So why did I start this website? Part 2
So, if you read my last post, you’ll understand why I have a bit of a problem with the lies of calvinism. It’s this false teaching which is destroying the truth in our local fundamentalist biblical churches. And, therefore we are under attack! That brings the battle right up to me, for this attack has been made upon me and my family through churches we once attended. The price we have to pay for freedom is ongoing vigilance, for if we ignore this attack, then the next attack will just demand more and more of our freedom to be permitted to believe the truth of God’s word. Already the teaching of God’s truth has been eroded; already too many local Christian acquaintances have lost significant freedom to be able to test all things, taking on instead the words of calvinist bullies simply because they say them so forcefully. Too many Christians just take it all so meekly, not willing to argue, thus falling into the trap set for them. The major problem is that most genuine Christians are too “nice” to cause a serious argument with an alleged Christian brother or sister! And will generally agree to some false teaching in order to keep the peace. Compromise is better than conflict, they say.
But Christians are to be soldiers in battle for the truth of God’s word and the gospel of Christ. If we are attacked, we must defend vigorously, for it is the freedom to believe that it is God’s word of truth, not Calvin’s lies, which is the truth that we must defend here. Christians must take up the fight by firstly testing against the Bible everything they are taught. If it doesn’t sound quite right, then check it out! (Even if it sounds right, still check it out!) Don’t ever just meekly accept something just because you are afraid of offending other Christians, for if they are teaching anything other than biblical truth, then they are either ignorant fools or not Christian at all (and therefore not worth your time listening to them!). These false calvinist teachers all recommend each other; they all belong to the same club. And, they, like Calvin, are all walking the road of heresy.
It is interesting to note that, while genuine Christians seek to evangelise the lost, calvinists all too often seek to evangelise the non-calvinist Christians. Many calvinists see non-calvinists as less-spiritual Christians, or even not saved at all. This makes non-calvinist churches a target for militant calvinists who consider that their doctrines are far superior to all others. Note what Mohler, an influential new calvinist, says about new calvinism.
Al Mohler: Where else are they going to go? If you’re a theological minded, deeply convictional young evangelical, if you’re committed to the gospel and want to see the nations rejoice in the name of Christ, if you want to see gospel built and structured committed churches, your theology is just going end up basically being Reformed, basically something like this new Calvinism, or you’re going to have to invent some label for what is basically going to be the same thing, there just are not options out there, and that’s something that frustrates some people, but when I’m asked about the New Calvinism—where else are they going to go, who else is going to answer the questions, where else are they going to find the resources they going to need and where else are they going to connect. This is a generation that understands, they want to say the same thing that Paul said, they want to stand with the apostles, they want to stand with old dead people, and they know that they are going to have to, if they are going to preach and teach the truth.
Therefore Living Springs is a mission field for the calvinist GraceWest to seek and save from their non-calvinist “heresies”! Interestingly, GraceWest’s apparent “interest” in Living Springs appears to have started long before I applied for the pastor position at Living Springs. It seems that the current pastor of Living Springs and the GraceWest pastor may have been well-acquainted before GraceWest’s apparent interest in Living Springs. (Or maybe that’s why the GraceWest pastor became better acquainted with the Living Springs pastor.) Certainly, though, GraceWest does appear to have successfully set its sights on gaining some measure of control over the doctrinal teachings at Living Springs.
But the false teaching was not only to come from GraceWest. After the current Living Springs pastor took over in 2013, there appeared to be a strong emphasis on the works of the calvinist MacArthur, especially his “Fundamentals of the Faith” which are anything but fundamental if you study it carefully. Later on, the heresies of Todd Friel were taught in their small group studies. They used “Drive by theology” by Friel and Lawson which claims to teach the Bible properly. However, Friel also teaches the calvinist heresy that you do not choose to accept Jesus into your life; instead God chooses you. He has written a document titled “Ten reasons NOT to ask Jesus into your life”, in which he says such things as “Brace yourself for this one: with very few if any exceptions, anyone who asked Jesus into their hearts to be saved…is not.“ and “People who ask Jesus into their hearts are not saved and they will perish on the Day of Judgment.“ For further reading on this issue, please go to The Heresy of Todd Friel.
But this was only the beginning of heresy, it seems, for the next year Living Springs advertised on their website that they would commence (on 5th March 2017) a series of Sunday evening studies by Gary Thomas titled “Sacred Marriage”. Now Thomas’ teachings have more to do with spiritual mysticism, yoga and tantric sex than Christian doctrine. In fact, it is difficult to isolate out any serious “Christian” teaching in his writings without contamination by satan’s lies. Thomas even quotes someone who says that a healthy look at sex can provide fruitful meditation on our need and desire for God (Thomas Hart). He also quotes many times another who writes about tantric sex and kundalini yoga (Mary Oliver). Yet another quote is from Friedrich Nietzche (an extremely anti-God person, who teaches that God is dead – nihilism). I am deeply shocked to think that a Christian church would be studying such filth and evil. In another book (Sacred Pathways) Thomas teaches centering prayer using what can only be described as using demonic mantras as a means of praying to God. He writes: It is particularly difficult to describe this type of prayer in writing, as it is best taught in person. In general, however, centering prayer works like this: Choose a word (Jesus or Father, for example) as a focus for contemplative prayer. Repeat the word silently in your mind for a set amount of time (say, twenty minutes) until your heart seems to be repeating the word by itself, just as naturally and involuntarily as breathing.
For further information, please read Gary Thomas – new age teacher.
It is clear that all who are involved with the leadership at Living Springs are going to have serious problems when they stand before God in the judgment, concerning their offence to those in the flock that they are supposed to be caring for.
Matthew 18:6-7 – 6 But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and [that] he were drowned in the depth of the sea. 7Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!
False shepherds of the flock will be punished severely for their abuse of their authority over God’s children, and Living Springs (with GraceWest’s approval and support) has demonstrated a serious lack of proper pastoral care for its flock. False shepherds are wolves among the sheep! And wolves now control the sheep-fold known as Living Springs!
But, not to be outdone by such heresy of Living Springs, it seems that Open Door church also tried the pathway of false teaching when it allegedly used studies by Paul Tripp more than 2 years ago. Paul Tripp has been heavily involved with the development of the Biblical Counselling program as developed by CCEF through Westminster theological seminary in USA. (Westminster itself has probably had more to do with the development of new or neo calvinism than anything else, and Biblical Counselling is new calvinism’s main tool for putting its doctrines in place in churches.)
For further information on new calvinism or Biblical Counselling, please go to Biblical Counselling & new calvinism today or The gospel of new calvinism
or posts The new calvinism gospel or Biblical Counselling as an aid to control the church or New calvinism is Biblical Counselling or The Seventh Day Adventist connection to new calvinism
Paul Tripp’s doctrine is based upon an understanding that all Christians have a sickness that they need help with. “There is a plague that has infected the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ. It’s a sad disease, it’s left us weakened, and broken and discouraged, and afraid. It’s almost no sooner than you come to faith in Jesus Christ than you get infected. ….. What is it you ask? It’s identity amnesia. We have forgotten who we are. And in forgetting who we are we frantically look for identity in thousands of places where it will never be found, places where you were never meant to look for identity. You probably do it so instinctively; you probably do it so frequently, you probably do it so naturally, you don’t actually know you are doing it. You’re so used to carrying the burden that you don’t know you are carrying the burden anymore. Your spiritual back has hurt you so long you’ve forgotten you’re in pain.“(http://www.bibleleaguetrust.org/beware-of-paul-tripp/)
Put simply, Tripp tries to convince all Christians (if possible) that they have a problem that can only be alleviated by special counselling (which then leads into Biblical Counselling). That is, if you desire a change, you introduce the problem that will make people desire the change. It’s called the Hegelian dialectic: introduce the problem that pushes people toward your preferred solution.
Tripp also calls the characteristics of the Lord as dangerous theology that has infected the church. He (Tripp) claims that the identity you assign to yourself dictates the course of your life. “You never escape the identity that you assign to yourself, ever.” And so come Tripp’s big questions: “Who do you think you are? Where will you look today, for identity?” Referring to the first five verses of Psalm 27, Tripp describes the characteristics of the Lord — the Lord is light; the Lord is salvation; the Lord is stronghold. Then he says, “What I’ve just given you is nasty, dangerous, bad theology — but it’s the theology, I’m convinced, that has infected the Church of Jesus Christ.” (http://www.bibleleaguetrust.org/beware-of-paul-tripp/)
So, I went to his website to see what his gospel was. I could find nothing that could (even with “the imagination of an over-sensitive nature” to quote what a certain pastor said to me) be called a gospel of sorts, other than Christians having the victory in Christ. But victory over what – he doesn’t really specify! I listened through an Easter message on his site; I thought I would have to get some gospel here! But, no, nothing at all, except a mention of sin at the very beginning which had no apparent connection with the rest of the message. He focuses upon the self-worth of Christians, and would probably be in full agreement with such as Rick Warren who teaches that we should never be negative about our witnessing; we should never say something that could make people feel bad.
Tripp also believes in what can only be described as mystical meditation.
Tripp is a wishy-washy speaker who says a lot without saying anything at all. He might sound good to anyone who wants to be spoon-fed like a baby. However, my recommendation for Christians is to leave him well alone, for then and only then perhaps you might actually start growing as a Christian. His teachings are like poison and his philosophy is straight from the depths of hell. Truly he teaches a doctrine of demons. For further information, please read Paul Tripp – heretic or tare?
And now Open Door has Biblical Counselling advertised on its website. If it is affiliated with Biblical Counselling Australia, then it is likely to be used as a tool for establishing and reinforcing new calvinist doctrines among the church members.
I used to be unconcerned about calvinism apart from a refusal to believe in it, especially its doctrines of limited atonement and unconditional election. But, as I explained in my last post, after researching calvinism in recent years, I have learned that it is a dangerous and insidious heresy that takes over the thinking of Christians, rendering them more like brainwashed cult-members than rationally thinking people. A good friend of ours used to preach at our country church years ago. He was clearly calvinist, yet we thought at the time that his biblical teaching was sound. However, when he was recently challenged concerning how his calvinist views conflicted with the Bible, instead of lovingly “correcting” us (as a reasonable Christian would be expected to do), he merely said that he should have no more to discuss with us on that matter. We haven’t heard back from him since.
I am a logical and practical person, with a desire to serve God wherever He should call. That has led us to leave our little farm in the country years ago and go to other places in Australia, including working with aboriginal people in Alice Springs in central Australia. I’ll look at this aspect of my life next time.