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Thread: Interesting news letter
Jul 12th, 2010 5:28 AM #1
Interesting news letter
WHEN MINISTRIES ARE HIJACKED
On a recent ministry trip to the USA I was confronted with the phenomena of hijacked ministries.
Coral Ridge and Dr. James Kennedy
Over the years I have had the privilege of being hosted on Dr. James Kennedy’s radio program Truths that Transform and on the Coral Ridge Hour on TV. On numerous occasions I had the privilege of being invited to minister at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, including as a guest speaker during missions events and from the pulpit at Sunday services. Recently I was invited to record some programs for Coral Ridge Ministries. It was heartening to see how this publishing and television ministry has continued to remain faithful to the principles and vision of its founder Dr. James Kennedy.
The Great Omission
However, when I walked around Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church I was horrified to see how much had changed. The big and bold Great Commission and Cultural Mandate signs opposite Reception were missing. The display cabinet with examples of each of James Kennedy’s sixty-five published books next to Reception was gone. The huge world map with pictures of foreign missionaries supported was missing. The hundreds of tract and sermon note stands were empty. Where once God-honouring posters, Scripture displays and mission boards had stood were blank walls. I saw a Ten Commandments display on the floor next to the trash can. Behind Dr. James Kennedy’s pulpit were drums. In front of the two thousand eight hundred pipe organ – one of the largest organs in North America – was a keyboard! The once dynamic and packed book store was now gutted, with very few of Dr. Kennedy’s books still on the shelves. Walls of empty shelves stood where once they were covered with cutting-edge Reformed books.
I felt like I was visiting many of the Cathedrals in Europe, where deadening liberalism has hijacked the magnificent structures built up by dedicated Christians of centuries ago. However this was barely three and a half years after the passing of Dr. Kennedy!
On one of my visits to Dr. Kennedy he had commented that he doubted that many of the ministries around him would survive long after his passing.
One of the questions I wanted to ask him, to see his reaction was: “Dr. Kennedy, I hear that you are still involved, every week, in door-to-door evangelism. I am surprised that you have the time, considering your radio, TV, writing and preaching ministry.”
Dr. Kennedy responded to me with intensity: “Peter, that’s the most important thing I do! All these ministries around me… I doubt that many of them will endure long after I am gone, but Evangelism Explosion – this ministry of multiplication, reaching the lost, bringing them to Christ and training them to reach others also – this is far more important than all my radio, TV and writing ministries.”
Yet the new pastor of CRPC has spoken against door-to-door evangelism from the pulpit.
Faithful to the Founders
Dr. Kennedy impressed and inspired me. I was impressed how Dr. Kennedy had the name and emblem of German Reformer, Dr. Martin Luther, the Cross in the heart, and the name and emblem of Swiss Reformer, Dr. John Calvin, a heart aflame in the hand of God, carved into the woodwork of his pulpit. The great battle-cry of the Reformation from Romans 1:16 was etched across the pulpit: “The Just Shall Live by Faith.”
Dr. James Kennedy taught me to be passionately committed to the Reformation doctrines of the Sovereignty of God and the Lordship of Jesus Christ in all areas of life.
He encouraged me to proclaim a bold and dynamic eschatology of victory and to be convinced that Evangelical Christianity will transform the world. I continue to be challenged by the example and teachings of Dr. Kennedy to confront social evils by fulfilling the Cultural Mandate and the Great Commission.
On one occasion as I was admiring the magnificent architecture of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, Dr. Kennedy chided me: “Don’t be too impressed by externals, Peter,” he said. “I wish I could tell you that all the members of my congregation were saved, but I cannot. I cannot even tell you that all of my staff are saved. I cannot even tell you that all of my pastors and elders are saved. In fact just recently one of our ministers was converted! I will not tell you how many Presbyterian, congregations he had already served before being brought to Christ.”
The Cathedrals of Europe are more often than not in the hands of people who are not faithful to the Faith of the builders. The mainline denominations have, in all too many cases, betrayed their founders and have dropped the torch.
How many Lutheran congregations are faithful to the bold and life transforming message of Dr. Martin Luther?
Most of the Methodists today are far from the doctrines, devotions and dedication of John Wesley.
Most Anglicans in North America and Great Britain are not faithful to The Thirty-Nine articles.
Most Baptists are far from the doctrinal standards in the London Confession of Faith.
How many Presbyterians today are true to the Westminster Confession of Faith?
How many Dutch Reformed ministers are faithful to the Belgic Confession and the Synod of Dort?
The World Council of Churches have hijacked and led astray many denominations which once were faithful to the Scriptures. They have assigned church funds to support Marxist terrorists who were at that time killing missionaries in Rhodesia and elsewhere.
How many Reformed and Presbyterian churches are true to Reformer John Calvin’s motto: “Promptly and sincerely in the service of my God” and to his emblem: A Heart Aflame in the Hand of God?
How many Scotsmen are true to the faith of John Knox?
“Cursed is he who does the work of the Lord deceitfully!” Jeremiah 48:10
The Hijacking of ITMI
I witnessed the hijacking of a mission founded by my father-in-law. A contemporary of Rev. Richard Wurmbrand and Brother Andrew, Bill Bathman has served the persecuted church and smuggled Bibles behind the Iron Curtain, evangelising for 60 years. Yet one of the Missions he founded, ITMI (In Touch Mission International), sidelined Rev. Bathman while he was based in Africa. On his return, for medical reasons, to the USA the situation deteriorated to the point where he felt obligated to resign completely from ITMI in protest over unacceptable practices.
The Hijacking of World Vision
In my first month in full-time missions, over 30 years ago, my mentor Francis Grim of Hospital Christian Fellowship, reported on the ousting of Bob Pierce from the ministry he had founded. World Vision is the biggest Christian relief agency and it was founded by Bob Pierce in the 1950s. Serving as a war correspondent in the Korean conflict Bob Pierce saw the desperate need for a Christian relief ministry. Soon World Vision had grown to unprecedented heights. After he was voted off the board of the ministry he founded, Bob Pierce went out and founded Samaritan’s Purse – an even more effective Christian relief ministry.
Before Almighty God we are responsible to be good stewards of the precious resources that He has entrusted to us. We have a sacred trust to honour: to our supporters, to the churches that we are called to assist, to our affiliates and allies. Most importantly we have a sacred trust to honour before Almighty God. Each one of us will have to stand on the Day of Judgment and give an account of our lives and decisions before Him.
“Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.” 1 Corinthians 4:2
May God grant each of us great courage and much wisdom to be loyal and do what is right to preserve the Christian heritage that we have received from our forefathers and faithfully advance this legacy for future generations.
“Be alert. Stand firm in the Faith, be brave, be strong.” 1 Corinthians 16:13
The audio CD of this message by Dr. Peter Hammond is available from
P. O. Box 74 Newlands 7725
Cape Town South Africa
Website: www.livingstonefellowship.co.zaBlessings in the name of my Lord Jesus Christ who came in the flesh and now sits at the right hand of our God on high.
A confession of faith that the modern Evangelical movement can no longer make!
Jul 14th, 2010 3:18 PM #2
- Join Date
- Mar 2009
Traveler, the church is in big trouble and it saddens me
greatly. The great "falling away" is just around the corner.
Jul 14th, 2010 3:47 PM #3
So true Clang, I think the great falling away or "Apostacy" that John spoke of happening in the end times has been underway for a while now.
Its just getting quite a bit worse at this point as the unbelieving openly blaspheme, mock, and scoff at the name of Jesus.
They don't fear the Lord.
"He who calls on the name of the Lord, shall be saved."
Jul 14th, 2010 6:28 PM #4
The same thing happened to the Worldwide Church of God after Herbert W. Armstrong's death in 1986. Look at what happened after Yeshua died in the First Century ACE. The world got St. Paul!"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" G. Santayana
Jul 15th, 2010 12:11 AM #5
At least now the problem is starting to receive official recognition from within the organized church itself.
That is at least a positive signBlessings in the name of my Lord Jesus Christ who came in the flesh and now sits at the right hand of our God on high.
A confession of faith that the modern Evangelical movement can no longer make!
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