Time To Stand Up and Take It Back

Today in chapel MacArthur spoke and had a question and answer time. Before he got into the question and answer time he was talking to us about what was going on with him and what he’d been doing. He talked about this meeting of the minds that has been happening about once a month over a phone conference. This circle of about 10 men includes the following: R.C. Sproul, John Piper, C.J. Mahaney, Mark Dever, Philip Ryken, Al Mohler, John MacArthur, and a couple of others. Over the last few months they have talked about what has happened with Evangelicalism and how three different circles have run away with the image of Evangelicalism. The first is the Charasmatic circle that includes Benny Hinn and TBN. The second circle is the ‘Religious Right’ like Pat Robertson. And the third is this seeker thing with Rick Warren and the Emerging Church with Brian McClaren.

He said that these three circles have so distorted the view of Evangelicalism, that they now no longer wish to be known as Evangelicals. So they are trying to come up with a name to identify themselves as and are working together to figure out how to take back the core of Christianity. Right now they are thinking about something like “Classic Christianity”. They have decided to all meet from January 4-6 to mull over these issues and to present a united front at reclaiming the Christian identity within our world.

This got me excited that these men are so convicted like this that they are willing to make such a radical change. Even the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS) has been going downhill just in the last few years. They have refused to speak out as a group (despite many men calling for it) of people who wish to say that God doesn’t know the future. They have surrendered doctrine for ‘success’ and have created a dangerous ambiguity. MacArthur said that Warren was on Larry King and someone called in and asked why Jesus wasn’t called a son of Moses since Moses is considered the greatest prophet in Judaism. Warren replied “Oh, that’s easy! Jesus didn’t come to be a prophet, but a king!” MacArthur said ‘So its basically just this “WHAT?!?”

This confusion and a new fear over theological debate and understanding are leading down a road that these men do not want to be associated with, and I just wish I could be a fly on the wall in that meeting. Just thought you guys might want to know about this. I’m sure we’ll all hear about the results of this in the time to come.

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7 comments on “Time To Stand Up and Take It Back

  1. Beth'sMomToo says:

    Do you suppose they’d let me come and make them coffee,just so I could listen? Just imagine! What a blessing that you are in a place that is discussing things like this. Keep us posted.

    The problem of a name…any label you come up with will eventually lose its original definition. Language is becoming increasingly sloppy. I have heard people argue over something and then discover that they were really in agreement, they just had different definitions of the terms! George Orwell – while I would certainly not promote his politics, I do recommend his writings concerning the importance of precise language and the meaning of words. Read his essays about this sometime. I certainly don’t think technology, such as the Internet, has helped the cause of precision of language! I think it was Orwell who said sloppy language eventually results in sloppy thinking. (to GREATLY paraphrase!)

  2. J.R. Freiberg says:

    I also liked how MacArthur closed his chat, saying that we as shepherds need to focus on feeding our sheep. The world is not going to change because some super-Christians have a conference and come up with a label. Its gonna change through men and women being faithful to the Word in whatever context they’ve been called to minister in.
    by the way why arent you in class right now?

  3. Beth says:

    What a great idea- I cringe everytime I try to explain what type of church I go to and I have to say the word “evangelical”. This goes right along with I John and anti-christ’s with a lower case a. Seeker churches etc. are anti-christ’s- leading people away from the real thing. My pastor told a story how at Grace- MacArthur’s church there were two new men who influenced a new Christian to pack up, leave and join their cult on the east coast. These men had a specific goal of taking men away from MacArthur’s church and Swindol’s church (I think). MacArthur intervened- confronted the man who was thinking of leaving- and then somehow it came about that the cult guy was running away and MacArthur physcially tackled him! How awesome is that to absolutely refuse to let one of your sheep go astray. They also arranged for the new christian to move in with some older Christians.

  4. Beth'sMomToo says:

    With the post-modern emphasis on “plurality” [which contrary to the true meaning (there’s that thing about accuracy of language again!), has come in practice to mean believing in nothing, that all “truths” are equally valid and individually perceived (existential)], I surmise the current attitude of “tolerance” has deterred many shepherd’s from their Biblically-based, God-given responsibility to guard their sheep. How did the modern concept of tolerance become such a be-all and end-all that even intelligent debate is no longer “polite” and that there is no real, overriding “truth” to be found?

  5. T-Bone says:

    beth,
    I definately haven’t heard that story, but I have heard the stories of different men who have rebelled against John’s authority, like Darwin Fish. look him up online. he’s crazy. anyhoo.

    John,
    yeah, i liked what MacArthur said about just being faithful in your own church and don’t get frustrated when other churches aren’t doing what you are.

    Mom,
    Steve was talking about the Post-Modern thinker and how everything is relative and there aren’t necessarily things we can write in stone. He said if you have a friend like that, take them out to eat at a nice place and then stick them with the check. see if they think its a bad thing. that made me laugh.

  6. T-Bone says:

    John,
    I wasn’t in class because I got out early of my other class, and was finishing my Hebrew Ex paper so I could then studying for the Theo Final.

  7. Beth'sMomToo says:

    I liked Steve’s suggestion.;) Another good question to ask concerning “tolerance” is to question how far they would be tolerant – tolerant of Nazis? tolerant of child sexual abuse? tolerant of wife beating? And how do they come about determining their answer?

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