Worldview WeekendBrannon Howse
Would you approve or disapprove if some of America's evangelical pastors and religious leaders announced they were going to show up at "Oprah's Divine Destiny" meeting at the Kennedy Center for an evening that would include uplifting music and nationally-known religious figures from all faiths as they unite in prayer and recite historical speeches? Would it concern you if you knew that on her radio program Oprah has taught the book called A Course in Miracles written by Helen Schucman? This book and the workbook include such quotes as:
"A slain Christ has no meaning." "The recognition of God is the recognition of yourself." "Do not make the pathetic error of 'clinging to the old rugged cross'." "My salvation comes from me."
True Bible-believing Christians would not approve of evangelical pastors and leaders uniting with Oprah in a self-described, religious and spiritual meeting. Why? Because most Biblically thinking Christians do not agree with Oprah's liberal politics and they know that the truth of God's Word and Oprah's pagan spirituality do not mix.
However, many of these same Christians will have no problem when some of America's evangelical pastors join radio personality and television host Glenn Beck for a spiritual program, because unlike Oprah, they share Beck's conservative, political views. To many it makes no matter that Beck is a self-described Mormon because his political views trump his religious views and for this reason many will justify taking part in "Glenn Becks Divine Destiny" program at the Kennedy Center on August 27th.
The Apostle Paul warns Christians against uniting with unbelievers in spiritual endeavors in 2 Corinthians 6:14 where we read, "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?" In verse 16 Paul declares that Christians must be spiritually separate from non-believers. Remember Paul is talking about being spiritually separate. "Glenn Beck's Divine Destiny" program at the Kennedy Center on Friday evening August 27, 2010 has been specifically described by organizers as "a unique spiritual event."
While I applaud and agree with many of Glenn Beck's conservative and constitutional views, that does not give me or any other Bible-believing Christian justification to compromise Biblical truth by spiritually joining Beck in an event, that according this his own website, will include an evening in which "nationally-known religious figures from all faiths will uniteâ€¦". The website continues "The audience for the event will be overwhelmingly made up of pastors, ministers and clergy..." The event is also described as an evening "that will help heal your soul." This event is clearly a spiritual event with Glenn declaring on a video on his website that the hymn Eternal Father Strong to Save "is the message of 8/27". The problem is that as a Mormon, Glenn's definition of God the Father is not the same as that described by Jesus Christ Himself in the Bible. Glenn says, "I have been reaching out to the biggest names in faith for the last yearâ€¦I have met with the biggest leaders of faith in the country privately and I have asked them to help me put differences aside and to reach out with one another so we can remind people to get down on their knees for our brethren's shield in our dangerous hour."
Christians that want to be committed to Biblical truth cannot "put aside" the cross and Gospel of Jesus Christ nor the supremacy of Scripture by spiritually uniting with those that proclaim another Jesus, another gospel and declare the cross foolishness.
Many American Christians will allow their commitment to reclaiming the country, reclaiming Congress, lowering taxes, and defeating the progressives trump their commitment to the Biblical mandate declared in 2 Corinthians 6 as well as the mandate of 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 which commands Christians to expose every high and lofty thing lifted up against the principles of the Lord.
American Christians should not and cannot rate our success on whether or not we return our country and culture to its Christian roots. Our success or failure must be based on whether or not we have been faithful servants of the one and only true God and have earnestly contended for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3).
We appreciate the strong and courageous stands that Glenn has taken but Christians must understand that Glenn is now, by his own choice, promoting something that is not compatible with Biblical Christian doctrines. While Christians can join Glenn in opposing tyranny, socialism, cultural Marxism, and the like; we cannot join him spiritually. We can be co-belligerents on many moral issues with non-Christians but we cannot find common ground theologically, doctrinally, and spiritually. This is not according to me, Brannon Howse, but according to the Word of God. Christians must understand that the Jesus of the cults is not the Jesus of the Bible.
Please remember that I started the website www.keepglennbeck.com to support Glenn when the radicals wanted his advertisers to stop advertising in his program because at the time he was not promoting spirituality but simply providing excellent information about what was happening in the arena of civil government and law. However, Glenn has now moved into an area where we must draw a clear line theologically, doctrinally and spiritually.
I have yet to see anything that would cause me to have a problem with the 8-28 event at the Lincoln Memorial because I have not seen that event described as a "spiritual event" or a "uniting of all faiths" for the purpose of "healing your soul." If that is what it becomes then I will be equally opposed to the 8-28 event. My concern is really focused on the 8/27 event for the reasons I have articulated.
Some misinformed Christians have e-mailed me Mark 9:38-41 to try and convince me that partnering with Glenn Beck for a "unique spiritual event" is acceptable Biblically even if Glenn Beck is not a Christian, but indeed a Mormon by his own admission. Verse 40 says "For he who is not against us is on our side." There is just one big problem; the people emailing me this verse are taking this scripture completely out of context. Mark 9 is not speaking of a non-Christian that is doing something good but it is clearly speaking of a true follower of Jesus Christ that was successful in casting out a demon.
If you do not think it is Biblically acceptable for a Biblically committed Christian to be united in a spiritual event with Oprah Winfrey then why is it not also unacceptable to unite spiritually in the 8/27 event with Glenn Beck or any other religious leaders that do not adhere to Biblical orthodoxy? How much different are the religious beliefs of Oprah and the beliefs of Mormons? Christian author Ed Decker who was a Mormon for 20 years of his adult life and was a member of the Melchizedek priesthood, a Temple Mormon and active in many church positions before becoming a Christian has revealed to me such facts as:
Â· Mormons believe the cross of Christ is foolishness and thus you will not find a cross in or on top of a Mormon temple. Thus a Mormon could say "Do not make the pathetic error of 'clinging to the old rugged cross'."
Â· Mormons believe the blood Jesus Christ shed on the cross is not what saves and thus Mormons will not use red wine or red juice for communion but they use water. Thus a Mormon could say "A slain Christ has no meaning."
Â· Mormons believe that salvation is not found in placing your faith and trust in Jesus Christ alone but in good works. Thus a Mormon could say "My salvation comes from me."
Â· Mormons believe that God is one of many Gods and that every good Mormon man can become a God himself. This belief is called the law of eternal progression and is best described in this popular Mormon saying, "As man is, God once was, and as God is, man may become." Thus a Mormon could say that "The recognition of God is the recognition of yourself."
Do these pastors and Christian leaders not understand that by appearing on stage at this "unique spiritual event" they are sending the message that Biblical Christianity and Mormonism (and any other unbiblical worldview represented) can indeed find spiritual common ground? This is not only a public relations victory for Mormonism but also for universalism.
According to the LDS General Authority and President of the Council of the Twelve, Ezra Taft Benson, the LDS doctrine is that the living prophet is above the scripture. I would humbly plead with those Christians taking part in this spiritual event to not put their own personal desires and agenda above the scripture.
Christians e-mail me to tell me that Glenn Beck uses Christian terms and thus he must be a Christian. Indeed Mormons, as well as New Agers, use many of the same terms that Bible believing Christians use but their definitions of those terms are in direct opposition to the Biblical definitions.
Christians also e-mail me to tell me that they heard Glenn Beck give the gospel on his television program one night. I watched that program and Glenn clearly stated that he had called Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention to have Land explain to Glenn the gospel message according to evangelicals so Glenn could contrast it with the collective salvation of President Obama. Glenn provided this contrast; he did not state that he had rejected Mormonism for the truth of the Biblical gospel.
It is not Biblically acceptable for Christians to join Oprah for "a unique spiritual event" and it is equally not Biblical for Christians to join Glenn Beck for "a unique spiritual event." I do however urge all Christians to pray for Oprah and Glenn that they may indeed come to know the Jesus Christ of the Bible as their personal Lord and Savior. (John 14:6)
Millions of Christian families are watching to see who will have the Biblical discernment and courage to be obedient to God and His Word in which He has clearly revealed His will for us concerning this matter. My heart grieves for the teenagers, college students, and spiritually immature Christians that will be confused and even led astray by this co-mingling of spiritual worldviews.
Do not be shocked, pastors and Christian leaders, when your personal appearance and endorsement of this spiritually pluralistic event increase the already rising numbers of young people leaving evangelical churches to join the Mormon Church. Neither be surprised, my friends, when discerning Christians are leery of your future work because of your betrayal of clear Biblical instruction on this very issue. I want your testimony and credibility preserved and beg you to graciously cancel your participation in this "spiritual event".
I have received numerous e-mails from former Mormons who understand the seriousness of this issue. Here is one such e-mail:
I was a tenured professor at Brigham Young University from 1999-2008, a dug-in Mormon for 30 years. Christ drew me and I went face down in surrender to the Biblical Christ, now a strong Christian. As former Mormon leaders, my husband and I have been speaking to Christians about Glenn Beck for some time and are shocked at the resistance we hear from Christians who don't seem to understand the gravity of this false and slippery "christ" of Mormonism.
The late Vance Havner was correct when he declared:
The devil is not fighting religion; he is too smart for that. He is producing a counterfeit Christianity so much like the real one that good Christians are afraid to speak out against it.
As long ago as 1898, Abraham Kuyper warned in the Stone Lectures at Princeton:
Do not forget that the fundamental contrast has always been, is still and always will be until the end; Christianity and Paganism, the idols and the living God.
I pray that America's Christians and pastors will understand that there is an unbiblical and dangerous spiritual convergence taking place throughout the nation and the world and today is the day to choose whether you will uncompromisingly stand for the living God or give creditability to pagan spirituality.
In I Kings 18:20-21 Elijah declared to the Children of Israel, who were seeking to follow God while also mixing their worship of God with pagan spirituality, that they must choose to whom they would pledge their allegiance. Elijah asked the Israelites "How long will you falter between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him."
Yes, I would like to see the progressives defeated and the original intent of America's Founding Fathers restored, but that certainly will not happen if the true Bride of Christ compromises on Biblical truth. This is no time to be committed to pragmatism because the end does not justify the means. The means simply declares our priorities and Whom we really serve.
 Ed Decker, Article, The Massive Mormon Scriptures Mess, p. 11 saintsalive.com
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