Posts Tagged ‘Israel’

Andy Stanley’s Dangerous Path – Tells SBC Leaders “Get the spotlight off the Bible.”

By Jim Fletcher
Used with permission.
(Jim Fletcher is a writer, researcher, speaker and director of Prophecy Matters (prophecymatters.com).  He writes online for WorldNetDaily; Beliefnet; American Family Association; the Jerusalem Post; and Rapture Ready. He can be reached at jim@prophecymatters.com.)

Almost 20 years ago, Andy Stanley—the son of Southern Baptist legend Charles Stanley—emerged as a new generation pastor, a man of rare gifts when it comes to communicating. He eschewed jackets and ties and the more formal trappings of traditional church.

Andy Stanley - Photo used in accordance with US Fair Use Act for purpose of critique, review, and education

Andy Stanley – Photo used in accordance with US Fair Use Act for purpose of critique, review, and education

In about 2000, he was instrumental in helping develop a leadership entity known as Catalyst.

In the midst of all this, Stanley the Younger was in a feud of sorts with Stanley the Elder over the latter’s separation from his wife (Andy’s mother).

Over time, the son’s church eclipsed the father’s church in terms of attendees, and today Andy Stanley is one-third of what I call the Evangelical Trifecta: Rick Warren, Bill Hybels, and Stanley. Quite interestingly, Warren is based on the west coast; Hybels holds down the Midwest from Chicago, and Stanley is entrenched on the east coast. In more ways than one, they blanket the country and absolutely control the evangelical narrative. Their books and methologies totally dominate evangelicalism and their church growth techniques are now American dogma.

In recent years, Andy Stanley has made waves with his brand of what I’d call Progressive Evangelicalism. His prayers at Obama’s inaugurations,1 and his willingness to allow Michelle Obama to speak at his North Point Church are part of a troubling trend. He also has absolutely helped mainstream homosexuality within the evangelical church.

What gives?

Stanley, who comes across as a winsome, easy-going fellow, is really a major change agent. His podcasts, messages, and books are absorbed by many tens of thousands of U.S. pastors.

I will tell you clearly that I believe he is described in the book of Jude. Men like Stanley have crept in unawares.

In our time.

What does this have to do with Israel?

Stanley’s rise, and that of his fellow change agents, coincides with a sharp downturn of support for Israel in the churches. It’s one element in an overall larger story, but the bottom line is this: Stanley’s watering-down of Christianity runs parallel to the rise of the so-called Christian Palestinianists. While Stanley himself rarely speaks of Israel, many of his friends and associations are anti-Israel.

Often, people answer me by saying: “But Charles Stanley supports Israel!”

He does so far as I know, but you do see that’s irrelevant in the context of what Andy Stanley is doing . . . don’t you?

Overall, Andy Stanley wants to fundamentally change what the Evangelical Church is. He, like Warren and Hybels, wants conformity and group-think. He wants you to think as he thinks.

And he thinks in dangerous ways.

Late last month, the Southern Baptist Convention’s “Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission” (ERLC) hosted another self-serving conference in Nashville, titled “Onward” (shockingly, the same title as that of the ERLC chief’s new book; it’s about the marketing, stupid). Stanley was invited to speak.

Boy, did he.

While ERLC President Russell Moore looked on grinning, Andy Stanley said the following:

“I would ask preachers and pastors and student pastors in their communications to get the spotlight off the Bible and back on the resurrection.”

Get the spotlight off the Bible!

Welcome to the Age of Apostasy.

Did you hear what he said? Andy Stanley speaks blasphemy and nonsense . . . and no national leader says a word.

Just for a moment, think about the illogical nature of Stanley’s statement: how do we know about the resurrection? Through Scripture.

Does anybody call him on this nonsense? No. He grows stronger.

Several years ago, Stanley gave an interview in which he openly said that as a college freshman, he embraced his professor’s contention that Genesis 1-11 is a fairy tale.

You need to understand this one bit of information undergirds everything he does. It is foundational to his thinking and “ministry.”

He is arrogant and powerful.

When you have famous national evangelicals with this kind of worldview, you will see a downturn in support for Israel. Stanley has made several outrageous statements about the Bible in the past three years; in short, he wants people to get their focus off the Bible. Can you imagine such?

Andy Stanley’s so-called ministry is an outrage. Would that he was held accountable. But he won’t be.

This is a key reason (though largely unknown by the rank-and-file) why Israel has fallen out of favor. If you relegate the Bible to myth, why pay attention? Why would Israel’s historical claims to the land be more valid than anyone else’s?

Stanley is helping destroy the American Church. In my opinion, he will be a major reason the American Church morphs into the State Church before too many more years pass.

And remember: my views of Stanley aren’t the story here. The story is the unconscionable violence he is willingly doing to Scripture and to the evangelical community.

Jim1fletcher@yahoo.com

Related Information:

BOOK REVIEW ON ANDY STANLEY’S BOOK, DEEP AND WIDE by Gary Gilley

 

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Evangelical Lutheran Church of America and Israel

LTRP Note: Please see the video clip  by Paul Wilkinson below the segment of this out-of-house news article. Also see a 2013 article by Jim Fletcher.

“Anti-BDS activists decry Lutherans’ ‘obsession’ with Israel”

By RAFAEL MEDOFF
The Jerusalem Post

Old Town Jerusalem (Photo: bigstockphoto.com; used with permission

Old Town Jerusalem (Photo: bigstockphoto.com)

The Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA), the largest Lutheran denomination in the US, passed two Israel-related resolutions earlier this month at its triennial assembly in New Orleans. One resolution established an “investment screen” that will recommend where Lutherans should invest their money with regard to Israel and the Palestinians. The other urged a cutoff of US aid to Israel unless Israel meets a series of conditions, and calls for the immediate US recognition of “the state of Palestine.” . . . David Brog, of Christians United for Israel, said in a statement that the resolutions “blame Israel and only Israel for the conflict in the Middle East.

Such one-sided scapegoating of the Jewish state will only fuel further Palestinian rejection and violence.” Click here to continue reading.

Related Video by Paul Wilkinson at the 2014 Berean Call Conference and a 2013 article by Jim Fletcher:

** Video by Paul Wilkinson: http://livestream.com/accounts/4634368/events/3277070/videos/60764986.

“Propaganda Wins” On Israel

By Jim Fletcher (from 2013)
Used with permission.

At the Catalyst East conference in Atlanta, I listened to Lynne Hybels give a talk about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. One of her concluding slides was an image of the security fence Israel erected to keep out terrorists. It’s worked quite well, and that seems to bother critics of the Jewish state, who can’t bring themselves to simply say that it’s good Jews are not being murdered anymore.

Instead, the critics refer to the fence as a “wall,” or, more provocatively, an “apartheid wall.” This is a complete inversion of the truth, since Israel is the most open society in the Middle East, and grants far-reaching rights to Arabs.

An interesting lie being peddled is that the fence completely surrounds Bethlehem. It does not.

Yet, by alleging that the fence encircles the town—this even by members of the Religious Left who have been there and know better—they succeed in portraying Israel as the “warden” of the “prison” the Palestinians are kept in.

Hybels chose to include an image in her presentation that showed a simple message written on the fence:

“Love Wins.”

This is significant, because it signals yet another evidence that leftists are tightening their grip on Evangelicalism. After all, Rob Bell’s 2011 book, Love Wins, in which he comes out as a universalist while simultaneously denying that he did so—this a hallmark tactic of leftists posing as “evangelicals”—is admired by those change-agents within the church who are attempting to transform it into an altogether different entity.

By approvingly displaying this image, Hybels shows clearly that she embraces the same type of theology/ideology that Bell does. They are all in the same camp, and specific examples could be cited all the day long:

•Donald Miller’s hit piece on Israel, from his November 19 blog post.

•Andy Braner’s recent blog post bemoaning the tough conditions of those that live in Bethlehem.

•Gabe Lyon’s recent “Q” discussion/interview with Sami Awad, a leading change agent and Bethlehem resident who is friends with Lynne Hybels.

•Relevant magazine’s continued flirtation with anyone who either mocks Bible prophecy or sides with Israel.

By the way, I’ve just been informed that Relevant’s issue dealing with the Israel/”Palestine” conflict—set for January—has been moved to July. Be watching for it.

A further interesting development is that when I attempted, several times, to get an interview with Catalyst director Brad Lomenick, and ask him why anti-Israel and self-described “non-Marxist socialist” Cornel West spoke at Catalyst East in 2011, I was told Mr. Lomenick doesn’t have time.

(There is plenty of other data that shows the Catalyst team is committed to spreading the Palestinian narrative throughout the American church.)

Personally, if I were responsible for filling young evangelicals’ heads with leftist ideology espoused by Liberation Theologian West…I’d find the time to tell constituents why. But you must know, dear reader, that a hallmark of the New Evangelical leadership is to stonewall when someone questions their methods.

Silence. This type of ideology is flooding the evangelical world, as we speak. Click here to continue reading.

** Video by Paul Wilkinson: http://livestream.com/accounts/4634368/events/3277070/videos/60764986.

 

 

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Do Gentiles Become Jews When They Believe?

By Mike Oppenheimer
Let Us Reason Ministries

When a Gentile becomes a believer in Christ, he becomes part of the body of Christ, not Israel. He is a spiritual Gentile, not a Jew.  Israel is a nation consisting of Jews; Hebrews are an ethnicity who are from the linage of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (the twelve tribes). A Gentile (both believer and non-believer) is from Abraham, not Isaac and Jacob.

Being Abraham’s seed does not make one Jewish; this is where people have been taught wrong. Its Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, (from whom came the 12 tribes); otherwise the Arabs are Jewish too. Selah.

John 18:35 Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered You to me.”

Romans 1:16: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.”

It is written “that the Christ would suffer, that He would be the first to rise from the dead, and would proclaim light to the Jewish people and to the Gentiles.” (Acts 26:23). Two groups of people. Later it was Saul who was specifically called to this other group while the original apostles worked among their people, the Jews. Paul was also going to the Jews first as his priority, but they rejected the message from him and said in Acts 28:28 “Therefore let it be known to you that the salvation of God has been sent to the Gentiles, and they will hear it!”

Romans 11:12-13: “Now if their fall is riches for the world, and their failure riches for the Gentiles, how much more their fullness! For I speak to you Gentiles; inasmuch as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry.” He spoke of himself as “a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth” (1 Timothy 2:7).

Paul made the distinction between Gentiles and Jews before their salvation and continued this distinction afterwards in Romans 2:9,10.

Romans 10:12-13: “For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

He is not saying Jews and Gentile are no longer valid or erased, but that both call upon the Lord for salvation.

Under the new covenant.

Romans 2:28-29: “For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh; but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.”

In other words, one must have faith to be a Jew, not just in their lineage. It was also a matter of the heart.

Speaking to the Gentiles, Galatians 3:29: “And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” He refers to one being of the seed of Abraham as one exercising faith.

Paul had to rebuke Peter:

Galatians 2:14: But when I saw that they were not straightforward about the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter before them all, “If you, being a Jew, live in the manner of Gentiles and not as the Jews, why do you compel Gentiles to live as Jews?

Clearly, there were distinctions; yet he also said of those who were in the body of Christ to not see each other as they did before.

Colossians 3:10-11: “and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.”

Galatians 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”

What he is saying is that as the body of Christ we are all children of God and that any differences should not be used to divide (2 Corinthians 12:13). Jew and Greek is a more specific substitute for the distinction of Jew and Gentile. There were still slaves and masters existing at the time just as there were still men and women. But this was to be overlooked in defining a person who is now in Christ.

In the same way Matthew 19:6 says: “So then, they are no longer two but one flesh.” This does not mean one literal person, but speaks spiritually.

Jesus says in Revelation 2:9: “and I know the blasphemy of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan.”

Clearly there were those who claimed to be Jews but were not believers and were against the Messiah (as in Acts 14:2).

The Gentiles as said to be called by His name (Acts 15). Acts 21:25: “Gentiles who believe.”

Paul never said Gentiles were Jews after they believe.

Romans 15:10-11: And again, he says: “Rejoice, O Gentiles, with His people!” And again: “Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles! Laud Him, all you peoples!”

Galatians 3:14 says that the “blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”

Ephesians 3:6 explains that “the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel.

Acts 17:17: “Therefore he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and with the Gentile worshipers, and in the marketplace daily with those who happened to be there.”

Just as Gentiles were not called Jews when they worshiped God in the synagogue, they are not called Jews when they believe in Messiah Jesus. Rather, they are fellow heirs; they become believers, spiritual Gentiles. this distinction continues through the Scriptures.

Related Material:

 

 

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World Vision’s Gaza Manager Funneled Millions to Hamas

LTRP Note: We find it sad when we think back to how many readers have told us that they still donate to World Vision. Not only is the news story below shocking, but World Vision has been going in the emergent direction for years as we have reported on different occasions. It seems that people want to give to big organizations (just like they want to attend big churches) because it makes them feel safer if they are associated with the masses. What deception! And by the way, if you think World Vision likes Israel, think again (and read some of the articles – see links below) we have posted over the years. If you want to support needy families and children around the world, find a legitimate organization, such as Understand the Times’ Bryce Homes program, that doesn’t despise Israel, doesn’t allow donations to be used for terrorist groups, and actually believes in the biblical Gospel.

By F. Brinley Bruton and Lawahez Jabari
NBC News

TEL AVIV, Israel — Israel has accused a manager working for U.S.-headquartered Christian charity World Vision of funneling millions of dollars to Islamist militant group Hamas.

Mohammad El Halabi, manager of operations in the Gaza Strip for the US-based charity World Vision, at a court in Beersheba on Thursday. Photograph: Dudu Grunshpan/Reuters

Mohammad El Halabi, manager of operations in the Gaza Strip for the US-based charity World Vision, at a court in Beersheba on Thursday. Photograph: Dudu Grunshpan/Reuters

was arrested by Israel on June 15 while crossing the border into Gaza, World Vision said in a statement. He was charged by Israeli authorities on Thursday.

He had run the organization’s Gaza operations since 2010.

According to Israel’s Shin Bet security service, El Halabi diverted around $7.2 million of World Vision money to Hamas each year. That is the equivalent of 60 percent of the charity’s total annual funding for Gaza.

Some 40 percent of the funds aimed at civilian projects — some $1.5 million a year — were “given in cash” to Hamas combat units, according to a statement issued by the Shin Bet.

Some of the money raised to support injured children in the enclave had been diverted to Hamas families by “fraudulently listing their children as wounded,” according to the agency. Click here to continue reading.

Related Information:

World Visions’ Statement on the Arrest

Believing a Lie: World Vision’s Steve Haas on Israel.

Film Warning: “With God on Our Side” – Championed by Jim Wallis, Tony Campolo, Brian McLaren & Steve Haas (World Vision)

World Vision Cries “Reform” – But What About Israel and the Emerging Church – The Story Behind the Story

World Vision’s Crocodile Tears: ” Brokenhearted over the pain and confusion” They Caused By Endorsing Homosexual Marriage

World Vision’s Crocodile Tears: ” Brokenhearted over the pain and confusion” They Caused By Endorsing Homosexual Marriage

Book Review: The Hole in Our Gospel (by World Vision’s Richard Stearns)

List of 50 Top Contemplative-Promoting Organizations Adds 8 Runner Ups

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Moscow Calming Israeli, American Fears of Russia-Turkey-Iran Coalition

Comment by Roger Oakland: For those who are reading this and who do not believe Ezekiel 38 is relative to current events happening today in the middle east, read this article. The very nations mentioned over 2500 years ago in the Bible that would be aligned against Israel in the last days are aligned against Israel right now. WAKE UP! Stand up if you attend a postmodern church and tell someone.

Putin (L) and Erdogan / Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

“Moscow Calming Israeli, American Fears of Russia-Turkey-Iran Coalition”
By  JNi.Media
Jewish Press

Tuesday’s meeting in St. Petersburg between the two former feuding foes Russian President Putin and Turkish President Erdogan “drew considerable attention,” government-run news agency TASS reported, noting that the Russian-Turkish rapprochement is coming while Russia has been expanding its relations with Iran and Ankara and Tehran have also been bridging the gaps between them, born by almost four decades of a volatile Islamic Republic on Turkey’s border. In fact, right after the failed coup last month, Erdogan announced, “We are determined to cooperate with Iran and Russia to address regional problems side by side and to step up our efforts considerably to restore peace and stability to the region.”

Should Israel be concerned? Apparently, the Russian news organ is eager to spread a message of calm regarding the new developments in the northern part of the region. And so an unsigned article this week polled experts who were skeptical regarding a developing strategic triangle of those three powers. According to the TASS experts, the most that will come out of the current statements are tactical political interaction and an upturn in economic cooperation. But even if it were true, and Russia, Turkey and Iran were to forge a strategic alliance, TASS continues its calming message, it would be for the best, because “these three countries can play a positive role, for instance, in overcoming the Syrian crisis.”

It isn’t clear who is panicking more at the moment—Jerusalem or Washington—over the possibility that Turkey, a NATO member, would switch sides and coalesce with Russia and Iran. Clearly, the US has a whole lot more to lose from such an emerging outcome. US Middle East policy traditionally relied on the “three-legged stool” comprised of Saudi Arabia, Iran and Turkey. As long as those three major local powers were in the Western camp, Soviet manipulations elsewhere could be mitigated. When Iran was lost under President Jimmy Carter in 1979, the US attempted for the longest time to substitute Iraq for the missing stool leg, but the Iraqi regime never provided the stability the US enjoyed with the Shah. This is why the US is so determined to keep Turkey in the Western camp, because without a Western-allied Turkey, the US presence in the region would be severely downgraded.

Hence the need for the TASS calming story. It interviewed senior research fellow Vladimir Sazhin, of the Oriental Studies Institute under the Russian Academy of Sciences, who reassured the Western readers “there will be no trilateral union, of course. It should be ruled out for many reasons. At best one can expect some tactical alliance. This is so because Iran, Turkey and Russia have certain problems in their relations with the West and with the United States.” That’s code for Turkey would be punished severely, economically and otherwise, if it ever jumped ship. FULL ARTICLE: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/moscow-calming-israeli-american-fears-of-russia-turkey-iran-coalition/2016/08/11/

Related Information:

Rick Warren Says Those Who Focus on Bible Prophecy “Not fit for the kingdom of God”

 

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Letter to the Editor: Does Lighthouse Trails Only Cover the Contemplative Prayer Issue?

Dear Lighthouse Trails:

I was thinking about the cost of mail and how it affects your ministry.  I wonder whether it would now require broader topics to keep it going.  So many of your readers like me have read your warnings about the contemplatives for many years now and perhaps there could be other areas for those people.  Just a thought . . . because it might bring in more readers in the U.S.A. when the Canadians can’t buy because of outrageous shipping costs. I forget what small thing I wanted to buy in the U.S.A. yesterday, but it would cost $60 shipping for a small inexpensive object!  I don’t understand this at all.  There’s supposed to be free trade between the two countries, but those shipping prices are not likely to promote free trade.

Your articles on contemplatives have been excellent, and I knew to avoid churches with that after reading Lighthouse Trails authors.  I wonder what other areas need to be covered now.
God bless.
J.

bigstockphoto.com (a monastery)

bigstockphoto.com (a monastery)

Dear J.

Thanks for your e-mail. It’s really a tragedy that “free” trade between our two countries is so expensive. We are trying to find a Canadian distributor, at least for the booklets, which would mean Canadians could buy the materials right in Canada. Sadly, we were told recently that some of our topics would now be illegal in Canada, and the U.S. is right behind that.

We know what you mean about covering other topics. We actually do cover many many other topics If you look at our blog, for instance, under categories (see below), you can see just how many there are. While we have always emphasized the contemplative, there are dozens of other topics we regularly cover such as Israel, the Holocaust, the emerging church, child abuse, evolution vs creation, false signs and wonders, Roman Catholicism, ecumenism, abortion, Yoga and the New Age, homeschooling issues, Native Spirituality, the Gospel and salvation, and other issues that are affecting the church and the world. This can be seen in our print journals too. We know we will always talk about the contemplative issue, especially because we do receive new readers every day who know nothing about it, but we agree that we need to cover other aspects too, and we hope that is what we are doing.

Here is a list of our current topics we regularly cover. This list is taken from our blog, and these are all live links you can click.

BELOW IS A LIST OF THE CATEGORIES WE COVER IN THE RESOURCES ON OUR STORE SITE:

 Biographies

Remembering the Holocaust

Emerging Church

Audio Books

 

 

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God of Jacob, God of Israel

By Dave Hunt
(the founder of The Berean Call)

First published in August 2006
According to the latest Fox News polls updated June 26, 2006 (other polls basically agree), “fully 92 percent of Americans say they believe in God”; only 5 percent say they don’t, while the remaining 3 percent are not sure [ed. note: the numbers have not changed substantially today]. In How We Believe , Michael Shermer, director of the Skeptics Society and publisher of Skeptic magazine, claims that “Never in history have so many, and such a high percentage of the [American] population, believed in God. Not only is God not dead as Nietzche proclaimed, but he has never been more alive.”

This statistic, however, is not as encouraging as it sounds. When we ask what respondents mean by “god,” very few believe in—much less know— the God of the Bible . Yet belief in a false god is no better and could be even worse than believing in no God. For many, “God” is simply a “higher power.” Higher than what? Power ? What kind? And how could a “power” of any kind have the infinite intelligence (or any intelligence) to design the atom, the universe, imprint the written instructions in a coded language on DNA for constructing and operating every cell, and create intelligent, personal beings with a moral conscience and a passion for purpose?

The very thought of a “power” creating anything is ridiculous! Then why is belief in a “power” so appealing? Did the Star Wars slogan, “May the Force be with you,” have that much influence? It went a long way toward changing movie fans’ thinking, especially among American youth. Of course, this has always been a popular idea because a power/force can’t impose moral laws, demand obedience, or judge and punish anyone—instead, it can be used for one’s own ends. Clearly, the true God who created us for a purpose holds mankind responsible for creation’s witness to His existence and for obedience to the moral laws He has implanted in every conscience (Rom:1:18-25
; 2:14-16). He will not be used. Click here to continue reading.

Related Material:

ISRAEL: REPLACING WHAT GOD HAS NOT

 

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