"To testify the gospel of the grace of God." Acts 20:24
**PUBLISHED AS A MISSION PROJECT OF PILGRIMS HOPE BAPTIST CHURCH**
Vol. XIII, No. 1 January 1, 1997
THE PROMISE KEEPERS: SATANS LATEST TOOL OF DECEPTION
IS THIS HATRED?
By Wayne Camp
1 Timothy 4:1-2 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron . . . If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained.
Matthew 7:21-23 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Perhaps this article should have been included in the early part of the first article I wrote in this series on the Promise Keepers. We have been receiving mail in which we have been accused of hating those whose error we expose. It is easier to simply charge this writer with hatred than it is to answer the charges of heresy he makes. It is interesting that those who accuse us of hate and malice in our exposure of error, seek to expose our alleged error. Do they hate this editor and Pilgrims Hope Baptist Church?
A brief look at our first text will show that the exposure of error is the work of a good minister of Jesus Christ. Paul points out several doctrinal errors that were coming on the scene. He told Timothy, "If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ."
I believe the Promise Keepers movement is fraught with many errors. I believe those aligned with PKs are guilty of many doctrinal errors. James Dobson believes in theistic evolution, is cozy with Rome, and uses psychological babble in counseling rather than using Scripture. If he is true to his Nazarene doctrine he denies total hereditary depravity, teaches salvation partially by works, and denies the doctrines of grace. In fact, he is a rank Arminian. He promotes the unscriptural concepts of self-esteem and self-love. He encourages men, such as mass-murderer Ted Bundy, to not accept the responsibility for their sins and/or crimes, but to blame them on society. His daily radio program is heard by tens of millions of people, his magazine has a wider circulation than Vogue and Rolling Stone. Over 300,000 people contact his office every month. He is described by one expert as "the ultimate stealth politician" because of his behind the scenes lobbying in Washington, DC. He wields great power and influence with members of Congress. Such popularity and power was never accorded Jesus, Paul, or any other New Testament preacher. He has promoted Mother Teresa as a great and exemplary Christian. He endorses and promotes a book by Hugh Ross called Fingerprint of God. This book teaches progressive creation. Ross declares the universe is 17 billion years old, give or take 3 billion years. He maintains it began with a God-caused Big Bang and that the stars and planets evolved into their present state during these billions of years. Ross contradicts Scripture by teaching that most of the stars existed long before the earths origin and evolution. Even a casual reading of Genesis one will show this to be a flat contradiction of Scripture. Ross denies that death is the result of sin but was created by God and was a basic part of earthly existence for billions of years before Adam fell. Much more could be said about this book and its blasphemy but the reader should know that James Dobson endorses and promotes such anti-biblical hogwash. And, the PK organization is closely aligned with James Dobson.
Putting you "in remembrance of these things" is not hatred. Paul says such exposure of error is the work of "a good minister of Jesus Christ."
IS THIS HATRED?
Matthew 7:22-23 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
One day in the future Jesus will be sitting as the great Judge at the great white throne judgment described in Revelation 20:11-15. Before him will be gathered all the unsaved of all the ages. Some will come before him who were professed Christians and preachers. They have fervently prayed in his name. They have prophesied and preached in his name. They have cast out demons in his name. And in his name they have done many wonderful works. Please note that Jesus never denies their claims. He merely denies every knowing them as his people. He says to them, "I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." WHAT? Jesus calls these people who have worshipped him, who have preached in his name, who have prophesied in his name, who have even cast out demons in his name and have prayed, workers of iniquity. In the name of brotherly love, how could he do such a thing?
One reader wrote, "I must comment on your condemnation of peoples worship practices and ways they serve God." He says this is wrong. Yet, is that not obviously a part of the import of what Jesus does in the passage in Matthew 7? He declared these who prayed, preached, cast out demons, and did many wonderful works were, in truth, workers of iniquity whom he has never savingly known. They are cast out of his presence into the lake of fire. I ask, "Is this hatred?"
IS THIS HATRED?
2 Corinthians 11:13-15 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
False teachers, parading as Christians and ministers of Christ, had caused a good deal of havoc in the church of God at Corinth. There were a number of heresies, among them the doctrine that the resurrection was already past. There were other matters that caused divisions; some were speaking against Paul and his teachings. These false teachers were claiming to be Christians. They were claiming to be God-called ministers of Christ.
Was it hatred when Paul called them false apostles? Was it hatred when Paul called them deceitful workers? Was it hatred when Paul called them ministers of Satan?
Now, I remind every reader that these men were claiming to be Christians. Yet, Paul dared to criticize their doctrines. Paul even attacked the men themselves calling them false apostles, deceitful workers, and ministers of Satan who were transforming themselves as the ministers of Christ.
Was it hatred that caused Paul to launch this attack on them and their doctrines? I contend that it was love for the church at Corinth and for other churches down through the centuries. He loved that congregation which God had established under his ministry. And, the Holy Spirit would have others know that all who name the name of Christ are not necessarily the servants of Christ. They very well may be the servants of Satan transforming themselves into the ministers of Christ.
IS THIS HATRED?
Isaiah 8:20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.
Dare Isaiah speak in such terms? Dare God, who is actually doing the speaking, go so far as to say that if one does not speak according to his word it is because there is no light in him. Now, he did not say "There is not enough light in him." He said,"There is no light in him" if he does not speak according to Gods word.
When Robert Hicks, who is commended and assisted by Promise Keepers in the publishing of his book, says that Jesus entertained thoughts of committing adultery, fornication, and homosexual acts, he is not speaking according to the inspired word of God. When he suggests that we are to worship God with our phallus, he is not speaking according to the word of God. When he quotes Charles Darwin favorably he is not speaking according to the word of God. When he sets up his six stages in the masculine journey which he takes from paganism and shamanism; he is not speaking according to the word of God. I have not space nor time to deal with his other errors with which I dealt last issue. But, I mention these briefly to show several instances of many in which he speaks according to paganism, shamanism, heathenism, jungianism, and not the word of God. This is enough to say with God and Isaiah, "There is no light in him."
When James Dobson cozies up to Rome he is going contrary to the Word of God. I will be dealing with the alliance that Promise Keepers are forming with Rome next issue, if the Lord wills, and Jesus does not return. In that I will deal with various heresies of Rome and show why Christians and the Lords churches must remain separate from that old whore of Babylon. But, one of the reasons Christians should not support or promote James Dobson, who is aligned with PKs, is his coziness with Rome. In the January, 1990, issue of Focus on the Family Citizen, a Dobson Publication, Pope John Paul II is called "the most eminent religious leader who names the name of Jesus Christ." He has promoted "Mother" Teresa as a genuine Christian who is doing a great work for God when in truth she is a New Ager, does not believe in salvation by grace, nor in the necessity of regeneration, and "considers Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, and other religions to be acceptable ways to God." Yet, Dobson commends her and the Pope as models for Christian youth to follow.
When Bible-Science Newsletter sent a critical letter to Dobson because of his creation beliefs, he responded that he "takes the first eleven chapters of Genesis to be poetry, not factual history" (The BDM Letter, April, 1992). He also said that he agrees "in an unqualified way" that the earth is 3.5 to 4 billion years old.
Dobson says that the first eleven chapters of the Bible that I believe and preach is "not factual history". Now I looked up the word factual and its synonyms are "accurate, authentic, true, and genuine." When Dr. Dobson says the first eleven chapters of Genesis are "not factual history" that is tantamount to saying they are "not accurate history." If they are not accurate history they must be inaccurate history which makes them lies. When Dr. Dobson says that the first eleven chapters of Genesis are "not factual history" that is equivalent to saying the first eleven chapters of Genesis are not authentic history which is equal to saying the first eleven chapters of Gods holy word are spurious. Spurious is the first antonym of authentic. If not factual, they are not authentic, if not authentic, they are spurious. History that is not factual is spurious, be it written in poetic form or otherwise. James Dobson believes the first eleven chapters are not factual history and that is tantamount to saying they are spurious history.
Another synonym of factual is true. Saying that the first eleven chapters of Genesis are "not factual history," as has James Dobson, is identical to saying that the first eleven chapters of Genesis are not true history. In saying this is Dobson not guilty of saying they are untrue, unfactual history?
Lets look at a few things in those eleven chapters that are not true if Dr. Dobson is right and the first eleven chapters are not factual history. "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth" (Gen. 1:1). Is it inaccurate to say that God was in the beginning? Is that someone merely trying to be poetic? God was not in the beginning??? "In the beginning God created." That is not a fact of history? God was not in the beginning and did not therefore create? When did God originate if he was not in the beginning?
There is also the account of the fall of Adam in the third chapter of Genesis. All you folks out there who are teaching that Adam fell and that the whole human race was plunged into sin thereby need to change your message. That story in Genesis three is mere poetry; it is not factual history. It is not authentic history. It is not true history. Of course, you will also have to change how you preach Romans 5:12-19. And, what about the fact that all men are dead in trespasses and sins unless regenerated by the Holy Spirit (Eph. 2:1-3). Throw that all out with Genesis chapters 1-11 and Romans 5:12-19.
That story about Enoch being translatedjust poetry, not factaccording to Dr. Dobson. And, Noah was only a mythological figure and the account of the flood is not factual history. Of course, when you throw out chapters 6-10 of Genesis, you will have to dump a number of Old and New Testament Scriptures as well. You will have to mark up I Chron. 1:4 as untrue because it names Noah and his three sons as being authentic characters in history who were progenitors of Abraham. And, since Dr. Dobson teaches we need to forgive God, I suppose we should forgive him for naming Noah as an authentic character of factual history when he mentions him in Isaiah 54:9. Twice in Ezekiel 14 (verses 14 and 20) this mythical character of poetry, Noah, is named as if he were really a genuine entity who lived in factual history. And, of course, there is Hebrews 11:7 which will have to go because it talks of Noahs great faith and his building the ark and saving his house and condemning the world. If you throw out Genesis, chapters 1-11, you will have to dump Hebrews 11:7 with it.
Twice Peter names Noah as if Peter thought he really existed in factual history. Too bad poor Peter didnt have Dr. Dobson around to focus on his theology and bibliology so he would not be parading Noah as a real character in factual history (See I Peter 3:20 and II Pet. 2:5). Of course, you will have to include Hebrews 11:3 about the creation, 11:4 which names Abel and 11:5 which names Enoch. And, what of the book of Jude which claims that Enoch was a preacher who proclaimed the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ (Jude 14-15).
There are also those NT verses where Noah is written NOE. They will all have to go for they mention this fictional character and that non-factual flood found in the first eleven chapters of Genesis. There are the words of Jesus. Matthew 24:37-38 But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark.
It sounds to me as if Jesus mistakenly thought that Noah was a real person living in factual history who built an authentic ark and went through a real flood. According to Dr. Dobsons position on Genesis 1-11, there was no such person, no such flood, no such ark, and no such days as the days of Noah. Jesus apparently did not know that that was just poetry, and not factual history.
Poor Luke, he was duped into believing the first eleven chapters of Genesis were factual history giving accounts of real, factual people. He mistakenly included Noah (Noe) in the lineage of Jesus Christ. Luke 3:36 Which was the son of Cainan, which was the son of Arphaxad, which was the son of Sem, which was the son of Noe, which was the son of Lamech. He also thought Shem, Noahs son and Lamech, Noahs father were real factual beings. In the next two verses Luke continues to name those men who lived during the period of history recorded in the first eleven chapters of Genesis. Luke 3:37-38 Which was the son of Mathusala, which was the son of Enoch, which was the son of Jared, which was the son of Maleleel, which was the son of Cainan, 38 Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God. If you dismiss the first eleven chapters of Genesis as poetry, and not authentic, factual, true history, you are forced to do the same with these three verses from the third chapter of Luke for they record the lineage of Christ as going through these men as if they were real and factual persons living in real and factual history. Of course, Dr. Luke also records the words of Jesus (Lu. 17:26-27) in which Noah is mentioned two times.
Ezekiel, Isaiah, Peter, Paul, Luke, Matthew, and Jesus all needed the focus of Dr. Dobson on their narration of history. He could have taught them some things, such as "the first eleven chapters of Genesis" are "poetry, not factual history." This way, they would not have recorded as factual history that which is mere non-factual, spurious poetry.
It is no wonder that Dr. Dobson substitutes Freudian psychology in the place of the word of God. If one believes the first eleven chapters of the Bible are spurious, how could he have unquestioning faith in the remainder of the word of God. Perhaps that explains a statement made in one of his films, "Children come with no instructions . . . you have to kind of assemble them on your own" (Power in Parenting: The Young Child). I guess all the instructions on child raising the Bible are spurious and not true or dependable. God does give some pretty clear instructions on child raising as any serious student of the word knows. John 8:47 He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God. He does not cast them aside for his own psychological babblings and "christianized evolution".
C. H. Spurgeon wrote, "If we doubt Gods Word about one thing, we shall have small confidence in it upon another thing. Since faith in God must treat all Gods Word alike; for the faith which accepts one word of God, and rejects another, is evidently not faith in God, but faith in our own judgment, faith in our own taste" (Quoted by A. W. Pink). When Dr. Dobson says the first eleven chapters of God's word are not factual history, he is, in essence, saying he does not believe what is recorded there. If he does not believe the historical facts set forth in those eleven chapters, how can he believe any of the Bible to be the word of God. He is simply trusting his own judgment to tell him what he should or should not believe. Spurgeon also said, ". . . the act of disbelieving God about one point will drive you to disbelieve Him upon the other parts of revealed truth, and you will never come to that true, childlike faith which God will accept and honor." Again he said, "If I did not believe in the infallibility of the Book, I would rather be without it. If I am to judge the Book, it is no judge of me. If I am to sift it, like the heap on the threshing-floor, and lay this aside and only accept that, according to my own judgment, then I have no guidance whatever, unless I have conceit enough to trust to my own heart" (MTP, Vol. 35, P. 257). Those who would defend Dobson, and Promise Keepers' close alignment with him, should think long and well on these words of Spurgeon. Frankly, I do not want a man who believes he can judge the word of God and say what is factual and what is not focusing on my family or on the church I pastor.
Is James Dobson an infidel? According to my Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary an infidel is "disbeliever in something specified or understood." In the light of Dobson's disbelief of the accuracy and authenticity of the historical accounts found in the first eleven chapters of Genesis, I would venture to say he qualifies to be classified as an infidel. Yet, we are accused of hatred for exposing such infidelity.
Last month I mentioned Dobsons absurd and blasphemous notion that we should forgive God. In his 1993 book, When God Doesnt Make Sense, he wrote, "I am suggesting that some of us need to forgive God for those heartaches that are charged to His account." This is pure and unadulterated blasphemy. Yet, when we warn folks about such blasphemy, some would accuse us of hatred.
Dobson often affirms things that are contrary to the word of God. And God says, "If they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them." John 8:47 He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.
IS THIS HATRED?
Jude 3-4 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.
When Jude was moved by the Holy Spirit to write his short epistle, it was his desire to write concerning the common salvation. But, because of their circumstances and the false teachers around them, it was necessary that he write and exhort them to earnestly contend for the faith once delivered to the saints. This necessity was caused by some false teachers that had crept in among them. They were posing as Christians and ministers of Christ when in truth they were reprobatesmen who were before of old ordained to condemnation.
The word contend means, "to struggle in opposition; to strive in rivalry; compete; vie; to strive in debate; dispute earnestly; to assert and maintain earnestly." The Greek word is epagwnizesqai. It is from the root agon which means to contend. With the added epi it means to strongly strive in contention, in this case for the faith once delivered to the saints. This strong striving would be with the false teachers who had slyly slipped into the number and were teaching doctrines that turned grace into lasciviousness.
Keep in mind that these folks were professing to be Christians. They were apparently preachers. But Jude declares them to be ungodly men. Does Jude manifest hatred when he speaks so harshly of these folks? He goes on to compare them to the angels which rebelled under the leadership of Lucifer. He also compares them to the people of Sodom and Gomorrah. In verse 8 they are filthy dreamers who defile the flesh, despise government (dominion), and speak evil of dignities. In verse 10 he compares them to brute beasts. Then read his description of them in the following verses. Jude 11-13 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core. These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots; Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.
In his exposure of false teachers Jude makes no attempt to sugar-coat his message. He rounds no corners but is very pointed. There is no velvet in his mouth when he speaks. If he were writing today, I am sure many would accuse him of hatred. Was it hatred? Or, was it love of the truth and love for those to whom he was writing that provoked his strong denunciation of these professing Christians who had privily brought in damnable heresy?
Jude and Peter were very similar in their approach to those who were false teachers. Peter was very strong in his denunciation of false teachers who came in among Christians as Christians. 2 Peter 2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
The reader is encouraged to read the entire second chapter of Second Peter. Here in verse one he calls these "Christian brethren" false prophets. He declares their teachings are damnable heresies. He warns that they are headed to destruction. In verse 2, he characterizes their ways (which could include their ways of worship) to be pernicious ways. Strongs Lexicon defines this word pernicious as follows. 1) destroying, utter destruction 1a) of vessels 2) a perishing, ruin, destruction 2a) of money 2b) the destruction which consists of eternal misery in hell. It was the contention of Peter that these false prophets naming the name of Christ and working their way in among these people of God had ways that would lead to eternal misery in hell.
In verse 3 he warns that they will make merchandise of these true Christians if they were not careful. And then he adds that the damnation of these false teachers does not slumber. In verse 10 Peter says these false prophets are presumptuous and self-willed. And in verse 12 he likens them to brute beasts who are made to be taken and destroyed who shall utterly perish in their own corruption.
Some of our readers would accuse Peter of hate. They would rebuke him for criticizing the way these people act and worship. Was this hatred? I suggest to you it was a love of truth and a love of those to whom he wrote that was behind his writing. Of course, the Holy Spirit inspired him to do so. Will the lovers and defenders of PKs also accuse the blessed Holy Spirit of hatred? I am sure they will make allowances for Peter and the Holy Spirit, but not for this editor who writes to warn of this unscriptural movement out of a love for truth and a love for those to whom I write. As already shown, part of the work of a good minister of Jesus Christ is the exposure of error.
IS THIS HATRED?
Matthew 24:24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
How much like genuine and true Christians and preachers of the gospel these must appear. The come showing great signs and wonders and are so convincing that, were it possible, they would deceive the very elect. Many professing Christians are being seduced into the Promise Keepers camp. Many claim this is a genuine and godly movement. Then, I ask, "Where has it been for the last 1900+ years? During his ministry, Jesus established his church and the apostles and others established other churches out of that one. Jesus promised that church and its kind a perpetual existence. Matthew 16:18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. I do not need history; I do not need church minutes to tell me that somewhere in this world there are churches descended from that first church. Jesus promised it and he does not and cannot lie.
What of Promise Keepers? This organization was born in 1992. It was "spawned" out of the radical and very unscriptural Vineyard fellowship. It was founded by men. It is run by men, many of whom claim to get their directions directly from God, not from his word. They do not speak according to his word. They teach for doctrines the commandments and psychological babblings of men. It is not hatred of those men that causes me to expose their error; I have a deep love for the word of God that causes me to write as I do. I have a passionate love for the Lord Jesus Christ and when men attack his sinless nature, as does Robert Hicks, I do not speak or write with velvet in my mount to soften what I say. Isaiah 58:1 Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.
THIS IS HATRED!
Psalm 119:104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way. Psalm 119:128 Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way.
One who loves the word of God will hate every false way. I have set forth the false way of James Dobson and every lover of God and his word should hate it. If the foundation of the first eleven chapters of Genesis be destroyed, one may as well discard the rest. The idea that the first eleven chapters are not true, factual, authentic history is a false way that I confess I hate. The idea that we should forgive the sovereign, holy, immutable, righteous, just God of heaven for anything is a false way and I confess I hate that false way.
Robert Hicks, who is also closely aligned with Promise Keepers, says that the One whom I trust for my salvation was a "phallic kind of guy." That is a false way which I confess I hate. He also suggests that Jesus had thoughts of committing adultery, fornication, and homosexual acts. That is a blasphemous, false way. I hate it. Hicks also declared that we need to celebrate sin. That is a false way and is contrary to the Word of God. It is a way I hate. Hicks bemoaned the fact that preachers do not preach about the use of the phallus. He thinks that ought to be done along side the gospel, Jesus Christ, and other precious doctrines. That is a false way. And, yes, Dear Readers, I hate that false way.
The leaders of Promise Keepers condone and promote what these men teach. They gave 50,000 copies of Hicks book away. They helped to publish it. They defended it. They promoted it and continue to do so. Therefore, I hate the way of the Promise Keepers. Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed? Their close association with these men indicates agreement with them and others with whom we will deal in a future report. Their walking together with them indicates their agreement for two cannot walk together in such matters except they be agreed.
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