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Identifying False Teaching in Christian Bookstores

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Wolves in the Pulpit

Dr. Tom Pennington, of Countryside Bible Church, in Southlake, TX, features his expository sermons here.  From that collection, a particular 3-part series  is showcased at The Berean Library entitled, “Wolves in the Pulpit,” from Matt 7:15-20.  Links are part 1, part 2 and part 3.  Part three contains a list of 10 ways how to fall prey to false teachers (minute marker 42:55).  Many of the “wolves in sheep’s clothing,” seen below, have authored books, including bestsellers, sold in Christian bookstores.  Beware!  

February 4, 2014, Janet Mefferd talked with Pastor Pennington on this specific series in a summarized fashion.  Excellent!

This is a very significant topic in the church as sheep are prone to stray and be misled.  Dr. Pennington is one such knowledgeable and discerning undershepherd who teaches us from God’s Word how to identify false teachers to beware of so as not to be misled as Jesus, Paul, Peter, John and Jude warned (Titus 1:9).

Ultimately, a false teacher cannot mislead a true sheep.  Praise the Lord!  The Shepherd will bring His sheep unto Himself.  However, sheep can be temporarily misled if they are new believers who do not have knowledge and discernment from God’s Word.  This happened to me twice, before and after conversion.  The first time I was misled by the Catholic religion.  The second time I was misled, it happened after being a fairly new convert in the church.  The church growth/seeker-sensitive, prosperity false gospel peddled by false teachers in the church,  ”wolves in sheep’s clothing,” led me to a dangerous false pasture where I barely grew as a Christian nor produced much fruit for God.  Here’s the scary part.  I thought I was growing and serving the Lord in a pleasing way.  However, I would learn by God’s grace-filled correction from His Word that it was not as such.

Another “target” that Dr. Pennington highlights that false teachers prey on are the ones “who want to hear they can have a relationship with the Lord and yet live anyway they wish.”  As in, false teachers tickling itchy ears for people’s felt-needs and  self-centered living, giving license to sin, rather than preaching with an emphasis on Christ and His gospel to repent and live an obedient, holy life, by God’s grace, for the love and glory of God and for the love and interests of others.  Another “target,” or easy prey, of false teachers are those who sick and poor.

Dr. Pennington takes us back to Balaam as the earliest example of a false prophet, in Numbers, to the New Testament teachings and warnings concerning false teachers. He points us to three main markers seen in the character and conduct, content and converts of false teachers that will be identified in their fruit.

~Some Highlights from Dr. Pennington’s Series:

Look at Their Fruit

Mt 7:20:  ”So then you will know them by their fruits.”  Look at the fruit!   Look at the total of his character/conduct, content and converts.

1.  Examine Their Character and Conduct

False Teachers Will Demonstrate:

1)  Motivated by greed (Balaam in Numbers & 2 Pt 2:15; Micah 3:5,11; Matt 23:25; Mark 12:40; Lk 16:14; 1 Tim 6:5; 2 Pt 2:3,14-15; Jude 11);

2)  Sensuality and Sexual Sin (Jer 23:14; Rom 16:18; Jude 4, 17; 2 Pt 2:10, 13-14, 18);

3)  Arrogance (2 Tim 3:4; 2 Pt 2:10, 18; Jude 8, 16)

 2.  Examine the Content of the Teaching Against the Scripture (Lk 6:43-45; Dt 13; Acts 17:11; 2 Cor 4:2; 1 Jn 4:6).  1 Jn 4:1-21 Guide:  Does it exalt Christ   and His gospel?  Does it promote true holiness and likeness of Christ?  Does it promote God’s Word?   Does his teaching promote love for God and others?

 3.  Examine Their  Converts (Lk 6:40; 2 Pt 2:2; Rev 2:20).  Do they act in godliness or licentiousness?

Dr. Pennington’s Examples of False Teachers and Their Bad Fruit Doctrine: (go to minute marker 36:18 of Part 3)

1.  Pope Francis & the entire Roman Catholic system because it teaches a false works-based gospel;

2.  Cults (like Morrmanism and Jehovah’s Witnesses) because they have a false God than the biblical God and a different Jesus and a different gospel;

3.  Church of Christ (COC)/Galatian heresy:  adding baptismal regeneration to salvation that is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone (though many have left this heresy in COC, many remain);

4. Post-modern (Emergent) teachers like Brian McLaren and Rob Bell who undermine cardinal doctrines of the Christian faith;

5. Faith healers and all who preach the prosperity gospel (list is very long, primary ones listed):  Creflo Dollar, TD Jakes, Joyce Meyer, Jan Crouch and her late husband Paul Crouch, Kenneth Hagin, Kenneth Copeland, Paula White, Jesse Duplantis, Robert Tilton, Eddie Long, Todd Bentley, Fred Price, Benny Hinn, Joel Osteen, etc.  Spectrum ranges from the TBN gaudy type to the intelligent, hip and smooth, edgy-type;

6. Beware Parents:  Christian colleges where in religion class teachers systematically tear down the faith once delivered to the saints.  *My note here:  we have seen this first hand with ecumenism at a local Christian school grades K-12.

Judgment of False Teachers:  Mt 7:19-20; 2 Pt 2:2-6,9-10; Jude 13-15.  Examples of God’s judgment in Scripture:  1)  God did not spare the angels of disobedience; 2)  The Great Flood; 3)  Sodom and Gomorrah, etc.

Why does God allow false teachers?  Answer:  1 Cor 11:19.  God allows false teachers because He is removing the chaff.  Allowed by God to test hearts.  True believers stick!

Conclusion:

Be a good Berean!  (Acts 17:11)

“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy!  To the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord be glory, majesty, dominion and authority before all time, today and forever!  Amen.” (Jude 1:24-25)

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The Alpha Course by Nicky Gumbel (Bad Fruit)

Biblical Resources:

Deception in the Church’s Exposé, by Sandy Simpson, with a Report on the Singapore Cell Church Model

Apprising Ministry’s EXCELLENT Berean Examination of Nicky Gumbel’s Teachings, by Michael J. Penfold.  Additional Research at Apprising Ministries Regarding John Piper’s Endorsement for a Preacher, and Desring God Conference 2013 Guest Speaker Candidate, who Utilizes The Alpha Course here

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Born Fundamentalist Born Again Catholic by David B. Currie (Bad Fruit)

Biblical Resources:

Simply, providential that I caught Mike Gendron’s, “Remembering the Reformation,” from last Sunday, Oct 31, 2011, in my Facebook newsfeed this week.  Meanwhile, Dr. Gilley just published, today, two, new book reviews that are astounding examples of what Mr. Gendron was highlighting just days earlier in his message.  Mr. Gendron and his wife attend  Grace Life Church of Dallas.

For another example, besides the author of this book, take ecumenical evangelical Chuck Colson, of Break Point Christian Radio.  He wrote The Body, in 1994, to heighten the cause of infusing the Catholic religion into the church of believers, by referring to Catholics as “our brothers and sisters in Christ,” etc.  He was a main proponent for the ecumenical Manhattan Declaration, in 2009, which continues to promote unity between evangelicals and Catholics by utilizing moral and social issues as the catalyst, not the Gospel.  I am thankful Dr. John MacArthur was not one of its signatories, an uncompromising stance for what is true and loving.  A godly example that needs to be forefront when believers are faced with decisions whether or not to become interfaith.

Evangelicals are dangerously heading back to Rome.  Brethren, be sober and take heed of this apostasaical movement that is ramping up in recent days!  It rejects the “narrow path” of the True Gospel of faith alone, in Christ alone, by grace alone, according to the Scriptures alone, all to the glory of God alone.  This popular false movement, partnered by the Emergent Church Movement (ECM), is one part of the “wide path” that leads to destruction; back to the man-made, self-righteous, idolatrous traditions of Babylon.

 Dr. Gary Gilley’s Review

Mike Gendron’s Message on God’s Providential Reformation-The Five Solas

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The Great Emergence ~How Christianity is Changing and Why by Phyllis Tickle (Bad Fruit)

 Biblical Resources:   

Richard Bennett (ex-Roman Catholic priest) of the Berean Beacon (richly informative video below) Exposes the Dangerous Ties of Pagan, Mystic Religions (specifically Catholicism, Hinduism, Buddhism) in the Emergent Church Movement (ECM). Mr. Bennett discusses the false teachings of Phyllis Tickle (The Great Emergence) and many, many more, like the Jesuits, Ignatius of Loyola, Thomas Merton. Also discussed is Richard Foster and Tony Jones who have been major post-modern contributors to the ECM false teachings.

 

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An Emergent Manifesto of Hope by Doug Pagitt and Tony Jones (Bad Fruit)

 

 

Biblical Resources:

Dr. Gary Gilley’s Review

Berean Beacon Video: Exposes the Ties Between the Catholic Religion and The Emergent Church Movement (ECM)

Dr. Gary Gilley Discusses the False Teachings of Brian McLaren, Richard Foster, Tony Jones and the ECM:

*Part 1:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrUSzkvWotA

*Part 2:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znpxJk1iF4g

*Part 3:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VEVycIJluo

 

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The New Christians by Tony Jones (Bad Fruit)

Biblical Resources:

Berean Beacon Video: Exposes the Ties Between the Catholic Religion and The Emergent Church Movement (ECM)

Dr. Gary Gilley Discusses the False Teachings of Brian McLaren, Richard Foster, Tony Jones and the ECM:

*Part 1:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrUSzkvWotA

*Part 2:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znpxJk1iF4g

*Part 3:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VEVycIJluo

 

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Soul Shaper by Tony Jones (Bad Fruit)

 Biblical Resources:

Berean Beacon Video: Exposes the Ties Between the Catholic Religion and The Emergent Church Movement (ECM)

Dr. Gary Gilley Discusses the False Teachings of Brian McLaren, Richard Foster, Tony Jones and the ECM:

*Part 1:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrUSzkvWotA

*Part 2:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znpxJk1iF4g

*Part 3:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VEVycIJluo

 

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Post-Modern Youth Ministry by Tony Jones (Bad Fruit)

Biblical Resources:

Berean Beacon Video: Exposes the Ties Between the Catholic Religion and The Emergent Church Movement (ECM)

Dr. Gary Gilley Discusses the False Teachings of Brian McLaren, Richard Foster, Tony Jones and the ECM:

*Part 1:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrUSzkvWotA

*Part 2:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znpxJk1iF4g

*Part 3:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VEVycIJluo

 

 

 

 

 

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Divine Intervention by Tony Jones (Bad Fruit)

Biblical Resources:

Berean Beacon Video: Exposes the Ties Between the Catholic Religion and The Emergent Church Movement (ECM)

Dr. Gary Gilley Discusses the False Teachings of Brian McLaren, Richard Foster, Tony Jones and the ECM:

*Part 1:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrUSzkvWotA

*Part 2:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znpxJk1iF4g

*Part 3:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VEVycIJluo

 

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Ask, Seek, Knock by Tony Jones (Bad Fruit)

   Biblical Resources:

Berean Beacon Video: Exposes the Ties Between the Catholic Religion and The Emergent Church Movement (ECM)

Dr. Gary Gilley Discusses the False Teachings of Brian McLaren, Richard Foster, Tony Jones and the ECM:

*Part 1:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrUSzkvWotA

*Part 2:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znpxJk1iF4g

*Part 3:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VEVycIJluo

 

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