In his final message in the aforementioned series entitled “Christian,” Southern Baptist mega-church Pastor Andy Stanley said that Christians “have a “branding problem” in that they are viewed as being “‘judgmental, homophobic, moralists’ who think they are the only ones going to heaven and who ‘secretly relish the fact that everyone else is going to hell’” (“Andy Stanley Avoids Gay Issue,” Christian Post, May 6, 2012). The fact is that it would be impossible to obey the Bible and still avoid this willful misperception on the part of unbelievers. God’s Word commands us not only to avoid the unfruitful works of darkness but also “to reprove them” (Ephesians 5:11), and the Christian preacher is to “rebuke with all authority” (Titus 2:15). The world does not take kindly to godly reproof. We are to follow Jesus’ compassionate and holy example by proclaiming man’s lost condition before a thrice holy God, warning men of eternal hell and stating that unless they repent and are born again they cannot be saved (Mark 9:43-47; Luke 13:3-5; John 3:3-5). We are God’s ambassadors to proclaim that God commands that all men everywhere repent of their sin and idolatry (Acts 17:30). This type of preaching will always result in the false charge that believers are self-righteous, judgmental moralists. Jesus is love incarnate, but the world hated Him and for the most part rejected Him. He said that the world hated Him because He testified that its works were evil (John 7:7). The world also hated and slandered the Lord’s apostles, and nothing has changed. If Andy Stanley were to obey the previous commands and speak God’s Word plainly and without compromise, if he would reprove the foolish pop culture and its works of darkness instead of playing footsie with it, he would not have a mega-church, of course, but he would please God and that is worth more than anything else. Andy Stanley well represents “conservative evangelicalism” today. It is filled to the brim with heretics who have a name that they live but are dead (Revelation 3:1). The fact that so many “fundamentalists” and independent Baptists are attracted to evangelicalism is evidence of their deep spiritual compromise.
(Friday Church News Notes, May 11, 2012, www.wayoflife.org, firstname.lastname@example.org, 866-295-4143)
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