Title & Purpose

Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble:

for the day of the LORD cometh, for it is nigh at hand, Joel 2:1.


All quotations from the Scriptures will be from the Authorised Version - the best and most accurate English translation of the Scriptures.

Please see sermons down the left hand column of the Blog about why the Authorised Version is the best and most accurate English translation of the Scriptures

and why we reject the many perversions of the Scriptures, including those so beloved of many neo-evangelicals at present such as ESV & NKJV.

Beware of the Errors in The Reformation Heritage KJV Study Bible! 
Featured Sermons:

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Atheists very annoyed by the Consider Christ Campaign!

An advert sponsored by The British Humanist Association is running on billboards in each of the UK's capital cities: London, Cardiff and Edinburgh.

From what is reported on the BBC news website the local spokesman for the BHA is very annoyed at the recent Consider Christ campaign run by the Free Presbyterian Church. 

Upon the launch of this poster Mr Brian McClinton said that the poster provided 'opposition to the near ubiquitous 'Consider Christ' ads that are currently covering most of our Translink buses'.

This comment would indicate that Mr Brian McClinton is not best pleased with the extensive coverage of our campaign has received or the media attention it has attracted. It is evidently having an effect. 

This reminds us of the power of the Word of God. You don’t need fancy marketing slogans that appear on many church signs across the country. It is the Word of God that is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart, Hebrews ch 4:12. It certainly seems to be doing its work in Mr McClinton’s mind!

May it be true of individuals like Mr McClinton as was true of Saul of Tarsas: it hard to kick against the pricks. Atheists can and have been converted. 

May the Lord continue to bless those 'Consider Christ' adverts which are still on the buses.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

A good day for free speech

The BBC is reporting that the government has admitted defeat in their attempt to remove a 'free speech' defence from new laws against inciting homophobic hatred.

Summary
MPs have voted four times to scrap it but it has been repeatedly overturned in the Lords, who again last night voted by 179 to 135 to keep it.

An offence of inciting hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation was brought in by legislation last year, but a 'free speech' defence, opposed by the government, was inserted by Conservative peer Lord Waddington.

The law was not brought into force while the government sought to remove the defence but on Thursday, the last day of this Parliamentary session, the government admitted defeat in a statement from the Ministry of Justice. A spokeswoman said the government was 'very disappointed' at the Lords vote and as the threshold for prosecution was 'high', the defence was not needed.

She said: 'The offence only covers words or behaviour that are threatening and intended to stir up hatred'. But she added the government could no longer delay the passage of the Coroners and Justice Bill. 'It is with considerable disappointment, therefore, that the government has agreed not to remove the 'freedom of expression' section'.

She added that the law against inciting homophobic hatred would now be brought into force 'as quickly as possible' and the government would return to the issue in future 'should it prove necessary to do so'.

However the concession was not announced by Justice Secretary Jack Straw in the Commons on Thursday. Instead deputy speaker Sir Alan Haslehurst read out a list of amendments on which 'this House does not insist, in its disagreement with the Lords'.

Conservative MP Edward Leigh asked, unsuccessfully, for a statement from Mr Straw, adding it appeared 'that the government has run up the white flag on the Lord Waddington amendment. This is a great victory for free speech, I think we should know more about it'.

MPs have, on four occasions, voted to remove the free speech clause from the bill by large majorities during its passage through Parliament. Ahead of Wednesday's vote in the Lords justice minister Lord Bach warned peers: 'There must come a point where this House, with all its great virtues, gives way to the House that has been elected by the people of this country'.

But Lord Waddington argued that peers had to maintain consistency: 'If we are to finish up with a free speech clause in the religious hatred offence but no free speech clause here, we're simply asking for trouble'.

And during the Lords debate crossbencher Lord Dear cited the example of grandmother Pauline Howe, 67, who was visited by police after writing a letter to Norwich Council to complain about a gay pride march.

The council informed her the letter was assessed as 'potentially being hate related' - she argued she was expressing her Christian beliefs.

On Thursday Simon Calvert, of The Christian Institute, welcomed the government's decision as a 'victory for common sense'.


Comment
This is indeed to be welcomed. Thankfully it is still legally possible to call sin sin and to declare with Scripture that sodomy is an abomination to God: Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination, Lev 18:22.

'The abortion capital of Europe'!

The news that Britain has become the abortion capital of Europe ought to be connected in our minds with the government's insistence that children of a younger and younger age must received 'sex education' and also with the removal of a parent's right to remove their children from receiving this 'sex education' after the age of fifteen.

There can only be one outcome when younger and younger children are introduced to topics at an age far beyond their capacity to appreciate and understand them.

One thing this 'sex education', required by the government, never includes is the moral teaching of the Word of God which forbids sexual intercourse prior to and outside of marriage.

An immoral generation and multitudes of murdered, aborted children is the result of this educational requirement.

There will be no change to these sad facts while this policy persists of introducing sex education at an ever earlier age and the absence of biblical morality.

Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people, Proverbs 14:34.

Friday, 6 November 2009

The Alpha Course part 5

What is wrong with 'The Alpha Course'?

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4

The Alpha Course is 'New Age' in Ethos.
Let me briefly define what is meant by 'New Age'. It is that movement which shares a vision of a new age of enlightenment and harmony (the Age of Aquarius) and who subscribes to a common worldview. That common worldview is based on Monism (all is one), Pantheism (all is God) and Mysticism (the experience of oneness with the divine).

The New Age Movement is evidenced in the Animal Rights Activists, Eco-warriors, the Green Movement, the anti-capitalists rioters, anti-gender brigade, etc, etc. There is a spiritual side to all these lobby groups and it’s false religion. They practice a religious syncretism which brings together different and sometimes contradictory religious and philosophical teachings. The New Age Movement is not 'new' in the sense of its teachings never been known before. It is but a 'new' expression of age old heresies.

In this sense of the term The Alpha Course is New Age in Ethos.

i. The New Agers are very much at home with The Alpha Course.
Commenting on the ‘Holy Spirit Away Weekend’, Nicky Gumbel says of those who had come from a New Age background:
They are on more familiar territory in experiencing the Holy Spirit. Telling Others, page 19.

How can this be? How can something that claims to lead men to the truth be in such harmony with that which is expressly not of God? The answer is that the Alpha Course is not of God but is of another spirit, even the spirit of antichrist. The same philosophy that underpins New Ageism underpins The Alpha Course.

ii. Experience leads to explanation.
This is the philosophy of the Toronto Blessing, The Alpha Course and New Ageism. There can be no absolutes in New Ageism. There is no infallible standard by which all things are to be judged. No individual can claim to have the truth.

The philosophy of those who promote the Alpha Course is similar. Whatever works, run with it. If a methodology ‘works’ then it has value and merit, regardless of whether or not it is Scriptural.

John Wimber applied this philosophy to his life and ministry. He focused more on experience and feeling than on doctrine. He even warned against ‘worshipping the Book’. He mocked those who judged everything strictly by the Bible saying they have ‘God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Book. He also warned against being ‘too rigid’ and ‘too heavily oriented to the written Word, John Wimber, Counterfeit Revival.

Nicky Gumbel esteemed John Wimber very highly, tracing his ministry in many respects back to the ‘Word of Knowledge’ that Wimber gave to him. This type of practice in the professing Church of Christ is New Age philosophy at work. Anything goes, if it prospers. It is subjective religion, based on experience.

iii. A direct mirror of New Age Philosophy.
A direct parallel exists between the teachings of the New Age Movement and The Alpha Course. The two can be set side by side. The same ideas and concepts appear in both. The similarity goes to demonstrate that they both are the fruit of the same corrupt and false tree.

[1] Moving into the realm of the supernatural. The whole growth of gifts and the phenomena of modern Charismatics is often spoken of as the Church moving into the realm of the supernatural.

New Agers talk about humanity moving onto a higher plain. To them there is a coming Utopia. New Agers believe there is a new world order coming which involves one-world government, global socialism and a New Age religion.

[2] The idea of the experience of the Holy Ghost. According to The Alpha Course this is the leaving of yourself open to whatever God has for you. Attenders are to seek this experience of the Holy Spirit, which is nothing more than something emotional and subjective.

New Agers call it tuning into the divine consciousness. This ‘transformation’ is in two aspects: ‘Personal Transformation’ and ‘Planetary Transformation’.

Personal Transformation’ is variously described as ‘enlightenment’, ‘attunement’, ‘God realisation’, and ‘self actualisation’.

Planetary Transformation’ is brought about as a ‘critical mass’ of ‘personally transformed’ individuals take socio-political responsible for the world of humankind.

[3] The idea of supernatural gifts. The Alpha Course teaches that we all are to seek for the experience these gifts, have new revelations and ‘words of knowledge’ from the spirit world. As already pointed out Nicky Gumbel numbers the days of his ministry from such a ‘Word of Knowledge’.

New Agers call it ‘channelling from the spirit world’. A ‘channeller’ is one who yields control of his or her perceptual and cognitive capacities to a spiritual entity or force with the intent of receiving paranormal information.

[4] The obtaining of the anointing from a teacher. Gumbel believed he had it from Wimber. ‘Transmission of anointing’ by the closeness or the touch of a teacher on the forehead.

New Agers call it transmission into higher consciousness through the close proximity of a guru.

Conclusion
The Alpha Course is devious and ought not to be touched by any who love the truth revealed in Christ Jesus. It is deficient in doctrine, ecumenical in emphasis, charismatic in tone and New Age is ethos.

There are those who have acknowledged the validity of some of our criticisms:
An infectious enthusiasm, entrepreneurial spirit, and a bold plan for growth are all trademarks among Alpha’s top leaders. But not everyone is cheering Alpha onward. Some church leaders have found Alpha teaching too charismatic, too experience-driven, and too negative about traditional churches. Martyn Percy, director of the Lincoln Theological Institute for the Study of Religion and Society of the University of Sheffield, England, has commented about Alpha that it is ‘a package rather than a pilgrimage.’ In a recent essay, he said, ‘It is a confident but narrow expression of Christianity, which stresses the personal experience of the Spirit over the Spirit in the church. ... The Alpha approach has been faulted for pushing an experience-driven approach to evangelism that sidesteps intellectual difficulties. Christianity Today 9th February, 1998

Nicky Gumbel’s Alpha Course contains a little truth but much error. It is a well-packaged meal with a dose of e.coli. The non-discerning are at risk. To be spiritually healthly you need to avoid being contaminated with it!