Monday, October 05, 2009

The Apostate Teachings of Rob Bell

As a preamble read this link by Peter Rollins who Rob Bell endorses and has had as his main speaker at his latest conference. Buckle your seat belts.

Are you beginning to get the picture? These emergents cannot even affirm their belief in a supreme being. This is the second half of Bell's teaching. He continues:

Who’s making a better world, Caesar or Jesus? They believed that a church was a living, breathing display of a whole new world God was bringing about, right here, right now. Because some people, some people are fierce with reality, aren’t they? They don’t have to spout off about how they’re right and everybody else is wrong because there is something going on inside of them so powerful, so tangible, you can’t help but ask questions.

Who is making a better world??? Let us come back to reality. Many of the early believers were tortured and killed for their faith in Christ. If indeed these compassionate communities were as benign and nebulous about Jesus, and consumed with magnanimousness and compassion, for what were they slaughtered? For what acts of kindness were they brought before the magistrates and condemned? Where is this “better world”? The church itself is hardly a better world, much less the world. These emergents have altered the clear teaching of Scripture concerning the perilous times that are coming, and in fact are here.

You’re dying to know why they are the way they are. You want them to explain the reason for the hope that’s within them. It’s because when you’re around people like this, you have this sense that you’ve in some way been with Jesus, and that is church. This group of people who by their compassion, their generosity, the grace that they extend to others, you find yourself believing when you’re around them, that God hasn’t given up on the world. That’s the gospel. That’s it. The gospel is the good news that God hasn’t given up on the world, that the tomb is empty and that a giant resurrection rescue is underway and that you can be a part of it. And so, yes, this has a deeply personal dimension to this. Jesus is saving me. He’s saving me from my sins, from my mistakes, from my pride, from my indifference to the suffering of the world around me, from my cynicism and despair. The brokenness I see in the world around me is true of my own soul, and so He’s rescuing me moment by moment, day by day, because God wants to put it all back together. You, me, the whole world. And so He starts deep inside each of us with our awareness that we need help, that we need saving, that we need rescuing.

The gospel is “God hasn’t given up on the world”? That’s what Wesley and Whitefield and Edwards and Moody preached? Is that what sparked the great revivals in Wales and the Hebrides? Was that the message of the Great Awakenings here in America? If so, John the Baptist was a fool, along with every Bible believing minister after him. And when Paul preached Christ and Him crucified he was overly constricting the gospel message. And when the Philippian jailor begged to know how to be saved Paul’s exclusion of acts of kindness and compassion misrepresented the gospel message. Bell's words are absurd.

And then He begins to show us, step by step, what it looks like to put flesh and blood on this gospel. Because we all fall short, and that’s the beautiful part. Broken, flawed, vulnerable people like you and me are invited to be the hands and feet of a Jesus who loves us exactly as we are and yet loves us way too much to let us stay that way. I believe. I believe because I see. I see the resurrection all around me. If people only had your life and they were asked the question: “Has Jesus risen from the dead?”, how would they answer? Has He? May you be a “yes” to the question “Has Jesus risen from the dead?” And may you come to see, may you understand, that you are the good news. You are the gospel.

And there you have it. Pastor Bell succinctly reveals the essence of emergent theology – you. This is no Christ centered message, and in fact, Jesus takes a back seat to kindness and unity. The cross is nowhere to be found here, and the blood is never even hinted at. Why? Because this theology is not about Jesus and His cross, this is about you. God desires to make a better world for you and I, and he will use everything but the cross. Good deeds and compassion and kindness are the rocks upon which this emergent church will be built.

People are convinced through kindness, not the Word and not the ministry of the Spirit. This, my friends, is open apostasy. No charity can soften the assessment of this New Age message of hope in humanity. What Bell is teaching is a bloodless religion that can be espoused by kind atheists and can join hands with most other religions. And this is serious business. If you believe that there is a God, and that Jesus is the only Savior and Redeemer, then you must not join hands, neither bid blessing, upon men like Rob Bell. I will expound further in my next post.

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