I'm afraid it won't help in today's postings; but let's tee it up. Time to grip and rip!
Good day "Ministers of the Biblical Green." I have two entries for you in the "Mulligan Monday" journal of theological misspeak, doctrinal confusion, and just plain ol' heterodoxy: 1.) "Sainthood: The Pope's Blood Linked to Christ's Blood"; and, 2.) "Rod Parsley, ...'I'm a Christocrat.'" Grab your favorite beverage; find a comfortable chair if you're WIFI; make sure you have your iPaq handy with several Bible translations loaded and ready (for those who still use paper, have your one or two favorite Bibles nearby) and prepare yourself for the severe "slice and hook" of the following articles.
The Blood of JPII - Compared to the Blood of Christ?
1. The late Pope, John Paul II, is being considered for sainthood because of "a link" that some are making between the blood of Christ and JPII's blood. Here is the story: Cardinal Camillo Ruini appeared to have been setting the stage for a possible martyrdom declaration Tuesday when he formally opened the beatification cause for John Paul. Ruini said there was a "decisive" link between John Paul and Jesus Christ based on blood. "John Paul truly spilled his blood in St. Peter's Square on May 13, 1981, and then again, not just his blood but he offered his life during the long years of his illness," Ruini said. "In the end, his suffering and his death, his silent blessing from his window at the end of Easter Mass, were for all of humanity an extraordinary and efficient testimony of Jesus Christ killed and resurrected, of the Christian significance of suffering, death and the force of salvation.
First of all, the Roman idea of sainthood is heretical--nowhere to be found in Scripture. It denies the sole mediatorial work of Jesus Christ interceding for us (1 Tim. 2:5; Rom. 8:34); and it promotes idolatry, where upon confirmation of sainthood, the name of the "blessed" and "beatified" is celebrated in public prayer or in the Mass (the Mass being also a heretical tradition of Romanism thinking the Mass is propitiatory for the recipient). But more importantly, this kind of identification with the sinless Lord Jesus Christ is blasphemous. Sentiment for the departed is one thing. But claiming a dead vicar of the Roman Church is somehow linked directly to Christ in blood spilt, life offered in suffering and death, and that such "offering" is considered to be "the Christian significance of suffering, death and the force of salvation." is hitting the ball beyond "purgatory" (the rough), to being completely "out of bounds" altogether.
Let's be clear: John Paul II having denied the faith, the very gospel of sola fide, sola gratia and solus Christus upon his dying awakened not in glory, but awoke in perdition. Rome heaps further wrath upon wrath by elevating this abhorrent tradition to an unregenerate Pope that they give praise that should be reserved for Christ alone... is unthinkable. This ultimately denies again sola scriptura, for this practice is simply the doctrines of man being represented as the commands of God (cp, Matt. 15:6b-9).
Rod Parsley, "The Christocrat"
2. Parsley, senior pastor of World Harvest Church in Columbus, Ohio and founder of The Center for Moral Clarity, outspoken on the judicial filibuster, the Houses of Worship Freedom of Speech Restoration Act, and outlays in his book, "Silent No More" a call for faith-based co-belligerence (ECB). The list just keeps growing more wide and diverse folks in the number of pastors and evangelicals from all faith constraints that are now joining "the political remedies for moral maladies" bandwagon. (Al Mohler, James Kennedy, Chuck Colson and other ECBers cannot be elated about Parsley's addition to the "ECB political club." The sad thing is, they must find unanimity with Parsley on the social/moral cause agenda, even though biblically they would never have fellowship with a man who is as aberrant as Parsley is on theological essentials. As I have stated before, this is part of the danger of this movement--unity absent of orthodox biblical truth; and unity absent of the gospel.)
Parsley, a devote Word Faith and Health, Wealth, Prosperity advocate and promoter has made an appealing "makeover" of his flamboyant, TBN ranting, "sytle over substance" image and has found more than willing vibrant acceptance from the conservative political mainstream, welcomed by Congressmen and Senators alike, because of his now "new found convictions" that Christians are to get involved in the political process to cure the moral ills facing our nation. Despite his specious doctrinal suasions, he enjoys the favor of mainstream evangelicals: The Honorable Tony Perkins - President, Family Research Council (Dobson); and Pastor Ted Haggard - President, National Association of Evangelicals and Senior Pastor, New Life Church. Both who with glowing praise and endorse Parsley's latest book called, "
Silent No More." Rod Parsley refers to anyone, Christian or not, that will join him in his co-belligerent quest as "value voters." I wonder if Dr. Richard Land with his "iVoters campaign" will partner will Parsley in future events and causes; or maybe even the SBC will find solace in his political convictions and join hands with him in their fight to regain the moral footing in our nation? Never mind his errant theological views, as long as Parsley's right politically on cause and issue, they will overlook everything else. (My prediction: of course they will end up eventually partnering with him--it's unavoidable. This is the "politics of faith" these days.)
In the next few years it would not surprise me if an ecumenical "Center for Theological, Doctrinal and Biblical Tolerance for Cultural Moral Change" is established by all involved in the ECB movement. This kind of thing seems imminent; and it would alter historical biblical Christianity, as we know it, dramatically for generations to come. This movement is far worse than NPP or Open Theism. Why? Because it flies under the theological/biblical radar; it crosses all denominational barriers; it unifies Christians with non-Christians solely on the recovery of traditional family-values; it promotes alliances by making the Christian faith tertiary rather than primary; it offers no biblical foundation for its practice and existence; it is only pragmatic in nature; it confuses patriotism with Christianity; it is currently championed by millions of evangelicals; and all this is happening absent of the gospel, absent of the preaching of God's Word, absent of cross-centered living.
But Mr. Parsley's Mulligan mention is not because of the above (enough worthy evidence presented), but due to his new label for Christians in the culture wars desiring political middle-ground. Here is his claim that he made while being interviewed by Crosswalk.com:
Crosswalk: You've mentioned that you urge both sides of the political spectrum to work together to return America to the vision of the founding fathers. Please talk about some of your bi-partisan efforts.
Parsley: "I told an audience the other day that I'm not a Republican or a Democrat, but a Christocrat (emphasis added). I'm not looking to endorse a candidate; I'm looking for a candidate who will endorse what I believe. Both in my book and on my tour, I speak to both sides of the political spectrum. I take issues that traditionally belong to the Left and commend them to the Right and vice versa. I supposed that makes me difficult to peg, but I've found that being morally correct often means being politically unpredictable. I speak out on poverty, racism, education, as well as on judicial tyranny, abortion and homosexuality. Last year, I launched the Center for Moral Clarity to help educate the church about the important issues of the day, and influence legislation based on biblical standards. We're not a partisan organization by any stretch of the imagination."
He mentions good moral causes worth championing; just the wrong method. I believe these are spritual issues; they believe they are political ones; I believe resolve on these things comes through life-transformation by way of the gospel (2 Cor. 5:15-21; Titus 3:1-8), they believe it is through legislation.
It is notable that Parsley now speaks out on everything from poverty to judicial tyranny in those settings, but is he preaching the gospel as the only hope for resolve in those same venues? So far, I have not discovered this to be the case (Not surprising, this is a typical ECB tactic for political moral reform.) He also claims that he wants to educate the church to "influence legislation based on biblical standards." Once again, he says that but the biblical standards are never developed. These biblical standards: what are they; where are they? Silence. (Parsley has adapted well to ECB thinking.)
But the Mulligan goes to Parsley this week because of his labeling of Christians who are speaking out on political issues as "Christocrats." This is foolish and insulting to the name of Christ. Taking the Lord's name and making it a political identifier is unthinkable. Ladies and gentlemen, stating the obvious, Christ has no political affiliation. And for him to slur His name, and I believe take the Lord's name in vain by such ridiculous twisting and play on terms, is demeaning to the name of our Lord Jesus. It clearly violates The Third Commandment - (the same one they are trying to protect in courthouses to be displayed as a religious wall hanging.) I'm almost certain that Parsley, in some jaded way, thought he was being clever and even honorable by naming himself this. But nonetheless, this should be shocking to our ears to hear Christ's name debased in such a manner. How dare he!?!
The only positive thing when it comes to Parsley's co-belligerent affiliation, is that the more time he spends on politics, the less time he spends prostituting Scripture to promulgate his other erroneous faith claims. But that is very little consolation.
These are two major "club swings" that are really impossible to correct. Romanism isn't in need of a Mulligan, but a whole new set of clubs, balls and game. And Parsley isn't much better. He has diverted attention away from his nefarious and heretical Word/Faith affiliations and doctrine to appeal to evangelicals at their most vunerable and loyal area these days... patriotism; "political involvement for moral resolve." He has figured out that political solutions for "family value causes" among Americans and specifically American evangelicals can really widen ones platform and appeal, add valuable names to the mailing list, and if the cause is right--bring in the donations. Parsley's not stupid; he's dangerous.
That's "Mulligan Monday" for July 18, 2005. Let me know your thoughts. Walk the fairways... you see so much than when riding a cart.
PS - And remember, as a dear friend of mine is fond of saying: "you won't go liberal by reading your Bible." And if I may add, you certainly won't be given over to Romanist heresy or to evangelical pragmatic insipid Reconstructionism by reading your Bible either.
May we keep on faithfully in "the once for all delivered to the saints faith" in all things... for Christ and His Word are the answers. I wonder what all these guys will do if Hillary becomes President in 2008? Well, that's for another day.
Monday, July 18, 2005
I'm afraid it won't help in today's postings; but let's tee it up. Time to grip and rip!