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The Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ in the air is described for us in 1Thessalonians 4:13-18 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
Dr. Manfred Kober was a Professor for many years at Faith Baptist Bible College in Ankeny, Iowa. His four page paper for the Faith Pulpit is worth a read at https://www.manfredkober.com/materials/FP/1988_1001_How%20Soon%20the%20Rapture.pdf.
If you do not know what the Gospel is Paul gives forth the Gospel in 1Corinthians 15:1- 11 ¶ Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: 5 And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: 6 After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. 7 After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. 8 And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time. 9 For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. 10 But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. 11 Therefore whether it were I or they, so we preach, and so ye believed.
Romans 13:4 tells us the government is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
Acts 5:27-29 And when they had brought them, they set them before the council: and the high priest asked them,28 Saying, Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.29 Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.
Canadian Pastor ‘Phil, his associate pastor Cody Butler, and their church, His Tabernacle Community Church in Saint John, New Brunswick have been at the centre of a fight for religious freedom during the pandemic lockdown on society. The church and pastoral duo have been under constant surveillance by law enforcement and health authorities after refusing to police their congregation for COVID restriction compliance from the pulpit.
Restrictions when His Tabernacle Church first came on the radar of the province required places of worship to encourage vaccination, contract-trace congregations right down to the pew church goers sit in, force worshippers to mask and social distance, enforce arbitrary capacity limits, and ban singing.
For refusing to be the eyes and ears, and the enforcement arm of the state inside their church, Phil, Cody, the church and their families were visited repeatedly and watched by cops. Cody was arrested and hauled out of the church as he was giving the Thanksgiving Sunday service. Phil was summoned to court and sent straight to jail for over a week. The church has been locked by the province, and Phil has been giving services in a tent outside in a maritime winter — and now he’s in trouble for that!’https://www.rebelnews.com/nb_pastor_who_spent_a_week_in_jail_back_in_court_this_week_for_holding_church_in_a_tent?utm_campaign=rb_01_05_2022&utm_medium=email&utm_source=therebel
‘GREENVILLE, S.C. (November 19, 2021) – BJU Seminary is expanding its corps of “pastor-professors” with the appointment of Dr. Billy Gotcher, renowned for revitalizing churches and Christian institutions, and the return of Dr. Sam Horn, senior pastor of Palmetto Baptist Church and former Bob Jones University executive vice president and BJU Seminary dean.
Their addition further builds on the “people” plank of BJU Seminary’s 5P Plan to achieve its 500 x 5 x 5 strategic vision of putting 500 pastors in the pulpit in the next five years—and every five years after that. Gotcher and Horn join more than 10 faculty members currently engaged in full-time pastoral ministry or key church leadership positions.
The Seminary also announced that Dr. Horn and Dr. Ken Casillas are leading a series of intensive Expositors’ Weekday Workshops for South Carolina pastors. Churches interested in hosting such an event can find information on format and contacts here.’https://today.bju.edu/news/gotcher-horn-expand-bju-seminary-pastor-professor-corps/
Is this good or bad?
How many Canadian police does it take to arrest a Pastor?
When the government tells pastors what they can and cannot preach there is no stopping what the government will do! Thankfully, ‘Pastor and theologian John MacArthur of Grace Community Church in Los Angeles is calling on pastors to preach about the “biblical view of sexual morality” on Jan. 16 in opposition to a Canadian law banning therapy for unwanted sexual attractions and gender confusion — what is often derisively referred to as conversion therapy — set to take effect next month.
MacArthur, known for his syndicated broadcast program “Grace to You,” published an open letter on the Grace Community Church website Tuesday calling on “ministers of the Gospel” to join him on the third Sunday of the new year in preaching about “a biblical view of sexual morality.”
MacArthur stated that he received a letter from Pastor James Coates of GraceLife Church in Edmonton, Alberta, a graduate of the MacArthur-led The Master’s Seminary who made headlines when he was imprisoned for hosting in-person services in defiance of government lockdown orders.
Coates alleged that Bill C-4, which passed by the Canadian House and Senate earlier this month, “directly comes against parents and counselors who would seek to offer biblical counsel with respect to sexual immorality and gender.”
The law amends the criminal code to make illegal so-called conversion therapy, removing a child from Canada to undergo conversion therapy, advertising or promoting conversion therapy and receiving a material benefit for providing conversion therapy.
Specifically, the law slated to go into effect on Jan. 8 describes the belief that “heterosexuality, cisgender gender identity, and gender expression that conforms to the sex assigned to a person at birth are to be preferred over other sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions” as a “myth.”
Critics describe conversion therapy as counseling or efforts to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity through religious-based counseling or more controversial treatments like electric shock therapy.
However, some counselors and Christian ministries have warned that their counseling for people experiencing unwanted same-sex attraction is misunderstood and that “conversion therapy” is a politically charged term designed to mislead the public about the work they do.
Critics of such bills contend that the propagation of the narrative of conversion therapy being similar to electric shock therapy has become a “straw man” to promote “one-sided and biased counseling methods,” considering those types of treatments are already considered in the medical world to be “barbaric and unethical.”
C-4’s opponents claim that the language is too broad and could essentially ban religious leaders from preaching the teachings on sexual ethics and marriage found in the Bible or counseling a person with unwanted attractions or saying that homosexuality is sinful.
Andrew DeBartolo, the teaching elder at Encounter Church in Kingston, Ontario, told MacArthur in a letter that “the belief in God’s design for marriage and sexuality will now be seen as a myth” beginning on Jan. 8.
“Since this law takes effect on January 8, 2022, faithful Canadian pastors are going to preach on the issue, calling for a biblical understanding of sexual sin, the eternal judgment that falls on the unrepentant and gospel-rejecting sinners, and the grace of God in the gospel which offers forgiveness to those who repent and believe in Christ,” MacArthur wrote. “In 1 Corinthians 6:9–11, Paul clearly articulates why we must speak the truth.”
“Our calling as gospel ministers is to preach the truth, confront sin, and call all men to repentance and obedience to the gospel—the good news that achieves soul conversion and saves sinners from eternal wrath,” he added.
Several states in the U.S. have passed bans on conversion therapy, including MacArthur’s home state of California. MacArthur claims the California government “sought to prohibit any correction of an unbiblical view of sexual identity.”
A Christian therapist filed a lawsuit earlier this year in Washington state, alleging that the state’s 2018 ban on conversion therapy was a political attempt to silence dissent and “impose its own new orthodoxy concerning sexual morality.” However, his claim was rejected by a federal judge in September.
In 2019, a federal judge dismissed an ex-gay psychotherapists lawsuit against Maryland’s ban on mental health professionals providing conversion therapy.
As the United Kingdom Parliament has renewed efforts to pass a conversion therapy ban, concern was raised by the Evangelical Alliance that clergy might potentially face criminal prosecution. However, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson assured religious leaders that pastors wouldn’t be criminally charged for counseling people with unwanted same-sex attraction.’https://www.christianpost.com/news/john-macarthur-urges-pastors-to-preach-on-sexual-morality-jan-16.html?uid=d3769f0ce2&utm_source=The+Christian+Post+List&utm_campaign=CP-Newsletter&utm_medium=email
‘Earlier we documented Bob Jones University (BJU) stepping into ecumenical compromise with Franklin Graham. See BJU Embraces Franklin Graham’s Ecumenical Movement. That was the latest among many excursions, engineered by BJU president Steve Pettit, into non-separatist evangelicallism and the ecumenical movement. From Dr. David Beale’s new book Christian Fundamentalism in America I included a brief excerpt in the BJU/Graham article above and in the BJU: Compromised Spiritual Sanctification for Secular Pragmatism article. Dr. David Beale has written an article to expand on and bolster his argument. That article follows.
“After being the premier fundamentalist academic institution for eighty-seven years, BJU elected Dr. Steve Pettit in 2014, as the president who steered the University out of separatist Fundamentalism into the inclusive, Broad Evangelical movement,” David Beale, Christian Fundamentalism in America (Maitland, FL: Xulon, 2021), 179, 530.
• Dr. Andy Naselli, in his 2006 BJU dissertation, scorns independent, Fundamental Baptists for giving invitations to “surrender oneself to God.” Naselli criticizes the practice and calls it a “second blessing.” Naselli unsuccessfully tried to identify the Fundamentalist movement with Keswick extremes on the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Naselli then identified with Broad Evangelicalism. He now serves on the faculty of John Piper’s College and Seminary, which are Reformed Charismatic schools urging every Christian to seek all NT gifts, including tongues and healing. Piper claims that “Signs and wonders” and all spiritual gifts of 1 Corinthians 12:8-10 are valid for today and must be “earnestly desired.” Piper says, “Prophecy and tongues will continue until Jesus comes.”1 Naselli is a pastor of Piper’s Bethlehem Baptist Church.
Naselli seeks to transform Fundamentalists into Evangelicalism. In 2019, Dr. Pettit brought Naselli back to BJU to present the lectures for the annual Steward Custer Lecture Series. Naselli’s books were promoted. The late Dr. Custer all his life had been a stalwart Fundamentalist. Naselli represents Broad Evangelicalism. The bond between BJU and Evangelicalism has been clear since the beginning of Pettit’s administration.
• Dr. Sam Horn was executive vice president for enrollment and ministerial advancement at Bob Jones University when, on 2-7-2020, Dr. Pettit announced to all, “Dr. Horn is greatly honored today, and BJU is honored to have one of its own become the next president of The Master’s University and Seminary.” Horn succeeded Dr. John Stead. Dr. John MacArthur, a leading Evangelical, had led The Master’s University and Seminary as president from 1984 to 2018. Dr. Pettit preached for John MacArthur in a conference that year (2020). John Street, Chair of Biblical Counseling at The Master’s University, spoke at BJU’s CoRE Conference March 9–10, 2020. Street is an adjunct professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. By claiming that the word Fundamentalism can have no single definition,2 BJU leaders claim the label separatist but practice non-separatism (inclusivism). With such a notion, BJU attempts to sit on both sides of the fence—Fundamentalism and Evangelicalism—at the same time.
• Under Dr. Pettit’s administration, BJU students are permitted to bond with churches of denominations harboring apostasy.3 The following churches (underscored below) are among those approved for BJU students to attend.
• Covenant Community (Taylors, SC): An Orthodox Presbyterian Church (OPC). On one of their website videos, the pastor poured water on a little child’s head and said, “This is like Abraham’s ‘baptizing his whole house’” (Genesis 17). The pastor substituted the word baptism for the word circumcision and called it regeneration. Augustine and Roman Catholicism devised and standardized this doctrine, which assumes an OT circumcisional regeneration for Jewish males.4 Romanism transformed that doctrine into NT water baptismal regeneration to elect infants. Forms of that doctrine passed into Reformed theology. John Calvin insisted that OT circumcision engrafted the Jewish infant into the covenant [elect] family of God; thus, NT baptism engrafts a newborn child into the body of Christ.5 Reformed doctrine leads many to believe the seed of regeneration is implanted at infant baptism, though salvation might occur later.6
• Woodruff Road Presbyterian Church (Simpsonville, SC), PCA church.
• Second Presbyterian Church (Greenville, SC): A Presbyterian Church in America (PCA). This church’s senior pastor is Dr. Richard Phillips, adjunct professor and member of the Board of Trustees at Westminster Theological Seminary, which enforces no dress codes and allows the use of alcoholic beverages.7
➢ Richard Phillips is also on the Board of Directors of (1) the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals; (2) the Council of The Gospel Coalition, and (3) the Council of the Gospel Reformation Network.8
➢ On October 12, 2019, at Phillips’ Second Presbyterian Church, Dr. Pettit participated in a Conference on Reformed Theology.
• To begin chapel on February 5, 2018, Dr. Pettit announced, “We are honored this morning to have as our guest Dr. Gene Fant,” president of North Greenville University, a Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) school. Prior to preaching the chapel message, Fant was welcomed with a standing ovation.9 The so-called “SBC Conservative Resurgence” has now spiraled into a deadening mix.10
• Calvary First Baptist Church (Greenville, SC): SBC church.
• Roper Mountain Baptist Church (Greenville): SBC church.
• Rock Springs Baptist Church (Easley, SC): SBC church. Dr. Pettit, BJU President, spoke here October 6, 2019.
• White Oak Baptist Church (Greenville, SC): Affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, the South Carolina Baptist Convention, and the Greenville Baptist Association. Their lead pastor is Lonnie Polson, BJU Division Chair of Communication of the School of Fine Arts. Their music director is Jeff Stegall, BJU Associate Professor in the Theatre Arts Department.
• For the article, “Bob Jones University Embraces Franklin Graham’s Ecumenical Movement: HaveYou Finally Seen Enough?” click the following link: BJU Embraces Franklin Graham….
• Dr. Steve Pettit permits dress style, music, and entertainment of the world’s style. For the Artist Series of January 27, 2015, he brought in the music group, “Cantus,” which includes beer drinkers and known homosexuals.11
• The following letter was sent to me on 10-14-2021 from a concerned grandfather who has grandchildren at BJU:
In 2021, at Bob Jones University, the first of the fall semester’s artist series was conducted on October 7 in the FMA. The program was titled “Symphonic Hollywood: Featuring the Music of Lee Holdridge.” The guest conductor was Richard Kaufman. The featured selections were beautifully done, and each was announced by Kaufman, interspersed with lavish praise on BJU and its leadership. Kaufman mentioned his background which included his participation with a Los Angeles orchestra in which he played violin for the recording of music for “Animal House,” a raunchy R-rated movie. He expressed no regret for its production. On the contrary, he mentioned that his contribution helped launch his career as a conductor. Not once did he mention any conflict between Christian beliefs and the moral cesspool of Hollywood. Nor did he give any confirmation of Christian belief. Yet he gave the impression that a believer could function contentedly in such an environment. Toward the end of the program, Jay Matthews and another representative, on behalf of the University, awarded Kaufman with a certificate and plaque granting him lifetime membership as an honorary alumnus of BJU. In the program notes on Kaufman, the bio states that “his wife Gayle is a former dancer and actress in film, television, and on Broadway, and his daughter, Whitney, is a highly successful singer and actress.”
All of this conveys to BJU students that a vocation in the worldly Hollywood scene is perfectly acceptable and, indeed highly commendable. The artist series productions have in recent years included more Broadway-type productions, mingled with the brilliant work of such Christian artists as Dan Forrest. “Broadway” sums up the philosophy of the new Bob Jones University— broad and inclusive.
Students are not learning to distinguish the true from the false kinds of entertainment, evangelicalism, and life-styes. This is lamentable and tragic. There was a day when Bob Jones University could be trusted to instill in its students the virtues of a separated godly lifestyle. Now the University simply wants to “fit into” the culture, to accommodate and even imitate its behavior.
Believers identified with the SBC, PCA, OPC, etc. are lending credibility to false teachers and false gospels. The believer who willingly does such is living in sin. People all over the country know that BJU is Evangelical. It is old news. Evangelicals often say, “Identification is a non-essential.” That mindset constitutes the difference between Evangelicalism and Fundamentalism! Indifference is dangerous! It is a path God forbids! “For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds” (2 John verse 11). One’s personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ determines his church identification! “Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward” (2 John vs. 8). We must never entangle the message of the gospel with man-made organizations and institutions that harbor false gospels.
“Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers…. After my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also, of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them” (Acts 20:28–30).
Every moment of our lives, we are building our ministries upon either the foundation of gold, silver, and precious stones, or upon a foundation of wood, hay, and stubble. “Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is” (1 Corinthians 3:11–13). “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men” (2 Corinthians 5:10–11a). “And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.” (First John 2:28). In Romans 1:1, Paul introduces himself as “a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God.”
Charles H. Spurgeon promised his church, “That I might not stultify [invalidate] my testimony, I have cut myself clear of those who err from the faith, and even from those who associate with them. What more can I do to be honest with you?”12
Dr. Bob Jones Sr. so often cried, “Earnestly contend for the faith. Stand up and fight.”
David Beale (Enlarged 12-8-21)
David Beale taught courses on Fundamentalism and Evangelicalism for some thirty years at Bob Jones University and Seminary. He is a prolific writer and historian. Since Dr. Beale retired in 2010 he has taught and preached in schools and churches.
1) John Piper, Signs and Wonders: Then and Now.
2) Letter from a BJU leader to David Beale (2021).
4) Augustine, City of God, 6.26–27; Enchiridion: On Faith, Hope, and Love 43; cf. 93; Sermon 294; and On Forgiveness of Sins, and Baptism 1.27.
5) John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion (4.15.1—22).
6) L. Berkhof, Systematic Theology (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1939), 632–42.
7) Letters from a recent graduate to David Beale (2021); see Paul M. Elliott, Christianity and Neo-Liberalism: The Spiritual Crisis in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church and Beyond (Unicoi, TN: Trinity Foundation, 2005).
10) George Houghton, “Are Conservative Southern Baptists Fundamentalists?” Faith Pulpit, January/February 2004 at: https://faith.edu/faith-news/are-conservative-southern-baptists fundamentalists/; J. Gerald Harris, The Rise and Fall of the Conservative Resurgence: The Southern Baptist Convention: 1979-2021 (Taos, NM: Trust House, 2021); and David Beale, “SBC Today,” in Baptist History in England and America: Personalities, Positions, and Practices (Maitland, FL: Xulon Press, 2018), 581–83.
12) Charles H. Spurgeon, “No Compromise,” Sermon No. 2047, delivered on the Lord’s-Day morning, October 7, 1888.’https://indefenseofthegospel.blogspot.com/2021/12/facts-enlarged-discussion-by-dr-david.html
This is a message delivered at the 2021 Word of Truth Conference at Bethel Baptist Church in El Sobrante, CA.