Saturday, July 30, 2011

Norway Terrorist Proclaimed Himself Darwinian, Not Christian

Article courtesy of World Net Daily:

WASHINGTON – A review of Anders Behring Breivik's 1,500-page manifesto shows the media's quick characterization of the Norwegian terrorist as a "Christian" may be as incorrect as it was to call Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh one.

Breivik was arrested over the weekend, charged with a pair of brutal attacks in and near Oslo, Norway, including a bombing in the capital city that killed 7 and a shooting spree at a youth political retreat on the island of Utoya that killed more than 80 victims.

Piecing together Breivik's various posts on the Internet, many media reports have characterized the terrorist – who says he was upset over the multiculturalist policies stemming from Norway's Labour Party – as a "right-wing, Christian fundamentalist."

Yet, while McVeigh rejected God altogether, Breivik writes in his manifesto that he is not religious, has doubts about God's existence, does not pray, but does assert the primacy of Europe's "Christian culture" as well as his own pagan Nordic culture.

Breivik instead hails Charles Darwin, whose evolutionary theories stand in contrast to the claims of the Bible, and affirms: "As for the Church and science, it is essential that science takes an undisputed precedence over biblical teachings. Europe has always been the cradle of science, and it must always continue to be that way. Regarding my personal relationship with God, I guess I'm not an excessively religious man. I am first and foremost a man of logic. However, I am a supporter of a monocultural Christian Europe."

The terrorist also candidly admits he finds no support within either the Catholic or Protestant churches for his violent ideas.

"I trust that the future leadership of a European cultural conservative hegemony in Europe will ensure that the current Church leadership are replaced and the systems somewhat reformed," he writes. "We must have a Church leadership who supports a future Crusade with the intention of liberating the Balkans, Anatolia and creating three Christian states in the Middle East. Efforts should be made to facilitate the de-construction of the Protestant Church whose members should convert back to Catholicism. The Protestant Church had an important role once, but its original goals have been accomplished and have contributed to reform the Catholic Church as well. Europe should have a united Church lead [sic] by a just and non-suicidal pope who is willing to fight for the security of his subjects, especially in regards to Islamic atrocities."

While Breivik says he considers himself "100-percent Christian," he also expresses pride in his genealogical roots.

"I am very proud of my Viking heritage," he writes. "My name, Breivik, is a location name from northern Norway, and can be dated back to even before the Viking era. Behring is a pre-Christian Germanic name, which is derived from Behr, the Germanic word for Bear (or 'those who are protected by the bear')."

And while characterizing himself as "Christian" and "Protestant," Breivik says he supports "a reformation of Protestantism leading to it being absorbed by Catholisism." [sic]

Likewise, media reports frequently characterized McVeigh as a "Christian," though he adamantly denied any religious beliefs or convictions – placing his faith in science.

Breivik adds, "I went from moderately agnostic to moderately religious."

In a question-and-answer section of his manifesto, Breivik asks himself, "What should be our civilisational [sic] objectives, how do you envision a perfect Europe?"

His answer is hardly the response of a "Christian utopian": "'Logic' and rationalist thought (a certain degree of national Darwinism) should be the fundament [sic] of our societies. I support the propagation of collective rational thought but not necessarily on a personal level."

Religious worship and study is never noted in the manifesto as part of Breivik's routine in preparing for his mission of mass murder. In discussing his preparation for the attack, he writes: "It has been a long-term process since I first decided I wanted to contribute. But it's not like I have been isolated for years. I have almost lived a normal life up until now. I still have a close relationship with my friends and family, just not as tight as it used to be. As for my current situation, I have been working on this book now for almost two years. It's essential that you reward yourself and enjoy life in this period. You can do things you normally wouldn't have done. You can basically live a normal life if you chose to; you just have to be extra careful. I have been practising [sic] certain rituals and meditation to strengthen my beliefs and convictions. For me, the most common ritual is taking a long walk listening to my favourite [sic] music on my iPod."

Breivik also points out that his association with Christian cultural values is one of political expedience rather than religious commitment or faith

"My choice has nothing to do with the fact that I am not proud of my own traditions and heritage," he explains. "My choice was based purely pragmatism. All Europeans are in this boat together, so we must choose a more moderate platform that can appeal to a great number of Europeans – preferably up to 50 percent (realistically up to 35 percent)."

Breivik also claims membership in the Freemasons, which many Christians consider to be a cultic organization. More specifically, he calls himself a Justiciar Knight and explains what that means insofar as belief in Christianity:

"As this is a cultural war, our definition of being a Christian does not necessarily constitute that you are required to have a personal relationship with God or Jesus," he writes. "Being a Christian can mean many things; That you believe in and want to protect Europe's Christian cultural heritage. The European cultural heritage, our norms (moral codes and social structures included), our traditions and our modern political systems are based on Christianity – Protestantism, Catholicism, Orthodox Christianity and the legacy of the European enlightenment (reason is the primary source and legitimacy for authority). It is not required that you have a personal relationship with God or Jesus in order to fight for our Christian cultural heritage and the European way. In many ways, our modern societies and European secularism is a result of European Christendom and the enlightenment. It is therefore essential to understand the difference between a 'Christian fundamentalist theocracy' (everything we do not want) and a secular European society based on our Christian cultural heritage (what we do want). So no, you don't need to have a personal relationship with God or Jesus to fight for our Christian cultural heritage. It is enough that you are a Christian-agnostic or a Christian atheist (an atheist who wants to preserve at least the basics of the European Christian cultural legacy (Christian holidays, Christmas and Easter)). The PCCTS, Knights Templar is therefore not a religious organisation [sic] but rather a Christian 'culturalist' military order."

Over and over again, Breivik goes out of his way to make clear to readers of his manifesto that he is not motivated by Christian faith.

"I'm not going to pretend I'm a very religious person, as that would be a lie," he says. "I've always been very pragmatic and influenced by my secular surroundings and environment. In the past, I remember I used to think: 'Religion is a crutch for weak people. What is the point in believing in a higher power if you have confidence in yourself!? Pathetic.' Perhaps this is true for many cases. Religion is a crutch for many weak people, and many embrace religion for self-serving reasons as a source for drawing mental strength (to feed their weak emotional state [for] example during illness, death, poverty etc.). Since I am not a hypocrite, I'll say directly that this is my agenda as well. However, I have not yet felt the need to ask God for strength, yet."

Friday, July 29, 2011


We are now into the last day of the conference and it has been a tumultuous experience for many of us. In a culture awash with feminist ideology, therapeutic psychology, and a Darwinian view of man, it is inevitable that an uncompromising biblical worldview will pose a vicious assault on those long held ideologies. And to say that Voddie Baucham's preaching is uncompromising would be to understate the obvious. Scandinavians tend to be people not prone to open outbursts of emotion and as such it can be difficult to discern the effect of the teaching at this conference on many of the attendees. But it has been definitely provocative to see these people exposed to an unyielding, uncompromised, and well developed biblical worldview on subjects like biblical manhood, biblical womanhood, male headship, and the discipline of children.

The challenge here is that this proclamation will lead to penetration and application (and no, I did not go to the Rick Warren School of Alliteration). When a Scandinavian person comes to saving faith or a proper understanding of the Gospel, there still remains the quantum leap of developing a biblical worldview and then applying it. It is for this reason that I am so pleased that I invited Dr Baucham to come and confront these idealogical strongholds.

The last two days of this conference have swept us through Ephesians chapters five and six. It is here that we are brought face to face with the realities of God's call on husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the Church, and on wives to submit to their husbands as unto Christ. To not only preach these truths, but to preach them forcefully and unflinchingly had a provocative impact on many people. And provocation was very necessary. Equally, if not more, bold was Voddie Baucham's unyielding call on all parents to disciple their children instead of the state, and to discipline them with biblical means (yes, including spanking) instead of psychological methods.

In all of this, the reality is that these truths all stem from the Gospel and flow back into it. Psychology, at it's core, is a denial of human depravity and thus does violence to the Gospel. Undermining male headship in marriage ultimately undermines the Gospel because it horribly mars the beautiful picture of Christ's sacrificial love for His Church, and the Church's devotion to Christ. These things all matter because they are all so vitally connected to the precious once for all delved Gospel.

And since I don't have a notebook, I will make a note here on my blog to take Voddie's advice and get the following book from the middle eighteen hundreds called "Thoughts on Family Worship" by James Alexander for the discipleship of my children. Gotta run . . .

Oh, one more thing, we recorded everything, so we hope to post some of the meetings online as soon as possible.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Well, the conference is well and truly underway now. This is a special conference in Europe because it is Gospel centered and theologically driven - in stark contrast to most of the other "Christian" conferences which tend to be driveby pragmatism and the latest 40 days of your best prayer of jabez trend coming out of America which is usually 2 years behind the USA which, in turn, is usually 15 years behind the secular culture.

One of the true highlights so far has been the Tabletalk question and answer sessions each night. A predominant feature of the Scandinavian church landscape is a propensity of pastors to refuse to discuss matters over Scripture, and also a severe reluctance to respond to questions that they don't like being asked. I call these "Areea 51" questions. But the Tabletalk sessions at Reformation Resurrection 2011 have been loaded with a barrage of questions, many of which would qualify as "Area 51" questions. Nothing has been off limits and Voddie Baucham is an outstanding apologist who, thus far, has been very able to draw on Scripture to answer all questions heading his way without diplomacy and political correctness. Needless to say, everyone has been on the edge of their seats the whole way through and we are very glad that we decided to record these sessions.

But the main emphasis of this year's conference has been Dr Baucham's exegetical sweep through Paul's letter to the Ephesians. This has been a profound and illuminating experience for so many of us who have had little, if any, exposure to quality expository preaching. It also makes for an invigorating change from the mire of lame moralistic sermons where the Scripture serves as a selective tool to support an agenda that many modern preachers start with.

The thread through all of this biblical exposition by Voddie Baucham has been the the centrality of Christ in all of Scripture. He is helping us all to see the transcendent story of Scripture that is the seamless story of Christ - not a massive sequence of different moral lessons for self improvement. Gotta go! I don't want to miss the next session.

And he [Jesus] said to them, "O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?" And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself. (Luke 24:25-27)

Monday, July 25, 2011


The Reformation Resurrection 2011 conference starts here tomorrow in Denmark (click here for all the conference details) and it is an event of immense significance for those of us living among the ruins of the 16th century reformers. I have already discussed the perils of failing to teach history, more specifically the Sovereign Hand of God throughout history. But what even transcends this and flows out from it is the truth that Luther declared before the Pope:

Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason – I do not accept the authority of popes and councils, for they have contradicted each other – my conscience is captive to the Word of God . . . . Here I stand. I cannot do otherwise. (Imperial Diet at Worms, 1521)

It is not in the power of the Roman pontiff or of the Inquisition to construct new articles of faith. No believing Christian can be coerced beyond holy writ. By divine law we are forbidden to believe anything which is not established by divine Scripture or manifest revelation. (Leipzig debate with the Catholic Johann Eck, 1519)

It is difficult to think of anything more important for Denmark than a call for the many apostate ministers to abandon their pulpits or repent and be men "who rightly divide the word of truth" (2 Timothy 2:15). When you have the collective evangelical coalition of Denmark (Frikirkenet) combining their theological insights to come up with the stunningly stupid and brazenly false assertion that Scripture says nothing against fornication, then it highlights the need to stand with Luther and align our worldview to the clear teaching of Scripture - instead of aligning Scripture to a carnal worldview.

It is this Scripture, the Holy Bible, that clearly spells out the One True Gospel that the reformers fought to recover and gave their lives to defend. How dare we, who profess Christ in this hour, go to sleep on our watch. We are called to contend for the once for all delivered faith (Jude 3) and "mark" all false teachers who teach doctrine contrary to that taught in Scripture (Romans 16:17). Paul tells Titus of the need for shepherds to:

Hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it. (Titus 1:9)

We in Denmark are amidst an irreversible catastrophe with horrific eternal consequences. And the sooner this reality is faced by Danish believers the sooner they will drop their white flags of pacifism and enlist as soldiers of Jesus Christ ready to contend for this glorious once for all delivered Gospel. With that in mind, I could not think of anyone better to come and minister to us than Voddie Baucham. An apologist who is hostile and combative to the prevailing worldviews that so many cower in fear to. Someone once asked me to describe Voddie Baucham and I coined the phrase "an apologetics bulldozer". May God bless this intense time of reformation resurrection as Dr Baucham ministers.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Just Added - Can I Be Sure I'm Saved

RC Sproul's short but excellent book on assurance has just been added to my resource directory.

R C Sproul

Category: Apologetics
Click Here To Order
Many people in the church today are plagued by doubts about their salvation. Satan whispers that it is impossible that sinners such as they could be in a state of grace, and some churches compound the problem by teaching that it is possible for believers to lose their salvation. But assurance of salvation is possible in this life. Indeed, as Dr. R.C. Sproul argues in this Crucial Questions booklet, it is the duty of Christians to make their calling sure (2 Peter 1:10). To help believers reach this goal, Dr. Sproul defines assurance, shows how we can get it, reveals the blessings it confers, and warns of the dangers of false assurance. Here is assistance for those who struggle to know where they stand with Jesus Christ.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Is Anywhere Immune From Terrorism?

Many of us have been shocked at today's news of (what seems to be) a terror attack on Oslo, the capital of neighboring Norway. For this reason I thought it appropriate to postpone the next installment of my series on Jude until two weeks from today.

Living in Scandinavia can make you feel far removed from the world of Islamic terrorism. Scandinavians tend to be a passive bunch who go to great lengths not to make enemies which adds to the shock of today's revelations. According to BBC world news:

Norway has been hit by twin attacks - a massive bomb blast in the capital and a shooting attack on young people at a governing Labour Party youth camp. At least seven people were killed in the bombing, which inflicted huge damage on government buildings in Oslo city centre. Four more died at the camp, on an island outside Oslo, local media said. One witness later said he had seen more than 20 bodies on the island, but police have not confirmed this. Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, whose Oslo offices were among those damaged by the bomb, described the situation as "very serious". Norwegian media reports said the shootings on the island were carried out by a man in police uniform. Police said the suspected gunman had been arrested, and later said he was also linked with the bomb attack, reports said. No group has said it carried out the attacks.

The feeling of safety and security this side of eternity can be a dangerous thing. It can quench our conscience from pondering the conviction we may otherwise feel over the conflict between our inner morality and our outward actions. The people of Norway and Scandinavia now know that terrorism is a very real possibility in their lives and the relative safety felt here may well have become a thing of the past. But while terror attacks become more probable, the judgment and wrath of God remain absolute certainties for all found wanting in the scales of God's justice - scales that demand perfection. May God open our eyes to this urgency and reality!

Fear can be a good thing, particularly if it involves fearing the God Who made us and owns us and knows us and will judge us. And there is only one embassy we can run to where we can find "diplomatic immunity" from the wrath to come. His Name is the Lord Jesus Christ - God incarnate who paid the debt we can never pay to give the gift that we can never earn. Jesus Christ bore the wrath of God on the cross in the place of all sinners who ultimately find their refuge in Him. May we pray for the victims and their families in Norway right now, and more than that, pray for their eyes to be opened to their need for eternal security. Terrorism is a very real possibility, but our day in God's court is an absolute certainty. May we be found in the embassy of Jesus Christ on that day.

There were some present at that very time who told him [Jesus] about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he [Jesus] answered them, "Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish." (Luke 13:1-5)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Why Denmark Needs A Reformation Resurrection - My Life In Denmark (Part 20)

My previous post served as a shocking example of the apostate catastrophe that has happened in Denmark (and much of western Europe for that matter). With our annual Reformation Resurrection conference now less than a week away I thought it timely to revisit the heartbeat of the Back To Scripture ministry which I started with a handful of friends less than three short years ago.

Ray Comfort once wisely stated that "the only thing we learn from history is that we don't learn from history" and that is the tragic tale most particularly of the ultra liberal "Lutheran churches" that dominate the sparse "church landscape" of Denmark. I was invited to speak (for reasons still not fully known) at a Lutheran camp last year (click here to hear the sermon) and quizzed one of the leaders about the general knowledge of Luther and his heritage among attenders. This particular leader said "they don't know very much at all but I do know about his 81 Theses". I thanked him for such a clear assessment of their historical knowledge and kindly reminded him about the other 14 theses!

Luther's hammer rings throughout history as perhaps the most significant event in the last millennium. When those 95 theses were nailed to the door of the church in Wittenberg it was the initial shot fired in a theological war that ultimately dragged Europe out of the dark ages, the Gospel out of the evil works righteous clutches of Rome, and the Scriptures out of Latin obfuscation into the common language (what is also historic here is my use of the word obfuscation - is anybody impressed?). Every great thing western Europeans enjoy today finds its roots in the great reformation. Literacy, science, medicine, art, music, free speech, and free enterprise all exploded from that reformation fuse. Furthermore, Gospel preaching flourished and societal stability benefitted enormously from biblical literacy and the Christ centered view of the family unit. The printing press emerged at this time in the providence of God which meant that widely circulated copies of the New Testament (and later the whole Canon) became the foundation on which widespread literacy thrived among the common people. But Europe marches on oblivious to the great reformation legacy of which they are the beneficiaries, seemingly hell-bent on destroying it. Not only is history neglected and buried under historical revisionism, it is the knowledge of history that holds the answers to the (possibly) terminal decline of these nations. History is His Story and a failure to see the Sovereign Hand of God orchestrating all events for His glory is a failure to understand the present and our need for the Gospel.

When I first read the Bible I approached it with the moralistic semi-pelagian mindset that I had learnt from life and the stinker church that I was attending. This really became a huge problem when I worked my way through the book of Judges. My moralism approached the Bible the way I watched a movie - every story has a hero and a villain so find out who they are and learn a valuable moral lesson which I can then use to improve myself as a person. The problem with the book of Judges, particularly in the last several chapters, was that it became an endless succession of tragic stories with no happy ending and no clearly discernible "good guys". What was I to do with the book of Judges? Well, the moral of the story in the book of Judges is found in the very last verse which happens to be a repeat of something that had already been mentioned several times:

In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes. (Judges 21:25)

Judges is a tale of woe about a nation full of villains who abandon the only true hero of Scripture - God! What became even more interesting to me was when I backtracked through Judges to find the threshold Israel crossed when everything started going south in a hurry. And this stood out like a beacon in chapter 2:

And the people served the LORD all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua, who had seen all the great work that the LORD had done for Israel. And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of the LORD, died at the age of 110 years. And they buried him within the boundaries of his inheritance in Timnath-heres, in the hill country of Ephraim, north of the mountain of Gaash. And all that generation also were gathered to their fathers. And there arose another generation after them who did not know the LORD or the work that he had done for Israel. (Judges 2:7-10 emphasis mine)

Pay particular note to the highlighted part. Israel failed to teach history to the next generation. A failure to do this is a deadly exercise that leaves a civilization blind, depraved, abandoned and condemned as revealed in what followed verse 10:

And the people of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the LORD and served the Baals. And they abandoned the LORD, the God of their fathers, who had brought them out of the land of Egypt. They went after other gods, from among the gods of the peoples who were around them, and bowed down to them. And they provoked the LORD to anger. They abandoned the LORD and served the Baals and the Ashtaroth. So the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he gave them over to plunderers, who plundered them. And he sold them into the hand of their surrounding enemies, so that they could no longer withstand their enemies. Whenever they marched out, the hand of the LORD was against them for harm, as the LORD had warned, and as the LORD had sworn to them. And they were in terrible distress. (Judges 2:11-15)

Which brings us back to modern day Denmark! Reformation Resurrection 2011 is a response to the recognition that the wrath of God is being revealed in this land (Romans 1:18-32) and that another reformation is the only hope. Moreover, not a new reformation but a resurrection of the old one as a foundation from which to build upon. Luther and the other reformers had a latin phrase that they often referred to:

Ecclesia semper reformanda est

A phrase which means the church reformed and always reforming. Many criticisms get leveled at the reformers, most of them are nonsense but some of them are legitimate. Rather than writing the whole movement off, we would do well to remember "semper reformanda". We would do well to remember what they reformed from and be thankful for their recovery of the Gospel. Do we really expect them to rectify every aberration after the darkness they had come out of? We have more light because of their labor so we have responsibility to continue what they started. As Paul Washer said, we all stand on Luther's shoulders!

The only solution is to preach this Gospel pure and undefiled as it is clearly laid out in Holy Scripture - the sole authority of the reformers and a radical departure from the Roman substitutes of popes, traditions, and idols. We should march forward building upon this reformation foundation just as it was built upon the plain teaching of Scripture. Like I said Semper Reformanda. Please join us!

Go Back To Part 19
Go Back To Part 1

Monday, July 18, 2011

Frikirkenet Is A Danish Disgrace - My Life In Denmark (Part 19)

Last year I discussed the pathetic and embarrassing Danish coalition of "evangelical churches" called Frikirkenet (the post can be viewed here). Yes, the people who labelled this outstanding witnessing video as "an embarrassment" (my apologies that the english subtitles seem to have been removed from the video), and the leadership experts who hired a new age philosopher to train their pastors, have now put on a stunning display of their gross biblical incompetence and immense stupidity. It would all be hysterically funny if it was not so tragic and hostile to true Christianity in Denmark. In the latest edition of their magazine "Domino" they decided to impart this amazing biblical insight to their readers - that they could not find anywhere in the Bible where sex before marriage is forbidden!!!! Frikirkenet was not endorsing fornication, they were just saying that it is a bad idea but we have no biblical support for this assertion. The Danish readers can view the article here.

When Paul says to the Corinthians that no fornicator will inherit the Kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10) he is not exactly giving his approval for the practice! Not only is Frikirkenet's statement a frighteningly dangerous message to send to hormonal teenagers (many of whom are already heavily immersed in this lifestyle), it is also an absolutely absurd display of biblical illiteracy and incompetence. And if someone wants to argue about the Greek word "porneia" not necessarily meaning fornication then they should take a look at Jesus' warning in Matthew 5:28 where he goes so far as to liken lustful thoughts to adultery. Does anyone really think they can extend that theology and come to see fornication as something that is not sinful.

Possibly more tragic than all of this, is the fact that accommodating something that is sinful actually hinders the God's holy law from doing its convicting work, and driving the fearful sinner to the Savior. A sinless Savior Who substituted for fornicators when He died on the cross taking the punishment that they deserve and granting them the righteousness that they never earned. The beautiful Gospel gets lost in all of this!

Those of you in Frikirkenet need to either repent of your opposition to the Gospel and the authority of Scripture, or severely rebuke those who are responsible for their sewer of bad theology, or abandon this movement entirely. Those of you in Frikirkenet who do treasure the Lord Jesus Christ need to "man up" and voice your opposition. Please remove all financial support for such a pathetic and ungodly organization because Frikirkenet does nothing but harm the furtherance of the Gospel in Denmark. I am disgusted!

Go On To Part 20
Go Back To Part 18
Go Back To Part 1

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Just Added - The Reformed Doctrine Of Predestination

This classic work by renowned reformed theologian Loraine Boettner, has just been added to the resource directory.

Loraine Boettner

Category: Theology
Click Here To Order
This book explains clearly that God is 100% sovereign and accomplishes what He purposed before the world was made. People will allow God to be sovereign in everything but the affairs of man, especially in salvation. This book refutes point by point the arguments against the absolute sovereignty of God. Any Christian should be required to read this book before entering into debate concerning God's dealings with sinful mankind. Boettner sets out explaining the doctrine and then in section III he takes on the obvious objections to the doctrine.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Exposing And Expelling Heretics (Part 4)

Today we continue on our expository journey through the Epistle of Jude. Jude represents the first expository assignment I have been tasked with in our church plant in Denmark - Kristuskirken. Though short in length, Jude is a letter jam packed with information on why we should hunt down false teachers that conceal themselves in the church, how we should identify them, and that we as Christians should go to war against them secure in the knowledge of being kept in the safety of God's preserving grace. Much of the credit for this series must go to John MacArthur whose teaching on this Epistle has been my major source.

1 Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James, To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ: 2 May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you. 3 Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. 4 For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. (Jude 1-4)

Jude wanted to comfort the true believers before he called them to fight a truth war against the false teachers who were among them. And he comforted them with the doctrine of election. Yes the doctrine that many people hate is the doctrine that Jude appeals to when he wants to comfort the true believers in the Father’s love.

To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ. (Jude 1b)

Those that the Father calls, He loves. Those that He loves, he keeps. If it was up to us we would fall away.

All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. (John 6:37)

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. I and the Father are one." The Jews picked up stones again to stone him. (John 10:27-31)

As we can see, the Pharisees didn’t like election either. Some people argue that teaching this security is too much comfort. That it promotes freedom to sin. Is that the case? Teaching "once saved always saved" is not the problem. The problem these people have is a wrong understanding of conversion. Of the miraculous nature of conversion where God takes out our heart of stone and gives us a heart of flesh and causes us to walk in obedience to his laws. That’s why we have the story of the sheep and the goats. Because the works of the sheep did not earn them God’s favor, it demonstrated God’s transforming work in their lives. Our eternities rest completely in the finished work of our righteous substitute – Jesus Christ. What about free will? Unless God saves us and changes us then our free will, will always freely choose rebellion against God.

God’s church, the bride of Christ is beloved and precious to Him. It is difficult to discuss this in a therapeutic self-esteem society where we love ourselves so much. But if we understand our sinfulness and unworthiness then we have some context for how loved we are by God.

But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)

Well where is God when life is hard? Go forward to Romans chapter 8:

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)

Now most of us know that verse but what comes after? Remember that Jude comforted the believers that those who God calls, He loves, and those who he loves He keeps:

For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified. What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died-more than that, who was raised-who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?As it is written, "For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered." No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:29-39)

Because Jude has experienced God’s great love he is able to express his love for his audience:

May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you. (Jude 2)

As we go in to verse 3 we see that Jude’s call to fight false teachers was driven by his deep love for God and His church and His Gospel:

Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. (Jude 3)

Jude’s desire was to write to them about their common salvation – it is a common salvation. Christianity does not have a class structure. But what Jude is about to show is that it does have imposters, pretenders, and fakes. He could have warned about the lions in the coliseum but he was saying the greatest danger was from the inside. This common salvation was once for all delivered by Christ. There is One God, one Gospel, One Savior, one way. Don’t let people ever say to you that they think Jesus is one of many good teachers alongside Mohammed and Buddha and Gandhi. Paul said that:

The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead." (Acts 17:30-31)

Luke said there is no other Name given under heaven by which all men must be saved (Acts 4:12). Jesus said I am the way the truth and the life (John 14:6) and there is no other way – everyone else is wrong! (Not very postmodern, that Jesus.) These people who claim that Jesus is one of several or many ways should at least have the integrity and courage to either reject Jesus as a false teacher or reject everyone else and embrace Him as the only True Savior. There is no middle ground with Jesus. This once for all delivered faith is worth fighting for and Jude is calling the church onto the battlefield. This Gospel is so sacred it leaves no room for alternatives, no room for change, no room for expansion, and no room for adjustment.

“We do what we can and Jesus does what we can’t” – wrong get out from among us! This One Gospel is for people who see that there is nothing they can do.

“God helps those who help themselves” – wrong get out! This One Gospel is for helpless people.

“Salvation is by grace alone through faith alone . . . but you have to get baptized first” – wrong get out! This One Gospel is 100% delivered.

“You are saved by trusting in Jesus Christ alone, and then you maintain your salvation through your works” – wrong get out NT Wright!

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:8-10)

This once for all delivered faith is for hopeless, helpless, hell deserving sinners who realize that they can do nothing but look in repentance to a perfect, righteous, and merciful Savior to take the punishment that they deserve and give them His righteousness that they don’t deserve. If that was a job description – it would be describing the thief on the cross.

Have you ever noticed how many church leaders think that those who expose false teachers are unloving? Jude’s motive for writing here is love. What would you think of a doctor who told your mother that her health is fine when the scan revealed cancer? That doctor would get fired for malpractice. Any preacher who tells people that there is no hell and everyone is going to heaven should be forever banished from the pulpit for spiritual malpractice and sent out into the world in the hope that he might repent and get saved. I’ve heard it preached in churches in Denmark and I struggle to think of anything more evil and unloving than to preach a message that will damn people. Paul pronounces damnation on all those who preach any other Gospel (Galatians 1:8-9) than the one that was once for all delivered. We are in the business of life and death, heaven and hell, repent or perish. Should we expect anything less than a war? And this is not a place for those who get some cheap thrill out of tearing people down. It is for people like Jude who love God, love His truth, love His Gospel, and love His church. If you are unwilling to contend then you are unloving.

To be continued next Friday . . .

Go On To Part 5
Go Back To Part 3
Go Back To Part 1

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

REFORMATION RESURRECTION 2011 UPDATE - Onsite Accommodation Fully Booked

Reformation Resurrection 2011 in Denmark is now almost upon us. A lot of people have been getting blown away by watching Voddie Baucham on YouTube or downloading his sermons from Sermon Audio so there is a real buzz among the brethren over here.

Accommodation on the conference site is now fully booked so the following pricing arrangements now apply for those who still wish to attend the conference but can make other sleeping arrangements. (All other conference details can be found by clicking here.)

PRICE UPDATE 13 July 2011:
(Remember - all evening meetings and coffee are free!)

All Four Days
Adults: 400 Danish Kroner
Students: 250 Danish Kroner
Ages 0-6: Free
Ages 7-14: 150 Danish Kroner
Ages 15-20: 250 Danish Kroner

Day Visit
Adults: 200 Danish Kroner
Students: 150 Danish Kroner
Ages 0-6: Free
Ages 7-14: 50 Danish Kroner
Ages 15-20: 150 Danish Kroner
(Half Day is half price)

Any readers who wish to support/promote/attend this conference are most welcome to use this picture on their own websites/emails/facebook pages to help us get the word out. For simplicity, you can just save the picture below and then hyperlink it to this web address:

This conference is a rare chance for the brethren in Europe to gather and sit under excellent reformed preaching, build relationships, get opportunities to speak one on one with the keynote speaker, and get a much needed kick up the pants to contend earnestly for the once for all delivered faith. The Lord Jesus Christ is so worthy of our undivided attention and fervent labor and Reformation Resurrection 2011 will equip us for Europe's single greatest need - that the Gospel must thunder once again from pulpits in every corner of this continent. Click here for all the details.

Voddie Baucham describes himself as a cultural apologist. He explains what that means in the following short video:

Monday, July 11, 2011

Fixing Our Eyes On The Cross

I spent yesterday with a good friend who recently graduated from a major US seminary. Our conversation revealed major inadequacies in their training in soteriology which was greatly troubling since I was able to debunk them quite easily. Oh for more seminaries that would make the main thing the MAIN THING. John Wesley said "set yourself on fire and people will come to watch you burn". Also, the message/scandal of the cross never gets tired when we set ourselves on fire by preaching it . . .

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Just Added - The Reformed Faith

This excellent brief overview of reformed theology has just been added to the resource directory.

Loraine Boettner

Category: Theology
Click Here To Order
This is a succinct book which covers the basic tenets of the Reformed Christian Faith. The opening section affirms the sovereignty of God. The following sections cover the doctrine of total depravity and man's totally helpless condition as a sinner and his need for redemption in Christ Jesus. The subsequent sections address issues relating to soteriology (that is the doctrine of salvation) and it offers responses to passages of Scripture that supposedly give creedence to universal atonement and implications that man initiates his own salvation. The final section compares and contrasts the Reformed Faith with that of the Arminian creed.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Exposing And Expelling Heretics (Part 3)

Today we continue on our expository journey through the Epistle of Jude. Jude represents the first expository assignment I have been tasked with in our church plant in Denmark - Kristuskirken. Though short in length, Jude is a letter jam packed with information on why we should hunt down false teachers that conceal themselves in the church, how we should identify them, and that we as Christians should go to war against them secure in the knowledge of being kept in the safety of God's preserving grace. Much of the credit for this series must go to John MacArthur whose teaching on this Epistle has been my major source. This teaching is too vital not to post in this forum and I hope it will pour fuel on our fire to "contend earnestly for the once for all delivered faith".

1 Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James, To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ: 2 May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you. 3 Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. (Jude 1-3)

In verse three we hear Jude’s motivation for this letter. He wanted to write to the church about their common salvation but found it necessary to call them to war against the false teachers that were among them. Jude doesn’t get a kick out of exposing heretics. It is driven by his love for their common salvation, his love for the Gospel. Those of us who think we are in discernment ministries need to constantly check that we are driven out of a love for Christ and the salvation we find in Him.

We don’t know exactly which church it was written to and what their specific situation was but we know that it was probably written just before the destruction of Jerusalem in 70AD. This was a very dangerous time for the church. The Roman government was attacking the Christians from the outside and the Gnostic heretics were attacking the church from the inside. All of the Apostles except for John had been killed and the church was very vulnerable.

Jude was convicted that it was:

necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. (Jude 3b-4)

This is the war that we are called to and we will be exploring this in great detail as I continue through this little book in the coming weeks. But knowing what this book is about gives us the reason for what Jude wrote in the rest of verse one and verse two:

To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ: May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you. (Jude 1b-2)

As Jude speaks to the soldiers before they enter the battle he desires to comfort them with the wonderful doctrines of election and perseverance. Jude is telling them that if God has called them then they are loved by God. And if they are loved by God then God will keep them and keep them from being corrupted by these evil false teachers. He is echoing the words of Jesus when He said:

All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. (John 6:37)

One of the questions that is going to come to mind is this...if all this is going on in the church, if all this corruption and apostasy is escalating and escalating, is God really sovereign? Are things spiraling out of control because God really is not sovereign over all of this? And if that's the case then we might be engaging in this battle exposed to deadly things that could rob us of our salvation. But the fact that we are called, we are loved, we are kept, and we are blessed in the midst of an escalating apostasy, protects both the sovereignty of God and the security of believers. It's true that Apostasy does escalate and is dangerous. And that's why Jude begins by saying, "You have nothing to fear. You're the called, the loved, the kept and the blessed." That's how he begins the letter and look how he finishes off:

Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. (Jude 24-25)

Whatever is happening all around us, God is still running the whole universe and working all things together for His glory. This includes saving the worst of sinners. Jude is reminding the church that salvation is totally a work of God.

Are you going to heaven when you die? If you think you’ll go to heaven because of your baptism, or because you do good, or because God sees your heart - then you are deceived and headed for hell. God does see your heart and that is the problem. He not only sees your lying, and stealing, and blaspheming; he sees the thoughts of your heart. Jesus said that impure lustful thoughts are actually adultery of the heart (Matthew 5:27-28). The Bible concludes that all men are guilty before God, without excuse, and under God’s wrath (Romans 1:18-20). Do you agree with God about this? If you don’t get this then you will never understand the cross. CJ Mahaney says that:

You will never see the cross as something done for you until you see it as something done by you.

The cross was the place where Jesus who was fully God and fully man perfectly kept all of God’s laws that we have broken. He then suffered the wrath of God on the cross that we deserve. He takes our sins upon himself and credits his righteousness to our account. God treats Jesus as if he lived our life so that He can treat us as if we lived Jesus’ life. This way God can show His great love without being corrupt because his justice is satisfied. Jesus rose from the dead proving this was true and we know it was true because Jude repented of his sinful ways and put his faith in the one he had rejected. Jude is right, salvation is totally of God. It is His gracious gift that we receive by faith, it is the gift of God, not of works so that no one can boast (Ephesians 2:8-9). In the coming weeks as we hear Jude’s call to fight for the Gospel let us be comforted in the knowledge that Jude reminded his readers - if salvation is all of God, then our eternal preservation from corruption is also done by God.

To be continued next Friday . . .

Go On To Part 4
Go Back To Part 2
Go Back To Part 1

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

A Cavalcade Of Heretics - The Wild Goose Festival

The emergent movement still seems to think that there is plenty more life left in that rotting carcass. The movement may live on in the form of the heresies they propagated that have now infiltrated modern evangelical churches. But old liberalism continues to die the death of a thousand attempts at repackaging.

In the words of the "organizers":

The Wild Goose is a Celtic metaphor for the Holy Spirit. We are followers of Jesus creating a festival of justice, spirituality, music and the arts. The festival is rooted in the Christian tradition and therefore open to all regardless of belief, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, denomination or religious affiliation.

In adopting the image of the Wild Goose we recognize that in the current climate of religious, social and political cynicism, embracing the creative and open nature of our faith is perhaps our greatest asset for re-building and strengthening our relationships with each other, with our enemies, with our stories, our texts, and the earth. In that spirit, in a festive setting, and in the context of meaningful, respectful, and sustained relationships, we invite you to create with us!

As a child my favorite cartoon was the "League of Justice". It was the transcendent superhero cartoon where Superman, Batman, Aquaman, Spiderman, and Wonder Woman (yes, even then PC demanded a token woman and, let's face it, her invisible jet was a tremendous innovation in cutting costs). All these superheros were able to combine their superpowers for the ultimate force against all evil in the world.

The Wild Goose Festival is just like "League of Justice" except for the fighting evil part . . . and the superhero part . . . and the enjoyable part . . . Anyway, Wild Goose festival is what you get when you combine the apostate false teaching superpowers of Tony Jones, Jim Wallis, Jay Bakker, Brian McLaren, Shane Claiborne, Tony Campolo, Lynne Hybels, Frank Schaeffer, Phyliss Tickle, Richard Rohr etc into one giant potpourri of every imaginable religious idea apart from the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They may even try to outdo each other - maybe some new heresy might be birthed at Wild Goose.

(Sidenote: if the name Lynne Hybels (wife of Bill Hybels and "Willow Creek Advocate For Global Engagement") surprises you - don't be surprised. This woman is full of liberal kookiness so beware all you Willow Creek'ers who think that your fellowship is a safe haven. Lynne Hybels is not only seeker sensitive, she is very liberal on a lot of fronts - and very influential as well. Just check out her role as an inner circle counsellor to Barack Obama, her troubling association with radical leftist ministries like Sojourners and Red Letter Christians, and her ridiculous apologies to Islam.

The Wild Goose festival website carries the following bold prediction:

Wild Goose is going to grow into the largest, best run, most dynamic religious happening in the USA!

Here is a video highlight from the festival that lends so much credence to that bold prediction of a "dynamic", well organized, religious "happening" with teeming crowds. I would say that the word "religious" does apply to the Wild Goose festival . . . it's just that I can't quite make out what religion that would be!

Newsflash emergent gurus - whether your movement is dead or on life-support, Woodstock 2 is not the solution!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Martyn Lloyd-Jones Video Gold From The Archives

This is an awesome treasure that I was very surprised to find. A video documentary by Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones on the life of George Whitefield. One of the truly great preachers of the 20th century discusses the life of one of the greatest preachers ever. Anyone who watches this will enjoy a truly rare privilege!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Just Added - The Atonement

Loraine Boettner's short book on the Atonement has just been added to the resource directory.

Loraine Boettner

Category: Theology
Click Here To Order
The work of Christ in reconciling God and men we call the Atonement; and this doctrine, we believe, lies at the very heart of the Christian system. In the nature of the case we are altogether dependent on Scripture for our knowledge concerning this doctrine and can know only what God has seen fit to reveal concerning it. Human philosophy and speculation can contribute practically nothing toward its solution, and should be held in abeyance. This book was written to give a short systematized account of what the Scriptures teach concerning it, and to show that this fits in perfectly with the longings and aspirations of an enlightened spiritual nature.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Exposing And Expelling Heretics (Part 2)

Today we continue on from the previous post in this series where we began our expository journey through the Epistle of Jude. Jude represents the first expository assignment I have been tasked with in our church plant in Denmark - Kristuskirken. Though short in length, Jude is a letter jam packed with information on why we should hunt down false teachers that conceal themselves in the church, how we should identify them, and that we as Christians should go to war against them secure in the knowledge of being kept in the safety of God's preserving grace. Much of the credit for this series must go to John MacArthur whose teaching on this Epistle has been my major source. This teaching is too vital not to post in this forum and I hope it will pour fuel on our fire to "contend earnestly for the once for all delivered faith".

Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James, To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ (Jude 1).

We see in the first verse that this letter was written by Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James. Jude in the greek is translated Judas. It is interesting to know something about this guy. In a book about apostates or those who depart from the faith, Jude was the opposite. Someone who personally knew Jesus and rejected Him but repented later on. We know that this Jude or Judas was not the one who betrayed the Lord nor was he the other Apostle called Judas Thaddeus because we see in verse 17 he identifies the Apostles as people other than himself.

But you must remember, beloved, the predictions of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Jude 17)

Who is this Judas? He tells us he is also a brother of James. And who is James? James is the brother of our Lord. James is the Lord's half brother. That is to say, Joseph and Mary were mother and father of the half brothers, we call them that, of Jesus because Joseph was not the father of Jesus, so He was only a half brother being virgin born. But if you look at Matthew 13:55 and in Mark 6:3 it says:

Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? (Matthew 13:55)

James and Joseph and Simon and we know this Judas who is the brother of James must then be the brother of the James who is the half brother of our Lord. This is also a big slap in the face to the Roman Catholic church’s idolatrous teachings on Mary. They teach that Mary was without sin but Scripture says that she called Him her Savior. Roman Catholics teach that Mary is a mediator between God and man but Scripture teaches that Christ is the only mediator. Those two heresies are quite well known, but I want to draw your attention to the Catholic teaching of Mary’s perpetual virginity. Jude is proof of this falsehood as well being the Lord’s half brother.

So Jude introduces himself in the first verse as the brother of James which makes him the brother of Jesus. Listen to Galatians 1:19, Paul says, "I did not see any other of the apostles except James, the Lord's brother." So here again this James is identified specifically in Galatians 1:19 as the Lord's brother. He's the head of the Jerusalem church. Now what is so amazing about this is the fact that these brothers of Jesus didn't believe in Him!

After this Jesus went about in Galilee. He would not go about in Judea, because the Jews were seeking to kill him. Now the Jews' Feast of Booths was at hand. So his brothers said to him, "Leave here and go to Judea, that your disciples also may see the works you are doing. For no one works in secret if he seeks to be known openly. If you do these things, show yourself to the world." For not even his brothers believed in him. Jesus said to them, "My time has not yet come, but your time is always here. The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify about it that its works are evil. (John 7:1-7)

We know that later on (probably after the resurrection) at least two of His brothers believed in Him. Two of them were used by the Spirit of God to write New Testament books; James writing the book of James, Jude writing the book of Jude.

Why didn't Jude identify himself as the Lord's half brother? We also see in verse one that He is a bondservant of Jesus Christ, in the greek that word for servant is doulos or slave. The term slave has been a very sensitive word as slave trading was an active reality when many of the Bible translations were being produced. The Greek word doulos occurs 124 times in the Greek NT. Many Bibles have translated it as “servant” or “bondservant.” The translation of doulos as servant is faulty (cf. BDAG, p. 260) and causes people to miss a significant biblical teaching because of the difference between a servant and a slave - John Macarthur

Or as Paul states it; "You are not your own, for you were bought at a price . . . ” (1Co 6:19b-20). Jude is a slave to the Lord. He doesn't want to identify Himself as the Lord's half brother to distract us from the new reality of Jesus as the risen Lord. And the Apostates Jude is exposing are utterly hostile to the idea of being slaves to Jesus Christ. It is interesting that rather than deal with the specific heresies that were going on Jude looks at the character and behavior of these people. Unlike a slave to Christ they are driven by greed and sensuality. Heresies may change through history but the apostates always behave the same way. They love money, they love power, they love pleasure, and they love to sin. These people Jude is warning about are slaves to the world and slaves to their own lust. But Jude’s life is not his own, instead of referring to himself as the Lord’s brother he describes himself as a slave to Him; and the call to follow Christ is a call to slavery, to die to ourselves, to take up our cross, to know the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His suffering. Imagine that, Jude and James grew up in the same house as Jesus and never recognized Who He really was. Now that He was the risen Lord they had repented and devoted their lives to Him. All the Apostles except for John had been killed for their devotion to Jesus but Jude was not backing down. He was calling the church to fight harder than ever for the Gospel that Christ delivered.

To be continued next Friday . . .

Go On To Part 3
Go Back To Part 1