Letter to the Editor: Radio Bible Class Promoting Contemplative/Emerging Philip Yancey in Easter Booklet – Implications Not Good
LTRP Note: Today, we received the following e-mail from a Lighthouse Trails reader who is in ministry. The Letter to the Editor tells how this reader received a copy of their Easter booklet from Radio Bible Class and saw that it was written by contemplative/emerging proponent Philip Yancey. According to the RBC website, Yancey has been writing for RBC since 2008. Lighthouse Trails has written about Radio Bible Class (creators of The Daily Bread) in the past because of their consistent promotion of contemplative/emerging figures (see our two older article links below) under the leadership of M.R. DeHaan’s (RBC founder) grandson, Mart DeHaan. Another writer RBC uses is Joseph Stowell. On January 4th, 2013, we wrote an article about Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids, MI, and discussed Stowell, the university’s current president (former president of Moody Bible Institute), who is a strong advocate for contemplative.
Regarding Philip Yancey’s book,The Jesus I Never Knew (which our reader tells us is used in the 2013 RBC Easter booklet), well, let us say this: the title sounds a lot like the title of Marcus Borg’s book, The God We Never Knew. That is not surprising as Yancey makes mention of Borg in The Jesus We Never Knew, and we believe Yancey is influenced by Borg. Remember, Borg is the one who has denied certain tenets of the Christian faith such as the virgin birth, the atonement, and the deity of Christ (The God We Never Knew, p. 25). To favorably reference him, as Yancey does, speaks volumes. Here is one thing Borg says in The God We Never Knew, which shows his disdain for the Word of God:
I let go of the notion that the Bible is a divine product. I learned that it is a human cultural product, the product of two ancient communities, biblical Israel and early Christianity. As such, it contained their understandings and affirmations, not statements coming directly or somewhat directly from God. . . . I realized that whatever “divine revelation” and the “inspiration of the Bible” meant (if they meant anything), they did not mean that the Bible was a divine product with divine authority. (From p. 25, cited in Faith Undone, p. 196)
Yancey’s book, The Jesus We Never Knew, is packed with references of and quotes by those in the contemplative and/or emerging (i.e, the “new” spirituality) camp such as Karl Barth, New Ager M. Scott Peck, Henri Nouwen, Marcus Borg, Jurgen Moltmann, Martin Buber, and Soren Kierkegaard (many of these are addressed in Roger Oakland’s Faith Undone and Ray Yungen’s A Time of Departing). Yancey names Jurgen Moltmann as one of the people who helped him “understand Jesus better” (at back of book). Moltmann is a bedrock figure in the emerging church movement. His book Theology of Hope was inspired by Marxist philosopher Ernst Bloch.
Many readers of The Daily Bread and other RBC publications are still counting on the trustworthiness of RBC founder, M.R. DeHaan, but it is important to realize that a new generation is running the organization and this negates the guarantee that the ministry will be run with the same biblical integrity. We beseech you to search out this matter. And while there may still be good topics discussed at RBC, a little leaven spoils the whole lump, especially when that leaven is contemplative/emerging spirituality.
(It may be worth reading some of the articles we have posted on our research site about Yancey’s beliefs.)
The Letter to the Editor we received:
To Lighthouse Trails:
Just received a mailing from RBC Ministries (Daily Bread people) for an Easter booklet written by none other than Philip Yancey. I have heard they are incorporating some emergent authors/thoughts, and it appears that is very true. Lots of people will be deceived by this! It advertises his book, “Believing is Seeing” and indicates the contents come from “The Jesus I Never Knew.” I have not read the booklet yet, but find it alarming that this ministry would utilize his materials!
From a LT reader
Radio Bible Class and New Ager M. Scott Peck (from 2008)
Radio Bible Class – Influenced by Contemplative? (from 2007)