Brian Houston, cay christian, gay christianity, gay controversy, gay issue, Hillsong, Hillsong Church, homosexuality, houston
Queerstianity: A group of people that supposedly push no political or religious agenda but “share” their philosophy of tolerance and love onto others.”
(Source: Urban Dictionary [slightly edited])
One of the reasons why we are monitoring the Hillsong Church is because of it’s ecumenical bullying. Hillsong has been pushing on Christianity various beliefs that oppose essential truths of the Christian faith. If you oppose their ecumenical love you are accused of being “critical” or “religious”.
The point of this series of articles is not to make this about what people think is the “Gay Issue”. The issue we are about to address is more important.
The problem is the “Christian Issue” and the Christian issue is this: we have Brian Houston of Hillsong Church operating as a spiritual fraud, claiming to represent the Christian faith in Australia and supposedly speak on behalf of God. We would like to make it very clear that Brian Houston is not a Christian. He disqualifies himself as a Christian and a pastor. Furthermore, he exposes himself again and again of being a false teacher and an enemy of Jesus.
He does not represent the Christian faith. In fact, we have exposed the fact he teaches a counterfeit faith to the Christian faith, a counterfeit gospel rather than the Christian gospel and a Jesus that is a counterfeit to the Christian Jesus. His beliefs are more in line with New Age/Occult/ Fascist paradigms than the Christian worldview.
Now Brian is grooming Christians in his movement to embrace the false “Gay Christian” doctrine. This is a VERY sensitive issue yet very black and white within the Christian world view. We are simply being obedient to God’s Word to expose the wickedness and deceit behind Brian Houston and other men’s push to redefine Christianity to suit their own selfish ambitions. There are some very good resources available that explain why it is a lie to embrace Gay Christianity.
We hope to add more resources over time.
White Horse Inn Radio covers this issue with sensitivity,
White Horse Inn with Michawl Horton – An Interview with Rosaria Champagne Butterfield (The Unlikely Convert)
How can we discern between helpful and unhelpful ways to reach out to our non-Christian neighbors? More particularly, how should we deal with the thorny subject of homosexuality or interact with those in our lives who deal with same-sex attraction? To help us navigate these waters, in this edition of White Horse Inn we talk with Rosaria Champagne Butterfield. She describes her previous life as a “lesbian feminist professor” in recently published book, The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert.
Fighting for the Faith hosting Chris Rosebrough examines the Gay Christianity controversy against the scriptures,
Fighting for the Faith with Chris Rosebrough – This Message Is Banned By The State Religion Of The United States
Click Here to Download this episode
• Russell Moore, Al Mohler and Erin Benziger weigh in on the Louie Giglio controversy.
• A survey of the Biblical teaching on same sex sins.
Fighting for the Faith does another excellent rebuttal here,
First Gay Affirming SBC Church?
Click Here to Download this episode
• California Baptist Church Changes View on Homosexuality After Pastor’s Son Comes Out Gay
• Al Mohler Responds to the First Gay Affirming SBC Church.
• Debunking Matthew Vines’ Bible Twisting
• Sermon Review: Drift: Emotional Health by Youth Pastor Caleb of Narrate Church
Dividing Line Radio with Dr James White does an exceptional job covering this issue,
Dividing Line with James White – Gay Christianity refuted
The complete response to Matthew Vines is now available as a single program. Yes its five hours and nine minutes long, (72meg in size), but the world needs to hear this message. We believe this so much that we have decided to make this publicly available to be distributed for free. Share it with your friends and relatives. We’ve titled it “Gay Christianity” Refuted and only ask that you not change it or sell it. All fair use rules apply for criticism too.
You can play it here or right click and download it. All that we ask is that if you are edified by it please consider supporting this work on a regular basis. There is more where that came from Lord willing.
“Gay Christianity” Refuted by James White is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License Based on a work at aomin.org.
Here is Dr Albert Mohler’s piece that is worth understanding:
There Is No ‘Third Way’ — Southern Baptists Face a Moment of Decision (and so will you)
Southern Baptists will be heading for Baltimore in just a few days, and the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention is to be held in a city that has not hosted the convention since 1940. This time, Baptists attending the meeting will face an issue that would not have been imaginable just a few years ago, much less in 1940 — a congregation that affirms same-sex relationships.
Just days before the convention, news broke that a congregation in suburban Los Angeles has decided to affirm same-sex sexuality and relationships. In an hour-long video posted on the Internet, Pastor Danny Cortez explains his personal change of mind and position on the issue of homosexuality and same-sex relationships. He also addressed the same issues in a letter posted at Patheos.com.
In the letter, Cortez describes a sunny day at the beach in August of 2013 when “I realized I no longer believed in the traditional teachings regarding homosexuality.”
Shortly thereafter, he told his 15-year-old son that he “no longer believed what he used to believe.” His son responded with an even more direct word to his father: “Dad, I’m gay.” As Cortez writes, “My heart skipped a beat and I turned towards him and we gave one another the biggest and longest hug as we cried. And all I could tell him was that I loved him so much and that I accepted him just as he is.”
According to the pastor, events then came rather quickly. On February 7, 2014, his son, Drew, posted a “coming out video” on YouTube. Two days later, the pastor told his church about his new position on the issue (also posted on the Internet). In his message to the New Heart Community Church congregation, Cortez admitted that his “new position” represented a “radical shift” that put him into conflict with both the position of the church and the convictions of the denomination, the Southern Baptist Convention. He acknowledged that his change of heart on the issue of homosexuality put him at odds with the SBC’s confession of faith, theBaptist Faith & Message.
In his letter, the pastor said that his aim was to see the congregation “allow for grace in the midst of disagreement.” To his regret, he said, many in the church were not pleased and the church had to consider whether to terminate the pastor. After voting on March 9 to prolong the time of consideration and prayer, the church voted on May 18 not to dismiss the pastor and “to instead become a Third Way church.”
Cortez cited Vineyard pastor Ken Wilson’s book, released earlier this year,A Letter to My Congregation. Wilson, who serves a Vineyard church in Ann Arbor, Michigan, describes his book as “an evangelical pastor’s path to embracing people who are gay, lesbian, and transgender in the company of Jesus.” Wilson argues that, even as he has come to affirm same-sex behaviors and relationships, the issue need not divide congregations or Christians.
Pastor Cortez cited Wilson’s argument as foundational to the position he and his church are now taking — “agree to disagree and not cast judgment on one another.”
But, there is no third way. A church will either believe and teach that same-sex behaviors and relationships are sinful, or it will affirm them. Eventually, every congregation in America will make a public declaration of its position on this issue. It is just a matter of time (and for most churches, not much time) before every congregation in the nation faces this test.
The impossibility of a “third way” is made clear in Pastor Cortez’s own letter.
In one paragraph, he writes:
“So now, we will accept the LGBT community even though they may be in a relationship. We will choose to remain the body of Christ and not cast judgement. We will work towards graceful dialogue in the midst of theological differences. We see that this is possible in the same way that our church holds different positions on the issue of divorce and remarriage. In this issue we are able to not cast judgement in our disagreement.”
But in the very next paragraph, he writes:
“Unfortunately, many who voted to remain traditional will now separate from us in a couple of weeks. We are in the period of reconciliation and forgiveness. Please pray for us in this. Then on June 8, we will formally peacefully separate, restate our love for one another, and bless each other as we part ways. It has been a very tiring and difficult process.”
In two successive paragraphs the pastor refutes himself. His church is notgoing to take a middle ground. He states clearly that “we will accept the LGBT community even though they may be in a relationship.” And his church did not unanimously “agree to disagree,” for a significant portion of the church is leaving on June 8, just 48 hours before the Southern Baptist Convention convenes in Baltimore. Many “who voted to remain traditional” are now forced by conviction to leave the church.
Why? Because there is no “third way.” The New Heart Community Church has voted to “accept the LGBT community even though they may be in a relationship.” Even if it is claimed that some continuing members of the church are in disagreement with the new policy and position, they will be members of a church that operates under that new policy. At the very least, their decision to remain in the congregation is a decision to stay within a church that affirms same-sex behaviors and relationships. That is not a middle position. It is not a “third way.”
For some time now, it has been increasingly clear that every congregation in this nation will be forced to declare itself openly on this issue. That moment of decision and public declaration will come to every Christian believer, individually. There will be no place to hide, and no place safe from eventual interrogation. The question will be asked, an invitation will be extended, a matter of policy must be decided, and there will be no refuge.
There is no third way on this issue. Several years ago, I made that argument and was assailed by many on the left as being “reductionistically binary.” But, the issue is binary. A church will recognize same-sex relationships, or it will not. A congregation will teach a biblical position on the sinfulness of same-sex acts, or it will affirm same-sex behaviors as morally acceptable. Ministers will perform same-sex ceremonies, or they will not.
Interestingly, a recent point of agreement on this essential point has come from an unexpected source. Tony Jones, long known as a leader in the “emerging church” has written that there is no “third way” on same-sex marriage. As Jones notes, denominations may study the issue for some time, but eventually it will take a vote. At that point, it will either allow for same-sex marriage, or not.
In his words:
“And the same goes for an individual congregation. At some point, every congregation in America will decide either, YES, same-sex marriages will take place in our sanctuary, performed by our clergy; or NO, same-sex marriages will not take place in our sanctuary, performed by our clergy. There is no third way on that. A church either allows same-sex marriages, or it doesn’t.”
Tony Jones and I stand on opposite sides of this issue, but on the impossibility of a “third way” we are in absolute agreement. Conservative evangelicals have understood this for some time. It is interesting that those on the left now understand the issue in the same “binary” terms. There is no middle position.
Once again, Tony Jones gets right to the essential point:
“What I’m saying is that a church or an organization can study the issue in theory, and they can even do so for years. But this isn’t really a ‘third way’ or a ‘middle ground.’ Instead, it is a process. And at some point, that process has to end and practices have to be implemented. At that point, there’s no third way. You either affirm marriage equality in your practices, or you do not.”
Actually, as we have seen, Pastor Cortez makes the same point. The practice of his congregation is now to accept openly-gay members and members in openly-gay relationships. That does not allow for any middle ground, and that is why his church faces an exodus of members next Sunday.
Now, the Southern Baptist Convention also faces a moment of unavoidable decision. A church related to the Convention has officially adopted a gay-affirming position. The Baptist Faith & Message, the denomination’s confession of faith, states that homosexuality is immoral and that marriage is “the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime.”
Furthermore, the Convention’s constitution states explicitly that any congregation that endorses homosexual behavior is “not in cooperation with the Convention,” and thus excluded from its membership.
There is nothing but heartbreak in this situation. Here we face a church that has rejected the clear teachings of Scripture, the affirmations of its confession of faith, and two millennia of Christian moral wisdom and teaching. But the Convention also faces a test of its own resolve and convictional courage.
I am confident that the Southern Baptist Convention will act in accordance with its own convictions, confession of faith, and constitution when messengers to the Convention gather next week in Baltimore. But every single evangelical congregation, denomination, mission agency, school, and institution had better be ready to face the same challenge, for it will come quickly, and often from an unexpected source. Once it comes, there is no middle ground, and no “third way.”
Sooner or later — and probably sooner — the answer of every church and Christian will be either yes or no.
Apologist expert Walter Martin writes how Jesus did condemn homosexuality,
Jesus does condemn homosexuality
I first became interested in the issues of homosexuality in the early 1950′s when I was a graduate student at New York University centered in Greenwich Village in New York. It was in that particular area I came in contact with every conceivable kind of deviation from the norm, shall we say, and particularly there was a tremendous amount of homosexuality apparent out in the open, and even flaunted at that particular time.
Today [circa 1980], of course, we have gay lobbies, legislation being proposed for the benefit of the gay community; we have gay public relation departments, we have the phrase, “Gays of the World Unite,” and we have about us, on every side, the media quite obviously trying, or attempting, to give the gays—or the homosexuals—a fair shake. I don’t think you can honestly evaluate the problem and look squarely at it from the perspective of Biblical theology without being provoked in your thought processes and in your spiritual nature.
The 17th chapter of the Book of the Acts, the Apostle Paul in Athens, was provoked by the evil he saw about him. In that case it happened to be idolatry in which the whole city was given over to the worship of idols. Now had the Apostle not been provoked in his spirit and become angry, spiritually, at the evil—not the people—but the evil they were practicing and which held them in bondage, he would never have had an opportunity to go to the Areopagus, which was the court that heard public speakers and licensed them to talk in Athens.
And had he never debated in the marketplace, and made it a basic issue for everyday communication, he would never have had the opportunity to preach his message on Mars Hill. So what got him to Mars Hill and out [into] the marketplace where people could listen to him on the higher echelons of learning, and to penetrate and to permeate all other levels—as a result—was the fact that within himself he was provoked at the presence of evil.
And I think the Christian Church has to be provoked, always, at the presence of evil. The great sin of the church today, and there are a number, is that we are apathetic, lethargic—happy to go along with the tide—and courageous when it doesn’t cost us something. And because of that, today we have a whole community of individuals for whom Jesus Christ died—the gay community—and they’re not being ministered to, they’re not being penetrated, they’re not being successfully evangelized.
And because the church will not move forward, [it] has become essentially impotent in the area because it doesn’t want to “get involved.” Evangelical Christianity has drawn back from the conflict, liberal Christianity has plunged into it; not with the Gospel of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the soul, but attempting to find some rationale for the permission of the acts—which of course is and scholastic, theological, and historical madness.
Now there are people who say, “Well, there are convincing arguments put forward by homosexuals who are good theologians.” There is no good theological theologian; and the reason why there isn’t any good homosexual theologian is, to adopt the position, you must vitiate Biblical revelation. And this is something nobody wants to face. I am vigorously opposed to the prostitution of Holy Scripture in defense of what God has considered one of the most vile of all acts.
Now that’s just plain Biblical revelation that has to be faced. And someone will say, “Well, that’s a very hard line.” It’s mitigated by God’s attitude toward Sodom and Gomorrah before He destroyed [them]. Let us no forget that before the Lord rained fire and sulfur on Sodom that He first was willing to spare the city. That He first loved enough—despite the evil—to say, “Find 50, find 10, find 5, who were justified and I’ll spare it.”
It was not an arbitrary, capricious, annihilation of a city; it was the result of cosmic judgment because love was rejected, judgment ensues. Now, there are those who take a very hard line on homosexuality; and when they take too hard a line, they forget that the homosexual is a victim of sin. What is sin? It is defined for us as transgression of the Law; and all unrighteousness is sin. Now if we accept that, the next question which must follow logically is: What saith the Law?
For if sin is unrighteousness, and all unrighteousness is sin—and sin is described in the context of the Law—you would automatically have to go to the Law to find out what it was. That’s if you know anything about exegesis and Biblical hermeneutics, you’d have to do it. And immediately when you go to the Torah you find God saying, “Cursed is any man that lies with a man as with woman.” I don’t even think that needs interpretation.
I don’t think it needs blackboard diagram; or any amount of sophisticated logical presentation a fortiori. I think you can be a fifth-grader and understand that if God says “cursed” is something He takes an extremely dim view of it. I think that’s a rational approach. So the homosexual theologians who are attempting today to defend homosexuality on the basis of Biblical theology are in the same position as the Sadducees, to whom Jesus addressed this remark: “You do err. Not knowing the Scriptures or the power of God.”
That’s exactly where they are. They are trying to put Christianity and homosexuality in the same bed; and you’re not gonna do it because Jesus Christ very forcibly condemned it. And you say, “Where in the New Testament did Jesus ever mention homosexuality?” Open your Bibles and find out; because contrary to what the gay church says, He not only spoke against it—He went out of His way to make it very clear [so] nobody’d misunderstand Him.
Of course, you do have to study your Greek New Testament to come up with it. Most homosexual theologians, so-called, that I have talked to don’t even know the Greek alphabet, much less their Greek exegesis so they miss it completely—but it’s here in the passage and it should be looked at. Matthew, chapter 15, Christ is speaking, verse 19, “For out of the heart proceeds evil thoughts, murders,” notice the differentiation, “adulteries, fornications,” plural, “thefts, false witness, blasphemies.”
“These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile.” “The word homosexual is not there; what are you arguing about?” I’m arguing about the use of the word porneus, which was found written over the wall, and the doorway, and the arches, in excavations [by] archaeologists of Roman brothels. And the word porneus did not mean “sex before marriage” alone.
It meant homosexuality, bestiality, and all forms of degraded sex. And it became well known to everybody in the culture, if any of them ever did their homework, that porneus referred to anything goes. Jesus well knew the Roman brothels. He well knew the culture of His time; and when He said adulteries and fornications—plural—He was making a direct reference to the practices of the Romans and the Greeks and the pagans of the time who prostituted themselves to all forms of evil.
He knew it; He condemned it. It’s not just the matter of the word, it’s a matter of the culture; and Jesus certainly understood the culture of His time—if He didn’t, nobody did. And therefore, when He used the word fornications, He obviously was making reference to all forms—all forms, inclusive forms—of that which was the deviation from the norm of Jewish law.
And the reason I can say that with such dogmatism is because He was a rabbi. And if a rabbi didn’t know Jewish law on the subject of homosexuality, nobody on earth knew it. Jesus was a rabbi; a master of the Law. In fact, He was the only person that could ever say to a man on the Sabbath day, “Take up your bed and go home.” And when He was questioned on it He responded in John, chapter 5, that He could loose the Law of the Sabbath any time He wanted to for the Son of Man was Yahveh of the Sabbath.
Which meant He could do whatever He wanted with His Own Law because it was His. I do think that we have forgotten the fact that universe belongs to Somebody else; that this creation was ordained by Somebody Who had a specific plan in mind. He did not make Adam 1 and Adam 2. He made Adam and Eve. Now if He wanted to have the “gift” of homosexuality bestowed upon His creation, I feel He would have bent over backwards to explain to us that homosexual love was perfectly acceptable, as was heterosexual love.
And we would have had more partners in the Garden; but we don’t have more partners in the Garden, because what the Creator designed as natural, He says is natural. Not us, He says it’s natural. Now our homosexual revisionist theologians say that [homosexuality] is a gift from God. No, it’s a gift from Satan; because it is sin, and is a transgression of what God says, not obedience.
Who is the first transgressor; the liar and the murderer from the beginning. Who first broke the Law? Satan. Who first disrupted the natural order of heaven; which was the love of God and fellowship with Him. Satan. Who penetrated creation and destroyed… Satan. Who penetrated the Garden and led [Adam and Eve] astray; “You will not die, you will become gods.” Satan.
Who has always deviated from the norm of divine revelation? Satan. And who today is trying to put Christ and homosexuality together? Satan. And it’s against this that the church must stand. There is a basic theological issue that must not be debated; it just simply must be affirmed. Jesus condemned all unnatural sexual practices. And that definition would come under the Law, which He Himself gave.
It was Christ Who gave Moses the Law on Sinai. If you don’t know that, you don’t even know the rudiments of Biblical theology; because in the 3rd chapter of Exodus, the Voice that spoke from the burning bush said, “AhYah Asher AhYah, I Am That I Am.” And Jesus Christ, to the Jews in John chapter 8—verse 58 said, “AhYah; I Am the eternal God.” The minute He said that, they reach for rocks.
They didn’t need any diagrams, they knew Who He said He was… Now I think, therefore, the bedrock position must be established; theologically, there is no room for homosexuality inthe revelation of God. There isn’t room, really, for it to be debated seriously. It simply has to faced for what it is; the practice is condemned by a divine curse.
Source: http://apprising.org/2011/03/21/jesus-does-condemn-homosexuality/, Published 21/03/2011. (Accessed 06/06/2014.)
On 30 November 2011, Joel A’Bell sent this email to all of Hillsong:
” Hi Church,
The definition of marriage is going to a conscience vote in parliament and many of you would have your own convictions about this. The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) are asking for urgent support to sign their petition and keep the marriage act between a man and a woman.
We have attached a link for you to access their website and register your vote. http://australianmarriage.org/petition/
As always, continue to pray for the leaders that govern this great country, that God’s wisdom would be relied upon and the name of Jesus exalted!
See you on the weekend!
Hillsong Church, Australia ”
( See: http://m.essentialbaby.com.au/forums/index.php?/topic/941521-deleted-post/page__p__14040446#entry14040446 )
Around the same time Joel A’Bell mentioned this a couple of times at church, and he passionately said that no one would ever force him to perform a gay marriage. I seriously doubt that Joel A’Bell would have changed his beliefs in the intervening years.
This post by you is more lies and gross assumptions. Hillsong accepting people for who they are is not about promoting homosexuality.
Totally agree with you, Newtaste
Hillsong and Brian Houston may have a high profile but quite frankly given the watered gospel messages that have been preached for years I’m not surprised to hear there are many gay people attending Hillsong churches wanting to accepted and have their practicing homosexuality given the church’s blessing.
@BrianCHouston Tweet 12:09 PM Apr 25th 2009
STOPPRESS:Hillsong r not preaching against gays. We r not stooges of the right nor teachers of excessive wealth. Just helping+loving people
Wonder what a “stooge of the right” means?
From Desiring God just this week: “Why homosexuality is not like other sins.”
“Homosexuality is not the only sin mentioned in 1 Corinthians 6:9–10.
“Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”
It’s not the only sin mentioned, but it is different from all the rest, at least right now. At this moment in history, contrary to the other sins listed here, homosexuality is celebrated by our larger society with pioneering excitement. It’s seen as a good thing, as the new hallmark of progress.
To be sure, the masses increasingly make no bones about sin in general. Innumerable people are idolaters, not to mention those who are sexually immoral, or who commit adultery, or who steal and are greedy and get wasted and revile neighbors and swindle others. It happens all the time. And each of these unrepentant sins are the same in the sense of God’s judgment. They all deserve his wrath. And we’re constantly reminded that “such were some of you” (1 Corinthians 6:11).
Concerning Popular Opinion
But as far as I know, none of those sins are applauded so aggressively by whole groups of people who advocate for their normalcy. Sexual immorality is no longer the tip of the spear for the progressive push. Adultery is still frowned upon by many. Accusations of greed will still smear a candidate’s political campaign. Thievery is still not openly embraced, and there are no official initiatives saying it’s okay to go steal things that don’t belong to you. There’s no such thing as a drunk agenda yet. Most aren’t proud to choose a beverage over stability, and there aren’t any petitions that the government should abolish the driving restrictions of inebriated individuals. Reviling others still isn’t seen as the best way to win friends and influence people. Swindling, especially on a corporate level, usually gets someone thrown into jail. In fact, the infrastructure of the American economy depends upon, in some measure, our shared disdain for conniving scammers.
Perhaps excepting fornication, these sins are still seen in a pretty negative light. But not homosexual practice, not by those who are now speaking loudest and holding positions of prominence. According to the emerging consensus, homosexuality is different.
What to Be Against
As Christians, we believe with deepest sincerity that the embrace of homosexual practice, along with other sins, keeps people out of the kingdom of God. And if our society celebrates it, we can’t both be caring and not say anything. Too much is at stake. This means it is an oversimplification to say that Christians — or conservative evangelicals — are simply against homosexuality. We are against any sin that restrains people from everlasting joy in God, and homosexual practice just gets all the press because, at this cultural moment, it’s the main sin that is so freshly endorsed in our context by the powers that be. Let’s hope that if there’s some new cultural agenda promoting thievery — one that says it’s now our right to take whatever we want from others by whatever means — that Christians will speak out against it. The issue is sin. That’s what we’re against. And that’s what should make our voice so unique when we speak into this debate.
Some would like to see this whole issue of homosexuality divided into two camps: those who celebrate it and those who hate it. Both of these groups exist in our society. There are the growing numbers, under great societal pressure, who praise homosexuality. We might call them the left. And there are people who hate homosexuality, with the most bigoted rationale and apart from any Christian concern. We might call them the right.
Those Glorious Words
The current debate is plagued by this binary lens. Those on the left try to lump everyone who disagrees with them into that right side. If you don’t support, you hate. Meanwhile, those on the right see compromise and spinelessness in anyone who doesn’t get red-faced and militant. If you don’t hate, you support.
But true followers of Christ will walk neither path. We have something to say that no one else is saying, or can say.
Distancing ourselves from both the left and the right, we don’t celebrate homosexual practice, we acknowledge God’s clear revealed word that it is sin; and we don’t hate those who embrace homosexuality, we love them enough to not just collapse under the societal pressure. We speak the truth in love into this confusion, saying, simultaneously, “That’s wrong” and “I love you.” We’re not the left; we say, this is wrong. And we’re not the right; we say, you’re loved. We speak good news, with those sweetest, deepest, most glorious words of the cross — the same words that God spoke us — “You’re wrong, and you’re loved.”
God tells us we’re wrong, that the wages of sin is death, that unrepentant rebellion means judgment, that our rescue required the cursed death of his Son (Romans 3:23; John 3:36; Galatians 3:13). And God tells us we’re loved, that even while we were sinners, Jesus died for us, that while we were unrighteous, Jesus suffered in our place, that though we were destined for wrath, Jesus welcomes us into glory (Romans 5:8; 1 Peter 3:18; Ephesians 2:1–7).
Where the Gospel Shines
You’re wrong and you’re loved — that’s the unique voice of the Christian. That’s what we say, speaking from our own experience, as Tim Keller so well puts it, “we’re far worse than we ever imagined, and far more loved than we could ever dream.”
That’s our message in this debate, when society’s elites despise us, when pop songs vilify us, when no one else has the resources to say anything outside of two extremes, we have this incomparable opportunity to let the gospel shine, to reach out in grace: you’re wrong and you’re loved. We get to say this.
That’s why homosexuality is not like other sins.”
Grooming? That’s a pretty harsh statement!
I agree. There is nothing in this post that supports that accusation from Hillsong. It is all mere speculation at this point.
Annette, I also think that the use of the term grooming is very harsh.
“But as far as I know, none of those sins are applauded so aggressively by whole groups of people who advocate for their normalcy.”
Many thousands of Australians steal every day, and see absolutely nothing, or nothing much, wrong with downloading pirated material. Hillsong Church Watch and C3 Church Watch break copyright laws in some of their posts by reproducing news articles in full without the permission of the copyright owner – that is theft, and a sin. And even though I have pointed this out to them before, in a comment they deleted, they continue with their practice. They obviously see nothing wrong with it and see it as normal and acceptable behaviour.
“without the permission of the copyright owner – that is theft, and a sin”. Then C3 and C3 coomera have sinned [ and absolutely broken the law] by using McDonalds photos and logos in their ‘advertisement’ last Easter Sunday.
Speaking of theft…how is it that Pringle can ‘sell’ his ‘cross’ paintings,’sculptures’ and xmas cards….Luckily Jesus Christ did not ‘copyright’ it…phil would be in real trouble.
Don’t be ridiculous. Piracy is not theft, it’s just piracy. Theft is where you take something away; piracy is making a duplicate. I’d still say piracy is sinful in a lot of cases but in some cases the laws are archaic or abused by copyright holders. I certainly wouldn’t say that everyone who reproduces something without permission is sinning, and it’s certainly not theft.
I do wonder what newtaste thinks about photocopiers at the library and newsagent?
For what it’s worth… you might want to read this guy’s blog post about “Breakfast with Brian Houston”
Well..supposedly the ‘enemy’ [ those who do not accept homosexuality as christian ] is ignorance.But isn’t that calling the Word of God ‘ignorant’ ..Are you calling the Command and Instruction of God ignorant? Should God retreat…make Himself a liar…to placate the 20th century?
Totally agree with you, the truth. I take back my previous comments. Just had a look at the breakfast with Brian Houston document. I am shocked! Didn’t realise that hillsong supported gay Christianity! It contradicts Gods Word, which means it’s wrong.
I wouldn’t be surprised if prosperity type ministries like Hillsong and C3 will over time move to become more like new age institutions, with the “self” as the centre piece rather than Jesus. And they’ll do that to accommodate as many people as they can, which increase numbers, which increases revenue and sales of products like music.
It will have to be done gradually so as not to alarm the current congregation, but I would not be surprised if it happens. It’s not like they don’t know how to twist scripture already. They may eventually even try to redefine God as some sort of Gaia figure.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if prosperity type ministries like Hillsong and C3 will over time move to become more like new age institutions, with the “self” as the centre piece rather than Jesus.”
Too late. They already are. Look at our article, Phil Pringle’s Secret to faith. You can trace the word of faith heresy back to the new age occult teachings of the metaphysical and Christian Science cults. Otherwise pick up a new age and book and compare the Jesus of Hillsong and C3 to their Jesus.
Hi folks! Want to talk about ”theft for 5 or 10? Well, here’s a doosey…
Keneth Hagin has often been cited as the “father” of the modern Word of Faith movement (Hyper Faith) but others with an intimate knowldege of just how this whole set of false doctrines came into being, would strongly disagree.
Years ago, a book called “A Different Gospel” by Dan R McConnell came into my posession (I still have it) and it shows very clearly, that much of Hagin’s work was plagiarised by Hagin, then then copied over to Copeland, et al.
There are tables within the book, that show side by side comparisons between Kenyon’s original work (which commenced in 1916,) as opposed to Hagin’s first work, which was published decades later in 1960.
I finally found a link to an online version of some of the information, which documents those comparisons:
Talk about theft? Sure, go right ahead, but there are much bigger fish to fry that what spills forth from a photocopier down at the local library. People have been fed a whole bookshelf full of lies from these false prophets, who also got paid for it into the bargain.
The followers were given false hopes, as they chanted the various mantras (“I’m a BELIEVER” is pretty typical,) and there have been recorded tragedies, even here in Australia, where people who believed in Hyper Faith, dumped off going to their doctor, and worse still, even prevented their children from going there for medical help too, only to watch them get far worse, and in the worst case scenarios, even watched them die.
This sounds to me, more like the cultish thinking of the JW’s , who still prevent their followers from receiving blood transfusions, (some governments have introduced local laws that circumvent this ridiculous behaviour,) because of a distorted view of certain Old Testament texts, which have been taken way out of context.
People have literally had their lives stolen because of a misplaced belief in so called “faith”, which exhibits no real faith in God at all. It is all based on what Brother X has said from the pulpit, or what Sister Y said at a conference, and people have paid dearly for their missplaced trust in “God” whose image has also been badly distorted in the process. The “god” of Hyper Faith is NOT the God of the Bible…
Do you really think that the victims of this false teachings are spared one thought due to the tragic consequences that they have often found themselves having to live with? NO!
The victims are almost always told that : “You didn’t have enough faith…” or the worst one of all is usually: “I never told you not to see your doctor…” but of course, it is still implied that if you prefer to go to your doctor, then “you don’t have enough faith” anyway – circular reasoning is, in some cases, killing people, and the “faith” teachers, don’t even seem to care…
You cannot put your faith in “faith” – you can only put your Bible based faith in God.
Ignore this fact at your peril…
For some reason this all reminds me in a way of the Neurolinguistic Programming (or Psychotherapy) movement. Developed by Richard Bandler and John Grinder, it was really propelled by people like Tony Robbins and his kind (performance coaches etc) who made an extraordinary amount of money from it.
There are aspects of NLP which are very useful in influencing people, and you see some of theses techniques weekly in use at your C3 church. It really does work, but it is manipulative.
So you have a faith movement started by preachers in order to become prosperous through “God’s blessing”, and is perpetuated by others looking to achieve the same thing, just like you have the NLP movement (which cuts God out all together) where you have a procession of “coaches” teaching how to be prosperous and successful while making a fortune themselves.
There really doesn’t seem to be a lot of difference between the two! People getting rich by telling others how to become rich! But unfortunately wealth is a zero sum game, so while a handful of guys really are getting filthy rich, guess who’s paying for it?
Icarus, sorry, I didn’t mean to ignore your post. I came across the NLP technique that you were talking about, when I was reading up on certain cults some years back. It depends heavily on getting your subjects (congregation?) into a passive state of mind, where they are open to suggestions, that are embedded in their thinking, by the NLP.
This passivity often comes about by working them up into a frenzy first. Then, when the songs are all sung, and the “offering” has been taken, the “sermon” will be enough to pre-program them for whatever comes next.
I have heard the testimonials of those who have come out of an Anthony Robins seminar, as being “mind changing, life changing new outlook on life” etc, so you are right in the sense that it certainly appears to work for some.
The question is however, should we be using such methodologies in the Church? NO! Jesus did not have to resort to some hyped up and distorted version of the gospel in order to get results. Neither did the apostles or elders of the early church.
Theirs was a simple gospel message, that had the power of the Holy Spirit behind it to convict of sin, righteousness, judgement and of things to come (in eternity), and it was glorifying to God, while recognising that fallen man was a sinner, who needed a saviour – not a pep talk!
Can you imagine Jesus, standing on the steps leading into the temple, shouting at the passing crowd and saying:
“Come on down folks, just sign up for the seminar – see Peter and James at the front door, and pay your registration fee. We’ve got some of the best preachers on site this morning – brother Janus from Mammon Enterprises who will share on “Kingdom Investments”, and some local talent in the form of pastor Mordechai, from Moneychanger Minsitries, from right here inside the temple.”
Now, you could argue that you’d get a good crowd along to that meeting, but what kind of crowd would they be? What would their motive be for attending? Money, or the words of Jesus Christ on how to live (a la the sermon on the mount)?
If you’re using NLP techniques on a regular basis, then it doesn’t really matter, as you will probably get the crowd AND their money, regardless of what ‘gospel’ you preach to them when they arrive.
The sheep will be mauled, the wolves will have their supper, and no one will be the wiser…
OOOPPS!! Big mistake – this paragraph should have read:
“Years ago, a book called “A Different Gospel” by Dan R McConnell came into my posession (I still have it) and it shows very clearly, that much of Kenyon’s work was plagiarised by Hagin, then then copied over to Copeland, et al.”
Sorry for that typo,
“For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.” 2 Cor 11:1 – 4
I know that these scriptures must have been shared both here and in many other places, but there are always newbies coming over for a look see, so I feel that it is relevant to mention this one and others, for their benefit. Paul is warning the Corinthian church about the false apostles they have been listening to, who seemed more knowledgable and much more eloquent than he, however, there were hidden dangers in doing that.
A false gospel/doctrine, underpinned by false prophecies (to make the ‘doctrine’ sound more ‘spiritual’ with the intent of showing that it is “of God”,) must also have a false image of God to accompany it. An image of the one true God of the Bible, spewing forth false teachings, or backing false prophecies, would never deceive the masses – the image of the “deity” must also be morphed into something more akin to a false one, so that all three line up and the deception is then complete.
Another ‘Jesus’, as espoused by the Hyper Faith ilk, would be the ‘Jesus’ that owns a large house, drives a fast car, has lots of money coming in, heals all, delivers all and teaches his followers to believe, teach and do the same, seemingly without any effort or sacrifice on their part.. Oh, I forgot – that sounds just like these false prophets, doesn’t it? Well, how did I miss that one?
THEY are teaching exactly that – you must have all of these material ‘blessings’ that appear to come from the hand of “God”. In reality, they come from gullible followers, who line the coffers of these people week after week, until they have so much money (and their followers have so little,) that they just don’t know what to do with it any more… Well, maybe they could give some of it back? “Sorry, but that’s not company policy” would be the curt reply.
Another “spirit’ could be the current happenings within the NAR movement at this present time. I have testified here and in other places before, about the false (almost Catholic like,) manifestations that are passed off as ‘miracles’ of God, but they cannot be found in scripture – anywhere in scripture. Even the wildest interpretations go nowhere near describing these patently false displays as being confirmed miracles coming from the hand of God.
Another “gospel” could be the ‘feel good’ experiences (as I’ve said in other posts before,) where new commers are being :”churched” and not saved. This “churching” of the people was obvious to me some years ago here in Brisbane, where people would come in, take a bulletin, sit down and learn from experience week after week, what was expected of them when they were “in church”.
They never got saved (born again) nor was there any apparent change (after months or even years,) in their lives, but they knew exactly how to behave when in “church”. The watered down Bibles (like the “Massage”) produced a watered down message, which then produced false conversions. Then the meeting hall would begin to fill up with some very well dressed, well mannered people, who were still very wordly underneath all of that religious camoflage, which had been layered on top of them over the period of their involvement – but no one actually got saved – not even one… They wanted the appearance of righteousness, but were not prepared to pay the price.
The false gospel had worked a false conversion. The people had been taught to worship a false image of ‘Jesus’ and the ‘spirit’ had confirmed both the ‘gospel’ and the image of ‘Jesus’ through a constant stream of false prophecies.
That’s how it works folks. And that is why so many churches welcome worldly music/worship, and are more about dating and mating, than they are about conviction and repentance. You welcome the world in, you dress them up and educate them for particpation in ‘church’ and then you proceed to fleece them for all that they have got. And if you think that I am off topic in all of this – it applies just as much to the gay community, as it does to anyone else… they’ll take your money too – all of it!
That is what you have been paying for all of these years, if you have been deceived by these false man-made movements. You may be attending a ‘church’ but you have may not have been born again into the real Church of Jesus Christ – in short, you have been sold a pup… How did this happen? How could we have been so deceived? Well it’s happened because you were listening to the wrong people. What kind of people?
“For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.”
2 Cor 11:13 – 14
You were done over by the master deceiver, none other than Satan himself… all of you.
that is very strong stuff, yet it is so true they are following the god of this world who have blinded the eyes of them which believe not. 2 corinthians 4;4. yes so many false conversions, no disciples. these churches dont care about your souls, they only care about people giving, serving, and bulding their churches.
and when people get burnt out and drained out, and leave. they will replace them with someone else. there is always new people coming into these churches, yet these types of churches have a very high turnover of people.
It grieves me, Mr Hatch to even have to think about these people and their massive deceptions in the name of God, let alone write about them, but they must be exposed, as they are pulling many people down with them. Jesus spoke thus of the Pharisees, who liked to parade their good works and religiosity before men:
“And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward…
But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.” Matt 6:5-6
How can they be that deceived? Did Jesus do this, did the apostles teach this (chapter and verse please… crickets chirping…) This kind of spectacle reminds me more of a pagan shelling out a votive offering at some pagan shrine, in order to appease the anger of the Deity – and that’s xxactly what it is – a form of paganised churchianity.
Jesus’ teaching on giving and doing good deeds in the preceding verses, is similar – don’t be a hypocrite! So how do these people think that God can possibly “bless” them, when they are required to walk out to the front, in front of 20,000 people, and dump wads of their hard earned cash into the biggest bucket that Phil and Brian can find, just so they will “get their miracle”?
i’ve been in meetings where these various schemes and scams take place quite regularly – “honour the pastor” – it is a scam as it’s all about the money, not honouring anyone. “miracle offerings” – I know people who have waited for weeks, months and in some cases years, before they finally realised that there would be no forthcoming miracles. And let’s not forget about the infamous “Tithing sermon” where people are pumped and primed regularly to “give to God” but God somehow ends up being short changed, as Phil and Brian get most of it…
Based on my experiences here in inner Brisbane, the gay community is a force to be reckoned with, financially speaking. They moved into the inner city CBD to live and work, and also the surrounding suburbs. In short, they are “not short of a quid”, and Brian knows this – to him, they are probably just another income stream, and that stream needs to be tapped into, before those people (and their bulging wallets) decide to go smewhere else for their spiritual kicks.
It’s all about the money folks, and not the saving of anyone’s soul, and if they are allowed to sit “in church” without any faithful gospel message of repentence being presented to them, then their future in terms of an eternity with Christ is most uncertain. It is not impossible that some of them may stumble upon a real gospel message, but this would be by default and not by design.
They too, could be offered prominent positions, only to be used up and burnt out like Mr Hatch has said, and then there would be another steady stream of burnt out and financially broke people, exiting the Hillsong scene. May God have mercy on their souls – my prayer for them is that they meet the real Jesus Christ, before Brian has the opportunity to present them with the blow up dummy model…
@ Austin – interesting article:
“HOMOSEXUALITY, MEGACHURCHES, AND ANDY STANLEY”
Keynote speaker at the recent Presence 2014 along with Brian Houston was Louie Giglio. The Giglios were members of Andy Stanley’s North Point Community Church for 13 years until they started Passion City Church.
As you may already know, organizers of President Barack Obama’s second inauguration announced the selection of Giglio to deliver the benediction at the ceremony. However in a mid-1990’s sermon, Giglio called homosexuality a sin, declared that legalizing gay marriage would risk “absolutely undermining the whole order of our society”, and asked his listeners to “lovingly but firmly respond to the aggressive agenda” of gay activists. He was “disinvited” from praying though, after it was discovered he had delivered that sermon.
In a statement Giglio said the following:
“I am honored to be invited by the President to give the benediction at the upcoming inaugural on January 21. Though the President and I do not agree on every issue, we have fashioned a friendship around common goals and ideals, most notably, ending slavery in all its forms.”
“Due to a message of mine that has surfaced from 15-20 years ago, it is likely that my participation, and the prayer I would offer, will be dwarfed by those seeking to make their agenda the focal point of the inauguration. Clearly, speaking on this issue has not been in the range of my priorities in the past fifteen years. Instead, my aim has been to call people to ultimate significance as we make much of Jesus Christ.”
“Neither I, nor our team, feel it best serves the core message and goals we are seeking to accomplish to be in a fight on an issue not of our choosing, thus I respectfully withdraw my acceptance of the President’s invitation. I will continue to pray regularly for the President, and urge the nation to do so. I will most certainly pray for him on Inauguration Day.”
“Our nation is deeply divided and hurting, and more than ever need God’s grace and mercy in our time of need.”
In the middle of his statement is this interesting sentence:
“Clearly, speaking on this issue has not been in the range of my priorities in the past fifteen years.”
In my opinion, it seems that NOT “speaking on this issue” has brought us further down the ever-widening road that’s leading people to destruction.
During this time the Giglio’s were members of Andy Stanley’s North Point church, has this had an impact on Giglio’s worldview today?
How different it could have been if while being centre-stage historically,(i.e. withdrawing from praying at the inauguration), with his statement Giglio could have proclaimed the saving gospel to all sinners including homosexuals, showing the world that reputation and standing is only of value before our great and glorious Saviour.
As someone commented at the time he was “strangely silent”.
Do you think that there’s a huge problem brewing – these gentleman are all now running in the same circuit, preaching at each other’s events/churches.
@Berean – thanks for the link and the extra info. I’m not up on all of these characters, especially some of the international ones, or the ministries that expose them.
There’s a “church” just 2 blocks down the road from me, that openly invites locals to a weekly “meditation” meeting. This meeting is slated as a church activity – no one is simply hiring the hall and handing the keys back in afterwards. It’s the church folks themselves who organise this one.
This notice is placed publicly on the notice board just outside the main shopping centre for one and all to see. Now if the New Age meditation class weren’t bad enough (there’s no mention of Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour at all on the same notice…) the minister there is openly gay, although he states for the record that he’s not practising.
How can the “church’ ask the government to ban gay marriage, when the man in the pulpit says that he’s gay, and that this is OK with God!?
Here’s a quote from their website:
“Wednesday Night Meditation 6pm
Looking for a time of stillness in your week?
The Meditation group meets each Wednesday, just a few minutes before 6:00 pm. Each session includes 30 minutes of silence for individual meditation and begins with a short introduction. A cup of tea or coffee is available at the end, with time for a chat. On the first Wednesday of each month, a bring-and-share dinner also follows the meditation session.”
Other New Age buzz words such “community, diversity, inclusive, etc” are bandied about their small website, but there’s enough information there to say that htis church is already a gonner.
Not only is this a meditation event (there is no mention of prayer or Bible study meetings each week) which is approved by the minister, but once a month there is a fork tea too – definitely a church social event. The world must shake its head in confusion and dismay when it sees such things advertised.
Standards even once upheld in these dead mainline denominations are rapidly declining. Soon such “churches” will be little more than religious social clubs (complete with indoor bowls and bus trips) if they aren’t that far gone already.
Maybe this trend is a commonplace occurrence, and this is what may cause others to take licence and do the same, “because every other church is doing it” including Hillsong? And maybe whatever small vestiges of Christianity that remain within the glass house are rapidly declining too, just like their mainline alternatives?
““Clearly, speaking on this issue has not been in the range of my priorities in the past fifteen years.” Good one..Imagine if Jesus Christ returned and said: “Well…i did say that…but it was a long time ago”. Let’s face it..Hillsong disputes/changes what is sin and disputes what the Holy bible declares as sin. Hillsong sins are poverty, not having a good dentist, not having a good taxation writeoff, not applying for government grants, not having botox, not being able to wear Valentino suits or acting like a giddy teenage girl at a ‘colour’ conference when you are well over 50.
@ thetruth – not sure if you have the time but there’s a very good review of a very bad sermon given by Brian Houston at Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church last year. A link to the transcript is under the clip. It’s fascinating to hear/read the twists and turns and heresy two-stepping going on here….
When the Holy bible is read and thought upon correctly, as Chris has done..it is a wonderful thing. But if it is mangled then used in conjunction with the lawless ‘message translation’ it is confusing, chaotic and deceptive, as houston demonstrates. Such a huge difference.
And for educational purposes here is a direct contrast to Hillsong’s Seeker-Sensitive, Charismatic type sermons on “walking in the Spirit”.
How I wish I had read/ listened to this type of preacher when I was young in the faith. So scripture-centred, logical in thinking, and easy-to-understand.
@mrhatch May 2nd – That’s a good one! I’d never actually thought of what might constitute a ‘Hillsong sin’.
I suppose you could add to that list:
‘having an old bomb car, not having a slick lawyer to cover your tracks or threaten your detractors, meeting in rented premises rather than your own mega church ‘cathedral’, failing to pander to rich and influential people for the benefit of the “church” (and its coffers – that would be a Cardinal sin).
Failing to bow low to the ground when in the presence of these “great men and women of God” (definitely a Mortal sin…) not to mention failing to tithe regularly – now that would demand excommunication from all branch offices – ahem, I mean all local churches, within the movement…
You may think that I am just being faceitious here, but these are the ‘unwritten rules’ of such places – this is how a successful member of a prosperity gospel church is expected to live – to embrace certain things on the ‘list’ and to definitly avoid others…
All cult groups have a list of unwritten rules, and may God help those who disobey or simply ignore them… they will find themselves being shunned and isolated very quickly, and lies will be made up and passed around as to “why that young family had to suddenly up and leave church…”
Seen it all before folks…
@ Austin – an event on this weekend with Louie Giglio (he sure gets around), and among the “lab” speakers? And some seriously mislead speakers, surprised to see Tullian Tchvidjian sharing a platform with Mark “Circle-Maker” Batterson among others…
Phileena Heuertz, founding partner of Gravity, a Center for Contemplative Activism, has spent her life in social justice work among the world’s poor. A member of the New Friar movement, for nearly 20 years she and her husband Chris served with Word Made Flesh in more than 70 countries building community among victims of human trafficking, survivors of HIV and AIDS, abandoned children and child soldiers and war brides.
Phileena and Chris founded Gravity in 2012 to support the development of Christian consciousness in the 21st century, by making contemplative practice accessible to individuals, communities and organizations who engage the challenging social justice perils of our time.
Named “Outstanding Alumni” by Asbury University and one of Outreach magazine’s “30 Emerging Influencers Reshaping Leadership,” Phileena believes that contemplative spirituality is crucial to authentic, creative, liberating social change.
Phileena is a member of the Red Letter Christians and known for her provocative theological narrative, Pilgrimage of a Soul (IVP 2010).
A Red Letter Christian? Tony Campolo belongs to that group.
“Phileena believes that contemplative spirituality is crucial to authentic, creative, liberating social change.”
Really? Does that mean she’s contemplating on the Word of God as written in Joshua 1:8 “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
Or is she really saying that “experiencing God” aside His word can be found through meditation?
And Austin – I have to laugh. I found out that C3CW/HillsongChurchwatch “nemesis” Steve/Facelift has alluded to me through a comment as this : “I just had this image of ‘matron’ being a queen bee tended by drones as she gives birth to Calvinists.”
I find this really very funny as I’m often a bit worried that I’m actually “giving birth” to Lutherans as I consistently recommend the mighty Lutheran theologian/pirate/pastor Chris Rosebrough!
Well Berean, aren’t you just a naughty little girl now…? I spent a few days over at “Steve’s” blogsite, just so I could ‘tidy up a few loose ends’. I won’t be going back for a while though – enough of his nonsense for now. I saw him calling you the “Matrix” – well looks to me like he swallowed the red pill and fell down the rabbit hole… again…
As for being the ‘Queen Bee’, well, I don’t think that the description suits you. You are just a nice lady in the Lord, who cares enough about her brethren, to the point of exposing the error of Balaam’s gang – those who would sell Jesus for money over and over again… and prophecy falsely in doing so.
I spent 2 months in Wollongong years ago, boarding with a retired bee keeper. He had about 20 hives along the side of his house next to the local creek. I learned a lot from that old timer.
Even with my protective gear on, I would get stung 6 or 7 times when ever we went out to ‘rob’ the hives. Believe you me, the workers are the ones to watch out for, not the drones – most bees Downunder are descended from the Italian bee, and it can attack rather viciously, but it does produce good honey. You get used to being stung.
What concerns me more are the wasps, (White Anglo Saxon Pentecostals?) and how they can sting you badly, but produce nothing but paper made cells? They are more than capable of invading a bee hive, and killing the workers, as well as the Queen and also robbing the hive of its honey and pollen.
Can’t you just imagine those wasps trying to gain entry at the doorway to the hive?
“Look mate – I’m legit – I’ve got 6 leggs, a three part body complete with black and yellow stripes, and 2 sets of wings. What more proof do you want?” And the silly unsuspecting drones let them in – and then that’s the end of it… sounds like some “churches” that have been invaded recently, doesn’t it? When the wasps took over, they killed the life that was inside, robbed it of every good thing, and then proceeded to masquerade as bees… buzzzzzzzz
@ Austin – most of where I’m coming from is personal experience (22 years), not opinion. And another very real problem I’m seeing is the lack of support, spiritual and emotional, for other “refugees”. They often find themselves without a support base as they’re too hurt to trust another church.
Being shunned once you leave these churches can be a major issue too, causing even more pain. This can take years to get over and find strength to move on, which is why I’m glad to hear there may be a list of churches listed here and on C3CW where people can find a safe haven.
As long as they’re prepared to research, visit, ask questions of the pastors, and as Chris Rosebrough suggests in a link above, “don’t just have an open heart, have an open bible”.
We were blessed to find mature ministers, wonderful humble men, only too pleased to pray with, and for us as we exited out of our former church. And we have seen the Lord move powerfully through their faithful prayers.
These same humble men fellowship with the congregation, and don’t separate themselves in the “green rooms” of their churches as the vision-casting CEO pastors do, often fellowshipping exclusively with the “elite/celebrity” speakers and patronising the wealthy “contributors”.
There is a very real community of churches out there that share the good news in a rather old-fashioned way by today’s standards.
We’re becoming convinced this is where the church is really growing.
Berean, I accept that your input is by and large your testimony – and the difficulties that may come with sharing some of that online. Me too. It isn’t always easy to talk about things that happened in the past, but for me, it is all about helping a younger generation to avoid the pitfalls, and to also encourage them to get past any hurts from their former involvments. Sometimes we are forced to disclose some of the sordid dealings that occur inside the false prophet churchesof our day, but they must be exposed and that is the thing they fear the most – exposure and scrutiny.
There are many people out there, who, as you say, don’t have the necessary support during the hard tmes, when they first break away from their cultish involvments. They are still in shock, and in many cases, partly in denial about what has happened to them at the hands of former brethren.
When I went through my own “christian cult” experience during the latter half of the 1980’s I lost a lot too – upon leaving the commune forever, I was ridiculed and almost chased out of town by cult members who were dogging my tracks, I had to flee from one church to another and one job to another to avoid them, I lost people who I had fellowshipped with for years – my father died in the aftermath and I lost a small business venture due to the efforts of a con man that I’d met in another church.
It took me 6 years to recover and regain any semblance of normality after I escaped from the “Farmily” as it was known in the town. I was on edge, and didn’t have a lot of help during those early days. But good pastors and strong churches (of differing flavours and viewpoints,) came alongside and took me in, and gave me much needed help during my road to recovery. I’ll never forget them, even though some have passed on and others are in retirement.
Thank God for good people who have a shepherd’s heart, who have laid down their lives for the sheep, and who have access to green pastures and still waters for their lost and hurting people to lay down in for a time…
Austin perhaps a mockingbird is a good description of some of those wasps?
Thinker, thanks for that one – it is a more than adequate analogy of what happens when people get “churched” but they don’t get saved. The beehive analogy is an old one that I came up with years ago, but I’ve not had a good venue for sharing it until now.
I’m sure that’s why Jesus used parables a lot, as the people could relate tot he natural world around them, and yet the true meanings of many of his teachings were hidden from the Pharisees. They couldn’t recognise them as being spiritual at all, as they weren’t shrouded in religious terminology.
I can just imagine the kind of things they said about him behind closed doors…
One more thing about the meditation stuff – it is usually underpinned by the works of some so called “Christian Mystics” like Madame Guyon, or worse still, Jane Lead and it is very sickly sweet mumbo jumbo, but it is not the gospel and it always causes the participants to centre on themselves and not Christ.
It actually takes the focus off Jesus and places it on self, and that is idolatry. The program looks harmless, and there may even be a perceived benefit, but it is very insidious as it wends its way through the congregation – that’s why there’s no prayer or Bible study. Meditation on self is better than thoughts about Jesus.
Thanks for the restof the inof – very informative, so i’ll just buzz off and go and have a read of it…
Some good advice here….
Berean, thanks for the link. I’m aware of the Cultwatch website and have recomended their aritcles “How Cults Work” and “How Pastors Get Rich” before, but hadn’t seen the one you are referencing.
I had discussed with TNP last week about doing something similar, and may still pursue that, but they seem to have covered most of the bases. Finding such a place is getting harder though, and there are so many churches that I can’t go to, because I know too much about them…
It’s not their “imperfections” that are a turn off, as no situation will be perfect, but many of the smaller local churches are currently being ‘cloned’ after the emergent model, whether they are of Charismatic or Reformed leanings matters little, so it is in the “too hard” basket for now.
Small house churches can be just as dangerous too, as some of them have mentioned the emergent buzzwords and ideas on their blogsites here in Brisbane. They seem rather innocuous, but they can be engaging in contemplative nonsense, or some form or other of “Christian Mysticism”, and can also be subject to the mainline teachings such as Word of Faith and or Latter Rain influences, as well as the “false apostle and prophet” syndrome…
I attend a very small IFB (independent Fundamentalist Baptist church) in the Gladstone QLD district. It is very conservative (took me a while to get used to the KJV bible too) but it is very Gospel, faith in Christ focused, “will call a spade a dirty spade if it is” type of church. Exactly the opposite to seeker-sensitive churches in fact.
I have heard Baptist churches can vary a great deal depending on who’s in charge. The Adelaide one I attended was pretty good too. One pastor there was a little too feelings-oriented for my liking but I think I am hyper-alert to that tendency, being a recovering EX Charismatic.
Thinker, thanks for sharing that. I have met some IB folks before, and have found that they can vary from hardliners, to moderates (which doesn’t mean that they have compromised or anything,) but some IBers have very strong views on quite a range of topics, and while others may share those views, they have a somewhat different emphasis – preaching might be one, and evangelism another, or just which fundamentals are more important to them than others. I’m not judging them, I’m just saying that I’ve notice the differences between them over the years.
I’ve been reading the KJV Bible for most of my Christian life – it’s not so much about the translation that is important for me, it’s the text that the translation came from which I regard as being authentic or not. Many new Bibles use modern English that’s easy to understand, but the textual quality of their source documents leaves a lot to be desired.
If you take the watering down of Bible translations to an extreme, you end up with “Bibles” like the Message, which don’t even qualify as a half baked paraphrase, IMHO.
I don’t think that worship of God can be totally devoid of emotion or expression, but caution has to be exercised to ensure that what is happening in a meeting is orderly, Biblical and of benefit to the participants, but not dry, religious or legal. Worship of God has to have some livliness about it, without people going overboard…
lets face the facts here, the church is being run like a company, and the church is treating church members as customers and consumers.
hillsong said people are their greatest resourse, they are using christians as resources. they chew people up and spit them back out again.
1 corinthians 9:18 what is my reward? verliy that, when i preach the gospel, i may make the gospel of christ without charge, that i abuse not the power of the gospel.
2 corinthians 11:7-8 have i committed an offence in abasing myself that ye might be exalted, because i have preached to you the gospel of god freely? i robbed other churches, taking wages of them, to do you service.
lets face it here, these mega churches are nothing but money changers john 2:14-16.
so many christians are taken in by then.
lets face it the sheep are feeding the shepherds with all their time, money, and their whole life.
galatians 1:6-9 they are preaching another gospel. 2 corinthians 11:4 they are preaching another jesus.
I’m just wondeirng Mr Hatch, if there is another motive in woowing the gay community over to join Hillsong? Yes, you are right – it is all about chewing people up and then spitting them back again – after they’ve sucked them dry – seen that one before, many times.
I cast my mind back to the Gulf War when the term “human shield” became prominent – public buildings such as hospitals, schools and refugee shelters were populated by outsiders who stood there alongside the locals and more or less declared that an attack on them, was an attack on their countries of origin as well.
It may not have been as effective a strategy as the organisers had planned, but in principle, I’m beginning to wonder if Brian is subtly embracing these people so that they can become his “human shields” – in other words, any attack on Hillsong et al, is automatically perceived as an attack on the “church” that has them in membership?
There could be reppercussions for any would be attacker – labeled as a “hater” while Hillsong enjoyed the protections accorded the gay community re discrimination, vilification etc by default. I just hope that the gays see right through any potential missuse or abuse of their civil rights, and stay right away from all mega churches – for good!
This may sound a little far fetched and alarmist, but it worked in the war to a certain extent, so why not “chew them up” in this manner also. I wouldn’t put it past them…
“I’m beginning to wonder if Brian is subtly embracing these people so that they can become his “human shields” – in other words, any attack on Hillsong et al, is automatically perceived as an attack on the “church” that has them in membership?”
Sorry folks, that part was poorly worded, it should have read:
I’m beginning to wonder if Brian is subtly embracing these people so that they can become his “human shields” – in other words, any attack on Hillsong et al, is automatically perceived as an attack on the gays that are in membership, and is therefore subject to antidiscrimination and villification laws?
We have updated the resources in the above article.
One important article we have added is from Albert Mohler. He mentioned a man named Tony Jones in his piece. Tony Jones is a very dangerous liberal teacher and is not a very trust-worthy man when it comes to the scriptures. His emergent teachings has done serious damage to the churches in America and are very popular among the churches of Australia.
In saying this, Mohler’s observation on Jones’ article is worth posting here just in case Patheos takes it down. (Things on the internet have a tendency to disappear.)
Why There’s No “Third Way” on Gay Marriage
May 20, 2014 By Tony Jones 43 Comments
Rachel & Ratchet and Courtney & Tony are legally married on 11/11/13. Photo by Caroline Yang
Every week now, there’s news about gay marriage. Today it’s that Oregon is allowing same sex marriages. Last week it was the Religious Broadcasters Association forcing Multnomah Publishers to resign from the trade group.
It strikes close to home for many of us as well. I regularly hear from readers who wither A) are gay and can’t get married in their state, or B) have recently gotten married and are overjoyed. In my own personal case, last month I lost out on a potential six-figure grant from a church foundation exclusively because of my affirmation of marriage equality — someone connected to the foundation didn’t like my stance.
I’ve got a few friends to graciously and tenaciously hang on to the idea that a third way can be found on this issue, a middle ground between affirming gay marriage and condemning it. And I agree with them, to a point. I know many churches that are studying the issue — the church council is reading books and discussing it; the pastor is offering Wednesday night classes, etc. Those are practices of a middle ground, but that middle ground is necessarily temporary.
That’s because the same-sex marriage debate in the church is always determined by practices. Let’s take World Vision, for example. For three years, the WV board of directors studied and prayed about the issue, and no one complained. But as soon as they decided to institute a new practice — that is, hiring legally married gay persons in their U.S. offices — conservative Christians went postal. Spokesmen tweeted, pastors called, and recording artists threatened. In less than 48 hours, WV reversed their decision.
The same goes in church. A denomination can study the issue for years as the PC(USA) has. But at some point, they will take a vote. Then they either will or will not allow their clergy to perform same-sex weddings. It’s at that point that congregations will leave for the conservative ECO denomination (some already have). The UCC, ELCA, and EC(USA) held their votes in the past, the UMC will confront it in the future.
And the same goes for an individual congregation. At some point, every congregation in America will decide either, YES, same-sex marriages will take place in our sanctuary, performed by our clergy; or NO, same-sex marriages will not take place in our sanctuary, performed by our clergy. There is no third way on that. A church either allows same-sex marriages, or it doesn’t.
I’ve heard of cases where a pastor is allowed to perform same-sex weddings, but not on church property. That’s a kind of third way, but it usually takes place without the knowledge of the majority of the congregation. And it is also a temporary (and possibly deceitful) practice.
What I’m saying is that a church or an organization can study the issue in theory, and they can even do so for years. But this isn’t really a “third way” or a “middle ground.” Instead, it is a process. And at some point, that process has to end and practices have to be implemented. At that point, there’s no third way. You either affirm marriage equality in your practices, or you do not.
Source: By Tony Jones, Why There’s No “Third Way” on Gay Marriage, Patheos, http://www.patheos.com/blogs/tonyjones/2014/05/20/why-theres-no-third-way-on-gay-marriage/, Published 20/05/2014. (Accessed 06/06/2014.)
Hi churchwatcher! I love this article because you told me three things that were missed by “yours truly”…First, I failed to notice that conversation that God had with Abraham when He gave them grace…but they did not receive it..you called it love…which is who God is…He cannot be anything else. That’s a GREAT point!
Secondly, you said that “porneo” is a word that means “all kinds of adulteries/fornication. That’s interesting. So Yeshua/Jesus did condemn homosexuality.
Thirdly, I really saw Paul as someone who was confronted with things that are much worse than we are confronted with..specifically (at least for now) sexual acts combined with the worship of idols.
I do disagree with you on the Leviticus scripture: the word for “woman” is wife, not just woman. This was not a “man is allowed sow his seed where he may” type of verse. “laying with a woman” is referring to the conjugal relationship between husband and wife.
Also, I disagree that Yeshua, who is Lord of the Sabbath would ever “change” the law. That sort of defeats your whole argument. If He did something that people of those days and times did not understand, it was because they were following man’s laws…not God’s. Jesus and His Father were one: He would never “split” from His Father. If Yeshua healed on the Sabbath, that is because “sickness” is a form of labor in Hebraic understanding. He was releasing them from the labor of sickness/affliction. I know full well how hard it is to attend to a month long poison ivy caused skin outbreak!
Picking up his bed and going home was a witness to God’s power and Jesus’ divinity. People would naturally ask him why he was carrying his bed on the Sabbath. He would say, “the one they say is the Messiah released me from the labor of my affliction!”