of Suntec Singapore means. “Last year, ARA Asset Management Limited announced that its ARA Harmony Fund had acquired the Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre. Harmony Fund’s investors comprise Suntec REIT, which holds 20 percent, and a consortium that holds 80 percent. CHC has bought a significant stake into the consortium.”

    City Harvest is looking to raise S$310 million, but this sum is not the value of the property, says Tan. “This amount consists of cost of shares; rental; renovation and equipment; professional building, management logistic and maintenance fees; refundable deposits and moving costs.”

    One of the key considerations for this site is the business model that CHC can and will adopt for Suntec Singapore. “For Singapore Expo, we are in a lease-only business model. As such, what is being paid out does not have any returns or profit-sharing for CHC. The Board and the Building Committee discussed and concluded that with an ‘ownership-and-license’ business model, the rent we pay out will be recovered by CHC in the form of profits and dividends.”

    “It’s perfect for our church,” says Tan. “This place has everything we need. It’s been around, it’s an established place. It has been the venue for some of the most important events that ever took place in Singapore, like the APEC CEO Summit last November, and the International Monetary Fund-World Bank meeting in 2006. This August it will be the venue for the 2010 Youth Olympic Games. It’s got all the facilities, and it’s super convenient. There is no other place that allows us this space size in this part of Singapore.”

    In the event that there are such key events on the same scale as the IMF-World Bank meetings, Tan says City Harvest will exercise flexibility and vacate the space for such clients. “We are now part-owners,” he explains. “It benefits us too.” Tan points out that although City Harvest will use the space for its services, the building is still a commercial entity, and technically not a “church building”. “The church will lease the space to use for our services,” explains Tan. “The difference is that we are also co-owners of this building.”

    For Chew Eng Han, who was tasked in 2005 to be the key person on the ground to find out what was available, and to speak to consultants and banks, the success of this partnership with Suntec Singapore is a triumph. “I feel fulfilled,” he declares.

    The search was far from an easy one. “It required a lot of wisdom,” says Chew. “We needed the right location, central yet big enough, yet it could not be too costly, and it had to earn income, too. At the time we were looking, between 2005 and 2008, construction costs were escalating. When the crash came, property prices came down, but finding a partner became a challenge.”

    Suntec Singapore was negotiated at the right time, and agreed upon at the right price, says Chew.
    “It’s the best location because it’s already in existence. Although it may have been around for a number of years, the building is continually being refurbished and in good shape. Since we are not buying a new plot of land, we don’t have the risk of escalating costs—building costs fluctuate. The space is great: it totals over 1 million square feet, the hall is big enough, there are more than 30 meeting rooms and we have access to the Gallery space, and also the 600-seat Theatre on weekends.”

    “It’s an ideal location for City Harvest, really—but at a much lower price than its original cost.” Suntec Singapore was originally built for a price of S$650 million in the early 1990s.

    The best news for the burgeoning congregation may be the fact that with the space already built and available, CHC targets to move in by the end of the first quarter of 2011, once its lease at the Singapore Expo expires.

    Church Really Loves Itself!

    For some, the announcement brought tears of joy. For others, the location was a complete surprise…

    Kong’s wife, singer Sun Ho, flew back to celebrate the announcement together with the church. Moments after the announcement, she tells City News: “I’m standing in a historical moment when miracles have just happened. God has done it again. My heart is overwhelmed, because this is something in which not just Kong and I, but the whole church have sown, labored, prayed, believed and claimed for, for so long. This is the time, this is the moment—we sowed in tears, and now we are really reaping in joy. Above the location, my heart is just so full of gratitude that we are able to build this house for God, for His glory. I’m grateful I can be a part of it.”

    The church will fund the S$310 million through freewill donations from churchgoers. The church building fund, Arise & Build, is into its fifth round, with a target of S$17.3 million. There are eight more Arise & Build campaigns planned.
    Further information on the design and details of the Suntec Singapore location will be released in the coming weeks.”

  4. From http://thesunshineson.wordpress.com/2010/06/06/kong-hees-pastorpreneurship/:

    Kong Hee’s Pastorpreneurship?
    Posted on June 6, 2010 by thesunshineson

    Some are already making jokes about Pastor Kong Hee’s wealth as Kong Hee Fatt Choy. He and his wife has 3 boutiques – Ed Hardy at Heeren, Skin at Great World City and Christian Audigier at Ion. And they didn’t need to draw an income from CHC since 2005 as these businesses are lucrative enough. So lucrative that they can supposedly support his Horizon Towers condo at Leonie Hill District 9 condominium, which costs from $2.8-6.5 million according to Property Guru, and his wife’s residence in Beverly Hills according to rumours.

    Pastorpreneurship is one word I could use to describe this whole rich business pastor church, adjective in that order of priority apparently to Kong Hee if the rumours on him are true and the Youtube videos are to be believed. Pro-Kong Hee supporters, and I suppose not all CHC members are blindly devoted to Kong Hee’s personality cult, would argue that the Devil is making us envious of Kong Hee’s success. More than just faith in the legal principle of innocent until proven guilty, the Kong Hee devotees forget that their pastor is also human and probably exposed to temptation and days in the desert as well. Some have alarmingly insinuated a call to arms as their church is supposedly under siege by the Devil. To CHC’s credit still, a minority of CHC goers acted as the voices of reason, which we shouldn’t be surprised as this constructive introspection has happened before.

    The business of religion
    Sat, Jun 05, 2010
    The New Paper

    GIVE.

    Or as Pastor Kong Hee, the founder of City Harvest Church, put it in one of his many sermons posted online: “Give until tears stream down your eyes.”

    That tithe is collected in churches is not new. But how it is used may have changed over time and that is causing some concern.

    In 2001, eyebrows were raised when New Creation Church bought East Coast Recreation Centre, through its business arm Rock Productions, for over $10 million. Some of the church members had questioned then the use of church funds for investment purposes.

    The church argued then that the business arm is run as a separate entity and that the purchase was in line with the church’s constitution.

    Fast forward to present day.

    City Harvest’s investment in Suntec City – where New Creation Church runs its services – sparked a series of letters to the press.

    Readers also wrote in to The New Paper pointing out that the investment was substantial – City Harvest had invested $310 million.

    Once again, the use of donations, or tithe, for business became an issue among some church members.

    The central issue appears to be the complexity of running a religion as a business. The church’s founder, Mr Kong, also declares that he is a businessman.


  5. It gets worse. I couldn’t even watch all of this without feeling sick inside myself. This youtube video of Kong Hee is truly troubling:

    Now I understand what Jesus meant when he said:

    Matt 23:15 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are.”

    It’s amazing! Phil Pringle has done exactly this to Kong Hee and made him twice as bad!

  6. Watched the youtube clip, the scripture Matt 23:15 came to mind – then reading below clip, saw you had already quoted it!

    It’s like falling into a black hole and landing back at C3.

  7. “The best deceivers are the ones being deceived”

    Are they consciously or unsconciously wicked? Timothy talks of deceiving and being deceived. People who believe their own lie are much better deceivers in that they think they’re hearing from God and that definitely puts them in the “kingdom/dominion theology” category.

  8. Some things for you guys to consider before you pop a vein:

    1. CHC has a membership of around 10-12,000. They need a larger premises to accommodate their growing congregation. In a country as small as Singapore their choices are extremely limited, especially for a premises that size. Where else are they going to go?

    2. How are they going to pay for the new premises except by relying on their congregation? God is not a counterfeiter, He won’t magically produce cash out of thin air. He relies on people like you and I to give to provide. Or do you expect them pay for their church building by selling lamingtons and holding garage sales?

    3. You guys continually harp on about mega-pastors earning large incomes from their churches. Kong Hee doesn’t draw an income from the church but through his businesses and you guys still complain!

    4. You also continually complain about churches using tithes to pay for extravagant conferences etc. CHC, by having part ownership and by drawing income from the Suntec Conference Centre, will no doubt now have the ability to use less of the tithes to support events thereby being able to direct more donated funds towards ministries and more charitable endeavours.

    Specks – “I couldn’t even watch all of this without feeling sick inside myself. ” You mustn’t have a very strong stomach! What was it that sickened you? Was it the slick graphics, the trendy music, or was it the shots of people joyously giving because they believe and agree in the direction the church is going?

    I mean, seriously, you guys sit here complaining about every jot and tittle, every word and sentence, while real Christians are out there doing the actual work of the gospel. You forensically dissect every story, post and rumour with the aim of showing everyone else wrong and you right. You twist scripture and take it out of context to “prove” your shallow points. You all self-righteously talk about the sin of Pride and salaciously give examples of other’s supposed sin, yet you ignore the massive pride you yourselves indulge in in every word and criticism you write.

    Specks, you talk of being sickened by what you saw on that video – I am sickened every time I come here and see everyone’s whinging and complaining based solely on prejudices, ignorance and pride. You all speak as if you alone have the answers to all of the church’s problems. What you don’t realise is that you contribute just as much to the church’s problems as Phil Pringle, Kong Hee, Brian Houston et al! We are imperfect humans living in an imperfect world. What should be important to you is your own walk with God, not some guy’s in a church 2000km away.

    If you are unhappy with the way that churches do things, start your own! Make a difference instead of making a complaint!

    By the way, a disclaimer – I am in no way associated with Kong Hee or CHC. I met him twice and he’s a nice guy but that’s where my knowledge of him ends.

  9. @ TVdude – I highly recommend you start listening to John Piper, R.C. Sproul, John Macarthur, Albert Mohler, Thabiti Anyabwile, etc. These highly esteemed teachers, pastors, theologians will really open your eyes to the Truth of the gospel and how it should be preached/taught.

    Nice guy? Sure. Nice wife? Sure (though rather more than provocative on her music clips i.e. China Wine).

    Nice has nothing to do with the gospel.

  10. @ TVdude – God does not depend on us for ANYTHING. I don’t believe in a tiny, whiny god who sits in heaven wringing his hands waiting for us to do something. Yes the gospel must be preached but His decrees are perfect, His sheep will hear His voice and Jesus will lose none that the Father has given Him.

    I don’t always agree with how Specks comes across – I just don’t get involved in some of the discussions. I also find him to be very agreeably correctable, he has a good heart and a passion for Truth. I’m very grateful to have found a community where we can discuss such things.

    For what it’s worth, my husband and I spent an evening with the Gideons International (an invitation extended to my husband to join that he’s seriously praying about). Can I say how impressed we were?

    These mega-chuches that are so highly thought these days, would be hard-pressed to achieve the results this organisation has. The testimonies of souls won for Christ (and subsequent deaths by some, through various trials), were amazing. One billion bibles distributed since it’s inception in 1899 until 2001. Since then another 600,000 bibles distributed – God is in the business of bringing His sheep into the fold and rather quickly now it seems. Food for thought?

    I’m constantly overwhelmed, since leaving the pentecostal movement i.e. C3, just how truly wonderful God is, how great a Redeemer we have in Christ. Overwhelmed that he chose us in Him before the foundation of the earth. But at the same time saddened at the people we love still caught up in the rat-wheel of works. Constantly have to do, do, do, when it’s been done.

  11. The problem with TVdude is pretty much the same as any professional minister.

    They continually compromise the true gospel message in an effort to “win souls” and becoming so caught up in this mission, their eyes become blinded to the fact that in doing all that they can to be God’s little “chievers, they’ve just undone a whole lot of “truth” and compromised themselves in the process.

    When you begin to take on this sub-cultural pseudo mindset/world-view, you’re then open to pretty much any and all methods to see this through.

    By this stage, doctrine then becomes a petty case of “well that’s your opinion” and a false version of unity becomes the stated goal and is the rug thrown on any contentions that may be bought up. It’s an easy cop-out for the minister and throws the ‘guilt by association’ back on the true Christian.

    Tied in with this is of course the ‘vision casting’ and the deceptive leadership model purported by Pringle, Kong Hee and other CEO style ministers.

    Being united in error is the one thing many of these career ministers can agree on and as TVdude has displayed again and again, he’s not interested in truth (“What would it matter if Oprah wrote the 4th gospel?”), it’s more a case of realizing the goal of numbers and so-called soul winning.

    I believe in my heart these men have traded their true riches for an earthly kingdom of now.

  12. @Teddy – Apparently, God is restricted to moving in our zone and level of faith. God can only do what our levels of faith dictate. That’s the doctrine taught in many WOF circles and among the leadership elite to the plebeians.

    Hence the need for the next conference, the next building fund, the next “leap of faith” (paid for by the congregants mind you) and the next big move of God that will of course be a revival, so saith the career minister.

  13. Ronfire: “I heard that Kong Hee did some sort of bible school/study under Phil Pringle several years ago and there is some sort of disciple-teacher relationship there. Could be why the local C3 here was going gaga that his church had bought up some big Singapore shopping city/centre. Things became very quiet after the Singapore authorities started investigations into possible violations of Singapore law by him and his church.”

    This quote from Phil Pringle is for both Ronfire and TVDude:

    “This message is – it has teaching in it – but more than anything this is what I would call, ‘message of a prophet’; a prophetic message. A message for a time. A message that wasn’t for January… Isn’t for August… It’s for now… Today.

    God has something to say to us today. I’m not good at a lot of things but I’m not bad at getting the timing of the Word of the Lord right. You heard Kong Hee tell you I prophesied over him about five times that he would have Suntek City. He always dismissed it cos it’s an icon of Singapore. It’s in the main. It’s right in the middle. In the heart of the city. And just four weeks ago he signed to purchase that at a price of $310, 000 000. Amen! (Applause) Ahaha! These things come to pass. Ok. So I’m just saying that to ya. And if I get a word, it’s because it’s- and I say this, (you know it’s not because I’m trying to bolster the word or anything like that. I don’t need to do that,), I’m just letting you know the nature of this message is that, this is something that is a ‘Now!’ word for you and me.” – Phil Pringle, (0:30), C3OF, Sunday Night Service, ‘Favour’, 10/06/2010

  14. Prophecy given by Phil Pringle in Australia

    “I believe New Zealand is about to have in 2005 a revival that will eclipse any kind of revival it has ever had in the history of that nation. I believe by the power of the Holy Spirit New Zealand is about to have a touch from Heaven. A touch from Heaven and the finger of God is poised in the heavens. I see it I see lightening bolts coming out of the Long White Cloud. I see feet running through the streets to get to meetings. I see things happening that have never happened before people running to church in New Zealand. I see them running through the streets of Wellington. I see them running down and the wind is blowing. They are pushing against the wind they are trying to get to churches. There are people running in Auckland down Queen Street to get to church. People are running They are desperate, some are full of fear some are full of faith. But they are running to church. This is going to happen in New Zealand 1000’s and 1000’s of people running to church – running It’s probably not ever happened in New Zealand before. Amen, Here endeth that prophecy – Praise God”

    False prophecy = false prophet.

  15. In the Pentecostal church you get a leave pass to practice getting ” prophecy” right. It’s not in the bible but that’s never been a problem. And they have to carry bibles with extra blank pages at the end to add all the extra-biblical “revelation” they download via their personal version of the Holy Spirit. Never what it says at the end of Revelation about not adding to the Word.

  16. It’s late and I’m going to say a few things I wouldn’t ordinarily say. I’ll most likely wake up tomorrow and deeply regret my tone and choice of words but right now, I have to get this off my chest.

    @TVDude, it becomes our business to bother about the walk with God of some guy in a church 2000 kms away when his example is shoved down our throats by our pastors and leaders as the ideal of “what a Christian walk is”…..if you don’t like the complaining, please tell us why he should be emulated?? What exactly is there in this guy that makes me – a believer in the living God – want to be like him?

    Slick music?? Trendy graphics??? Wake up DUDE!! What planet are you on??? If I want slick music or trendy graphics, I’ll give Moby or George Lucas a call, thank you very much. I’m so sorry for saying this, but some of you pastors are so blinded by your own self-importance…..you’re no longer shepherds any more, you’re salesmen peddling a pathetic excuse for the gospel of Christ and counting crowds of adoring yea-sayers and oodles of money as being the sign of God’s approval upon you.

    Instead of feeding the sheep, you’re all busy heaping more and more guilt on them. When they tithe and give “till the tears run down their faces” and their hundred-fold return does not happen as you promised, it’s “their lack of faith”. When you indoctrinate them that “God has to heal because your faith releases Him to act” and they don’t get healed, it’s “their lack of faith”. They DIE for lack of knowledge of who He is, because you’ve taught them to believe in a useless imitation of a ‘god’, who is so weak that he’s unable to do anything without their strength. And when – as he surely will because he does not exist – he fails them, their faith fails. I’ve seen it over and over and over and over again.

    That’s not my God. I’d even say that isn’t the God you believe in either, TVDude, but rest assured that IS the god a lot of the flock believe in – and the responsibility for that lies squarely at the door of the shepherds, because that’s what you’ve taught them. You probably don’t even realise it. You want to know why that’s how it comes across?? Because you teach them YOUR version of God, instead of pointing them to God as He is revealed in Scripture. You don’t teach them to know God by His Spirit through His Word – you teach them to know ‘god’ be becoming faithful little churchgoers ‘serving’ the ‘vision’ and telling them they’re securely in God’s ‘plan’ because they ‘serve’ the church’s ‘vision’. There is no root, no fruit, and no endurance. And then you all get together and agonise over why people leave your churches and come to the conclusion that your ‘services’ are not ‘attractive enough’ and you try and make things ‘slick’ and ‘trendy’ to ‘build an atmosphere’ to keep people in church.

    I’m so tired of bullies and braggarts filling the pulpits of our churches in the 21st century. There’s no difference between you and the CEO of a corporation – the same hustle, the same arrogance, the same drive for ‘excellence’ in money and success – heck, why not just turn churches into companies and make you all CEOs?

    Wait, that’s right – you’ve already done that.

    If you’re unable to see that, then you’re just another one of them TVDude. Just another one of them. When we dare to complain about the travesty that you lot have turned the church into, you have the gall to tell us to go start our own churches! Grow up, please!! Childlikeness is eminently desirable, biblically. Childishness is just pathetic.

    Are you really totally unable to see what’s wrong with this picture of this man and his church in the video above???? You really think this is what the gospel of Christ is – Pinky and the Brain taking over the world, Suntec City by Suntec City????? You’re even blinder than I thought.

  17. @ teddy – very interesting article Teddy,coming from the “younger generation”. There does need to be “substance” not just bells and whistles. The big shows will draw people in, but I think churches would be surprised if they focusing on building relationships, making disciples and really loving one another their churches would grow significantly, and the people would stay because they felt loved. It is the core human need, to be loved, and back 2000 years ago we were told that they would know we were his disciples because of our love for one another. So loving one another and being loved, working together will build a great church.

    I do agree TVdude that the blog can be seen to be tearing down the church, but I would think that most people who stumble across this site do so because they are looking for answers. I know that is why I’m here. Also you do see both sides of the story and that’s not a bad thing. It has been nice to hear other experiences, and know that I’m not alone in what I’ve felt and experienced, and that has released me from alot of fear that I had inside from “my” interpretation of some of the preaching from C3 over many decades.

    Re churches, my personal opinion is that no church is perfect, that the big churches do reach alot of young people and present Christ to them and I pray that God can get in and reveal himself to them. I found though that as I got older, I couldn’t imagine bringing people to church because of many things. ie giving, hype etc. Maybe that is why alot of the older ones (over 40’s) leave churches like this for something more real.

  18. @ Glittergirl – I knew the “party” was over when I couldn’t, in all good conscious, invite anyone to church (C3) anymore. Very sad, especially with a passion for evangelism deeply ingrained in my heart.

    It’s a new day now, and have no problem inviting people along to our new church. They won’t be “entertained” but they will hear God’s Word handled respectfully, and just might feel the conviction of the Holy Spirit as He moves the minister to preach His Word and bring us to repentance and the forgiveness of sins.

    @ Teflon aka FL – http://cicministry.org/commentary/issue92.htm

  19. I find it very troubling that a C3 pastor (FL/Teflon) continues to try to blog when he has been banned.

    Dishonestly representing himself under various names, so to speak. Not respecting the wishes of the moderator.

  20. Re Teflon – shouldn’t be surprised at his/her lack of respect for this blog. As I’ve mentioned previously, the career pastor is so tied up in their own sub-cultural “world” they simply become (over time) inept at following simple and basic instructions from people in the “real world”

    Case in point – I had a C3 pastor come into my business recently. He asked me 3 times – “are you having a good day?”
    On the 3rd time, I asked him quite directly “are you just dumb or do you not listen? I’ve already answered that twice before”
    These guys are living life vicariously through their congregations.

    I see TVdude is not here today? No comments anyways. Playing church leader / quasi minister is obviously taking up his time???

  21. Specks, one question… IF and WHEN you get all of your family and friends out of C3 as you put it, will you then be leaving church for good? Just a question 🙂

  22. Specks, can you start a thread on the sham place where all these people get their phd’s from, I forget the name of it, but it is in florida and I read PP, Joyce Meyer, B. Hinn all got their phd from there.

    I am sorry if this has been answered, but I do not have time to read the whole thread, is it Biblical shelling out millions of dollars like Kong Hee has done with his church to buy this building? I honestly do not know anymore and love to hear anyone’s thoughts??

    Specks, one huge favour please, someone asked before, can you do a summary paragraph at the start of the post, most people do not read the whole transcript, even though you do a great job doing it. Then if people want to, they can read the whole thing. I think someone else asked for something similar before.

    Teddy, just wondering what style of church do you currently attend? I am looking for a change. Thanks

  23. Ronfire, interesting observations. Interesting in so far as you have managed to prove my point that this blog is a place of massive over-generalisation and self-important chest-beating. Those attributes that you so readily apply to me (without ever having met me or spoken to me in person by the way – interesting then that you feel you can speak for me) would actually describe less than 5% of christian leaders world-wide. Are there leaders like this in the church? Yes, especially if you try really, really, really hard to find them. Is every minister like this? No. Let me ask you a hypothetical. Recently a medical doctor was jailed for malpractice. Does that stop you from going to any doctor anywhere? Of course not. That would be nuts. So why do you lot blame every pastor on the planet for the bad works of a few? It’s down-right ignorance in my opinion. I suggest all of you take a deep breath and perhaps think before you form your opinions. And for the record, everything that you salaciously ascribe to me are the opposite of what I believe and teach. Not that that fact will make a difference to anything you guys choose to believe about me.

    Glittergirl – “I do agree TVdude that the blog can be seen to be tearing down the church, but I would think that most people who stumble across this site do so because they are looking for answers. I know that is why I’m here.”

    That’s true, but unfortunately the longer they stay here the more bitter and twisted they become. I agree that it is important for anyone coming out of an abusive church to have somewhere where they can talk to others who have similar stories. But it is most important that they then move on from that place and into a place of healing. This blog will not help you do that. It will cause you to stay in that place of hurt and anger. It’s sole purpose is to seek out and highlight what is wrong in the church rather than attempt to help others overcome. Look at the comments from Blah-blah for example. Words that destroy, not words that build up and edify.

    “I had a C3 pastor come into my business recently. He asked me 3 times – “are you having a good day?”
    On the 3rd time, I asked him quite directly “are you just dumb or do you not listen? I’ve already answered that twice before”

    Blah-blah, you are rude. What kind of a person feels they have the right to treat someone that way, regardless if they are a pastor or not? You need some lessons in how to treat your fellow human beings. An attitude like yours is not one to be congratulated but pitied.

    “I see TVdude is not here today? No comments anyways. Playing church leader / quasi minister is obviously taking up his time???”

    Yes blah-blah, while you’re here whinging and congratulating yourself for being oh-so-smart I am out doing the work of the gospel. How many people’s lives have you enriched today, or this week, or ever? I thought not.

  24. @ John Smith – we attend an Anglican church on the northern beaches. Small congregation, church growth seems to be coming through families attending playgroups/bible study etc. Minister very much a family man. Love the teaching, love the people.

    Definately no “cult of personality” driving this church. 🙂

  25. John Smith: “IF and WHEN you get all of your family and friends out of C3 as you put it, will you then be leaving church for good? Just a question”

    I can’t wait to have nothing to do with it anymore. 😀

  26. JSmith: “Specks, can you start a thread on the sham place where all these people get their phd’s from, I forget the name of it, but it is in florida and I read PP, Joyce Meyer, B. Hinn all got their phd from there.”

    Looking into it now. It may take longer if I did it.

    In the mean time, Lance did a great job on Groupsects uncovering information on the ‘St. Thomas Christian College’ here:

    http://groupsects.wordpress.com/2010/07/27/danny-nalliahs-fake-doctorate/

    Read that while I delve into articles on this.

    “Specks, one huge favour please, someone asked before, can you do a summary paragraph at the start of the post, most people do not read the whole transcript, even though you do a great job doing it. Then if people want to, they can read the whole thing. I think someone else asked for something similar before.”

    OK. Sometimes they are hard to do because a lot of the talks bumble on about nothing in particular. The above quotes from the sermon was one of those talks.

    I could guess Kong Hee was talking about becoming a good leader, but it seemed to be more about himself or about being someone of ‘value’. If not that, it was about the importance of education and learning. It could be more about that because he was talking to students.

  27. @TVDude. You are right. I should not have unloaded on you like that and I apologise. You are not responsible for what so many of your peers do.

  28. @ TVDude – I wonder if your venerated ministers who have been so unfairly derided on this blog would get out of their BMW’s and ivory towers for five minutes and would be prepared to give an account of themselves by means of moderated public debate?

    A great topic to start with would be “what is the Gospel”

    I am serious – I would be impressed if you could get one these charlatans to have sit in front of an audience under cross examination…

  29. “I wonder if your venerated ministers who have been so unfairly derided on this blog would get out of their BMW’s and ivory towers for five minutes and would be prepared to give an account of themselves by means of moderated public debate?”

    Mosco, more tarring everyone with the same brush? Haven’t you read anything I have written?! For every one “venerated minister” driving a “BMW” you demand to cross examine, I can show you one hundred humble servants doing the work that God has called them to do.

  30. Notwithstanding the “hundred humble servants doing the work that God has called them to do” (who have not been the subject of discussion of this blog in any event), Perhaps you might provide evidence of anyone being tarred who hasnt already tarred themselves by preaching a gospel (or no gospel at all) that falls under the approbation and indeed the anathema of the Apostle Paul in Galatians 1:8?

    I detect from your comments that you are perplexed about what has been the subject of discussion on this blog i.e.
    1. “I mean, seriously, you guys sit here complaining about every jot and tittle, every word and sentence, while real Christians are out there doing the actual work of the gospel”
    2. “You all self-righteously talk about the sin of Pride and salaciously give examples of other’s supposed sin, yet you ignore the massive pride you yourselves indulge in in every word and criticism you write.”

    Those comments in and of themselves ARE criticisims and generalisiations of persons commenting of the articles posted on this blog and therefore show that you are unable to attain the standards you set yourself for other Chrisitians (I guess that also includes the ones you have in your own devine omniscience, summarily decided are not “real Christians” (gee? is that yet another example of pride with a side order of hypocrisy!!))

    Back at you – while you are protesting about the unfair and unbalanced generalisations being made by “ALL” contributors to this blog and waxing eloquent on the subject of “self-righteous talk [on this blog] about the sin of Pride” perhaps you might examine my comments on that blog article you are referring to and advise how my comments, specifically within the context of that blog article, were a wholesale self-righteous examination of the sin of pride?

  31. More disgusting leadership worship:

    Burn Your Boats – When Leaders Go “All In”
    When Alexander the Great arrived on the shores of Persia, his army was overwhelmingly outnumbered.

    The odds against them were terrible. Turning away and getting back in the boats seemed like an option to let them regroup and come back another time. But rather than having an emergency escape plan available, Alexander gave the orders to his men to “burn the boats.”

    As their only means of retreat went up in flames, legend has it that Alexander turned to his men and said, “We go home in Persian ships, or we die.”

    Not quite the stirring Braveheart speech, but certainly motivational in it’s own way! What followed was an astounding victory over an army that was in many ways superior. Win or die. Simple.

    I’m more comfortable being the “options guy.” I like knowing Plan B (and maybe C too). I want to have contingencies for the worst case scenario. I get some security from having an exit plan. And history is littered with examples of times when just such a retreat plan would have been wise.
    But…

    There’s nothing like burning your boats to focus your mind on one thing, and one thing only- success. It’s extraordinary what we as leaders are capable of when we are in a corner, with no other option but to give our absolute best (and even beyond that).

    Coming to Shore in America
    I write this article from New York City. We moved to America recently from Sydney Australia with our three kids under the age of 5. We’ve taken my business global. Plus we’re launching our own not-for-profit, in the most expensive city in America during the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

    In other words we burned out boats. In poker terms we “went all in on the short stack.”

    • How about you?
    • What risks are you taking in your leadership that have put you and your team “all in?”
    • Are your troops fighting with one eye on the battle, but the other on retreat?
    • Is your desire for exit plans resulting in mediocre commitment?

    Perhaps burning your boats is most important when the odds are already stacked against you. There’s no “test and see” when you are outnumbered 5-to-1. When the numbers are stacked so high against you, quick decisions like burning your boats is a must. Time is of the essence in this type of situation and you’ll waste what precious little resource you have if you stall.

    The only legitimate plan is to garner everything you have, and pit it against your competition in a way that circumvents their strength and leverages yours.

    That requires 100% commitment. Really trying won’t do it. Giving it a shot won’t either. 100%.

    “There is nothing impossible to him who will try” ~ Alexander the Great (circa 348 BC)

    So how are you doing at burning your boats? Are you playing it safe and keeping your emergency hatch in your side-view mirror? Or are you taking the right risks when it is time to “go all in?” I’d love to hear your stories of courage when you were backed in a corner!” – NY Pastor Paul Andrew, Hillsong, 15/9/10

    From: http://ht.ly/2EHh5

    Phil Pringle would agree:

    “Across the span of human history lie a host of outstanding individuals who have led the world through difficult times, changed the way we live, and brought about entirely new living conditions for people everywhere. Consider these individuals:
    * Alexander the Great, king of Macedonia (356-323 BC), changed the political and social climate of much of the civilized world after conquering it by age 33. Having never lost a battle, he introduced new ideas for governing and spread Grecian culture throughout the world.
    * Renaissance painter, architect, inventor, and engineer Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) changed the world by designing innovative bridges, highways, weapons, costumes, and scientific instruments. He invented prototypes of flying machines, the helicopter, and the parachute, and made hundreds of other discoveries during his lifetime.

    * German reformer Martin Luther changed the world on a spiritual level by nailing 95 theses against the practices of the Catholic Church onto the door of the Wittenberg castle church, thus sparking the Reformation.”
    – Phil Pringle, You The Leader, pg 14-15

    Yes. Please consider these ‘leaders’ for a second. Because I don’t think Hillsong and C3 church leaders have. Do you want pastors to burn your houses so you give all your money to build a big house to ‘support you’?

    Talk about worldly leadership!

  32. what Kong Hee says is now the architypal justification for the excesses of the modern Laodicean church:

    “So God is saying this [On Deut 4:4]: ‘The Laws of God are so incredible, so complete, so well thought out, if you as a people will follow them, then the world is gonna get envious of you. You will be a lender and not a borrower. In other words, you are going to be successful, you are going to be the head and not the tail, you are going to be wealthy and prosperous. And the truth is, the world will only get impressed by God when they see our wisdom in handling our finances.”

    that kind of misapprehension of the stages of redemptive history is why that hour on sunday mornings in Australia & America is the most shameful and idolatorous hour of the week….

    How about we compare what the Apostle John said with Kong Hee’s gospel- John says that the world will NOT LISTEN to the true unadulterated Christian Gospel

    Kong Hee says “You know, what God uses to impress a pagan world is really the quality of life, the standard of living that we have.” REALLY!!!The Biblical mandate for Christian Evangelism is that we MUST speak God’s unchanging message of the gospel whether the world HATES US OR NOT: “If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you” (John 15:19).

    This from John Macarthur says it nicely
    “All those who truly love Christ and care about the truth have a solemn duty to defend the truth by exposing and opposing these lies that masquerade as truth. If we fail in that duty because of indifference, apathy, or a craving for the approval of men, we are no less guilty than those who actively spread the lies.”

  33. I’m glad someone is finally looking at Kong Hee’s quotes. That man should be publically shamed again and again until he turns from his blindness!

    Those videos disgusted me TVDude because you the widow, the old lady, the person in a wheel-chair device and little kids all go up to the id-alter-ous stage and place money for the ‘Rise & Build’ when that money should have stayed in their pockets. Talk about a mega-fleecing scam!

  34. “Perhaps you might provide evidence of anyone being tarred who hasnt already tarred themselves by preaching a gospel (or no gospel at all) that falls under the approbation and indeed the anathema of the Apostle Paul in Galatians 1:8?”

    Mosco, in Galations 1:8 Paul is talking specifically about false teachers who had come into the Galatian church to turn them away from the gospel of Jesus crucified. Check out the previous verse. If a pastor denies the deity and Sonship of Jesus then he is teaching a false gospel. To say that anyone who teaches something that you simply don’t agree with (i.e. tithing, prosperity doctrine etc) falls under this warning from Paul is incorrect. What gives you the right to say that someone who teaches these kinds of things should be eternally condemned? By who’s reckoning are they wrong and you right? Yours?

  35. “Those videos disgusted me TVDude because you the widow, the old lady, the person in a wheel-chair device and little kids all go up to the id-alter-ous stage and place money for the ‘Rise & Build’ when that money should have stayed in their pockets. Talk about a mega-fleecing scam!”

    That’s a bold statement specks. How is it that you can confidently say that ” that money should have stayed in their pockets” without you knowing them, their circumstances, their relationship with God, their willingness to obey the Holy Spirit, or their desire to see their church grow? How do you know whether any of those women are widows? Are you God? How do you know that those kids weren’t giving some of their pocket money and not making themselves bankrupt? How do you know whether the money the people are giving is out of their abundance and not their lack? You pass judgement on an entire church assembly based solely upon your own prejudices and a quick shot on a video. It’s about time you began to look at things a little more objectively specks.

  36. Wow! TVDude! It’s called prosperity gospel because it glorifies prosperity more then Jesus!

    I have heard more prosperity preachers preach on the importance of giving to God and being blessed in return many more times then the importance of keeping people’s eyes on Christ

    They worship influence, vision and leadership all for the cause of prosperity! Just listen to teachers like Hinn, Creflo, Kong Hee, Phil Pringle and Brian Houston and you will see and hear them replace the role of Christ in a believers life in the name of the Vision, the Leader and Tithing Spirit.

    What these teachers are operating under is the spirit of Anti-Christ! Not Christ. Look up the definition of anti-Christ yourself and you will see that these masquerading and boastful men do replace Jesus and His Spirit with the doctrines of demons.

    Did you not read the above quotes from Kong Hee?

  37. “That’s a bold statement specks. How is it that you can confidently say that ” that money should have stayed in their pockets” without you knowing them, their circumstances, their relationship with God, their willingness to obey the Holy Spirit, or their desire to see their church grow?”

    God is not a god of stupidity as you seem to think He is. He is a God of Wisdom and teaches us practical healthy living. I am not even going to answer your questions. Go read up on the widows mite and see what Jesus said just before the widow gave her mite.

    It was the pharisees who tricked her into giving her money to them when it should have been them looking after her needs. Kong Hee is that same type of pahrisee that is leeching off the unfortunate.

    “You pass judgement on an entire church assembly based solely upon your own prejudices and a quick shot on a video. It’s about time you began to look at things a little more objectively specks.”

    It’s called delusion and deception TVDude. Creflo does it. Pringle does it. Wagner does it. Houston does it. Osteen does it. Bentley does it. Joyner does it. Cho does it. Kong Hee does it. Kong Hee promotes greed and deceives his followers. This is not leadership – it’s money-grubby greedership. Why can you not see this? How much more black and white do you want it to be before it’s too late?

    But of course! You want me to look at things a bit more objectively! Then I will NOT an assumption on this video below.

  38. People giving at Kong Hee’s church for lots of grubby money from heaven:

    You can’t get more deluded then that!

  39. Hah…

    Look @ TVdude cracking boners all over the show here?!

    He’s got his panties in a twist because someone is calling out shabby doctrines that send people broke.

    SEND PEOPLE F*UCKING BROKE – did you read that?

    That’s about all these doctrines do – they enrich the receiver and rob those that give. It’s the poor desperate people who give because they are fed a little dream or a little hope.
    Proverbs tells us that a fool and his money are EASILY parted. Well, I’ve been a fool in the past and it gut me to see others have to experience it.

    Seriously TVdude, what kind of pastor are you? Your tolerant easy come attitude might work in your neck of the woods but do you seriously entertain the notion that Christ is so nonchalant about all of this?

    Do you really think when he returns he’ll be as blase about all this as you are?

  40. I don’t think Christ is blase about this issue at all. Not now and not ever.

    Don’t know if it was in the John MacArthur video, but it’s worth pointing out that after the widow gave her mite, Jesus pointedly referred to the Pharisees as ‘devouring widow’s houses’.

    This is the problem with much prosperity preaching today. It is those in the most difficult circumstances who are under the most pressure to give in order to receive God’s solution to their financial woes. Someone who is more comfortably off won’t feel the same pressure. But they are told they have to do this, in order to receive from their Father in Heaven. When He in fact gives freely, to all who ask. When we give, it is our response to Him, rather than our attempt to earn what is already ours. Look at the older brother of the prodigal son.

    Anyway – that’s enough from me today. Have a nice night, everyone.

  41. I listened to all 5 clips on that John Macarthur sermon – he talked about the selling of indulgences etc in the early Catholic church, how they would tax the people to build their edifices that could take 100’s of years to complete.

    It made me laugh to think how similar that sounded to Rise&Build – the constant need for more money to build even more edifices.

  42. @TV Dude – Im glad you are actually willing to engage in dialouge.

    “in Galations 1:8 Paul is talking specifically about false teachers who had come into the Galatian church to turn them away from the gospel of Jesus crucified.”

    1. who were the “false teachers”?

    2. what was the means the “false teachers” were using to turn them away the Gospel?

  43. “Look @ TVdude cracking boners all over the show here?!

    He’s got his panties in a twist because someone is calling out shabby doctrines that send people broke.

    SEND PEOPLE F*UCKING BROKE – did you read that?”

    “TVdude: if you wish to honestly debate, then let’s do that. I have no further time for slanderous mockery and libelous accusations though.”

    Blah-blah, practice what you preach. Maybe that way I will begin to view your opinions as valid rather than as the angry rants of an ill-informed and immature child.

  44. Sorry TVdude; You were “cracking” a serious boner though, I was simply stating the obvious.

    I am sorry but I do get riled up over these issues.

    For the record, I’ve lost any hope in holding a sane debate with you TVdude, I just think you are too indoctrinated to see reason at this point.

    I’ll see how Mosco goes with you from the sidelines and I’ll not engage you further if that’s what you’d prefer.

    Apologies for any offense all.

  45. @Specks “I have heard more prosperity preachers preach on the importance of giving to God and being blessed in return many more times then the importance of keeping people’s eyes on Christ”

    Really? Or could it be that you ignore every other teaching that they do because you are looking for offence?

    “It’s called delusion and deception TVDude. Creflo does it. Pringle does it. Wagner does it. Houston does it. Osteen does it. Bentley does it. Joyner does it. Cho does it. Kong Hee does it. Kong Hee promotes greed and deceives his followers. This is not leadership – it’s money-grubby greedership.”

    Look, I am not here to blindly support every bad piece of doctrine preached in the church. I have heard some bad preaching by many of these guys on this subject, sure, but I have also heard those same preachers preach some incredible stuff too. I agree that a lot of what is being taught about finances is not a correct interpretation of scripture ( the 30, 60 100 fold teaching a case in point). But do I believe that what they teach is a false gospel, or that those preaching that stuff should be condemned to hell? NO! The only way anyone is condemned to hell is by rejecting Christ, and every one of these preachers teaches Christ and Him crucified. Some of them have placed too much emphasis on the prosperity message, but this is not a false gospel. Try looking up what the bible says about false gospels and you will see that it is in fact teaching that rejects Jesus and attempts to turn a believer from following Christ. The prosperity message is not being used to deliberately turn people away from Jesus.Misguided? Perhaps. Deliberate? No.

    “Go read up on the widows mite and see what Jesus said just before the widow gave her mite. It was the pharisees who tricked her into giving her money to them when it should have been them looking after her needs. ”

    Specks, you need to read your bible properly. It does not say anywhere in scripture that she was forced by the pharisees to give her money. It was a requirement for every Jew under the Law to give to the temple. The pharisees had nothing to do with it. See, this is my point. You are so desperate to paint these pastors in such a bad light that you will grasp at any straw you can find to prove that you are right and they are wrong, regardless of whether it is right or not.

    “God is not a god of stupidity as you seem to think He is.”

    Specks, please point out where I said this.

  46. @ TV Dude –
    “But do [not] I believe that what they teach is a false gospel, or that those preaching that stuff should be condemned to hell?”

    TVDude I dont know if that was an answer to my question as well and you were just trying to kill two “pharisees” with one stone, but I believe that your premise has more holes in it than swiss cheese so pretty please, with glowwwry angel dust on top, answer the friggin question….

  47. Mosco – TVdude is like many in the secret society of “paid ministry” – skilfully adept at speaking a lot and answering very little.

    It is highly unlikely you’ll get an appropriate response from this wayward brother and it’s somewhat akin to catching a fish with your bare hands after you have rubbed sunscreen lotion into yourself.

    It really is called “strong delusion” for a reason.

  48. What is disconcerting is TVdude’s synopsis that so long as you’re preaching a crucified Christ and a bona-fide resurrection, anything else that you may choose to add to that equation really just amounts to “water under the bridge”

    If I decided to doctor in a few doctrines, apparently it’s “all good” so long as my intentions are noble.

    This seems to be a gospel of luxury, a “take it as it comes” mindset; a casual Christianity that as far as I can see, has no place in the scriptures.

  49. While TVdude is pounding away on Google trying to find a liberal theologian to support his propositions does anyone want to hear a joke?

  50. “@TV Dude – Im glad you are actually willing to engage in dialouge.”

    Mosco, I love it! Without debate opinions become entrenched and ineradicable, so it is important for us to look at things from as many sides as possible so that we don’t become stubborn and ignorant. I was a long time lurker on this blog before I ever piped up. I held my tongue for a very long time, but I was continually frustrated with what I read because there was never any attempt by people on this blog to look at the argument from both sides. With the banning of he who cannot be mentioned, any voice of “reason” (and I use that term loosely regarding FL) was taken away, and the blog became just another excuse for the angry and disenfranchised to tear apart any teacher or doctrine that offended their sensibilities.

    So why do I appear to support everything you guys despise? Well, firstly, I don’t. I have said many times I am not here to support any doctrine. All I am attempting to do is make you guys aware that there is another side to the argument. I am attempting to make you realise that not every pastor is the devil incarnate. I am trying to make you realise that a charge of false gospel against a minister is a very serious accusation. I am here to make you think about the fact that your interpretation of the bible may not necessarily be the correct interpretation. And I am here because this blog needs a voice for the accused.

    Mosco, I’ll let you in on a little secret. It may shock you to know but I have been in exactly the same position as many people here at signposts. I was in a church years and years ago that left me feeling hurt, abused and broken. I felt I was alone in my hurt so I was desperate for validation from anyone who knew what I had been through. I got that validation from a friend who had been through the same things as I had. But instead of healing I got more and more angry and bitter. I told anyone who would listen (and many who wouldn’t) how bad that church was, and how binding and law-filled the teaching was. Word got back to the church, and many friendship was severely damaged. The more time my friend and I spent together, the worse my church experience seemed. I vowed never to set foot in a church again, and I spat poison every time I spoke of the pastor. Then one day God showed me how far I had plunged. I was once the kind of guy who could never say anything negative about anyone. Now I walked around with a permanent scowl on my face and hated anyone who was in leadership in any church anywhere. God told me I had a choice. I could continue in this downward spiral, or I could dust myself off and make the decision to rise above my circumstances and choose to forgive and move on. I made the decision to do just that, and, like massive lead weights, my burden was lifted and I began to see things for what they really were. I initiated dialogue with the leadership from my old church, and I realised that many of the hurts that I felt were entirely imagined. I still didn’t agree with some of the teaching, so I didn’t think I could continue to attend that church, but my zealousness in proving their doctrine wrong disappeared.

    Even though this was a horrible period in my life, I am also thankful that it occurred, because it has given me the ability to be able to minister to others in the same position as I had been. It also makes me qualified to comment on many of the things you guys criticise, because I have been there. I am not some blindly loyal acolyte ready to defend any pastor regardless of their guilt or innocence. As I said, there are always two sides, and it is important that we are aware of both. Hopefully some of what I add to these debate will stick with some of you. If it does then all of the abuse that I cop here is more than worth it.

    Just so you know also, I have made the personal decision to never publicly criticise any minister, pastor or ministry. I truly believe that doing so is futile and causes more harm to yourself than to any of those you criticise. And, let’s face it, what changes will an angry spiteful comment on a blog like this make to the lives of the mega-pastors around the world? One of my favourite sayings is “you can’t change the world until you change your own.” It starts with us, amongst our own circle of influence, to replace the negative with the positive. As your circle of influence widens, you have much more of an ability to speak into people’s lives. And who knows, the larger your circle of influence gets, you may then have the ability to speak into the lives of those you criticise.

  51. A touching story there from TVdude; behold, there is something akin to “flesh” underneath the mans stony pastoral exterior. At least it seems so anyways

    “Just so you know also, I have made the personal decision to never publicly criticize any minister, pastor or ministry”

    Well that’s all very well for our boner cracking, dodgy-doctrine loving pastor Mr “TVdude” but unfortunately, neither his claimed Savior nor any of the founding church fathers had that same attitude. No, they all “went there” and did so with gusto and a serious amount of “balls”

    I would imagine that flapping at the gums re doctrinal issues as a career minister (especially calling others out) would invite serious repercussions down the track? Is this the motivation perhaps? I can imagine it would be.

  52. TVdude you crap on like none of us have ever darkened the door of an abusive apostate cult-like church – I have been there as much as you have (like many here).

    I put Kenneth Copeland’s kids through school (supporting his stinking tape ministry (may a thousand flies infest his arse))

    What you are selling is not news to me, I sympathise with your situation and I can identify totally – but honestly, from what I have read here, you have no earthly business behind a pulpit

  53. @TVdude – this guy is all good???

    He believes in a resurrected Christ etc.

    Interesting doctrines re the return of “Giants” and apparently we’ll be swimming in great gobs of sh*t but hey, this is just open to interpretation.
    Fast Forward to 2:22 for the clanger folks.

  54. Pulpit? I mean podium? no….I mean stool and high table thingy…..or just a bean bag on a stage …. whatever…

  55. @TVdude – you lost me when you said “I am here to make you think that your interpretation of the bible may not necessarily be the correct interpretation”.

    I don’t know what version you use, certainly hope it’s not the C3 favourite “The Message”.

    Who determines your interpretation? Do you allow scripture to interpret scripture? Or do you wait for the Holy Spirit to bring some “fresh” revelation – what it “means” to YOU, rather than what it actually says, historically and contextually.

  56. Sorry Mosco, I thought that you were interested in dialogue. Seems I had you wrong. I hope you and blah-blah have fun patting yourselves on the back

  57. With that Ladies and Gentlemen….TVdude has left the building – I guess we will have to write on his blogisphere epitaph “As a Pastor – he made a Pretty Good Layman”

    If you rise again from etherial grave Lazareth remember that I only asked 2 questions that can be answered by anyone armed with nothing more than a knowledge of the basic synopsis of the book of Galatians….

  58. I haven’t left the building Mosco. I would have been happy to explain to you the truth behind what Paul was saying in Galatians, and any other scripture that you and blah-blah mis-interpret if you were interested in proper dialogue. Instead you have taken a leaf out of the Blah-blah book of puerility and to be honest I am just not that interested in wasting my time engaging with you.

  59. @teddy “you lost me when you said “I am here to make you think that your interpretation of the bible may not necessarily be the correct interpretation”.

    What I said there doesn’t read well does it? My apologies. It was the kid’s bed-time when I was writing that post and even though I’d put them in bed they kept coming out to ask me questions. I was a little distracted. I also had a big day at work (5 hours on the road for a three hour job) so I am very tired. Anyway, what I intended to say was that I am trying to get you guys to re-examine and perhaps re-think your interpretations of scripture. Many of the scriptures I have seen quoted on this blog supporting many of your arguments have been so badly taken out of context so I am attempting to bring them back in line with scripture as a whole.

  60. Interesting…

    It’s all turned to you know what since I last had a decent read.

    The characteristics which have peed people off on this blog, and which you are desperately trying to emulate Dude….is to acknowledge what the contentions of many are here on this blog are…and the pain and suffering that has come with it on the one hand, but then white wash it with the next flourish…thereby totally cutting the ground underneath those same folk’s feet.

    It has been my observation that the one single thing that kills any meaningful debate, and results in total degeneration is rationalising away people’s hurts and experience and then telling them that their hard won wisdom is effectively all wrong.

    The only thing that does is erect more great walls. Ultimately it is why he-who-must-not-be-named got the bullet recently, and why I left SP02 for an extended period over a year ago….because I just couldn’t stand it anymore.

    Dude…as a point of interest you having a go at Mosco and BB for condemning….you were the only person to use that word in this thread.

    As for others quoting the story about the widow and the two mites…I don’t think it was quoted in context at all…it is possible there might be some connection between Jesus’ saying that the Pharisees (religious elites – read pastors if you like), but it is equally possible that they are not lineally connected as has tried to be put.

    Mosco though did ask a valid question earlier: what is the Gospel.

    Well here is my unschooled version.

    God created the world, then us. He created us specifically for fellowship with Him, and put us in charge of His creation. And it was good.

    Then we told God to get knotted because God held out on us. He hadn’t, but the consequence unforeseen by us was that the shame, guilt, and death that came on all human kind from that rebellion (we call it sin) resulted in the fellowship God designed and intended being impossible in our current state. And the creation that we live on has been in a downward spiral ever since with wholesale extinctions, and destruction of environments across the globe.

    God not to be thwarted (like that old fashioned word) put in place a rescue plan in which Jesus – God’s only begotten Son – became both man and God – at the same time. And He who was God and man died in our place, and was resurrected from the dead on the third day, thereby defeating the power of sin once and for all. Those who believe in what God – Jesus has done for them – forget the mystery of it for the moment – we’ve already had a go at resolving that and failed – refer atonement thread – are ‘saved’, and that both the possibility and actuality of the fellowship that God always intended for us has been restored – as an expression of and in His love for us.

    Now I’m sure there a number of very important things that people could quibble over with my rendition of the Gospel. And I could also simplify down to about three lines if I wanted to.

    But what I find interesting is that anytime I look beyond the quotes provided in this blog about these prosperity focussed pastors and churches, is how little reference I find to the ‘Gospel’.

    So the moral of the story is this: there is one simple solution to reduce if not stop the crap dished out by this blog and others to those referred to above: preach the Gospel.

    Then we’ll stop whinging and whining. If you can show they actually do preach the Gospel…same same.

    Full stop.

    The end.

    Period.

  61. Sorry Mosco, it would just be pearls before swine. You’ve made it clear that you’re here to simply heap scorn upon those who hold opposing views to yours. I’d be wasting my time.

  62. TVdude – I want to apologise for being ungratious – You have invested a fair bit of time and passion on your views here – fine – you have also held yourself out as a pastor, as far as I know no-one else here is (including myself).

    All the rhetoric aside now – I (and others) do really want to meaningfully interact with you as you have some stong views – so do I – fine

    You said

    “I am trying to get you guys to re-examine and perhaps re-think your interpretations of scripture. Many of the scriptures I have seen quoted on this blog supporting many of your arguments have been so badly taken out of context so I am attempting to bring them back in line with scripture as a whole.”

    Pick an argument (mine or anyone else’s arguments on this blog) that you feel stongly about where scripture has been abused to justify that argument or used out of context and lets talk about it

    Can you please also use proper exegesis to show us how that scripture has been incorrectly used?

    Can you also use scholarly secondary sources (commentaries etc) in support of your arguments?

  63. Ok TVdude your choice but let the record reflect it, I intend to be around commenting on this blog for a while so I expect no further comments from you about my comments either directly or indirectly

  64. mn, a lot to digest at this late hour (why am I still awake?).

    “The characteristics which have peed people off on this blog, and which you are desperately trying to emulate Dude….is to acknowledge what the contentions of many are here on this blog are…and the pain and suffering that has come with it on the one hand, but then white wash it with the next flourish”

    If you had read my reasons for being here you would have seen that I certainly acknowledge that people have been hurt. So have I. But I got over it. I have been lurking here for years mn, and the very same people who were posting here then are still posting now, with maybe one or two exceptions. No-one has moved on. The same arguments and accusations spouted years ago are still being spouted today. That’s not good.

    “It has been my observation that the one single thing that kills any meaningful debate, and results in total degeneration is rationalising away people’s hurts and experience and then telling them that their hard won wisdom is effectively all wrong.”

    I’ve got to be honest here mn, and I mean no disrespect, but I don’t see much wisdom here on signposts. You look at the recent thread on C3 Balmain. A wise person would have said, “hang on a minute, before I swallow this guy’s story, maybe I should check it’s validity.” But did that happen? No. Instead everyone pounced on it like vultures on a carcass. Sure there are some interesting articles and observations on signposts, but for the most part this blog is about seeking out new dirt on mega-churches and pastors and then gleefully tearing them apart piece by piece. That is not wisdom. It’s foolishness.

    “Dude…as a point of interest you having a go at Mosco and BB for condemning….you were the only person to use that word in this thread.”

    Mosco drew my attention to Galations 1:8 – But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned! So according to Mosco and blah-blah, anyone preaching the prosperity message, which they consider a false gospel is condemned to hell, hence my use of that word.

    “what is the Gospel.”

    The gospel is the good news of Jesus, His death and resurrection, His forgiveness of our sins through His death on the cross, it is our salvation through Him, it is His grace, His mercy, His peace, His love. What you said in a nutshell.

    “But what I find interesting is that anytime I look beyond the quotes provided in this blog about these prosperity focussed pastors and churches, is how little reference I find to the ‘Gospel’.”

    That may be true. But remember, as Paul wrote to the Hebrews, we need to move on from the “milk” (the gospel) and onto solid food. If all every preacher ever did was to preach Christ and Him crucified then we as a church would still be babes spiritually. It is imperative that we discover the depth of God’s Word and grow in spiritual maturity by teaching and learning about the fullness of Christ.

  65. “TVdude – I want to apologise for being ungratious – You have invested a fair bit of time and passion on your views here – fine – you have also held yourself out as a pastor, as far as I know no-one else here is (including myself). All the rhetoric aside now – I (and others) do really want to meaningfully interact with you as you have some stong views – so do I – fine”

    A do I Mosco. I appreciate your comment. If you are serious about wanting me to continue discussing stuff with you then I am happy to, but please lay off the personal attacks. Surely you can appreciate the fact that if I am being denigrated and criticised from all sides I am entitled to want to pick my battles.

    “Pick an argument (mine or anyone else’s arguments on this blog) that you feel stongly about where scripture has been abused to justify that argument or used out of context and lets talk about it
    Can you please also use proper exegesis to show us how that scripture has been incorrectly used?
    Can you also use scholarly secondary sources (commentaries etc) in support of your arguments?”

    I would relish the opportunity to do this, but I make the same challenge to you guys – no scriptures taken out of context, no doctrines based upon one isolated verse and using proper exegesis and scholarly sources.

    Not now though. It’s way too late to get started.

  66. “But remember, as Paul wrote to the Hebrews, we need to move on from the “milk” (the gospel) and onto solid food. If all every preacher ever did was to preach Christ and Him crucified then we as a church would still be babes spiritually. It is imperative that we discover the depth of God’s Word and grow in spiritual maturity by teaching and learning about the fullness of Christ.”

    Amazing – simply amazing – and tragic…..

    B. B. Warfield describes the preaching Christ and Him Crucified as ‘that sight of the majesty of God that pervades all of life and all of experience’.

    this from Martin Lloyd Jones is almost prophetic in that it was written in the 1960’s

    ‘For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified’
    (1 Corinthians 2:2).

    “You notice that he says that he determined not to know anything among them save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified. In other words, it was a decision. It was something he had determined. It was something quite deliberate; it was not haphazard. His statement is that, having looked at the whole situation, he came to this conclusion, this decision, that he was not going to know anything among them, save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified.”

    Today, of course, the view is almost the exact opposite of this. The argument is that if the Church, the Christian Church, is to have any impact upon people and is to win the people to the Church and to Christ, well then, we must of necessity talk about things in which people are interested. That is the argument. It has been said throughout the centuries that it is no use going to men and women in the midst of life with all sorts and kinds of problems and difficulties and just telling them about Jesus Christ and Him crucified. They simply will not listen. You will have no impact at all. You will have a little coterie of people perhaps, but it will have no impact upon people. If you want to influence people, we are told, and want to affect them and to win them, you must talk about the things in which they are interested. Well now, there is nothing new about that. You see that is exactly what they were saying nearly 2,000 years ago when the great Apostle visited Athens and visited Corinth. They always wanted any man who came to speak, to talk about the things in which they were interested. You remember we are told about the people in Athens that they spent their time in doing ‘nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing’ (Acts 17:21). They were very fond of listening to people, and when Paul came along they said, ‘What will this babbler say?’ They were ready to listen. But they always wanted a man to speak about the things in which they were interested. What were they?”

    I will let you all be the judge……..

  67. No offence TVdude with the above – you are so far off in that comment.

    I dont believe you are serious about that mate….

  68. “@Specks “I have heard more prosperity preachers preach on the importance of giving to God and being blessed in return many more times then the importance of keeping people’s eyes on Christ”

    Really? Or could it be that you ignore every other teaching that they do because you are looking for offence?”

    No really! Especially even more now the GFC went through the churches. That crisis opened many eyes of C3 fatcats. When they left, the giving talks increased.

    “Look, I am not here to blindly support every bad piece of doctrine preached in the church.”

    Well you’re doing a good job at defending those who behave the worst.

    “I agree that a lot of what is being taught about finances is not a correct interpretation of scripture ( the 30, 60 100 fold teaching a case in point). But do I believe that what they teach is a false gospel, or that those preaching that stuff should be condemned to hell? NO! The only way anyone is condemned to hell is by rejecting Christ, and every one of these preachers teaches Christ and Him crucified.”

    Do you not heed our Lord’s warning?
    Matt 24:4 Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For MANY WILL COME IN MY NAME, claiming, ‘Jesus is the Christ,’ and WILL DECEIVE MANY.

    1John 3:7-8 Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. He who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.

    Eph 5:6-7 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them.

    I used to believe that ministers like Munsey, Creflo, Pringle and Kong Hee were saved, but now I’m really not sure. I’d like to believe they are, but their teachings are badly damning many believers, sending many of them waywards or searing consciences. They fall extremely into line as the deceivers the bible warns us against. Why aren’t they listening to the Spirit anymore? I know these men know the gospel. And it breaks my heart TVD to see them sin by encouraging people to worship vision, leadership, money, revival, experiences… The show must go on!

    I encourage you to browse the archives of Signposts to see what conversations we’ve grabbed from these kinds of people. (Type in Steve Warren or Dave Sumrall in the search bar!)

    “Some of them have placed too much emphasis on the prosperity message, but this is not a false gospel.”

    It’s a distorted gospel. I believe in prosperity, but not in the way it is glorified as ‘good news’ to the gullible and greedy. If it is a distorted gospel, it is another false gospel. You have to be black and white on this otherwise, we are building our foundations on other things but Christ. We know it’s a false gospel because it has done exactly that- turn people away from Christ.

  69. teddy
    ‘I find it very troubling that a C3 pastor (FL/Teflon) continues to try to blog when he has been banned. Dishonestly representing himself under various names, so to speak. Not respecting the wishes of the moderator.”

    bb
    “Re Teflon – shouldn’t be surprised at his/her lack of respect for this blog. As I’ve mentioned previously, the career pastor is so tied up in their own sub-cultural “world” they simply become (over time) inept at following simple and basic instructions from people in the “real world””

    Gosh, blah-blah, you know so much about ‘career’ pastors. My goodness, God forbid that they might give up everything and make the ministry their vocation, and not some other career they could earn far more in. YOu have no idea what most give away to serve people like you, if you would let them. ‘Sub-culture’??? What you mean the higher culture of the Kingdom of heaven? That’s God’s culture isn’t it. Obeying instructions from the real world? What your world, you mean? Love to debate with you, son, but your ‘real world’ logic isn’t ready for it. I usually ignore you, but you make yourself a bit of a target. I apologise immediately for briefly presuming you’re anything but a nice guy!

    Of course, S&P dishonestly giving false reasons for banning people is acceptable. And placing oneself in a church to anonymously do all you can to destroy it isn’t being dishonest, and should be applauded, and left untouched. [Sorry, that was sarcasm].

    ‘Not respecting the wishes of the moderator’!!!

    Holding back from the general strength of my true convictions about what some of you are doing ad saying isn’t respecting the wishes of he moderator? Goodness, I couldn’t have been more polite to him, and for so long, too, and I subjected myself to the advise and counsel of Bull and RP on all issues via email, which I have since withdrawn, although I still communicate in a friendly way. But this was lavishly ignored by S&P.

    What a statement! “No respect!” I see no respect here. Zip! Zilch! Apart from RP, I would have to say. The disrespect for anyone with a contrary view to your own is astonishing. The disrespect for Pastors is close to anathema, in my opinion. They way you have treated V-Dude is a disgrace. Ever heard of social disobedience, anyone? Protesting injustice? I don’t believe in blog banishment, only moderation.

    If you actually had the courage of your conviction in regard to what you write and say you would welcome Pastors who were willing to discuss issues and debate with you, but, just seeing how you treat TV-Dude says it all.

    You may use another term, ‘he who shall not be mentioned’, or ‘FLy-in-sheep’s-clothing’, but everyone knows who is meant, and what is being said, and you find it impossible to desist from comment without right to response. Why is it OK for you to use another ID for FL, but FL is slapped down for the same?

    Is there a rule about using more than one pseudonym? A law? Is there a rule about blog-activism where there are clearly false accusations about various ministries being made, or misrepresentations are evident?

    I guess the increase in influence of Reformed Theology on the site is to be fiercely guarded, especially in view of the fact that it is the main reason most people here have an issue with Pentecost. It is basically a Calvinist stronghold these days.

    I don’t agree with most of you that SP02 is a haven for the hurting. That I would support. It is clearly a home for a handful of people who have an axe to grind, with a couple of notable exceptions. There is no real attempt at recovery, or some of you would have gotten over it by now. TV-Dude has been trying to tell you this, as did FL for years. Is S&P actually hurt? No, he is actively working to hurt others in his own church.

    ‘FL’ is no longer a clue!

  70. “I guess the increase in influence of Reformed Theology on the site is to be fiercely guarded, especially in view of the fact that it is the main reason most people here have an issue with Pentecost. It is basically a Calvinist stronghold these days.”

    There are a few here who are not “calvinist”. However this comment reminds me of a few scenes from “The Tudors” series I’ve been watching,when Luther’s reforms had an impact on the church in England.

    I guess I would have to declare the above commentator a “catholic” who simply wants to burn all of us sovereign grace christians at the stake.

  71. I believe it’s Pentecost which is being burned at the stake here, starting with the Pastors. I don’t see any banished calvinists. Reformist theology is legalistic and demands absolute obedience to its aims. That’s fine, but its flaws are glaring, yet it esteems itself highly, hence the ridicule of Pentecostalism as shallow, which it isn’t, in fact.

    Soon this commentary will be whisked away into a safe exclusion zone, and the stake will have claimed the day.

  72. “If all every preacher ever did was to preach Christ and Him crucified then we as a church would still be babes spiritually.”

    Still trying to get over the shock of that outrageous statement! I’m sure (at least I hope) you were very tired when you wrote that, TVD?

  73. BB in particular is way over the top in his criticicms of pastors as a monolithic homogeneous whole. By responding like that you are just setting a like response from the other end of the spectrum.

    FL are as always full of it.

    If you can show that these prosperity focussed pastors and churches do actually preach the gospel of Jesus Christ – the biblical Gospel that actually makes more than a passing reference Scripture – as opposed to the Gospel of self enlightenment and empowerment through tithing then may be you have an audience that at least is prepared to listen to you.

    At this stage I’m not.

    The guts of the issue is this: too many pentecostal pastors have an unholy focus on money, and not the Gospel. May be you point to errors of similar magnitude from other wings of Christianity…but that is not the focus here. And if you think this is becoming a Calvinist blog, then you simply don’t know what it is…which you don’t.

    Same old boring conversation.

  74. And to repeat…BB labeling all pastors in that way is dumb. If you are serious about the issues you have encountered in your travels, then its time to stop making excuses about it and grow up.

  75. HT Phoenix Preacher…

    “We read here and elsewhere every day about how discontent people are with the church.

    So, let’s build your own, just like you can build your own teddy bear at the mall.

    If you could build your own church, what would that look like?

    Just like the teddy bear, you get to decide how big it is and what it’s stuffed with.

    What are the most important elements of a church to you?

    Doctrine?

    Worship?

    Fellowship?

    Programs for the kids?

    History?

    Form of government?

    Political positions?

    In your perfect personal church what would take place on Sunday morning?

    Build your own and tell us what it looks like…especially those things you’d stuff in first…and what you would absolutely leave out.”

  76. @teddy, “Still trying to get over the shock of that outrageous statement! ”

    @ Mosco “Amazing – simply amazing – and tragic…..”

    You don’t know your bible very well do you?

    Hebrews 6:1-2 Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.

    Hebrews 5:11 “Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.”

  77. @Specks “Well you’re doing a good job at defending those who behave the worst.”

    I have said over and over again that I am not defending doctrine. I will say it again slowly so that you will understand

    I…..am….not….here…..to….defend….their….doctrine….

    I am trying to get you to look at the argument from both sides instead of from a completely closed off I-am-right-and they-are-wrong mindset. I have said this time and time and time again.

    “those who behave the worst.” In whose opinion do they behave the worst? Yours? This from a guy who swears that C3 is a gnostic cult?

  78. @mn

    “BB labeling all pastors in that way is dumb.”

    I am so encouraged to see you say this mn. The other day my wife asked me why I was wasting my time by engaging in debate on signposts with all of the abuse, name calling and accusations that are constantly flying my way. I told her that if just one person on signposts could see that not all pastors and church leaders are evil and out to feather their own nests and that there are in reality so many incredibly humble servant-leaders running churches around the world, then all of it would have been worth it. Thank you mn

  79. I’ve always held that opinion and have frequently expressed it as have others on this blog.

    But it doesn’t equate to in effect supporting what some pastors in the bigger pente churches are quite blatantly doing by refusing to call a spade a shovel.

    As I said the acid test I think has become to show that these guys actually present and teach stuff that is genuinely and clearly Christ centred, and not money or something else centred.

    Do that and you will have achieved something.

    Any fool can get abused on a blog.

    In that you are no orphan 🙂

  80. @mn

    “As I said the acid test I think has become to show that these guys actually present and teach stuff that is genuinely and clearly Christ centred, and not money or something else centred.

    Do that and you will have achieved something.”

    I can do that, but I am just heading out for lunch. Give me a day or so and I can source it.

  81. @ MN – well said again – good challenge

    @ TVdude – simply saying “You don’t know your bible very well do you?” is not meaningful interaction now is it?

    I see that no exegesis of those scriptures whatsoever (Hebrews 6:1-2 and Hebrews 5:11) – all you have done is quoted them….

    Again mate – your the pastor/teacher so:

    1. Can you please use proper exegesis to show us how those scriptures support your argument?

    2. Can you also please use scholarly secondary sources (commentaries etc) in support of your arguments?

  82. @ Mosco Hebrews 6:1 and 5:12-14 (I attributed the wrong verse number in my post) are self explanatory, how they read is what they mean, but for your benefit I have copied the notes from Matthew Henry’s Commentary of the New Testament for those passages :

    Hebrews 6: 1 – We have here the apostle’s advice to the Hebrews—that they would grow up from a state of childhood to the fullness of the stature of the new man in Christ. He declares his readiness to assist them all he could in their spiritual progress; and, for their greater encouragement, he puts himself with them: Let us go on. Here observe, In order to their growth, Christians must leave the principles of the doctrine of Christ. How must they leave them? They must not lose them, they must not despise them, they must not forget them. They must lay them up in their hearts, and lay them as the foundation of all their profession and expectation; but they must not rest and stay in them, they must not be always laying the foundation, they must go on, and build upon it. There must be a superstructure; for the foundation is laid on purpose to support the building.

    Hebrews 5:12-14 – In the oracles of God there are some first principles, plain to be understood and necessary to be learned. (2.) There are also deep and sublime mysteries, which those should search into who have learned the first principles, that so they may stand complete in the whole will of God. (3.) Some persons, instead of going forward in Christian knowledge, forget the very first principles that they had learned long ago; and indeed those that are not improving under the means of grace will be losing. (4.) It is a sin and shame for persons that are men for their age and standing in the church to be children and babes in understanding.
    IV. The apostle shows how the various doctrines of the gospel must be dispensed to different persons. There are in the church babes and persons of full age (v. 12-14), and there are in the gospel milk and strong meat. Observe, 1. Those that are babes, unskillful in the word of righteousness, must be fed with milk; they must be entertained with the plainest truths, and these delivered in the plainest manner; there must be line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little, and there a little, Isa. 28:10 . Christ despises not his babes; he has provided suitable food for them. It is good to be babes in Christ, but not always to continue in that childish state; we should endeavor to pass the infant state; we should always remain in malice children, but in understanding we should grow up to a manly maturity. 2. There is strong meat for those that are of full age, v. 14. The deeper mysteries of religion belong to those that are of a higher class in the school of Christ, who have learned the first principles and well improved them; so that by reason of use they have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil, duty and sin, truth and error. Observe, (1.) There have been always in the Christian state children, young men, and fathers. (2.) Every true Christian, having received a principle of spiritual life from God, stands in need of nourishment to preserve that life. (3.) The word of God is food and nourishment to the life of grace: As new-born babes desire the sincere milk of the word that you may grow thereby. (4.) It is the wisdom of ministers rightly to divide the word of truth, and to give to every one his portion—milk to babes, and strong meat to those of full age.

    Is that sufficient for you?

  83. @ TVdude

    Good stuff Tvdude – love the Matthew Henry Commentary

    Firstly, no big deal but – we don’t definitively know who authored Hebrews (although Paul is not out of the realms of possibility)

    Now – remember your thesis was:

    “But remember, as Paul (sic) wrote to the Hebrews, we need to move on from the “milk” (the gospel) and onto solid food. If all every preacher ever did was to preach Christ and Him crucified then we as a church would still be babes spiritually. It is imperative that we discover the depth of God’s Word and grow in spiritual maturity by teaching and learning about the fullness of Christ.”

    What is the “milk” referred to by the author of Hebrews – and is it something other than the Gospel?

    First three rules of a sound hermeneutic – “context, context and context” – the writer of Hebrews was writing to Jewish converts (though not exclusively) who were being put under pressure to go back to the old ways of Judaism (hence – letter to the “Hebrews”) . The alternating sections of exposition and application which characterizes Hebrews is interrupted for the sake of another strong exhortation in the passages 5:11-6:12. The nature of that exhortation is not one that is saying to his audience:

    “Ok you have already walked aisle, sung 35 choruses of “just as I am” and invited Jesus to come into your hearts (i.e. “milk”)– now who wants to see some really cool tricks”

    On the contrary, the purpose of the strong exhortation was that they “had NOT YET clearly grasped the fact that Judaism was but a temporary economy and its ordinances and ceremonies were foreshadowing Him who was to come here and make an atonement for the sins of His people. Now that He had come and finished His work the types and shadows had served their purpose, and the shadows were replaced by the Substance” (AW Pink Commentaries on Hebrews)

    Further in this regard DA Carson and Douglas J Moo in “Hebrews: Excerpt from An Introduction to the New Testament” say of these Christians:

    “They probably did not set out to abandon the Christian gospel and return to Judaism. In that sense the readers are turning to a form of “Jewish Christianity” more conservative than what the author himself approves. But the author’s point is that what the readers are in danger of adopting is in fact no Christianity at all. It is nothing less than apostasy: hence the strong paraenetic passages.”

    I don’t know about you, but that sounds a bit “Gospelly” to me – But what about Hebrews 5:11-6:12?? – Remember that Hebrews is “a sermon, composed like many good sermons, of alternating sections of exposition and application” (Dr Robert S Rayburn whose commentary on Hebrews was published in the Evangelical Commentary of the Bible) so having dealt exhaustively with the exposition of Christ’s high priesthood, which began in 4:14, Hebrews 5:11-6:12 climaxes in a powerful summing up and exhortation.

    Rayburn says of these passages “We have come again to such a section of summing up, of bringing the points so far made home to the consciences of his hearers or readers. It is a major section of application in the heart of the letter and reminds us, in no uncertain terms, what Hebrews is about, what concern prompted its being written and sent, and what the preacher is after in his sermon.”

    So can we get to the tricks now? NO!! more of that boring milky myopic gospelly stuff whether you like it or not!!! But just so you don’t think Im too much of a boring old reformed type of guy – I really like this from Dr David Guzik, a great Calvary Chapel guy

    “Milk corresponds to the first principles of Hebrews 6:12. Solid food is the “meatier” material such as understanding the connection between Jesus and Melchizedek.” Remember what those first principles are? “which be the first principles of the oracles of God”

    What Oracles? “Ye have again need of this — that some one should teach you the first principles of the oracles of God.” The word “oracles” (in the accusative case) is used by Peter in the same sense, as designating the doctrines of the GOSPELS

    This last bit from boring old Carson and Moo again “The epistle to the Hebrews greatly enriches New Testament Christology, especially with respect to Jesus’ priestly work, the finality of his sacrifice, the nature of his sonship, the importance of the incarnation (see esp. ch. 2), and his role as “pioneer.”

    Over to you TVdude….

  84. @TVdude – you seem like a ‘nice enough’ guy and I’ll be fair, it’s not many pastors who’d stick around at a site like this for any longer than 20 seconds so in that regard, I’ll give you the thumbs up.

    Still though, I am mightily troubled by a good many of your statements so I’ve not changed my mind on the career minister just yet. So… In that regard, all of your toil, your sweat, keyboard boners and the like have had little effect on me.

    Once again, I’d like to sincerely apologize if I’ve offended anyone here.

  85. Just for the sake of further conversation I just wanted to point out that I agree with TVdude

    “Hebrews 6:1 and 5:12-14 are self explanatory, how they read is what they mean”

    But consider:

    If I was talking on a mobile phone and all you heard me say was “it takes me 2 days to drive across my property”

    you could say “thats self explanatory, what he said is what he means – it takes him 2 days to drive across his property”

    That is all well and good until the third party eavesdropper wants to know more and starts putting my statement to the test with questions that have accrued in his mind

    What if he was talking to his mechanic?
    If I was talking to my mechanicit my statement might have more to do with the (lack) of performance of my car

    What if he was talking to his real estate agent?
    If I was talking to my real estate agent my statement might take on a whole new meaning in that it has more to do with the size of my property than it does the performance of my car

    The basic task of biblical exegesis is to address, as a whole and in parts, the historical questions: What was the author saying to the readers and why and who were the intended recipients of the authours message?

    These questions ultimately demand an answer at the broadest level in the form of a hypothesis to be tested against the verse-by-verse details. (NT Wright)

  86. yes, that might be what TVdude is saying and I might have misunderstood (and I hope that is the case)

    I agree with you that not every sermon need be an evangelistic sermon calling the ones who have been ONCE AND FOR ALL justified by grace alone, through faith alone in Christ alone to saving faith(Ephesians 1) – those who believe that Christ and his shed blood, justified them before God, FREELY forgave them of all of their sins and FREELY gave them eternal life…

    Honestly ask yourselfs right now – is that reality -“Good News” to you – or do you want something else, indeed – do you feel compelled you NEED to DO something else???

    is it such Good News that you that you now experience for the first time in your life “the peace that surpasses understanding” so much to the extent that you know, no matter what, nothing that you have done or can do or anything that anyone else does to you can snatch you out of His hand nor separate you from his love…?

    is it such Good News to you that it is the sight of the majesty of God that pervades all of life and all experience and that you no longer need to try and barter yourself out of your self chosen enslavement;

    is it such Good News to you that it is not so much about “what is in our hearts” as it is about “what is in His Heart”

    is it such Good News to you that you know that what ever you have done and whatever you now do, that Christ is a FAR greater Saviour than you are a sinner – and this proven by his glorious and victorious atoning death on the cross for you

    is it such Good News to you that you are now beginning to love the things that He loves and hate the things that He hates, not by your own power (so you cant boast) but by faith in the promise that it is Him that has started a good work in you and He is able to complete it without your synergistic contribution

    is it such Good News to you that when he graciously reveals His Majestic Holiness to you that your fear and trembling is not occasioned by the anticipation that His Righteous and Just Wrath will inevitably and justly fall upon you but a reverential fear of love, adoration of His Majesty

    is it such Good News to you that the only angst you feel to “move on” to the so-called “resurrected life” is not a corny substitute for tithing (among other pathetic evangelical rites) and being a “good christian” but resurrection so unique that it is the power of God for resurrection to life eternal

    I can tell you – its not Good News until you are ready to accept the bad news

  87. Teflon, Flamethrower, To Teddy, To RP, Deflector, Major Tom, Newsong, Baa are the same person. He’s done more then 10+ alias’ (I’ve forgotten a few names). Please ignore this fly in sheeps clothing. I’ll keep spraying him til he goes away.

    I will unfortunately have to remove content from peoples posts that may encourage the fly from posting.
    Shoo fly, don’t bother me.

  88. Depends if the works are a result of being in Christ, or not.

    Hence my re-direction to the story of Uzzah in 2 Samuel where well meaning people do what appears superficially to be the right thing, and yet God was not pleased to the point where he struck Uzzah down dead.

    Further David – a man after God’s own heart was unhappy with God for this.

    How dare God interfere with our plans, the way we think things should be done, or when we want to help God in ways we are not asked to.

    The absolute ball tearing temerity of God to do that!!

    The problem I have with C3 et al is not that they do good works, but rather everything I read indicates God is just a pretext.

    I’ve laid the challenge.

    Prove me wrong.

    I don’t have to do anything in that regard.

  89. And I would point out this a problem for all Christians inlcuding myself.

    Its just that pente’s seem with their bigger churches at least to have their own unique way of doing.

    Denial of course fixes everything, rendering everything weetness and light in the world.

  90. @mn
    “The problem I have with C3 et al is not that they do good works, but rather everything I read indicates God is just a pretext.”

    Allow me to pick you up mn on your statement “everything you read”. Is everything you read about C3 and their teaching taken from here and other such sites, or do you go to the source? Have you listened to any messages from C3 apart from ones regarding finances? What about the other teachers you have mentioned? Do you subscribe to any of their podcasts, or watch their TV shows, or receive their newsletters? I agree that a lot of what they teach involves finances, but it is an extremely bold statement to say that they teach exclusively on this subject and this subject alone at the expense of any other Godly teaching.

  91. @mn, I have embarked upon my quest to find you any teaching from these mega-pastors that isn’t specifically about finances. I have only just begun, and already I have found many examples of messages whose subject matter are not related to finances. I suggest you log into itunes and have a look at the podcast pages of Phil Pringle, Brian Houston and T.D. Jakes, check out the titles of their messages, and tell me if you see any on the subject of tithing, giving, or finances.

    Remember, your challenge was “If you can show that these prosperity focussed pastors and churches do actually preach the gospel of Jesus Christ – the biblical Gospel that actually makes more than a passing reference Scripture – as opposed to the Gospel of self enlightenment and empowerment through tithing then may be you have an audience that at least is prepared to listen to you.” I believe that I have done that.

  92. @tvdude – just a thought. Yes they do preach on other subjects each week and good messages too, but you must remember that within every single service they also have a “tithe and giving” message that goes on for 10 minutes. These are often given by people that wouldn’t normally preach an entire service and it is their opportunity to make a statement. It just gets a bit much. You don’t need a big rev up each week.

  93. @glittergirl

    “you must remember that within every single service they also have a “tithe and giving” message that goes on for 10 minutes. These are often given by people that wouldn’t normally preach an entire service and it is their opportunity to make a statement. It just gets a bit much. You don’t need a big rev up each week.”

    Agreed (and 10 minutes is actually quite short compared to some I have sat through). But mn’s challenge was to find ANY teaching that wasn’t related to tithing, giving, prosperity or finances. I will concede that it is altogether possible that there will be a reference to those subjects somewhere in some messages not specifically related to finances, but as I said, mn’s OP was saying that these preachers only ever preach on these subjects and never preach the gospel, which is patently untrue.

  94. If they’re not talking about money, they’re talking about the House of God. If they’re not talking about the house of God they’re talking about gnostic faith. If they’re not talking about gnostic faith they’re talking about successful living. If they’re not talking about successful living they’ll talk about spiritual anointings or revivals. If they are not talking about spiritually shonky things they’ll talk about leadership and success. If they are not talking about leadership and success, they are talking about vision builders, ‘your best life now’, authority, dreams and desires.

    Throw in the name ‘Jesus’, add a few ‘amens’, add lots of water and throw in a bad understanding of the gospel and you’ve got a typical C3 message.

    People get so hungry they do swallow bones when meat isn’t offered to them. Then one day, a better gospel message may be preached. But these are rare. Far more damaging teaching is taught then biblical teaching.

    I’ve been listening to their podcasts and have read most of Pringle’s books. I honestly don’t know what to quote. They are that bad. Seriously bad. I’ve also watched Pringle on TV. He talks with his art behind him, then it goes to him preaching. Every few minutes, at the bottom of the screen, stupid adverts pop up advertising his books, merchandise and other things like himself. One advert that pops up says you can follow Pringle on Twitter.

    If that is not bad enough, when advertising to his own congregation, online leadership classes, all of his books are used as props in front of him.

    It is important to note that C3 is being groomed by NAR teachings.

    Simply, if the bad teaching outweighs the good teaching, don’t go back to that bad tree.

  95. @ Specks – you forgot to mention most Sundays are spent promoting the next big event. It’s an event driven church. Got to keep the buzz going……:)

  96. Looks like TVdude is into embracing all variants of the Christian faith in the name of unity.

    Why not throw the Dali-Lama in there too and Mohammad and while we’re at it, the Pope as well? All ‘good guys’ who no doubt have their hearts in the right places surely?

    The real issue is, while some elements of the Christian faith are preached by Houston, Pringle etc, it becomes a case of “spiritual death by slow drip indoctrination” and the congregants are slowly sucked into a world of ‘your best life now’ BS.
    Hence the term in the scriptures of “bewitched” and “beguiled” – it’s not like it’s an out and out heresy but a subtle hard-to-detect one and that is why it is so effective.

    Pull your head out of your rear-end TVdude and wake up before it’s too late.

    Please note – Mel Gibson appears courtesy of Blah-Blah

  97. I would go so far as to say that TVdude is a heretic and has denied the faith by embracing Houston/Pringle/TD Jakes and the prosperity crew in the name of a false and deceptive form of “Christian love” that says we ought never to criticize or be bold enough to call a spade a spade.

    Tragic. Totally tragic.

  98. yeah that too Teddy. the crowds have to be *pumped* for upcoming events!

    what’s so bad is that I can actually predict what they often will talk about each sunday if I’ve heard that C3 is going through more financial trouble or not many people are attending.

    sometimes even in a service, I can rightly assume where the message is going to go to.

  99. TVDude, I do totally respect that you are working full time, and also taking on board pastoring of a church, plus not preaching on tithing. That demonstrates a faith in God’s provision.

    Mosco, I liked your post on the Good News.

    What happened at my ex-church when it took on more of a C3OF flavour, was that rather than preaching on a broad spectrum of topics from scripture, as it had previously, the preaching became very oriented towards moulding the congregation to suit the pastor’s vision, which was in line with the C3 movements 2020 vision. The breadth and diversity of teaching we’d had previously was lost. Shame too, since the pastor had been capable of that previously.

    It appears to me as though when churches take on ‘visions’ that involve building the organisation or even more so, if that includes building a physical edifice, their path becomes distorted. If these things come about as a result of following Christ, fine. If they come about because of men’s ambition, phrased as though it serves Christ, but really maybe serving their own needs of various kinds, then they lose their way. C3OF was a better place before their first building fund started, with a broader spectrum of teaching back then. At the time I left, there was NO teaching on anything other than giving related subjects. No doubt that moderated later, but still, it has never ceased.

    What is more, the related doctrines have broadened and become more sophisticated. The teachings related to obedience, submission and even forgiveness are slanted to encourage people to stay put in their church, and to fear what might happen if they do something different.

    So these things cease to represent Christ. Though there are people in their midst, including pastors, who do seek to serve Him.

  100. Gotta agree with Teddy – to try and present TD Fakes as anything but a heretic is just impossible by his heretical standards on the essential Christian doctrine of the Trinity – he is a heretical modalist so whether proceeds from his mouth must be thrown out in light of that truth…

    @TVdude – you do agree that modalism is a heresy dont you?

  101. Still. Josh Kelsey and James Murray seem to be the only two I know that stick to more of a gospel message when they preach.

    Unfortunately, young Kelsey is being put under a lot of pressure to conform to the other teachings there.

  102. @Blah-blah, or Mel Gibson, whatever you want to call yourself, shut up! You are just proving yourself to be more puerile and ignorant with every post. Give it up mate!

    @teddy, thanks for the link, but I don’t tend to regard someone else’s opinion of someone else’s opinion as being the ultimate authority regarding such a serious accusation as heresy.

    @mosco

    “to try and present TD Fakes as anything but a heretic is just impossible by his heretical standards on the essential Christian doctrine of the Trinity – he is a heretical modalist so whether proceeds from his mouth must be thrown out in light of that truth…”

    Really? The trinity is the essential doctrine of Christianity? Laying aside the fact that the word trinity isn’t even mentioned in the bible, whether God is one being in three manifestations or is three separate beings doesn’t change the fact that we are only saved through our belief, faith and relationship with Jesus. This is the essential doctrine of Christianity. I mean, come on, this is getting so ridiculous!

    @specks, the challenge from mn was to present ANY teaching not about tithing, prosperity or finances from these preachers. As I said earlier, it appears that you are so desperate to find fault with anything that doesn’t line up with your own narrow definition of the gospel that you have given up any semblance of reason. I have presented just a few messages as proof, yet, not satisfied with that, you throw around wildly over-generalized comments to try and prove that you are right and I am wrong. Remember, I sat under PP’s teaching for 16 years, and I still listen and watch the TV show, and, yes, he occasionally talks about these subjects, but they are not exclusively on these types of subjects. Your comments are therefore wrong.

  103. @ TVdude – you are heading for a major fail in a theology exam. Are you a graduate of C3 Bible College – I was. I got a very high mark for what I now know was extremely bad eisegesis of Habbakuk (thanks to Mark Saundercock not qualified to reach OT).

    “@teddy, thanks for the link, but I don’t tend to regard someone else’s opinion of someone else’s opinion as being the ultimate authority regarding such a serious accusation as heresy.”

    Carm.org is one of many highly respected theology sites but if YOU don’t agree with it, it must be wrong. Go to any other “highly respected” site and they will say the same thing about T.D.Jakes – heretic.

  104. @ TVdude re T.D.Jakes……..

    “Sabellianism has made a strong comeback. The hallmark of “Oneness Pentecostalism” is a denial of the Trinity and a view of the Godhead that is indistinguishable from ancient Sabellianism. Yet many — perhaps most — in the evangelical movement today are perfectly willing to ignore the lessons from Scripture and history, set aside the whole disagreement as something entirely nonessential, and embrace contemporary Sabellianism as a legitimate expression of authentic Christian faith. For at least a decade now, evangelical best-seller lists have included a steady stream of works by authors and musicians who deny the doctrine of the Trinity. (p. 117 “The Truth War” – John Macarthur)

  105. @teddy

    “you are heading for a major fail in a theology exam.”

    Really? By whose reckoning? Yours? Look, to be honest, your opinion of scripture means very little to me teddy, same with specks, blah-blah’s, mn’s, Mosco’s, RP’s Carm.org, or anyone else’s. My authority is God’s word alone, and I interpret scripture by scripture, not through someone else’s opinions or prejudices. I don’t bring God’s Word down to the level of my own personal experiences, I place my experiences under God’s Word.

    “Carm.org is one of many highly respected theology sites but if YOU don’t agree with it, it must be wrong. Go to any other “highly respected” site and they will say the same thing about T.D.Jakes – heretic.”

    Highly respected by whom? People hurt and bitter about the church? People with a grudge to bear? Not a very glowing endorsement teddy. Any website that feels it has the right to publicly criticise and denigrate ministers and ministries based solely upon the website author’s own opinions and special interpretations of scripture is not a valid resource I am afraid.

  106. Wow, you just challenged every major theological institution on the planet! Where did you get your degree in ancient languages to help you interpret so clearly? Just curious. Where do you go for in-depth theological resource material?

  107. Dude: “Really? By whose reckoning? Yours? Look, to be honest, your opinion of scripture means very little to me teddy, same with specks, blah-blah’s, mn’s, Mosco’s, RP’s Carm.org, or anyone else’s. My authority is God’s word alone, and I interpret scripture by scripture, not through someone else’s opinions or prejudices. I don’t bring God’s Word down to the level of my own personal experiences, I place my experiences under God’s Word.”

    Then whose opinion do you value? If you only value your own it is a bit limiting isn’t it, and prone to error? (If I limited my views to what I thought I would be right royally screwed – I know that I don’t know).

    Your standard reply appears to be to point blank refuse to acknowledge any other authority or view that’s being proffered without even looking at it.

    That’s fine, and ultimately we all are accountable for our own decisions, or failure to make them, but who do you take your cues from?

  108. TVDude, given that our opinion of scripture means very little to you, I do not understand why you are here. Despite the differences you will find amongst us, we all base our views on scripture, even where they disagree (eg: women in ministry) just as you say you do.

    If our opinions are by definition wrong or of no value because in your view, we are denigrating or criticising ministries, or alternatively, because we are bitter and twisted or have a grudge to bear, then clearly you cannot be interested in genuinely listening to us. You are unable to really engage with us. This is worth you noticing, since you lead a church, and people will come through just like us, from time to time. They won’t know to start with that you don’t value them unless they agree with you, and they may even end up ‘bitter and twisted’ when they leave once they discover your attitude.

    The only reason you can be here is to represent those whom you feel we denigrate, or to change us.

    God will bring any change, not you. If you will not genuinely listen or value our views, then you will be unable to really engage with us. We won’t be able to reflect on things together, just argue. Clearly if we don’t respect your views, we won’t convince you of anything either. It’s a stalemate. So – what is the point?

    To FL’s credit, he did try to genuinely engage with stuff a lot of the time, and we had discussions where he contributed a lot. It may not have worked out in the end, but you will not get as far unless you are able to do better than just dismiss any views that appear here on the basis of our bitterness.

    I am not bitter. I don’t think I’m twisted, though others might. 🙂 I don’t have a theological degree. I am not a teacher. I do look for discussions with those who want to reflect on things and learn in the process, in a genuine way. I’m not interested in bagging out ministries even. I am interested in opposing doctrines that are harmful.

    There are a handful of things that I know are wrong because they don’t reflect Christ. These days I’m less certain that anyone including me is right than ever before, and that is in a large part due to seeing through what was taught to me as right, and not trusting leaders any more to teach without being blinded by their own culture or self interest. Everything needs to be tested and challenged, as painful as that can be.

    However, I do know Christ. I am more grateful to Him than ever. Now if you as a leader will offer opinions and actually respect the responses, rather than arguing them away based on your view of our emotion or bias, you might get somewhere – and if not, at least contribute something we value. You generalise about us, in the same way you accuse us of generalising about pastors. We are not all of the same view on everything or everyone, but we all have things of value to offer.

  109. @TVdude I am not meaning to be rude in any way but if you dont believe in the clear revelation of the Creator Triune God revealed as three persons in one being then I take back my previous statement that you have no earthly business behind a pulpit and now say that you have no business holding yourself out as a Christian either and as a so-called teacher and herald of Gods word – that makes you a Heretic

    Whether or not you deny the Trinity – which it appears you do, you have asserted that it is a non essential Christian doctrine – thats heresy

    The statement “whether God is one being in three manifestations or is three separate beings doesn’t change the fact that we are only saved through our belief, faith and relationship with Jesus.” not only both attempts here an an ignorant misrepresentation of the Trinity, neither being orthodox – this statement is heresy

    P.S. where is my response to our debate about Hebrews?

  110. Look, to be honest, your opinion of scripture means very little to me teddy, same with specks, blah-blah’s, mn’s, Mosco’s, RP’s, Carm.org, or anyone else’s.

    Epic fail TVdude – you left off Mel Gibson.

    You accused me previosly of ignoring 2000 years of Christian history and now it appears, here you are DOING THAT WHICH YOU ACCUSE ME OF?!

    Another epic fail.

  111. There’s certain times in life where you should throw the towel in and admit defeat… TVdude – this is one of the times.

  112. @teddy

    “Where did you get your degree in ancient languages to help you interpret so clearly? Just curious. Where do you go for in-depth theological resource material?”

    As I said before, I go to the source – the Word of God. Scripture interprets scripture. For the meaning of particular words in the Greek and Hebrew I will refer to Strong’s and Vines, and I will check out what Matthew Henry and Adam Clarke have to say, but ultimately, if what the commentaries say doesn’t line up with the Word I discard it, and believe me, this happens more than I’d like. Henrys and Clarkes are the purely the opinions of the authors, and are written based upon their own world-views and mindsets, so I don’t take what they say as the gospel truth, so to speak in everything they write.

    @mn

    “Wow, you just challenged every major theological institution on the planet!”

    Let me ask you mn. Who holds the final authority on what is scripturally correct? Religious institutions, or God’s Word? I heard some rubbish taught at the institution I trained at, so I know that while bible colleges and seminaries are helpful in gaining a grasp of what theology is all about, they are not the final authority.

    “If you only value your own it is a bit limiting isn’t it, and prone to error? (If I limited my views to what I thought I would be right royally screwed – I know that I don’t know).”

    Did I say that I only value my own opinion? No. I said that yours or anyone else’s opinions and views of scripture don’t sway me from what God’s Word says. You say that people such as PP, Houston, Jakes and the like are wrong because they teach things you don’t agree with. Those are your opinions and it is those opinions, and your own interpretation of scripture to support your hypotheses, that I choose to not be swayed by.

    “Your standard reply appears to be to point blank refuse to acknowledge any other authority or view that’s being proffered without even looking at it.”

    Did I say that mn? No. I have looked at every argument presented here on signposts, and for the most part they have come from a pre-determined mindset and prejudice, or from mis-interpretation of scripture. There is very little here that I would find to be uplifting or helpful in my own life, therefore that is why I say that your opinions of scripture mean very little to my own walk with God. I certainly acknowledge that there are teachers and preachers whose teaching is authoritative and worth listening to, but this is not that place I am afraid.

    @RP

    “If our opinions are by definition wrong or of no value because in your view, we are denigrating or criticising ministries, or alternatively, because we are bitter and twisted or have a grudge to bear, then clearly you cannot be interested in genuinely listening to us. You are unable to really engage with us.”

    You know what RP? I tried, and I tried, and I tried. Take a look through the abuse I have copped over the last few weeks and you will see that I honestly attempted to engage. But it became quite evident that this place really is a haven for the disenfranchised and bitter, and anyone who disagrees is shouted down. The bible says that we will know them by their fruit, and to be frank, the fruit here is quite rotten. There is no love here, there is no grace, there is no compassion, there is no joy. You can try and deny that all you want, but it’s true.

    “you will not get as far unless you are able to do better than just dismiss any views that appear here on the basis of our bitterness.”

    True RP, and I have experienced this from my first post on signposts. My views have been dismissed and ridiculed and I have been called names and abused purely because I am a pastor and am attempting to offer an alternate view.

    “You generalise about us,”

    You are right there RP. My apologies. From now on when I say “all of you” I am referring to specks, blah-blah, mn, Mosco and teddy just to clarify!

  113. @mosco

    “Whether or not you deny the Trinity – which it appears you do, you have asserted that it is a non essential Christian doctrine – thats heresy”

    Did I say I deny the trinity? Show me where I said that.

    Now, can you please show me in scripture where the trinity is taught as an essential doctrine worthy of damnation if not adhered to, and:

    1. Can you please use proper exegesis to show us how those scriptures support your argument?

    2. Can you also please use scholarly secondary sources (commentaries etc) in support of your arguments?

    Thanks

  114. You are bizarre TVdude.

    You have a go at SP for being ‘abusive’ and yet, if we point out any wrong doing by a Pente mouthpiece, we are suddenly the designated a*sholes in the Christian world and are full of rotten fruit.

    So in effect, you knock us according to your own standards but won’t apply those same standards to those we call into question.

    You’re just another hypocrite with a title in the church world. Good luck to you, I do sincerely hope God reveals your arrogance to you someday.

  115. @TVdude – We all yell at each other. Go back over last few years, I was the Clayton’s FL. I’m an ex-Pentecostal, now reformed, and that’s a position many will argue with (even though they’re wrong) :). We are a family, we do fight, it’s just your turn to clarify the position you take to our satisfaction! 🙂

  116. I am the author of the Clayton’s FL comment I think….tee hee.

    Dude…unless you can do better than that you’ve lost.

    You really have placed both yourself and us in positions equally distant from having any chance of being able to have any impact at all.

    To paraphrase you in anticipation…

    MN where did I (dude) say that?

    In anticipation again, you didn’t…I did.

    Good luck.

    And just to add…no man (or woman) is an island, and we don’t live in our own individual states of vacuum.

    At screamingly impossible best you have to interpret what the words on the pages we call Scripture mean.

    Who the hell says you have interpreted correctly, since it is quite patent in your view that we have nothing to say on that.

    And I don’t recall you once mentioning the Holy Spirit. I may be wrong on that, but if I’m not are you then staking a claim of divinity?

    I suggest you read yourself back.

    There is no point in discussing with you, although I’m intrigued as to how will deal with this ‘criticism’.

  117. @teddy

    “We are a family, we do fight, it’s just your turn to clarify the position you take to our satisfaction!”

    If that is true I can live with that!

  118. @mn

    “unless you can do better than that you’ve lost.”

    I didn’t know this was a competition mn. All I am attempting to do is to suggest that you guys think outside of your closed-off mindsets.

    “To paraphrase you in anticipation…MN where did I (dude) say that? In anticipation again, you didn’t…I did.”

    And you’re totally wrong mn.

    “At screamingly impossible best you have to interpret what the words on the pages we call Scripture mean. Who the hell says you have interpreted correctly….”

    Agreed mn. But the way the word “heretic” is thrown around on this website it is obvious that you guys believe that you have. You so confidently ascribe eternal damnation to people like PP, TD Jakes et al based upon your own interpretations of certain scriptures and doctrines, so I think the expression “pot calling the kettle black” applies here.

    “And I don’t recall you once mentioning the Holy Spirit. I may be wrong on that, but if I’m not are you then staking a claim of divinity?”

    If I haven’t mentioned the Holy Spirit it is not by design. The Holy Spirit is how we gain revelation from the Word of God, absolutely. Not sure where you are going with the second part of your statement.

  119. @TVdude

    If you are genuinely interested in the doctrine of the Trinity (and I hold no hope out that you are)- what I have here (a link to a scholarly article) Its pretty long and may require that you have already done a “lil of that-there book-lernin” which you are clearly bereft of…

    But anyway – it answers all your questions and provides indepth biblical exegesis, references to other scholarly articles, an examination of the historic creeds of the faith, an indepth analysis of the scripture in the original languages, crtitcal evaluations of early historic and more modern heresies on the Trinity

    There it is – nuff said!
    http://vintage.aomin.org/CHALC.html

    Further than that Im done with you quite honestly and happy to agree to disagree – You arent interested nor are you capable of interacting, at least in any meaningful way… The record above clearly shows it – among other queries you havent replied to my analysis on Hebrews at all

    By your own words and your confession your clearly not a Christian but an apostate and in regard to your teaching/pastoring role – your a wolf who is sadly leading others astray

    Now knowing this and being able to show that I have given you a fair go – Im going back to taking the piss out your overwhelming ignorance – its more fun anyway!!

  120. @ fly – “Blue sleeps faster thanTuesday” is an appropriate comment to make at this point before someone is told to buzz off.

    Ugly senseless response, unworthy of even a C3 pastor. The ones I know (C3) would be shocked to read such nonsense. Especially those who read and appreciate John MacArthur, Luther’s theology and truly understand and are drawn to the doctrines of grace.

  121. Dude: “You so confidently ascribe eternal damnation to people like PP, TD Jakes et al based upon your own interpretations of certain scriptures and doctrines….”

    Please show me where I have done this..

  122. @Fly – no mate not at all,I was a Pentecostal(for some years) and now I go to a protestant denomination characterised by Calvinist doctrines. So yes Im a Calvinist.

    Im not against Pentecostalism “with a seatbelt” – I sure am against the excesses of Pentecostalism and Charismainia

    As to the continuity of the gifts – I am a bit agnostic on it- I dont think you can make an air tight case from scripture that they have ceased – its just not something I spend a great deal of cerebral energy on to tell the truth…

    Im not even against tithing, save to the extent that it is presented in the quid-pro-quo manner that many modern churches present it because doing so conflates law and Gospel which need to be distinguished.

    Dont really care if you dont believe in monergistic regeneration, predestination, bondage of the will to sin (not the “dismissal of human will” which is NOT taught in ANY of Calvins writings and amazingly ignorant of you because you said you loved Luther yet fail to realise that he wrote a book on this very subject called “Bondage of the Will”)

    Anything else…

  123. @Fly – my turn for questions:

    did you do your certificate 1 in christin ministry at Sunshine Tafe with TVdude? and if so – doesnt that make you a bit overqualified for a C3 pastor?

  124. @Mosco

    “what I have here (a link to a scholarly article) Its pretty long and may require that you have already done a “lil of that-there book-lernin” which you are clearly bereft of…”

    A scholarly article? No, a link to an apologetics website that supports your view of scripture! Surely you can do better than that!

    “By your own words and your confession your clearly not a Christian but an apostate and in regard to your teaching/pastoring role – your a wolf who is sadly leading others astray. Now knowing this and being able to show that I have given you a fair go – Im going back to taking the piss out your overwhelming ignorance – its more fun anyway!!”

    Wow Mosco, such anger, such pride, such self-righteousness! Oh wait, I forgot – no one’s angry or proud here. There’s no bitterness! We’re just one big happy family sharing ideas and occasionally having a friendly squabble around the dinner table!

  125. @mn

    “You so confidently ascribe eternal damnation to people like PP, TD Jakes et al based upon your own interpretations of certain scriptures and doctrines….”

    Please show me where I have done this..”

    Sorry mn, it was a collective “you”. There’s been a lot of posts recently so not sure whether you had said anything like that, but it has been said by several people here

  126. @Mosco

    “Book-lernin “pastor” – go do some book-lernin so we can have an adult conversation”

    An adult conversation would be great Mosco. Are you capable of it?

  127. Dude if you have been lurking for some time her as you say you would know I don’t go in for saying people are going to hell – even if they are heretics – because that is not my call. And it is my view that is not anyone else’s here who is living and breathing on this planet.

    In terms of the rest of this so-called debate, the simple fact is majority of contributors here (not me) have been on the pente band wagon and got off, or would dearly love to get off.

    The main contention as I’m sure you get is that by and large something other than the Gospel is often the centre of things, and if it is it is a fleeting dalliance – and that the consequence varies between Christian lite and serious damage.

    Christian lite has many shapes and forms, but the damage which many have experienced here first hand and been regaled with by family, friends and acquaintance cannot be simply dismissed by the false doctrine of tiptoeing around the elephant in the room.

    You are talking to people who have taken their lumps.

    If you are serious about dealing with that then revise your strategy, otherwise I think your wife’s advice is pretty good.

    My question to you is why do want have your tuppence worth with us self opinionated, deluded miscreants?

    There are three possibilities:

    You think we are wrong and are hoping to change our minds with the irresistible force of your logic and biblical arguments;

    You have doubts and are looking for some reason to give them a bit more credence or ditch them;

    you want an argument.

    In the latter case most of this thread has been abuse, and arguments are down the hall.

    In the case of the former two, I can’t see much of a contribution either way. I would hope that might be able to see passed some of the crap to the guts of the issues here and actually respond to them.

    Any thought you might have had that because you’re a pastor you might get some cheap points because people here would be so impressed with that….I hope that thought has been lost.

    FL can abuse me all he likes. Been there, done that, don’t care.

  128. Everyone calling each other names is pretty pointless.

    I haven’t lost the will to live, but I have lost the will to read any more on this thread.

    Shalom

  129. @ fly – Speaking in tongues – been there, done that. Babble, that is. What is promoted at C3 and most pentecostal churches, is not the biblical tongues with interpretation as a sign to unbelievers. Private prayer language? Been there, done that. Babble again. Experience is not the measure, love praying in English now. Do I have the holy Spirit? In full and complete measure at conversion.

    What have I lost? Nothing – it was deception. What have I gained? Truth and a freedom to really enjoy a life of faith and hope in the Lord who chose me in Him before the foundation of the world.

  130. @MN – didn’t know you were a Lutheran – one of the most powerful messeages I have ever heard (seriously) was Dr Rod Rosenbladt (a fantastic Lutheran Guy -Professor of Theology at Concordia University and one of the commentators on the famous “White Horse Inn” (THE BEST podcast by the way)) “The Gospel for Those Broken By the Church”

    If anyone wants it, I have it in MP3 and I will get it to you by hook or by crook – it is a MUST LISTEN

  131. @ Mosco – I have that message on my Ipod, on my computer, saved as PDF! Brilliant!

    I suppose you’re a fan of “Fighting For The Faith” with Chris Rosebrough too? He put me on to Dr Rod Rosenbladt.

  132. Love Chris Rosebrough – Did you listen to his recent sermon review on Brian Houston on a recent litany of unbiblical Christless crud that he spewed in a sermon at his palace

    – Talk about on the money!

  133. @ Mosco – I have 7 podcasts to listen to before I get to the latest (but then Chris will update his podcast and I’ll be playing catch up again!) Listened to Chris Rosebrough since his inception, what a providential find that was.

    Here’s another Rosenbladt treat …

    “The good news that our wills are bound”

  134. I haven’t made a comment on here for a while, and I don’t really know where to start – except that I actually understand where most of you are coming from.

    The irony is that most of the people here surely love God with all their hearts.

    Just wanted to make one comment though. To TVDude – I think the word heretic was used because of your comment which seemed to imply that views on the trinity don’t matter so much. And that might be something you could think about. The heretic label was thrown around because in church history, a right understand of the trinity was certainly a big issue as you no doubt know. Maybe now it isn’t – witness the acceptance of T.D. Jakes. But, that would have been difficult in times past.

    As an example, and maybe people aren’t interested in Pentecostal history – but it’s considered that the first Pentecostal church in Australia was the Good News Hall pastored by Janet Lancaster. She not only preached annihilation opposed to enternal punishment in hell, but had unorthodox teaching on the trinity. That was enough for Amie Semple MacPherson (Four Square) to distance herself from Lancester even though she came on a preaching trip to OZ on lancaster’s invitation. So, it’s always been a big issue.

    Personally, lately, I am loathe to call someone a heretic or not a Christian on the basis of Trinity. And one reason is that if you did a survey and asked Pastors, Sunday School teachers and Christians of all denominations to write a page on the trinity, you might find there are a lot more “heretics” than you think.

    So, although there are a lot of issues being fought over here, the heresy one is a biggie – and probably magnified things.

    (Seems to have gotten nasty here lately..)

    Just one thing TVDude, maybe you could refrain from saying “all of you” so much. I have commented here a lot recently, and probably said things that I would delete if I had the power, but I am no Calvinist or cessationalist. I am probably schizophrenic but I can listen to and get something out of Driscoll, Macarthur, Pringle, Houston and Joel Osteen – even knowing what they all say and think about each other. And I am not as bitter as you may think. But I don’t know if I am included in the “all of you”. I assume I must be.

    I do know (comes from being married) that once the sarcasm and point scoring starts, that meaningful discussion is pretty difficult.

    I read one of your longer posts, and your testimony about being hurt but being able to go on. That’s a really significant victory. But maybe, because you went through hurt, and got through it, you assume that some people here have just gone through what you did, but are still stuck in the hurt. Whereas for some it’s not so much the hurt they are speaking out of, but an absolute commitment to truth, and making sure others are not hurt by what they perceive as bad doctrine and practices.

    This post was originally about Kong Hee. He made a statement that pagans will be drawn to the gospel because of our successful lives. Actually it’s a very pragmatic realistic statement esp in Asia! – even if it isn’t something we’d like to think is true, and not something that we want to see as a good thing that should be used.
    But, put it this way – judging by the state of the church and the way we talk to each other – I can’t see many who are drawn because of how much we love each other…..

    Which brings me to a crazy idea. Maybe we could be nicer to each other. Pursue peace, be kind to one another, prefer one another, and teach with meekness those who oppose the truth.
    (And we all think that the other guy/gal is opposed to the truth).

    Wesley and Whitefield could end up as friends – imagine that.

  135. Mosco

    not a Lutheran.

    ‘Been’ a congregationalist, presbyterian, and now currently belong to a small heretical sects called baptists.

    Have attended pente churches and been impressed where it has been unambiguously clear that the Spirit was involved – which coincidentally had nothing to do with miracles.

    Have been equally unimpressed where it has been clearly BS – have seen both.

    Either way not my cuppa tea.

    I have been mightily impressed in those very few instances I have seen where people I know and trust have received a word in tongues, which has then been interpreted.

    A rarity for me.

    Churchman is right in that the world will know us by our love for one another……

    Hope not too many are reading at the moment….

  136. @ Churchman – Interesting thought, I wonder what Wesley and Whitfield would have to say about churches today, particularly the prosperity gospel, the misuse of gifts, lack of sound doctrine being taught, etc.

    Even Spurgeon despaired of the “downgrade ” of the church in his day. http://www.spurgeon.org/downgrd.htm

    Seems there nothing new under the sun. Or is it just the introduction of humanism that infected the church in the last century or so/

  137. @mn, even though I have been lurking here for a long time, it has only been the last few weeks where I have been paying attention to who says what. Even with all of this back-and-forthing I am having trouble keeping up, especially as I seem to be copping it from all sides. If I have attributed anything to you that you didn’t say then I apologise, and that goes for everyone else too.

    As to why I am here, I have been asking myself this same question all afternoon. As I have said previously, I was originally bothered by the one-sided debate, so I piped up to point out that there are always two sides, and that the other side’s opinions where being ignored and/or pilloried, as well as to draw attention to the wildly inaccurate descriptions of all pastors everywhere and to try and make you guys think of winding back the over-generalising. As I began to post however I was increasingly becoming the victim of bullying, abuse and name calling. I am thick skinned, so it didn’t bother me too much, but this abuse and name calling was becoming increasingly frequent. Soon, rather than being able to continue with any semblance of intelligent debate, I found myself answering juvenile and puerile questions and demands. On reflection I should have just ignored it, but I love a challenge, and any opportunity to delve deeper into God’s Word is something I relish. But every time I thought that things were getting back on track, another round of distractions were thrown at me. The problem is it sidetracked me, and I began to lose focus on why I was on here in the first place. First and foremost I still am attempting to try and make you guys perhaps re-think your long standing prejudices against Pentecostalism and those ministers you so despise. I don’t expect you to change your minds, just loosen your dogmatic opposition.

    Do I think you’re wrong? Not all of you, and not in everything you believe. I have seen many instances of wrong interpretations of scripture, and plenty of pre-suppositions and baseless accusations, but I have also seen some interesting issues raised. I have certainly seen plenty of evidence of spiritual pride and arrogance, and I have attempted to draw attention to this, especially since these are the exact things that many of you accuse pente pastors of doing.

    Have I been a little strong with my language? I may have, but I love a good argument, and I always give as good as I get. I am admittedly a bit of a hot-head, but I don’t believe I have gone too far. If you feel that I have I apologise.

    “The main contention as I’m sure you get is that by and large something other than the Gospel is often the centre of things, and if it is it is a fleeting dalliance – and that the consequence varies between Christian lite and serious damage.”

    And this is my other point. As I wrote earlier, we believers should move on from the teaching of Christ and Him crucified and be fed the meat of scripture. Sure, the prosperity message may be like a lump in your throat, but there is certainly enough said about the subject in God’s Word to warrant calling it “meat”, even if it is unpalatable to you. I have already stated that I believe some of what is taught on this subject is incorrect theology, but it not up to us to decide whether the teacher is a heretic or not. Man, I see that word thrown around so much here I swear I have been transported back in time to the Spanish Inquisition!

    So why am I here? Because I want to be.

  138. I should add that in those instances where the word has been given and interpreted it has been so foreign that it scared the crap out of a number of people there – my take on observing someone else’s experience only.

    May be that would be blase for many pente’s but again I would say the word of God being released in any environs is anything but blase…

  139. @SP Say what you want friends to placate the situation but if you attack the very person of Jesus Christ – the mystery of devine personality – either implicitly or expressly, or directly or indirectly then be prepared to dialogue for some time

  140. @ MN – even after 22 years I can honestly say I never saw a real “gift” in operation biblically at C3. I find that really sad, because I’m not a cessationist either, just don’t believe what’s practiced there is the real deal.

    The only time I saw tongues and interpretation was at the Sydney Town Hall where a Salvation Army officer stood and declared he wished to give a message in tongues and he would wait on the interpretation, then given by another, and really it was just scripture. A sense of the presence of God too.

  141. @churchman

    “Just one thing TVDude, maybe you could refrain from saying “all of you” so much.”

    You are dead right. I have acknowledged this previously and I apologise to you again. As “all of you” 😉 who post would know, when you are writing a reply to a post, especially one where you have been pilloried, sometimes your thoughts come so swiftly and you write as fast as the ideas come into your head, and often those kinds of language conventions get missed. Certainly there are a majority here who would fall into my premise of “all of you”, but not all of you do!

  142. I have used the word heretic occasionally.

    Whether used rightly or wrongly, I wouldn’t jump to the conclusion that equates to hell and damnation.

    I think we are all heretical to an extent, and plus RP’s other half is Heretic, and I wouldn’t want to make it personal.

    As for prosperity stuff?

    As I said I am not a pente, but I honestly as it is quite clearly purveyed around the traps I think it is a pox on the holy catholic church.

    I don’t back away from that. I can’t see it as meat, but rather sugar coated poison.

    If you want to talk about meat there are plenty of other things:

    providence – on topic
    how do we deal with bad things happening to good people including Christians (very unprosperous)
    what does worship really mean
    how do we hear the Spirit; have lost the art/discipline of listening?
    when do we do something and when do we wait on the Lord
    etc etc

    these are just a few of gazillions of meat topics that could be discussed

    Prosperity doctrine is not one of them, which for the most part appears to be giving to get

  143. @teddy

    “even after 22 years I can honestly say I never saw a real “gift” in operation biblically at C3”

    Really? Were you looking in the right place? I saw plenty every day. I saw many miraculous healings (I myself have been personally healed of several serious illnesses and injuries over the years), I saw people who thought tongues were stupid suddenly break out in a heavenly language, I saw words of knowledge, I saw prophecy that came to pass. I guess though that it depends on your interpretation of real gifts.

  144. @mn

    “how do we deal with bad things happening to good people including Christians (very unprosperous)
    what does worship really mean
    how do we hear the Spirit; have lost the art/discipline of listening?
    when do we do something and when do we wait on the Lord”

    Entirely agreed. And I have sat under this kind of teaching at C3, as well as several other pente churches.

    “Prosperity doctrine is not one of them, which for the most part appears to be giving to get”

    Who says it’s not one of them? You? You speak as if your opinion is absolute and no correspondence shall be entered into. And whilst I do see some erroneous teaching that suggests that God is our Holy ATM, to say that the prosperity message is just about that is wrong. It encompasses many aspects of God’s character that have nothing to do with the give to get theology.

  145. I believed the heavily language was real too, I don’ t anymore. I got over the shock of being deceived after about 4 years of solid “meat” ( 🙂 ), reading and studying God’s Word in context, historically contextually etc etc. I believe God heals as He wishes, not as I demand. I’ve seen healings apart from C3, that didn’t have to claimed and re-affirmed over and over again as if you could lose it.

  146. Funny, I’ve seen more answered prayer at our Anglican church than I saw at C3. No yelling, no babbling, no demanding, even, shock/horror, saying if it is His Will. Because sometimes He says no.

  147. Dude: “Who says it’s not one of them? You? You speak as if your opinion is absolute and no correspondence shall be entered into. And whilst I do see some erroneous teaching that suggests that God is our Holy ATM, to say that the prosperity message is just about that is wrong. It encompasses many aspects of God’s character that have nothing to do with the give to get theology.”

    You may be right but that is my opinion and apart from anything else I am entitled to express it.

    Oh forgive me because its me – “you” – that has the opinion. How foolish of me.

    And as I said that is my view and I don’t back away from it.

    What do you want me to do?

    Crumble because you have questioned the very worth of my opinion simply because it is me and I expressed it?

    You don’t know who I am, where I come from, what I know or don’t know.

    If you don’t want to be “bullied” you could lose the belittling alpha attitude yourself.

    Goodnight.

  148. @teddy

    ” I believe God heals as He wishes”

    So what you’re saying is that God chooses not to heal some people? He chooses to let them die? Why would anyone in their right mind follow a God who treats his children like they’re in a lottery – sorry, you have a chance to live but you probably won’t? If you truly understood God’s character and understood scripture, you would see that when Jesus uttered the words “It is finished” and drew His last breath, our healing was provided. Every one of us not only received our salvation and the forgiveness of our sins, but healing, wholeness and restoration. Look up the meaning of the Greek word “sozo” which is the word for saved in the New Testament.

  149. @teddy

    “Because sometimes He says no.”

    Once again you show your lack of knowledge of God’s character and His Word. His Word says that every promise of His is yes and amen. Did He promise healing? Yes. Did He promise that he hears your prayers and answers them? Yes. This I am afraid is wrong theology.

  150. Teddy, I watched up until the 32 minute mark of Rosenbladt. And will watch the rest later. Great video -good speaker. Not sure if he could hold a youth group crowd in the way Pat Mesiti could though …

    It answered some questions i had re the reformed position on the will. e.g Reformed thinking allows for men to make ethical decisions, and the exercise of free will regarding things like jobs etc (column B things not pertaining to heavenly things – ie our justification).

    Okay, so here is my million dollar question. Rosenbladt says that you don’t need to go to a church that teaches 40 days of purpose, or best life now. But probably the question TVdude has re “meat” etc is this. Although we believe in the centrality of the cross, and that it is purely through grace we are saved – absolutely nothing we have or could have done, and that this is our message etc etc, does that mean that there is NOTHING else to talk about?

    Paul talked about rejoicing in the Lord always. He talked about thinking on things that are good, just, lovely, etc.( some might call that positive thinking!) In fact he talked about LOTS of things to do with our everyday lives. Was that wrong? And if Paul who preached Christ and Him crucified, and who had a hold on the truths of Christ and his sacrifice AT LEAST as well as Calvin, Luther or Rosenbladt could talk about rejoicing, exhorting us to pray, praise, encourage one another, hold fast to hope etc. why can’t a modern Charismatic mega church pastor do the same thing in a culturally relevant way.

    I don’t think an Osteen or Pringle is saying that you need to get rich to get to heaven, or that being positive is the way of salvation. But, once we know that we are evil sinners, but have been saved by grace, teaching on how to have a super successful family is not bad in my eyes. Paul gave instruction on such. Ethics, morals, living in such a way as to improve yourself, your relationships etc, is okay -and a good thing. I teach my kids to choose good, what to avoid, etc. And even though the Christians in the NT churches were born again, they obviously needed a lot of instruction too, otherwise what were the epistles about?

    Btw re prosperity, one thing that Wesley taught was that we should earn as much as we can, save as much as we can, and give as much as we can. (At least that’s what someone told me he said). He, of course was not reformed. And as an aside, many people think that the prosperity of Europe was influenced greatly by reformed thinking – think Protestant work ethic. So in my heart I am all for the prosperity of my friends, family, nation – but I stand with you in our dismay at the silly and manipulative offering tactics.

    I wouldn’t call prosperity doctrine “meat” TVdude, but if what you are simply saying is that once we are Christians that there is room for sermons about things other than the total depravity of man, and grace, then I agree. I think Presbyterians and Lutherans preach on a wide variety of topics too.

    Time for bed.

  151. Flyswat – I totally agree with you BUT…

    you might have earned “a degree” but there is one you lack – thats the “third degree” which is the one that the plurality of elders (not board members) in your congregation forgot to subject you to before they unleashed you upon the flock

  152. Furhtermore Sheepsbrains & TVbiscuits remeber:

    “Any thought you might have had that because you’re a pastor you might get some cheap points because people here would be so impressed with that….I hope that thought has been lost.

    Lose the “apostolic mantle” for a nanosecond and remember your are dealing with people outside your little empires where your sacred cows may be slaughtered and you may be called to give an απολογία

  153. Churchman

    “Okay, so here is my million dollar question. Rosenbladt says that you don’t need to go to a church that teaches 40 days of purpose, or best life now. But probably the question TVdude has re “meat” etc is this. Although we believe in the centrality of the cross, and that it is purely through grace we are saved – absolutely nothing we have or could have done, and that this is our message etc etc, does that mean that there is NOTHING else to talk about?”

    Firstly – TVdoodle needs to shut up and let the adults talk for a bit – he clearly wants to monologue as if he were pontificating behind his pulpit (or his stool with or without a high table thingy…- whatever…)

    Ok (breath)…..in short:

    If you are listening to the lecture “the Gospel for Those Broken by the Church” Rosenbladt is LECTURING to students and others about the distinction between law and gospel – a subject that you will not hear expounded from the said pair of clowns because they are too enamoured with the smells and bells which are required (in their theology) to convince heathans that God is worth at least a “30 day trial or you can return the unused portion” – because the preaching of the cruddy old biblical and historic Gospel cannot save people who have access to modern day technology like iphones….

    Rosenbladt is LECTURING to students who are going into ministry, the necessity of the distinction between the doctrines of Law, which demands obedience to God’s ethical will, and Gospel, which promises the forgiveness of sins in light of the person and work of Jesus Christ – which is quite neccesary in light of the former because the former requires PERFECT OBEDIENCE and given that God does not grade our performance on a curve – he has therefore graciously provided a means by which we can be forgiven as if we had never stuffed up – that is good news isnt it?

    BUT – He is doing this so that pastors dont make agnostics out of people 5 minutes after they have walked the aisle, sung 35 verses of “just as I am” and given their hearts to Jesus, said “what next, surely there is something else to talk about”, who then find that they have not been vested with super powers to “take the city for Jesus” or to live their best life now find out that Justification is an instantaneous forensic and legal declaration of righteousness and sanctification is a quite separate process that God will develop in the the little child he has saved until he/she dies or until HE comes again

    Now because he is LECTURING and NOT PREACHING, that does not mean that does not mean that the work of preaching excludes exhortation to holy living and expalining the rich wisdom literature in the scriptures and that the “application” section in the sermon ought not be preached – it just means that the “application” section needs to be CAREFULLY preached so that the law does not do what it is designed to do and KILL YOU…..

  154. @tvdude – just pretend I’m a new covert. If I have cancer and you pray for my healing, if I don’t recover and die, whose fault is that? Your lack of faith, my lack of faith or God’s sovereign will and decree for my length of days? Is it worth drawing on real people in the OT/NT who didn’t get healed or took a little wine perhaps?

    I will allows pray for healing, for any situation, sometimes more than once, mostly more than once, sometimes over an extended period of time.

    I know the Lord loves me, cares for me and answers my prayers and sometimes He just says no. The glory He receives from that response may be held in eternity, it may be revealed even sooner, I’m content to rest in that security.

  155. @ Mosco – perhaps I should post a sermon by Pastor Gervaise Nicholas Edward Charmley or twin spin sermons by Bryan Wolfmueller,(love those guys) just to rock Fly’s boat because we are just soooo boring.

    The correct way to handle law and gospel is boring? 🙂

  156. “Scripture interprets scripture” – this statement is the most dangerous statement of the whole discussion. Writings do not interpret themselves. It requires an active intelligence to interpret writings, which ascribes meanings to them based on cultural and language norms and ultimately based on theological concepts.

    To say that scripture somehow interprets itself causes one to think there is a correct interpretation (the scriptural one) and that only you have it. Everyone else has some non-scriptural interpretation based on their own predjudices or something.

  157. Well if you don’t like the idea of scripture interpreting which is really the best way – how about settling for just “context, context, context.”?

  158. “For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.” (Exodus 20:11)

    “Today’s big idea: how does Scripture interpret Scripture?

    Today, we will look at our text less in relation to what it is saying and more in relation to what it is actually referring to. All through Scripture, we see Scripture quoting Scripture. In the New Testament, the prophets are quoted numerous times, showing the truth of God’s authority over history as it applied to the life and works of Christ. Jesus also quoted Scripture in an amazing show of the Word (John 1:1–5) quoting the Word. Not only this, but we often are able to find a clear understanding of a text and historical context by looking at different accounts of Scripture. We get a thorough understanding of the life of David by looking at the accounts of his life from the books of Samuel, Kings and Chronicles, as well as many Psalms.

    Scripture also helps us to understand the very narrative of Scripture. Take for example our verse today. Many people consider the book of Genesis to be poetic in genre or allegory in nature. But this is not how Scripture itself interprets the book of Genesis. In Exodus 20:11 God is giving the commandment to rest on the seventh day (the last day of the week). In doing so, He refers to how He originally created. God made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them in six days and rested on the seventh. This set the platform for the six-day work week with one day of Sabbath rest for Israel. If the account of Genesis was allegory and the days of creation were simply a literary device to indicate long periods of time, there would be no historical significance to the command God gave Israel for Sabbath rest. Only when Genesis is taken as a historical narrative—giving us a correct account of creation—can this command in Exodus to Israel make any sense. Scripture interprets Scripture.

    The text of Scripture must be interpreted by taking into account its literary forms and devices—and in understanding these forms, Scripture is still our guide. The inerrancy and infallibility of Scripture is so profound that by studying it carefully, we can not understand only that we are reading truth, but learn how to know truth. This takes careful study and application, but it does not require a Bible college degree. Scripture itself is our best theology professor in helping us understand and apply Scripture.

    Today’s big idea: if you want to understand Scripture, read it . . . carefully.” – Answers in Genesis

  159. TVD: “Really? The trinity is the essential doctrine of Christianity? Laying aside the fact that the word trinity isn’t even mentioned in the bible, whether God is one being in three manifestations or is three separate beings doesn’t change the fact that we are only saved through our belief, faith and relationship with Jesus. This is the essential doctrine of Christianity. I mean, come on, this is getting so ridiculous!”

    Try saying that to TD Jakes or a modalist. They would laugh at you TVDude. To BE saved you must be baptised in the name of Jesus NOT the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. You MUST speak in tongues and you MUST live out the standards of ‘holiness’ laid out by the pastor of your church to maintain or keep your salvation.

  160. @specks, “the challenge from mn was to present ANY teaching not about tithing, prosperity or finances from these preachers. As I said earlier, it appears that you are so desperate to find fault with anything that doesn’t line up with your own narrow definition of the gospel that you have given up any semblance of reason.”

    I know C3 knows the gospel. But they often preach anything but the gospel. This is tragedy. Since I’ve labeled C3 a gnostic cult, in some way I am trying to demonstrate that is exactly what they are by what they teach.

    And in terms of me having a ‘narrow definition of the gospel’, I can safely say that I am not one to add to the gospel any works, pagan philosophies, demonic doctrines or faulty teachings. Since you are continually defending such deceptive men- continually- I have to wonder what gospel you preach to your own congregation.

    It looks like C3 did it’s job on you while you were there.

    “I have presented just a few messages as proof, yet, not satisfied with that, you throw around wildly over-generalized comments to try and prove that you are right and I am wrong. Remember, I sat under PP’s teaching for 16 years, and I still listen and watch the TV show, and, yes, he occasionally talks about these subjects, but they are not exclusively on these types of subjects. Your comments are therefore wrong.”

    It’s either I’m wrong or your too blind to read my comments.

    https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/09/17/lustful-leadership-laws-kong-hee-style/#comment-13801

    https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/09/17/lustful-leadership-laws-kong-hee-style/#comment-13809

    https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/09/17/lustful-leadership-laws-kong-hee-style/#comment-13757

    You are unbelievable!

  161. TVDude: “You say that people such as PP, Houston, Jakes and the like are wrong because they teach things you don’t agree with. Those are your opinions and it is those opinions, and your own interpretation of scripture to support your hypotheses, that I choose to not be swayed by.”

    Their teachings OPPOSE the simple and saving message of Jesus Christ. Read what I quoted Kong Hee in saying:

    “So God is saying this [On Deut 4:4]: ‘THE LAWS OF GOD ARE SO INCREDIBLE, SO COMPLETE, so well thought out, IF YOU AS A PEOPLE WILL FOLLOW THEM, then the WORLD IS GONNA GET ENVIOUS OF YOU. YOU will be a lender and not a borrower. In other words, YOU ARE GOING TO BE SUCCESSFUL, YOU are going to be the head and not the tail, YOU are going to be wealthy and prosperous…” – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 1, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fkldfgf6cDs: (04:06), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

    Kong Hee teaches C3 to follow the law, not the Spirit. Then it’s all about everyone prospering. It’s YOU, YOU, YOU! (Not Him, Him, HIM!)

    Does he fall into the criteria as a heretic or false apostle/teacher in the NT?

    Twists scripture: YES
    Flatters: YES
    Puts people under Law instead of Grace: YES
    Twists Paul’s words: YES
    Lies: YES (plagiarist)
    Promises wealth: YES
    Teaches another gospel: YES (Prosperity Gospel)

    I am sure there are others. If Kong Hee ticks all the bosses but people like Pringle ENDORSE this man and his teachings, then Pringle must be examined:

    Twists scripture: YES
    Flatters: YES
    Puts people under Law instead of Grace: YES
    Twists Paul’s words: YES
    Lies: YES
    Promises wealth: YES
    Teaches another gospel: YES (Prosperity Gospel)

    We are to not be in fellowship with such men who exchange the truth and power of God for a lie. So why keep defending them TVDude? This was clearly stated by Kong Hee above as well:

    “This is the MISSION OF THE CHURCH: WE WANT TO GIVE THE WORLD A TASTE OF THIS COLOURFUL, PROGRESSIVE, CREATIVE GOD and let them know what He has intended for mankind from the very beginning… Adam would continue to be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth and subdue it UNTIL he had total dominion of the whole world, for the glory of God.
    But when we begin to live in this [refers to blackboard] level of shallow, sheltered Christianity, [ridicules in pathetic voice], “OH SAVE ME JESUS! PROVIDE FOR ME JESUS! HEAL ME JESUS! DELIVER ME! OH JESUS! HELP ME! HELP ME! HELP ME!” You know- LOW LEVEL CHRISTIANITY, you become passive, constantly at the mercy of situation, of the economics condition, of the problems and of people.
    Your pastor, DOCTOR PHIL PRINGLE AND PEOPLE LIKE ME, WE ARE TRYING TO CHANGE THAT IN OUR GENERATION. We want to RAISE UP A NEW GENERATION [refers to board] OF PEOPLE. INSTEAD OF SAYING, “SAVE ME JESUS!”, WE ARE SAYING, “TOUCH ME JESUS! FILL ME JESUS! GIVE ME A VISIONS AND DREAM JESUS! LET ME HAVE YOUR CREATIVITY TO GO THERE AND BE AN OVERCOMER, PROBLEM SOLVER…”
    – Kong Hee, Pastor Kong Hee @ C3 College Opening Feb 2009 Part 4, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XlCRLlLcLSE: (00:00-1:20), C3 Oxford Falls, C3 College Lecture, 19/01/09

    THIS should be the church’s mission: 2Corinthians 5:14-21.
    Not Kong Hee’s watered down mamby-pamby, wanna-feel-worth-something-to-me, watered-down nonsense! With the above quote, Kong Hee is openly stating him and Pringle are CHANGING how people should be perceiving God. Not as a God who saves but a God who can spoil his children with material filth!

    I’m pretty sure many of us have judged them correctly against God’s word. I am not someone to go, “They’ve said this little bit wrong! They MUST be a heretic!”

    No. I let it slide, but don’t necessarily forget it. I let it slide again… and again… and… again until I can’t let the issue go and look into it a bit more. If this is just ignorance it needs to be addressed. Unfortunately these types of men are not approachable, (which makes them go further against scripture).

    I do not hate Pringle. I do not hate or hold any bitterness towards such men TVDude. They can infuriate me, but that is not bitterness.

    I do hate what they are doing in God’s name and what they are doing TO the body of Christ. It is this I have issue with. I would have no problem sitting down with them and having a normal conversation with them and do not wish any bad fortune to fall upon them. This is something God challenged me with last year. I felt him challenge me on my love for them. Because I realized that “love does not rejoice in evil”, I was happy to know that I do not hold any bitterness towards them, just passionate anger towards people they destroy. An anger that is not hate but anger that wishes to see goodness surpass foul and ignorant ‘pastoral’ conduct.

    THE FACT that Kong Hee has hit headlines in his own country for being a plagiarist should be serious alarm bells. (Or did you turn yours off?) The FACT that when I found that Kong Hee was speaking at C3’s Presence Conference (in April)should also have set off alarm bells. I don’t know what I typed into google, but I hit CheatGrace’s blog first up exposing Kong Hee has lying, thieving plagiarist.

    http://theonlinecitizen.com/2010/05/did-kong-hee-plagiarise/

    TVDude: “True RP, and I have experienced this from my first post on signposts. My views have been dismissed and ridiculed and I have been called names and abused purely because I am a pastor and am attempting to offer an alternate view.”

    I never dismissed your views. You had problems with blah-blah and some others. But I was keen to get you involved with discussions here on Signposts02.

    TVDude: “You are right there RP. My apologies. From now on when I say “all of you” I am referring to specks, blah-blah, mn, Mosco and teddy just to clarify!”

    TVDude: “You so confidently ascribe eternal damnation to people like PP, TD Jakes et al based upon your own interpretations of certain scriptures and doctrines, so I think the expression “pot calling the kettle black” applies here.”

    I haven’t called you names TVD. So don’t ‘generalize’ me either.
    I go to the Word, just like you do and read passages like Gal 1:8 “But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned!”

    So if I’m getting lumped into your generalizations because I’m “pot calling the kettle black”, make sure you throw the Apostle Paul into your ‘generalisation’ too. It is clear you defend those he speaks against and warns the church from. You on the other hand, like to defend them.

    TVDude: “Sure, the prosperity message may be like a lump in your throat, but there is certainly enough said about the subject in God’s Word to warrant calling it “meat”, even if it is unpalatable to you.”

    Since when did the gospel ‘profit’ anyone in the early church? Paul was persecuted for it. The early church was tortured, killed and persecuted for it. Now a gospel of ‘prosperity’ comes along with the message ‘God wants you blessed’, selecting specific scriptures that contradict the life and message our early brethren live. This convenient, ear-tickling gospel has done a great job introducing many indoctrinating philosophies and cult-like mentalities where people are afraid to question authority, not think outside the church box, be bound by anti-gospel doctrines (like the tithe and serving in God’s house), thus causing major rifts among families and friends.

    This is EXACTLY the people Jesus was talking to, who turned Gods word into convenient traditions for themselves, prayed on loudly street corners (the equivalent of a stage today), parade in front of people, tell them things they want to hear, who are destroying families.

    Matt 7:15-20, Mark 7:6-13, Mark 12:38-44, Matthew 23, Matthew 6:5, Luke 18:11-13, Matthew 24:4-5, Matthew 24:11, Mark 13:22, Acts 20:29-32, Revelations 2:2-3

    Please read these scriptures! Can you at least see what I am seeing or at least saying?

    Heed the words of Paul!
    2 Corinthians 11:12-15, Galatians 1:6-12, 1 Timothy 6:8-10, Hebrews 13:5, Titus 1:10-11, 1 Timothy 4:1-2, Romans 16:17-18, 2 Timothy 4:3-4, Philippians 3:18-19, Colossians 2:8, Colossians 2:18

    Heed the words of Peter!
    2 Peter 2:1-3, 2 Peter 2:18

    And the words of John!
    2 John 1:10-11

    And James!
    Jude 1:1-17

    Please go through these scriptures TVDude. Are we reading the same bible?

    I don’t judge people for doing petty things, nor do I judge them under the Laws of God, I judge them under the Rule of The Spirit – The Final Authoritative and Living Word which is Christ. To twist the Living Gospel is to twist the Word and Power of God. I will repent to God if I EVER found I did such a thing. But these men who are twisting the Word and Power of God and exchanging the Truth of God for a lie is absolutely blasphemous. So why defend them TVD?

  162. I agree with churchman’s comments.

    I also am not a Calvinist. Still think they have good to contribute though. I’m probably more into Wesley – Heretic is.

    As for the Jensen brothers – they have put many of us off the Sydney Anglican church. In fact, their attitudes were one contributing factor in me finding Pentecostalism 20 years ago. They come across to me as arrogant and intellectually elitist.

    Still, it is not surprising that when exiting an environment where teaching of real depth is hard to come by, that people will gravitate to an alternative that offers the major thing that was missing before. Particularly if it is also missing the emphasis on vision casting and perpetual fund raising at a highly sacrificial level.

    Having exited both Sydney Anglican and C3, I am appreciating the good things that both of those contributed to my walk, but heading back to neither one. I guess denominational names are useful because you can look up what you will find there. Sometimes though, they just seem like clubs of people who think the same way, and are sure their particular way is right. However… there are churches out there – there must be – which are a little less polarising, and a little more open to the body as a whole. Mostly I suspect it will come down to the minister in charge, and the local culture.

  163. I should also just second that I cannot remember MN ever condemning anyone to hell. Likewise, I do not. It’s not my job.

    We may condemn teaching or practices from time to time, but only God knows the path of the teachers etc.

  164. Nor have I ever condemned anyone to hell. I just make slamming comments against those that preach dangerous doctrines.

  165. good for you to watch as well TVDude in case you found looking through the above scriptures ‘boring’:

    There were good scriptures revealed in there that I didn’t even consider worth considering!

  166. I go to a church that HAPPENS to be Anglican – it’s where we found the gospel preached, God’s Word honoured, peole encouraged to grow in grace with love for one another, a place where generousity is encouraged through the use of the gift God has imparted in our lives , whether it be serving, adminstration, children’s ministry, prayer groups etc.

    By the way, if it’s a club, the joining fee is free, the membership gives eternal life.

  167. All organised churches are like clubs. You can have good ones and bad ones. As I said, Teddy, it depends on the minister in charge. But Teddy, you do sound so certain that your current theology is right, or that those you now listen to are right. They also sound so convinced they are right, and are so disparaging at times towards others. And to me, that is associated with the ‘rightness’ that I knew in the Anglican church I was a part of, and Anglican groups at uni that I knew, and not so dissimilar from the ‘rightness’ that Phil Pringle portrays. Not trying to have a go at you or your church. You’ve found a good community and that’s a good thing.

  168. teddy “By the way, if it’s a club, the joining fee is free, the membership gives eternal life.”

    I think you have fallen for the lies teddy. Being a member of a particular church institution is not free and does not bestow eternal life. Knowing God does that.

    If you have eternal life you are in the church (and there is a cost for that too). But the club you attend does not affect that.

  169. I was being the church, didn’t you read my comment? We happen to go to a church that’s Anglican. It could have been Baptist, Presbyterian or a home group. Messages preached on Sunday are simple, straightforward, God honouring , basically no c..p, pardon the expression. And as you well know, I’ve learned to recognize whether something is c..p or not after 22 years.

    Gathering together is not harmful or has something changed in the last 2000 years? We are blessed to have that freedom however we do it, unlike some Christians around the world.

    Time you guys started reading comments more clearly, and look at the humour behind it and the word “if”.

  170. @ heretic – I’m curious and please forgive me if I’m being presumptuous. Do you ascribe to the “Lifestream” school of thought? The reason I ask is that, if so, doesn’t that put you in the same “club” category you place me in?

  171. @ RP – Yes I’m convinced that what I follow now is biblical, there’s cetainly no flakiness attached to being reformed, I’m not a hyper-calvinist. Just not “tossed by every wind of doctrine”.

    Love listening to teaching about the sovereign grace of God, men who don’t play fast and loose with God’s Word. Love the good, bad and ugly sermon reviews with Chris Rosebrough.

    To sum up I guess that could puts me in the Lutheran “club”, the Southern Baptist “club”, the Reformed Baptist “club”, the Anglican “club”, the universal catholic (small c) church “club”, depending who I listen to.

    Glad there’s no club fees to pay, grace is still free, isn’t it? 😉

  172. And I’m sitting in the corner sucking my thumb and sulking cause everybody’s picking on me! 😦 Well, at least two people are – where’s Mosco when you need him/her?

  173. Teddy, One day explain to me the difference between Reformed and hyper calvinism. (That’s a genuine request). I understand that William Carey was a Calvinist who had to battle with “hyper calvinists” who opposed his desire for missions.

    rp, Am I ignorant for not knowing who the Jensen brothers are?

    I know what you mean by “disparaging to others”. Hard to explain, but maybe a little more warmth would go a long way with some reformed people.

    sp, I liked that youtube prosperity video.

    I was thinking about you all today, and the “passion” of the debate here. It’s interesting living in a pagan country. Missionaries of all different persuasions seem to be able to get on with each other better and show more respect to each other as individuals. Makes it a lot easier to feel like you’re all on the same team when its a handful of people who believe in Jesus (whether mega, small, arminian or calvinist) as opposed to the vast majority who have never been to a church.

    There are comments here like “if you understood God” and assertions doubting people’s relationship to God, but if you go out on the mission field you quickly realize that there are people who have left their own cultures, languages and easy lifestyles who belong to all different denominations. It’s hard to see people like that as the enemy. And you become very reluctant to use words like heretic or any other kind of insult.

    So … maybe some of you could do with a year overseas…?

    There’s my plug for missions for the day! It’s not as outrageous an idea as what you might think. Not sure what that had to do with Kong but still …

  174. Missions is hard work. It is something I’ve considered doing. I’ve considered South America or South East Asia. Specifically South East Asia.

  175. At the same time in regards to missions, some of the theological missionary’s or revolutionary’s on field were also very fiery on good solid theology.

    They took no BS from false teachings or mediocre theologians. Very fire and brimstone if you ask me.

  176. There are many who hold to reformed thinking who are not cessationists – I’m one of them, just don’t believe what’s operating in most pente churches is the real deal i.e. tongues, visions etc.

    Interesting to see how easy these can be counterfeited – “lying signs and wonders” are part and parcel of the last days. This is why we have the Patricia King’s and Todd Bentley’s of the world becoming so popular, even when they cross the line into non-biblical flakiness.

  177. @teddy

    “just don’t believe what’s operating in most pente churches is the real deal i.e. tongues, visions etc.”

    So what you’re saying is that whenever I and everyone in my church speak in tongues, prophecy, see visions etc, we are operating under “lying signs” or under a counterfeit spirit? How do you know that most people in pente churches are “faking it”? Have you asked them? Is it just an observation? Or are you able to spiritually discern whether someone is “faking it”? Wait a minute, isn’t discernment a spiritual gift? How do we know you’re not faking it?

    You are allowing your own personal experiences over-rule the Word of God teddy. Just because you don’t experience these kinds of Holy Spirit manifestations, or you’ve seen a few people “fake it”, doesn’t mean it isn’t real and most people in pente churches fake it.

  178. Been there , done that. I’m an ordained ex-C3 lay pastor. Passed all tests. Had all the “gifts”. Could babble with the best of them and “interpret” as my flesh got in the way.

    As I said I’m not a cessationist, I do believe the gifts are available to the church as God so decrees. Not all speak in tongues, even Paul says that. Tongues are given as a sign to the unbelieving Jew, by the way, as prophesied in the OT.

    When we stop allowing “experience” to determine our theology and allow the Word to determine whether that “experience” is real or not then the church will be a lot healthier.

    I would suggest, like me, you’ve allowed experience to determine your theology. Four and five years ago, you and I would have been on the same side, passionately fighting for OUR right to determine God’s gifts and distribution of same.

    Getting over the C3 “brainwashing” took a few years to filter out via the Word and it’s a much healthier spiritual world to live in.

  179. TVdude is here again defending the indefensible.

    Rattling off incomprehensible babble and gobbler-gook hardly amounts to the biblical definition of “tongues” which were ALWAYS as Teddy mentioned to be a sign to the UNBELIEVER and were ALWAYS to be accompanied by an interpretation.

    And please, don’t quote me the “tongues of angels” heresy – THERE IS NO SUCH THING!
    That is Paul using a figure of speech like ‘raining cats and dogs’ or ‘harder than a rock’

    Yes, I do believe you have a ‘lying spirit’ in your mouth and your heart that you need to repent of but I don’t believe you will. You relish your false-doctrines way too much.

    Best

  180. We have a very dear friend (young man) who claimed to have the gift of healing. He was “used” by C3 etc to promote that “gift. Whenever we met socially, he would always talk about all the healings he saw, all the words of knowledge he had, all the amazing “visions/dreams” etc etc. Can you see where I’m going with this? Two places.

    1. Where was Christ? he never spoke of Christ, only himself as if he was the “anointed” one. He believed his own publicity. he would declare people healed and then judge them as if it is was their fault they hadn’t received it! Enough said, though there’s more.

    2. Where does it say in the bible that there’s a gift of healing? It doesn’t. It’s gifts of healing. God’s gift of healing to individuals. He determines the healing in His will and timing and sometimes just takes us home.

    “Even Paul, who healed many, was unable to heal Epaphroditis” (Philippians 2:25-30). Scripturally, it appears that only Jesus was able to heal every time.

    “James exhorts us to call on gifts of healing pray for the sick and infirm. We must pray expectantly and with faith, but we must not pray presumptuously and arrogantly. God can use us to perform miraculous healings, but this will only happen according to His will and timing, not ours. I have heard of cancer that goes into remission subsequent to prayers for healing. I have experienced healing from less serious maladies after having hands laid on me and prayers offered for my healing. Even medical journals are recognizing that miraculous healings do occur among people of faith. Gifts of healing present us with the awesome opportunity to share in the rich healing mercies of our Lord. Be faithful in exercising these gifts, and know that God’s purposes will be done.” Contender Ministries.

    We can all attest to God’s miraculous/providential hand touching our lives, the very air we breathe – I know I can.

  181. Hi TVDude. There is an obvious problem with your position here.
    You stated very clearly that you have a policy of not criticizing Pastors publicly. If you will never do that, but feel free to criticize the comments and spiritual condition of posters here, then you end up as nothing but a PR man or spokesman for the people who many on here feel have a dangerous influence on people.

    So, I can’t see that there is ever going to be much joy for you, or for the others who you will by necessity have to attack.

    On the one hand, I really do understand the concept of not criticizing Pastors. White House spokesmen will always defend the President’s words and actions. Officers won’t go on record criticizing other officers etc. But, that very position doesn’t always have good results. Look over history.

  182. “You are allowing your own personal experiences over-rule the Word of God teddy”

    That is an absolute clanger coming from a gnostic, who does espouses that nature of the Triune God is a non-essential doctrine for salvation!

  183. I speak in tongues. I don’t believe it keeps me saved. I speak in private. Isn’t that what it is for? Between me and God and no one else?

  184. Private prayer language isn’t in the bible – I thought it was, I thought what I was doing was real – I don’t do it any more but my prayer life hasn’t changed. English is my prayer tongue.

  185. @ Specks – it rocks your boat when all the different things we are taught as “fact” have no basis in scripture. It sure rocked mine! Here’s some insight into the issue…..

    “Praying in tongues is a personal prayer language between a believer and God (1 Corinthians 13:1) that a believer uses to edify himself (1 Corinthians 14:4). This interpretation is unbiblical for the following reasons: 1) How could praying in tongues be a private prayer language if it is to be interpreted (1 Corinthians 14:13-17)? 2) How could praying in tongues be for self-edification when Scripture says that the spiritual gifts are for the edification of the church, not the self (1 Corinthians 12:7). 3) How can praying in tongues be a private prayer language if the gift of tongues is a “sign to unbelievers” (1 Corinthians 14:22)? 4) The Bible makes it clear that not everyone possesses the gift of tongues (1 Corinthians 12:11, 28-30). How could tongues be a gift for self-edification if not every believer can possess it? Do we not all need to be edified?

    Some understand praying in tongues to be a “secret code language” that prevents Satan and his demons from understanding our prayers and thereby gaining an advantage over us. This interpretation is unbiblical for the following reasons: 1) The New Testament consistently describes tongues as a human language. It is unlikely that Satan and his demons are unable to understand human languages. 2) The Bible records countless believers praying in their own language, out loud, with no concern of Satan intercepting the prayer. Even if Satan and/or his demons hear and understand the prayers we pray, they have absolutely no power to prevent God from answering the prayers according to His will. We know that God hears our prayers, and that fact makes it irrelevant whether Satan and his demons hear and understand our prayers.

    What do we say, then, about the many Christians who have experienced praying in tongues and find it to be very personally edifying? First, we must base our faith and practice on Scripture, not experience. We must view our experiences in light of Scripture, not interpret Scripture in light of our experiences. Second, many of the cults and world religions also report occurrences of speaking in tongues/praying in tongues. Obviously the Holy Spirit is not gifting these unbelieving individuals. So, it seems that the demons are able to counterfeit the gift of speaking in tongues. This should cause us to compare even more carefully our experiences with Scripture. Third, studies have shown how speaking/praying in tongues can be a learned behavior. Through hearing and observing others speak in tongues, a person can learn the procedure, even subconsciously. This is the most likely explanation for the vast majority of instances of speaking/praying in tongues among Christians. Fourth, the feeling of “self-edification” is natural. The human body produces adrenaline and endorphins when it experiences something new, exciting, emotional, and/or disconnected from rational thought.

    Praying in tongues is most definitely an issue on which Christians can respectfully and lovingly agree to disagree. Praying in tongues is not what determines salvation. Praying in tongues is not what separates a mature Christian from an immature Christian. Whether or not there is such a thing as praying in tongues as a personal prayer language is not a fundamental of the Christian faith. So, while we believe the biblical interpretation of praying in tongues leads away from the idea of a private prayer language for personal edification, we also recognize that many who practice such are our brothers and sisters in Christ and are worthy of our love and respect.”

  186. My wife speaks in tongues and has had virtually no exposure to charo’s in full flight.

    I don’t think it is an issue of the devil can’t understand, bu rather expressing the inexpressible.

    I would have to agree with most of Teddy’s quote, but there are a couple of holes in it.

    I note the last line in it which I think is a sensible position on it.

    Have never been comfortable with the public pente free for all without interpretation which as the above quote points out scripture does not on balance support.

    It doesn’t say don’t do this, but rather says this is what you should do….I don’t understand why the injunction is basically ignored on a grand scale.

  187. @ mn – I did it for 22 years. How does your wife use the gift in relation to scripture? Does someone interpret or are you saying it’s private prayer language?

    It”s interesting how Romans 8:26 is used as a validation for private tongues yet the groaning are unuttered!

    What are the holes in the article?

  188. I didn’t stop “speaking in tongues/babble” because I started going to an Anglican church- it all stopped even before we left C3. Our last year there was tough, when those scales started dropping off. The yelling, the head shaking, the jerking and flailing etc throughout the church still troubles me to this day, the crazy deception of it all.

    Our minister would allow tongues with interpretation if it happened, that’s how he views the impartation of gifts through the body, and no, it hasn’t happened.

  189. 1 Cor 14 seems to me to imply that there is a private prayer language. “For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God”.

    It then goes on to say that in the church there should be interpretation. “I thank God that I speak in tongues more than all of you. But in the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue.”

    Paul seems to be saying that he uses the private prayer language at home, but would rather not in church.

  190. I totally agree with teddy’s said

    “Praying in tongues is most definitely an issue on which Christians can respectfully and lovingly agree to disagree.”

    But what about the issue that has been raised “is the Trinity an essential Chrisitan doctrine” I think that many Christians would associate Jehova’s Witnesses and Mormons as non-chistian cults without a second thought (and they would be right), but if you want to be consistent – if what TVdude is correct then not only is nearly 2000 years of Church history is wrong, but thse people have been wrongly excluded from the Christian community on the basis of a non-essential doctrine?

  191. @ wazza2 – I’m sorry, didn’t mean to seem rude. These topics force me to really go hard at it. I guess it’s the years of overlooking and just accepting what was dished out at C3, I’m still so sensitive that I check the messages at our new church, not a bad thing to do. The minister encourages it anyway!

  192. I’ve come to conclude that speaking in babble seems to be unbiblical. In fact, my head is convinced – but my heart isn’t. It’s rather odd.

    I have randomly found myself singing in tongues or praying frustratingly in tongues towards God without even realising it. I then wondered if I had another spirit.

    I must admit, I’m speaking less and less in tongues. But I find when I do, I do sense Him. Just like I do when I think how wonderful God is. If it’s false, I’m finding it hard to let go of. I read a fantastic article convincing me that ‘tongues’ is not biblical and I believed it.

  193. I think the Trinity is an essential doctrine. But as I have said before, the average Christian would be left with his or head spinning if they read the debates on it.

    The latest development of course is that even important doctrines like this are not considered as weighty as they used to. And as for the Mormons, well, Joel Osteen publicly said that he assumes they are Christians. In the US more evangelicals are becoming reluctant to publicly state that Mormons are not Christians. Esp with the popularity of figures like Glenn Beck and the the importance of Mormons to conservative politics.

  194. Mosco

    what TVD originally said was:

    “laying aside the fact that the word trinity isn’t even mentioned in the bible, whether God is one being in three manifestations or is three separate beings doesn’t change the fact that we are only saved through our belief, faith and relationship with Jesus. This is the essential doctrine of Christianity. I mean, come on, this is getting so ridiculous!”

    Whether he was actually discounting the Trinity or not I don’t know. I think he was more so pointing to faith in Christ as the path to salvation and believing in his finished work for us.

    I think the point you raise is a fair one, but I think the points of difference between Mormons, JWs and mainstream Christianity is different again – a little thing called the divinity of Christ for one.

    I would also cut TVD a little slack in the sense that I don’t think any of us have an in-depth understanding of how the Trinity hangs together – it is a mystery. We can hazard some reasonable guesstimations sure.

    Look I believe in Father, Son and Holy Spirit each being individual and yet one God. I challenge anyone to come up with a definitive explanation. It just one of the many things we accept but can’t explain too well.

  195. “The yelling, the head shaking, the jerking and flailing etc throughout the church still troubles me to this day, the crazy deception of it all.”

    Can anyone who has done the head shaking thing explain it to me? Do people just do it as a spiritual exercise or do they genuinely feel like they can’t control it?

  196. @churchman

    “Can anyone who has done the head shaking thing explain it to me? Do people just do it as a spiritual exercise or do they genuinely feel like they can’t control it?”

    It happens to me sometimes, but I cannot explain it to you. The closest I can get to describe it is that it’s an involuntary action, although I can stop it from happening if I really want to. It happens to me sometimes when I have spent a fair amount of time worshiping or soaking in God’s presence. It doesn’t happen all of the time though. I mainly get a slight jump/jerking thing, especially when I am praying for people. I’ve seen some people try to discredit it by calling it a Kundalini spirit, but what they don’t realise is that the devil is a counterfeiter and will always try and draw people away from the real manifestations and onto himself.

  197. I have to jump in there I’m afraid.

    I can remain silent no longer. The idea that just because the Devil is a counterfeiter means that anything non-christian religions do means that Christians can do too, simply because the Devil is counterfeiting something that would otherwise be legitimate is nonsense.

    So much of what does happen is totally off. If what happens does not demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit, and I mean all flavours of it, then there is a problem … isn’t there?

    If what happens does not show Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and SELF-CONTROL we are completely sunk.

    On another note, TD Jakes is such a oneness pentecostal he is in the same boat with JW’s and Mormons. But it’s no good twitting TVDude about that if those who do so want to contest the authorship of John’s Gospel. They are appealing to the 2nd and 3rd Century to prove TD Jakes a Heretic but then say it’s all hearsay when it comes to John’s Accepted Authorship of the Gospel ascribed to him. You simply have to be consistent.

    Well now that I’ve thumbed my nose at everyone I might as well go have a coffee. Billy no-mates now (sniff).

    Shalom.

  198. “I think the point you raise is a fair one, but I think the points of difference between Mormons, JWs and mainstream Christianity is different again – a little thing called the divinity of Christ for one.”
    Just to clarify

    Yes MN the point is a “fair one” (can you imagine my relief…)

    In the interests of assuring you that I have not overlooked “little things” (that really cannot be distinguished as if they were mutually exclusive and bore no relevance one to another ANYWAY!!)

    I invite you to now pretend I am a Mormon or a JW and educate me on how you to go about explaining the divinity of your Lord Jesus Christ without giving even fleeting reference to a couple of other “little thingies” referred to in scripture as “The Father” and the “Spirit” (I don’t say this for “shits and giggles” but because the reality is there is one eternal being of God – indivisible, infinite – this one being of God is shared by three co-equal, co-eternal persons, the Father, the Son, and the Spirit)

    Now – just a “little thing” to help you along the way – wikipedia the word “homooúsios” which the Nicene Creed found “a little thing called the divinity of Christ” in scripture as being homooúsios with God the Father (that is, they are of the “same substance” and are equally God)

  199. I thought I was quite clear.

    Stupid signs and wonders. Shaking, falling over, clucking like chickens, stripping off, laughing uncontrollably and so on … are so utterly pointless you have to wonder why the Lord wants us to look so ridiculous making animal noises and such-like.

    Regarding you (perhaps) and others who have said that the Authorship of John’s Gospel is in question because that is only a discredited church tradition need to be consistent, since Sabellianism was condemned as Heresy in 220AD. This is the reason for labelling TD Jakes a Sabellian or modalist or Oneness Pentecostal Heretic.

    You can’t rubbish my understanding about John’s Gospel by saying that only dates to the 3rd century cos they were wrong then, while saying the same people were right to condemn modalism.

    Get it?

    Maybe not.

    Anyway, if you undermine the Gospel of John you undermine THE GOSPEL. All the other stuff about prosperity etc fades into insignificance, because all of a sudden, we are presented with a different Jesus and a different Gospel. Do you get it now?

    What other parts of scripture do you want to rip out of the Bible? All the bits you don’t like?

    I suppose you will refuse to understand what I am getting at.

    But that’s OK. You said I was indoctrinated. How can you possibly “defend” the Gospel when you attack the authenticity of the Bible?

    You are inconsistent. I think other people on this blog will understand what I am getting at.

  200. Mosco I feel like you’re trying to turn this into a contest where you force me to tick off all your boxes.

    I’m not really into those games.

  201. Ok ease up Tiger – I dont disagree with you by any means – in fact I say amen to everything you just said (except for you slighlty schitzo rant at me for no apparent reason)

    well said – I just hope you dont know where I live!

  202. @MN – remember to never call anyone a heretic again either because by your own standards – they are only heretics to the extent that they are “forced to tick off all of your boxes”

    In that regard, I believe this one belongs to you:

    “I don’t go in for saying people are going to hell – even if they are heretics”

    aint the nexis between credibility and consistency a bugger!

  203. Nobody stopping anyone from doing it. Just be sure your experience isn’t the deciding factor in spite of what is said in the bible contextually. It helps to understand Greek too.:)

    “Some today believe that they have a special spiritual gift of praying to God in “tongues.” The problem with this belief is that the Bible does not teach any such gift. Those who claim to have this gift believe that in their prayer time the Holy Spirit takes over their voice and they begin to speak unintelligible words to God. To defend this practice they use Romans 8:26 and 1 Corinthians 14:2-3.

    Let’s discuss this error for a moment. It is clear in the New Testament that those who actually possessed the true spiritual gift of tongues during the Apostolic age of the church understood that which they were saying in the tongue. The tongue that they miraculously were able to speak in was an actual language (see Acts 2:6 and 1 Corinthians 14:10). Their message was evangelistic and directly from God as a sign to unbelievers. Paul said that he used the gift more than anyone. Why? Because he traveled to many different cultures and language groups spreading the Gospel. Paul, also, told the Corinthians that the gift was only to be used when one with the gift of interpretation could translate the tongue into the native language of the speakers.

    But today, the one who claims that he “prays in a tongue” will admit that he has no idea what he just said to God. That is why he uses Romans 8:26 and 1 Corinthians 14:2-3 as his Biblical support. Yet, neither of these texts supports a private prayer language. In fact, one specifically teaches against it.

    The 1 Corinthians text is clearly teaching that “private prayer language” is unprofitable and unadvised. Note that speaker is unaware of what he is saying, for Paul says that “no one understands” and that the “mind” is not edified. Take careful note of Paul’s conclusion of praying in tongues in verses 14 and 15. HE ADVISES AGAINST IT.

    Now concerning the Romans 8 text, it is in reference to all Christians, not just the ones with a gift of tongues. Contrary to the interpretation of most charismatics, the groanings of the Spirit are not utterances in unknown tongues, much less ecstatic gibberish that has no rational content. Furthermore, note that the “groanings” that are mentioned in that text are “unspoken” so nothing is said at all. The text is simply a reference to the on-going intercession of the Spirit on our behalf, even when we are unaware of it or unable to pray properly ourselves. It has nothing at all to do with a “private prayer language.”

    Robert Mounce explains: When our lack of faith undermines certainty in prayer, the Spirit himself intercedes on our behalf. So intense is his prayer that Paul described it as “groans that words cannot express.” The NEB makes the believer, not the Spirit, the one who groans (“through our inarticulate groans the Spirit himself is pleading for us”). This removes the somewhat difficult image of the Spirit groaning in prayer, but in view of Gethsemane (cf. esp. Luke 22:44) there is no reason to deny emotional/spiritual involvement in prayer to the third person of the Trinity. [Some who hold that στεναγμοῖς ἀλαλήτοις (“groans that words cannot express”) refers to the groaning of the believer also hold that Paul was referring to glossolalia, speaking in tongues (e.g., E. Käsemann, “The Cry for Liberty in the Worship of the Church,” in Perspectives on Paul [Philadelphia: Fortress, 1971]: 122–37), but that is highly unlikely. ἀλάλητος means “unspoken.” Stott holds that the groans are “unexpressed rather than inexpressible,” the “agonized longings for final redemption and the consummation of all things” (Romans, 245).] Here again we stand at the edge of mystery. It is better to acknowledge humbly our spiritual incapacity than to reduce the action of the Spirit to human terms.

    God understands what the Spirit desires even though it is inexpressible in human terms (v. 27). God is the one who has complete access to the heart. His knowledge is direct, not dependent upon one’s ability to articulate concerns. God is a searcher of hearts and knows the desires of the Spirit as the Spirit intercedes for us. He knows that the Spirit is interceding for saints in harmony with his will. No passage of Scripture provides greater encouragement for prayer. The Spirit comes to the aid of believers baffled by the perplexity of prayer and takes their concerns to God with an intensity far greater than we could ever imagine. Our groans (v. 23) become his (v. 26) as he intercedes on our behalf.”

    (Mounce, Robert H. Vol. 27, Romans; The New American Commentary, Page 186. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers

  204. “No doctrine of Scripture can be built on one verse only. Every scripture pertaining to the subject should be placed together so that the whole truth can be viewed in light of all the verses and not just one verse” Kevin J Conner (well known to most charismatic Christians)

  205. Mosco

    you quoted me as saying:

    “I don’t go in for saying people are going to hell – even if they are heretics”

    Which I followed up in a later post by saying:

    “I have used the word heretic occasionally.

    Whether used rightly or wrongly, I wouldn’t jump to the conclusion that equates to hell and damnation.
    I think we are all heretical to an extent…..”

    In other words we all have credibility problems, except some of us don’t realise it.

    The issue then is how we treat each other in that, and the mix of love v pride that is extant with our responses. Doesn’t preclude robust conversation.

    There are people who agree or disagree with each other because they agree or disagree with each other, and then there are those where a good part of that exercise is about ego.

  206. @MN – thats fine

    My question again to you is this though – is the clear teachings in the Scriptures of the very essence and nature of our God – the Trinity – an essential Christian doctrine for salvation?

    You said:
    “Whether he [TVd] was actually discounting the Trinity or not I don’t know. I think he was more so pointing to faith in Christ as the path to salvation and believing in his finished work for us.”

    There you go MN – you have expressly said it yourself in the above statement. You have just said that saving faith has an OBJECT – faith in WHO??? – who is this “Jesus”, a Mexican guy who sells tacos on a street corner in San Jose?

    This Jesus of Nazareth (when he was not making tables and chairs in his back shed), roamed the countryside claiming to be the very God YHWH that arrested Moses at the burning bush refered to in the Torah

    Whether TVd personally believes in or discounts the biblical and historical orthodox teachings from Scripture concerning the Trinity is of little consequence to me – however TVd has EXPRESSLY denied that it is an essential doctrine and teaching for salvation. Lets examine closely what he said:

    [TVdude] “Really? The trinity is the essential doctrine of Christianity? Laying aside the fact that the word trinity isn’t even mentioned in the bible, whether God is one being in three manifestations or is three separate beings doesn’t change the fact that we are only saved through our belief, faith and relationship with Jesus. This is the essential doctrine of Christianity. I mean, come on, this is getting so ridiculous!”

    I would submit to you however that the Trinity is a doctrine where error is ESPECIALLY DEADLY

    When the apostle Paul wrote his second letter to the Corinthian church, he expressed his concern that they remain faithful to the truths they had been taught about God and the gospel in the following words:

    For I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy; for I betrothed you to one husband, so that to Christ I might present you as a pure virgin. But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ. For if one comes and preaches ANOTHER JESUS whom we have not preached, or you receive a DIFFERENT SPIRIT which you have not received, or a DIFFERENT GOSPEL which you have not accepted, you bear this beautifully (2 Corinthians 11:2-4, NASB).

    It is not by mere coincidence or a bit of a laugh that this Scripture links these three: a different Jesus, a different spirit, and a different gospel together in the same warning. Errors concerning the nature of the Godhead naturally lend themselves to errors regarding the gospel

    Dr Walter Martin who founded the Cristian Research Institute and wrote prolifically on the subject of non-christian cults said “One prominent trait of all non-Christian religions and cults is their pointed denial of the scriptural doctrine of the Trinity and the deity of Jesus Christ.”

    You CANNOT separate saving faith from it OBJECT – faith in WHAT – faith in WHO? The union that Christians have in Christ also brings union with the other persons of the GODHEAD. Christ told His disciples that both He and the Father will dwell in them (John 14:23); and also the Holy Spirit (John 14:16-17).

    This is because God the Father made a pretemporal covenant with the Eternal Son (Psalm 110; John 6:38, 17:2; Eph 1:3, 4; Heb. 6:16-17; Heb 10:5) to enter into human history and redeem a people for Himself through His blood.

    The doctrine of the Trinity is one of the most important fundamental beliefs of the Christian Church –

    Persons like TVdude are to be exposed – the Word of God demands it “Now I beseech you, brothers, mark them which cause divisions and offenses CONTRARY TO THE DOCTRINE WHICH YOU HAVE LEARNED; and avoid them.

  207. Further before you send your hate-mail – I am saying we should hold people like TVdude to the Highest standards because they purport to teach and lead God’s flock.

    Therefore I distinguish this from some new convert who has made a dopey comment out of innocent and genuine ignorance – this is a person claiming to be a PASTOR/TEACHER ladies and gentlemen…who refuses to dialogue, who refuses to be corrected

  208. @mosco – if TVdude has come out of C3 church (as he admits), his doctrine (or lack of sound doctrine) is the fruit. It’s been a hard-fought battle for me too, dumping all that stuff. Only God’s providential leading to first, “Charismatic Chaos” which I hated at first, because I didn’t want to believe it. Then listening to John Macarthur, R C Sproul, Paul Washer (ouch!) etc. The Lord broke me and I’m eternally grateful.

    Churches like C3 are quick to ordain almost anybody to wants to run a church under their umbrella. Even connect group leads aren’t seriously vetted. While we were still there as leaders, we had to request that they not appoint someone we knew, to run a group,
    because of serious personal problems.

    This is the example set by this church system that allows guys like TVdude to run their own church, zeal is all you need (and a “degree” from a C3 bible college – that qualifies
    me, oh dear!!) Put these people into any decent seminary around the world for at least 5 years and then see how much more qualified they are, accompanied by that zeal ( which I believe to be sincere).

    If TVdude is hungry for Truth, he will bow the knee.

  209. @Teddy – Im just waiting for the “yeah but God knows his heart” chessnut as if that were somehow good news for any of us!!!

    The zeal appears to me focused solely on the charasmatic gifts – I have noticed how they come alive as soon as tounges are mentioned – and arent they willing to die in a trench over it.

    Thats why I had to laugh when TVD accused you of having expreience driven theology and then went on to another post responding to someone elses comments and trying to defend dopey estatic manifiestations!!!

  210. @teddy

    “If TVdude is hungry for Truth, he will bow the knee.”

    Already have teddy. I bow my knee to Jesus. Some others on this blog would benefit by doing the same.

    Who’s “truth” by the way? Your “truth” gauged by your experiences alone, or the truth contained in God’s Word?

  211. @ mosco – I still try to get my head around the seemingly inate laziness to pursue a higher education at some respected institution (the cemetery/seminary allusion) even online or part time, but instead relying on a personal reading/revelation of the bible as if that’s enough to pastor a church. Can work maybe, but more likely these days to be dangerous, especially those which promote the wife as primary preacher.

    Excuse me while I duck for cover! 🙂

    Researching these churches where women are in that position, and checking their church links, quite often you find a connection to the “Extreme Prophetic/Patricia King/Elijah List” stuff.

  212. While I was still ducking for cover, I was just reading this about Wayne Grudem, a well-known reformed charismatic theologian who has written some intersting words about the role of women.

    “Wayne Grudem, who served as president of the Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood and as president of Evangelical Theological Society, believes it is “a watershed issue.” In his Evangelical Feminism & Biblical Truth: An Analysis of More Than One Hundred Disputed Questions he states: “The issue is not whether we say we believe the Bible is the Word of God or that we believe it is without error, but the issue is whether we actually obey it when its teachings are unpopular and conflict with the dominant viewpoints in our culture. If we do not obey it, then the effective authority of God to govern His people and His church has been eroded.” He also argues that it is a confessional issue. He points to the Southern Baptists, who in 2000 added this formal provision to its official doctrinal statement: “While both men and women are gifted for service in the church, the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture” (added to Article VI, “The Church”).

    The primary purpose of Grudem’s book is to help Christians recover a noble Biblical vision of manhood and woman. He faithfully and carefully explains God’s intent for men and women in home and church and answers a whole range of questions and excuses that are raised against the plain teaching of Scripture. He also shows that the controversy is relatively new in the long history of the church.

    A New Issue

    According to Grudem, during the first eighteen hundred years of the history of the church, women played influential roles in evangelism, prayer, ministries of mercy, writing, financial support, political influence, private exhortation and encouragement and counsel, and teaching of women and children. But with very few exceptions, the church did not find it difficult to understand that only men should be elders and to have the role of teaching God’s Word to the assembled church. But suddenly with the advent of modern feminism, many scholars have decided that the well-known Pauline texts such as 1 Timothy 2:11-14, forbidding women to serve as elders and pastors, are now obscure. Grudem states that modern evangelical advocacy of an egalitarian position probably began in 1974. On the basis of historical evidence he argues, therefore, that the inescapable conclusion is that the ordination of women as office bearers in the church is a very recent North American-European innovation accepted by a very small part of world Christianity.”

  213. These guys totally disrespect the fact that we have been in their positions at one stage – In your instance you were a C3 pastor and I mine, I was jut a lay person at various pente/charasmatic churches.

    Mate, their idea of the early church fathers are Robert Schuller or Kenneth Hagin…. they are ignorant of thier own roots and choose to remain so. They just assume that what they believe is the Biblical and Historical faith – they are taught early on to live their Christian life in connection with the God of Scripture vicariously through super-apostles who “YOU NEED” for a Rhema Word from God, it is the cult of personality that drives the whole machine, it is 30,000 miles wide and an inch deep, while its bank accounts bulge, it is a bankrupt system that stands in in the way of men being saved, it stinks of the sulphur of Rome,

    It is an extremely difficult and painful process remember when I abandoned

  214. This blog is a church of sorts ( a congregation of the saints), therefore if any contributors are women they should remain silent. They can read, but if they have any questions they should ask their husbands. This applies also to all other church gatherings.

    For it clearly says in 1 Cor 14:33-35 ” As in all the congregations of the saints, 34women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. 35If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.”

    This is also the safest policy because if a woman does happen to speak or blog in a public place, she may be in danger of teaching some of the men, and this is clearly prohibited.

    If you dont like it tell God (or ask your husband about it when you get home). Dont argue with me, when it is a clear commandment from God.

  215. @Teddy – thats TVD’s standard polemic “that’s just your interpretation” “that’s just someone you reference because they support your own point of view” …..

    in fact his statement “Who’s “truth” by the way? Your “truth” gauged by your experiences alone” that is the classic vacuous, redundant, self refuting, post modern mindset that cant handle objective truth or cannot meaningfully interact with opposing points of view

  216. @Wazza2 – bit of bait and switch tactics there eh?

    The simple answer to your conundrum if you are a female blog contibutor here is – no – this blog is not a church of sorts

  217. @wazza2 – I’m having a gender neutral life on this blog 😉 . Or if I stop waxing my top lip, I’ll qualify?

  218. Mosco: “It is not by mere coincidence or a bit of a laugh that this Scripture links these three: a different Jesus, a different spirit, and a different gospel together in the same warning. Errors concerning the nature of the Godhead naturally lend themselves to errors regarding the gospel”

    Wow! Great point Mosco!

  219. 🙂 well said Teddy, but in all seriousness do you think it is necessary for women to remain silent in church?

  220. @Specks – cheers Speks, Im glad that one of the most beautiful revelations and teachings of scripture concering the nature of your God is edifying to you.

  221. Wazza – I think the silence refers to teaching and authority over men from the pulpit. Women can play a major complementary role in the church, teaching women, children, serving etc.
    Are men doing women a diservice by allowing them to usurp that position? Is the man even called to pastor if he’s allowing his wife the role of preacher at most services, I see that happening a lot. And these women often have strong wills and are quite sure that because they can teach it must alright to overide God’swords about it.

    Rather like Joyce Meyer’s arrogant pronouncement from the pulpit that if God didn’t want her to preach, why did He give her the gift?

  222. Teddy, 1 Cor 14:33-35 dosent seem to just be limited to the pulpit. It seems to refer to any talking by women in church, even questions that women may have when they dont understand something.

    Perhaps not even limited to churches, because it says “as in all congregations of the saints”, so it could also refer to bible-studies, home groups etc.

  223. Wayne Grudem made the point clear in saying “God never calls people to disobey His word. Our decision on this matter must be based on the objective teaching of the inerrant bible, not on some person’ subjective experience, no matter how godly or sincere that person is. Scripture alone is the final authority”.

    And we taking the Lord’s name in vain when we claim He’s saying something apart from His revealed word?

  224. @Teddy – “Rather like Joyce Meyer’s arrogant pronouncement from the pulpit that if God didn’t want her to preach, why did He give her the gift?”

    For the wrath of God is manifested [is already revealed] from heaven, against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men” Romans 1:8

    False teachers like Joyce are the judgement of God – thats the answer to her question

  225. Wazza2 – have a look at 1 Timothy 2:11-14 “A women should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was decieived and became a sinner” (it then goes to talk about women being saved through childbearing – a reference to Christ.)

    That’s the one that convinces me.

  226. Aquila and Priscilla are teaching Apollos in their home in the book of Acts. So this seems to be that complimentary deal going on and it’s in their home not a synagogue/church.

  227. To Mosco, the character of Jehovah Jesus is foundational to any believers walk. The reason why I’ve made Signposts into a ministrywatch kind-of site at the moment is because the church as a whole HAS been overrun or being influenced by teachers preaching other spirits disguised as our God.

    I walked into a uniting church not long ago. They have their magazines keeping uniting church members aware what the uniting church is doing.

    Through out the magazine, (more towards the back), there were giant adverts of the Hillsong Conference. This one in particular advertised TD Jakes.

    I met some Anglican and Baptist friends who were going to both Hillsong Conference and C3 Presence Conference this year. So they would have sat through Kong Hee’s nonsense and heretic Gordon Moore’s blasphemies on the power of God being money.

    I believe the church as a whole is being forced to work together and in this time period, churches have to make hard decisions who they will be working with as brothers in the body of Christ.

    If I was a missionary working hard with poor Africans, I would not work beside Kong Hee or Phil Pringle as my brother. They preach a different god to the one I know. Their god is foreign to the god of the bible. Same with TD Jakes.

    While the emerging church seems to break away with the luke-warm and current-confused church, I feel like it is many Christian’s jobs to focus on the church, point Christian’s away from so called ‘preachers, teachers, prophets, healers, apostles and leaders’ and point them to the bible.

    The nature of God is of course ESSENTIAL to Christianity. If we do not have an understanding of the nature of God, we do not know the Power behind the Gospel that we are called to preach.

    TO deny the doctrine of the trinity is to deny the God of the bible. I do have problems calling God as three persons ‘trinity’. I prefer to worship my triune God, not my ‘trinity’.

    After coming out of a church similar to the Potter’s House, I do see that they do in fact worship a a different god to the bible. Their Jesus is a liar. And the Jesus they love is disconnected from them. Many believe that they are saved by their works. Many don’t understand the significance of the atonement or resurrection.

    To deny the trinity is to deny the God of the bible and His ‘called out people’.

  228. @teddy

    “that made no sense at all!”

    Ok, sorry. I’ll try to rephrase it. The point I was trying to make was that you say if I am hungry for the “truth”…. I am wondering who’s truth you are referring to – the truth that you have “discovered” through your own personal experiences, or the actual truth that is in the bible.

  229. @specks – Chris Rosebrough read an article on his programme about African churches sending missionaries to the West – and they are seriously concerned about the state of churches in our culture, here and in the US.

  230. I’ve been wanting to post my thoughts up about why I’ve taken Signposts02 to more of a ministry-watch phase, but I wasn’t sure how to write it.

    I’ve observed that many different church denominations are working together with members on different community events and projects. This is great.

    The church is recognising that as long as we worship one Lord and Saviour, we can get along in spite of denominational traditions. On the other hand, we’re also being forced to go to the bible and reject those who preach or speak falsely on God.

    I’ve noticed healthy pentecostal/charismatic churches work with other local churches that are baptist, anglican and uniting. It’s interesting to note that many of them are much more bible focused these days and not conference focused.

  231. @TVdude – the “experiences” were all at C3. The truth is in His word, that’s right but I had to leave to find it.

  232. to Teddy:
    About Africa, I’ve talked to missionaries who have considered going back to the West to reintroduce them to the God of the bible. The missionaries I’ve talked to are devastated what prosperity missionaries are doing to African communities.

    They know I run this blog and are grateful that blogs like this are making people aware of false gospels and self-promoters.

    This is one reason I was so outraged with C3 planting a church in Nagaland. While the majority of the people are already Christian, whoever C3 outreaches too will only be polluted with a different gospel and a different god that is spoken of in the bible.

  233. Mosco: “My question again to you is this though – is the clear teachings in the Scriptures of the very essence and nature of our God – the Trinity – an essential Christian doctrine for salvation?”

    Well that is my belief. But I was commenting about TVD.

    I took from his comment that he saw Jesus as divine – and will assume both man and God.

    To me it seems you’re spoiling for a fight. There is a solution to this I suppose, and that is is to leave you to it.

    Coming on here often seems to me to be an exercise of preparing to go into armed combat with people who are supposed to be your brothers and sisters.

    As I’ve remarked before on here a very wise and learned tough man once told me the bible is 90% descriptive and 10% presciptive.

    Too many Christians spend their lives trying to invert that number.

    For instance I have had the discussion over women in leadership both here on SP and with my pastor and basically been unable to get any change.

    So in terms of church do I then dummy spit, take my bat and ball and go home? Or do I try and continue to be useful in someway?

    Wazza actually made a genuine point, which I don’t you can weasel out of as easily as you have tried to ge away with: church is not, and never was the pulpit or a building. To that extent it is very much an issue about about what women say and don’t say – and the pulpit response is totally fudging it.

    From a Christian point of view RP is one of the wisest I have come across over the decades, and I have learned quite a bit from both what the views she puts, and also how she walks the tightrope of putting her view, while not walking roughshod over others – something which a great many posters including myself from time to time fail abysmally in.

    I think the Trinity and the divinity of Jesus is a critical doctrinal issue. Putting aside the three in one nature/being of God which I defy anyone to definitively lay to rest, the divinity of Jesus is central without that we are bereft and have nothing.

    But it is instructive what the nature of many conversations/debates Christians are involved in – tithing and money, leadership, who has what gift, the role of women in church.

    I will agree the divinity issue is core, key, crux. But often these other ones are front and centre. We tend not to focus on or argue about how much love, grace, fruits of the Spirit (harking back to Bull’s very important point). If we were living those things in the Spirit there would a lot more humility, and a lot less argument which would be also focussed on really key and important issues.

    But its about being right, isn’t it? Is it about knowing the truth? I wish it was. I would be more comfortable if it was, because maybe the debates would be less about ego, where the fellowship component is up, and the ‘us and them’ component down.

  234. “As I’ve remarked before on here a very wise and learned tough man once told me the bible is 90% descriptive and 10% presciptive.”

    That is the finest and most Biblical assertion I have ever seen on this blog

  235. Mosco – fine posts there on the trinity.

    “The missionaries I’ve talked to are devastated what prosperity missionaries are doing to African communities.”

    I’ve heard similar things too. It’s ironic that in the poorest places there are preachers living in incredible luxury. In many non-western countries the pastor just replaces the witch doctor type person who does blessings and cursing for money.

    here’s a question for you though guys which will leave me ducking for cover too. What is the difference between what Joyce Meyers does and Teddy does here? The critic may argue that Teddy attempts to teach TVdude a lot. Should the women keep silence on the blogs too?

    Joyce Meyers rents a building and people gather and hear her speak from the bible (and her experiences). she is not a Pastor and has no authority over anyone as far as I know. Men don’t have to go and hear her either – and I would say that most of her fans are women who like hearing about diets and not getting angry at their husbands and stuff like that.
    But if what she is doing is not valid, then maybe it’s not valid for women here to be so insulting and combatative towards TVdude a male and a Pastor. The bible sure says a lot about women but it also talks about having a “meek and quiet spirit”.

    Ironic that a woman is loudly and …unmeekly bashing a male Pastor for daring to allow his wife to preach on the basis that women should keep silence.

    But I guess blogs are different because there is no physical pulpit?

    Disclaimer –
    1. My feeling about “meek and quiet” may be culturally biased.
    2. I have met some truly wonderful women who are running small churches in countries where CHristians are very few, and they would probably love to just be married and slip into the background.
    3. Teddy writes good truth, and Joyce Meyers has said some good things about everyday living that I can relate to.

    So if I don’t duck fast enough and get a pie in the face, I won’t cry foul.

  236. Good to see s&p admits this is now a ministey watch site. You should, therefore, make yourselves accountable to all apologists for those you analise or criticise. If you don’t you are one-sided and biased, only answerable to yourselves.

  237. Churchman your question is spot on.

    And I will state that I personally am very uncomfortable with women teaching in church. I have put myself in harms way over this in earlier times, but I have given up on making an issue of it, because in my estimation of where I am that it will do far more harm than good.

  238. “I’ve heard similar things too. It’s ironic that in the poorest places there are preachers living in incredible luxury.”

    It disgusted me that in the nineties that CCC had a rich African preacher parade the stage, describing his church and his glass walls and the type of carpet and seating he had… then discuss his wealth and the number of expensive cars he collects and drives.

    Then in his PRIDE and arrogance stated he knew why God had blessed him and not his congregation or his African brothers and sisters.

  239. A/C rendered: “Good to see s&p admits this is now a ministey watch site.”

    I didn’t say it was a ministry watch site. I said:

    “I’ve been wanting to post my thoughts up about why I’ve taken Signposts02 to more of a ministry-watch PHASE, but I wasn’t sure how to write it.”

    I think this will be a season.

    Indeed it’s been a long one.

  240. Looking back over this blog, you will find that I asked TVdude to be our Claytons FL, a role he has certainly filled to perfection.

    TVdude has said he’s ex C3 and has hinted at valid reasons for leaving. However he displays at times the same mindset I saw before we left. He hasn’t left Pentecostalism obviously (no problem there, it’s what you teach that counts), he’s not reformed to my knowledge, I don’t attack him personally, only hold the light of scripture up to his methods. We can agree to disagree, but he hasn’t proven that a woman as primary preacher is biblical, but I don’t expect him to – he says he goes by personal revelation.

    This is a blog!!! Not a church, a place where initially someone could go and discuss their concerns about the church, especially the ones they leave. Playing silly buggers about whether this is an appropriate place for women to “talk” – come on! Have an all male dialogue if you like? That would then exclude RP’s gentle “teaching”.

    @mn – I’m not RP, or FL, or Specks – I’m Teddy, momma, poppa or baby bear depending on the topic. 🙂 You would have to tighten your seatbelt if you came to a gathering at our house, with not just me but 4 highly opinionated daughters and a very funny highly opinionated son. And then there’s the big gruff head of the household who can shut us all up with just a few wise words before going off to arm wrestle his only son and win.

  241. Teddy I’m not playing silly buggers, just pointing out some inconsistencies on both sides of the fence. And I’m used to opinionated women

    In terms of church I have more in-depth conversations with people here, than I do at my own church.

    I would agree we are not a ‘formal church’. But the nature of church is not fixed, and we are increasingly becoming at least in this country and others and on-line culture where serious talking and communications is also becoming more online.

    To me this is as much church as the one I’m about to head off to – with the associated issues.

  242. @MN – no “Im not spoiling for a fight” and you can dramatise it all you want. What I am spoiling for is for debate – meaningful, consistent interaction.

    Now, when you use perjoritive language against me such as “I don’t [think] you can weasel out of as easily as you have tried” – are you not being inconsistent with the standards that you set for me? or is that just dottery old me spoiling for a fight again?

    So, AGAIN MN, in the interests of assuring you that i was not weaseling out of anything – I was trying to point out with a simple satement (because according to your reasoning much else would be, ipso facto, an exercise indulging ego) that the Scriptures clearly establish that women should not serve as elders (1 Timothy 2:11-15) – they (scriptures) have this annoying tendency to point us not just to all knowledge necessary for salvation and holiness but also issues governing Christian life and devotion – which is why Sinners generally dont regard them too highly

    Now, does that mean women may not serve in ministry – NO because All believers are called upon to serve and minster to one another…

    Therefore to conflate the two results in a logical fallacy called a non-sequitur (it doesnt follow).

    MN – just because the Scriptures clearly establish that women should not serve as elders it doesnt necessarily follow that women cannot therefore contribute to a stupid web blog –

    If all of this is just spoiling for a fight again in your estimation then dont bother responding coz Im really not – however, if you want to interact with my comments then you can do just that

    Have you ever witnessed to anyone who thought your beliefs in the exclusivity of Christs attonement for sinners was narrow minded and unkind and unloving and spoiling for a fight because your “truth” is not the same as their “truth”

  243. @ mn- I see your point, about this blog community.

    Just came home from church, having left a discussion with a church member who has some really strange ideas about this earth we live on. It’s not just in pente churches that we find the unusual. He was wearing long silver rings on every finger that he claims, represents the origins of Christianity and all other religions in China – so leaving him to go to an appointment was a pity! He also believes opium and marijuana are custom made by God for the human brain………hmmmm? Anglican churches are fun. 🙂

  244. I regard this blog as a gathering of both the church and interested others. Being a blog, we can’t talk loudly in tongues and upset anyone that way… in other words the issues here aren’t the same ones as in other gatherings. Also, we have no membership. We have people who drop in, stay for a while, and drop out. We have others who have been here from our beginning. Those of us who have stayed around know eachother’s views better than some of those we physically meet in our physical church gatherings.

    There is a case biblically that a church gathering meets in someone’s home, but no one here would say that that is how all churches _must_ regularly gather. Likewise, it is very difficult to say that a church must gather in a hall, with a pulpit or equivalent, with one man preaching, and any other paraphenalia. We could mount a case that smaller is better – in order to share the Lord’s supper in a more meaningful way perhaps. But we know that we are not to be legalistic about these things, and different forms of gathering will have different advantages or otherwise at different times and places.

    So this particular gathering is just one kind of gathering of some part of the body of Christ. In that sense, it is an expression of church. I do not think that in any of our minds it replaces physically gathering with other Christians, yet many of us have found something here that we are missing in other settings. The discussions here aren’t for everyone all the time, but they are different from in our other groups, partly because we often present more viewpoints than we find elsewhere.

    My hope is just that we can disagree with respect, rather than by belittling one another. Without a doubt, most of us do agree about certain aspects of spiritual abuse.

    MN, thank you for your very kind words earlier. To be honest, you are very encouraging, because at times I do consider giving up this blog altogether, when the tone persists in a direction I am just not comfortable with.

    Wazza, I really appreciate that you have put forward some comments questioning the hard set view that women should not ever teach men. I’m not even going to go there because its pointless knowing I’ll be shouted down. Anyway, those who disagree will not be convinced at all by a woman anyway. There is an alternative scriptural view about women in leadership – that is all I will say. Anyone interested can do their own research. It should be taught by churches who do have female pastors though. In some Pente circles, it looks like they approve women teaching – but really it is only because they are ‘covered’ by a man.

    As for those arguments that say ‘Joyce Meyer’ or others are God’s judgement – well, I could just as easily pull out a significantly larger bunch of men, in charge of the most heinous crimes, since historically that is most church leadership. A bit rough on poor old Joyce anyway, since yes, she basically has a women’s ministry.

    Anyway, this issue might not be such an issue – or might be a different issue – if the form of church that predominates didn’t put one man over many, on a raised up pulpit. The role assumes greater sway and significance than it would have had when there was a genuine plurality of elders and teachers in a community, or when meetings were frequently held in people’s houses. Also, if women were actually chosen based on gifting, rather than on whom they are married to, perhaps they’d get a better rap. In Pente circles anyway.

    Re the direction of this blog – Specks’s emphasis is ministry watch for now as he said. Personally, this is not so much my thing. Not that I’m implying its wrong – it does help people. I like looking at the doctrines more though. Ministries are singular, but the doctrines cover a much wider range of churches.

    There’s value for me personally in going over some of the stuff I was taught and refuting it or looking at other viewpoints that were missing for all those years in a more limited environment. I’m wary of any movement that claims it has all or most of the answers, and there are many of them. We have to question all of them. One bunch of movements we don’t look at much here are the one’s more inclined towards social justice issues. These movements sometimes see many of the evangelical movements as lacking a third dimension to their faith. But they too can become a bit legalistic about the involvement of Christians in social justice issues at times, it seems to me.

    I’m also interested in where the church is heading these days – so in a way, learning about NAR etc has been illuminating. I represent those who are no longer attending an organised church, but organised church has its place and is here to stay, and suits many people. I’d just like it if people generally recognised the church wherever it exists, beyond the building.

    I may be around less while things are in their ministry watch phase, and while the voice shifts to the Calvinists here, just because I’ve left a Calvinist setting as well as Pentecostalism, and know that in that setting, the things I want to reflect on won’t crop up as often. I think the useful thing about the Reformed emphasis is the renewed focus on Christ as the centre of things. It is pretty important. (Understatement.) There are still many other parts of the church that have value though, and I’m enjoying the balance of some of those over time.

  245. @RP – just re Joyce Meyer – not half as concerned about her lack of male plumbing than her defective Word of Faith Christology

  246. @RP

    “One bunch of movements we don’t look at much here are the one’s more inclined towards social justice issues. These movements sometimes see many of the evangelical movements as lacking a third dimension to their faith. But they too can become a bit legalistic about the involvement of Christians in social justice issues at times, it seems to me.”

    Great comment, I am probably more peved about the hijacking of the Gospel of Christs Atonement for sinners for a false gospel that wants to make the world a better place from which people can go to hell, than I have been about any other thing discussed on this thread

    Stick around RP as that could provoke some great fights (oops – I mean conversations MN!!!)

  247. @RP

    I dont think the Calvanistic view is that strong here, there is only 2 of us as far as I am aware – but out of interest, what made you abandon/move away from the reformation churches?

  248. @teddy

    “but he hasn’t proven that a woman as primary preacher is biblical, but I don’t expect him to – he says he goes by personal revelation.”

    I’ll enter that debate if you like. It’s a topic I have definite views on. I was reluctant to add my two cents worth because I didn’t feel like copping any more bizzare rants from Mosco, who has some strange obsession with my views on the trinity, which he has completely gotten wrong, a trait that seems to be his forte’.

    As for your last statement, my only and final authority is God’s Word.

  249. For the record, I personally dont have a problem with women’s leadership in any part of the church, including teaching and pastoral ministry.

    People from an evangelical/protestant tradition who accept this kind of leadership use an interpretation of the scriptures, which I think is perfectly valid.

    Its just that I think if you use a literalistic interpretation to judge other’s actions, then you are bound to a legalistic interpretation for yourself. I think its inconsistent to deny pastoral ministry for women on the one hand, but then allow women to speak in the church, allow divorcees remarriage in the church, etc. etc.

  250. @TVgospel

    “a trait that seems to be his forte” – As a lover of all things rhetorical myself – at least I can say that when I enter debates I can finish it – its on record TVD – what happened to our theological discussion on the Hebrews 6:1 and 5:12-14…..

  251. @Mosco

    “what happened to our theological discussion on the Hebrews 6:1 and 5:12-14…..”

    Nothing. You demanded scholarly sources, I gave them to you. End of discussion. I’m not interested in playing duelling commentaries. You know my opinion, I know yours. There’s nowhere else that discussion can go.

  252. @TVd – with respect, your opinion is totally, absolutely and conclusively 100% the very thing which I was trying to avoid. Thats whay I asked for proper exegesis and secondary scholarly sources.

    You cut and pasted the non-conformist puritan presbyterian commentary (not Henry’s precisiely) on those verses in Hebrews – you did not even attempt to apply them to your orginal thesis (which is on the record) – you did not even attempt to offer any meaningful exegesis in the verses and how precisesly they apply to your thesis

    Mate – Do you HONESTLY believe that a protestatnt Presbyterian Reformed minister and scholar who would rather be toasted on the skewer than to abandon the centrality of the Gospel (i.e. the PURPOSE of the friggin REFORMATION) in a Chritian’s life, who was activiely resisting Roman Catholic soteriology would HONESTLY espouse your view that the writer of the Hebrews was some how suggesting abandonment of the Gospel for other things – the Gospel IS the weightier, loftier, deeper thing that the Apostle was trying to get these gooses to realise not the smells and bells of the old sacrifical system which was a type and shadow of its fulfillment in Christ.

    In that regard, have you read the introduction of the commenatary to chapter 5 of Hebrews? READ IT TVDUDE – its exactly what I said the meaning of “milk”
    in a metaphorical sense was being used as – A DEEPER UNDERSTANDING OF CHRISTS PREISTLY OFFICE AND THE PRIESTLY OFFICE OF MELCHIZIDEK IN THE OLD TESTAMENT!!!!

    It says

    “In this chapter the apostle continues his discourse upon the priesthood of Christ, a sweet subject, which he would not too soon dismiss. And here, I. He explains the nature of the priestly office in general, ver. 1-3. II. The proper and regular call there must be to this office, ver. 4-6. III. The requisite qualifications for the work, ver. 7-9. IV. The peculiar order of the priesthood of Christ; it was not after the order of Aaron, but of Melchisedec, ver. 6, 7, 10. V. He reproves the Hebrews, that they had not made THOSE improvements in knowledge which might have made them capable of looking into the more abstruse and mysterious parts of scripture, ver. 11-14.

    While I at it the introduction to the whole epistle sort of slam dunks your whole theory on the Trinity not being an essential christian doctrine:

    “Concerning this epistle we must enquire, I. Into the divine authority of it; for this has been questioned by some, whose distempered eyes could not bear the light of it, or whose errors have been confuted by it; such as the Arians, who deny the Godhead and self-existence of Christ; and the Socinians”

    Now can you you point to anything else to support your thesis?

  253. @ TVdude – the only answer to your dilemma is to refer to unbelieving naturalistic materialistic liberal scholarship which despises the idea of the substitutionary atonement and rejects any suggestion of the supernatural (that would make them pretty strange theological bedfellows with you – would it not???)

  254. @Mosco

    “You cut and pasted the non-conformist puritan presbyterian commentary (not Henry’s precisiely) ”

    What are you smoking Mosco? I mean, seriously. Are you for real?

    “abandonment of the Gospel…”

    Show me where I said this. I never said that at all. As usual you twist and misconstrue everything I said. I am stating that to preach solely on the subject of Christ crucified at all times is not beneficial to the spiritual growth of a believer. You know that this is what I am saying, but for some twisted reason you are spoiling for a fight, and I am not willing to do that.

  255. @TVDude

    Ok to be fair theres 2 parts to your objection – the first is about your quote “You cut and pasted the non-conformist puritan presbyterian commentary (not Henry’s precisiely)”

    can you tell me what is wrong with what I said there?

  256. Sorry – I mean my quote!!! “You cut and pasted the non-conformist puritan presbyterian commentary (not Henry’s precisiely)”

  257. MN: “To me it seems you’re spoiling for a fight. There is a solution to this I suppose, and that is is to leave you to it….Coming on here often seems to me to be an exercise of preparing to go into armed combat with people who are supposed to be your brothers and sisters.”

    That’s how you come across to me, and the language you use is very much in line with that.

    MN: “Wazza actually made a genuine point, which I don’t think you can weasel out of as easily as you have tried to get away with: church is not, and never was the pulpit or a building. To that extent it is very much an issue about about what women say and don’t say – and the pulpit response is totally fudging it.”

    Guilty as charged – sue me. You are the first to have a go if someone doesn’t deal with the issue to your satisfaction.

    You asked RP why she left a reformed church.

    Well as both Teddy and RP know I left one after 17 years – having taken three years to leave my earlier church…

    Reason?

    Too legalistic – focus on getting it right, not enough love showing, and a recycling church for Free Reformed guys that could no longer hack that. It was killing me, my wife and my kids. To not have left would possibly have meant that the faith of all would have been crushed under the burden of not having met expectations by the pastors in the last few years there (not the first years). A faith that was too intellectualised. The tone I hear from you on average is a whole lot more ‘in the face’ – probably more honest I guess. But if you teaching me now face to face, I would walk out or deck you – which taking into account that response would be wrong of me, also says something about you.

    Why do you want to debate? For what purpose?
    You say you just want a debate, but your language says otherwise – even the remark to RP where I am not sure it is an attempt at humour or not about debates..

    Let’s have a read of some Mosco’isms

    Mosco: “TVdude you crap on like none of us have ever darkened the door of an abusive apostate cult-like church – I have been there as much as you have (like many here). I put Kenneth Copeland’s kids through school (supporting his stinking tape ministry (may a thousand flies infest his arse)). What you are selling is not news to me, I sympathise with your situation and I can identify totally – but honestly, from what I have read here, you have no earthly business behind a pulpit.”

    Mosco: “With that Ladies and Gentlemen….TVdude has left the building – I guess we will have to write on his blogisphere epitaph “As a Pastor – he made a Pretty Good Layman”. If you rise again from etherial grave Lazareth remember that I only asked 2 questions that can be answered by anyone armed with nothing more than a knowledge of the basic synopsis of the book of Galatians….”

    Mosco: “Now, when you use perjoritive language against me such as “I don’t [think] you can weasel out of as easily as you have tried” – are you not being inconsistent with the standards that you set for me? or is that just dottery old me spoiling for a fight again? Just because the Scriptures clearly establish that women should not serve as elders it doesnt necessarily follow that women cannot therefore contribute to a stupid web blog.”

    Mosco: “If all of this is just spoiling for a fight again in your estimation then dont bother responding coz Im really not – however, if you want to interact with my comments then you can do just that.”

    MN: do you expect I’m not going to respond? What sort of interaction do you expect?

    Mosco: “Have you ever witnessed to anyone who thought your beliefs in the exclusivity of Christs attonement for sinners was narrow minded and unkind and unloving and spoiling for a fight because your “truth” is not the same as their “truth””

    MN: Yes.

    Mosco: “Stick around RP as that could provoke some great fights (oops – I mean conversations MN!!!)

    MN: Giveaway even if a joke

    Mosco: “…at least I can say that when I enter debates I can finish it.”

    Mosco: “A DEEPER UNDERSTANDING OF CHRISTS PREISTLY OFFICE AND THE PRIESTLY OFFICE OF MELCHIZIDEK IN THE OLD TESTAMENT!!!!”

    MN: Yelling

    Mosco: “While I at it the introduction to the whole epistle sort of slam dunks your whole theory on the Trinity not being an essential christian doctrine:
    “Concerning this epistle we must enquire, I. Into the divine authority of it; for this has been questioned by some, whose distempered eyes could not bear the light of it, or whose errors have been confuted by it; such as the Arians, who deny the Godhead and self-existence of Christ; and the Socinians”
    Now can you you point to anything else to support your thesis?”

    MN: Defeat – no oxygen left in the room – Mosco has sucked it all up.

    Mosco: “@ TVdude – the only answer to your dilemma is to refer to unbelieving naturalistic materialistic liberal scholarship which despises the idea of the substitutionary atonement and rejects any suggestion of the supernatural (that would make them pretty strange theological bedfellows with you – would it not???)”

    MN: I mean where is anyone supposed to go with this, after you have bludgeoned them half to death with your theological superiority?

    Have a read, have a think…

  258. MN – if you are the christian blogisphere paragon of virtue that I should aspire to emulate, please explain to me why you cannot adhere to the standards that you expect from me – yourself?

    While you are striding the moral high ground – would assist TVdude in answering my original question:

    What is the “milk” referred to by the author of Hebrews and ist it as TVdude has asserted:

    “But remember, as Paul wrote to the Hebrews, we need to move on from the “milk” (the gospel) and onto solid food. If all every preacher ever did was to preach Christ and Him crucified then we as a church would still be babes spiritually. It is imperative that we discover the depth of God’s Word and grow in spiritual maturity by teaching and learning about the fullness of Christ.”

  259. @MN – ok –

    My bit is this – your comment (brilliant by the way) earlier is a real good start to answering the question:

    “As I’ve remarked before on here a very wise and learned tough man once told me the bible is 90% descriptive and 10% presciptive.

    Too many Christians spend their lives trying to invert that number.”

    I rekon that is a great starting point for the “meat” of the Gospel that the Apostles preached – it is really sad that the Scriptures are so full and rich of such promises to the believer in light of such imperatives and indicatives

    I consider your vitriol about my “theological superiority” to be the joke on you as I have never so much as even met a decent theologian let alone completed any formal study

  260. That makes two of us.

    Not vitriol – an observation on how you relate your point of view. It is very confrontational. I don’ see the need for it – that’s all.

  261. You make the same point and engage people in the exact debate without it, and get more of a genuine response which I take it that you want.

    And I don’ pretend to any paragon of virtue – far from it – your words not mine – a put down again.

  262. @MN –

    What is the “milk” referred to by the author of Hebrews and ist it as TVdude has asserted:

    “But remember, as Paul wrote to the Hebrews, we need to move on from the “milk” (the gospel) and onto solid food. If all every preacher ever did was to preach Christ and Him crucified then we as a church would still be babes spiritually. It is imperative that we discover the depth of God’s Word and grow in spiritual maturity by teaching and learning about the fullness of Christ.”

  263. In answer to your question the Gospel is the beginning of everything, and foundational to all but it is a birth and not the life. You can’t ever get away from Jesus being both man and God died for our sin and rose on the third day – but it is the beginning and not the end. We should never lose sight of our first love, but has to ‘meat’ goes beyond that.

    I think that was TVD” point.

    It would be good if he did engage with this as well.

  264. We should never lose sight of our first love, but has to ‘meat’ goes beyond that.

    could you just clarify that please?

  265. @MN – in light of what you have said above (which I have borne the brunt of directly) – for your own credibility, I should reasonably expect that you would go beyond what TVd’s point is and give me your own as well – anything less than that then you have an absolute hyde saying that I am trying to “weasle” out of things…

  266. This is the weirdest blog with the weirdest regulars. And I mean that as a compliment.
    Catching up reading on a day or two’s posts makes my head spin ( in a non-Toronto way)

  267. I’m picturing mn and mosco with black hats, black coats and long side curls in that orthodox “fiddler on the roof” kind of way.

  268. May be tomorrow after I have had a specific think about it – the issue not being something that I have thought through recently – at least not to your satisfaction anyway.

    But Hebrews is not the only place that talks about this. Paul discussed it in 1 Cor as well which was a pretty dysfunctional church – much as we are I guess:

    Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly—mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready. You are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly? Are you not acting like mere men? For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not mere men?.

    The Hebrews passage is buried in a book where the writer seems to be trying to explain to Jewish Christians who Jesus is all over again using their Jewish context to make his points, and whereby he gets top this statement:

    “We have much to say about this, but it is hard to explain because you are slow to learn. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God, instruction about baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. And God permitting, we will do so.

    This seems to indicate they need to have re-estasblished for them who the person of Christ is, what He has done for them, and what this means for them – this is milk, not solid food. He also says that this means they are not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness.

    So it seems to me if you want more of an understanding about what solid food is then we need to understand what this teaching about righteousness refers to. My interlinear is in use somewhere else at the moment so I can’t go and get other references to that might indicate what that is. Later in Heb 6 the author says following this point up:

    “we are confident of better things in your case — things that accompany salvation.”

    So meat refers to something beyond salvation alone.

    Skipping ahead to Heb 12 we read:

    “…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons:
    “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
    because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son.”

    Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live! Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

    Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. “Make level paths for your feet,” so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed.

    Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. 15See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many. ……See to it that you do not refuse him who speaks……..Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our “God is a consuming fire.”

    My take is that this righteousness helps us to do what God is expecting of us here which is a lifelong hard slog.

    Without being able to look at what righteousness means in that context, given that word in English is used extensively throughout the NT, I can’t really give you a considered opinion on what I think it is.

  269. Yeah Teddy, well I almost feel as though it is appropriate for me to be prostrate before the wailing wall at the moment. Ewisshh!!

  270. I’ve found this site yesterday so if I’m out of line, out of place, or off the mark, I apologise.

    I was at the C3OF morning service yesterday. A Pringle video “message” was played detailed his (and I guess C3’s) siding up to City Harvest in Singapore. I left knowing that I could no longer pretend Pringle or C3 was for me.

    I’ve really tried to close my eyes to the toxic undercurrent so I could continue to go, but this was too much.

    I have someone very important to me that is part of this place but I can’t pretend anymore.

    I’ve no idea what to do, but I’m grateful I stumbled across this site.

    Anyway, discussion seems to have moved on.

  271. @ mv – I have more than one still there. This blog gives many the opportunity to discuss issues that have surfaced through their experiences at C3 and other churches. The discussion can go wherever you want it to, and if we can bring some insight, or encouragement, hang around. Read back over old posts, you will find an interesting group here, we don’t always agree but it certainly helps to air our grievances.

    Having spent 22 years there, it can take some time, to slip the “ties that bind”. At the end of the day, I think I have to take responsibility for what I allowed myself to sit under, for so long – instead of being like the Bereans, commended by the apostle Paul, for considering even his words carefully against scripture.

  272. @teddy

    “I think I have to take responsibility for what I allowed myself to sit under, for so long – instead of being like the Bereans, commended by the apostle Paul, for considering even his words carefully against scripture.”

    Agree 100%. I wish more people understood that. Act 17:11 is one of our foundational scriptures at my church.

  273. RP, don’t misunderstand. I don’t really think it’s wrong for women to talk, lecture, converse on a blog. Not at all.

    And I would listen to a tape of a woman preacher. And for all that I don’t like about Joyce Meyers in some respects, listening to her while driving has been fun. Her forte is sharing how she overcome her everyday life struggles while sharing bible verses. I see nothing wrong with that, and prefer listening to her than most male preachers.

    So, don’t stop talking. Same goes for Teddy. Anyway, I’m used to listening to women – I’m married.

    Was just trying to make a silly point, and for a moment I felt a bit sorry for TV dude. I always end up siding with the underdog.

  274. @ MV – what was the toxic undercurrent that troubled you? If you don’t mind my asking, have you been attending for long, a particular age group? What would you like to see change at C3?

  275. @Teddy:
    “I have more than one still there…”

    I only really have one. In responding to your questions I fear I’ll write something I’ll later regret – I am trying – bear with me. At the moment I’m just so frustrated and angry.

    The regulatory frameworks underpinning local not-for-profit organisations never envisaged the hybrid-style corporate structures C3 and HS employ to ring-fence accountability and corporate governance to ensure fiduciary transparency is only for the faith-fool. This was a contentious issue for us.

    It always seemed a case of the proverbial “elephant in the room” when the call to tithe began.

  276. MV: “I was at the C3OF morning service yesterday. A Pringle video “message” was played detailed his (and I guess C3’s) siding up to City Harvest in Singapore. I left knowing that I could no longer pretend Pringle or C3 was for me.”

    I think I saw you gag!

  277. @churchman – It’s OK – I know that no one here, including you, actually believes that women shouldn’t share on this blog, regardless of any of our other views. 🙂 I’m not offended. No one would stay here if they minded women sharing here, since there are two of us who comment frequently, and others who join in at times.

    I have a bit less opportunity to comment right now, and I’m not on my own computer, either.

    @MV – sounds like you are in a difficult position right now which has been some time in the making. I also left Phil Pringle’s C3 many years ago, and another C3 a couple of years ago, which for me was a decision to leave the entire C3 movement. I blogged here for a while before I left the most recent one, and it took some time for us (my husband and I) to actually stop going, despite being disturbed at the direction our church was heading in. It can take a while to sort things through. Relationships can certainly see you stay for a while despite having significant difficulties with what is being taught or promoted.

    For me, the tithing thread was the first one I unravelled, but then other supporting doctrines fell apart as well. The emperor had no clothes. It is hard to stay once you realise. Nonetheless, it is a big decision to go.

    If it will help to share here, or just read some of the articles over time, then you are most welcome, and I’m sure that various people here will pray for you.

    We’ve covered a lot of ground here over time; we’ve done posts on tithing, covering, submission, vision and views of church, which were influenced by the culture you are in.

    After leaving, some have found new church communities and others like me aren’t attending anywhere right now (still see myself as part of the church at large though), but we are all passionate about our faith, which seems if anything to have grown in moving on.

    So I hope you will find it helpful here in some way. God bless.

  278. really….

    were you in any of the the front rows?

    BTW, what is it with the unshaven look? Houston does it too. The pair of them dress like arts students from a second tier university – they’re profoundly narcissistic…… it’s so creepy.

  279. Just one more thing – right now I think that financial transparency is one of the biggest issues regarding the megachurches today.

  280. @ Ravingpente

    Appreciate your kind words.

    I suspect the inability of these churches to operate with a degree of conscience and decency given the inherent lattitude afforded “charitable” organisations under the current regulatory regime, the ASIC and FSR will ammend the framework within which they are regulated to remove temptation.

  281. My prayer is that these churches listen and change, and sit back and look at where they’ve gone so wrong and when did it start to happen. If they don’t listen to good people that have concerns over many of these issues then I think overtime they will unravel. Unfortunately for the church this can happen in the media.

  282. Glittergirl, That’s the sign for me of an organization (church or company) that has problems. It’s when good, faithful people speak out first privately and then finally leave. It’s one thing for rebels and newbies, but when the faithful leave, a good leader should start thinking.

    RP, I’d be interested to know how it goes when a married couple leave a church. It would be one thing if both had exactly the same feelings at the same time, but I imagine in many cases their is a lag. It must be terribly difficult if one wants to leave 6 months before the other. From a male point of view, I know it would be hard if I wanted to leave and thought things were amiss but the wife though I was the one with the wrong spirit.

    MV, Good question about the unshaven look. I suppose they think the grunge factor is cool and it will be good for attracting and keeping young people. What’s interesting about the contemporary church is that for the first time in history we have “young people’s churches”. Many contemporary church Pastors openly and uncategorically state that their VISION and mission statement is to build a “next generation church”. My gut feeling is that this is wrong. But, I can’t argue that it doesn’t work. Recently a Pastor told me plainly that older (probably 40 plus, but certainly 60 plus) would not like their church and they aren’t even trying to reach them. It’s interesting given that our societies are actually getting older, and in the country I live in, if you ignore the 50 plus crowd, your mission is really going for a small segment.

    In other words, some older people will never go to a church will a grunge pastor and the music they play. In my heart of hearts I think the ideal is a multi-generation church where the Pastor can talk to the children, the young men, the old men, the old women, where the older men and older women can teach the younger ones.

    Even from a pentecostal perspective, I like to think that there is good “annointed” music that would resonate in the spirits or 11, 21, and 81 year old born again, spirit filled believers.

    But, it seems I am wrong. Which is why I can’t seem to fit in anywhere these days….

  283. Churchman I agree. I think those that are long timers and speak out are very brave. Having been in the enironment for 25 years, I always had my opinions and was upset but only ever expressed it to another couple who were friends and I knew had the same issues. I left due to personal circumstances that were unavoidable and very painful and I wasnt able to continue in that environment.

    When you have been in that environment it is hard to go back to a traditional church, but I have found one that is great and I go occasionally, but I’m not involved. It takes a long time to work your head out after all of this.

    I also agree that these churches are great for the young, but they are missing out on so much by not catering for the older generation because one day those young ones will move on too if they don’t change their vision. It should be a family, a community where all ages are respected and embraced. I agree wholeheartedly with this. I agree with your view on worship too, when I was young at C3 I used to love the balanced worship. It seemed to change and didn’t suit the over 40’s. There’s a time and a place for everything though and finding the balance is the key.

  284. @glitter girl – have you found since you left that any of your friends really care where you are going now? We have found that you are more to be pitied for leaving such a great church, and that no others in the area measure up.

    We were told recently that we were “sorely missed” and when we tried to tell them how happy and settled we were, the shutters went up and the glazed stare off into the distance took over for a moment, as they considered praying a prayer of deliverance over us. I’m not kidding, that’s what this person does.

  285. @Teddy, I really don’t have alot to do with anyone there on a personal level anymore. When I see people at school events etc we catch up, but I’ve found that because you’re not seeing each other regularly your “friends” go by the wayside. They know I go somewhere else but not interested. My true friends for life still keep in contact. I’m sure you and your family are missed by everyone but my circumstances saw the split of a family and that changes peoples perspectives even if you had no control. Moving on in hard, but there is light at the end of the tunnel, even if you have to squint to see it! ha ha

  286. “The pair of them dress like arts students from a second tier university – they’re profoundly narcissistic…… it’s so creepy.”

    If you saw me quote Paul Andrew while he was a youth pastor of Hillsong (at http://www.groupsects.wordpress.com), he talked about the future of pastors being innovative and creative leaders. When he spoke of what ‘a church leader’ is meant to be back then (2007?), Pastors started putting on this persona, and started writing about this new image of a leader. Phil Pringle touches on this also in his book, ‘You The Leader’. (And this could also explain Munsey’s creative approach to C3’s Presence Conference and dodgy Ed Young to his huckster rap at Hill$ong Conference this year.)

    Pringle is promoting his art college and has made them to only promote his movement now. They are definitely aiming to look like the cutting edge artist-designer. Phil Pringle talks about in you the leader how great leaders are creative.

    In fact, it’s not just Brian Houston and Pringle that are doing it either. I’m noting the trend in some emergent circles. I am no fan of leader wannabe’s or try-hards. Even Kong Hee went through an arty phase with the streaks in his hair, looking as though he was still a college student. Hehe!

    These types of pastors are too predictable and boring.They can’t be leaders if they are following the world.
    I even talked on this subject to a dear friend of mine in C3 leadership.

    I talked to him about how C3 and other pastors are playing this creative role to market their own people (brainwashing them) to stay put within the walls of religion. He saw where I was coming from.

    I’ve studied psychological behaviour tied to arts and advertising and have observed how church advertising has turned into corporate-company like advertising. They are really trying to win people to ‘Jesus’ through the arts. But they are using the tools of the enemy (manipulation, sensationalism and hype), to bind people to these illusions. These pastors have turned the church into THE market place and have no shame in doing so.

    I was just reading on brain washing the other day, and it fell into line with what Pringle talks about in his book ‘You the Leader’ and the Paul Andrew videos on groupsects. What this form of church marketing does is constantly re-enforce people that the leader knows where the church should be going and the church simply saying ‘yes’, as they step into the world the leader ‘makes’ for them. This has been the direction C3 has been going for a while now.

    Especially when you see confusing videos like this:

  287. Heretic informed me that brainwashing involves people to believe contradiction. The above video portrays patriotic, rosey and star-like wonderland where everyone is relatable, (especially Phil Pringle as you build with Him as a ‘Vision Builder’, God’s House.)

    But what is most interesting is the editing of the church members dialogue. Most of it seems quite meaningless and vague, yet the contradiction is glaring.
    I wrote out the transcript just then. Took me an hour:

    “God? I love Him! Aha!”
    “My love for God, I don’t think, could be measured.”
    “I think… it’s beyond words. It’s… it’s… unexplainable.”
    “It’s a very humbling thing for me to not have words to describe how I feel about Jesus. Because… you just can’t.”
    “You know the guy who actually created the universe.”
    “The fact that the one who made you actually speaks to you-“
    “- That Him that everything that He is, is in me and with me for eternity- I mean, you know. It doesn’t get much better than that.”
    “That’s amazing.”
    “All I’ve got to give people is Jesus.”
    “He’s absolutely sovereign, but responsive.”
    “His love is unending.”
    “To me there’s nothing else.”
    “Jesus is my life. Ehe!”
    Church for me is absolutely everything.”
    “Love the worship. Love the preaching. “
    “There’s a sense of belonging, sense of acceptance.”
    “Where else would you want to be?”
    “When I’m at church I feel… I feel in my element
    “Church is home.” [Light comes from above the head like a portal upon Hammond flashing to transition] “It’s the gateway to heaven. It’s where Christ is. It’s where his people are.”
    “It’s like the most… um… like… exhilarating experience!”
    “I just love walking into church and its home.”
    “My praise and worship with other people- I almost sense that I’m in heaven singing with angels. It’s amazing.”
    “This Sunday, people’s lives are gonna be changed.”
    “Church is a real place where we gather together to worship the one true God.”
    “I’m a part of something- as in this is a God thing.”
    “You can’t afford not to get to church every week.”
    “There’s so much to be missed if you’re just not there.”
    “And we got people from all nationalities and it’s just like we’re one big happy family and I love that. I love the unity.”
    “Church isn’t just a building, it’s us as a people as Christians, as believers.”
    “Following God is definitely a battle. I think suffering’s just a part of what it is.”
    “It’s a battle because people hate it.”
    “But it’s a good battle. It’s a battle worth fighting.”
    “There’s this and that that comes in the way and temptations and trials…”
    “In loving for God it’s not merely about convenience, it’s about the cross. It’s just that sometimes it’s hard. But ultimately it’s worth it.”
    “There’s a barrier that you need to break through-“
    “And then God comes into the picture-“
    “All that He does is what you can’t see.”
    “Every problem goes from a mountain to a molehill.”
    “It’s really His battle not our battle.”
    “And that’s a great battle to be part of because we are a part of the winning team.”
    “We’re in it but it’s over. It’s already been won.”
    “It’s His strength, it’s His word, it’s His blood, it’s His authority, it’s His house. And when you catch that, it actually becomes easy.”
    “There’s joy in the journey and there’s joy in the battle.”
    “- I’ve decided that if I am gonna do it, then I am going to do it with my whole heart and my whole life.”
    “You gotta give it everything! You can’t just give half your life! It’s your whole life!”
    “We can never give up.”
    “There are so many people out there hurting.”
    “There is such a sea of need out there.”
    “And you realize that we live in a broken humanity. A broken society.”
    “You wanna do something. You wanna help and you want people to know what you know.”
    “- that are going to release that love that God released into me into others.”
    “We, who have heard the good news, need to go out now and preach it to everyone else.”
    “The church has the answer and I believe that Jesus is the answer for every problem.”
    “Whether they’re lost or whether they’re found, they’re His children.”
    “I get the opportunity to represent Jesus in the community and that’s an incredible honour.”
    “We know truth that can transform those people’s lives. We’ve got a responsibility to share it.”
    “- Life after life. Just being radically turned upside down.”
    “The responsibility is definitely on us as a church as single believers to reach out to just one person.”
    Hammond: “We just need to do anything if it just means one person that’s coming to Christ.”
    “Bring them into church and let God do the rest.”
    “Nothing’s impossible for God.”
    “When they meet people, when they get connected, then how can they not be changed?”
    “When I see someone meet Christ, I light up on the inside.”
    “I think that’s the most exciting thing we can do.”
    “- Make this their home and make God their God.”
    “It’s not about me, nor about my efforts, my accomplishments or what I can achieve-“
    “Eternity is so much more then what we have here now.”
    “God is changing people’s lives every day.”
    “In whatever we do, we give God the glory.”
    “Being God’s hands and feet.”
    “It’s a new season! It’s a new day!”
    “I see leaders rising up. I see churches exploding ‘nd churches growing.”
    “I see it becoming a sanctuary and a place for people that are broken.”
    “It’s His presence scattered throughout the whole city.”
    “- We’ve seen connect groups grow. We’ve seen lives changed.”
    “We’re going out into the world. We’re preaching the gospel. We’re setting the captives free.”
    “- reaching out with love. Reaching out with answers.”
    “We’re not gonna see nothing happen. It’s not possible.”
    “We’ve just begun. We’ve literally just begun.”
    “I am going to run the race that God has marked out for me.”
    “I don’t want to waste my time. I think I’ve wasted enough time.”
    “It’s about knowing your place and taking your place.”
    “Whether you’ve been here thirty years or five minutes, God can use you.”
    “I’ll be the last one there if everybody else leaves. That’s how I fell.”
    “- And so if we can be just one part of that-“
    Hammond: “- It’s just us being Christ and realizing who we are, what we have, Who are Father is- When we carry that, I mean- we’re unstoppable.”
    – Vision Builders 2010, Promotion, http://www.c3churchglobal.com/video/vision-builders-2010, 7/06/10

    As you can see the dialogue engages the heart and fills you with pointless stuff.

  288. Churchman, glittergirl et al

    its wrong because it is exclusive, and God is not faith in Jesus apart and what He has done for us.

    Nothing wrong with focussed ministry and evangelism, but to exclude people based on age, race, sex I would say is very dangerous. It separates, does not teach respect, and a faith shared with all.

    The elderly have lived it and have very valuable perspectives which are valuable to those of us that are younger.

    Don’t have enough time, and without having a good look at the detail my biblical reaction is that to exclude older people is wrong and not what God intended.

    If I get a chance to read back later I may change what I’ve just written.

  289. Liked hearing your thoughts on churches with all generations interacting, churchman and glittergal.

    I now think church should be like a healthy family, which definitely includes all generations, who can all benefit from mixing with one another, and to encourage too much segregation is unhelpful. Now they even seem to be separating the home groups into male and female – again, mostly unnecessary, though I don’t begrudge there being a men’s or women’s ministry with associated events. Likewise, why separate the marrieds from the singles all the time, or the young from the old? People will gravitate towards friends of their own age, and youth groups, mum’s groups etc can be helpful, but not if that then eliminates greater mixing as an overall community.

    Churchman: Leaving as a married couple worked well for Heretic and I, since we agreed about it all. He would have happily left sooner than me, but at the same time, we’d prayed about it and felt to stay for the relationships, and to fulfill other service commitments we’d made for a defined time. However, we did define a time to leave, and in the end, physical illness brought it forward by a few weeks, but that was all. Unity is important to us in our marriage, and neither of us would have insisted on leaving while the other still wanted to go. Neither of us would have wanted to stay either, had attending simply become untenable for the other.

    I’ve had a number of other married friends leave the same place. (Distinct cultural change can have that effect!) Some were like us where both agreed. There were two other cases where they left because the wife could no longer stand it for some reason. In those cases, it was an act of love for their wife by each of the husbands, and not at all resented. Three couples found new churches. Us and one other couple chose not to. All couples were united in their decisions to go. I know of one couple who have split and one is not attending, but there were other non-church related factors in that. I know of other couples where the husband and wife feel quite differently about how things are going, but are not at the point where attending is driving them mad.

    In my experience, the couples I am friends with would predominantly seek a church that suits both of them, and would not stay if one of them became extremely unhappy with things.

    Glittergal, I have found the same as you, and my ‘lifetime friends’ remain regardless of what church we attend. Some of mine have survived both my church moves. It is good.

    In moving, I have also found new friends though, and I do believe that if we ask Him, God will provide for our needs in this area, as in all others, over time.

  290. One funny thing about leaving as a married couple was that I got the impression that one or two of the leaders felt sorry for me, as I was just being submissive to Heretic. Reality was, we were in truthful unity.

  291. Mosco with reference to my post at 10:28 Pm on 26/9/10 I’ve had a look at the “teaching about righteousness” phrase in Heb 5:12.

    Robert Mounce says the word for righteousness is dikaiosyne the renderings of which through a number of verses are: 1. fair and equitable dealing; justice 2. integrity, virtue 3. generosity, alms 4. Piety, godliness 5. investiture with the attribute of righteousness, acceptance as righteous, justification 6. an instance of justification

    In respect of your question:

    “What is the “milk” referred to by the author of Hebrews and ist it as TVdude has asserted: “But remember, as Paul wrote to the Hebrews, we need to move on from the “milk” (the gospel) and onto solid food. If all every preacher ever did was to preach Christ and Him crucified then we as a church would still be babes spiritually. It is imperative that we discover the depth of God’s Word and grow in spiritual maturity by teaching and learning about the fullness of Christ.”

    the writer of Hebrews states that those being fed milk are not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness, and that meat is for the mature who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil (overtones of the Garden – my comment).

    What does the “mature” refer to?

    The greek word for maturity is teleios which Mounce renders in different places as: 1. completion; fully accomplished; fully developed 2. fully realised, thorough 3. complete, entire as opposed to what is partial and limited 4. full grown ripe of age 5, fully accomplished in Christian enlightenment.

    Maturity in Heb 6:1 (teleiotes) is rendered as completeness, perfectness, and in Colossians as ripeness of knowledge or practice.

    So therefore while I agree with the tenor of your sources about the centrality of the Gospel, and without wanting to diminish that in anyway, I think I would go along TVD’s direction.

    What I mean by that I think the meat that is consumed by the mature is that which perfects our relationship with God over time, and the spiritual disciplines that come with that – spoken of thru Heb 11 – 13 and heaps of places elsewhere.

    My take without doing a full study on righteousness, is what that refers to is that which re-establishes firstly our relationship with God, and secondly fully living and being a fully fledged participant in the actual relationship itself as a grown up fully cognisant person, rather than a dependent, language lorn babe, and all that God intended for us in that.

    Consider I fall way short of it, but that would be my take on it.

    Cheers

  292. @MN – No good job, indepth thought – just one thing with regard your comment

    “I think the meat that is consumed by the mature is that which perfects our relationship with God over time, and the spiritual disciplines that come with that”

    Would you say that our relationship or right standing with God is not instantaneous upon conversion but is more progressive with cooperation with God’s helping grace?

  293. Difference between two old fashioned words – justification and sanctification.

    Our status and standing before God is “instantaneous” from a salvation viewpoint if you like, but the relationship and the richness of – for us at least – should develop over time to the extent that we practice those things we ought to and put the work in. I am not trying to push a “works” line here.

    The writer to the Hebrews whinge was that they hadn’t even got the basics right, and hadn’t moved onwards and upwards. Same with 1 Cor 3.

  294. But why are you so afraid of works? Surely the righteous are called to good works, and are unable to enter into them until we are saved by grace through faith.

  295. RP, thanks for the long answer. So you are a raving pentecostal married to a heretic? Interesting to see how your kids will turn out! I really liked your testimony of how you found each other (or God brought you together) on the other thread too.

    mn and mosco, your discussion reminds me of how words like righteousness, sanctification, propitiation cause headaches for people translating the bible into languages with limited vocabularies. Think about the Wycliffe guys.

  296. AC – not afraid of works at all – Book of James and all that.

    Those who are saved are called to works, and in our pure state God ordained that we work. I believe we have a fair bit of latitude in that, but at the same time any work that is not of God is dust.

    While there are those who teach we don’t have to do anything at all once saved, my experience across a broad range of churchianity is that then tendency is to add something to the Gospel in order for us to cut it – to provide us a convenient box or work we can tick. Works are often used as a bargaining tool with God as well.

    Paul said it of himself – we add our own things – tithing, baptism, tongues, circumcision, who we follow – Paul or Apollos, being a missionary, elder or pastor, wearing pin socks with polkadots on Tuesdays. They can be good things in and of themselves, but we are experts into turning something which might on a good day part of a good work, into something that is not.

    That is what I am wary of, and I am aware we can be equally guilty of not doing what God called us to do as much doing something which He didn’t.

  297. Churchman

    yeah they are old words that I don’t much hear anymore, when they were quite the norm in my circles, especially when the KJV was in large use

  298. The older I get, the more important I realise that sanctification work is.

    Does anyone here understand what Watchman Nee says about overcoming sin? I can’t quite get it, but Heretic likes it.

    Churchman – I am probably really just ‘charismatic’ these days, as is Heretic. (Can’t remember what the difference between Pentecostal and Charismatic is right now.) He is ‘Heretic’ because he so vehemently disagrees with some of the things which once seemed sacred in our past Pente churches.

    He was once very into Word of Faith, a la Kenneth Copeland. I only picked up Phil Pringle’s version, which was pretty much Yonggi Cho. Never quite went the whole way there, as I had the experience while wanting to pray for certain things, of not being able to, when I felt the Holy Spirit was actually directing me not to. Despite friends insisting that had I enough faith, I could pray whatever. Anyway… a long time ago. My Anglican roots seemed to act as an anchor against some of the Pente extremes. I am ‘raving’ about the excesses of the Pente churches, which as for many others here, grieve me, because amongst many reasons we have a real love for the people there and – it could have been so good! (And obviously it is distressing when you realise clear lies are being taught as though Jesus endorses them.)

    I do believe there were choices made by some of those leaders which have led to the current situation, and had they been willing to accept input from other parts of the body of Christ, rather than hold themselves up as alive and everyone else as ‘dead’ – some of these excesses could have been avoided. Better stop there…

  299. It was important to make sure that you distinguished between good works which result from salvation, as opposed to good works which some cults claim lead to salvation.

    There is a difference. Teaching that a godly action will lead to a godly outcome isn’t a wrong assertion Biblically, unless it is connected to works that lead to salvation, and not works that result in a beneficial outcome.

  300. Pingback: australian cricket
  301. Goodness, I’m glad that era is over. What a thread! So much angst! Lord help us grow up! I hope TVDude got over the lambasting he took. Ouch!

    Anyhow, the opening post declares, ‘To even a casual outside observer it would appear that the latest fad to sweep through the Christian church centers around Leadership.’

    Well leadership teaching isn’t a ‘fad’ at all. It is, and always has been, an essential ingredient in Church life and development.

    In fact, the quoted post gives a completely wrong impression of leadership conferences in general. Probably the author has never been to one, I’d say. Or if he has, he’s been there with a critical outlook.

    I’ve been to many leadership conferences over the years and always found them helpful and inspiring. They’re not based, as the post claims, on Fortune 500 principles or a business model at all. There may be some similarities in some areas, but that is coincidental. I think the claim, actually, is that some business models imitate Christian principles.

    For example, I was in a conference centre one time where the event I was attending had ended, and the Baptists were in the same complex starting their convention with Bill Hybels as the main speaker, so I was allowed access to a couple of sessions.

    The subjects he covered discussed churches growing from smaller entities to mid size and then to large churches and the demands involved in managing the changes, especially regarding staffing issues.

    This is very important to church leaders who are desiring with all their heart to allow for growth whilst at the same time wanting to serve and minister to the congregation members who have been through the smaller times as well as the increasing times. These can be transitional events with risks involved which can be alleviated if the correct information is available.

    The best advice comes via those who have been through the processes. I know someone will say that we should go to God and the Word for this information, and I add that as a qualification, but it is still true that those who lead churches can learn from others, and, in fact, they lack wisdom if they do not seek actively to do so.

    Secondly, leaders meeting with other leaders creates an atmosphere for inspiration and goal setting. It can also be helpful to those who are going through a tough time to receive assistance and encouragement.

    Whether you like his ministry or not, Kong Hee has been and remains a very successful and influential leader of one of the largest churches on the planet. It was an immensely brave and honourable move by Phil Pringle to support Kong through a crisis. Kong considered Phil Pringle to be his pastor, and Phil has not turned his back on him during a challenging time, but fully supported him, despite immense criticism.

    Meanwhile City Harvest continues to grow, and hold great conferences which inspire many.

    Recently, in London, Hillsong filled the O2 complex, which seats 18k people. Their leadership conference is impacting Europe. Again, you may not like this, but we’re talking about the Church in action. We’re seeing amazing growth, especially amongst young adults, worldwide. This should be an exciting factor for us.

    Leadership conferences help pastors and leaders grow personally so that they have a greater capacity for their churches. It is an exponential process.

    Leadership conferences help develop today’s leaders and the leaders who will take their mantle. It is healthy for the Church to be so active, and rather than dismiss conferences as a ‘fad’ we should celebrate the growing increase in major leadership events.

    Out of them come the leaders who will follow and usher in the next generation!

  302. ”Out of them come the leaders who will follow and usher in the next generation!”

    Full marks Steve for your unswerving belief that this model best examples Christ to the world. Allow me to put a modern, leadership-driven church spin on an exchange between Jesus and Peter:

    Jesus: Peter, you were going to be my main man for the first years of church expansion, yet you keep denying me, You’re just not on board. Clearly you have a problem with my leadership and vision so it’s probably best if you find another messiah. There’s quite a few to choose from, you know, mostly in the desert.

  303. I think your analogy is more reflective of Judas.

    Peter, who was still a learner, a novice right up until the time Jesus called him to Pastor His Church had qualities which demonstrated his dedication to Jesus and his cause. A leader can build on these qualities regardless of the candidate’s weaknesses. Peter had the character, after he was filled with the Spirit, to become a courageous Apostle.

    Notice that Jesus called and separated Peter to feed his sheep and lambs as a Pastor.

    Notice also that Jesus knew beforehand that Peter would deny him three times before he was crucified. He was already identifying Peter’s needs as a future leader as well as his potential.

    He already knew he would eventually come good, because, after Jesus was raised, and the Holy Ghost fell on them all at Pentecost, Peter was the first to stand up and preach the gospel under the direction and influence of the Holy Ghost. He took the lead, identifying immediately what was happening.

    Context!

  304. My point, Steve, as I am sure you recognised, was that Jesus continued to bring out the best in Peter even allowing him to be a key leader in the formative church despite having been dismissed as satan and denying Jesus at his critical moment. How many earthly leaders have cut folk away for less?

    Also, these church leadership conventions and group gatherings perpetuate one thing – more leaders. It seems that the foremost task of a leader is to groom and grow more leaders not focus fully on the flock. All this does is populate a burgeoning leadership strata when real, authentic eldership is grown from within the body of believers organically. Moreover, youth leadership is awash with youngsters who barely know their arse from their elbow lording it over others. Its an infectious disease in the church I’m sorry to say.

  305. Umm, it isn’t the leaders fault if individuals don’t step up to the plate and take responsibility in the church and community.

    It isn’t the congregations fault if leaders don’t give opportunities to serve and discourage participation by the members.

    If we sit back and watch others “do church” on the platform, then we are as guilty as the leaders who prevent our participation, aren’t we?

    If one group is marginalised, the whole body is at fault …

    Don’t accept the status quo. God has a better plan.

    Shalom

  306. Well Jesus seems to have focussed on his leadership team and the flock.

    I think you’re completely wrong. Leaders develop new blood from the flock, but you can’t do that without knowing the flock.

    Leaders naturally surface, and need to be correctly utilised. It is ‘organic’ if you want to use that term, but it is mostly spiritual gifting.

    Again, your comments seem cynical.

  307. It seems that the foremost task of a leader is to groom and grow more leaders not focus fully on the flock. All this does is populate a burgeoning leadership strata when real, authentic eldership is grown from within the body of believers organically.

    Well put. Not an issue in every church, but certainly the focus on leadership is strong these days. So many people serve with the hope of being ‘lifted up’ one day, too – they are even reminded of this, so that they are patient. As if being ‘raised’ to leadership is the reward.

    Jesus is our reward.

  308. Well, I suppose grain free cat food is a cut above some of the other ‘free’ advertising that lands on these threads. My cat might even enjoy a trial tin or two. Or perhaps I’m being naive and it’s a link to some Nazi regalia sadomasochistic site.

    Anyway, it brings up a point Steve made above: ”Tell me. Hw did Jesu chose his disciples? What stands out?”

    What stands out is that Jesus knew who would respond when he called them to follow him. In picking his inner core team of 12, he did so after a night of prayer. This is in stark contrast to today, whereby you generally have to exhibit years of consistent support to the ‘movement’, its values and beliefs, and the leadership structure above you before being given something akin to leadership responsibility.

    The drive to call the youngest of these folk ‘leaders under training’ (often because they are the ‘movements’ loudest cheer-leaders), to me makes a mockery of Body life. It is church growth by business means ie lifting people into ‘offices’ and titles rather than gently nurture their character into that of Christ simply by being around those of greater maturity. It’s like, if we don’t have a program, or leadership development stream, or leadership conferences, we won’t be taken seriously (because that’s how big business does it) and folk will get bored and drift away. All wrong thinking, but so prevalant, especially in ‘movements’.

  309. Well, there was a process, zeibart.

    First, he prayed, as you said, then he chose and called them to follow him. He trained them as disciples. He sent them out in twos empowering them to minister. He anointed them as apostles. Finally he breathed on them with the Holy Spirit and sent them out, but told them to wait in Jerusalem until he had ascended and the Holy Spirit had come to them to empower them.

    He didn’t say ‘follow me’, and they were immediately apostles!

    So it is in churches. People are carefully prepared for the work of the ministry. It is the job of the pastor, amongst others, to tech and train people. As Paul says, we are not to place novices in positions of oversight. Their character, call and the grace on their lives has to be carefully examined and nurtured.

  310. Luke 6:12′ Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. 13 And when it was day, He called His disciples to Himself; and from them He chose twelve whom He also named apostles:’

    would seem to be at odds with your comment: ” He didn’t say ‘follow me’, and they were immediately apostles!” Jesus calling and designating the 12 appears very early in his ministry. I agree that character has to be examined (and Paul lays out the template for this to Timothy), but this does not happen in a scriptural way in most charismatic churches. Here, it is your support for the leadership and church’s teachings which are the key factors.

    I don’t know what you mean by ‘call and grace’. There is no such thing as a ‘call’ per se. And ‘grace’? What is that when used toward a specific person? Is there somehow measures of God’s grace upon his people? No verses come to mind to support that idea.

  311. Jesus was with his disciples for three and a half years teaching and training them before he released them. He told them to go nowhere until they were endowed with power from on high.

    I don’t know why you are so reluctant to admit that disciples need to be training before they are sent out as leaders. Of course we are all immediately able t witness to others, but I thought we were discussing oversight.

    Paul talks about being called to be an apostle, and about the grace given for it. We are all called, and we all have a measure of grace.

    Romas 12
    4* For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function,
    5* so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.
    6* Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith;
    7* or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching;
    8* he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

    I don’t understand your inability to go along with so many things which are understood aspects of Christian service. You resist issues which are long understood as Biblically sound terminology.

    Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began… 2 Tim.1:8-9

  312. In Romans 4:6, I would suggest that Paul is referring to a range of gifts, but poured out from the same limitless ocean of grace. Verse 6 would be the key to differing levels of use which is due to our faith, not God’s issuing of the gift. The labelling of certain gifts as ‘grace gifts’ (not your term, but I have heard them called such regularly) is incorrect because it implies that God had been more gracious to the one gifted than to another not gifted. God’s grace is equal for all who believe.

    The essential aspect here is that a variety of gifts, employed to different levels of faith, are to be worked together in one seamless body. Is that your experience of church life, Steve, because it’s not mine?

    My ‘inability to go along with so many things which are understood aspects of Christian service’ is because the environment in which they are occasionally expressed is limited to a few (maybe even just the pastor), so I get genuinely upset by what faith the 90% may have to exercise their gift being snubbed or never encouraged – week in week out.

    As to training disciples, again, C3 and many many others have a modern business-moulded mental construct of how this should look. Why don’t we do it the biblical way? Because very few leaders want 1-20 people hanging around their house soaking up all the minutiae of their lives. But that is what a disciple does – he spends his waking day with his mentor. Many years ago I requested much closer access to my pastor to learn from him and it lasted precisely one meeting. The busyness of his life took over. So to say the disciples received 3.5 years ‘training’, as if they were in seminary, before being released is distorted. Jesus called them early in his ministry and let them loose on Israel well before Pentecost. In fact, if we were truly being disciples of Jesus we would be spending all our time with him and not pandering to men in the hope that they might ‘release’ me sometime. In which cae I really would need training in the pure sense of the word; Godly men would recognise Christ in me and facilitate more opportunities for that expression. Today we think we have to have a program to teach me ‘how to lead’; a cart before the horse result if ever there was one.

    As you can see, my ‘resistance to sound biblical terminology’ is only because that terminology supports a man-centric hierarchy, and so is not actually sound at all. Sadly the sheer weight of tradition and accepted interpretation makes it very difficult for those locked into ‘church-as-we-know’ to think according to our earliest scriptural role models.

  313. Well, you clearly have your own construct of how this should look, but that would be like the disciple deciding the teacher doesn’t know as much as the learner, wouldn’t it?

    You wanted to learn in a certain way but the pastor had set up another model which you do not like. So who is going to lose out there, do you think?

    In my experience, and reading the Bible, the disciple doesn’t generally learn on his own terms.

    You’ve also added in your experience of discipleship which isn’t mine, and based our discussion on the issues and terminology you have difficulties with, which means you’re arguing against the system you find yourself in and not discussing discipleship issues with me.

    That’s fine, and hopefully will help you locate the correct pathway in God’s will for your life, but it seems to me that if you’re prepared to split hairs over the definitions of words like ‘call’ and ‘grace’, which are totally Biblical, you are going to get bogged down and miss the point.

    It seems you are more concerned with getting your model up an running whilst still a novice rather than entering the vineyard and getting down to the hard work of producing a crop.

    Once you have experience, have planted a church, started a ministry and have disciples of your own you can begin the process of utilising your model.

    Until then I suggest you get your head down and work on Jesus’ team any way you can to build the Church.

  314. ”Until then I suggest you get your head down and work on Jesus’ team any way you can to build the Church.”

    I don’t mean to be rude Steve, but exactly what do you know I am up to to make something of a judgement call on my life? Did you intend on condescension or was it an accident?

    ”Once you have experience, have planted a church, started a ministry and have disciples of your own you can begin the process of utilising your model.”

    Again, thanks for the advice. It illustrates neatly how differently we think church should look. My ‘model’ would not contemplate all that busyness for God. It’s man-made empire-building in all honesty.

  315. If you have your head down, well and good, but if you are in the middle ground between Viola and the rest you will be mired down with confusion, which is the effect he has unless you completely adopt his model, by which time you will have such a disgust for the rest of the Body you will be entering the cultishmess of his ideology.

  316. Easy tiger! Cultish mess of his ideology is a bold and sweeping statement, and one which a vast swathe of theology and scripture actually stands in your way. In all seriousness, Steve, you would do well to reassess your heart towards what Viola and others are putting forward.

    But then, those who believe they are doing a good (God) thing in Babylon will wail the loudest when God brings the entire spiritual edifice down (Rev 18). Come out of her my people is his cry to those who have ears to hear.

  317. Oh, and God does not look on those participating in Babylonian lifestyles with disgust, and nor would I dream to either. It is a pure desire to see them free to live completely according to his leading that drives his heart cry in verse 4 of Rev 18.

  318. ”which means you’re arguing against the system you find yourself in and not discussing discipleship issues with me.”

    Well, since your ‘movement’ is in the system (from which I have, thankfully, extricated myself), arguing against it equals discussing these issues with you.

    I said, ”The essential aspect here is that a variety of gifts, employed to different levels of faith, are to be worked together in one seamless body. Is that your experience of church life, Steve, because it’s not mine?”

    Well, is it, or would you argue that we should not be experiencing this in our believing community meetings?

  319. So you’re already in there, then! You see how you have a disgust for the rest of the Body already. That’s what I mean by cultishness!

    I’m not saying it is a cult, or you are in a cult, but it carries at least one characteristic of cults, which is to tend to dismiss any other system but their own as the Babylon system, which you have already done!

    Now you claim I am part of this system. On what basis? On the basis of a preconception by association.

    You know, I used to comment here anonymously precisely because people tend to box you in, and, as you have seen with Anonymous recently, go an all-out assault, if any associations are known or even perceived.

    Don’t get me wrong, I do the same, and it’s understandable, so I’m not saying it is necessarily wrong. But you have constantly decried any commentary I make because of a perceived understanding of what I believe based on a premise someone else surmised on this blog long ago, which, it may surprise you to know, I have never denied or confirmed.

    I write something which is my own thought, then you respond with a perception of what I should think based on your view of some associated view, which may or may not be my view.

    You don’t engage me on my writings, but on the position of the group you assume me to be of, and the position you assume I hold.

    When I do the same to you, i.e., by connecting you with Viola, you are naturally upset, because you probably have a view which empathetic but somewhat removed from the totality of Viola’s theology, an ideology which I consider to have some merits but also has some dangerous errors, and tends to produce division rather than unity, to which we are all called.

    I gave a viewpoint above, which was mine alone, but which, in two comments, you converted to a perceived view and argued against that, which is why I say you have not argued with me, but with a self-constructed assumption, and is exactly the reason it is better to discuss things anonymously at times.

    However there is something dishonest about anonymity on a blog when it comes to criticism of another idea, so I am taking the risk of being stereotyped by association, but asking you to not second guess what I may or may not think and then argue against your own guess as if I hold that view.

  320. OK, Steve, fair enough. I won’t take any of your comments as representative of C3 or its ilk. However, you have expressed considerable support for PP and the ‘movement’, on many occasions in the past. From now on I’ll take everything you write as purely personal and leave C3 out of it unless you want to make a point advocating that denomination.

  321. “You know, I used to comment here anonymously precisely because people tend to box you in, and, as you have seen with Anonymous recently, go an all-out assault […]”

    Come on, Steve! That wasn’t anything like an all-out assault, that was just a little light sparring – I was just warming up.

    If I’d gone on an all-out assault you’d be theological road-kill 😉

  322. Steve, I have answered that at 12.56pm. Anyway, you have not answered my simple query 7.58pm. Over to you.

  323. “Why don’t we do it the biblical way? Because very few leaders want 1-20 people hanging around their house soaking up all the minutiae of their lives. But that is what a disciple does – he spends his waking day with his mentor. ”

    I think that’s a great idea, and very biblical. If you can find someone like that who you respect I it would be ideal. Some church plants start that way – esp in mission field situations.

    it sounds radical, and in most church situations – esp established church situations it isn’t done. And what you said about leaders praying is true too. Leaders need to spend more time in prayer before choosing other leaders. Maybe if they did there’d be less troubles in church life. I can remember so many times when a Pastor would choose someone into leadership and I just knew there was going to be trouble – and there was to the point of church splits. Sadly, some Pastors have very poor discernment, and are too easily taken in by initial showings of loyalty and commitment.

    All I’d say is Zeibart that these things are all easier said than done. If you do find a mentor situation, hopefully you will be able to make yourself open and available in the future too.

    But – people have wives and kids and most need to have some time apart.

    Some churches aren’t big on the bible college system, and others would consider a C3, AOG pastoral training system to be woefully inadequate.

    It’s all relative.

  324. “I used to comment here anonymously precisely because people tend to box you in,”

    Anonymity is good. People should argue the point instead of arguing against a persons position or affiliation.

  325. Paul set Timothy to a church of several thousand at Ephesus. I don’t think he used the same model you’re talking about to nurture leaders.

    I think we have to be careful not to make doctrines out of one off situations. Each opportunity produces its own challenges. Developing future leaders will always be about character, faithfulness and faith.

    Even those who were chosen to wait on tables in Acts were full of faith and the Holy Spirit. The situation produced a new opportunity to be faced and decisions made.

    God gives grace for the task of those he calls to work on it, including the anointing. Not everyone was called to do what Paul did, for instance.

  326. “I think we have to be careful not to make doctrines out of one off situations.”

    yeah, good post Steve. Actually I was going to add that there are stages in the life of a church. Most movements start off full of passion and ideals and wanting to get back to the book of Acts! And they look with disdain at established churches. Well todays cutting edge, super radical, change the world house church with no structures often in a few decades is big and just can’t function the way it used to. (Or maybe it can, but nobody stays the same way.

    “Except for where its about gays or women speaking in the the church.”

    The explorer never gives up! lol

  327. I also wonder if the Zeibarts of this world think the way they do because they’re suited for pioneering work/missions etc.

    Think/pray about it Mr Zeibart.

    Just remember there are also lots of casualties there too.

    You only need two or three to have division!

  328. ”So you’re already in there, then! You see how you have a disgust for the rest of the Body already. That’s what I mean by cultishness!”

    What a ridiculous deliberately inflammatory comment. You do talk some pious stuff Steve and then shoot yourself in the foot in comprehensive fashion.

  329. OK, but no less inflammatory than ‘those who believe they are doing a good (God) thing in Babylon will wail the loudest when God brings the entire spiritual edifice down (Rev 18). Come out of her my people is his cry to those who have ears to hear’, to which it was (a tongue in cheek) response. I see you dislike presumption and overreaction as much as I.

    Besides, we subsequently resolved the exaggeration issue. I hope.

  330. Greg the Occupier?

    Steve and Zeibart, regardless of your disagreements, you’ve reminded me that I think we need more mentors. I don’t have one and wish I did. But my problem is that I am so contrary and think I know everything so I can’t think of a good mentor who I could really trust.

    Yep…you don’t have to tell me…

  331. ”Paul set Timothy to a church of several thousand at Ephesus. I don’t think he used the same model you’re talking about to nurture leaders.”

    I don’t understand your point here. To be perfectly clear, the model I am talking about is simply this: the less mature in Christ spending most of their waking day with the more mature in Christ – that’s what happened between Jesus and his disciples. They learned on-the-job with the Teacher. No need for psychological training, or social welfare courses, how to conduct meetings, or financial governance, or how to plan meetings or leading worship.

    So you seem to be suggesting Timothy or Paul did not use this technique and that the style Jesus chose was ‘one-off’ and so we can’t build a template from it. Of Paul’s time in Ephesus Acts 19:8-10 says, ”And he went into the synagogue and spoke boldly for three months, reasoning and persuading concerning the things of the kingdom of God. 9 But when some were hardened and did not believe, but spoke evil of the Way before the multitude, he departed from them and withdrew the disciples, reasoning daily in the school of Tyrannus. 10 And this continued for two years, so that all who dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks.”

    So he withdrew from the synagogue with the disciples and taught daily. In Acts 20:17-20 we read, ”From Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church. 18 And when they had come to him, he said to them: “You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you, 19 serving the Lord with all humility, with many tears and trials which happened to me by the plotting of the Jews; 20 how I kept back nothing that was helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and from house to house,”

    So Paul ‘lived among’ them and taught ‘from house to house’. Is that not exactly what Jesus did? At some point the Ephesian church had clearly descended into error and a degree of chaos, so Paul charged Timothy to assist in its restoration. Primarily he wanted Timothy to ensure the Godly character of the elders and deacons so that they could shepherd effectively, and to straighten out any doctrinal issues that had become part of church life there.

    It’s not quite the same as today’s landscape of dangling leadership as ‘first amongst equals’ as opposed to Paul’s declaration of how true Christian leadership be perceived in 1 Cor 4:9-13, ”For it seems to me that God has put us apostles on display at the end of the procession, like those condemned to die in the arena. We have been made a spectacle to the whole universe, to angels as well as to human beings. 10 We are fools for Christ, but you are so wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are honoured, we are dishonoured! 11 To this very hour we go hungry and thirsty, we are in rags, we are brutally treated, we are homeless. 12 We work hard with our own hands. When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it; 13 when we are slandered, we answer kindly. We have become the scum of the earth, the garbage of the world—right up to this moment.”

    To be in Christian ‘leadership’ in Roman times was to literally put your life on the line for Christ and your fellow believers. I don’t see that topic as the keynote address at the next leadership conference.

  332. ”God gives grace for the task of those he calls to work on it, including the anointing.”

    God gives grace for salvation (Titus 2:11) and the Holy Spirit dispenses gifts as he wills (if that is what you mean by ‘the anointing’).

    That not all were called to do what Paul did is not so much a sign of different levels of grace but more that we are not all supposed to be eyes or ears. Each has a part to play.

    Back to my (consistently avoided) question. Do you see, Steve, the entire congregation/Body expressing the gifts of the Spirit for mutual encouragement and edification so that all are built up into the image of Christ every week (and in between times ideally)?

    If not, isn’t something fundamental missing in your expression of church?

  333. SM, we are in the same situation today that Paul bemoaned nearly 2000 years ago to the Corinthian church (1 Cor 4:15). Namely that many purport to teach about Christ but there were so few fathers in the faith; ie those with doctrinal consistency who could reason from the depths of scripture with a Godly heart, who the young disciples could emulate and seek guidance from. We need to pray for fathers in our believing communities to reclaim a voice and let them be heard, to replace the all-too-common candy floss messages that God wants you to enjoy nothing but the best today (as judged by what benchmarks?) wrapped in sugar-coated self-help speak.

  334. Zeibart, I think your model is valid. It’s the practicality that’s difficult.

    Three months with Jesus or Paul 24/7 would be better than 3 years in a bible college – I agree.

  335. Do you really think leaders don’t spend quality time with people they are discipling? Bible school is only one aspect of training.

    Excellent study you’ve done there, and I would have to agree with what you’re saying on the whole, but the part about this isn’t happening in churches is strange, and where we depart. We don’t live in the first century Middle East, although in some places it doesn’t seem to have changed much. We live in a far different world, albeit with many of the same issues and problems, but things like communications and transport have moved along significantly, giving us new tools to utilise, in the developed world, at least.

    We are able to reach far more people simultaneously than Jesus did, and he was aware of this, because he said it was expedient that he go so that he could send the Holy Spirit to fill all believers and empower us all for the work of the ministry.

    We do need to adapt some of our methodology to the times we live in without compromising the Word, but I think you have a far too dismissive view of how new believers are brought through to maturity, which always has been, ad remains, through mentorship, or one to one discipleship.

    The other stuff on grace, call and anointing is hair splitting. God gives grace for salvation, but he also gives grace to empower us for service. Paul said he was called to be an apostle by the grace of God, for instance.

  336. ”the part about this isn’t happening in churches is strange”

    I can only give you what I have observed and experienced. Perhaps if I had conformed more to the norms of the church constructs I attended, rather than see them at odds with the bible, I would not have had the issues and problems I experienced. In other words, I would have been welcomed into the leadership fold as opposed to been regarded as not being of their camp. But I’m one of many thousands in that category, so it’s of no concern.

    ”Do you really think leaders don’t spend quality time with people they are discipling?”

    I would argue that it is extremely rare, but no doubt does happen. It’s more than connect groups.

  337. Probably not a nice thing to say, but this guys eyes and facial expressions make him seem crazy.

    But he’s famous so I guess a lot of people like him. Just seems … like he needs medication to me. Wild eyes.

  338. He looks like Elton John, and he comes across like someone who has been smoking or sniffing something illicit.

    And he should buy himself a comb.

  339. “The idea of separating children from worship and sermon is what has led I think in part to the decline in biblical literacy and church attendance by gen y’ers.”

    The bigger problem is the separating of *God* from worship and sermon…

  340. So we started a reasonable discussion on church structure, and it’s degenerated once again into attacks on various ministries, some of which have had entire feature posts.

    Perry Noble, Ed Young, and the list will gradually lengthen.

    I really don’t see the point of it.

  341. ”it’s degenerated once again into attacks on various ministries;;

    Would you prefer it degenerated in some other way, Steve?

    Honestly, I suppose the point is to illustrate how sharp the teeth are of some of the most popular wolves.

  342. Steve, that was probably my fault. Just thinking out loud. But seeing some Pastors in action is a shock to the system sometimes.

    I still maintain that you should be able to have the Pastor present and speak in such a way that you can let your 8 yr old kid or 80 yr old grandmother listen to them.

    Is that too much to ask?

  343. Steve, that was probably my fault. Just thinking out loud. But seeing some Pastors in action is a shock to the system sometimes.

    I still maintain that you should be able to have the Pastor present and speak in such a way that you can let your 8 yr old kid or 80 yr old grandmother listen to them.

    Is that too much to ask?

    One of the tools pastor’s use is the shock and awe tactic. Look how edgy I am. See I can act like a tool and be a pastor too.

    If I want to watch a MA rated performance I go to the movies or get a dvd out.

  344. “I still maintain that you should be able to have the Pastor present and speak in such a way that you can let your 8 yr old kid or 80 yr old grandmother listen to them.

    Is that too much to ask?”

    Would Jesus have ever spoken in an inappropriate manner in the presence of children or the elderly (or anyone else, for that matter)?

  345. “Perry Noble, Ed Young, and the list will gradually lengthen.”

    Of course the list can lengthen – that’s simply a reflection of how many of today’s “pastors” and “leaders” are simply narcissistic brain-dead losers who don’t have a clue about anything at all, whether within the church or without.

    These pompous preening pretenders wouldn’t last for five minutes in a real job.

  346. lol. that’s why I’m not interested in them saying they are CEOs when it comes to salary packages, and I wish they wouldn’t think they can give business advice.

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  349. I’m surprised this isn’t being updated….he’s been arrested!
    And in Singapore that’s not a light thing.

  350. btw, I must just be getting old. Kong says
    “”you give until your heart is broken, you give until tears stream down your eyes”

    and the money is used to finance his wife who produces songs like “China Wine”?
    I don’t see the connection. I really don’t.

  351. Just saw that Phil Pringle is in Singapore to defend Kong. Seems it was all about money used to support Crossover Ministry – using her music to reach people. Amazing that they needed 20,000 a month for a house though.

  352. Her “music”? China Wine is gospel set to music? Have to watch it again. Not to mention the Kill Bill rip off song. Why didn’t someone think of this before?

    That’s right, nothing new under the sun. ACDC’s “Highway To Hell” done to death at Perry Noble’s (because God told him to) Newspring Church.

    Where is the report about PP defending Kong Hee?

  353. “Where is the report about PP defending Kong Hee?”

    Just put in Phil Pringle Kong Hee. Unfortunately, most non-Christians in the world didn’t know Kong Hee, Sun Hee or Phil Pringe…. or concepts like “Crossover Ministry”, but this is all proving to be this generations Christian embarrassment.

    If you want to see the effectiveness of spending millions to promote a Pastor’s wife to sing songs, become famous, and then bring people to Christ, just read what the target market are saying now.

    Lots of people talking about 23million of offering being used to make soft-porn mediocre music.

    They’ve just given Muslim parents the world over another 23 million reasons not to want their kids to convert.

    Anyway, even non-Christians think the Chine Wine video is crazy for a Pastor’s wife.

  354. The sad thing, is that I’ll bet the outcome is that the poor accountants in the church are the ones who get punished.
    Sun ho can claim innocence, and Kong Hee will no doubt say he wasn’t aware of the problems in the difficult accounting procedures.

    Kong will claim pure motives – to preach the gospel. But those who set up the different accounts won’t be able to escape if they had accounting training.

    sad.

  355. Something to think about – Phil Pringle & A R Bernard ( Senior Pastor and CEO of Christian Cultural Center (CCC) Brooklyn, New York, HAD been tag team preaching month by month, at City Harvest Church after Kong Hee stepped down quite a while ago.

    A church size of City Harvest doesn’t have pastoral leadership that can fill Kong Hee shoes? They themselves haven’t “raised up leaders/teachers” in the manner of the C3 model that Kong Hee praised and attained to achieve, heavily, for years? (Phil being a spiritual father, so to speak?)

    I just don’t get it………

  356. Seriously – I don’t. There are executive pastors on staff, even read about them today, in their continued support of Kong Hee. Maybe a lurking C3 pastor could explain why the need to fly pastors from different continents, week in, week out, (not counting the expense involved flights, hotels etc). How qualified to lead/ teach are those existing, still on staff, City Harvest pastors?

  357. Anyway, this story bugs me. Really does.

    How could anyone justify spending 23 million of money sacrificially given by church members to sponsor the pop career of a pastors wife in another country. Evidently, she was criticized for being too sleazy in Singapore (it’s a very pretty conservative place).

    Watch the video “China Wine”. It would be one thing for a normal church member to make a video like that. Some would be for and some against, and most would say it’s her business to dress and perform however she wants. But, many Christians would not want her as a role model for their daughters.

    But, what justifies spending 23 million on her career? Which included the making of that video, and 20k on rent for obviously a very swanky place – and living away from her husband (who ironically enough talks about sex being the no 1 need of a husband). So, was the church paying for weekly plane flights to get them together?

    Have churches gone completely nuts? Pringle seems to be okay with it all. Did he know how much it was costing?

    No wait. It is effective evangelism. Maybe aspiring singers with no money will realize they can marry a pastor, build the church finances up, and launch their career with the offerings?

    It shouldn’t surprise me anymore that super zealous members of mega churches don’t mind anything the pastors do with the money.
    But what still surprised me is the mentality of the people at the top.

    The pastor and his singer wife – how do you get to the point when you aren’t embarrassed to spend that kind of money on yourself?

    Do they think? Or pray?

  358. Okay Margot. I’ll answer what I think. Mega churches like that are run and exist on hype and excitement. People don’t give money like that for normal Sunday services with average speakers and average sermons. It’s built around personality and charisma and the wow factor. (yeah I know – maybe it isn’t wow for you but it is for the people who go there).

    A church like that got to where it did on the speaking presence of Kong. And his continual appeals about the vision, and giving, and pressing on, and making that church big, and bigger, and greater and having influence in the nation….the nations….(you get it – you’ve probably heard it).

    The hardest thing for churches like that is having assistant pastors (the second, third fourth guy), who can carry it on. ANd usually the second and third guys don’t have it, because they are too loyal. If they were super motivational they’d probably move and be the senior pastor of their own church.

    Anyway, if the senior pastor is away, what better than to have some big name come in from overseas. Phil Pringle may not mean much to some people (my parents and the average joe may not know him), but when he comes into Singapore to that church, he’s the man – or better the man of God. So the people think their church is important, and God is doing great and exciting things still – the buzz is still there.

    THe only thing is when enough people don’t think the church “has it”, or the man of God is really “the man” anymore, and they vote with their feet, and their wallets. It’s happened time and time again in the US.

    Basically that’s how charismatic churches operate. Why do people choose charismatic churches? A big factor is the everlasting “God is really doing a special thing here, and has a special call/ blessing on it and the people”. So, the key for the pastor is to keep convincing people of that. Through saying it, through raising money for a new building, new ministry, or through big speakers coming through, or of course through testimonies of people who talk about how God (THROUGH THIS CHURCH and THIS PASTOR) changed their lives.

    It’s also another reason (besides free travel and money) that Pastors love to be invited overseas to speak. The members can be
    even more excited that their Pastor is being used not only here but in the world, and so by extension so are they.

    So, Phil gets to go overseas (lots of people love traveling), and the church in Singapore gets overseas speakers and so something to look forward to on Sunday, and actually there are times when the assistant pastors have doubts about what’s going on and won’t know what to preach on anyway.

    And here’s the biggie. With guys being flown in from overseas Kong doesn’t have to worry about a popular assistant pastor taking over while he isn’t there.

    The more I’ve spent with charismatic pastors the more I realize that regardless of the talk, they have all the same insecurities -what happens when I get old, what if people start leaving, why is the guy down the road getting more people.recognition/money than I am.

    Wow, I’ve said too much!

  359. I’m assuming the legal system in Singapore says that people are”innocent until proven guilty”. Having their passports confiscated is pretty serious.

    However this is a man who continually looks to and proclaims PP as a spiritual father? His story told at Presence 2012 certainly alludes to that. Does PP distance himself or take some responsibility for Kong Hee’s endeavours and/or advising on Sun Ho’s choice of music?

    There is just so much money coming into these mega churches through their unbiblical promoting of the tithe, are we seeing that extreme naivety and trust on the part of the “leader”? Or they are living in a rarified atmosphere where they are seemingly beyond reproach/deem themselves untouchable?

    I’m saddened by all this….seeing people I care about making excuses for some very human failings (that none of us are exempt from).

  360. Posted before reading your latest comment 🙂

    And it used to be “wow” for me, very grateful to have had that bubble burst….

  361. Not just the tithe – but the money seems to have been diverted from Arise and Build – sort of like Vision Builders, Kingdom Builders and those great words which mean – give more money.

    Yes it’s serious. This is the extension of the investigation over the last few years. So the authorities have been right through the books and there’s been serious creative accounting with bank accounts and countries involved. A Buddhist priest was jailed for misusing funds. It’s very serious. But like I said, I just hope it doesn’t happen like it often does where the ones behind the idea get away on the basis of ignorance of accounting laws, whereas the guys who gave up good jobs on the outside and dedicated their lives to the ministry get left with the biggest punishment.

    And if they after that decide the church was wrong, they won’t be welcome there either.

    (someone like Bones might remember Premier Joh’s famous “I was getting money in brown paper bags all the time” excuse….)

    I’ll bet the church accountants will take the fall for it.

    It’s really sad because many of the people in the church are no doubt first generation Christians who paid a price turn against their families traditional buddhism and in some cases perhaps Islam.

    It will be increasing harder to answer the rellies accusations that churches are just after your money now.

  362. Of course, some will say that they are innocent until proven guilty, but the Singapore didn’t just suddenly do this because of a blog. There’s been extensive investigations, the results of which are the basis for the arrests – of not one, but four people.

  363. btw Margot, if you want to see how effective the evangelistic results have been read through the pages of comments on the China Wine video. Not many are ready to crossover – they’re sticking to Madonna and Lady Gaga.

  364. It’s OK guys, Dr Phil’s over there to save the day.

    http://www.tremeritus.com/2012/06/29/chcs-advisory-pastor-in-singapore-to-lend-support/

    City Harvest Church’s (CHC) Advisory Pastor, Rev Dr Phil Pringle is in Singapore to stand with CHC and has expressed his support for the leadership.

    Dr Pringle said that he, along with CHC’s Advisory Chairman Dr A R Bernard, who is the senior pastor of Christian Cultural Centre in Brooklyn, New York, fully believe in and endorse the church’s Crossover Project as a mission to reach the world.

    Dr Pringle added “The Gospel is the Good News and Christians are meant to share it. CHC has done this through the Crossover Project which lies at the very heart of our religious beliefs.

    Nothing to see here.

    Move on.

  365. Specks is SPOT ON with this:-

    “Now I understand what Jesus meant when he said:

    Matt 23:15 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are.”

    It’s amazing! Phil Pringle has done exactly this to Kong Hee and made him twice as bad!”

    Most people overlook the fact, that from their honeymoon days, Pringle has mentored, advised and trained Kong Hee and Sun Ho. What is the result?
    The man who I believe is Asia’s most dangerous man (deceiving millions of people) and his wife who has prostituted herself to sing satanic music and act like an absolute slut, are the outcome of the Pringle influence.
    Some may argue that Phil’s teaching and training is great but I’m not so sure.Kong hee is a conman and disgrace to Christianity and an embarassment to the Church. Even non believers know Sun Ho’s music is satanic and most Singaporeans outside of CHC believe Kong hee is a scam. The sgforum is full of posts exposing his deception. Yahoosingapore the same. You tube , where videos aren’t moderated by him or her , has comments decrying their scams.
    Tomorrow is D day for Kong hee and some board members. Kong Hee is a slippery, slimy, greasy weasel and no doubt will spend tens of thousands of dollars of God’s money upon legal advice to try and weasel his way out. He’ll think he can scam the judges with smooth talk and lies but they will not be fooled. Unfortunately for him he’s going inside.For those of you worried about him dumping the blame on accountants, dont worry. He will be nailed and jailed tomorrow. Changi Prison , Singapore will be his new address and not his $9.3million Sentosa apartment.
    If you want to send encouragement for him to repent of his scamming and crimes contact him at Kong Hee, Changi Prison, Singapore.

  366. Yep, coffee and signposts. It’s supposed to prolong life.

    (apologies to those lurking who think that’s impossible because God has decided millions of years ago the day you’ll die)

    It’s working for me so far anyway.

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