Danger of Unity Amongst Religions (Ecumenism)


DANGER OF UNITY AMONGST RELIGIONS
MAINSTREAM CHURCHES & ECUMENISM

 The following is an article from "Watchman" or ‘Jamakaran’ transliterated from Malayalam language under the caption : " MARTHOMA’S MARAMON".

For many years, as you are aware, Marthoma Church has been conducting its annual convention on a wide stretch of the sandy shore of river Pumpa in Maramon. For the year 1997 this was, as usual, conducted in February. Hundred thousands attend this convention. If asked, the majority of those who attend the convention will readily say that it was the most blessed convention indeed. But I have heard from some that there had been confusion in the presentation of faith and doctrines of the Church. Some were shocked and afraid to hear certain preaching and actions that led to the following philosophies:

  1. ALL RELIGIONS ARE ONE
  2. ALL RELIGIONS SHOULD JOIN TOGETHER AS ONE UNIT, IN THE UNITY OF FAITH.

In this year’s (1997) convention the church invited preachers who upheld the above noted philosophies. At a convention meeting held on 19 February,1997 Rev.Dr.Shuman King preached. An extract of his preaching is appended below for an example. This is obtained from the Malayala Manorama which is one of the leading Malayalam Newspapers in Kerala State South India.

"In these days, most people are endeavoring to establish and seek a Christ centered united church. But there shall be no unity of the churches or religions if you make it Christ centered. The unity of churches will take place only if it is made Eswara (Hindu name for God) centered. Not only do we need unity among the churches, but we need to have an ecumenical stand with other religions. Then only the ecumenism becomes complete. A life that forgets the Creator causes global divisions and offenses. When we are convinced that we are created by God, real ecumenism is born. We must realize that a group that is divided is not of God’s church". Rev.Dr.Shuman King

The intent of the above utterance by Shuman King was to replace the name of Jesus with the word "God" or Allah or Eswara with bishops and church leaders showing their approval with their "Amens". Now it becomes possible to accommodate all religions under one umbrella of unity. Consequently, it is possible for Christians to be united with other religions of this world and become one with them. The danger and deception that lies behind this fallacy is not known to many.

The Bible says: "All things were made by Jesus, and without Jesus was not anything made that was made (John 1:3). How then can church leaders hold the view that Jesus is not the creator? Few years ago the Bishop of the Church of S.India, Samuel Amrthum professed this false doctrine. He declared: All religions are one, all gods are one and the same. He did not believe that salvation was only through Jesus Christ. The Jamakaran magazine alerted both The Marthoma Church and C.S.I on this false teaching. Now this deception has infiltrated into the Marthoma Church in a convincing manner. I am concerned that the Christian who is not grounded in the word of God will fall victim to this satanic trap.

While this is happening in the East, I want to draw your attention to events in the West. The moderator of The United Church of Canada, the highest Protestant denomination in Canada, Rev.Bill Phipps, does not believe in the divinity of Christ nor that He resurrected from the dead as declared in the Holy Bible. On 15th November 1997, page A2 of the Toronto Star, a leading Canadian newspaper, the following report was noted:

United Church Leader’s View on Jesus.

Whether Jesus was God and rose from the dead may always be debatable, but something that seems certain right now is that Bill Phipps is making his mark as head of the United Church of Canada.

Elected moderator of Canada’s largest protestant denomination only in August, he already finds himself embroiled in controversy over his non-literal interpretation of the New Testament.

But in a church whose previous moderators have sparked controversy – leading a reluctant membership toward more liberal views of homosexuality, for example – Phipps’ outspokenness, surprises, or displeases, only some. And so far Rev.Bill Phipps is defending his right to express his views.

Instead of dividing the largest Protestant denomination in the country,Phipps said the "little controversy" his remarks sparked should be viewed as a "marvelous opportunity to evangelize".

"There have been literally hundreds of thousands of people confronted with the person of Jesus and talking about him in the last two and a half weeks," Phipps told about 400 people at Metropolitan United Church, which is the largest United Church in Canada.

"Isn’t that what spreading the gospel is all about"?

Phipps’ "little controversy" developed into a theological minefield last month when the newly elected moderator told an Ottawa newspaper he doesn’t believe Jesus is God nor does he think Christ rose from the dead, as stated in the Bible.

………..Phipps said one of the strengths of the United Church is its tolerance of divergent views. "I honour and respect those of you whose faith is based on those rock solid creeds. But I also honour those whose faith may be expressed a litle differently," he said. Phipps added that many of the views at the root of the controversy have been expressed by others, including previous moderators…………

While most comments from the audience disputed Phipps’ views, several praised his "courage" and "frankness."

From the foregoing illustrations it is clear that the unique gospel of Jesus Christ is offensive to achieving unity of religions and churches of the East and West. But God has made Jesus the Headstone of the corner…….. As for Rev.Phipps, he does not believe in the resurrection of Jesus as stated in the Holy Bible and he thereby denies Christ’s divinity.

Look at what happened immediately after Pentecost. Peter and John were arrested for preaching Jesus. Being grieved that they (Peter and John) taught the people, and preached through Jesus, the resurrection from the dead, the priests and the captain of the temple and the Sadducees came upon them and arrested them. (Acts 4:1-3)

On the following day Peter again preached in the name of Jesus.(Acts 4:10) before the Sanhedrim. The Sanhedrim threatened them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. "But Peter and John answered and said unto them: Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye". (Acts 4:17-19).

In verse ten and twelve in Acts chapter four, Peter and John declared that there is no other name but only the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth whereby humanity be saved.

Now what is happening among the ‘main stream churches"? By creating an environment of ecumenism among the churches and thereafter between religions they can subtly remove the name of Jesus from the churches. Even the monarchs of England, although they were once called "The Defenders of Faith", are ready to forego that nomenclature. It is not a problem for them now to have fellowship-prayer with Buddhist monks, Hindu devotees, Muslims, Sikhs, Jains and Christians. Christians of the mainline churches have forsaken the word of God, by removing the name of Jesus from their ecumenical prayer meetings.

Satan will be the happiest person if we skip the name of Jesus from our faith and prayers. He is happy that men pray only to God, Allah, Eswaran, Murugan, Parasakthi or Prajapati. He knows that his stronghold is destroyed if Jesus is our center of faith and life. He wants all men to perish without Jesus. His ultimate aim is to populate hell with men and women of this dispensation. It will be a sad day for Satan if men read the scripture saying: "I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me". (John 14:6). I wonder how the main line churches dare to say that all religions lead to heaven. These churches are indeed preparing or leading the people of God for the great tribulation. None of them will have eternal life. The spirit of the Antichrist is working among them. He that hath not the Son has no life.(John 3:36). He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. (John 3:36).

In 1 John 5:11 we read: "And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life and this life is in his Son. (v.12)He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. (v.13) These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

Bible Society on the Way to Ecumenism

Before we ponder on this matter, let us consider for a moment religious tolerance and ecumenism. This is in reference to the investigation of the activity of the Vishva Hindu Parishad by Dr.Aagaard of Arhus University Denmark. He confirms that the V.H.P. is in fact Hinduism’s international Missionary Council.[Page 148, Peace, Prosperity & the coming Holocaust, by Dave Hunt]. One of the primary goals listed in its constitution is: "To establish an order of missionary, both lay and initiate, for the purpose of propagating dynamic Hinduism representing the fundamental values of life comprehended by various faiths and denominations, including Buddhists, Jains, Sikhs, Lingayats open and manage or assist seminaries or centers for spiritual principles and practices of Hinduism in all parts of the world". And this is the organization that denounces Christians and Muslims for converting Hindus!

Dalai Lama-Ecumenism

The close co-operation and relationship between Hinduism and Buddhism in this plan of creating a new world order is revealed by the fact that the president of the 1979 V.H.P backed, missionary minded World Hindu Conference was none other than Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of Tibettan Buddhism. Yet whenever he tours the West, the Dalai Lama is widely received by church and political leaders as a spokesman for religious tolerance and ecumenism which simply means: converting everyone to the Hindu-Buddhist world view. This kind of tolerance has been called "the embrace that smothers". For example, Hinduism, in the name of tolerance for all religions, generously receives Jesus Christ into its all encompassing embrace. This, however, turns him into a Hindu Jesus, another avatar like Rama, or Krishna, the very antithesis of Biblical Jesus, who has been destroyed in the name of tolerance and ecumenism.

It is shocking indeed to note that the ecumenical Christians are now bringing the Bible to the level of Hindu Vedas and other mythological writings. It is more than incredible to note that a Bishop of the Marthoma Church in Kerala State S.India, presented a book ‘Bagavath Geet’ to a high government official at the opening ceremony of a literary entrepreneur. From this, one can come to a conclusion how the mainline churches have fallen away from the true faith. The following is another example to show how churches and para church organizations have fallen away from faith. Here is an extract from "Insight India July-September 1997":

"On August 2, 1997 a programme co-sponsored by Bible Society of India, Kerala was held at Kottayam and was inaugurated by Swami Samagramananda, the president of Rama Krishna Ashram.

Contrary to the wishes of its donors and against the directives of its founders, the Bible Society has now started advocating Hinduism.

In an earlier development, the BSI Kerala auxiliary circulated a letter signed by several brethren highly respected among us, stating that the apocrypha books shall not be added, the auxiliary has been working in a manner contrary to the spirit of the letter. Thus the allegation brought by Harvest Times that Roman Catholics are secretly being elevated to high positions by BSI, (Bible Society of India) Kerala. Close on the heels of this compromise comes a meeting promoting Hinduism.

On August 2, 1997, a programme co-sponsored by BSI Kerala was held at BSI auditorium, in Kottayam. The meeting attended by about 100 participants was graced by a number of dignitaries who belonged to churches that deny the historic Protestant truths. Swami Samagrananda, the president of Ramakrishna Asram, was present as a special invitee and inaugurated the meeting.

Though the theme of the one-day seminar was ‘Vedic Philosophy In Christian View", the announcers made it clear that the actual purpose of this seminar was to conduct a ‘dialogue’ with Hindus. It must not be forgotten that in the twentieth century, "dialogue" has been a tool in the hands of theological radicals for denying Fundamental Christian truths. This seminar seemed to make yet another contribution to this radical agenda.

A tape recording of Acharya Daya Prakash’s speech is readily available. The following is a dynamic summary of some of the statements made affirmatively in the seminar:

  1. "Christians should not invite Hindus to embrace the Christian message. This is not going to succeed, and it is ethically wrong".
  2. "Only 3% of Indians have embraced Christianity after 2000 years of preaching. Thus DO NOT hope and DO NOT pray for the remaining 97% to become Christians. This is NOT God’s will".
  3. "Instead of non-Christians becoming Christians, pray that they might become God’s children in whatever community/religion they are born. Please DO NOT insist upon conversion".
  4. "Everyone in India knows the way of salvation. Thus do not insist that they should be saved only through Christ. Thus during evangelism, never aim to lead non-Christians to the Christian faith."

According to the tenets of Protestant Reformation, the above statements are blasphemy. Since BSI was a Co-Sponsor of the Bible-denying seminar, believers should start taking action against the Bible Society.

Perhaps the first step would be to demand that a couple of the Bible-denying infidels be dismissed from the BSI. Note: (Through other sources, the writer of this articles understands that the meeting began with ‘Ohm’ chants).

Muslim Christian Alliance.

We have already seen how the mainstream Christians are drawn into New Age confusion away from Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Apostle Paul’s fear came into reality as we read:

"…..As the serpent beguiled Eve by his cunning, so your minds may be corrupted and seduced from whole hearted and sincere and pure devotion to Christ".(Amp.Version: II Cor.11:3) v..4)For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him."

The book "Christ in the Vedas" is full of lies and deception. To establish that lie, the author of the same book published another book containing a chapter titled "Christ in the Koran". The Bible-only believing Christians know that the Christ in the Koran is not the Christ crucified, buried, resurrected and ascended to the right hand of God. The worst part of that book, especially in its foreword, ‘Rescue at the Falls" is its declaration that all religions lead to Christ or heaven. The foreword of this book is written by one of America’s evangelical leaders, Dr.Lamar Vest. Dr.Lamar Vest is a former president of Lee College Cleveland, Tennesse, U.S.A., and former General Overseer of the Church of God. He is currently serving as Director of Media Ministries of the Church of God. Dr.Vest also serves as the member of the Executive Committee of the Americas Bible Society and as First Vice Chair of the National Association of Evangelicals in the U.S.A. By lending support to such heresy Dr Vest has betrayed the one and only Lord Jesus Christ.

Does the church fail God? Read on…………………….

This is an extract from the ‘Toronto Star’report that appeared in the daily newspaper a few years ago.

"Very Rev.Ernest Howse, a former United Church Moderator, was a controversial liberal preacher who did not believe in the physical resurrection of Jesus Christ. Rev.House died early yesterday morning at Wellesley Hospital. He was 90. He was elected Moderator [the highest hierarchical position in a church] of Canada’s largest Protestant denomination in 1964.

Rev.Cliff Elliot, a former Bloor Street United minister, described Rev.Howse as a ‘brilliant intelect’ and a very liberal preacher who was quite controversial in his day.

To say that he did not believe in physical resurrection of Jesus was quite a revolutionary thing to say out loud in his time, Elliot said. Born in Twillingate Nfld., the son of a Methodist minister, Rev.Howse covered the first Assembly of the World Council of Churches in Amsterdam for the Winnipeg Free Press. In 1954 he was one of the 25 Christians invited to meet leaders of the Muslim world in the first Muslim-Christian convocation in Lebanon. A year later in Cairo, he was elected Christian co-president of continuing committee on Muslim-Christian Co-operation.

He was such an elequent man who brought as honesty to everything, said Rev.David Allan, a minister at Bloor Street United during Rev.Howse’s last year there. Rev. Bruce McLeod, a former United Church Moderator who succeeded Rev.Howse at Bloor Street United Church, called Rev.Howse forthright and honest: a liberal theologian of the best kind.

If Christ is not resurrected in the physical form, Christ did not die. If Christ did not die you are still under sin. I wonder what message of hope people could hear at his funeral service which will be held at Bloor Street United, 300 Bloor St.(W) at 1.00 p.m on Thursday. The Bible says: ‘If Christ is not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins’ (1 Cor.15:17). No unrighteous person shall inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor.6:9). Those who deny the physical resurrection of Jesus are heretics. They which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God (Gal.5:21). The fearful, unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death (Rev.21:8).

The Bible speaks expressly that we should come out of from among the heretics and sinners and be ‘separated’. The book of Revelation chapter 18 speaks on the judgment that falls upon the fallen church. The Holy Spirit once again expressly warns: Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins’. (Rev.18: 4)

Turning now on the subject Islam and Christian Alliance, it is remarkable to notice the following under pages 176-182 from the book ‘The Zion connection’ by Elwood Mc.Quaid.

The Nature of Islam

Many of us have had the impression that Islam is the religion of the Arabs and have drawn certain conclusions based on this assumption. Although Islam did rise out of the Arabian desert in the seventh century A.D. and imposes Arabic cultural practices on its folowers, most Muslims in the world are not Arabs.

Iran, for example, is not an Arab country. Iranians are Persians whose language is Farsi, not Arabic. Indonesia and Pakistan, with well over a hundred million Muslims each, are not Arab countries.

Furthermore, Muslims are not unified as a religion; they have sects as do Judaism and Christianity. The two most familiar are the Sunni and Shite groups, which came into being after the death of Mohammad.

These facts are important when we consider that, although Muslims disagree on many things, often to the point of warring against one another, there is almost universal agreement on one subject: the existence of the State of Israel and a negative attitude toward the jewish people. Another major point of conflict for mainstream Muslims is the Western "Christian" influence, which is viewed as a corrupting force in the Islamic world.

Opinions regarding the Muslim invasion of the Western world are varied. While many observers are deeply disturbed by the trend, some are much less worried. They reason that most Muslims are peace-loving people with no intention of becoming a disruptive force in Western society. Many Muslims, they believe, have come west because of oppression by their more radical Muslim brethren. And it is undoubtedly true, as with many Germans and Japanese in America during World War II, that some Muslims have been subjected to undue criticism over acts perpetrated by radical Islamic terrorists.

Another view is that Muslims coming west will be assimilated into the culture and eventually become more like their American and European neighbors than their Middle Eastern spiritual brethren. In the process, this line of reasoning goes, they will drop many Islamic practices that are abhorrent to Western ways of thinking. Such reasoning establishes a rationale upon which to reach a comfort level while facing a people and a system that may very well be majority force in the future.

Before taking comfort in this line of reasoning, however, we should consider some basic facts about Islam.

Not a Pluralistic Religion

The fact that Islam is not a pluralistic religion escapes many people in America, where a religious ‘come one, come all’ way of life has prevailed. Freedom of religion is not an inalienable right in the islamic world, where conversion is strictly a one-way street.

When Jewish people see one of their number join another religion or cult, they may lament that person’s decision. The same can be said of the Christian community. But for a Muslim, conversion to another faith can be an entirely different matter. Classic Islamic law allows non-Muslims to be coverted to Islam but views conversion from Islam as a capital offense.

In America we consider Saudi Arabia a "moderate" Muslim country. But as our troops found during the Gulf War, Christian or jewish religious expressions and symbols were taboo in public. There is no tolerance of church planters or synagogue builders in Saudi Arabia. In fact, religions other than Islam are outlawed there.

On September 3,1992, a grisly execution was carried out at the marketplace in Qatif, Saudi Arabia. Pleas of innocence by Sadeq Malallah, 23, fell on deaf years, and he was publicly beheaded for apostasy. The Saudi Interior Ministry issued a statement saying that Malallah was convicted of "insulting God, the holy Koran, and Muhammad the prophet."

Muslim Christian Alliance

To assuage fears that where Islam reigns, one religion is supreme, Muslims have been proclaiming their commitment to pluralism. To prove their sincereity, they have gone so far as to promote a Muslim-Christian alliance.

A booklet produced by Muslims, however, exposes the underlying strategy. The booklet, Muslim-Christian Alliance, published in Istanbul, Turkey, contains revealing passages.

Moreover, the saying of the Prophet Muhammad further states that in the end of time, true, pious, devout Christians will unite with Muslims and put a great fight together against the common threat of Atheism. For the time being, true devout Muslims must unite not only with their coreligionists, coleagues and fellow brothers, but with true Christain believers by skipping any dispute since they have to unite urgently against the common enemy, aggressive, dreadful Atheism.

When this objective is achieved, the booklet continues:

Eventually, Christianity will be purified and gotten rid of all superstitions and misbeliefs and will unite with the true Islamic religion, thereby Christianity will be in a way transormed into Islam, and by adopting guidance from the Koran, the Christian community will become a follower of Islam and the Islamic religion will be the leader position. The true religion of Islam will gain a great power as a result of that unification.

The foregoing view expresses succinctly that where Islam becomes the majority, Jews and Christians are converted or relegated to inferior status.

No Division Between Secular and Sacred.

The concept of the division betweeen church and state does not exist in the world of Islam. One of the great conflicts currently being played out in the Middle East is between regimes viewed as "secular", such as was true in Iran before the fall of the Shah, and post-revolution Iran, which is ruled by religious clerics and Islamic law.

Author Robert Morey in his book The Islamic Invasion explains the Muslim attitude toward sacred-secular issues.

To the Muslim there is no "secular" realm where he is free from Islam. To the devout Muslim, Islam is all of life. In Islam there is no "separation of mosque and state" that compares to the "separation of church and state" that prevails in most Western countries. Islamic religion and politics are one. As Egyptian-born Victor Khalil points out: "Islam regulates every aspect of life, to the point that culture, religion, and politics in a Muslim country are practically inseparable."

Muhammad took the Arab culture around him, with all its secular and sacred customs, and made it into the religion of Islam.

Holy War (Jihad) is Sanctioned

Slay the idolators [non-Muslims] wherever ye find them, and take them captive, and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. Fight against such of those who have been given the Scripture as believe not in Allah nor the last Day…. Go forth, light-armed and heavy-armed, and strive with your wealth and your lives in the way of Allah! (Sura 9:5,29,41).

For the devout Muslim, dying in a holy war for territory or the honor of Allah means an immediate entry into paradise. Therefore atrocities such as Iran’s sending waves of children to certain death during its war with Iraq assured those children their place in heaven.

Wars against infidels (non-Muslim) are viewed as sacred ventures. For Islam the world is divided into two segments: the world of peace and the world of the sword. All that is Islamic is peace. All that is not waits to be conquered.

Thus all of Islam’s wars of agression against Israel were considered high priority campaigns for Allah and his followers. In their eyes, Israel occupies territory once held by Muslims, which is therefore sacred Muslim ground. Expelling the Jew is a matter of regaining the honour of Allah and reclaiming occupied Muslim land.

Why, during the Gulf War, did Sadaam Hussein lob scores of SCUD missiles at Israel while Israelis sat out the conflict? The premise is found in the priniciple of Jihad. To Sadaam’s way of thinking, fellow Muslims would find it difficult to stand against the man who was punishing the Zionist infidels. In short, he was making Jihad against a common foe. However, he miscalculated his fellow Muslims’ commitment to his holy cause. They were more interested in self-preservation that in Hussein’s ruse to break the coalition against him.

We have considered only a few basic elements of the Islamic faith, enough to demonstrate the chasm-like gulfs between Judeo-Christian concepts and those of Islam.

The Islamic State

Perhaps the most frightening prospect facing the political world today is the specter of a radical Islamic state - a religious state that sees every objective in life directed toward making the Koran, as Muslims interpret it, the only way of life. Knives, bombs, guns, and bludgeoning instruments provide the means to drive infidels and dissidents into the light of Islamic law.

For Jews, Christians, and anyone else remotely interested in living under some semblance of democratic rule with inherent religious freedoms, the very existence of a malevolent, Iranian-style states is an ominous threat. It is a threat that we can ill afford to ignore or to deal with responsibly. In the West, our affluence and self-preoccupation has tended to distract us from hearing or dealing with unpleasant matters. But radical Islam is not, as we might prefer to think, half a world away. It is in our midst, and Christians, Jews, and our way of life are in its gun-sights.

Lest you feel these words are unduly reactionary, listen to a few of the proponents of a pure Islamic world speaking from their bases in America, as recorded in the PBS documentary, Jihad in America, produced by Steven Emerson.

The only politics we understand is… shooting… The best thing is continued Jihad [holy war]. Nothing but Jihad. Even after the liberation of Afganistan- the leaders have agreed to continue Jihad… Even after the Islamic government. They will not stop. They will go to Palestine… to liberate it. Anyone who stands in the way… we will smash him. Any ruler who will not let us go, we will go by force. Jihad.

The Jihad, the fighting, is obligatory on you wherever you can perform it. Just as in America you must fast unless you are ill or on a voyage, so too must you wage Jihad.

Allah’s religion, be he praised, must offer scouts, must offer martyrs. Blood must flow. There must be widows. There must be orphans. Hands and limbs must be cut. And the limbs and blood must be spread everywhere in order that Allah’s religion stand on its feet.

The obligation of Allah is upon us to wage Jihad for the sake of Allah. It is one of the obligations which we must undoubtedly fulfill, and we conquer the lands of the infidels and spread Islam by calling the infidels to Allah. And if they stand in the way, then we wage Jihad.

Then sword is to absolutely be used and implemented, this is the principle.

Jihad that has to be implemented. It is not a thing that we speak of. It is a thing that we do.

Are these the rantings of members of the lunatic fringe? Or should we take these and their bedfellows at their word? For the answer, look east. Look at the daily newspapers on Israel, Holocaust, P.L.O, Egypt, Sudan, Algeria, etc.

New Age Philosophy

This is the product of Hinduism and Arianism. Multitudes, even Christians are being misled to believe a lie. Ultimately the world church and world religion will be merged under one super church. A false prophet leads this church. He is the second beast who causes all men on earth to receive a mark of the first beast (read Rev.13:11-18). This happens during the seven year period of the great tribulation. The glorious and victorious church shall be caught up first. Suddenly the son of perdition appears. The great tribulation begins. The prince shall enter into a covenant with Israel for seven years. During the first half of tribulation there are two groups of people who have no problem. Israel will have their freedom in their land with peace and security but at the middle of the seven years, the Antichrist breaks the covenant. Then the tribulation for Jewish nation will begin.

The second group is the World Church under the False Prophet. When the Anti-Christ finds that his purpose is served he and the ten horns destroy that great city the Babylon the mother of harlot which is the World Church. To see the rise and fall of the World Church please read Revelation chapters 17 and 18.

Then the question arises who could be the sufferers during the first half of tribulation? They are the remnant of the church. They were Christians but were not ready to meet the bridegroom. They tried to trim their lamp but the lamps died off as they had no oil in their lamps. They that were ready entered into the bride-chamber and the door was closed. Multitude will have to die as martyrs without accepting the mark of the beast and they will be resurrected between the opening of the sixth and seventh seals.(Rev.7:9&14). In order to avoid that devastating experience and to escape the great tribulation, let us come out of the mainstream churches which will ultimately be taken over by the False Prophet.

Following the breaking of the covenant, the Anti-Christ shall invade into Jerusalem and the greatest holocaust will take place. Jeremiah speaks on this as ‘Jacob’s sorrow. However, only a remnant shall survive the great tribulation. They are the people who would call upon the name of Jesus(Mesaiah)for deliverance. Then they will look to whom they have pierced. Then only the prophecy of Jesus will be fulfilled. "For I say unto you, ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord". This happens at the opening of the seventh seal when the last of the seven angels sounded the trumpet. That is the time when the kingdoms of this world become the kingdom of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.

When Jesus returns to the earth the whole armies of God are with him. The church, the bride will have pre-eminence at that time. The bride shall sit on the judgment seats and rule and reign the world with righteousness. Are we ready?

"Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the lord, and touch not the unclean thing: and I will receive you: (v.18) And will be a Father unto you and ye shall be my sons and daughters saith the Lord Almighty". (II Cor.6:14-18)

Materials within[]brackets are rendered by the Editor.

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Ecumenism with Roman Catholics

My Testimony of Working with Charismatic Catholics

Bill Scudder Dayton, Ohio, USA
Azusa@aol.com

I would like to say first of all that I am not a Cecessionist. I do not believe the Gifts of the Holy Spirit ceased with the New Testament Apostles. They are available to the Church of God today.

For those who do not believe the above, you are still my brother or sister in the Lord if you believe that we are saved by grace alone through faith alone on account of Christ alone. What I am about to tell you is not 'politically correct' and I will be labeled as 'intolerant' or maybe even a 'basher' by some people. I love Catholics, as I do anyone else, but it is the doctrine's of Rome that is deceiving the Roman Catholics.


**************

President of the FGBMF-Peoria, Illinois

It started when I was voted in as President of a local chapter of the Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International. We had a dinner meeting once a month and a breakfast meeting once a month. At the dinner meeting we would usually invite a Christian businessman to give his testimony. I also held a Bible study and prayer meeting in my home.

Some Catholics began to come to my home prayer and Bible study meeting, including a priest. The first thing this priest did was kneel in front of me, as if I could impart something to him. Later I knew that he wanted me to pray that he would receive tongues. I became a friend with this Priest and we began to attend other meetings together. More Catholics started coming to all of our meetings and I invited a Catholic professor from Ball State University to come and speak to our fellowship.

It wasn't long until many of these Catholics were seeking and receiving tongues. At the time I just took it for granted that they were already saved and were receiving the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. Priests, nuns and others were beginning to receive tongues. I was guilty of believing that tongues was an indication that we shared the same Holy Spirit experience, and the same Jesus. This was due to my ignorance of the 'Gospel according to Rome,' for which I have no excuse.

I was invited to teach a course one night a week for six weeks in a Roman Catholic Parish, St. Monica In East Peoria, Illinois. Priests, nuns and others were present. I taught on the gift of Salvation. At the time I was not prepared for what I was confronting and because all present at the meetings deemed themselves already saved because of the Roman Catholic religion. I don't believe I addressed the subject in the right way. There was a spirit of bondage given to them by Rome and they had a dependence on their infant baptism and other doctrines of Rome which nullify the Gospel.

I was invited to attend Catholic Charismatic prayer meetings at Bradley University as the only non-Catholic present.

One of the Catholic prayer groups were speaking in tongues and receiving unbiblical interpretations of a sinful nature, supposedly coming direct from Mary, 'the mother
of Jesus'. Which was further proof that the unsaved were receiving 'tongues' from a spirit other than God. Charismatic Catholics often become more devoted to Mary after receiving a tongue.

UPDATE---APRIL 1, 2003. This week Richard Shakarian, president of the FGBMFI is in the Vatican with those who continue to develop the Catholic Charismatic Renewal. The deception continues as this unity is based on experience only and not on the word of God.

MARY BECOMES THE FOCUS


Many Catholic Charismatics have migrated to Mary, whom they see as the Holy Spirit's 'more interesting spouse.' The Catholic Charismatic fellowship at Dayton University reported to the news media that since their 'experience' they have been giving more devotion to Mary. In the statement nothing was said about Christ.

That does not mean that we do not honor Mary at all for her physical part in the birth of
Christ but we cannot venerate her more than the scriptures allow or make her in any way Spiritually responsible for our salvation.

Universalism

A Catholic Priest who was a sought after speaker in the Catholic Charismatic movement and spoke at many FGBMFI chapters, was speaking one night to a large group during one of our FGBMFI conventions. After his talk he gave an altar call to come and be 'born again.' I had an uneasy feeling, and after the service was over, I approached to ask him some questions. I asked him if Jesus was the only way to be saved, and he said very plainly, 'NO.' I asked, 'Do you have to be born again and believe in Jesus Christ to be saved and he said 'NO.' What did he mean by 'born again'?

It was obvious he meant that if you received tongues or any kind of subjective feeling, that this was proof of being born again, having nothing to do with being born from above by the Spirit of God or believing in Christ alone for salvation.

At that point I rebuked him for what he said and he got very angry and began to shake. I reported him to FGBMFI but nothing came of it. There are several kinds of Roman Catholics. The Catholic church is not as united as they would like everyone to believe. There is the liberal that believes God is the Father of all and no-one is lost and the one that believes that if you do good works and are baptised you will be saved and the conservative Catholic that believes that only through the Roman Catholic church can you be saved. Then there are all those in between.

((The Roman Catholic religion in its quest for ecumenism is now playing both sides as is seen in Vatican II. ""....

An article published by the Dallas Morning News on Saturday March 20th, 1999 of an ecumenical meeting held in Dallas, Thanksgiving World Assembly, shows the other side.

What is important about this meeting is that it was attended by a Nigerian Cardinal of the Roman Catholic religion named Francis Arinze.

Many people think that Arinze, the Pope’s Deputy for Outreach, is heir apparent to John Paul II. But even if he is not, his comments are chilling and revealing.

An illustration of Roman Catholic ecumenism, which ices out the Gospel and makes mockery of the ministry of Jesus Christ, is found in Arinze’s answer to the question, "Can you still get to heaven without accepting Jesus?"His answer, not surprising, but chilling and ominous, is: "Expressly, yes!"

He says"".....Gods grant of salvation includes not only Christians but Jews,Muslims, Hindus and people of good will." ))

WHAT DOES THE POPE HAVE TO SAY ABOUT THIS?


Note the following quote (Dallas Morning News, 12-09-00):

“Tempering a controversial Vatican declaration on salvation, Pope John Paul II said Wednesday that all who live a just life will be saved even if they do not believe in Jesus Christ and the Roman Catholic Church.”

By Peggy Polk
and Robert Nowell  

VATICAN CITY, Dec. 6 (RNS)--Tempering a controversial Vatican declaration on salvation, Pope John Paul II said Wednesday that all who live a just life will be saved even if they do not believe in Jesus Christ and the Roman Catholic Church.

The Pope blatantly contradicts the Bible


© 2000 Discerning the Times Digest and NewsBytes
On March 26, 2000.
The popular Catholic Pope John Paul II blatantly contradicted the Bible on December 7 when he proclaimed "Heaven is open to all as long as they are good," even for "those who ignore Christ and his Church." The Bible clearly teaches only those who have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior will go to heaven and the Father.

The December 8, Electronic Telegraph reported the Pope as saying that "Heaven is open to all as long as they are good."

POPE'S WORDS BEFORE THE "ANGELUS", VATICAN CITY, OCT. 1, 2000 (ZENIT.org)
3. The Holy Spirit is not only present in other religions through authentic expressions of prayer. “The Spirit’s presence and activity”, as I wrote in the Encyclical Letter Redemptoris missio, “affect not only individuals but also society and history, peoples, cultures and religions” (n. 28).Normally, “it will be in the sincere practice of what is good in their own religious traditions and by following the dictates of their own conscience that the members of other religions respond positively to God’s invitation and receive salvation in Jesus Christ, even while they do not recognize or acknowledge him as their Saviour (cf. Ad gentes, nn. 3, 9, 11)” (Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue

***************

In spite of the mistakes of being too ecumenical with those that do not beleive the Gospel, the FGBMFI has been and is being used of God, and many have been saved through it's efforts, but I and others, have been guilty of an ecumenical spirit and unity at any cost. We have given a false hope of security to those who needed the truth of salvation.

Catholics no longer a mission field?

Some Evangelicals are now saying that Roman Catholics are no longer considered to be a mission field since they are 'Christians', as evidenced in the document ECT,(Evangelicals and Catholics together).

What a sad commentary to our brothers and sisters in Latin countries, and others who have laid down their lives for the Gospel, and have seen millions of Roman Catholics believe the Gospel. The future of evangelism hangs in the balance.

In my eight years of working with Charismatic Catholics, I have come to the following conclusions.

I had been naive and had neglected to really look into the doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church to see what they really believed about the doctrine of Salvation by Grace alone through faith alone on account of Christ alone. I took it for granted that they believed the Gospel of the Bible. Historically, and conversely, the Roman Catholic Church teaches as dogma, that justification is conferred through her sacraments, and that it consists of inner righteousness whereby a man, it is stated, becomes 'just within himself.' The Church of Rome condemns the Biblical doctrine of justification by faith alone. (Council of Trent)

Any non-Catholic Church that held the doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church would be considered a 'Cult' by many of the same people who are seeking unity with the Catholics.

I have discovered that most Protestants do not know what the Gospel is 'according to Rome'! And are easy prey for Roman Catholic apologists because they do not know how to defend sola scriptura or because of their extreme armenism. Do we once again need a reformation in the 'Protestant'Evangelical Churches?

It was the standard practice of the FGBMFI to tell Roman Catholics to stay in the Catholic Church so that they could witness to others. I believe this was a very dangerous attitude in that I found those who stayed eventually were lost to the Roman Church once again for various reasons or because they had not been truly born again. I believe most of the ones who had trusted in Christ alone for salvation came out of the Roman Catholic Church.

You cannot stay in a Church, without consequences, that denies we are saved by what Christ did outside of us, and not what we can do to become worthy inside.

"Solo Christo"

"Solo Christo" was one of the cries of the Protestant Reformation. Translated from the Latin, it means "Christ Alone."

In these times, the growing tendency to emphasize feelings and experiences at the expense of sound doctrine is presenting the world with a 'feel-good' religious community, the boundaries of which grow more ephemeral with every new ecumenical pronouncement. This is especially true among Roman Catholics and some Evangelical and some Charismatic Christians. I want to emphasize that not all Evangelicals and Pentecostals are being deceived but some are.

And the lines become more blurred, so that now in some ecumenical meetings, New Agers, Universalists, Roman Catholic as well as true born again Christians such as Evangelicals and Pentecostals are coming together to celebrate their oneness in a quote, 'Common Experience.' This is the great deception.

Although speaking in tongues can be valid experience from God it is not always of the Holy Spirit. It can be counterfeited. Satan has counterfeits of every Gift of God. You can receive an experience without being saved, and when this happens it leads to many problems. The major problem is a false sense of security that you are saved, and leads you further away from the true Gospel and many times into the occult. It has been documented that most spiritulists are former Catholics.

I believe most of the Catholics were seeking a sign and not Salvation, and they received a false tongue. If we accept everybody as brothers and sisters because they speak in tongues, then we are heading down a slippery slope, Catholic or other wise.
(Spiritual experience ALONE can never be the basis for unity.
Unity must be based on sound DOCTRINE.

"If anyone comes with another doctrine, do not receive him....for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds."
Holy Bible 2 John 10-11 KJV.


Even though the above scripture taken in context applies to other heresies, such as the denial that Christ came in the Flesh, I believe it
can just as well be applied to the Gospel of salvation, since they are related and cannot be separated.

"Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage."
Galatians 5:1. KJV

Bill Scudder
Dayton, Ohio, USA Azusa@aol.com

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