First, consider this Bible reference:
“Master,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we tried to stop him, because he is not one of us.”
“Do not stop him,” Jesus said, “for whoever is not against you is for you.”
That seems like an absolute proclamation. Jesus certainly did not say, “Whoever preaches my doctrines exactly according to some standard made long ago is for you.”
And yet we have this from some bigoted Christian:
The 5 Most Dangerous Wolves Preying on Christians
That quote in red was another direct quote from Jesus. So who are these “wolves”?
5. Andy Stanley
Image Credit Wikipedia
Stanley is the senior pastor of Atlanta mega-church North Point Community Church and several satellite churches. His theology has become continually squishy and his church has a history of crossing into the profane during the worship services. While noting his increasing theological liberalism, however, I believed that there were several more dangerous candidates for this list. That changed a couple of weeks ago.
In a recent sermon, Stanley had the audacity to challenge the authority of the Bible. In fact, he now believes that the Gospels were written a couple of hundred years after the life of Jesus. At this point, he’s a short step away from Walter Bauer’s claims that orthodoxy simply reflects the winners of ecclesiastical battles and not the truth of the Gospel as revealed by Jesus Christ and taught throughout the Bible. Leading people into a religion that allows its adherents to pick and choose from the Bible what they want to believe and/or follow, Andy Stanley is leading people away from true faith in Jesus Christ.
Whenever the Gospels were written, they lack credibility on serious issues like the events and circumstances regarding the birth of Jesus. Refusing to lie about the Bible is consistent with the commandment supposedly from God Himself, “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.”
4. Matthew Vines
Matthew Vines first burst onto the evangelical scene with his 2012 YouTube video “The Gay Debate: the Bible and Homosexuality.” His subsequent book, God and the Gay Christian, stirred up much confusion among Christians reeling from the increased social pressure to affirm homosexuality as good. As many theologians have pointed out, Vines’ hermeneutical approach to the Bible allows for no outside mediation in reference to one’s own prejudices. Not to mention that his claims about homosexuality and the Bible have been refuted several times over. Unfortunately, many people have unthinkingly bought Vines’ lies wholesale. Vines has chosen the lust of the flesh over obeying God. Possibly worse, he’s dedicated his life to deceiving others.
Bullshit! The entire case against homosexuality from a Christian perspective is that it is a sin. But how do you sin? By choice. But if people, even those raised in and very loyal to Christianity, are still gay, that means God Himself made them that way and so how can one seriously claim that homosexuality is a sin, without also leading to the logical conclusion that God Himself is a sinner? Either that, or he does not condemn homosexuality at all. So which is it, Christian homophobes? PICK ONE OF THOSE TWO OPTIONS! It does not matter what a Bible written by MEN said thousands of years ago. And the phrase “Vines’ hermeneutical approach to the Bible allows for no outside mediation in reference to one’s own prejudices…” is projection at its most laughable.
3. Jim Wallis (Sojourners)
Unlike the other names on this list, Jim Wallis may not as be as well known among evangelicals. His influence, however, snakes throughout most of the internal attacks on the Church and the absolute truth of God’s Word. As founder and editor of Sojourners, Wallis is one of the primary leaders in the resurgence of the heretical Social Gospel movement. Turning people away from the truth that their primary problem is their individual sin before a holy God, Wallis and his ilk teach that humanity’s greatest problem is the oppression of each other. Further, as a prominent figure in the Red Letter Christian movement, Wallis explicitly denies the inerrancy of the entire Bible. Briefly, Red Letter Christians run roughshod over the Bible’s clear teaching that the entire book is the word of God (Jesus). Discarding basically every tenet of actual orthodoxy, Jim Wallis repackages Christianity in a form that appeals to those who want to claim to be a Christian but without actually submitting to God.
The Social Gospel is about taking the teachings of Jesus and applying them to both reality and to society as a whole, not just to individuals, though individuals may need guidance too. It does not contradict the Bible at all. The claim that “Wallis explicitly denies the inerrancy of the entire Bible…[and] Red Letter Christians run roughshod over the Bible’s clear teaching that the entire book is the word of God (Jesus). ,” is especially noteworthy. You know who else denied that the entire Bible is the Word of God? JESUS HIMSELF! So now we know that the author of that nonsense is a liar defaming fellow Christians!
2. Rachel Held Evans
Rachel Held Evans has become synonymous with “straw-man attacks on Christianity.” Her constant drumbeat of anti-evangelicalism is only bested by her continual evangelistic efforts for liberalism — both politically and theologically. Recently, Evans made news by encouraging pro-life Christians to vote for Hillary Clinton. In the piece, her arguments are those of a supporter of abortion even though she claims to be pro-life. For example (the most obvious example), she declares that she believes “abortion is morally wrong in most cases [emphasis added].” Well, if abortion is the murder of babies, and abortion is most definitely the murder of babies, then abortion is morally wrong in all cases.
Evans is an expert at shifting terms and definitions around, and she uses that dishonest skill to sow confusion in the minds of her readers. Her track record consists of rejecting the authority of the Bible, embracing the heresy of universalism, and declaring good what God has declared evil (homosexuality, same-sex marriage, erased gender distinctions, etc.), among other serious errors/heresies. Sadly, many are following evangelicalism’s Pied Piper straight to hell.
Actually, the Bible nowhere says that abortion is the murder of babies. The writer above is reading something into the Bible that is not there. Of course, there is nothing wrong with having an OPINION about abortion, whether based on what the Bible says or not. It’s when you try to make that opinion the basis for laws that impact lives other than your own that the ethical trouble arises. Quite simply, if you are someone that cannot get pregnant, you have no business even talking about the issue, let alone trying to control the lives of those who CAN get pregnant. WHAT ARROGANCE!
And as for her “shifting terms and definitions around”, maybe that stems from her responding to real needs of real people in real time and not some dogmatic claims and commandments from long ago. THAT is what genuine religion is about, as well as fair politics.
1. Joel Osteen
The Prosperity Gospel may very well be the most destructive heresy plaguing Christianity today. Preying on the hurting, weak, and vulnerable, the Prosperity Gospel empties the Good News of Jesus of all its power unto salvation and replaces it with a man-centered religion that is defined by a warped version of the most materialistic aspects of the American Dream. The list of Prosperity Gospel preachers who take advantage of the naïve and hurting is long, and includes such anti-luminaries as Kenneth Copeland, Creflo Dollar, and T.D. Jakes. But none have reached the level of influence that the number-one wolf on this list enjoys.
What makes Osteen especially dangerous is his soft-peddling of his heresies. When faced with criticism of Osteen, many Christians will quickly admit that he has his problems, but they’ll end with the rejoinder that Osteen’s ministry has been a blessing in their life, nonetheless. Slowly but surely, these deceived Christians are allowing a teaching to affect them that flatly contradicts the teachings of Jesus, the Apostle Paul, and the entire canon of Scriptures: that Christ followers are called to suffer.
Turning hearts away from the hope found only in Jesus Christ, Joel Osteen is dangling the shiny false salvation of earthly prosperity in the eyes of people who are hurting. Jesus had something to say about those who prey on his vulnerable disciples — “it would be better for him to have a great millstone around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.”
I actually agree that the “Prosperity Gospel” is a bad thing for Christians to take seriously. But not because I am a Christian.It is because I do not measure people’s worth in terms of material possessions one may have. In any case, Jesus did condemn the wealthy.
And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.
But the fact remains that Osteen is clearly not against Jesus.
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Remember Luke 9:49-50 above?
Is the writer, by attacking Osteen as a false teacher, putting himself above Jesus by contradicting him?
I have just as much right to call John Ellis a false teacher as he does to call others false. And unlike that hypocrite, I can back up my positions with both scripture and REALITY itself! Ellis does not even have scripture for his support!
What is dangerous about Christianity? Nothing.
Ideas don’t harm people. If these people weren’t Christian, they would still harm people.
Ideas are what makes society what it has come to be. Take Communism as described by Marx : humans have interpreted it for their own ends , it’s the way we work.
“But how do you sin? By choice. But if people, even those raised in and very loyal to Christianity, are still gay,”
There are 2 schools of thought regarding how homosexuality. #1 is that it is genetic and #2 it is a choice (or series of choices). Of course if we go with premise #1, then it can be corrected through genetic engineering (not that I believe that we should be doing that). However, they do not want that choice because it can be fixed. If we go with premise #2, then it was a choice that they made and now the person is responsible for their choices, which is not wanted either.
I believe that our sexual preference, the most part, was based on choices from a young age that we made in life or that were made for us (i.e. like someone getting raped at a young age (unfortunately there are evil people in the world) and they now hate the opposite sex). I’ll have to find the article, but there was a therapist who was treating this young boy who was playing with dolls and dressing like a girl. Most of society would have been like, he is just expressing his desires, leave him alone. The therapist after talking with him found out that his parents just had a new baby girl and the parents were so focused on the baby he rationalized that girls must be more important to his parents, so he started acting like a girl. Once the parents heard this, they made sure to spend more time with him and his behavior changed. She mentioned also that unfortunately that she has seen things like this many times. Other therapists have stated likewise.
So if it is a choice, then yes, it is a sin.
“Actually, the Bible nowhere says that abortion is the murder of babies.”
First of all, I believe that abortion should not be a form of birth control. If someone decides to have unprotected sex, they should deal with the consequences. Even if protection doesn’t work, it is a choice that they made. Imagine if someone walks into a bank and steals $1 and flees the scene. They make it away and will not be caught, but an hour or so later they have a change of heart and realize that what they did was wrong so they go back to the bank and put the dollar on the counter and say “No harm no foul. No one was hurt.” and they start to walk away. They will be arrested and sent to jail. In other words, they still have to deal with the consequences of their action. Of course, if the girl is underage or in the case of rape or if more than 1 doctor deems that carrying the baby to term has a good chance of killing the to-be mom then I think it is their choice at that point. The Bible is pretty clear though, God affirmed throughout scripture the value of every human life. Exodus 20:13 – “You shall not murder. Psalms 139: 13-15 – “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.” Psalms 127:3-5 – “Children are a heritage from the LORD, offspring a reward from him. Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their opponents in court.” Exodus 21:22-25 – “If people are fighting and hit a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely but there is no serious injury, the offender must be fined whatever the woman’s husband demands and the court allows. But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.” Indicating that there is punishment (a fine or worse) for injuring an unborn child.
First, it is my understanding that the causes and nature of homosexuality are still unknown, so any unscientific speculation on the matter is pointless.
Second, that therapist treating the boy who was dressing and acting like a girl must have used some technique to drive the boy to give up what he was doing. I’ve never heard before of a child behaving a certain way because a younger child of the opposite gender was born; that just seems too implausible. Shaming children for being transgender can sometimes lead to them committing suicide when they are older; it’s not worth it to keep supporting your bigotry just because of what extremist religion has taught you.
Third, your scenario about the repentant bank robber is ridiculous. If people go to jail anyway even if they agree to return what was stolen, that actually makes crime more of a problem, not less, because the criminals now have no motivation to admit what they did and offer to make restitution on their own. And more to the point: It is clear that normal people CANNOT suppress their sex drive and calling their having sex occasionally a choice is like calling someone eating any sort of food, drinking water, and breathing oxygen a choice. It is STUPID for anyone to say that! You might choose what kind of food to eat, but you still have to eat to survive. Our sex drives are so strong to force us to reproduce; without them we would be extinct in a century or two. And those overactive sex drives were for people who lived in caves, whose average life span was less than 40 years, who starting having babies in their teens and generally had to have eight to ten children due to the high infant and maternal mortality rates in the times before medicine was invented. Today, we need to moderate our sexual activity to limit the damage to our world from overpopulation, but expecting unmarried people to suppress their sex drive completely is no better than asking them to starve themselves to death.
Finally, quoting from the Psalms is pointless because these were lyrics of songs written by people like King David in praise of God, not teachings from God himself. You betray your ignorance by referring to them here as if they are credible arguments. And your interpretation of Exodus 21:22-25 is flat out WRONG, because in the original Hebrew, the phrase “her fruit comes out” is used, indicating that the writers of that law did NOT consider a fetus to be on the same level as an already born child. BTW, most newborns do not have their teeth out yet, so why the reference to “tooth for tooth” if that and the rest of that passage referred to the baby being injured and not its mother?
Hypocrites that run most Christian institutions depend on ignorant and delusional people like you to support them financially. Wake up and seek the truth, it really WILL set you free!
I agree that they still won’t settle on which way it happens, but there was no electro shock therapy on the boy, nor harsh methods. The boy told the counselor that his parents just loved his sister because they spent so much time with her. Kids can and do internalize a lot of stuff and most kids, especially around 4 or 5, don’t go straight to their parents and ask things like, “Do you love her more than me?” Once the adults heard the response, they changed their ways and the behavior changed. He wasn’t transgender. Of course it very well may have come out that way.
The point about the bank robber was simply this. If you do something there are consequences. Regardless if you change your mind, you have to deal with the consequences. Abortion is used a lot to erase the consequences.
Oh I forgot, you are such the Biblical scholar, especially when you quote things that aren’t there. Lol. There are tons of reference to God caring about life outside of Psalms.
Right, you are the most delusional and bigoted person that I have witnessed on the internet and that is saying a lot. Your say your take is unbiased and skeptical view, but your rants are just far from that and frankly crazy. Have you been taking your meds? I can totally understand how that would drive someone away…
(Dale Husband: And when you make a totally unnecessary insult like that above because I directly answered you instead of bowing down to your supposed holiness, you get BANNED. You must be that same John Ellis that wrote the bigoted essay I picked apart in the original blog entry of mine. It is arrogant people like YOU that do more to make Christianity look evil than any harsh criticisms I might make. Goodbye and good riddance!)
Regarding #4, all people are inclined to sin. Not just homosexuals. We are inclined to lie, inclined to lust, inclined to be jealous. If people are inclined to sin, does that make God a sinner? I dont think so.
Way to miss my actual point, Sherlock. I guess they never taught you reading comprehension.
Ah yes, now I notice that you were talking about it being sinful to BE gay. Well these days to “be gay” primarily means simply to be attracted to the same sex. But does the Bible say that’s sinful? I doubt it does.
Most instances in the Bible where the topic of homosexuality is raised, are about the sex act. In the story of Sodom & Gomorrah we have homosexual rape of visitors, in Leviticus we have the sex act. In Romans 1 we have the sex act, and actively lusting is also condemned. The Bible says that engaging in gay sex, is sinful. But what if you’re same-sex attracted and celibate? Is that sinful? I doubt it is.
Now we can talk like adults.
I believe that it is celibacy that is unnatural, not homosexuality. If celibacy was natural, we would have at least as many people that are not inclined to engage in sexual relations with anyone as we have of members of the LGBT community. But the only community in the world that is largely celibate is the clergy of the Roman Catholic Church and the enormous number of child sex abuses that have been revealed as taking place among Catholic clergy is proof to me that celibacy should be abandoned among them. I think suppressing the normal sex drive damages the personalty, causing perversions such as pedophilia to emerge later.
The condemnations of homosexuality in the Bible were written by ignorant men who were brought up in a tribal society in which men and women were expected to follow certain family roles passed down from their parents and other elders. We don’t have that kind of society here in the modern United States.
The incident you refer to in the Bible story of Sodom & Gomorrah involved an attempt at violations of personal autonomy by rapists, not homosexuality itself. STOP EQUATING SEXUAL DEVIANCY WITH SEXUAL VIOLENCE! That is exactly what gets gays MURDERED.
Celibacy certainly sounds challenging, but analysis indicates it doesn’t cause pedophillia –
The Biblical condemnations of homosexual sex were written by people, sometimes prophets, sometimes the greatest epostle of the New Testament, who claimed to be speaking for God. If we are going to conclude that those words were not from God, then we are being very inconsistent if we believe their other statements in Scripture WERE from God.
(Dale Husband: The problem is that you assume that God created the universe and mankind, so it would be logical to also assume that the universe itself is the ultimate source of truth about God, not any man-made book, period. Even Moses taught this. He said:
Deuteronomy 18:22: “”When a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.”
Ezekiel was certainly NOT speaking the word of God when he predicted the destruction of Tyre by the Babylonians and even that it would never be rebuilt. It was never destroyed and it still stands.
Just because something is recorded in the Bible does not mean it is true or even from God at all. The Bible itself does not say that, so no Jew or Christian should believe it. Many of them do because they have been brainwashed by dishonest teachers. The creation stories in the Book of Genesis claim the Earth to be only a few thousand years old, but we know from science that cannot be true. And if that’s the case, why believe the irrational teachings in the Bible about homosexuality?)
Then I am just curious as to what your take is on Matthew 5:27-28 when Jesus states: “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” It is pretty clear that just desiring someone that you are not married to (whether or not same sex and staying celibate) is a sin.
Good point. Of course, if the “adultery” is done with the full consent and knowledge of the spouse, that may be considered polyamory or an open marriage. What is immoral is CHEATING on your spouse, defined as committing adultery and not telling the spouse about it or even lying about it. But the Bible fails to make that distinction, a clear sign that its writers didn’t think too deeply on issues like consent or mutual respect for everyone involved.
Thus a man who rapes and impregnates his wife regardless of her feelings is considered acceptable by “Biblical” standards, while a gay relationship by mutual consent is not. And that is the logical failure of the whole concept. It should have been thrown out long ago.
Anyone who thinks that rape is acceptable by Biblical standards, may not have read the New Testament.
(Dale Husband: Is that all you got? Come on, where are your details? Specific references are what can sell your case.)
I still think that “open marriages” are still sin based on how Jesus mentions adultery above. While you can look lustfully at your wife, you are not committing a sin, however, as soon as you do so with someone outside your marriage, you are committing adultery (as Jesus stated). So whether or not your spouse is giving you consent, it is still a sin.