Saturday, November 26, 2016

What Caused Society's Moral Decline?

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

Pastor Chris "Fighting for the Faith" Rosebrough presented a lecture that I used as a springboard for this article.

First, some background on the spiritual condition. Western society has never had morality that we can be proud of, since it has been in a decline for quite a spell. And it's getting worse. Increasing violence, sexual immorality, atheism and other false religions, mental illness, abortion, defamation, lying, corruption at many levels, and so much more. How did we get in such a state?


There are two related causes for the decline in morality in today's society. Whose fault is that?
Image credit: David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The simple answer is sin, which began in Eden. It escalated (Gen. 6:5) and God judged the world with the Great Flood (Gen 7:23). It didn't take long for man's sinful nature to rear it's ugly head afterward, but God promised never to flood the entire world again (Gen. 9:14-15). Don't think we're getting out of this easily, because the next Judgement will be by fire (2 Peter 3:7) and we will all have to give an account of ourselves before God (Rom. 14:10-12).

A good part of the morality problem is because the church as a whole has been compromising on biblical standards, accepting naturalistic evolutionary views, and normalizing sinful activities. In the 18th century, a thing called "higher criticism" became accepted: although the Bible describes miracles as historical events, they became allegorized and "demythologized". Jesus rose from the dead? Nope, it means he rises in our hearts and gives us a new dawn. The Israelites crossed the Red Sea? Wrong again, it was a swampy region that wasn't all that deep (although how the Egyptian army drowned in a few inches of water is not explained by liberals). And so on, ad nauseum.

Now we get to take a fork in the trail and ride on toward science beliefs.


Science thrives in a Christian environment. Unfortunately, Christians began ceding science to materialists, like we did with theology. In the 1830s, Charles Lyell wrote Principles of Geology, and wanted to "free science from Moses", presenting geology to philosophical and methodological naturalism (which includes long ages). His work was an expansion of James Hutton's naturalistic views in the 16th century. Lyell influenced backslidden theology student Charles Darwin, who wrote On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life, which was published in 1859. In 1871, Darwin published The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex, as well as other works over the years. 

At first, Darwin's conjectures were met with rejection and often hostility, but people eventually settled down and began accepting long ages as well as one form of evolution or another; people who wanted excuses to reject God and appear intellectual were happy. Some professing Christians wanted to accommodate the current man-made science philosophies but still have a veneer of Bible belief, so they came up with the "Gap Theory", "Framework Hypothesis", and other untenable compromises.

Many of these compromises against the Word of God is based on faith in science and scientists. Somehow, people have bowed to the altar of Scientism, believing that empirical science is the way to truth, and that "science" will provide the answers to various problems. People also tend to think that scientists are bastions of integrity, and are free of personal biases. Not hardly! There are many instances of flawed peer review, plagiarism, bad scientific research, and outright fraud in the scientific community (both past and present). Here are some slightly edited comments I received while taking notes for this article:
When I was a public school teacher and a bachelor, I shared a house with another bachelor teacher who taught biology at the same school. He was a Quaker and believed in Theistic Evolution. When confronted with Piltdown Man, Nebraska Man, etc., he would dismiss these as isolated incidents of fraud. When I gave causes for motivation for fraud similar to those cited in this article [I was given a link to "Why the epidemic of fraud exists in science today"], including man's sin nature, my friend would say "But they (scientists) just wouldn't do that!" He blindly believed in the moral and professional integrity of ALL scientists, except for perhaps YECS.
You may have noticed atheists' smug disdain toward the Bible heats up when it comes to the question of origins. The religion of atheism needs evolution to be their mythology of beginnings, and they fight with all they have to destroy the truth. A serious problem is that far too many Christians do not take a stand for the truth, or even know the contents of the Bible that they claim to believe! Then Christians are deceived by intellectual-sounding arguments from poor atheist philosophers like C. Richard Dawkins, Bill Nye the Propaganda Guy, and other tinhorns. 

Science, history, archaeology, logic, and a passel of other things support the truth of Scripture, but our faith is not based on current science trends. If your faith is based on scientific "facts" (which are frequently just speculations presented as science), where is your faith when those "facts" change? Let me give you something that applies to both morality and science: the so-called "gay gene". They were "born that way", so we have to let them have their immoral and rebellious lifestyles. Surprise! There is no "gay gene". Deviant-sexuality advocates are actually protesting! Seems to be the current trend to protest to try and change reality. One other point about false science and morality: evolution is used to justify abortion.

Bible-believing Christians are persecuted, including harassment, ridicule, and bullying. In some countries, our brothers and sisters in Christ are tortured and murdered for their faith, and that is coming West. Again I say that we need to know what and why we believe, and take our stand so we can be credible and effective in the world. In this pagan evolutionary culture, we would do well to pay attention to Joshua 24:15.

So, take a look-see. We rode a side trail for a spell, and ended up on the same one we started with. Both liberal "Christians" and atheists reject the authority of God's Word. There are theistic evolutionists who join hands with atheists in ridiculing biblical creationists, and you'll be hard-pressed to find a TE that doesn't act like an intolerant atheist. Lackadaisical professing Christians argue from materialistic, God-denying presuppositions. Our presupposition should be that the Bible really is God's Word, and is true from the very first verse. By letting trends of worldly society run rampant, letting atheistic interpretations of science underpin morality, and compromising on the Bible, we're equipping the enemies of Christ.

Morality and faith were compromised years ago because of intellectual-sounding philosophies from liberal theologians, and people also accommodated atheistic interpretations of science. These trends are accelerating. Now, even though liars for Darwin will call biblical creationists "science deniers" (based on the fallacy of equivocating evolution with science), they can still be given the truth. That is, if we truly believe the Bible. Are we willing to follow the commands of Jesus to preach repentance for the forgiveness of sins and make disciples, or are we going to just float downstream?

If you'd like to hear the powerful lecture that tripped my trigger to write this, you can listen or download for free Chris Rosebrough's "Two Kingdoms The Church's Role in the Moral Decline of Society".

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Fresh Words from God

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

We need something new. That Bible on the shelf (or wherever it is, I can't find mine) is tired and old. Fortunately, we have apostles that are busy anointing other apostles, and they are proclaiming direct revelations from God! I can be blessed, especially if I make seed offerings to their ministries. Praise the Lord! It's all about me, God needs me to fulfill my dreams, the Holy Spirit can't function without me, God wants me to meet all my material needs and desires, and maybe I, too, will be told by an angel to preach "Kingdom Power". I'm so special, I don't know how he made it so long without me.


Christians are ignorant of what we're supposed to believe and are functional heretics. Worse, we uphold false teachers because we will not - or CAN not - use biblical discernment.

Well, isn't that the kind of thing people are saying? Christians have turned into a bunch of biblically illiterate selfish owlhoots. We have enough problems of alleged "former Christians" who have rejected God and claimed he doesn't even exist (or God is evil) because he's not a magic wish-granting genie that jumps through hoops and is not at their beck and call. Then some professing Christians treat our sovereign Creator the same way! Say a formula and demand that God gives them what they want. God is holy and just, old son, not your errand boy, savvy?

It's amazing that we have false teachers in pulpits, television, the Web, and so on that are being applauded for saying nonsense when people should be walking out on them. Can't be biblically judging a false teacher because "I don't want to miss out on a blessing". Such "theology" is feckless and fearful, and people like that need to repent.

Many professing Christians are actually functional heretics as seen in a survey of Americans. I think it's well established that spiritual trends happening on this continent have already been established in Europe, and to a greater extent. People are not exercising healthy skepticism. The Bereans checked the teachings of Paul and Silas to see if they were supported by Scripture (Acts 17:11). Likewise, when I was a theologically liberal and ignorant teenager, a Fundamentalist would say something about the Bible, and I'd want to know if he could back up what he said. Today, we have people who are ignorant of the Bible that they claim to believe, and accepting false teachings because those folks stoke egos very well (2 Tim 4:3). Pay attention, also, to how those "teachers" claim to speak for God through the Holy Spirit, but glorify themselves instead of Jesus (John 16:14).

God made it clear how to know that he sent a real prophet (Deut 13:1-4 and 18:20-22, Isaiah 8:20, Matt. 7:20) Many self-appointed "prophets" are frequently wrong and self-serving, in the style of Mormon false prophet Joseph Smith. Political "prophesies" are abundant. Opal Covey ran for mayor of Toledo, Ohio five times, and lost every time even though she was "told by God" that she would win. When she lost, she said she really won, but the election was stolen from her. (False prophet blaming others, and God cannot keep his promises, it seems.) William Tapley and Vonda Brewer are off the rails: Tapley says Donald Trump is the Bible's "777", and Brewer prophesied a terrorist attack on Election Day (she also said God told her Trump would be discarded by the Republicans). I saw people posting on Facebook that Donald Trump would win, and there was an utterance that God said the next president would "be a Senator". Not difficult to claim such things are prophesies, and when they go wrong, oh well, move on and do it again since professing Christians who follow them do not use discernment.

One of the things I've emphasized in both creation science and theology is definitions. For example, the word evolution has several definitions. Some people will say that "change in allele frequencies" is evolution, therefore, muck-to-mocker evolution is true. Not hardly! The "change in allele frequencies" thing is accepted by creationists and has nothing to do with evolution.

Similarly, people who promote the "sign gifts" (tongues, prophesy, and the like) deal from the bottom of the deck when giving proof texts and definitions of their views. Dr. Michael Brown dismissed the clear teachings regarding false prophets, saying those people are not false prophets, but instead, prophesied falsely. Besides, we're not ancient Israel, so those rules about false prophets always being right don't apply today (similar to arguments used to redefine marriage and sexual morality today). What is with this guy? He has the arrogance to change clear teachings of Scripture? A bit of that healthy skepticism should have people ask, "Where did God change the rules on prophesy, according to Scripture? Are Hebrews 13:8 and Isaiah 40:8 irrelevant now?"  

Once again, if people knew and believed the Bible, they'd leave these false teachers in droves. I think it's a sign of the end times that people are abandoning the faith and following liars (Matt. 24:10-11, 1 Tim. 4:1-2) instead of exposing them (Matt. 7:15-16, Rom. 16:17, Titus 1:9 and 1:13, Eph. 5:11-13, 2 Thess. 3:6, 2 Cor. 11:13-15).

To hear more about Dr. Brown's compromises and affirmations of sidewinders, I refer you to this podcast and passel of supporting links from Pirate Christian Radio.

Time is short, and we have work to do. We cannot be biblically illiterate, vague on the essentials of the faith, compromising, or condoning false teachers. Bible-believing Christians must saddle up and ride for the brand — the Word of God — and not go following other trails to those who do not believe the Word, and seek glory for themselves instead of Jesus.

 

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Another Challenge for Christians

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

This is a follow-up of sorts to my previous article, "Challenges for Christians". It follows the same trail and then branches off onto a slightly new one.

There are Christians who complain that their spiritual lives are not what they should be. Worse, when attacked by atheists and evolutionists with various "Gotcha!" challenges, they don't know what to say. Well, don't blame God, Pilgrim.

What are you putting in your mind?


Many Christians wonder why their spiritual lives are lacking. A good part of the problem is what we put into our minds on a regular basis.
Image credit: Pixabay / johnhain
When looking at "Likes", posts, "Tweets" and so forth from friends and followers, I see a mixed bag. Sometimes I wonder if they consider themselves Christians and creationists because they like certain Pages and sites, have watched a couple of Bible-oriented movies, share a funny captioned picture (take that, evolutionists, I really showed you, ha ha ha), read the blasphemous book The Shack and the admittedly fake Heaven is for Real, the discredited Holy Ghost movie, and so on. People seem to be more concerned with action movies, Pokemon, woman-degrading obscene rap, death metal, and other negative things than they are with wholesome and biblical matters.

People are giving their money and attention to movies with gratuitous sex and violence. Now, we all know the violence done with special effects, CGI, and so on, and people usually aren't hurt for real. Still, we seem desensitized by the storyline. "Sure was a great dinosaur flick. I loved the scene where the buy was bit in two and then each part fell on..." Movies range from one-on-one personal violence, all the way up to monster and giant robot flicks where, again in the storyline, millions of people would have been killed. Maybe I'm the only one that doesn't like large-scale death in stories.

Television shows have fornication, adultery, profanity, violence, and much the same as in movies, but on a smaller scale. The show Dexter was about a guy who had a hobby of killing people, but only those who "deserved it" while taking an introspective approach. It was a big hit, violent, and about Dexter's own vigilante justice. Who is he to decide who "deserves it"? Like atheists who attack Christians because our worldview "deserves it", even though they have no consistent moral standard for their views; such a decision is arbitrary. The Dexter lessons are — what? Are they consistent with a Christian worldview? I've read posts from professing Christians about how much they like Game of Thrones, Walking Dead, and other shows for which I'm rather startled to learn of professing Christians expressing enthusiasm.

Christians especially need to be careful what we're feeding our minds. No, I'm not saying we have to be Pollyannas. Sometimes some violent things, or possibly even sexual, are worth watching. In 1971 or thereabouts, my father took me to see The French Connection, which had an "R" rating in the US (no one under 18 permitted without parent or guardian) because of the anti-drug subject matter. There are some rough films or television shows worth watching. I suggest you hear this free Matt Walsh podcast. Hold on, before I give you the link, I want to tell you something. If I linked to the podcast itself, there's no download or listen options. Instead, go to this page and look for "Dear Christians, We Need to be More Careful About the Shows We Watch" on 10/28/16.

Two "D" words apply for what we listen to, the shows we watch, the games we play, and even the people we hang around with: Discretion and Discernment. I want to add that we should be associating with people who are not negative, but uplifting. Even if the way was "associate" with some people can be by listening to their recordings or watching characters on a screen. Scripture is clear on what we need to be dwelling on (Phil. 4:8, Eph. 4:29, Acts 2:42, Col 3:16, 2 Tim. 3:16-17, Heb. 13:9), and we must walk in the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23)

Even if what we spend our time and intellectual energy on isn't actually harmful, it still takes time away from what is important. Christians cannot have good spiritual lives, respond to atheists and evolutionists, have confident walks with God, if they don't spend time in the Word and get solid biblical teachings. (Sometimes I feel, "Thanks for slapping me down in the love of Christ, Dr. MacArthur, and you don't even know I was here". Or other teachers. You get the idea.) In the video embedded in that last article that I linked to up top,  Dr. White made a reference to a term that Mohammedans use for Christians and Jews: People of the Book. He said, "The People of the Book often tend to be more of the People of the 'Net". How much time do we spend on Tweetbird, Bookface, forums, playing games, or what have you?

My challenge to you is to examine yourself and see how much time you're spending on things that are contrary to God's Word, and how much time you're spending with God. I suggest you take some time off from some things and replace them with God-honoring material. See the improvement in your spiritual life.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Challenges for Christians

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

One of the most significant problems that Christians and creationists encounter from atheists is that they seem to want us to accept their evolutionary materialistic naturalistic presuppositions, but they do not want to let us have our own presuppositions. Because we reject their views and believe God's Word and in miracles, we are often labeled "science deniers" or "reality deniers". The problem here is that they are denying logic itself by imperiously setting the definitions of "science" and "reality" in their favor. From there, they feel entitled to ridicule and misrepresent us. I don't rightly recollect anybody appointing atheists to be in charge of definitions.


Christians and creationists are often ambushed by atheists with cherry-picked Bible "problems". Unfortunately, neither side can be bothered to do their homework. An atheist issued "A Challenge to Christians", and received an excellent response.
Image credit: Wikimedia Commons / Larch
Although village atheists claim to believe in "reason" and "science", they frequently display little knowledge of or skill in either one. (For example, there is a narcissistic atheopath who used profanity in comments on my posts, and said he would apologize if I admitted he was right on other things. Aside from being blatantly irrational, he was also blackmailing me and telling me to lie that he was right so he would apologize for his bad behavior!) We have to deal with outright lying, prejudicial conjecture (offering an uninformed but strongly negative opinion), and other fallacies. Even more so for those of us in apologetics.

Something we frequently encounter is the straw man fallacy. Basically, it's a misrepresentation of an opponent's position and then attacking that instead of the real position. Professing atheists do this frequently. Making a straw man argument is easy to do, and people often do it by accident.

It's no surprise to come into contact with atheists and evolutionists who misrepresent the Bible, Christians, creationists, and so on in a malicious way. They'll cherry-pick things out of the Bible that are taken out of contexts (not just the context of the surrounding verses, but historical, cultural, linguistic, and so on). Then when they have their bucket of picked cherries, they dry gulch Christians with items for us to defend. I'll allow that other times, someone gets a wrong notion and makes a challenge on something out of context, but is not being malicious.

An atheist on YouTube posted a little-watched video (269 views at this writing) called, "A Challenge to Christians". He seems to want to be reasonable and hear our side of the story, but he has grabbed some things that are, again, out of context. (Interesting how people claim to come up with stumpers or even things that cannot be answered, but don't bother to do their homework; most of the answers are readily available online through various apologetics ministries.) The video begins with a vague misrepresentation of Matthew 10:33 to prod us into participating or we're denying Christ, but I can hazard a guess as to why he didn't actually use the context, even if only the whole paragraph in Matthew 10:26-33.

It is indeed unfortunate that many Christians are slack jawed when confronted with the alleged stumpers that atheists throw our way. That's because too many professing Christians do not actually believe the entirety of the Bible, yet claim it's true enough to give them eternal salvation. My challenge to Christians (as I've stated many times before) is to know what and why you believe. Get into the Word and good biblical teaching, not that Rev. Dr. Feelgood-style nonsense. We are to be ready to give an answer (1 Peter 3:15). Those of us who are biblical creationists have many excellent resources available to not only build up our own faith, but to help equip us to give answers.

Dr. James White took that atheist's "Challenge to Christians" and pointed out several flaws in the author's naturalistic presuppositions and reasoning. (He was under time and other constraints, so he could not go into as much detail as he'd like.) The video is embedded below, and the link to the audio is here. The first part of Dr. White's discussion about something else is also helpful, but the pertinent area begins at the 14 minute 14 second mark and ends at 34:12. I'd be much obliged if you'd see how the atheist's misrepresentations are answered. If you want to see it, the atheist's original video is here. For more about evidence, presuppositions, and logic, you may want to see my article, "Evidential or Presuppositional Apologetics?"



Saturday, November 5, 2016

Is God Foolish?

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

People get mighty fond of their learning and intelligence, and usually detest being called ignorant or stupid. Humanistic philosophies elevate "science" (which is a philosophy in and of itself) to supreme authority and importance in matters of truth. Mankind as a whole looks down on God and considers his wisdom as foolishness. Quote miners may find the phrase "the foolishness of God" and use it to their own advantage. Inquisitive honest people may want to read the source, 1 Corinthians 1:25, and see that it means something completely different.


People are fond of their wisdom, and consider the wisdom of God to be foolishness. The opposite is true.
Image credit: Morguefile / Plume
Those who are wise in the eyes of the world arrogantly require God to do things their way, and fallaciously claim that if they cannot understand God's methods, he does not exist. What happens is that they become idolators, creating a false god that they can reference but has nothing to do with the true Creator God as revealed in the Bible.

The wisdom of man? God doesn't pay that no nevermind (Isaiah 29:14, 33:18, 1 Cor. 1:20-25). It really puts a burr under the saddles of humanistic intellectuals that God has not seen fit to have people encounter him on their terms and in their alleged wisdom. Instead, he has revealed his ways to the humble (Matt. 11:25-30). Believers are fools according to worldly wisdom, which is arbitrary and resorts to the genetic fallacy! Indeed, the knowledge we have is because God has given it to us, whether we believe he exists or not; without God, knowledge is impossible (Prov. 1:7, 2:6).

Let me stop here and refer you to a couple of excellent sermons by Dr. John MacArthur that go into detail on this. Like just about everything else I recommend, they are free to listen online or download. Or you can read the transcripts: "The Foolishness of God, Part 1" and "The Foolishness of God, Part 2". I'm letting y'all off easy, there's a 12-sermon series I wanted to post...

Humanists, professing atheists, "wise" people — they make up their own standards and rules, then promptly make a passel of logical fallacies. In a debate with James White (who argues from a Calvinist position), atheist David Silverman showed the paucity of atheistic thinking. He made false accusations and committed atrocious logical fallacies in his efforts to make God the bad guy, bringing to mind Job 40:8. He even redefined "straw man" to suit his own purposes and justify his use of it! Silverman acted like an anthropologist and historian with his fantasy about the origin of "religion", but when challenged about cosmic evolution, he said, "I am not a cosmologist". Further, when cornered about theology, Silverman said, "I am in no position to interpret". His worldview is arbitrary and inconsistent; atheism itself is incoherent. Also notice that Silverman goes back to the Christian foundation: Genesis.

To see David Silverman show his sidewinder nature in the debate with James White, brace yourself, the whole shootin' match runs about three hours. (I grabbed software to convert it to MP3 so I could hear it at my leisure, and option worth considering.) It's worth hearing to see worldly "logic" and "reason" in action, and what is considered the foolishness of God is still light years above the wisdom of man. For the video of the debate on whether or not the New Testament is evil, click here.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Rewriting the Ten Commandments for Today

Ever since God gave the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:1-17), people have been a mite cranky about them. The Israelites broke them, and everyone else has been happy to oblige in breaking them as well (which is one reason taking people through the Ten Commandments is a powerful witnessing tool). They've been around for a few thousand years, and have been making people mighty uncomfortable.


For some people in this pagan evolutionary culture, the Ten Commandments aren't good enough. Some have tried to rewrite them.
Ten Commandments Monument in Austin, Texas image credit: J. Williams
Some folks have tried to rewrite them, including Clinton Richard Dawkins (who does not even keep number eight). It's not like there's anything wrong with them — except to misotheists and liberal culture revisionists who mock the authority of God's Word. We're in a pagan evolutionary culture, and the Commandments make for a hostile environment.

Some yahoos at Seeker dot com decided to replace the Ten Commandments with their own rules for the "good person" (defining "good" by their own subjective opinions), which would be right at home in a modern Bible-denying church, I reckon. For a discussion of Seeker's spurious version compared to the truth, click on "Do the Ten Commandments Need a Modern Update?" Unless, of course, you need to run to your safe space.