Urgent Seminar: Trojan Horses and Spiritual Deception

In keeping with the series of articles I have written about our ‘Trojan Horse in the Church’ seminar, I felt compelled to write about the topic of spiritual deception. In fact, our seminar is subtitled ‘addressing spiritual deception’. This really needs some explanation.

We must understand the nature of spiritual deception, because it is of a different ilk than other types of deception. For example, if I deceive you into buying my car which won’t start every time, won’t shift from 3rd to 4th, and burns a quart of oil every 100 miles, you will, in time, come to realize what I did to you. I withheld critical information from you. I lied to you outright about questions you did ask. In short, I hoodwinked you.

Had I given you full and complete disclosure, you probably would have been dissuaded from buying. However, there’s still hope to make things right. Now that you’re driving the car, the truth is emerging. You’re beginning to realize that I misrepresented the car and deceived you. Soon you’ll be calling me into account or you’ll be calling your lawyer to force me into just compensation. The truth is surfacing.

Now, with spiritual deception, it’s a bit different. The truth cannot be apprehended that easily. In fact, it requires the grace of God to extract you out of the lie. For example, I may sell you on the idea that the earth is a spiritual being, or that you can commune with the divine by looking within your own heart, or that Jesus is merely a great teacher, or that there’s many paths that lead to God. And you may buy it. In fact, you are predisposed to believe it because it panders to your pride. It feeds your own sense of self-reliance. Once you have bought it, though, and you live it and experience the results, there’s no way out of the maze. None whatsoever. You fall deeper and deeper into the abyss of my deceit to the point where you begin to teach others the same lies. You have no ability — within yourself — to extricate yourself from this trap. All the corrective information delivered to you with the greatest persuasive arguments will not rescue you.

When Peter declared to Jesus that “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”, what did Jesus say in reply? “Good job, Peter! Your powers of deduction have served you well!” No, that’s not at all what he said! Rather, He said, “…this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in Heaven.”

Cults, false religions, world religious systems, and false expressions of Christianity all have very bright and capable scholars. There’s no lack of intellect or scholarship. What there is, though, is a severe lack of humility to seek from God that which only God can supply — illumination to the Truth. Without that, they will never come out of darkness into the light. One hundred years of study by the most capable scholar will get him nowhere with God. Unless God provides what he cannot provide for himself, he will remain in his abyss of lies.

Thus, this is the difference between deception in the natural realm and deception in the spiritual realm. One can be exposed by natural means; the other requires two things. First, it requires men to forcefully and cogently to declare the lie for what it is, and contrast it with the Truth about God. This is where our seminar comes in. We intend to do just that. But this alone will not persuade you of the truth. Just like Peter, you will need the Lord of heaven and earth to reveal these things. This we call the Grace of God.

Our seminar is designed to expose spiritual deception that is present in the Church today. We intend to do what we can to bring these issues to light. We may be able to persuade, but we cannot convince. Convincing you of the truth is the ministry of the Spirit of God.

So, we urge you to sign up and hear what we have to say. But more than that, we urge you to prayerfully ask our Lord to provide illumination.

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Urgent Seminar: This Conspiracy is More Than a Theory

History is replete with conspiracies. Perpetrating an evil act in secret agreement with others is part of human depravity. To think otherwise is naive at best.

Dr. Peter Jones (who will be speaking at our seminar!) has written a book entitled Stolen Identity: The Conspiracy to Reinvent Jesus. This is the most evil conspiracy in all of history. That’s why I am am so passionate about our upcoming seminar. We must face this conspiracy head-on if we have any hope for Christianity to survive.

Of course, from a divine perspective, Christianity will survive just as long as the good Lord determines. But I am speaking from a human perspective, and I can say with assurance that true Christianity is in deep, deep trouble. It is rapidly being replaced by a counterfeit Christianity — one that looks OK, seems to be genuine, appears to honor Christ. But it is not. It’s as phony as a three dollar bill.

Gresham Machen: "Only two views of Jesus and the World"

In his book, Dr. Jones quotes the great American theologian Gresham Machen. Machen was the Princeton Seminary warrior who fought liberalism in the 1920’s and ’30’s. He could smell the rat, and was in no mood to befriend it. He knew that men’s souls were at stake and he was having none of it. I thank God for Machen — he defined the battle lines and gave the saints courage to stand their ground. Of course, there were the defectors too, who maligned him viciously and ultimately defrocked him from the Presbyterian Church. So it was with these traitors — they did everything in their power to silence the messenger. But God’s message cannot be silenced, and everyone will give an account.

The quote is this: “There are two generically different views about Jesus, and they are rooted in two generically different views about God and the world.”

Wow. Let’s stop right here. This need to be absorbed. Can Machen be right about this? Only two views of Jesus? Only two views about the world? Not dozens, not hundreds? Just two?? What did he mean by this? The implications are enormous. If one is true and one is false, then this smacks of a conspiracy. This demands some explanation!

I will have to leave you on the cliff at this point. I have no alternative because the explanation deserves more space and more expertise than I have to give. This is why our seminar, ‘The Trojan Horse in the Church’ is so critical. We have assembled the men who will speak on these issues and can provide the explanations. Christians, I beg you — please come. This opportunity may not come around again. As Jesus said, “Night is coming when no man can work.”

In advance, I suggest you read Dr. Jones’ book. We’re privileged to have him speak at our seminar, and so you’ll get to meet him. A little preparation will enrich your experience.

I cannot stress this enough. There must be clarity on who this ‘Jesus’ is we worship. It’s not a minor issue — in fact, it’s an issue of life and death.

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Against Heresies: The Spirit of Irenaeus

In our present-day battle with Gnosticism and in view of our upcoming seminar, I think it’s worthwhile to reflect on our predecessor in this long war, Irenaeus.

Consider the Gnostic’s notion that they possess some secret knowledge conveyed to them by oral tradition, originating with Christ Himself. Even today’s Gnostics labor to find an historical continuity to their beliefs. So, if this were true, Irenaeus would surely be a Gnostic. For it was he who learned from Polycarp, who learned from the Apostle John, who, as we all know, learned from Christ. Surely, John would have whispered this knowledge into the ear of Polycarp. And Polycarp, you would think, would have whispered the same into the ear of Irenaeus. If this is the way it happened, Gnosticism has solid footing.

Yet, we know that Christ made a point of teaching everything in full view of the public eye, not withholding anything from anyone. He told Annas the high priest, “I have spoken openly to the world. I always taught in synagogues or at the temple, where all the Jews come together. I said nothing in secret.”

Ok, so Jesus says He taught nothing in secret, but I guess that’s not quite true. The Gnostics say he did. So, who did Jesus tell these secrets too? You’d think he would have told John, the apostle ‘whom Jesus loved’. And John would have told Polycarp, and Polycarp, Irenaeus. Yes, definitely. Irenaeus would be the one to establish Gnosticism. He’s got the right connections. So, what did Irenaeus have to say about all this? Let’s take a look.

Fortunately, we have Irenaeus’ complete five-volume work to take a look at. It’s called ‘Against Heresies’ which scholars believe was written around 180 A.D. So, what heresies was Irenaeus concerned about? Was it that the idea that Jesus is the eternal Son of God, that He became a man, that He really died on the Cross and resurrected from the dead? Surely, these must be the heresies that Irenaeus would be speaking about. After all, these are the things that Gnostics detest, and Irenaeus would detest them too. Right?

But wait. Upon closer examination, the book’s name, ‘Against Heresies’ is the common name for it. Actually, Irenaeus named it, ‘On the Detection and Overthrow of the So-Called Gnosis.’ Wow, that doesn’t sound too good for the Gnostics. Perhaps Irenaeus wasn’t a Gnostic after all. Perhaps he was Gnosticism’s greatest enemy. Hmmm….

He begins the first volume by stating, “I have felt constrained, my dear friend, to compose the following treatise in order to expose and counteract their [Gnostics] machinations.” This, then, is the beginning of his vicious attack on the Gnostics, not mincing words.  Here’s a few excerpts:

“These men falsify the oracles of God, and prove themselves evil interpreters of the good word of revelation.”

“By means of specious and plausible words, they cunningly allure the simple-minded to inquire into their system; but they nevertheless clumsily destroy them, while they initiate them into their blasphemous and impious opinions.”

“But it [Gnosticism] is craftily decked out in an attractive dress, so as, by its outward form, to make it appear to the inexperienced (ridiculous as the expression may seem) more true than the truth itself.”

“Their language resembles ours, while their sentiments are very different.”

“I exhort everyone who will listen to avoid such an abyss of madness and of blasphemy against Christ.”

“I shall also endeavor, according to my moderate ability, to furnish the means of overthrowing them, by showing how absurd and inconsistent with the truth are their statements”

“Such, then, is their system, which neither the prophets announced, nor the Lord taught, nor the apostles delivered, but of which they boast that beyond all others they have a perfect knowledge.”

In addition to these statements, Irenaeus goes on to name names. His readers are not left wondering who he is talking about. Of particular concern was Valentinus.

“I refer especially to the disciples of Ptolemaeus, whose school may be described as a bud from that of Valentinus.”

Furthermore, Irenaeus goes on to attack Cerinthus, the Ebionites, Nicolaitanes, Carpocrates, Saturninus, Basilides, Simon Magus, Menander, Marcosians, Ptolemy, Colorbasus, and especially Valentinus.

So, this was the spirit of the man Irenaeus. He had a huge impact on the Church which still endures. I suggest we need to adopt his attitude, and take up the fight with the same vigor. Please sign up for our seminar, and enter into this war!

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Christian Booksellers Promote Gnosticism

The urgency of our Gnosticism Seminar and subsequent 48-hour course was driven home once again this week as I took a tour of the Christian booksellers online. I wanted to find out what authors are currently speaking out on this issue, with the hope we might find more support in this battle.

Peter Jones is the one Christian voice who has spoken out on this issue. Jones is an adjunct professor at Westminster Seminary and the author of several books on gnosticism, including Cracking Da Vinci’s Code, The Gnostic Empire Strikes Back, Gospel Truth and Pagan Lies, and Spirit Wars. But other than him, there’s a deafening silence in Christianity on this insidious disease that’s destroying the Church.

It’s tough going for those who seek to publish works that war against gnosticism. None of the major Christian publishers carry Jones’ works — not Zondervan, not Tyndale and not Baker. Nor do they carry any other books on the topic for that matter.

To put things in perspective, consider Zondervan’s current top ten best sellers. At number one (and number nine in paperback) is Rick Warren’s Purpose Driven Life. It would take more space than I have here to address Warren’s ministry, but let me just say that he’s a disciple of that other Guru of positive thinking, Robert Schuller. He’s a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and actively promotes the one-world government agenda. He adopted Peter Drucker’s methodology of psychological manipulation (for business), using it to build a huge following of so-called believers. He’s so far afield of orthodox Christianity that you couldn’t find him with the Hubble telescope. Yet, this is the author that Zondervan promotes, because there’s big bucks at stake.

Also on the list we see other great works such as Jesus for President by Shane Claiborne, Velvet Elvis and Sex God by Rob Bell, and for light reading, they have the novel Between Sundays by Karen Kingsbury. None of these books come close to representing the historic Christian Faith.

So, I went to Christianbooks.com hoping that there I’d find something on gnosticism. And sure enough, I did. There’s several books there on the topic — but they promote it rather than condemn it! Let’s start with The Gnostics: The First Christian Heretics by Sean Martin. This favorable view of the gnostics starts by claiming that the early church fathers “were fanatics with an axe to grind.” Then we see Rethinking Gnosticism by Michael Williams. The title gives it away — we need to rethink our hostility towards the gnostics, because they “have been greatly misunderstood.”

Finally, Christianbooks.com sells Forbidden Faith: The Secret History of Gnosticism to The Da Vinci Code by Richard Smoley. Here’s the back cover introduction:

“Forbidden Faith provides the enduring story and continuing legacy of those errant faithful who have had direct experiences of the divine that can’t be explained by the official beliefs of the Church.”

So much for the exclusivity of Biblical revelation. Among Mr. Smoley’s contributions to humanity, he’s also written The Dice Game of Shiva: How Consciousness Creates the Universe. Perhaps he’s more of a Hindu than a Christian. Could it be?

So, there you have it. The great saints of the early church are being attacked by these revisionists who cannot stand for the historic defense of the true Christian Faith. And these Christian publishers are all too willing to go along. I guess we’re just too critical of those nice Grecian warriors popping out of the Trojan Horse — they’re misunderstood and we’re fanatics with an axe to grind. Never mind that they are slaying everyone in the church; we’re overreacting.

So, I hope you can see the reason for the urgency for the seminar and course. We aim to take a stand, regardless of the complacency of our brothers.  Mark the date — don’t miss it. It’s way too crucial.

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Urgent Seminar: Trojan Horses, Gnosticism and Christianity

Sovereign Grace Chapel and Trinity Bible Institute are pleased to host a most-needed seminar entitled ‘The Trojan Horse in the Church’. This is urgent because Christianity is in great peril. The date of the seminar is July 8th and 9th. (Details to follow).

The topic is Gnosticism. I have written previously about our upcoming seminar, but I am compelled to expand on things already said. Gnosticism is not some ancient cult that has long since passed off the scene. Rather, it is Paganism’s perennial outreach program to the Church throughout history. The Gnostics began their mission in the earliest times and have persisted, finding a foothold here and there over the centuries. Today, because our current Church leadership lacks a spirit of hostility towards it, Gnosticism is making a comeback. A huge comeback.

Christianity is built on one foundation — the Truth. Truth about Christ, God, man, history, the spiritual realm and everything else the Bible addresses. Paganism is built on two foundations — outright lies about about all these things, and secondly, distortions and perversions of the Truth. These distortions and perversions is what we call Gnosticism.

Gnostics capitalize on spiritual deception. They use stealth, half-truths, truths mixed with lies, lies mixed with truth, all designed to seduce the unsuspecting away from a proper and healthy relationship with the Almighty.

So today, we have blatant forms of Gnosticism, presenting itself under the name of the New Age Movement. However, it is the subtle forms of Gnosticism that are more pernicious — forms that even the most conservative churches have embraced. These will be the topic of our seminar.

Let me give you one example. Gnosticism always attacks the ‘ex nihilo’ creation account that the Bible teaches — that God created the universe in six literal days, and created it out of nothing. In other words, God spoke it into existence by nothing more than the power of his words. And He did so for His own good pleasure.

Gnosticism always distorts this truth. It attacks the creation account in a number of ways. It may say that the creation came into being through evolution. It may say that it came into being twice. It may say that there was a ‘gap’ of millions of years before Adam and Eve arrived. It may say that God had some need to create it. It may say that the Bible is not clear about how it all happened. It may say that creation was a huge divine mistake. It may say that it really doesn’t matter how it happened or what anyone believes about it.

Whatever Gnosticism says about it, you can be sure it accuses those who hold to the orthodox view of creation as trouble-makers; contentious and divisive. However, the problem does not lie with those who stand firm for Biblical truth; it lies with those who seek to undermine it. So, many conservative churches have willingly accepted a degree of Gnosticism in order to maintain unity of their congregation. To many pastors it seems like such a minor compromise, but once Gnosticism gets a foothold, it spreads and attacks other areas of Christianity. Soon, that orthodox Christian church is no longer either orthodox or Christian.

There can be no compromise with Gnosticism in any of its forms. We must war against it with extreme vigor. Our seminar will give Christians a great overview of the problem, and arm them for the battles that lie ahead. Please seriously consider attending — it is THE issue of our day.

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Urgent Summer Seminar – Addressing the Key Issue of our Time

Sovereign Grace Chapel is hosting a one-day seminar in July entitled “The Trojan Horse in the Church”. It is an introduction to Gnosticism and an invitation to attend a forty-eight hour course beginning the third week of July. We are inviting the general public to attend, as we believe this to be the most crucial issue of our time — both for the church and for society at large. It is THE issue of our day.

As I watch the unravelling of our nation and our culture, I barely can believe this is really happening with such speed. The financial system is on the verge of collapse; the federal government has snubbed it’s nose at the Constitution; our elected officials have nothing but disdain for their constituents; we’re being molested at our airports in the name of ‘security’; our national debt is now so large it cannot be paid back; and our unemployment is soaring though the roof. Our very survival as a nation is doubtful.

While I do not believe the Church’s function is to overtake political institutions, I do believe it must be society’s moral compass. You’d think that it would be engaged in this national battle somehow. You’d think it would be calling public officials into account for their unrighteousness. You’d think it would be rebuking the bankers for their ill-gotten gains. You’d think that it would expose the lies upon lies that are systemically told to the public about the environment, the reasons for wars, the erosion of basic freedoms, and the lack of defense of our borders. You’d think it would be energetically involved in all these things.

As much as I appreciate the efforts of the Tea Party, the Libertarians, the Constitutionalists, and conservative political commentators, their efforts are doomed to failure. They lack one thing: the moral certitude that only comes from orthodox Christianity. They all are laboring from faulty premises such as economic theories and secular political positions. None are defending a Christian world view that leads to sound economic and political realities. The Church is the only entity that can provide that foundation, and it is no where to be found. Unless it recovers its senses and leads this nation out of its current darkness, there is no hope for us as a culture.

So, where are the voices for righteousness? Why is the Church so deafeningly silent? Why is it so disengaged and detached? Why is it unwilling or unable to speak up?

Well, here’s the reason that the church is not engaged: It is as corrupt as our nation. It has severed the rope that tied it to all historic sensibilities. It has forsaken theology and embraced philosophy. As a result, it is pursuing trivialities and forsaking the weighty issues of our day. It is concerned with all sorts of things, none of which is relevant to the struggle we face today. It has become a buffoon that no one can take seriously.

So, you may ask, how did all this happen? This happened because the church leaders brought the Trojan Horse into our sanctuaries. Thinking themselves wise in doing so, they became fools. (SEE previous blog post).

This Trojan Horse is Gnosticism. It was built by Pagans to advance Pagan agendas. Once inside the Church, it unleashed its distorted and perverted doctrines which has deceived many, leading them astray. As a result, the Church has lost its moral compass. It cannot find its own way out of the forest, much less lead anyone else out.

That is why this seminar is so crucial. It is our attempt to shine a light in the darkness for everyone who will hear. We have high hopes that it will be well-attended. This is not a seminar you will find elsewhere, and time is of the essence. So, please mark your calendars.

Date & Time: Friday, July 8th 6:30PM – 9:30PM
Saturday, July 9th 9AM – 12:00 Noon

Place: Sovereign Grace Chapel

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Upcoming Seminar: “The Trojan Horse Inside the Church”

We are very pleased to announce that this summer we are hosting a one-day seminar entitled The Trojan Horse Inside the Church.  This seminar is an urgent call to return to the historic Christian faith — which so many are quickly abandoning.  We will present an overview of Gnosticism and how it is infecting the Church.  The seminar is designed as an introduction to the problem, so we will also offer a forty-eight hour course on Gnosticism beginning the third week of July.  This seminar is free; the course is $50 to cover the cost of materials.  We will announce shortly who our speakers will be.

We chose the imagery of the Trojan Horse for this seminar because it illustrates the situation churches face today.  Here’s the background:  Sometime in the 12th century B.C., Greece attacked the city of Troy (located in modern day Turkey).  The armies battled to a stalemate until the general of the Greeks came up with an ingenious idea.  He had his men build a giant wooden horse with a hollow torso.  Then, he abandoned it, making the Trojans believe he had given up the attempt to overtake the city.  So, the Trojans gleefully brought the horse into the city as a symbol of their victory.

As they say, the rest is history.

To paint the analogy, think of the Greeks as the Pagans and the Trojans as the Christians.  Obviously, neither group has anything in common with the other – and both are at war with each other.  When Christianity came onto the scene of human history, Paganism really had no competition; the entire gentile world was Pagan.  However, Christianity challenged Paganism so seriously in the early days that it was in danger of extinction.  It could not hold onto the grip it had on humanity because it was being exposed for the fraud that it is.

So the general of the Pagans (Satan himself) came up with his ingenious plan.   He had his army construct a ‘horse’ out of the doctrines of Christianity, only he perverted and distorted those doctrines in ways that the unsuspecting church might to caught off guard.  Some of the distortions are very subtle; others more obvious. But taken together, they all comprise the horse we now call Gnosticism.

Many in the early church brought the horse into the church, thinking it to be compatible with Christianity.  They knew it had been built by the Pagans, but foolishly thought it to have value to the Church.  Having brought it into the church, out of its belly came false teachers who now had access and respectability within the church.  The faith of many was in jeopardy.

Paganism adapted to its circumstances, and now had hope for survival.  This is exactly what the Pagan general was hoping for — a mixing of truth and lies that would effectively bring truth to its knees, and allow his fraud to live on.

Today, Gnosticism is alive and very well.  Our church pastors, scholars, teachers and congregations are thoroughly impacted.  Truth is on the run, and distortions and perversions are on the rise.  Its a very dark hour and the Church needs cleansing.  We hope that this seminar will be useful to that end.

So, mark your calendars.  There will be two sessions – each covering the same material.  More details will be forthcoming as we get closer to the date.

Date and Time:
Friday, July 8th   6:30PM – 9:30PM
Saturday, July 9th  9AM – 12:00 Noon

Place:
Sovereign Grace Chapel

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The Way through the Woods

As many of you know, Rudyard Kipling wrote a poem ‘The Way through the Woods’ which is one of Roger’s favorites.  Applying it to Christianity today, it is really quite haunting.  We reproduce it here for your enjoyment.

The Way through the Woods
Rudyard Kipling

THEY shut the road through the woods
Seventy years ago.
Weather and rain have undone it again,
And now you would never know
There was once a road through the woods
Before they planted the trees.
It is underneath the coppice and heath,
And the thin anemones.
Only the keeper sees
That, where the ring-dove broods,
And the badgers roll at ease,
There was once a road through the woods.
Yet, if you enter the woods
Of a summer evening late,
When the night-air cools on the trout-ringed pools
Where the otter whistles his mate,
(They fear not men in the woods,
Because they see so few.)
You will hear the beat of a horse’s feet,
And the swish of a skirt in the dew,
Steadily cantering through
The misty solitudes,
As though they perfectly knew
The old lost road through the woods.
But there is no road through the woods.

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Are you really confident in the Bible?

Not too long ago, I had a conversation with an elder in an evangelical church here in Colorado Springs.  Somehow, we got on the topic of the Genesis account of creation.  He said to me, “Do you still believe in the literal 6-day creation account?”  I said, “Yes, absolutely!”

“Wow,” he replied, “I didn’t know there were any of you guys left.”  Then, came the most distressing part of the whole conversation.  His wife, who had been quietly listening to all this, broke in saying, “Honey, we don’t believe in creation anymore?  I didn’t know!”

Here was a man who had quietly and secretly lost his confidence in the Bible.  He no longer believed what he once did.  He’d been drawn away from sound doctrine and his own wife wasn’t aware.  Now her faith was being shaken.  It was a sobering moment for all of us.

(While this article could be a discussion of evolution vs creation, that’s not my purpose here.  I’ll reserve that discussion for another post.  I want to discuss the broader issue of Biblical inerrancy.)

While all evangelicals hold the Bible in high esteem, that really is not sufficient to hold anyone to sound doctrine.  Even if you believe the Bible is inspired by God, but think it cannot be reconciled with reality, then there’s a major problem.

This brings me to what is one of Sovereign Grace Chapel’s great strengths — our defense of the inerrancy of the Bible through solid reasoning using the best scholarship.     The doctrine of inerrancy answers many questions about the Bible.  Is the Bible without any errors whatsoever? Without error pertaining to grammar, syntax and spelling?  Without error pertaining to history?  Without error pertaining to geography?  Without error pertaining to science where it so addresses?  Without error as a guide to Godliness?  Without error pertaining to salvation?  Without error pertaining to the nature of the Holy Trinity?  Without error pertaining to the person and works of the Lord Jesus Christ?  And, without error pertaining to everything else I may have overlooked?

Implied in these questions are a corollary:  Is the Bible without any contradictions?  Believers and unbelievers alike have this innate concept that contradictions are unacceptable.  Both need logical consistency; otherwise, they know they’re evaluating something false.  So, is the Bible without contradictions about peoples, places or events?  Is it free from contradictions about man’s predicament and God’s plan of salvation?  Does it contradict established scientific facts — especially those related to the origin of the world?

The Bible was written over a period of fifteen centuries.  It is comprised of sixty-six books and was written by over forty authors.  So, you might think that somewhere, somehow, in all that time and within all those authors, someone must have made some mistake somewhere.  We know how prone to error we all are — surely there’s at least one in all those writings.

But, this is where the Bible stands out among all the books ever written.  The writers were superintended by the Holy Spirit, so that what they wrote was, indeed, without error.  It is the ONLY book (or should I say, the only sixty-six books) that was ever superintended is such a way by God Almighty.  The result is that we now recognize that the Bible is inspired by God.  No other book can legitimately claim this supernatural quality.

You may ask, what proof do I offer to support such a claim?  Well, Sovereign Grace Chapel offers the Chicago Statement on Bible Inerrancy as our proof.  This really isn’t ‘our’ proof, per se, but belongs to the evangelical church for whom it was written.  You see, one of the great battles of our time has been over the authority, accuracy and reliability of the Bible. It’s veracity has been viciously attacked from many sides.

In response to these attacks, a group of Christian scholars convened several times between 1978-1986. Through their efforts, three documents were produced which you will find here on our website. These are tremendous works in defense of the inerrancy of the Bible, and we are most grateful for their efforts. Sovereign Grace Chapel endorses these works and find them compatible with our own views of the Scriptures.  And if these works are not sufficient to convince you, we have a list of recommended books on this topic here on our website as well.

So, there’s no reason to deviate from the literal 6-day creation account.  The Bible does not contradict true science.  And, it doesn’t say one thing, but really mean the opposite.  We believe that any ‘contradictions’ in the Bible are not ‘in’ the Bible at all, but rather are in the minds of men who haven’t the confidence or the piety to remain steadfast.  To the pious believer who diligently looks, the resolve will come.

But to those like this elder who was swept away with false ideas about creation, we offer a way back.  We can re-ignite confidence in the Good Book.  You’ll see that it can withstand every attack.

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Why Build a Home Library?

Home libraries were once considered a great luxury.  Only the very wealthy could afford to possess books in any great quantity.

Certainly, the very wealthy often spent enormous resources on books.  I recently visited the J.P. Morgan Library in New York City.  This is one of the world’s great collection of books by a private party.  His motives were partly investing — putting money into things that would hold value.  And, I suppose, he also sought prestige in acquiring the rare books he was able to purchase.  For instance, he acquired one of the first printings of the Gutenberg Bible.  Who knows what that may be worth today!

But for the Christian, building a home library takes on a different purpose.  For us, we are in a life-long pursuit to understand the great grace that we have received.  We want to know who this God is who has done such wonderful things in our lives.  And, as we grow in this understanding, we discover the things He has done in history.  In fact, history records so many events that help us to understand the purposes of God in all of creation.

But beyond history, God has revealed a tremendous amount about His very nature — who God is in His essence.  It’s really quite remarkable that He has been willing to grant us so much information about Himself.  Our God is truly knowable!  If only we take the time to look — and mostly, read.

So, the books we are interested in reading provide us with insight into spiritual things that we cannot see with our eyes.  The authors of these books have been on their own journeys of discovery, and we can learn much from their studies and their experiences.

Before the printing press, it would cost you about $100,000 to own your own copy of the Bible.  So, Christians relied on public readings, memorization and word of mouth to know what it says.  But today, even the poorest among us can acquire a few books.  If you look hard enough, many worthwhile books can be purchased for very little money.

In addition to the affordability of books, we also have the advantage of 2000 years of history in which worthwhile books have been written.  There’s much to be learned from the saints of past generations — and I believe we should honor their lives by reading their books.

So, I believe we should be constantly reading.  This is how we come to conclusions about theological issues, and become stable in our Christian lives.  In that sense, it is an act of worship.  Pastor Roger has created the ‘building a library’ list of books which I have been acquiring for years (see the list here).  Every so often, I review the list to see which work I should acquire next.  These books have played a huge role in my own Christian development.  And, I am constantly pulling one of them off the shelf to look up something.  They have become my friends.

I encourage everyone to do the same — keep a list of books you want to purchase and work on it little by little.  Before you know it, you’ve got a great start to your own library!

Defending the Faith,
Tom

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