My Thoughts on Religious Critics (part one)

On the opening night of The Orange Conference, main session speaker and TOC leader Reggie Joyner made a statement that I had never thought about before but couldn't agree with more. He said, "If Pharisees were alive today they'd all be bloggers".

Let that sink in.

What was the main goal of Pharisees anyway? To keep the laws as they interpreted them and make sure eveyone else did too? They made life as difficult as possible for Jesus and his gang of trouble makers who dared live out God's word differently then the righteous Pharisees. The Pharisees took every possible chance to tear down the ministry of Jesus by trying to prevent Him from healing on the sabbath, speaking with prostitutes, and dining with sinners. If Pharisees walked the earth today they'd be spending their time blogging about the short comings or heresy of guys like Rob Bell, Andy Stanley, Donald Miller, or Joel Osteen.

These modern day Pharisee-bloggers are basically a group of folks who have done very little with their own faith except bash the ones that are actually doing ministry. They're a bunch of know-it-all, self-righteous, their-way-or-the-highway Christians that give the other followers of Jesus a bad name. The hard part is there is no way to pick them out of a crowd. Back in the day it was easy because at least they had the guts to come out in public and address their accused face to face. Much like the Pharisees in Jesus time. But now were left with hidden Pharisees who hide behind their blogs and message boards, spreading hate through ill-will and nasty comments about people they have never met or even had the guts to confront.

There are a lot of well know preachers and teachers out there that I don't agree with, but how can I argue with the results? People are coming to know Christ under their ministry and countless more are growing in their faith. Love him or hate him, I'd be willing to bet more people have come to know Christ under Joel Osteen then all of his strongest critics combined. For whatever reason though his critics feel as if those people are less-saved because they surrendered to God through Joel's method then the way of the Pharisees.

Stuart Hall put it this way, "An inability or unwillingness to be unconditionally accepting says more about your own personal insecurities and weaknesses than it does your righteousness or holiness."

Here's a crazy idea Pharisee-bloggers , why don't you devote more time to loving the God who created you, acting justly to the people He created, and walking humbly with Him and less time trying to play God, being judge / jury / executioner to those that are actually living out their faith, and stop to consider for just a moment how much more God could use you to do HIS will versus YOUR will.

My prayer is God shows these modern day Pharisees- bloggers more grace then they show their fellow believers.

Comments

Josh said…
"If Pharisees walked the earth today they'd be spending their time blogging about the short comings or heresy of guys like Rob Bell, Andy Stanley, Donald Miller, or Joel Osteen."

I guess if Jesus was here today, he would be a Pharisee then? Because, Jesus called out and warned continually about people like those mentioned in the above quote.

More people are being condemned to hell because of the false gospel being preached by Joel, and others like him.(td jakes, joyce meyer, ect) Gal. 1:7-9 talks about these kinds.
It is our jobs as Christians to warn, and rebuke those who are preaching false gospels; it is not pharisaic, legalistic, or judgmental to do so.(2 tim 4:2, titus 1:13, 1 Cor. 5:1-13)

People are saved by hearing the word of God preached( Rom. 10:17)
Not by some psychobabble, feel good message that scratches people's itching ears. The law is the tutor that leads us to Christ(Gal.3:1)
Without the preaching of repentance,(which all of the above names, DO NOT preach) people won't be getting saved, if they do, it's by the grace of God, not anything they are hearing at these so called churches. The teaching of Jesus, paul, and the other disciples was always repentance.(Lk 5:1, Lk 24:1 Acts: 20:1, to list just a few.)

These now a day Pharisees are not people on an ego trip, they are trying to do the very thing Jesus commanded, Repent, and follow the gospel. If that's legalism then Jesus was a legalist!

I do not hide behind the mask of my blog, but openly and boldy stand for the truth and will not back down from it! I go out and share the gospel with the lost, praying that God would save souls, convicting both the atheist and the 'so called modern Christian' I do not feel that i am any more righteous or better then them, because i was them at a certain point and time. By the grace of God, he decided to save my wicked soul. Out of thankfulness and love for God, because of the holy spirit i obey His teachings in the gospel(the above scriptures and especially Matt. 19&20)

I would love do discuss this further, as i am more then willing to stand up for Christ and the gospel He preached, and ready to hack and slash my way through the heresy that is 90%+ modern Christendom.
Jesusgreek said…
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Jesusgreek said…
Thoughts...

- Is repentance the only reason Jesus came? I'm not saying it's not top on the priority list of reasons why Jesus was here but could He have had a much deeper plan in mind. To many people reduce Jesus entire life and ministry to "if you died tonight would you go to heaven or hell". That is doing the greatest injustice ever to the life of Christ. The bible says Matt. 5:17, "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them." Meaning: Jesus came to live out the law as an example to others as to how to live while on this earth. Also, in John 10:10 Jesus says, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." or in KJV, "The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly". (to kill one argument before it starts, "abundant" doesn't mean lots of money, nice things, or a perfect life here on earth) But it does mean that Jesus knows we have to spend some time here on earth and His desire is that by following Him our time here can be one of joy and not sorrow. So what's the point? Jesus obviously had more in mind then just "repent, repent, repent". God knows our life here on earth separated from Him will be hell so He sent not only a savior from eternal hell but a savior from our earthly one also.

- NO ONE but God knows if a person that comes to know Jesus through the teachings of any of the afore mentioned pastors are saved, just like you have no idea if the people you think you lead to Christ are. The bible says we will know believers by their fruit and there are a LOT of amazing people producing a ton of fruit for Christ that follow Him through the teaching of these pastors. Just because some people on this earth get caught up following a certain pastor and not the One whom the pastor is pointing to doesn't mean everyone is like that. That is the exact small minded, put-God-in-box, I'm right the the whole world (or at least 90% of it) is wrong type of thinking I was talking about. Thank you for proving my point for me.

- I really wish I had God as figured out as all this Pharisee bloggers do. They know for sure who's in and who's out. What every single word in the scripture means, and what God is always thinking. Thank you Pharisee bloggers for you contribution to OUR faith.
bumcUthGuy said…
I am becoming increasingly concerned with this attitude of “Christian Supremacy.” The whole my theology is better than yours junk has really been getting on my nerves. I think we can all agree that Jesus is The Way and the only way. I also think we all must understand that we can all get to Jesus from different directions. There is no right or wrong way to get to Jesus, as long as you get there!

People are not “saved” by hearing the word of God preached; it’s through grace shown to us by Jesus that we even have a chance. (Ephesians 2:8) How you come to know that grace is between you and Jesus…not a pastor, you, and Jesus.

Why are we attacking our own brothers and sisters in Christ? We should be thankful that we have fellow Christians that can reach others through a different approach than our own. Let’s love each other like Christ has loved us, whether our opinions our similar or different.

Doesn’t Paul write to the people of Corinth to stop dividing themselves over petty issues? God is so much bigger than our own theologies…

I think that is all that Mike is trying to say! Let’s get over ourselves and put our focus on God, where our focus should be in the first place.

Grace and peace <><
Kristie said…
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Kristie said…
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Kristie said…
you know it is funny if you read this Josh guy's blog, he wrote a little blog that he might need to consider living by

"If you go to a brother with a just cause and they buck your rebuke, the Spirit is trying to convict them, and they don't like it, they don't want to submit to the Holy Spirit....most likely unsaved! A true believer does not have that attitude, there is a humbleness and meekness. A true brother will be eager to understand what he/she is doing wrong, and want to make it right! They will submit to council and rebuke. This idea of 'Christians, shooting their wounded' is just not true."

Brother... where is this humbleness and meekness that a "true" believer should have? why are you shooting the wounded (since you obviously think Mike has a lesser faith than you)... How many other Christians have you shot down because you think they aren’t “true” believers…your blog response was full of venomous anger… not brotherly love, humbleness and meekness

I've meet your type before... they'll tell you your salvation is in jeopardy because of one reason or another... they know who are “true” believers and who is “damned to hell”... they’ll tell you that "Christ's way” is the only way when they REALLY mean “MY way to Christ is the ONLY way”

I'm pretty sure if you asked Jesus what is the greatest thing we can do it wouldn’t be to "Repent and follow me” (in reference to your response)... it would probably be something about loving God and loving others (your neighbor)... oh yeah! That IS what HE said!

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