Wednesday, February 22, 2017

HOW THE CULTS STEAL THE BIBLE





The cults steal the Bible in many ways. They add to it; they take away from it; and they also steal it away from their sheep. How do they steal it? Let’s start with Madam Helena Blavatsky, the late nineteenth-century founder of the Theosophical Society. In “Isis Unveiled,” she wrote:

·       “The greatest teachers of divinity agree that nearly all ancient books were written symbolically and in a language intelligible only to the initiated.” (James Sire, “Scripture Twisting,” IVP, p. 108)

“The initiated” refer to supposedly super-spiritual enlightened ones who alone can understand the meaning of the various Scriptures. Orthodox Jewish writer, David Klinghoffer, has expressed a similar idea current among Orthodox Rabbis:

·       “Scripture is cryptic…The Pentateuch contained innumerable textual difficulties…The Rabbis taught that what looked like editing glitches in almost every verse were really allusions to esoteric teachings.” (“Why the Jews Rejected Jesus,” p. 24)

Consequently, only the rabbis could understand Scripture. However, in order to do so, they often rejected its obvious surface meaning, rejecting the Word of God, in order to get at the hidden “esoteric teachings.”

Of course, Scripture does contain deep teachings. However, in order to get into the bedroom or the basement, we have to enter through the front door of the plain surface teachings of the milk of the Word. In fact, Scripture warns us against rejecting the front door. Once we reject this door, obedience to the Lord becomes impossible. Moses argued that obedience depended on the understanding of the common man:

·       "For this commandment which I command you today is not too mysterious for you, nor is it far off. It is not in heaven, that you should say, 'Who will ascend into heaven for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?' Nor is it beyond the sea, that you should say, 'Who will go over the sea for us and bring it to us, that we may hear it and do it?' But the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may do it. (Deut. 30:11-14)

Israel had no excuse for their disobedience. This is because the Word of God was so plain to them that they were able to understand. In fact, Israel had made many excuses for their disobedience. However, they never claimed that they were unable to understand the Word of God.

It was only because they had been able to understand that God was able to test their obedience. Moses, therefore, often reminded them of their moral failures:


·          Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord. (Deut. 8:2-3)

When we examine God’s instructions about gathering manna in Exodus 16, we find that they had been very plain, not at all esoteric. Consequently, Israel disobeyed because they wanted to, not because they were unable to understand God’s commands.

Jesus also assumed that Israel was able to understand His commands.

·          "Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24)

Israel’s problem had not been one of understanding, but an unwillingness to understand, as God had often explained through the Prophets:

·          “And they [Israel] come to you as people come, and they sit before you as my people, and they hear what you say but they will not do it; for with lustful talk in their mouths they act; their heart is set on their gain. And behold, you are to them like one who sings lustful songs with a beautiful voice and plays well on an instrument, for they hear what you say, but they will not do it.” (Ezekiel 33:31-32)

“Christian” evolutionists (CEs) steal the Bible in a different way. They dismiss Genesis 1-11 as unhistorical, claiming that it is merely a spiritual allegory. Not only does this degrade these chapters, it also demeans the rest of the Bible that depends on them. For example, Peter’s argument for the final judgment of God depends upon the historicity of these chapters:

·          For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them into gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment; if he did not spare the ancient world when he brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others; if he condemned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah by burning them to ashes, and made them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly…if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment. (2 Peter 2:4-9)

If these chapters do not teach the God had actually judged in the past, there is no reason to believe that He will judge in the future. Dismissing the obvious – that the Bible teaches history, even in Genesis 1-11 – means that we cannot be certain about anything that the Bible is teaching. In effect, it steals the Bible.

Cult leaders often claim that they have received supernatural revelations necessary to unlock the mysteries of Scripture. Emanuel Swedenborg, Church of the New Jerusalem, elevated himself in this way:

·       “Lest, therefore, such a spirit of denial, which especially prevails with those who have much worldly wisdom, should also infect and corrupt the simple in heart and the simple in faith, it has been granted to me to associate with angels and to talk with them as man with man, also to see what is in the heavens and what is in the hells, and this for thirteen years.” (Sire, 112).

Should we even begin to consider such a claim? No! Instead, Scripture warns us that everything must be established by 2-3 witnesses (Deut. 19:15). It also instructs us to “Test everything. Hold on to the good” (1 Thessalonians 5:21). The Bereans were praised because they didn’t initially believe what Paul had preached but checked everything out against Scripture (Acts 17:11).

Even Jesus warned us to not believe Him without corroborating evidences (John 5:31) but then cited the many reasons why we should believe in Him. Therefore, if anyone asks us to trust in their revelation apart from conforming evidences, they are going against Scripture.

However, this is the very thing that cult leaders have routinely asked us to do. Mary Baker Eddy wrote:

·       “In the year of 1866, I discovered the Christ Science or divine laws of Life, Truth, and Love [her trinity], and named my discovery Christian Science. God had been graciously preparing me during many years for the reception of this final revelation of the absolute divine Principle of scientific mental healing…I won my way to absolute conclusions through divine revelation, reason, and demonstration.” “In following these leading, the Bible was my only textbook. Scriptures were illuminated; reason and revelation were reconciled, and afterwards the truth of Christian Science was demonstrated.” (Sire, 114)

Eddy turned Scripture upside-down, denying even the reality of sin. However, we shouldn’t be surprised that the presence of so many false prophets. Scripture has often warned us about them:

·       For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works. (2 Cor. 11:13-15)

Even miracles are not enough to certify that a prophet has a message from God. It had to completely accord with God’s revelation:

·       “If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder, and the sign or wonder that he tells you comes to pass, and if he says, ‘Let us go after other gods,’ which you have not known, ‘and let us serve them,’ you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams. For the LORD your God is testing you, to know whether you love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. You shall walk after the LORD your God and fear him and keep his commandments and obey his voice, and you shall serve him and hold fast to him. But that prophet or that dreamer of dreams shall be put to death, because he has taught rebellion against the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt and redeemed you out of the house of slavery, to make you leave the way in which the LORD your God commanded you to walk. So you shall purge the evil from your midst. (Deuteronomy 13:1-5)

Sun Myung Moon has asked us to believe that he is the savior from God. While he makes use of the Bible, he has perverted it for his own purposes:

·       “The Bible is not the truth itself but a textbook teaching us the truth.” [What is needed] “is a new truth that can elucidate the fundamental contents of the Bible so clearly that everyone can recognize and agree with it.” “This new truth has already appeared. With the fullness of time, God sent His messenger to resolve the fundamental questions of life and the universe. His name is Sun Myung Moon. For many decades, he wandered in a vast spiritual world in search of the ultimate truth…He came in contact with many saints in Paradise and with Jesus, and thus brought into light all the heavenly secrets through his communication with God.” (Divine Principle, Sire, 117)

In order to come to the Word of God, we must come through Moon. However, for someone to make such claims, they not only have to demonstrate Scriptural support, but they also have to prove themselves through prophesying:

·       But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in My name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.' And if you say in your heart, 'How shall we know the word which the Lord has not spoken?'-- when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him. (Deut. 18:20-22)

The false teacher robs us of a direct relationship with God by putting himself in the place of God and His Word. Instead of being a shepherd who leads His flock to the waters of the Word, the false teacher leads his sheep to his own waters and his own glory.





11 comments:

  1. What you wrote in this essay reminds me of Harold Camping. I had two good friends who were devoted to him, and I had two direct personal conversations with him. For a number of years I couldn't understand why he went astray, but eventually I realized it was his pride. It was a widespread tradgedy that affected alot of people. I am becoming more interested in Ron Choong, and I see some similar issues in his words. I've been writing critical comments on his website essays but so far have received no responses. Some things he's written are persuasive but I think he is putting his faith in too many wrong things. Especially his own intellectual talents.

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    1. You are right about Ron. There are MANY serious problems with his teachings. I have written against his teachings on many occasions.

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  2. If he ignores my comments I'll lose interest in him. If he provides good responses I'll continue to listen and dialogue, and possibly provide some modest financial support. I will also continually pray for guidance. Nobody in this world now has perfect complete doctrinal knowledge and understanding. Ive always been interested in science and history.

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  3. Here is part of an essay I had sent to Ron:

    Choose You this Day

    In February 2010, my wife and attended a Ron Choong (Academy for Christian Thought) seminar at Redeemer Presbyterian Church, NYC, on the doctrine of humanity. Choong concluded,

    “Adam and Eve were probably collective names describing a community of hominids [pre-humans] selected by God for moral cognition.”

    As innocuous to the Christian faith as this statement might sound, it contradicts NT teaching and consequently, the credibility of the entire Bible.

    In opposition to Choong’s thesis, Luke regarded Adam as a single actual individual – “son of God” – according to the genealogy that he recounts (3:38). As all the other people in Luke’s genealogy were actual individuals, we should assume that this also pertains to Adam. (Through its genealogies, the OT also identifies Adam as an historic individual.) Jude 1:14 also suggests that Adam was a single man from whom all others descended.

    Although Jesus didn’t mention Adam and Eve by name, He indisputably made reference to them as individuals, not a “community of hominids”: “…at the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh'" (Matthew 19:4-6 quoting Gen. 1:27 and then Gen. 2:24). Jesus then states that because God had joined man and woman together, they should not be separated. This couldn’t possibly refer to not separating a “community of hominids.” Nevertheless, according to Choong, God had separated them from their ape-like brethren to make them human.

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  4. Thanks. I disagree with dismissing Genesis 1-11 as all allegorical. It seems too casual. But I want to know more about how that conclusion is supprted. I'm hoping to have an opportunity to discuss it with NYSB Hebrew instructor some day. Right now my life responsibilities situations don't allow me to go there. I thank The Lord for my smartphone capabilities. I am also blessed to have access to read and listen on the Institute for Creation Research site.

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  5. It is unsupportable. They simply claim that the Bible had been influenced by errant Ancient NearEastern cosmology. However, the NT consistently regards Genesis as historical:

    Matthew 19:3-6 And Pharisees came up to him and tested him by asking, “Is it lawful to divorce one’s wife for any cause?” He answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female,
    5 and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”

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  6. It seems that different people view the concept of Divine inspiration differently in regards to the canonized Scriptures.

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    1. We need to view Scripture as Jesus does:

      http://mannsword.blogspot.com/2015/10/how-did-jesus-regard-scripture.html

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  7. To think that for me to believe I understand anything as Jesus does is too presumptuous for me. I read the traditional Protestant Bible daily but I believe I (or anyone else) can only understand what The Lord reveals and enables me to understand. My impression about some of the Theologians who interpret different parts of the Bible differently than me is that their exposure to scholarship and information is different than mine. I've learned things I hadn't thought of from different persons with whom I had many disagreements with. What has become much more unwavering for me is my trust and gratitude in the mercies and goodness of The Lord.

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  8. I made a careless error in thinking the word "understanding" when you used the word "regard". I read the essay you cited a few more times and got your point.

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  9. Keep asking for wisdom, and He will grant it. (James 1:5)

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