Letter to the Editor: The “Mentoring-Leadership” From the Past Four Decades That Has Caused Downward Paradigm Shift

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To Lighthouse Trails:

It is without question that we have followed the writings and website of LT for some time.  The steady stream of serious departures from sound teaching has been documented by your many writers.  The list of leaders, movements, and ministries would fill volumes as they, indeed, have in my repertoire included virtually every nationally known leader in evangelicalism whether at the seminary level or in our local churches.

christian-leadersAt one time, in the 1950s, one could find dozens of Bible Churches with sound pastoral leadership and outstanding music (e.g. Moody Church choir at the time under Richard Dinwiddie).  There is no way these kinds of churches would ever fall prey to compromise, ecumenism, or contemporary music shifts–or would they?

The last two or three decades has experienced a virtual paradigm shift in the quality of [non]expository preaching, music, and the inroads of so-called “biblical” counseling, which now looks more like psychotherapeutic clinics than local church ministry to believers who need spiritual guidance.

It became a mystery to me how we could transition from solid mature Bible teaching and exemplary leadership to that of Seeker to Purpose-Driven to Warren’s P.E.A.C.E. mania along with the shelving of our priceless hymns for a contemporary conundrum of repetitious hand-waving amplified decibels of sounds that crush the ear membranes, i.e. until I came across an old document in my files related to the Promise Keepers Movement (I have dozens of stored files on this movement).

What captured my attention was not the movement!  It was the “mentoring-leadership” shown at high seminary levels of the eventual blending of Catholicism (the late Dr. Chuck Colson spoke at one of D.T.S.’s graduations), contemporary “Christian” music, and charismatic leaders into the mix of evangelism, counseling, and music fields including dozens of nationally known evangelicals.  It was not surprising, therefore, to see the very rapid acceptance of marginal Christianity in the leadership of Hybels, Warren, Bright, and now emergent leaders such as Rob Bell, Brian McLaren, and the more extreme theological departures of such leadership.

My heart is very saddened with the compromise of the late Howard Hendricks (at one time one of my four favorite teachers at seminary).  I had written to him but was given mild rebuke for being critical of the PK movement.  I filed it away but now see the “rubbed shoulder” philosophy affecting virtually every former evangelical leader including Dr. Erwin Lutzer and others.

The purpose of this e-mail is to encourage someone there to put together a booklet that synthesizes these trends into one gradual, but obvious, move into apostate Christianity.



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