Lighthouse Trails Research Project Header

"From the Lighthouse" Newsletter

                     Printer Friendly Version (click here)        October 5, 2009

In This Issue - click choice

Warren B. Smith and Ray Yungen Speaking at Calvary Chapel Atascadero

Understanding the Role of the Desert Fathers

Review: A "Wonderful" Deception

G12 Master's Plan Could Expose Thousands of Nazarenes to Contemplative/Emerging Spirituality

Why the Heathen Rage in a World Gone Amiss

Is It Through the Blood of Our Redeemer Jesus Christ or the Lifeblood of the Local Church That We Have Spiritual Life?

Take the Test: Do You Discern or Do You Deny ... the TRUTH?...

Back to (Contemplative) School - Christian Colleges in Crisis

Confusion over Names: Two Warren Smith's

27 More Days - 7 Year Anniversary Fall Special

Gospel Folk Music to Uplift the Saints

Publishing News

 

Join Our Mailing List!

 

Quick Links

 

Lighthouse Trails 

Author Websites

 

Who We Are

Lighthouse Trails is a Christian publishing company. While we hope you will read the books we have published and support our authors, we also provide extensive free research, documentation, and news on our Research site, blog, and newsletter.

 

We pray that the books as well as the online research will be a blessing to the body of Christ and a witness to those who have not yet accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord.

 

CONTACTING US

Important Note: If you try to reach Lighthouse Trails through email and do not receive an answer from us within a timely manner, please either re-email your comments or call us. Unexplainably, we do not receive all our email, and some of our email to others does not reach its destination.

 

 

Warren B. Smith and Ray Yungen Speaking at Calvary Chapel Atascadero

On Saturday, October 10, 2009, Warren B. Smith and Ray Yungen will be speaking in Atascadero, California from 9am until 3pm. They will be talking about the spiritual deception that has come into the church today through contemplative spirituality, the emerging church, the Purpose Driven movement, and more.

Warren Smith will be addressing several issues that he wrote about in his new book, A "Wonderful" Deception, including The Shack and the "new science" that is being brought forth to "prove" that God is in all things.

Ray Yungen will explain what contemplative spirituality (spiritual formation) is, who is promoting and teaching it, and why it a dangerous and unbiblical belief system.

The Saturday meeting is hosted by the Calvary Chapel church in Atascadero. There will be no charge.

We realize many who receive this email live too far away to attend this meeting, but we still wanted to let you know about it, hoping you would pray for those attending that many would come to understand the seriousness of what is taking place in the church today.

Conference Details:
October 10, 2009 9am-3pm (no charge)
Discernment Conference
Calvary Chapel Atascadero, California
Catered lunch ($10)
6955 Portola Rd
Atascadero, CA 93422-3622
(805) 466-3354

Editors
Lighthouse Trails Publishing
Lighthouse Trails Research Project

ADDED NOTE: On February 27, 2010, Warren B. Smith, Ray Yungen, Johanna Michaelsen, and Chris Quintana will be speaking in Westminster, California. This will be a joint conference hosted by two Calvary Chapel churches: Calvary Chapel Cypress and Calvary Chapel Pacific Coast. More details will follow soon.

 

 

Understanding the Role of the Desert Fathers

by S.E. Ray

Eternal Path Ministries

It only takes a little leaven to make the dough rise as Christ taught... meaning it only takes a little error to cancel out all the positive effects of truth. The Desert Fathers were Early Coptic who lived in the Egyptian Nitrate desert and had some deep insights, but they were immersed in some Eastern methodologies that troubles a great many past and current scholars.

In the early Middle Ages during the 4th through 6th centuries, there lived a group of hermits in the wilderness areas of the Middle East. They were known to history as the Desert Fathers. They dwelt in small isolated communities for the purpose of devoting their lives completely to God without distraction. The contemplative movement traces its roots back to these monks. They were the ones who first promoted the mantra as a prayer tool. "The meditation practices and rules for living of these earliest Christian monks bear strong similarity to those of their Hindu and Buddhist enunciate brethren several kingdoms to the East ... the meditative techniques they adopted for finding their God suggest either a borrowing from the East or a spontaneous rediscovery.'" From A Time of Departing, p. 42, 2nd ed. (Ray Yungen)

You might want to read the whole article to get the full gist. I have a rule of thumb about being a purist by not accepting any group or teaching that departs from the foundational teachings of Christ. Inasmuch as we are the bride of Christ, we as the bride should desire to keep ourselves pure from the world and teachings that edge away from the counsel of Christ as set forth in scripture. Or as James the Lesser wrote in his letter in James 1:27, "Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world."

Adam and Eve entertained only one convincing error combine with truth, and all of mankind was gravely effected. A lesson about the dangers of accepting error mixed with truth. Plus, we simply can't take a teachers, churches or any institutions word as the ultimate truth. So many in authority today are duped by erroneous teaching, because they haven't taken the time to investigate the origin and spirit behind the teaching. Sadly, some have estimated more than half those who are teaching today are under the spirit of error. As a avid watchman on the wall for close to a decade, I would say those estimates are conservative and growing.

For more information on the Desert Fathers, click here.

 

Review: A "Wonderful" Deception

Amazon book review

by Reviewer: Frank 

A much needed book by a former New Ager himself, Warren Smith. You will find out all about Leonard Sweet, Rick Warren and his links to the New Age Pastor Robert Schuller. There is so much information on these people that are attempting to corrupt the Christian faith you will be left in disbelief as to how they have deceived so many people. Copious amounts of information about the New Age/New Spirituality/Quantum Spirituality movement along with the Emerging Church movement. The apostate book, "The Shack" by William P. Young is also exposed here.

This book reads like a mystery novel, but unfortunately it's all true and completely end-noted. If you truly care about the faith and want to see where it is going, this is a must read for the discerning Christian. Thank the Lord there are people like Warren Smith with the fortitude to expose these people for what they really are: Wolves in sheep's clothing.
Click here to read more.

G12 Master's Plan Could Expose Thousands of Nazarenes to Contemplative/Emerging Spirituality

by Philip Gray

Free-lance writer

Training Today's Leaders for Tomorrow's Churches" is the motto for New Church Specialties, a Christian consulting organization that largely reaches Nazarenes. But New Church Specialties and the affiliated New Church University (where pastors and leaders are mentored and trained) are a conduit for the new spirituality, and their G12 Master's Plan could potentially expose thousands of Nazarenes to contemplative spirituality and the emerging church.

While New Church Specialties does mentor and train leaders from various denominations, a 2008 Annual Ministry Report reveals that 62% of NCS's 2008 income came from Nazarene churches with Salvation Army, Wesleyan, and other denominations covering the rest. The report says that NCS's vision is "changing the way churches communicate," and its mission is to "assist the starting and strengthening of churches worldwide." But evidence shows that this changing and strengthening of churches is going to be done using, at least in part, contemplative/emerging authors.

New Church Specialties is offering to their followers books by New Age sympathizers Leonard Sweet, Brian McLaren, and Ken Blanchard for instruction and guidance. 1 Leonard Sweet, author of Quantum Spirituality, has worked on a number of occasions with Rick Warren to bring about what he refers to as a "new spirituality." 2 A well-documented expose on Sweet's beliefs can be found in Warren Smith's new book, A "Wonderful" Deception. Smith shows that Sweet has been influenced by major New Age proponents such as Matthew Fox, David Spangler, and a number of others. One of the most, if not the most, outstanding figures for New Age spirituality, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, is said by Sweet to be "Twentieth-century Christianity's major voice" (see p. 118, AWD). Such a misconception - de Chardin is perhaps the New Age's "major voice" but certainly not true Christianity's.

Ken Blanchard, also used by NCS, has been promoting and endorsing and writing forewords for New Age meditation authors for many years. From Deepak Chopra (7 Spiritual Laws of Success) to Gay Hendricks (The Corporate Mystic) to Anthony Robbins (Unlimited Power) to Jim Ballard (Mind Like Water), and others, Blanchard has been consistent in showing his affinity with New Age meditation teachers. All of these books just mentioned teach and/or promote eastern-style mysticism. In a book titled, What Would Buddha Do At Work?, Blanchard states in the foreword: "Buddha points to the path and invites us to begin our journey to enlightenment. I ... invite you to begin your journey to enlightened work." In 2007, Blanchard wrote the foreword to Jim Ballard's book, Little Wave and Old Swell, a book in which the front cover says it is inspired by Paramahansa Yogananda, a Hindu guru (the book is kind of A Course in Miracles for children - god in all).3

The book New Church Specialties is using by Leonard Sweet, The Church in Emerging Culture, is a compilation of five authors including emerging church/futurist/mystic proponent Erwin McManus and atonement denier/emergent leader Brian McLaren. McManus has an interesting way of viewing Christianity. He states: "My goal is to destroy Christianity as a world religion and be a recatalyst for the movement of Jesus Christ" and "Some people are upset with me because it sounds like I'm anti-Christian. I think they might be right" (see link above for sources). He admits that his popular book, The Barbarian Way (a book that David Jeremiah advocates) has a core of mysticism in its foundation.4

A 2008 Lighthouse Trails article, "Is General Baptist Ministries Going Toward Contemplative?," discusses New Church Specialties and its founder Larry McKain. Sadly, that article points out that Church of the Nazarene General Superintendent Dr. Jim Diehl endorses the work at NCS. Lighthouse Trails explains that when Ray Yungen's book A Time of Departing first was released in 2002, Jim Diehl read that book and contacted Lighthouse Trails by phone to say he wholeheartedly agreed with its message. Other endorsements of NCS include an array of denominational leaders. 5

How is New Church Specialties going to be able to impact thousands of Nazarenes and other Christians? New Church Specialties has implemented a program that can potentially serve as a catalyst to bring the spirituality of Sweet, McLaren and Blanchard to countless unsuspecting Christians. This program is best known as G12 (Government of 12). NCS refers to this as "The Master's Plan." In short, this is a church-growth technique adapted partly from Korean pastor David Cho and Colombian pastor Cesar Castellanos, which promises substantial church growth. The Master's Plan proposes that true church growth can only come about through a CELL structure where a leader will vigorously train 12 people, who will train 12 people, who will train 12 people. While numbers often grow with this structure, there are disturbing testimonies of abuse and discipline if one does not follow implicitly the CELL leader over him or her. An overview of NCS's Master Plan (written by a Nazarene pastor in Anaheim, California) lays out The Master's Plan in more depth, acknowledging that a "disciple" will need to meet with his 11 brothers and sisters up to three times a week and remain committed to them for "life." The Encounter Weekend Retreats provide further training to disciples, including the very problematic (occult in origin from Agnes Sanford) "inner healing."

In view of how extremely pervasive mystical contemplative spirituality is throughout most of Christianity today (and in view of NCS's promotion of contemplative advocates), this G12 structure could literally cause contemplative to explode in thousands of lives very rapidly.

As with most false teachings, there is an element of hiding the truth regarding NCS's G12 implementation. In the overview, it states: "Avoid the use of the phrase 'G12' in your public discussions. Call it The Master's Plan or The Discipleship Model or some other generic name. For some reason, some people get worked up over the phrase 'G12.'" The Master's Plan hopes to eradicate traditional programs like Sunday School from existence: "Existing ministries will either move over to The Master's Plan or they will wither in time and die of their own natural causes" (p. 29).

New Church Specialties' coupling of contemplative/emerging authors with the G12 Master's Plan could have major affects on so many and could bring to fruition Leonard Sweet's comments about the christ consciousness: "The power of small groups is in their ability to develop the discipline to get people 'in-phase' with the Christ consciousness and connected with one another" (p. 147, Quantum Spirituality), but this is not the Christ of the Bible, but as Paul warned is a "another gospel" and "another Jesus" (II Corinthians 11:4). Nazarenes should take note not to implement New Church Specialties into their own local churches but rather to cling to the truth of God's Word, which rejects the panentheistic, interspiritual nature of contemplative spirituality.

For those who don't quite understand or who may even be skeptical, consider the following: New Age author Marilyn Ferguson, who wrote the classic book The Aquarian Conspiracy, said that 31% of all people who are involved in New Age spirituality entered it through the catalyst of Christian mysticism (i.e., contemplative). This is not surprising when you hear what mystic Richard Kirby said: "The meditation of advanced occultists is identical with the prayer of advanced mystics" (see A Time of Departing). Anyone who realizes the truth of this has to be motivated to take a stand on one side or another. Neutrality in this case is not an option.

le8">For footnote material on this article, click here

 

 

Why the Heathen Rage in a World Gone Amiss

by Bill Randles

"Why do the heathen rage and the people imagine a vain thing? The Kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against His Messiah saying let us break their bands asunder and cast away their cords from us."(Psalm 2:1-3)

The Psalms have ever served me as my prayer book, from the very beginning of my new life in Christ. As I grew in Christian grace, I realized the value of the Psalms for worship, noticing that a good many songs and phrases of songs came right out of them. Over the years other dimensions of the Psalms have become evident to me.

For example, I now realize that the Psalms are every bit as much a source of wisdom teaching as Proverbs and Ecclesiastes. Perhaps the fullest and most satisfying aspect of the Psalms is the realization that they bear a prophetic witness to Jesus. His crucifixion, ascension, priestly ministry, and pre-existence are all foretold in the Psalms. It has also become increasingly obvious to me that the Psalms have an eschatological dimension, they speak of the last days, and the events that lead up to them. One of the clearest prophetic Psalms is the second one. It pictures a whole world in an uproar, the heathen (nations) rage, and the people imagine a vain thing. Do we not live in an extraordinarily tumultuous time? Truly the heathen rage! That is, the nations are in an uproar.

Consider what is going on in the world today among the geopolitical players.

RUSSIA AND CHINA
For example consider Russia. When the Berlin wall came down, and the Soviet Empire collapsed, the once dreaded Bear was subjected to humiliation! Supposedly, Western Capitalism had prevailed, the former Eastern bloc was falling all over itself to come into NATO, and once proud Russia perceived herself as being plundered. Clinton bombed the Serb's, a nation who considered itself the Christian shield of Europe against the Muslim encroachment, and Russia, the traditional ally of the Serbs could do little about it! Russia rages, they would re-assert themselves as a powerful geopolitical player.

Former KGB agent Vladimir Putin was and is a popular leader. China, also rages, she flexes her military and economic muscle. Belligerent generals boast openly of having the ability to strike cities on our west coast. China owns a great share of our national debt, thus our leaders are much beholden to the ruthless Communist leadership of the world's most populous nation.

ISLAM
The Muslim world also rages. Islam feels that their destiny was to rule over the Infidels, not the other way around! What happened? Modernity happened.

Modern progress, made possible by breakthroughs in the Judeo Christian world, advances in the sciences and economics, as well as militarily, bypassed the Muslim world. It didn't help that they took the wrong side in both World Wars! They rage with envy, hatred and frustrated impotence, because they can see with their eyes that they could never create a society like the West. However, it just so happens that the guardians of Mecca and Medina--rather than being passed up by history as the useless and retrograde culture that they indeed are--have been given by God (Jahweh, not Allah) control and access to oil, the literal lifeblood of modern society. If not for oil, the rest of the world would yet be ignoring the backwards and retrograde Muslim world, leaving them to their own world. But the oil has changed everything. There can be no doubt that the western, Judeo Christian world has been raging for quite some time also. Consider the contrast of the beginning of the last century, with the beginning of this one, from cultural confidence to outright groveling apology!

The West has never recovered from the catastrophic, suicidal slaughter that we call World War I & II! Subsequently, the retreat from the colonization of the so-called third world will not abate until every "Rhodesia is reduced to a Zimbabwe"! The problem with the collapse of our western culture is that you can't maintain a culture without a "cultus," that is the religion that animates the culture. For the most part the western world has lost its religion, therefore it is dying. Perhaps this is the part where the "vain imagination" comes in. As the Psalmist says, "Why do the people imagine a vain thing?" What is the vain imagination peculiar to the western world? I believe that the vain imagination is that we can build an enlightened, liberal, loving, productive and civil society, without any reference to "The Lord and His anointed" (anointed means Christ).

We are always the ones who are going to get rid of the "old ways" and do it better! We can create a perfect society and we don't need "The Lord and His Christ" to do it! As the Psalm predicted--it's all about liberation movements and false freedom--that hallowed idol, the false god of the former Judeo Christian world. The Kings of the earth and their rulers (authorities, scientists, social engineers, pundits, opinion shapers) all say in one form or another, "Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us," they would liberate us from the "bands" (religion means "that which binds"). We in the West have spent a lot of capitol, time and energy over the last century, trying to construct godless Utopias, brave new worlds, founded upon the new scientific knowledges, the latest social theories, and upon the goodness and perfectibility of man! These "isms" were the exciting, avant gard idols of their own times--Fascism, Socialism, Communism, etc. The problem with these Utopias was that they all ended up resembling hell on earth! The vain imagination keeps reasserting itself, the latest being the 1960s vision, which seems to be the prevailing wind blowing today--"Imagine there's no heaven, nothing to live for or die for, no distinction between man or woman, right or wrong, truth or error." This is the basic gist of the post modern, post Christian new culture.

The vain imagination is addictive, no matter how many times it has manifestly failed, it is an image, an idol, therefore the allegiance to it runs deep, and it is spiritual! It is vain, empty, and based on false premises. Did the so called sexual revolution, give us anything other than heartbreak, the dissolution of the home, the corruption of innocence and the death of all real love?

But still they cling to it, they tell themselves we really are better off than ever before! Liberated! (From what?--love, commitment, loyalty, selflessness, marriage and the role of male and female? That's liberation?) What a nightmare we have created in the West! Two school children in the United Kingdom took the summer holiday as boys and came back to school as "girls"--having been given sex change operations at the age of 9 and 12! Such societies cannot last too much longer. As God has said in the book of Proverbs, "All they that hate me love death."

The love of death is now in vogue, this generation loves death. Abortion (fifty million in the USA since 1971!) birth control, homosexual marriage, gender confusion, and much more, are all forms of the love of death. Most of the western European societies that bought into the Utopian vision do not even replace themselves demographically! All those who hate the God of the Bible love death! What will the outcome be? The nations will rage at each other--Russia, the European Union, China, the Muslim world--Sunni and Shia, and of course the USA--all competing interests--riled and tumultuous--like the waves of an angry sea. All interconnected as well, everybody trying to appease the Muslim world, because all are desperate for oil, everyone in competition for that oil. The other factor that the Psalmist brings in that complicates the situation immeasurably is Israel. Israel, as we will see, is in a unique category, and as the Hebrew prophets predicted, is destined to become the focus of the rage of the heathen. (Click here to read part two.)

 

 

Is It Through the Blood of Our Redeemer Jesus Christ or the Lifeblood of the Local Church That We Have Spiritual Life?

by Tamara Hartzell

In Churchianity, commitment to a local church is imperative.

"The Bible says a Christian without a church home is like an organ without a body, a sheep without a flock, or a child without a family. It is an unnatural state. The Bible says, 'You belong in God's household with every other Christian.' [endnote: Ephesians 2:19b (LB)]" (Purpose Driven Life; p. 132)

Actually, Rick Warren's first instance of "the Bible says" has no endnote because this is not what God's Word says! Going ahead and claiming "the Bible says" when it does not say so is scriptural malpractice. His second instance of "the Bible says" is from one of the versions that has changed God's Word.

"For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God." (Ephesians 2:18-19)

Because of our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit indwells us and makes us a part of the household of God, the true Body of Christ, which is not the local church. Fellowship with other believers, which is important, does not require a local church for it to take place. Yes, fellowship in a local church is ideal, when there is one available that isn't trading in the Word of God for popular false doctrines sweeping Christianity today. But man-centered, purpose-driven Churchianity takes committing to a local church to a whole new level in its replacement of Christ with community.

"You must be connected to a church fellowship to survive spiritually." --Rick Warren's 40 Days of Community Workbook (Emphasis added)7

"Any organ that is detached from the body will not only miss what it was created to be, it will also shrivel and die quickly. The same is true for Christians that are uncommitted to any specific congregation."--Rick Warren8

"If an organ is somehow severed from its body, it will shrivel and die. It cannot exist on its own, and neither can you. Disconnected and cut off from the lifeblood of a local body, your spiritual life will wither and eventually cease to exist. [endnote: Ephesians 4:16 (no version listed)]" (PDL; p. 131)

The local churches are not the source of "lifeblood" that gives life to our spirit! Ephesians 4:16 says absolutely nothing of these outlandish claims. If our spiritual life ceased to exist because we didn't attend a local church, then the local church would be God's redeeming agent in salvation.

Contrarily, true spiritual life is the eternal life we are given when our spirit is born again. True spiritual life is the life that Jesus Christ lives in us through His indwelling Holy Spirit, when we receive God's free gift of salvation by believing the Gospel of Christ. This true spiritual life is sustained by the Lord God, not by the local church! And if this life ever ceased to exist, that person would have no salvation. It is through the blood of our Redeemer Jesus Christ, not the lifeblood of a local church, that we have spiritual life and are delivered from death. But "the message hasn't changed"!

"For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.... And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness." (Romans 8:2-4, 10)

"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain." (Galatians 2:20-21)

In addition, rather than the pure and sinless life and blood of Jesus Christ, look at the "lifeblood" that Rick Warren would have us depend on for our spiritual life:

"There will never be a perfect church this side of heaven, because every church is filled with pagans, carnal Christians, and immature believers."--Rick Warren9

"Can you see God's wisdom in creating the church, a family full of mentors and models for our benefit? This is why being connected to a small group is so crucial to spiritual growth. It's a regular opportunity to learn from each other."--Rick Warren's 40 Days of Community Workbook10

Thank God that our spiritual life and growth do not depend on the local church, as Rick Warren claims, but on our faith in the pure and holy, Almighty Lord God and His eternal truth. He is the One Who sustains us.

"As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby: if so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious." (1 Peter 2:2-3)

But the gross Scripture twisting and replacing God with community continues:

"For in him we live, and move, and have our being ..." (Acts 17:28)

"God challenges us to create a community where we love like our lives depend upon it (1 Peter 1:22, Msg), and where we can each 'live and move and have our being' (Acts 17:28, NIV)."--Rick Warren's 40 Days of Community Workbook (Parentheses in the original)11

Rick Warren is engaging in scriptural malpractice to support his unscriptural Shepherding-Discipleship beliefs.

"A related benefit of a local church is that it also provides the spiritual protection of godly leaders. God gives shepherd leaders the responsibility to guard, protect, defend, and care for the spiritual welfare of his flock...."

"Satan loves detached believers, unplugged from the life of the Body, isolated from God's family, and unaccountable to spiritual leaders, because he knows they are defenseless and powerless against his tactics." (PDL; pp. 135-136)

According to God's Word, the armor of God is given to us to stand against Satan and defend against "all the fiery darts of the wicked" (see Ephesians 6:11-17). Furthermore, the armor of God only includes truth, righteousness, the Gospel of peace, faith, salvation, and the Word of God. Nowhere is the armor of God said to include "the life of the Body" or the "spiritual protection" of "shepherd leaders." This is because God is about Christianity, not Churchianity.

On the other hand, Shepherding-Discipleship advocates, who very much want control over Christians, would love to have us believe that if we don't attend a local church we are not genuinely "following Christ." They would love to have us believe that apart from local churches we "are defenseless and powerless" and won't "survive spiritually." In order for them to gain control over the masses, the masses need to be coerced or intimidated into replacing Christianity with Churchianity. Incidentally, immediately following the previous quote regarding being "unplugged" is the heading, "It's All in the Church."
From Chapter 5 of In the Name of Purpose by Tamara Hartzell

 

Take the Test: Do You Discern or Do You Deny ... the TRUTH?

by Larry DeBruyn

Pastor Franklin Road Baptist

Marked for life: discernment ministry in light of Ezekiel 9:1-11.

Someone once said that sin is as much breaking God's heart as it is His Law. When God looked down on the perversity of the people on earth before the Deluge, it was recorded that He "was grieved in His heart" (Genesis 6:6b). When confronted by resident wickedness both without and within the professing church, Christians can manifest one of three reactions: approval (1 Corinthians 5:2), indifference (Zephaniah 1:12), or disapproval as indicated by the presence of either anger (Psalm 119:53) or grief (Psalm 119:136). So the question becomes, as we see the worldliness-wickedness invading the church, how do we feel about it? Are agitated by, indifferent to, or accommodating of it?

Not unlike the society and church of our times, during Ezekiel's ministry Judah found herself in a moral and spiritual "melt down." Fraud, violence, adultery, and idolatry were running rampant amongst God's chosen people. Idols had been set up in the Temple (Ezekiel 8:17; 9:9). From his location in Babylon, the Lord took Ezekiel on a virtual reality tour of the Temple, the place where on the Mercy Seat beneath the Cherubim, God's Shekinah glory was to have been seated (Ezekiel 8:4). What he saw in that place of worship stunned the prophet. On his guided tour of the inner court, the Lord showed the prophet where first the people had substituted an idol image for Yahweh; where second, the elders worshiped animals; where third, the women sobbed over the death of Tammuz, a mythological fertility god who had married the Egyptian goddess Ishtar; and where fourth, the priests worshiped the sun (Ezekiel 8:5-18). Up-close and personal, the prophet saw how the nation had abominated into apostasy, how Israel had turned from worshiping the Creator to idolizing the creation and its creatures (See Romans 1:21-23.).

Yet in the midst of all those "alternative spiritualities," and like the remnant of Elijah's day who refused to bow their knee to Baal and kiss the idol god (1 Kings 19:18), some believers preserved themselves to be holy unto the Lord. So the Lord instructed the angel dressed in white to mark an "X" on the foreheads of the faithful, a mark that would spare them from the coming divine judgment (circa 600 BC).[1] Most have heard about "the mark of the beast", the mark the deceived will receive at the end of the age, an identity without which they will neither be able to buy or sell (Revelation 14:9-12). The prophet Ezekiel wrote about a different mark, an "X" that was to be written on the foreheads of those in Judah who had refused to go along with the popular spiritual trends of that day. The "X" would spare them from the coming divine wrath. So the Lord instructed the angel: "Go through the midst of the city, even through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations which are being committed in its midst" (Ezekiel 9:4). Pause with me . . . for a moment let's project back to that era and ask ourselves the following question: If we had been alive in Ezekiel's day, would the angel have marked us to be spared from divine judgment?
Click here to continue reading ...

 

Back to (Contemplative) School - Christian Colleges in Crisis

In November 2004, Lighthouse Trails Research issued its first alert to Christian colleges that are promoting contemplative spirituality. The four colleges listed in that alert were San Francisco Theological Seminary, Biola University, Bethel University, and Lincoln Christian College and Seminary. Since then, several other alerts have been issued. What has become all too painfully clear is that the majority of Christian colleges in North America have in varying degrees begun to incorporate contemplative spirituality into their colleges. It is not just a few schools - it is most, and for those who understand the dangers of contemplative (and emerging), it is obvious that Christian colleges are in a crisis of faith.

The following is a list of the articles we have written on the college situation. Is your child's school listed here? It's worth checking out:

Biola University - January 2005

Dallas Theological Seminary - April 2005

Assemblies of God Theological Seminary - May/June 2005

Assemblies of God Theological Seminary - Article #2 - November 2005

Wheaton College Promoting Contemplative Spirituality - March 2006

Christian Colleges - A Dangerous Place For Young Christians - June 2006

Azusa Pacific University

Wheaton College

Back to School - Is Your College Student Safe? - August 2006

The Shape of Things to Come - Biola University - September 2006

Moody Bible - September 2006

Cedarville University - October 2006

Trinity Western University - December 2006

Liberty University - February 2007

A Glimpse of the Future of Christian Higher Education - March 2007

Prairie Bible Institute - August 2007

Liberty University - Article #2 - August 2007

Moody Bible Institute - Article #2 - September 2007

Briercrest College - September 2007

Southwest Baptist University - October 2007

Baylor University - November 2007

Belmont University - November 2007

Moody Bible Institute - Article #3 - November 2007

Prairie Bible Institute - Article #2 - November 2007

Southeastern University (AOG) - December 2007

Moody Bible Institute - Article #4 - January 2008

Palm Beach Atlantic University - January 2008

Cedarville University - January 2008

Nazarene Universities - February 2008

Liberty University - Article #3 - February 2008

University Student Stands Alone Against Emerging Spirituality - February 2008

Mount Vernon Nazarene - March 2008

Moody Bible Institute Looks for New President - August 1, 2008

Cedarville University - Article #3 - March 2008

Bethel University New President: "Catholic friends taught me about contemplative prayer." - July 3, 2008

Jonathan Falwell Becomes Vice-Chancellor at Liberty University - September 11, 2008

Ambrose University (CMA & Nazarene) Full Speed into Contemplative/Emergent - October 12, 2008

Biola University Student Reports on Contemplative Chapel Services - Warns Parents to Avoid Biola - October 20, 2008

Biola University Contacts Lighthouse Trails - Accuses of Libel - October 21, 2008

Non-Contemplative Pillsbury Baptist Bible College to Close - November 24, 2008

Southern Baptist Theological Seminary May Be Heading into Troubled Contemplative Waters - January 12, 2009

Keri Wyatt Kent Continues Leading Women Toward Contemplative - Moody Bible Institute Helps - February 12, 2009

Trevecca Nazarene University Promoting Contemplative Spirituality in No Small Way - February 18, 2009

Emergent/Mystical Leaders at Baylor University - April 13, 2009

Point Loma Nazarene University Welcomes Brian McLaren and Embraces Contemplative Spirituality - April 19, 2009

Gordon College in MA Brings Emerging Contemplative Spirituality to Students June 19, 2009

For more information:

Our database of Christian colleges using contemplative materials

Some Christian colleges that DON'T promote contemplative spirituality

 

Confusion over Names: Two Warren Smith's

Some confusion has arisen over the last few years regarding Lighthouse Trails author, Warren Smith, and another Christian writer named Warren Smith. To help eradicate confusion, Lighthouse Trails Warren Smith is now going by Warren B. Smith. The other Warren Smith is now going by Warren Cole Smith. Below are a few of the public works by each Warren to show their distinction:

 

Warren B. Smith

I. Author of the following books:

Deceived on Purpose (Mountain Stream Press)

The Light That Was Dark (Mountain Stream Press)

Reinventing Jesus Christ

A "Wonderful" Deception

 II. Speaker at the 2008 Calvary Chapel Senior Pastors Conference:

Standing Fast in the Last Days

 III. Publisher of Mountain Stream Press

IV. Website: www.newagetograce.com

 

Warren Cole Smith

II. Author of a new book titled A Lover's Quarrel with the Evangelical Church

III. Writer for Christian Worldview Network (Worldview Times)

IV. Contributing writer for World Magazine

 

 

27 More Days - 7 Year Anniversary Fall Special

 

For the month of September and October, Lighthouse Trails is offering the following special:

 

 A combination of any 10 titles of books/DVDs for a set price of $77.50, which is 40%-45% off the retail price of each title.

 

Normally, we offer 40% off the retail price on our published products when a customer buys 10 copies of any one title. With this Fall special, you may purchase any combination of our published books and DVDs, and as long as it totals 10, the price will be $77.50 (plus shipping).

 

This is a great chance to buy a variety of titles at wholesale prices.

 

To see the qualifying titles and for more information, click here. If you have any questions about this offer, please feel free to call us at 866/876-3910 or e-mail us at sales@lighthousetrails.com.

 

 

Bookmark and Share