Pastor Cho involved in dispute with elders

The Korean Times is reporting that the elders of Yoido Full Gospel Church have questioned emeritus Pastor Cho’s previous commitment to step down from leadership and let Lee Young-hoon take over as senior pastor.  It seems Pastor Cho is having trouble letting go of his empire and would rather give it to his sons.

Perhaps I failed to read that chapter in the New Testament where it states that the church is a family dynasty to be inherited by the children. It is my understanding that the elders should decide after prayer and dependence on the Holy Spirit who the next leader would be.

I can think of several large ministries recently where children have “inherited” their father’s ministries: Crystal Cathedral, Kenneth Copeland Ministries, Marilyn Hickey Ministries, John Hagee’s Cornerstone Church among others. Perhaps today’s celebrity preachers would do well to remember that the church belongs to Jesus Christ, not to them personally and thus it is not theirs to give to their sons.

I found a ‘Jeremiah’!

In an earlier blog post, I asked the question “Where are the Jeremiahs?”  Where are the men of God who stand in the pulpit and pastor churches who actually speak against the heresy that is so pervasive in modern evangelicalism.

I am happy to report that this morning, my pastor Noel Dear, preached a sermon on Matt 7:13-14 ESV

13 “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many.

14 For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.

In the sermon he mentioned universalism and specifically mentioned Rob Bell’s book Love Wins as an example of heresy even if dressed in Christian clothing.

To those who may be disheartened at the lack of clear, authoritative preaching in the church today – please take heart – there are still preachers who speak the truth with boldness.  I’m thankful for my pastor who is doing just that.

John MacArthur one, Rob Bell zero

John MacArthur has done an excellent job in his recent blogs of taking Rob Bell to task for blatant heresy.

Rob Bell is reminiscent of the Rich Young Ruler in Mark 10:17-27. He has a warped view of goodness. He talks as if his own standard of good is the norm, and Bell even suggests that God is not good if He sends people to hell.
Jesus’ reply to the young inquirer (“No one is good except God alone”—v. 18) says God himself alone is the standard of true good, not any creature—certainly not a fallen creature.
The Young Ruler was not saved, nor can any person be who thinks his or her own preferences determine what is truly good. That kind of arrogance reflects a damning egotism.

May I just say “Thank God for John MacArthur.”  It is past time for the leaders of the true evangelical church to stand up and speak out against the heresies of our day.  I would also like to commend Phil Johnson (also of Grace To You Ministries) as well as Albert Mohler of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Sometimes we are all guilty of only criticizing false teachers without taking time to thank those who do stand for the truth and aren’t afraid to call a spade, a spade.  Thank you gentlemen for your courage and faithfulness to the bible.

Wrong Motives in Ministry

4 but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts. 5 For we never came with words of flattery, as you know, nor with a pretext for greed—God is witness. 6 Nor did we seek glory from people, whether from you or from others, though we could have made demands as apostles of Christ. (1 Th 2:4–6 ESV).

Words of flattery – have you ever been approached by someone who makes their living in sales in just a casual conversation and started to feel “handled” as if their interest in you was a setup for a sale?  When that same feeling of manipulation comes in a spiritual area it still carries with it that same sick feeling – that if the person can’t get any money out of you, they will soon move on. Paul’s main point in this section is to avoid such as false teachers.

Pretext for greed – if the main point of any one’s gospel is money and how it should leave your pocket and go into theirs – watch out!  A major red flag should be flying in your spirit man as a warning to avoid such! Biblical teaching on giving should focus on cheerful and willing generosity to those in need.

Seeking glory – does the minister arrive in a limousine with a security detail of fierce looking men in suits with earpieces? Is the celebrity status of the minister greater than the message they preach?  To be famous is not a sin, but to act like a Hollywood diva is.  True ministers of the gospel are humble and approachable.

Paul gives us three key things to look for when evaluating ministers.  Unfortunately, we have far too many who fall into the above three areas of sin.  Beware of false teachers.

Dear Rob Bell: Have you read the bible?

By now, everyone has heard of the controversy surrounding Rob Bell’s latest book Love Wins.  Since I haven’t read the book, I can’t do a book review.  What I can rightly judge is the promotional video here:

Rob Bell promotional for Love Wins

Rob objects to someone putting a note on an art piece by Gandhi saying “Reality check.  He’s in hell.”  Just so we’re clear, Rob did not address the propriety of using an art show to make a theological point, nor the abruptness of the message as being unloving – rather he took offense at the notion of Gandhi being in hell.

Since my current bible reading is taking me through the book of Romans, I find myself almost every day crying out “Rob, have you read the bible?”  The answers to your questions are right there in black and white.  Paul addressed all your concerns about the righteousness of God and the “rightness” of His judgments.

Romans 2:2-8 ESV

2 We know that the judgment of God rightly falls on those who practice such things. 3 Do you suppose, O man—you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself—that you will escape the judgment of God? 4 Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? 5 But because of your hard and impenitent heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed.
6 He will render to each one according to his works
: 7 to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; 8 but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury.

Please Rob, please read the first three chapters of Romans carefully.  Paul answers your questions in depth and with amazing clarity.  God is love – yes – but He is also a righteous judge that will not be ignored or discussed into oblivion.  His love is revealed in the redemption He provided for us through His Son Jesus.

We love because he first loved us. ~ 1 John 4:19

Lakeland Revival is Over…Finally

Fox News reported that

In Lakeland, where several hundred people had gathered for the annual Sun ‘n Fun aviation festival, a tent collapsed and injured seven people, authorities said. Authorities said all of the injuries were minor and six were taken to a local hospital.
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If you will remember, the Lakeland revival was at the Sun ‘n Fun airport and the semi permanent tent looked exactly like the one shown on the video here:

Click here to watch video – embedding disabled

Could it be finally, that God put an end to the Lakeland Revival?