Friday Church News Notes
Volume 19, Issue 26 - June 29, 2018
Graphical Edition
The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, though this does not imply an endorsement.
The Shack
THE SHACK AUTHOR PREACHES UNIVERSALISM (Friday Church News Notes, June 29, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - William Paul Young, author of the popular and influential novel The Shack, said in a recent interview that those who die without faith in Jesus Christ will have further opportunities for salvation. He says, “Romans itself says that death can’t separate you from the love of God. ... I don’t think death is our damnation. I think that Jesus is both our salvation and rightful judge but that judgment is intended for our good, not our harm” (“The Shack author on God the Father, sexual sin and the afterlife,” EternityNews.com, Australia, Jun. 20, 2018). Young is a false teacher who is saying what many people want to hear. He is one of those “heaps of teachers” described in the prophecy of 2 Timothy 4:3-4 who scratch the ears of those who want a kind of Christianity that allows them to live according to their lusts. William Young abuses and twists Scripture terribly, ignoring context which is the most fundamental rule of interpretation, and taking promises that refer to a believer in Jesus Christ and wrongly applying them to the unbeliever. Jesus Christ Himself left no doubt about the destiny of the unbeliever. “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him” (John 3:36). Fundamentally, The Shack is about redefining God. Young has said that the book is for those with “a longing that God is as kind and loving as we wish he was” (interview with Sherman Hu, Dec. 4, 2007). He is referring to the desire on the part of the natural man for a God who loves “unconditionally,” does not require repentance, does not judge sin, and does not make men feel guilty for what they do. The Shack depicts a false god, yet it has been endorsed by Pat Robertson’s 700 Club, CCM artist Michael W. Smith, sports star Tim Tebow, Gayle Erwin of Calvary Chapel, James Ryle of the Vineyard churches, Gloria Gaither (who hosted a reading of The Shack as reported in the New York Times), Mark Lowry (former singer with the Gaithers), Eugene Peterson, author of The Message, Wade Burleson, pastor of Southern Baptist Emmanuel Baptist Church of Enid, Oklahoma, and many others. In October 2017, the Gospel Music Association’s Dove awards selected The Shack movie as the “inspiration film of the year.” William Young was one of the speakers at the February 2009 National Pastor’s Convention in San Diego, sponsored by Zondervan and InterVarsity Fellowship. “Evangelical” Christianity is well on its way to total apostasy. (For more about William Paul Young and The Shack, see “The Shack’s Cool God,” www.wayoflife.org/database/shackscoolgod.html)

ARKANSAS PASTOR CALLS HELL A “FAIRYTALE” (Friday Church News Notes, June 22, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “Popular Arkansas Pastor,” Christian Post, Jun. 21, 2018: “Timothy Rogers, a popular Arkansas evangelist and singer, is coming under fire after he recently declared at a funeral that hell is a ‘fairytale’ no different than Santa Claus. Rogers, 38, who leads the Prince of Peace church in Blytheville, made his comments during a more than hour-long presentation at the funeral of a young man he said he did not know but was of the same generation. ‘Is he [the young man who passed] going to hell? Did he accept Jesus as his …? See, y’all have been sold a lie. You’ve been bamboozled. All that stuff is a fairytale. To believe in Hell means you have to believe in Santa Claus. ... Hell is an imaginary place.’ In his sermon, Rogers explained that life is a gift freely given to man by God to ‘do whatever you want to do with your life.’ He described the Bible as a manual on how to live life successfully. The choices made by individuals in their personal lives, he said, will determine whether they experienced heaven or hell. ‘Hell is what you create,’ he said, to shouts of ‘c'mon pastor.’”

ANOTHER TESTIMONY ABOUT THE DANGER OF MEDICAL QUACKERY (Friday Church News Notes, June 22, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - I am also thankful for warnings against quackery. We have a family in our church where the godly wife had a type of cancer that was easily curable by medical science. However, she decided to go with an alternative/unconventional ‘medical’ cure, which worked no better than a placebo, and she died from the easily curable cancer. Now her husband is raising their family and many of the children are not doing very well. It is tragic. We also have others in the church who have unnecessary ailments, e. g, children who have mouths full of cavities because their parents are against fluoride toothpaste, children that have gotten sick from diseases because parents refuse to vaccinate, etc., that are (usually) not life-threatening but do not bring honor to the name of Christ. When Christians fall for quackery, the world can easily conclude that the (massive) evidence for the Bible must be like the (non-extant) evidence for quack medicine, since Christians are practicing both.” (For the studies about quack diets, see the book The Bible and Diet, which is available for free reading at www.wayoflife.org/free_ebooks/.)

STEPS TO A STRONGER CHURCH FOR THE 21ST CENTURY (Friday Church News Notes, June 29, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - We are pleased to announce the new free video series “Steps to a Stronger Church for the 21st Century.” It deals with the following subjects: a church that is stronger in leadership, prayer, salvation, membership, God’s standards for workers, evangelism, church planting, and world missions. The series was preached at our ninth annual Bible conference in the Philippines in January, hosted by Berean Bible Baptist Church of Cavite, near Manila, pastored by our dear friend Medel Barrera. The series was video recorded and is now available online for free viewing and download. It is very encouraging to see some of the churches in the Philippines moving in a stronger biblical direction, which is exactly opposite of the direction most Independent Baptists are heading.
To view the videos online (Way of Life, Vimeo, Youtube) or to download, visit -
https://www.wayoflife.org/stronger-church/
The audio files can be accessed at the following page -
https://www.wayoflife.org/audiosermons/

TWO GENERATIONS OF BAPTIST PASTORS: THE CONSERVATIVE AND THE EMERGING (Friday Church News Notes, June 29, 2018, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - Charles Stanley and his son Andy represent two generations of Southern Baptist pastors, one “conservative” and one emerging. Charles, 85, is the long-time senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Atlanta, while Andy, 60, is the very cool pastor of North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, an Atlanta suburb. One of their fundamental differences is the view of homosexuality. Charles believes that homosexuality is a sin and that homosexual marriage is absolutely wrong, based on the Bible, while Andy holds a broader, more “tolerant” view based on a “consensus.” In the book The New Rules for Love, Sex and Dating, Andy says, “My purpose in writing this book was not to push a religious or even my Christian agenda.” So much for God’s command to “preach the Word” (2 Timothy 4:2)! At an event in April 2015 promoting his “change maker’s” organization called Catalyst, Andy said, “We need to decide, regardless of what you think about this topic [homosexuality], no more students are going to feel like they have to leave the local church because they’re same-sex attracted or because they’re gay. That ends with us” (“Dr. Charles Stanley and Son Andy,” The Gospel Herald, Apr. 23, 2015). “Conservative” Charles Stanley built the bridges to the emerging church on which the second generation is treading, particularly by his broad-tent SBC philosophy and acceptance of contemporary worship music. I visited First Baptist of Atlanta in the 1990s and they were rocking out even then. Many older independent Baptist preachers are building the same bridges and the result will be the same. Already many of the younger independent Baptist preachers have crossed the bridges of compromise and are walking in dangerous territory. It is the Charles Stanleys and their “soft,” non-confrontational approach that laid the foundation for the Andy Stanleys of this generation. The Charles Stanleys preached the Word, but without the rebuke demanded by God (2 Timothy 4:2). It was not what they said that was wrong, so much as what they neglected to say. This is exactly what characterizes a large percentage of Independent Baptist pulpits today, and the fruit will be the same.

THE BIBLE IS THE SUFFICIENT AND SOLE AUTHORITY FOR FAITH AND PRACTICE (Friday Church News Notes, June 29, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Since the Bible is able to make the man of God perfect in all good works, nothing else is needed, not extra-biblical visions or prophecies, not extra-biblical traditions or councils, not extra-biblical science, not human philosophies, not miracles and mystical experiences, not Hollywood movies. “Let us, then, study and prize the Bible. It is a holy and a safe guide. It has conducted millions along the dark and dangerous way of life, and has never led one astray. The human mind, in its investigations of truth, has never gone beyond its teachings; nor has man ever advanced into a region so bright that its light has become dim, or where it has not thrown its beams of glory on still far distant objects” (Barnes). 2 Timothy 3:16-17 changed the entire course of my life in 1973 when I understood that the Bible alone as the infallible revelation God has given to mankind and I submitted to it as the complete Word of God. Prior to that point in my life, I was guided by a hodgepodge of philosophy and religion, a little Mao Tse Tung, a little Paramahansa Yogananda, a little Ayn Rand, a little Hermann Hesse, a little of the Southern Baptist Sunday School lessons from my childhood, and a lot of the Beatles and Bob Dylan and the Who and the Rolling Stones, combined with a heaping dose of my own opinions. On one glorious evening in the summer of 1973, I turned my back on all of that to receive the Bible alone is my guide in life and Jesus Christ alone as my Lord and Saviour, and I have never regretted it, for I found satisfaction and rest for my soul.

CONCLUSION: The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature’s Fundamental Baptist Information Service. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, but this obviously does not imply an endorsement. We trust that our readers will not be discouraged. It is God’s will that we know the times (1 Ch. 12:32; Mat. 16:3) and that we be as wise as serpents and harmless as doves. The News Notes remind us that the hour is very late, and we need to be ready for the Lord’s coming. Are you sure that you are born again? Are you living for Christ? “And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof” (Rom. 13:11-14).

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Distributed by Way of Life Literature., publisher of Bible Study Materials and reports for Fundamental Baptists and other fundamentalist, Bible-believing Christians. Established in 1974, Way of Life Literature is a fundamental Baptist preaching and publishing ministry based in Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. Brother Cloud lives in South Asia where he has been a church planting missionary since 1979. OUR GOAL IN THIS PARTICULAR ASPECT OF OUR MINISTRY (REPORTS AND FRIDAY NEWS) IS NOT DEVOTIONAL. IS TO PROVIDE INFORMATION TO ASSIST PREACHERS IN THE PROTECTION OF THE CHURCHES IN THIS APOSTATE HOUR.

David Cloud, Way of Life Literature, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org

The Way of Life Literature preaching and publishing ministry is based at Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. A mail stop is maintained in Port Huron, Michigan.

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