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FRIDAY, JANUARY 25, 200813 years ago
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Romney Gives Christian Supporters Red Faces
AUDIO BROADCAST: Romney Gives Christian Supporters Red Faces
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

My Hot Topics don't get into party politics, even presidential politics. However, I do deal with issues that are of vital importance to believers and to the nation. Mitt Romney is a Republican contender for President. He is a Mormon and that has caused many Bible believers to be wary of his candidature. He also has a record that is not very convincing as he presents himself as a man we may trust to uphold the moral values we believe to be essential to keep the nation from self-destructing. Romney has however convinced a number of conservative, Christian leaders that he is the best man for the job of President. They believe he will hold the line on such matters as gay rights and abortion. But is he to be trusted?

During an interview with NBC's "Meet the Press," Romney expressed support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which adds "sexual orientation" to a list of federally protected classes that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin. The bill upsets conservative leaders because it grants special protection to employees based on their "actual or perceived" sexual orientation. Moreover, it would force Christian organizations that oppose homosexuality to hire homosexual employees. Such laws as ENDA treat homosexuality as a civil right and are used to push such issues as same sex "marriage," homosexual adoption and the perversion of our school systems to indoctrinate children with pro-homosexual propaganda.

It's not hard to see why Romney's support for ENDA is causing conservatives who promote traditional family values to take a long, hard look at him and to question his reliability. We don't need a president who supports the gay agenda.

Nor do we need one who is weak on abortion. Romney is a Mormon and presumably holds to the Mormon position on abortion. It may be said that the Church of the Latter Day Saints (LDS) is pro-life, but it is on the liberal side of the pro-life movement. The official stance of the LDS Church reflects its relatively liberal position. It allows abortion if the mother's life or health is threatened, if the pregnancy was the result of rape or incest or if the fetus is severely malformed and would not live long after birth.

Rape and incest are hard cases. They are terrible crimes and should be punished as such. But it makes no sense to add the crime of killing an unborn baby for someone else's crime. Protestant theology has always allowed that if the stark choice is the life of the mother or the life of the baby, the mother takes precedence. For example, if a woman needs a cancer surgery to save her life but that surgery would kill the child in her womb, she should have the surgery. But the LDS Church adds a woman's "health" and severe birth defects to the list of reasons for allowing abortion. That is dangerous. "Health" is such a broad term that pro-abortionists have long used it as their justification for killing babies. And killing babies because they have severe defects is crude. We should sympathize with mothers who have to bear such a burden but we should not add to their troubles by helping them kill their babies. Yet the LDS Church-and presumably Mitt Romney-support the right to perform such abortions. As I said at the top, I am not into party politics but I do think Christian leaders who have supported Mitt Romney will have very red faces unless they can get him to take much stronger positions than these.

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THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 200813 years ago
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Richard Roberts and Other Charismatic Financial Scandals
AUDIO BROADCAST: Richard Roberts and Other Charismatic Financial Scandals
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

Three Oral Roberts University professors have filed a lawsuit against the university because, they allege, they were fired on account of their exposing financial mismanagement. They charge that ORU misspent tax-free dollars on Richard Roberts, the President of the school. Back in October, Richard Roberts told CNN's "Larry King Live" that "it sure seems" someone is out to get him. The university's Board of Regents said it would hire an auditor to look into the accusations of misconduct and its founder, 89 year-old Oral Roberts, a pioneer of the prosperity gospel, told King that he supported an investigation: "If there is anything out of line, we will bring it into order, like we have always done."

That was in October. By the end of December, amid moves by the regents to strengthen the university's financial accountability, Roberts resigned. In October, he had done nothing that would cause him even to step aside temporarily. In December the scandal was hurting the school so much that he had to go. Christianity Today reported, "Days after Roberts's resignation, Mart Green, founder of the Hobbly Lobby and Mardel retail chains, donated $70 million to ORU, most of it dependent on reforms in the school's leadership, finances, and governance. The school had been $52 million in debt."

Isn't it amazing that Richard Roberts, if the lawsuit filed by the three professors is to be believed, could have the university install a $15,000 oven for his family, provide him the use of a private jet and spend over $50,000 on modifications to dorms his daughters would occupy while ORU was drowning in debt? But it seems par for the course for preachers of the prosperity gospel to fund their lavish lifestyles on the debt they lead other people into.

Currently Congress is investigating a number of television preachers whose lifestyle is so lavish as to be obscene. Now, Congress has no real business interfering in the theological beliefs of the prosperity gospellers, however crazy their beliefs may be. It does have every reason to examine their use of tax-free dollars. In other words, it appears that some of the super rich televangelists are not satisfied with their multi-million dollar incomes, they want to escape paying tax on all they earn and so use ministry expense accounts, on which there is no tax payable, to cover their personal expenditures.

Some big names are being investigated but after the dust settles foolish people will continue to shell out their hard earned cash to unscrupulous charlatans who will grow rich at their expense. You see, the prosperity gospel crowd has found a chord that resonates with a lot of people. All across America, people are struggling with their finances. Millions are already hopelessly in debt. So when a preacher tells them that God has revealed a foolproof plan for them to become rich, they jump at it. Many even use their credit cards to pay the televangelists, many of whom urge them to do so, getting further into debt in the process. Many of the victims are old or simple minded. Many are not; they are just looking for an easy buck. In every case the televangelists use a few Bible texts out of context and tell a few specious but spurious stories and people cough up the money. It's sad. It's sickening. It's cynically sinful. But it pays, at least for the moment. But the prosperity charlatans have their day of reckoning coming. Congress may do some of them in but whether it does or not, God will deal with them. As I think of that day, Matthew 7:21-22 comes to mind. I wouldn't take all the money in the world to risk being in that crowd.

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WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 23, 200813 years ago
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The Death Agonies of the Church of England
AUDIO BROADCAST: The Death Agonies of the Church of England
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

According to the Daily Telegraph, in England more people now attend Roman Catholic Mass each week than the services of the established church, the Church of England. The statistics show that attendance at Anglican Sunday services has dropped by 20 per cent since 2000. A survey of 37,000 churches, to be published in the new year, shows the number of people going to Sunday Mass in England last year averaged 861,000, compared with 852,000 Anglicans ­worshipping. This means that the established Church has lost its place as the nation's most popular Christian denomination after more than four centuries of unrivalled influence following the Reformation.

It's not that English people have suddenly found any great love for the Roman church. It has been in decline just as dramatically as the Anglican Church. But an influx of immigrants from eastern Europe (especially Poland and Lithuania) and Africa has bolstered attendance at Roman Catholic churches that had been dwindling to the point of near extinction.

The Methodist Church also has suffered enormous decline. Until recently Methodists formed the third largest denomination in England, after the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church. Now it has sunk to fourth place, with Pentecostalism vaulting past it in weekly attendance.

The Church of England stands in danger of becoming a permanent religious minority. Given that it is the national church, the church established by law with the Queen as its titular head, with all the constitutional implications that arrangement involves, minority status would have very serious results.

Naturally, people within the Church of England are asking questions. What has happened? Why has the Church declined so much? Can anything be done to reverse the trend and if so, what? There are various answers to such questions. In part, the decline can be attributed to the social, moral and religious climate of the nation. To put it bluntly, England is a godless and irreligious nation. It is prosperous and sold to the pursuit of the here and now. That is one reason for the decline in church attendance.  But it's not the only reason. Another is the apostasy that for generations has filled the national church and the other mainline denominations. Quite simply, people don't go to church for the churches have no message of any importance. The Church of England is a middle class social club with liberal political values and almost no discernible adherence to Biblical Christianity. Here and there exceptions prove the rule but generally it is true that the Church of England is dying because it does not deserve to live.

Can anything be done about it? That's the question Anglicans are asking but it's the wrong question. Why should anything be done to reverse the decline? I can see no spiritual value in keeping the Church of England going unless it were a radically different church. That's one thing that may be done. Get rid of the apostates, repudiate all the false gospels that have found a home in the national church and set about the preaching of the gospel of redemption in Christ. That would be a start. It would be more; it would be a revolution that would turn English society upside down.

Honesty compels me to say that the leaders of the Church of England would rather see it perish than for it to become a Bible believing, gospel preaching church-all of which tells us that what we are witnessing is the death of the church that gave us some of God's choicest servants, Reformers, missionaries, expositors of God's word. There are still a few able men in its ranks but, alas, the Church of England is in its death throes. Sad, but it's day is done. 

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TUESDAY, JANUARY 22, 200813 years ago
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Southern Baptists and Calvinism
AUDIO BROADCAST: Southern Baptists and Calvinism
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

Apparently the Southern Baptist Convention is facing a revival of a sort that many of its leaders did not anticipate, a revival of Calvinism among its up and coming ministers. Reportedly, about 10% of Southern Baptist pastors claim to be Calvinists. However, it is estimated that about 30% of its seminary graduates are Calvinists, which seems to point to an increasingly Calvinistic emphasis in the years to come. This scares many Baptists, the main fear being that Calvinism may spell the death of evangelism in the Southern Baptist Convention or at least severely weaken it.

So let's look at the issues. What is Calvinism? The discussion in SBC circles seems to center on the famous "five points of Calvinism." This is a pity for those five points do not really summarize the genius of Calvinism. They are in fact responses to five errors set forth by Arminian theologians in the 17th century. Calvinism is, in the memorable phrase of B.B. Warfield, "theism and evangelicalism come into their own."  Fundamentally, Calvinism seeks to do full justice to all that God says about Himself in Scripture. And it stands firmly on the belief that God saves sinners-He does not merely make their salvation possible, He actually saves them. Calvinism denies that in salvation God does His part and leaves man to do his part. It teaches that salvation is all of God and all of grace.

What worries many people is what is called TULIP theology-with the word being used as an acrostic so that each letter introduces a major doctrinal position: Total Depravity; Unconditional Election; Limited Atonement; Irresistible Grace; Perseverance of the Saints.

These points are interdependent. If you accept one you must accept all. They stand or fall together. Total depravity means that man is a sinner by nature and birth. It does not mean that every man is as bad in his moral behavior as he may be but rather that he is "dead in trespasses and sins" and is incapable of doing anything to merit the favor of God, anything to originate a disposition of will acceptable to God. Unconditional election says that God chooses men by free grace and not on condition of their works or even their foreseen faith. Were it otherwise, salvation would be of human works, at least in part. Irresistible grace refers only to regenerating grace. Sinners are dead in sins and the call of God is like the voice of Christ at the grave of Lazarus, effectual and irresistible. Perseverance of the saints means that when God saves sinners He remains faithful to them and maintains them in grace and faith so that they will never perish. The big sticking point for many is Limited Atonement. But Calvinists don't believe in an atonement that is limited, non-Calvinists do. Calvinists believe that when Jesus died He and His Father had a definite purpose in view and that they completely accomplished it. Calvinists believe that the Lord Jesus suffered absolutely no failure in what He set out to accomplish by His death. Thus all the sins He bore away must actually be borne away. All the debt He paid must be actually paid. If He did this for every man who ever lived, then every man who ever lived must be saved. It is no escape from this conclusion to say that they will be saved only "if they believe." Is unbelief a sin? Did Jesus pay the penalty for our unbelief? He paid for all our sins. All whose sins? All the sins of the saved. All the sins of His elect. All the sins of believers. To believe this does not limit the atonement. What limits the atonement is the notion that Jesus paid for the sins of people who end up in hell. Such an atonement would be at least partially a failure. And if some people for whom Christ made atonement finally perish, what assurance can any of us have that we will not finally be lost? Unless we believe that when He died Christ made a particular redemption for His chosen people we can never make anything He did the basis of our assurance. We will be reduced to depending on the quality of our faith or obedience. By the very nature of the case, these are imperfect and assurance demands perfection as its foundation. Christ's particular redemption or definite atonement provides such a foundation. Nothing else does.

But what of the worry that Calvinism will kill evangelism? Some professed Calvinists are evangelistically moribund. But genuine Calvinism is essentially evangelistic. Indeed, some of the greatest revivals in history have been Calvinistic in theology.

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MONDAY, JANUARY 21, 200813 years ago
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The Real Jesus
AUDIO BROADCAST: The Real Jesus
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

Just before Christmas, the editors of the Vancouver Sun had the bright idea of setting up an inter-faith dialog to discuss the real meaning of Jesus. The newspaper spoke of Jesus as "arguably" the most important figure in history and invited scholars from four traditions-Muslim, Jewish, Roman Catholic and Protestant-to talk to each other about Him.

Muslims believe that Jesus was a prophet, that he was born of the Virgin Mary and that He will come again. They deny that He is the Son of God or that He died and rose again. Thus, for all the fine words about Him, Muslims deny the fundamental truth as to who Jesus is and the equally fundamental truth about what He did by His atoning death.

Jews may speak well of Jesus as a Jewish sage or prophet but their religion adamantly rejects Him as the Messiah. Thus Jews deny that He is the Son of God, that He fulfills the prophecies of the Old Testament or that He died and rose again from the dead. They accuse His followers of misunderstanding Him and His work and creating the myth of His divinity.

Protestantism historically is the religion of the Bible. In Chillingworth's famous phrase, "The Bible, the Bible only [is] the religion of Protestants." What the Bible says is so. The Jesus of Scripture is incarnate deity, the Son of God, who came into the world by means of the virgin birth, lived a sinless life of obedience, died an atoning death as a vicarious sacrifice to save His people from their sins and bodily rose again from the dead. This same Jesus is now seated in Heaven at God's right hand as our High Priest and advocate and will return to earth in the fullness of time. This, in outline, is the Protestant view of Jesus. However, the Protestant participant in Vancouver actually held lower views of Jesus than the Muslim. United Church of Canada minister, Gary Paterson, denied every point of the story of Jesus, His deity, His virgin Birth, atoning death and bodily resurrection. He agreed with the Jewish rabbi.

The Roman Catholic Archbishop who was present insisted on the literal truth of each of the points Paterson denied. Thus there was the strange situation that a Roman Catholic was more Biblical by far than the professed Protestant. All the other participants utterly denied that salvation could be in Jesus Christ alone, the United Church of Canada minister again joining forces with the Muslim and the Jew in rejection of one of the most basic claims of the New Testament.

Though they never really got around to discussing it, the Roman Catholic could have joined the rest in their view of the value of human merit in achieving salvation. In other words, authentic Christianity went unrepresented at the Vancouver Sun's inter-faith dialog. It makes you wonder what useful purpose such events serve. They hardly serve the cause of truth but are one way that rejecters of Christ choose to throw as much doubt as possible on the claims the NT makes about Him. The Vancouver colloquy never addressed the Biblical evidence. It was mostly a session for blowing the hot air of human opinion, while all the time ignoring the compelling evidence of the Word of God. How foolish can you get?

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FRIDAY, JANUARY 18, 200813 years ago
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Update on Trial of Murders of Turkish Christians
AUDIO BROADCAST: Coverup in the Trial of Murderers of Turkish Christians
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

Some time ago we reported on the murder of some Turkish Christians. Currently the Turkish are conducting a trial of the killers but the trial seems to be as much of a whitewash aimed protecting the godfathers of the movement to persecute Christians as it is a trial of the actual perpetrators. Indeed, the prosecutors are determined to lay blame on the Christians who were killed for having "provoked" their killers by their Christian witness. Recently the Alliance of Protestant Churches in Turkey sent out an email with details of the trial to bring the Christian world up to date. Here is a digest of its statements:

As you will sadly recall, back in April 2007 we all lived through the shock and sadness of the brutal murder of three of our brothers in Christ in the city of Malatya. At the time, in the confusion and shock of the moment, various reports went out and we, as the Alliance of Protestant churches countrywide, sent out a request to wait for the official autopsy and police reports to become available in order to understand exactly what happened. Unfortunately these reports could not be obtained until recently as the state prosecutor had declared secrecy over all the evidence while the investigation was underway. With the recent commencement of the trial of the murderers the files were finally released to the lawyers and we are thus now able to give you a summary of the facts, as recorded in the official documents:
 
The Current Situation: The first court hearing was held on 23 November 2007 at the Malatya Third Criminal Court. The public prosecutor has opened the case against the five perpetrators demanding life sentences three times over for the triple murders. These five young men, aged 19-20, are in custody; a further two, not being held, are charged with aiding and abetting a terrorist organisation. Due to the planned manner in which the killings took place the 5 murderers have been charged by the public prosecutor with setting up a terror organisation.
 
The families of our murdered brothers are being represented by more than 20 lawyers. ... You may very well ask "why so many lawyers?". These people are some of the top lawyers in the country on Human Rights and Criminal Law. They are not Christians but for the first time, we as Christians have people who are standing with us voluntarily in a major way against what they see as gross injustice. They also have massive lobbying and PR impact for the believers in Turkey. We could never have gathered these people together ourselves, let alone afford them even if we had tried. Their involvement has turned out to be vitally important for the case and overall.


The investigation and accusations brought forward and the approach of the public prosecutor's office appears to show that the authorities want to wrap this case up quickly as a one-off murder case by a group of young men who were "probably provoked by those killed, through unsavoury missionary activity and insulting Islam and national values". As the perpetrators were caught literally red-handed the case cannot be allowed to go unsolved. However, as numerous editorials in the national media have commented since the trial hearing, there is obviously a cover-up effort in place since there are many issues related to the accused that have not been investigated properly which may reveal their connections with others. In conducting a vague investigation and by passing sentence promptly on the 5 hands that wielded the knives, the need to probe deeper to identify and prosecute the actual provocateurs behind them would be avoided. "Why such a cover-up?" you may ask:
 
(a)     As one daily paper defines it "Many Turks are convinced that a phenomenon called the "deep state" - a network of state agents or ex-officials, possibly with links to organized crime - periodically targets reformists and what they deem perceived enemies of the state in the name of nationalism."  (‘Today's Zaman' newspaper, 10.12.2007)
(b)    The whole event and trial is an embarrassment to the government and the image of Turkey. As churches our prayers and desires are as follows:

 (i)   To see justice carried out and due punishment imposed in order to act as a deterrent for any possible future plots.
(ii)  For the authorities to seek out and prosecute the "brains" and "hands" behind these and similar young men whose lives are being ruined by these acts of hate.
(iii) To protect the name of our murdered brothers and other Christians in this land against lies and mud-slinging done against them.
(iv) We hope the exposure and prosecution of the mentality and powers behind the murders will help to minimise irresponsible reporting and the perpetration of disinformation by the media and authorities. 

While the above reflect the outworking of justice in this tragedy, we do very much request your prayers for the church in Turkey and particularly for the dear families of our murdered brothers, who due to this ongoing trial are not able to bring closure to their deep loss.

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THURSDAY, JANUARY 17, 200813 years ago
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Eminent Scientists Debunk Global Warming
AUDIO BROADCAST: Eminent Scientists Debunk Global Warming
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

For a long time I have been using this spot to draw attention to the scam of global warming. I have said all along that there is scant scientific evidence for the alarmist claims being made by the Green lobby, what some commentators have called the environmental wackos. I have maintained that the earth-worshiping environmentalists who are touting the global warming scare to drum up political support are for the most part really extreme left-wing socialists who are trying to institute a Communistic, secularist and anti-Christian state run by big government on a worldwide scale. If you doubt that, just see what the Greens are pushing in Europe, where they have already gained significant political clout, even to the extent of participating in central government. Their strategy has been simple but brilliant: make people believe that without massive international intervention the planet will be in serious danger. Add the names of "scientists" who demonstrate a worldwide "consensus" and soon you can get people to vote for almost anything. After all anything is better than going the way of the dinosaurs!

But the whole thing is a scam and at last significant numbers of scientists are stepping forward to say so. Let me remind you of a factual presentation given in a report from U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (Minority):

Over 400 prominent scientists from more than two dozen countries recently voiced significant objections to major aspects of the so-called "consensus" on man-made global warming. These scientists, many of whom are current and former participants in the UN IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), criticized the climate claims made by the UN IPCC and former Vice President Al Gore. Though there is a range of views among the 400 experts quoted in the Senate report, many scientists from around the world have dubbed 2007 as the year man-made global warming fears "bite the dust." The Senate report lists the scientists by name, country of residence, and academic/institutional affiliation.  It also features their own words, biographies, and weblinks to their peer reviewed studies and original source materials as gathered from public statements, various news outlets, and websites in 2007. Hopefully this new report will redefine the debate. Many of the scientists featured have stated that numerous colleagues shared their views, but they will not speak out publicly for fear of retribution. Atmospheric scientist Dr. Nathan Paldor, Professor of Dynamical Meteorology and Physical Oceanography at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, author of almost 70 peer-reviewed studies, explained how many of his fellow scientists have been intimidated. "Many of my colleagues with whom I spoke share these views and report on their inability to publish their skepticism in the scientific or public media."  

This is good news. Now we need politicians to have the guts to stand up to the earth-worshipers and return the nation to something like sanity in environmental matters. In Europe that will be a tall order. In Britain, for example, all the major political parties are seeking to outdo each other in greenness and all are fanatical supporters of the global warming scam. But at least the 400 scientists are a start. This is a debate we must win.

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WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 16, 200813 years ago
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The Lure of Tradition
AUDIO BROADCAST: The Lure of Tradition
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

Forty years ago the Vatican ran an all out war of attrition against one of the Roman Catholic Church's top prelates, Archbishop LeFevre. The reason? He rejected the decision of Vatican II to replace the Latin Mass with Mass in everyday language. During that war, the Pope excommunicated clerics and laity who would not give up their Latin Mass. Now, the present Pope has allowed the reinstatement of the Latin rite and people are flocking to this return to tradition. I think of an Irish Roman catholic woman whose grasp of her own language was quite limited and whose knowledge of Biblical truth almost non-existent. She was very religious and believed a host of popish superstitions-and she was wedded to her Latin Mass. She didn't understand a word of it but she was "moved" by the mystery of it all and carried away with the "beauty" of the liturgy. It seems that there are many like her, people who know nothing about the actual truth or otherwise of what is being said, for they don't understand a word of it, but who believe that Christian worship consists in some strange feeling of mystery or aesthetic beauty.

Of course, it is all utter nonsense. The Roman Mass is a blasphemy against Christ and His once-for-all sacrifice for sin-and that is so whether it is celebrated in English or in Latin. It is an insult to Christ to term the Mass a "sacrifice for the sins of the living and the dead." Christ left His church the sacrament of the Lord's Supper as a remembrance of His sacrificial death on the cross, not as a sacrifice in which He is offered as a victim-which is what Rome teaches-to put away our sins. Now, it doesn't matter how you express Rome's teaching or in what language you state it, it is a blasphemy. The traditional Latin Mass is as abominable as any other Mass and to be lured into its blasphemy by a love of tradition is an egregious error.

According to U.S. News and World Report, many Protestant churches are succumbing to the lure of tradition. Some of the evidence the magazine cites is suspect. For example, the practice of a weekly communion service or the reciting of the Apostles' Creed is supposed to be an indication of a return to ancient church tradition. Hardly. I suppose there is no greater Protestant in the world than Ian Paisley and I know for a fact that he has held a weekly communion service throughout his long ministry. Similarly, Protestant churches ever since the Reformation have recited the Apostles' Creed. However, there are other signs that are disturbing: a move to dead liturgy; a dependence on the church "Fathers," who for the most part are hopelessly inept exegetes of Scripture.

For many the lure of mystery and beauty are leading them into practices that are subtly changing their beliefs. This is dangerous. It is the result of a growing ignorance of the true nature of Protestantism. Protestant worship follows the NT pattern. In the NT, Christian worship is severely simple. It is not aimed at stirring the carnal senses but at stirring the soul to faith in Christ, as the Pastoral Epistles clearly witness. Hence preaching is the central act of worship in Protestantism. The lure of tradition is the seduction of Satan to pull us away from the absolute authority and all-sufficiency of the written word of God. Test tradition by Scripture. Never leave what the Bible says because of tradition, however ancient.  Tradition without truth is vanity. Tradition without truth is apostasy. Truth can stand on Scripture without tradition. So don't take the devil's bait and swallow vain tradition. If it's not biblical it is not of God-and that's a rule with no exceptions.

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TUESDAY, JANUARY 15, 200813 years ago
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The Pinhead Bible
AUDIO BROADCAST: The Pinhead Bible
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

Here's an intriguing report from London's Daily Telegraph:

Israeli scientists yesterday said they had created the world's smallest Hebrew Bible, fitting the book on to a gold-coated silicon chip smaller than a pinhead. Scientists at Technion, Israel's Institute of Technology, were able to pack the 308,428 words of what Christians refer to as the Old Testament on to a 0.5mm square of silicon by etching its surface with particle beams. "The Guinness Book of World Records has a Bible 50 times bigger," said Ohad Zohar, who directed the project. He said he now wanted to take pictures of the nano-Bible and blow it up to a seven-by-seven metre poster, which will make it "possible to read the entire bible with the naked eye". The tiny Bible was developed as part of an educational drive to increase interest in nanoscience among teenagers.

This is indeed a marvel of modern technology. At the moment it  appears to be something of a toy to gain the interest of young people and bring them into the field of nanoscience. Perhaps, however, this branch of technology will one day be useful in taking the Bible where it is now banned, such as Communist or Muslim countries. Time will tell. What interested me was the notion of a pinhead Bible.

The Israeli accomplishment is a first, technologically speaking, but there have been pinhead Bibles around for a long time. I mean Bibles either that are not really Bibles at all or Bibles misused by people who may be termed what some in the secular media would call "pinheads," foolish people who cast aside the priceless treasure of the best translation of the Bible in the English language for some trivialization of God's word. Some years ago somehow I got hold of what is called a "Cottonpatch Bible," the word of God rendered into the vernacular of the South. Well, that was the claim. It was and is a disaster and I am glad to say that I don't know anybody else unfortunate enough as to have read it. There are many other alleged "translations" of Scripture that are really just pinhead Bibles.

Then of course you have the pinhead use of Scripture. You know what I mean, people who take the Bible and look for some hidden meaning-searching out some secret code-looking for some subliminal message-while all the time missing the great truths of God's revelation in Christ. I am sure you have met people who treat the Bible like a book of charms, people who pay no attention to what the Holy Spirit actually meant by what He wrote. They take the medieval Roman Catholic notion of the fourfold sense of Scripture to an extreme and like the medieval papists make the obvious grammatical sense the least important. It's time to stop reading the Bible like pinheads. It's time to study it, love it and live it.

This year we should make it our aim to read and gain a real working knowledge of God's word. If Israeli scientists can put the Bible on a pinhead, surely it's not too much to expect that by the grace and help of God we can put it in our heads!

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MONDAY, JANUARY 14, 200813 years ago
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Students Looking for “Spiritual” Answers
AUDIO BROADCAST: Students Looking for Spiritual Answers
Let the Bible Speak Radio
Dr. Alan Cairns

According to USA Today, a recent poll of some 14,000 college students conducted by a couple of retired UCLA professors has demonstrated that the nation's universities are not the bastions of secularism that we think they are. The poll finds that as they progress through college fewer and fewer students attend church services but that despite this disinterest in church they are deeply committed to finding "spiritual" answers to life's problems. The report states:

An increasing number of undergraduates express a desire to explore the meaning and purpose of life as they progress through college, it says. The findings surprised and delighted the study's authors, Alexander and Helen Astin, retired UCLA professors who are engaged in a multi-year study of how the college experience influences spiritual development. It is funded by the John Templeton Foundation. The Astins argue that higher education has been neglecting the "inner" development of students, such as their emotional maturity, self-understanding and spirituality.

All this is trumpeted as some sort of wonderful spiritual advance. In fact, it is just further evidence of the deep spiritual declension that has overrun modern America and the rest of the Western world. Here are some of the findings that thrilled the pollsters but that are really no evidence of anything but humanism dressed up in a cuddly outfit:

  • 74.3% of juniors said "helping others in difficulty" was "very important" or "essential," compared with 62.1% of freshmen.
  • 66.6% of juniors said "reducing pain and suffering in the world" was "very important" or "essential," compared with 54.6% of freshmen.
  • 54.4% of juniors said they were committed to "improving my understanding of other countries and cultures," compared with 52.0% of freshmen.
  • 63.8% of juniors said they supported "improving the human condition," compared with 53.4% of freshmen.

The outstanding feature of all this psychobabble is the absolute absence of any reference to God or to the Lord Jesus Christ. This heralded "spirituality" is nothing more than a godless, self-centered, humanistic attempt to cover up the fact that secularism produces a soul-destroying emptiness. It is also an attempt to produce a secular replacement for the social virtues of Christianity, such as kindness and care for the downtrodden. But when all is said and done, it is a failure, just another thrust of false religion or philosophy to cut men off even more from the great saving truths of God's revelation in Christ.

Years ago, John Calvin wrote that the sum of all human knowledge is the knowledge of God and of ourselves and that we will never really know ourselves apart from the knowledge of God. What we need on college campuses and all across the nation is not some vague "self-understanding" but a revival of old-time Bible Christianity-Christ preached in the power of the Holy Spirit­­-a preaching that will lead men to see themselves as God sees them and seek Him as He has revealed Himself in Christ.

That is true spirituality. Any other spirituality comes not from God but from the devil. Sadly it is this that is spreading as over our campuses and our nation.

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