Monday, July 10, 2017

Do Christians Like the Whole Bible?

All of the Bible is the truth and all of it is good.  It comes as a package.  You don't accept the Bible and then not accept all of it.  You accept all of it or none of it.  It is like the truth in that way.  There is one truth.  It is the truth whether you like it or not.  Just because you don't like it doesn't mean that you get to choose your own truth.

The Bible is not a buffet restaurant intended for choosing what you like and discarding the rest.   None of it reads that way.  An illustration closer to how scripture reads would be the instructions for putting together an intricate model.  Each individual piece fits in one and only one place.  Every piece is necessary to the whole and each place where each piece goes is also an important feature.  That isn't an exact analogy, but much, much closer than the buffet table that God's Word has become.

Our church is very, very different than most of the evangelical churches in our area and even different than the fundamentalists ones.  All the of the differences between us and them relate to ways that churches have capitulated on Bible doctrine and practice.  Our church still believes and practices where the church has caved and mostly for "cultural reasons."  Today you will read, hear, or see that a church is conservative doctrinally and liberal culturally.  Now very often if not most often, if the doctrine is right, the cultural issues don't matter to them.

Scripture teaches the church is different than the world.  Where a church very often if not most often suffers today is not in its doctrine, but where it contrasts with the world.  The light of the church shines through its practice and especially where the world varies from it.  This is especially and mostly seen in cultural issues.  By that I mean such as dress, music, entertainment, recreation, literature, food and drink, art, marriage, education, manners, and roles, among some others.  All of these relate to morality and righteous behavior.

Here's what has happened and at one time, most professing Christians knew it was happening.  In the 18th and 19th centuries, the differences in culture between the church and the world were little, because of the influence of the church on the culture.  This was a way that the light of Christianity shown on the United States.  The world, however, began to change away from the Christian culture at a more rapid pace.  The churches stood against that.

As the world changed and the differences between the church and the world became more drastic, churches began to modify to accommodate the world.  Those that did were more popular.  Other churches preached against the world, but then also against those other churches.  Finally the churches that weren't moving with the world became the minority.  They were not only castigated by the world but also by a majority of the churches.  Those churches have dwindled until there are very, very few that stand where they once did.

True doctrines have slid with the wrong practices, including warped aesthetics and inordinate affections.  Now unity might be expected over minimal doctrine and on almost nothing in the culture.  You can hardly tell the difference in most churches between the church and the world.  To conform to that, the gospel is then changed to something that excludes resulting behavior.  Even if a church hasn't slid on most of the doctrine, it won't separate from a church that has moved.  Churches have become a hodge-podge of belief and behavior. You can't rely on the church anymore for stability for truth, goodness, and beauty.  It's stopped giving guidance and instead reflected what is happening around it.

God hasn't changed though.  He still wants all of His Word practiced, every bit of it. Christians now don't like the whole Bible and they don't even have to like all of it.  They just have to believe the parts that are "essential," which excludes almost everything in the way of practice.

Scripture still has authority as much as it ever has, but churches don't respect the authority of scripture.  They follow it in the areas they think they'll be benefited.  They know the Bible has lost its authority with them, but they still advocate for it in those areas they think they can say are plain enough.  It's not convincing, so churches have stopped attempting to convince people with the truth and now are doing it with social and "spiritual" aspects that they hope will transmit to others the possibility of something divine.

If you are going to preach the Bible, you have to preach all of it, believe all of it, practice all of it, and apply all of it, using its principles.  It is as authoritative, as true, and as good as it ever has been. The Bible applies to every area of life, including the cultural issues.  Christians applied them in the past and we have historical literature on how they did.  Those practices still matter to God.

Churches that have given up on cultural issues are in trouble with God.  Really, they have invented a whole new god who will accept their own personal dislike of a lot of scripture that they don't want to practice. Their god is good with that.

To go along with the perversion of the culture, churches have to go along with new definitions of love, marriage, and sin, among many other words or concepts.  They do that.  One is a redefinition of grace.  If you do believe and practice the whole Bible, because you do believe it is all God's Word and you like the whole Bible, you'll be called a legalist by other professing Christians, churches, and church leaders.  This is to smear you or taint you with something that makes you look like you are less than Christian.  However, they are the ones who have moved off of the biblical truth about grace.

Almost all of those who throw around the word legalist see grace as a garbage can. It is a fake or placebo grace that doesn't change you in a scriptural way.  It allows you live like the world, but be given credit like you are living a holy life.

True grace cleans you up and empowers you to live according to all of scripture.  The fake gracers reduce scripture down to what they think they can keep in their own strength.  They are depending on themselves, so it isn't even the grace of God.  The idea of grace is to minimize or reduce the teachings of scripture, and then let "grace" take care of the rest.  You don't have to live it, but grace will do that for you.  It's not grace.  It's a form of left winged legalism.

People who want to live like they want will gladly accept a new, perverted form of grace. They'll believe they have the grace of God, like Charismatics believe they are speaking in actual tongues or that they are seeing actual miracles.  They don't.  God's grace changes someone to live a holy life, not to conform to the world.

God is a good God, so everything in the Bible is good.  Most professing Christians don't think so anymore.  They are discontent with God and His Word and have reinvented their Christianity to fit the lifestyle that they want to live.


Dave said...

I know quite a few who profess Christ as their Saviour and do not believe all the words of Scripture.

Take for example, the person who believes wholeheartedly that Christ was born of a virgin, but does not believe that their salvation is secure in Him because of Christ's finished work on the cross. These include Catholics, Nazarenes, Bible Missionaries, Pentecostals and the Churches of Christ.

Then there's the person who believes that Christ died for their sins, but that there is nothing to save them from...Seventh Day Adventists, who deny a literal Hell fire.

Finally, there's the person who believes that salvation is an offer ( as in "you do this, and I will do that" ) that can be gained by an act of the will, rather than a gift of God's grace given without restriction by Him to whomsoever He wishes.

You said, "If you are going to preach the Bible, you have to preach all of it, believe all of it, practice all of it, and apply all of it, using its principles. "

I agree. ALL of the Bible is to be believed, if one has eternal life:
"But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." ( Matthew 4:4 )

Belief of His words is proof that a person is saved:

" My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: 28 and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand." ( John 10:27-28 )

" He that is of God heareth God’s words:..." ( John 8:47a )

Does your church believe and teach both Acts 13:48 as meaning what it says:

" And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed."

... as well as Romans 10:17?

" So then faith [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God."

Does it believe and teach 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14:

" But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: 14 whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ." well as Romans 10:9?

" that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."

Does it teach that salvation is a gift ENTIRELY of God's grace, or does it instead teach that man has to do something in order to obtain the gift? For example, I often hear people say that "salvation is 100% of God", and then turn right around and say, " but you have to believe in order to become saved."

If it does teach salvation by God alone, then that would put you in a VERY small crowd, and believing ALL of God's word. If it doesn't, then that puts you in a very large crowd, believing and teaching very similarly to all of the same churches that I listed above ( and many more ), whose gospel is conditioned on the will of men and states to people that something THEY can do will result in their salvation.

Prominent preachers who teach or have taught that salvation is dependent upon some effort of men include Billy Graham, Billy Sunday, Dwight Moody, Dwight Pentecost, Jack Hyles, John R. Rice, David Cloud, Dave Hunt, Cooper Abrams, Samuel Gipp, Charles Finney, Jack Graham and Jerry Falwell.

Prominent preachers that have taught that salvation was entirely of God include Jonathan Edwards, Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Rolf Barnard, the apostle Paul and Jesus Christ Himself:

" And he said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father." ( John 6:65 )

Where do you stand?

Kent Brandenburg said...


Faith isn't a work.


Dave said...


Faith is a gift from God ( Ephesians 2:8-9 ).
Belief is a gift from God ( Philippians 1:29 ).
The knowledge of the mysteries of heaven are a gift from God ( Matthew 13:11, Mark 4:11, Like 8:10 ).
Salvation is not by the will of man ( John 1:13 ), it is BY grace THROUGH faith, not BY faith ( Ephesians 2:8-9 ). Faith is the EVIDENCE of things not seen ( Hebrews 11:1 ), not the means by which a person can gain salvation.

Please read Acts 13:49 again. It means exactly what it says.

Anyone who teaches salvation by some effort of men, whether that effort is belief, faith, or any other vehicle like works, is teaching salvation conditioned upon man's will and that is a false gospel. That is not how God saves anyone. For example, a person is not saved because they believe...they believe because they are saved. He told the Jews why they did not believe on Him:

" But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you." ( John 10:26 ) Notice He didn't tell them that they were not of His sheep because they didn't believe, but the other way around.

Sir, God saves men, they don't "cooperate" or save themselves by doing something.

Dave said...

You said, " Faith isn't a work."

Sure it is... but it is entirely a work of God, Mr. Brandenburg:

"Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent." ( John 6:29 )

It is a work of God for someone to believe on Christ. Appealing to the will and telling someone that if they will believe on Christ, they can gain salvation by believing, is not what the Bible says, and the apostle Paul never preached this. He preached Christ and Him crucified, and made the same promise God does:

Whosoever believeth on Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life. It was never an offer, but it always was and is a promise and a declaration.

Finally, there is nothing about the gift of salvation that is dependent upon mankind's response. Again, salvation is 100% of God. If it wasn't, then that would potentially give men something to boast about, and God will not have men to glory in His presence, except for His grace to them.

His blessings to you, sir.

Kent Brandenburg said...

Hi Dave,

What is your point? You're talking like you've got some special insight on salvation or the gospel, but you contradict yourself and scripture numerous times. You want to make sure that salvation is all of God to the point where someone can't be saved by believing in Jesus Christ. That is confusing to people, which isn't good in salvation. All of this is in answer to a post that really has little to do with your comments. Almost nothing to do with what I wrote.

I tell you faith isn't a work. You say, it is a work. That sounds like someone who just wants to disagree, just wants to contradict. Later you call it a gift, so you yourself say it isn't a work.

What's your real point here, Dave? Please be concise. I want it in one sentence.

Dave said...


The title of your article is what I am commenting on. Please accept my apologies for anything else you may have gotten out of this exchange.

To me, your church isn't much different in its gospel presentation or in its beliefs than the ones you mentioned above...only in its practices. You talk about true doctrine, yet from my perspective, you do not even understand the Gospel and the extent of the grace of God towards His children.

I will refrain from commenting on your blog in the future.

Good day.