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Friday Church News Notes (July 22, 2016)
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“Welcome to Trinity Baptist Church... otherwise known as a Pokémon GO Gym”

CHURCHES EMBRACING POKÉMON AS “OUTREACH” TOOL (Friday Church News Notes, July 22, 2016,, 866-295-4143) - Pokémon Go has become a craze. Almost overnight it has become the most popular mobile game in American history, increasing the stock market value of part owner Nintendo more than 50%. “Pokémon Go, the newest iteration of the nearly 20-year-old Pokémon franchise, engages players in an ‘augmented reality’ where they try to find and capture Pokémons hidden throughout the real world. The Australian Business Review has suggested that it may be a ‘watershed moment’ in the development of virtual reality” (“Pokémon Go craze drawing gamers to church,” Baptist Press News, July 15, 2016). The game “uses the mobile phone’s camera to create the perception that the Pokémon characters are actually in front of the players.” Two men recently fell off a cliff near San Diego while engaged in the game. Some churches are even embracing it is as an..

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Biblical Shallowness (July 21, 2016)

Biblical Shallowness
There is a frightful lack of biblical knowledge among members of the average Independent Baptist church, in my experience. Many pastors have admitted to me that the majority of their people are not serious Bible students.

It is impossible to understand the Bible properly and grow in understanding of it effectively without training in such things as principles of interpretation, Bible history and geography, Bible culture, and theology or Bible doctrine, yet most members of Independent Baptist churches are grossly lacking in such things.

Most are like a church member I talked with recently who told me that his Bible reading is “hit and miss” and that he had no Bible dictionary, concordance, or commentary, had never..

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Maligning Warning and Reproof (July 20, 2016)

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.. Another reason why I am convinced that most Independent Baptist churches will be emerging within 10-20 years is the maligning of warning and reproof.

A friend in North Carolina wrote recently to give the following observation in regard to the many independent Baptist churches he has visited over the years. The all caps are in the original.

“I don’t think 98% of Independent Baptist churches have ANY type of warning ministry in their preaching and teaching. I wouldn't be surprised if a large number of pastors have NEVER given a warning about anything or any person. I know that you know some preachers who giving warnings. But out in the rest of the Baptist world there is NO warning. Very sad. I’m talking about SIMPLE statements here, not a ministry of warning.” 

Not only do most independent Baptist preachers not give warnings, they believe that warnings are largely unnecessary and...

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Preachers Following the Crowd (July 19, 2016)

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It is human nature to follow the crowd. We do this as children. We do it as teens. We do it as adults. We even do it as preachers. A major motive in this phenomenon is the fear of man, which is so often and staunchly condemned in Scripture. “The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe” (Proverbs 29:25). “And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, BUT SECRETLY FOR FEAR OF THE JEWS...” (John 19:38).

“For before that certain came from James, he [Peter] did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, FEARING THEM WHICH WERE OF THE CIRCUMCISION” (Galatians 2:12). If Joseph of Arimathaea and Peter were susceptible to the fear of man and were inclined to be crowd followers, it is obvious that there is no preacher who cannot be tempted with this sin...

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The Problem with Pokémon (July 18, 2016)

by Pastor David L. Brown, Ph.D. - Here We Go Again with Pokémon Go - Pokémon Go becomes global craze as game overtakes Twitter for US users! Pokémon moves into the age of augmented reality using an app on your smartphone. An article in the online edition for the July 12, 2016 theguardian fills us in on some of the details. Pokémon Go takes “gamers out of the living room and on to the streets as they compete to capture, train and battle Pokémon characters using their mobile phones.” The goal is the same as the card game and video game; players battle and capture the “pocket monsters” in a quest to become the greatest Pokémon trainers. However, unlike the earlier video and card games, “players move around the real world looking for Pokémon to capture.” Quoting the article again - “When the app is opened, it shows a map of the area around the player..

Friday Church News Notes (July 15, 2016)

ONE WORLD CHURCH ON THE MOVE (Friday Church News Notes, July 15, 2016,,, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “300 denominations meet for ecumenical gathering in Munich,”, July 5, 2016: “Some 1,700 Christians from around 300 denominations have met in Munich for a ‘Together in Europe’ gathering of the Ecumenical Congress promoting unity between Catholics, Protestants and Evangelicals. In a meeting supported by Pope Francis and Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew I, leaders of the Catholic Church, the Anglican Church, several Orthodox Churches, Protestant denominations and free evangelical denominations including some Baptists and Pentecostals debated for three days about how to walk towards ‘encounter, reconciliation and ..

Ignorance About Important Issues (July 14, 2016)

“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6).

Another reason why a large percentage of fundamental Baptist churches will be well down the emerging path in 10-20 years is that there is widespread ignorance about important issues such as contemporary music, New

Evangelicalism, the Southern Baptist Convention, Reformed theology, reconstructionism, charismaticism, Neo-orthodoxy, Darwinian and theistic evolution, contemplative mysticism, and the emerging church.

I recall a veteran Independent Baptist missionary who looked around for a few minutes in my 6,000-volume library. He had no questions and showed zero interest and the only comment he made was negative, because he looked upon serious research as more of a hindrance and a sidetrack than a blessing. The only comment he made was that “we will be held accountable for our time,” and I couldn’t agree more, but time spent in serious Bible study and ministry-related research is time well spent for now and eternity!

The mindset of this missionary is the mindset that has already destroyed a great many Independent Baptist churches both here and around the world, and it is going to destroy..


The Judgment of the Nations (July 13, 2016)

When the Lord returns, He will establish His kingdom in Israel and will rule the world. At that time He will judge the Gentile nations and separate the “sheep” from the “goats.” His sheep will enter the kingdom, but the rejected “goats” will be cast into the lake of fire.

“When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.

“Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we..

Contemporary Christian Music and Homosexuality (July 12, 2016)

In The Gospel Sound, which first appeared in 1971, Anthony Heilbut said, “The gospel church has long been a refuge for gays and lesbians, some of whom grew up to be among the greatest singers and musicians.”

Douglas Harrison, a homosexual who grew up Southern Baptist, said, “... you can’t swing a Dove Award without hitting upon evidence of the longstanding, deep-set presence of queer experience in, and its influence on, Christian music culture at all levels” (“Come Out from among Them,” Religion Dispatches, April 30, 2010).

In 1998, CCM star Kirk Franklin said that “homosexuality ... is a problem today in gospel music--a MAJOR CONCERN--and everybody knows it” (
Church Boy, pp. 49, 50). James Cleveland, who has been called the “King of Gospel,” was a homosexual who died of AIDS.

Is the Bible the Sole Authority for Faith and Practice? (July 10, 2016)

Is the Bible the Sole Authority for Faith and Practice? The Roman Catholic Church Says It Is Not. The Vatican II Council Affirmed That “Both Scripture and Tradition Must Be Accepted and Honoured With Equal Feelings of Devotion and Reverence” (Vatican II Documents,“Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation,” Chap. 2, 9, P. 682). Thus, Rome Has Boldly Exalted Its Traditions to a Status Equal With Holy Scripture. I frequently receive letters and e-mails from Catholics who challenge me about the authority of the Bible. They know that they cannot defend Catholic doctrine strictly from the Bible. If the Bible alone is the authority for faith and practice, it can easily be demonstrated from Scripture that the Catholic Church is false. The authority of the Bible is therefore at the heart of the difference between Roman Catholicism and churches that base their doctrine and practice strictly upon...