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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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  • « Free Online Study Bible Resource | Main | Mormonism v. Biblical Christianity »

    Ever seen something like this?

    Have you ever seen something like this in the Bible - God saying, "Go meet with the Baal worshippers' and arrange a huge rally, an ecumenical inter-faith service - talk about honor and integrity and family values.. and you can pray to Me, of course, and they can pray to Baal - in fact, hold the priest of Baal's hand as he prays.. that will be such a nice touch.. and its quite ok with me.. I, the Lord your God, the holy One, really don't mind.. that's because it will show so much love to people and it will open hearts to My religion and everyone will so appreciate you not being closed minded elitist bigots. It will do wonders for people's view both of you and of Me. Go do this in My Name."?

    Ever seen that? Even a hint of it? No? Me neither. - JS

    Posted by John Samson on August 31, 2010 06:58 PM

    Comments

    Not in the bible...but it sorta sounds of a glen beck meeting.

    Great post.

    I hope people will listen.

    I propose we call this new movement "Beckumenism". Definition- The right wing mirror image of old left wing ecumenism, in which the shared morals are inverted but the Christ-denying heresies are the same.

    I bet if you lived in Biblical times, you really would have told off God for using that Rahab whore of an unbeliever. How dare God use unbelievers.

    I sure am glad you know best.

    Mntx,

    Not at all - I rejoice that Rahab was used in a mighty way as she faithfully served the one true God of Israel.

    As a resident of Jerico, she was most likely a worshiper of Baal when she helped the Israelites. She would not have had prior exposure to their faith as this is the first time into that land in all the generations after Abraham.

    God used a Baal worshiping whore (for lack of a better term) to help the Israelites. They did not complain she didn't worship the wrong God, they instead, had faith in her and God's plan.

    If now, God's plan is to use a Mormon like he used a worshiper of Baal then, maybe you should have a little more faith in His plan?

    Glen Beck had 240 Pastors, Rabbis, and Church leaders from probably every faith in America today. He constantly says to choose the Church that fits what you believe.

    If I couldn't work with anyone with a different belief then I have I wouldn't be able to work with most Christians because they celebrate Easter which was started 2000 years before Jesus was born to honor the goddess Estarte.

    I certainly do not know Glenn Beck's heart - that is God's business, not mine, but until he renounces Mormonism, it is clear that he believes and prays to the god of Mormonism and this is not the God of the Bible.

    I can work with anybody too - I just cannot in all conscience say an "Amen" at the end of a prayer to a false god asking for America to turn to it. I do not wish for even one person to be drawn to this false god.

    Throughout history God has used unbelievers of all kinds in all sorts of situations. He used Pharaoh and Nebuchadnezzar but that does not legitimize the false gods of Egypt or Babylon. He never once told Israel to "respect" those gods.

    Neither does He call us to stand shoulder to shoulder with those who worship false gods today for the sake of some earthly purpose.

    Throughout history God has used pagan men and their empires to demonstrate His glory. Also, He has been about calling, justifying and sanctifying His covenant people. Today that covenant people is the Church NOT America.

    I do not presume to speak on God's behalf but I suspect God is not at all concerned about the restoration of America for the sake of America's glory. My guess is that He is still about the business of calling His people to Himself — for His own glory.

    John S,

    I'm not sure that everyone at my Presbyterian church worships the true God.

    Did you ever watch the Beck piece on James? Will you comment? Please?

    Also, I don't think we're talking about America's glory, Chip. But even if we were, I don't think patriotism is forbidden by God. At all. The problem with being an American is that we are self-ruled. I realize that Rome was a Republic, so perhaps Paul had some sort of concept of self-governance (I don't know). But Romans 13 clearly says that it's perfectly fine to show honor to one's country.

    In our country, our honor is only as good as its citizens. Beck was being extremely Tocquevillean.

    I didn't consider this to be a worship service at all. I considered it to be an event where Americans wanted to show loyalty to their country. Some were praying. I am so glad that we can pray anywhere in America. I am grateful for our freedom. I am grateful for the liberty to homeschool my children, for example.

    I would like to ask John S. if he thinks common grace is a reality. If it is, then I do think that nonbelievers or Mormons might recognize those things that help keep the peace.

    And just as a last note, I have a number of Catholics in my homeschool group. We are a protestant group, so we wonder why they mind being around us. We pray together. I stand with them. I can't really see any other way to exist right now. I cannot judge their hearts, and wonder if they're praying to a different God. I think they don't really, truly understand the difference between us. I think it's quite possible that Glenn Beck doesn't quite get it, either. I know that Mormons are misled. I don't like Mormonism. I don't like ecumenicism. But Beck wasn't leading a church - he was in essence leading a patriotic rally.

    I have had people judge me because I'm a Presbyterian. They think I'm a liberal person who doesn't believe in scripture, because they've never heard of the PCA. My mother is extremely angry with me because I don't believe in the pre-millennial rapture. And on and on.

    you need to remember that it is not our job to condemn other people to hell, (which you have down) but we are to use discernment. We must be able to recognize evil when we see it. Remember the devil himself often appears as "an angle of light"

    As far as the common grace, of course non-believers can see problems. After all, they all breath the air that was created by the God that they either deny or do not know of.

    Glenn Beck's misunderstanding of his own faith does not save him. Ignorance is not bliss. If we break God's law, we break it whether we know or not. If this was not the case, people that steal would not be responsible for their sin if they did not know that was in God's law. As Paul says in Romans 7:7, "What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I knew not sin but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not lust."

    In other words, even though he was lusting, which is a sin, He is still lusting, but now he knows it, and knows where the problem.

    Lastly, we as Christians need to have our priorities straight. Our main goal, while it is very important to be patriotic, and to be for our government which God has placed us in, is for the Gospel to flourish. Is it vitally important whether America stands or falls? No. America has only been a blip in the screen of 6000 years of human history. God is bigger than America. Not to say, however that America is unimportant, only that God doesn't need America.

    And so I save America. But if in saving America we need to go to a false gospel (even ignorantly without knowing it) then let America fall. Christians, God is bigger. His plans are bigger than America. And so I say, save America, but protect the Gospel.

    Just to drive the point home that I am not patriotic, I agree with John Samson, that most of what comes out of Glenn Beck's mouth is true. We should be praying for these things, but we need to make sure that we are addressing the Triune God of scripture, Maker of Heaven and earth, the father of Christ, and the God of one gospel. Any other God is a false God. So Amen to Beck, but keep wary that he follows another God, and will lead the nation astray if we do not follow it.

    One last thing. Anyone who thinks that all these people standing with Beck as he leads them in prayer think that they can pray to their own God are (I apologize, but I sincerely believe this) misinformed.

    I think that the picture that Mr. Samson gives us hits it on the head. Not to mention the message of tolerance that is completely unbiblical and makes God angry. It makes him angry to see many people come together as in the days of the Romans, worshipping many different Gods, when God is only pleased by an undivided attention to Him. He is holy. we should not associate and pray with, even if the prayer is good, it is like smoke to the eyes of God to pray to someone other than Him.

    oh yeah, and just so there is no confusion, I meant that you agree that we are not to damn people to hell. (from the first Paragraph of the first post) I know it may have looked a little unclear

    This is interesting:

    http://chicagoboyz.net/archives/15295.html

    "I Think I See What Glenn Beck is Doing"

    Elements of warfare

    Boyd divided warfare into three distinct elements:

    * Moral Warfare: the destruction of the enemy's will to win, via alienation from allies (or potential allies) and internal fragmentation. Ideally resulting in the "dissolution of the moral bonds that permit an organic whole [organization] to exist." (i.e., breaking down the mutual trust and common outlook mentioned in the paragraph above.)

    * Mental Warfare: the distortion of the enemy's perception of reality through disinformation, ambiguous posturing, and/or severing of the communication/information infrastructure.

    * Physical Warfare: the destruction of the enemy's physical resources such as weapons, people, and logistical assets.

    Oops, I also wanted to drive the point home that I was *not* patriotic. remove the not. sorry.

    Jane,

    We are talking about whether or not Christians should join with non-believers in prayers to their false gods and the context of this discussion is the recent Glenn Beck “Restoring Honor” rally. That rally was ALL about America’s glory.

    Now, if the rally had only been about principles of limited government and individual liberty I would have no problem at all joining Mr. Beck. But it wasn’t. It had serious spiritual overtones that should not be ignored.

    On August 26 Beck told his radio audience concerning the rally, “You’re going to see the spirit of God unleashed unlike you have probably ever seen it before, at least at a public function. You are going to see the power of God.” Really? Glenn Beck presumes to predict what the Holy Spirit is going to do?

    The evening preceding the rally Beck held an event at the Kennedy Center called “America’s Divine Destiny” which, according to the promotions on his website, will “help heal your soul.” I do not think this is merely a matter of semantics or a figure of speech — and if it’s not, then how does such a statement mesh with Scripture?

    John has already pointed out that a “pastor” opened the rally with a prayer to “the gods.” I just don’t understand how a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ would even want to defend such a thing.

    I realize there is no biblical prohibition against patriotism, but there are numerous and serious prohibitions and warnings against idolatry. What Americans today call “patriotism” has, in many cases, crossed into idolatry.

    Our culture (with the full cooperation of Christians) venerates soldiers into a special class — as if the mission of the United States and the mission of God were identical. We revere national monuments as “sacred ground” i.e. “holy” when Scripture teaches that God alone is holy. Consider the inscription at the Lincoln Memorial (where Beck’s rally was held): “In this temple, as in the hearts of the people for whom he saved the Union, the memory of Abraham Lincoln is enshrined forever.”

    A temple is a structure reserved for religious or spiritual activities. This memorial enshrines a mere man into something akin to a god — and Lincoln is treated accordingly.

    Scripture is constantly taken out of context to support nationalistic ends. This synthesis of Christianity with American nationalism has created a civil religion that is just as prominent as the civil religions of ancient Greece and Rome.

    Just consider the examples from the rally. Consider that this whole rally was about America’s honor — not God’s. When they prayed they prayed for the “gods” to bring honor back to America. Their concern was America’s glory. I see two things wrong with this:

    1. Scripture teaches us to pray for God’s Kingdom to come and His will to be done. But the prayers at the rally were for God to glorify the earthly kingdom of our choice because we’ve already determined it to be worthy of his blessing.

    2. By joining in prayer with those who pray to false gods we provide them an implied acceptance of their deity or, at the very least, appear to accept the premise of religious pluralism.

    All of this is germane to the conversation we are having because it is the justification used to excuse joining in prayer with those who hold to false gods. It’s alright to pray with them in this case because, after all, we are praying for America.

    When Josiah found the book of the law and discovered just how far from God they’d drifted he had the priests take all the false gods out of the Temple. There were a bunch of them in there — even Baal. It makes you wonder how they ever arrived at that point.

    It all started with just one, little compromise.

    Praying with people who are praying to false gods is not a compromise I’m willing to make.

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