Gospel, Discernment, and Passion 2013!

It is my prayer that this post will prove to be a connection between the matters of presenting the gospel and that of the area of discernment among the body of Christ.

First, I note that each contributor has a different set of giftings for which I am very thankful. When The Pilgrim was the primary owner of the blog, we were blessed in the addition of good men who I believe continue to take Defending Contending in a solidly, biblical direction. Chris, who took over from The Pilgrim, has a huge heart for evangelism and outreach as does Bill Phillips. Manfred, Fourpointer, and Abiding Through Grace have helped to bring a solid reformed perspective to this part of the blogosphere. The Pilgrim and I set a tone for world missions and also the need of discernment in the Body of Christ.

Yet, each contributor is only human. We make mistakes, and further, we all have areas of sin that the Holy Spirit has to work to correct in our lives. None of us have arrived, nor would we ever want to portray such a picture. As our long-time readers will remember, there are times that we have each had to ask forgiveness for something we wrote, maybe that was in haste or in anger. Through all of this we continue to move forward and desire to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ.

For the record, we are not always in agreement with our thought processes, nor with a particular point of doctrine that we seek to understand. However, there is no question that we all love the Savior and desire truth in the inward parts of our heart and soul. My fellow contributors may not even be in full agreement with this post, but I believe I can safely assert that we all have the same desires – purity in the church and a church that is fervent about spreading the gospel message!

Recently, both Chris and I have posted a few articles that have dealt with two areas that are not diametrically opposed to each other. Conversely, they are actually a very necessary part of how we are to operate within the confines of a local church setting. His approach and strong desire for the presentation of the gospel has been matched by my own desire to have a spirit of discernment as we present our case before the thousands of readers we see come to DefCon every week.

In the midst of this, some have questioned our decisions either to bring a spotlight on a pastor, or in not going far enough in our condemnation. This is my main reason for writing this, especially in light of what we are seeing take place at Passion 2013 right now in Atlanta, Georgia.

From a gospel perspective, I believe that if more people were being presented with a Christ-centered message versus a man-centered message that there would be far fewer who were in attendance. The problem with Passion 2013 is that those in attendance are being driven by emotion. Further, they are seeing this event being openly endorsed by men such as David Platt and Justin Taylor. This event is not only being endorsed by well-known ministers, but men who should know better are also involved in preaching there such as John Piper.

The question we are faced with is, “Does such an endorsement automatically place men like Piper, Platt, or Taylor under such a cloud that we have the right to call their salvation into question and classify them as unbelievers?”

This is where the discernment perspective must come in. There are wolves who have always sought to infiltrate the church of the spotless Lamb of God. There will always be wolves. There can be no doubt that the salvation of a person is a matter that ultimately can only be known between that individual and the Sovereign God of the Universe. However, the Scriptures make it abundantly clear that we can be fruit inspectors and that by the works of others we can have a clearer picture as to their spiritual condition or lack thereof.

Taking this to another level, we must also consider discipline as found in Matthew 18. First, we must recognize that discipline is to be practiced between fellow believers, but that some aspects can only be effected in a local church setting. As an example, if I have offended another brother contributor, I have the responsibility before God to make that right. However, should things heat up and we have a falling out, neither my church, nor the church where the fellow contributor is in fellowship, have the right to bring another under discipline if they are not a member or in fellowship with that particular assembly.

Therefore, for those who lack in discernment in evangelical circles, we at DefCon can only bring warnings to others. We cannot bring ultimate judgment against another. Further, many seek to use Matthew 18 to make the point that if we have not taken our grievances to that person in question that we have no right to make public our concerns. This also comes from a poor understanding of this passage. The level of discipline is first to be enacted and finalized at the level to which it is either private or public knowledge. For example, if a brother contributor and I have a disagreement and we resolve the matter without it going public in any form or fashion, it goes no further. Restoration has taken place.

However, a person who has a public ministry and has openly stated where he stands or is showing a lack of discernment has taken the matter to a public level. There is no more private conversations necessary for the testimony at stake is no longer just a personal one, but is a dispersion against the Bride of Christ before a lost world.

Either way, at no point, does Matthew 18 give us the freedom to state to the world that the person who is offending others is an unbeliever. We are told and given the right by Christ that if such a person goes all the way to the final step of discipline that they are to be placed outside of the protection of the local church. They are then to be TREATED as one who is an unbeliever. The entire process is to continue giving forth the message to them and seek to provide restoration. This was a primary purpose for the writing of 1 and 2 Corinthians. Matthew 18 was fully enacted, but 2 Corinthians was necessary for the church to see their error in not admitting the brother back into fellowship. In this case, the man in question was in grievous sin that was not even found among the amoral society of Romans. Yet, at no point in either book does Paul question this man’s salvation!

So, let us look further at the events currently unfolding at Passion 2013. There are some there who are teaching another gospel and are openly teaching or practicing or promoting heresy. This, in my estimation, includes Louie Giglio. It also includes groups or individuals that are practicing doctrines of demons. This group would include David Crowder, Christy Nockels and the band Jesus Culture.

A thorough expose on these groups can be found at Apprising.Org, and I highly recommend any person with questions to go and read my Christian brother’s blog posts before making any negative comments about my inclusion of these groups or individuals. Suffice it to say for now that these music artists are highly charismatic and further give evidence that Jesus is merely a byword, not a Person Who has changed their way of life. For further information, I would highly recommend reading the following post as well on the connections of those leading Passion 2013.

In addition, you have a woman, Beth Moore, who is clearly in contradiction to the teaching of God’s Word. She is considered an elder, teaches and preaches to men, but further is openly involved in the Roman Catholic teaching of contemplative mysticism. This type of meditation and mindless repetitious prayers were openly condemned by our Savior during His earthly ministry. Beth continues to refuse to be corrected and has continued a slide further into the acceptance of Roman Catholics as being on the same road to heaven as Christianity.

The Bible makes it clear that there is only one way to heaven, and what the Roman Catholic system teaches is not salvation by faith through grace alone. Beth is no longer just endorsing religions such as Roman Catholicism. Her teaching shows that she is promoting a completely different gospel. While we would pray and hope that she will see the error of her ways, we can only conclude at this point with the words of the apostle Paul in Galatians 1 – if anybody, even an angel, preach ANY OTHER gospel than what we have preached to you, then let them be accursed. This is not my words, nor is it my decision. Her actions and words bring condemnation upon her and her ministry.

So what about John Piper? Personally, I have learned much from several of his earlier books with the exception of his teaching of “Christian” hedonism. A very poor choice of terminology and shaky theology at best is at play here. However, in more recent times, there have been growing questions about his connections, his endorsements, and I am convinced that this has produced questions about where his theology is changing to from books such as “Future Grace.”

His endorsements are wrong, and I have not seen one thing that convinces me that he is preaching at Passion 2013 with the intention of bringing biblical clarity to the thousands who are gathered. Actually, he now openly endorses the ungodliness that is in place, holds hands with Beth Moore, and has even been captured on video practicing contemplative mysticism! This certainly does bring him into question and at this time, I believe we are only left with two conclusions. First, his lack of discernment continues to drive him down the road towards full-blown apostasy at the expense of biblical truth. Second, while I am not prepared to question whether he has ever come to a point of saving faith, I am prepared to learn from the words of John MacArthur, who has in the past noted that a person who evidences no change, has no fruit, and continues in full-blown apostasy must be concerned as to whether they were ever saved to begin with.

Sadly, the problem is compounded by the inclusion of heretics like Judah Smith, who co-pastors a church with his wife in Washington. His connection includes preaching at Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church and Mark Driscoll fully endorsed this event. Yes, this is the same Driscoll and Warren that are so openly welcomed and share pulpits with John Piper. These men all have the same thing in common – they are students of humanist authors like Peter Drucker, who died as a heathen pagan – without Christ.

My prayer is that those who like Chan, Piper, Platt, and Taylor, who have preached and taught the truth will wake up and see the truth. The truth is that they are being sucked into the whirlpool of expediency, the whirlpool that says numbers are more important than truth, the whirlpool that produces ever-increasing numbers of false conversions, and the whirlpool of apostasy that threatens to swallow all the other whirlpools like the black holes of space. Soon no spiritual light will shine forth from their ministries for error, heresy, and the doctrines of demons will swallow any glimmer from view, or it will ultimately prove that there was no light to begin with.

nouturn For now, I would share the words from the apostle Paul as seen in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15, “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.”

Today, we MUST have the true gospel of Jesus Christ being preached to the world. The church has an awesome responsibility to reach out to the world and share in love the truth of God’s Word. The world must hear that there is ONLY one way to heaven and that is through the finished work of Jesus Christ.

However, preachers, pastors and ministers of the gospel must not only practice spiritual discernment, but they must also teach their people how to discern between what is right and what is wrong. Conferences like Passion 2013 are filled with thousands who are either not saved, or they fall under the category of being let down by the men who were entrusted with their spiritual well-being.

Pastors who have not stood up to this nonsense should repent for putting their people in harm’s way. Parents who have allowed their children to attend such a conference should also repent for putting their children, whom they were given to protect, in the way of the forces of hell that seek to blind the minds of their precious gifts. Men like Francis Chan, David Platt, Justin Taylor, and John Piper have a responsibility to take a stand no matter what it costs in the way of book sales, or affiliations, or even the numbers of followers they have garnered. If there is a time for men like these to take a stand and apologize for their lack of discernment and for misleading the body of Christ around the world by their open endorsements of heresy, charismania, and yes, even the doctrines of demons being openly endorsed by people like Beth Moore, Mark Driscoll, Louie Giglio and others.

But then again, Paul warned us in 2 Thessalonians that there would come a time before the return of the Lord that apostasy would take place within the church. Maybe this is what we are seeing. I fear for those who have failed in their calling and with their testimony. I fear for what they will face when they stand before the Lord in judgment.

May we not pride ourselves on who we are, nor that we have not fallen ourselves! Brothers and sisters, may our thoughts remain on the Author and Finisher of our faith. May we remember that but for the grace of God, we could be the ones that are where these others now find themselves.

Soli Deo Gloria,

Mark – TJM

226 thoughts on “Gospel, Discernment, and Passion 2013!

  1. Excellent article TJM. We are reminded that we must be ever vigilant not only in the proclamation of the gospel, but in discerning those who would either teach it falsely or falter in defending it.


  2. “Discernment is not simply a matter of telling the difference between what is right and wrong; rather it is the difference between right and almost right.” -Charles Spurgeon. Thanks for your encouragement, Chris.


  3. I was a combat engineer in the Army many years ago, The engineers taught me a method of determining if the soil was fit to build on that has served well in encouraging Christians to properly discern between right doctrine and almost right doctrine. If the soil is not clearly good or bad, put a small amount in your mouth, between your tongue and teeth. If it’s gritty, like salt, it’s good dirt. It it’s smooth, like powdered sugar, it’s clay and/or organic and cannot be built on.

    To be good Bereans, we must be diligent and not accept “almost sound” doctrine. Professing Christians with a credible witness of having been redeemed who teach false doctrine are to be rebuked and reproofed and avoided unless they repent.

    Great post, by the way 🙂


  4. Thank you, Mark. Thank you for clarity on the errors, and for being willing to identify heresy as such. Thank you for pointing out the error of endorsing such things. Thank you for a strong Biblical perspective on caution in judging the salvation of others.

    Thank you for recognising that a website is not a church, and for refuting the idea that public errors (especially in teaching) cannot be warned about publicly without going to the teacher privately first.

    Thank you for your penultimate paragraph reminding that these problems are no surprise to the Lord, and thus no cause for discouragement.

    And most of all, thank you for your final paragraph. The greatest danger for those strong in the truth is not heresy, but to swerve from holiness in pride, sinful anger, or accommodation of error. All three are dangerous, but the most insidious is pride for “taking a stand.” This article was written with a pastor’s heart.


  5. Praise the Lord for your post. I have feared for years over the popularity of John Crowder, Louie Giglio, worship leaders like Christy Nockels, HillSong, jesusculture…


  6. I cannot endure false doctrine, however neatly it may be put before me. Would you have me eat poisoned meat because the dish is of the choicest ware? It makes me indignant when I hear another gospel put before the people with enticing words, by men who would fain make merchandise of souls; and I marvel at those who have soft words for such deceivers. – Charles Spurgeon


  7. The times that we are living now are filled with danger, spiritual danger!
    Great post.
    2Th 2:9 The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders,
    2Th 2:10 and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.
    2Th 2:11 Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false,
    2Th 2:12 in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
    2Th 2:13 But we ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.
    2Th 2:14 To this he called you through our gospel, so that you may obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
    2Th 2:15 So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by our spoken word or by our letter.
    2Th 2:16 Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace,
    2Th 2:17 comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word.


  8. I’d be careful about recommending the work of Apprised.org. I have seen too many instances of hyperbole and jumping to conclusions based on scant evidence to feel it’s a reliable source of truth. There may be a great deal of truth there, but the conclusions drawn from that truth may not serve the body very well.


  9. TJM said “This, in my estimation, includes Louie Giglio and Francis Chan”

    Why Francis Chan, just wondering because I have friends that quote or listen to him.


  10. I would agree we cannot call into question the salvation of some like John Piper, that is not our place, only the Lords. However what we should do is warn others to avoid them and their teachings until or unless they repent, as who can say where they started in error and how subtle the error could be in their teachings that might lead us down the same path. Best to avoid their teachings, all of them no matter how sound they are! There are still a few sound teachers to listen to in addition to our own study of the Word, but as these times are showing us nothing should replace or substitute our OWN study of the Word of God and it should be our primary focus and if we still desire to listen to these teachers who appear to be slipping into heresy/apostasy or at best are lacking discernment and being very poor shepherds (actually acting more like hirelings) by associating with people like Moore/Warren and others that should serve as a warning to us that we are elevating man over God’s Word. We should learn from Paul in Corinthians to turn them over to satan (the world) and pray they repent, do not associate with or support or listen to ANY of their teachings at this time, and warn others as true shepherds love and look out for and protect THE SHEEP!


  11. Fleebabylon, thank you for bringing the comment to my intention in which I referenced Francis Chan. I had intended on adding more to clarify my statement and then overlooked it. Please accept my apologies for that oversight.

    Having said that, in the first instance, I would state Chan has a great lack of discernment in that he would be willing to be a part of something that is clearly unbiblical at its very core.

    Gary Gilley did a great job in reviewing Chan’s book “Crazy Love” and I recommend the read as Gilley does present some valid concerns. I am concerned that Chan is more than a little shaky on the doctrine of eternal punishment vs. annihilationism. However, without further review, I will leave any further thoughts off the table.


  12. Jungle,

    I venture to say that this is how a discernment article should be done. Well stated. I especially appreciate the humble tone and the concern for the children of God, of whom not all can see it, be exposed to all of what is happening, or understand the intricacies of the issues at hand.


  13. Thank you all for the various comments and for the encouragement. My writing was not for the purpose of trying to write off more who do not believe like me. I know the problems in my own heart and I know the dangers of sitting under false teaching. This is why my heart aches when I see all that tries to pass for Christianity today. I feel compelled to warn others – not just of the wrath to come but also of the coming apostasy.


  14. As an attendee of Passion 2013, I would like to only express that you should be very careful to judge these teachers you have so wrongly accused of things you have no basis on. With that being said, Jesus was the only named magnified in the Georgia Dome! Giglio, Piper, Chan, Smith, and even Beth Moore made Jesus the central focus of their messages and it was very clear that He, Jesus, is the only way for true salvation. Maybe next year you should go and see for yourself instead of jumping to conclusions, because when you post this kind of garbage on the internet you cause the body of Christ to be ineffective. I say this as a waring to you, so that when you stand in front of Jesus in the age to come, he doesn’t say “I never knew you” I say that because Piper’s faith was brought into question. Hopefully yours isn’t put to the test also like you have put his through it. This comment is only for encouragement. We have to stop tearing down each other. My faith in Jesus has been made stronger by the preaching of His Word this past week through all of these people you have just put to the test. And in essence you are putting God to the test because His Word was taught fearlessly and accurately. Go next time. Then write your blog.


  15. Matthew,

    Thank you for stopping by and for being concerned enough to leave a comment. Having been in the ministry for almost 20 years, I do not take my ministry responsibilities lightly. With that said, I would like to make a few remarks that I hope you will take in the same spirit that you seem to evidence in your writing of the comment.

    Before I do though, I would like to use an illustration. Every year people willingly choose to cook and eat various foods like fungi (mushrooms) and puffer fish among other things. Every year, people get sick and/or die though from eating food that has even the tiniest amount of poison found in these items. Preparation of puffer fish requires several years of training before it can be served because of the dangers. In order to be ready to prepare to finally serve a customer, a chef is required to pass 3 major exams. Only about 30% of them even pass. My point is that just because it has the name of chef does not make that person qualified to prepare and serve puffer fish (or fugu).

    The same is true of ministers of the gospel. We are held to a very high standard and we cannot pick and choose what we wish to teach. We have no leeway to introduce doctrines of demons and state our approval of religious groups such as the Roman Catholic church that teaches only heresy.

    1. I do not judge these teachers because I do not like them personally, nor do I judge them needlessly. I have spent many hours doing research on these individuals before making the comments that I did. Do we make mistakes? Yes, of course, we do, but again the proof is in the pudding as they say when it comes to who these individuals are.

    2. It is not enough to just say that one believes in Jesus. Even the demons believe, but they tremble and will never know the joy of true salvation.

    3. I presented several comments which you have chosen to ignore or gloss over which I would bring to your attention again. For example, Beth Moore, John Piper and Louie Giglio promote the New Age doctrine of contemplative mysticism.

    4. For what it is worth, I have heard 3 of the messages presented from Passion 2013 on the internet, and while I heard the name of Jesus invoked, I never heard one clear presentation of the gospel message. I heard how you can better yourself. I heard how God loves you so much that He has a wonderful plan for your life. I heard music that was designed to rouse the emotions of the listeners and draw them into a state of ecstasy that is predominant within the realms of charismania.

    5. I am not putting God to the test, but am solely obeying the Word of God to test the spirits whether they truly are of God. You cannot mix puffer fish with tuna without the poison spreading to the tuna as well.

    6. Resting securely in the promises of God’s Word, the Lord will never say to me, “Depart from me for I never knew you” because I brought the false teachings of others to light. He will only say that to those who have no true salvation. If you had read my blog carefully, I did not state that Piper was an unbeliever.

    7. Finally, there is no way that God can be found anywhere near the nonsense and false doctrine that falls constantly from the lips of Giglio, Moore, Crowder and Jesus Culture!

    I await your answers, but to conclude I would like to ask you a question as you brought up that your faith in Jesus has been made stronger.

    Matthew, if you were to die today and stand before God. What would you say to Him if He were to ask you, “Matthew, why should I let you into my heaven?”

    What would your answer be? Your eternity is dependent on your answer, so please answer carefully.

    In His Sovereign Grace,

    Mark – TJM


  16. Roman Catholics and JWs make much of their versions of Jesus. So it often is with apostatizing evangelicals. The folks headlining this year’s Passion conference have enough of a record to cause any child of God to be very cautious in listening or reading anything they publish. As my pastor has rightly taught us, from 1 Cor 15, if you don’t have the biblical Jesus, none of your doctrine or beliefs are worth anything. Only the biblical Jesus – not a false one made up by men – can save. And He will save those chosen before the foundation of the world, predestined to salvation by God the Father.


  17. Don’t we all have mistakes. I jumped to conclusions about you deleting my comment. For that i am sorry. I should have never even entered or read this blog. May God have Mercy on us all. Especially me. I’m sorry


  18. Matthew, thank you for your response and for your apology. It is accepted and forgiven from my perspective just as Christ forgave us, so to we are to forgive others. I will go ahead and delete the last couple of comments that we have each made. However, I would love to chat with you further, not for the purpose of arguing, but you seem to have a teachable spirit. My personal email is love4liberia@gmail.com



  19. Jesus stands in my defense on that day because obviously there is no good in me apart from Him. Obviously i am a wretched sinner and that is evident from my comments i have left to you. But praise be to God that it is nothing I can do to get into heaven. It is Jesus. Only Jesus! And though i have failures which i have even displayed here on this page, Jesus is on my defense that day. And for that and by His Spirit I want to be more like Him. By his Word I can see, and i apologize for my comments. I pray that He is made perfect in my weakness. Please forgive me where i have wronged you.


  20. Matthew, already forgiven, my friend. You are correct in that we are wretched sinners. We come to Christ able to offer absolutely nothing in and of ourselves. There is nothing we have that He needs. Yes, salvation is of Jesus alone and this is the reason why we stress the importance of the gospel message, and that it not be diluted. I have often stated in my ministry that our goal should be to become more like Jesus today than we were yesterday and more like Him tomorrow than we are today. We are all weak in some ways that others are not. What makes the difference between one versus another is what we do with that weakness. Do we depend on ourselves or do we flee to the Rock and Mighty Fortress?

    We must remember though that it is not enough to just say we believe. The Bible is clear that the Holy Spirit brings conviction of sin and that when we our dead hearts are illuminated by the Spirit of God and His Word, there will be a change of heart. There will be repentance and confession of sin. There can be no salvation without a turning away from sin and repenting of that sin.

    Thanks again for stopping by and I hope and pray that you will stay and read our posts as we seek to defend and contend for the faith.


  21. This article hurts me. I can see that you believe that you are being a good Shepard by warning your sheep, but what I really see is a severe and judge mental skeptic who strives to tear apart the body just because The Lord has brought fame to some of his diligent followers. I was at passion 2013, and even though the speakers were very well known, it was Christ through them that was the famous one. I’m hurt to see another brother in Christ micro inspect another brother and sister who so boldly proclaimed the name of Christ and strived to make His Name known and glorified. Rather than making people aware you are tearing apart the kingdom by being so severely skeptical. You yourself stated that your opinion was not always true or right but you continue on to break down your other brothers and sisters. There is a reason that those preachers were at passion 2013 and it was not to lead the kingdom astray. There’s a reason 60,000 people were there. Not because they were buying into false doctrine, but because they saw the Holy Spirit in those people. All the preachers there BROUGHT IT. The Holy Spirit was alive and active. I encourage all the people promoting this severe skepticism to watch these preachers present the word at Passion2013 rather than accepting the opinion of one derisive shepherd.

    And referring to point you made about how the gospel was never presented, Beth Moore’s message: Jesus realized that only his death was enough to save His people
    Giglio: through Christ our dry bones are made new through Him only
    Chan: God remaining faithful to His convenant and His people
    I can sense a severe lack in trust of other pastors and preachers. As Judah smith said, we will never glorify Christ fully if we don’t engage in community.and I would also like to know your ideal form of worship since you don’t believe in the place of emotion in worship.


  22. Kira, first, thank you for stopping by and for your thoughts. Several of your comments amazed me.

    1. I am a severe and judgmental skeptic tearing the body of Christ apart because some people are famous. Famous?!?!? So are Bill Gates, Led Zeppelin, the Beatles, Steve Jobs, and others. However, none of those mentioned are famous because of a Christ-filled life. I am not going to stop people buying a PC because I prefer Apple computers. Do you see the point I am trying to make? This has nothing to do with fame, and their fame certainly provides no proof that they belong to the Lord.

    2. As I mentioned before, this is not just about invoking the name of Jesus repeated like a mantra over and over and over and over and over, etc. The leaders and the music artists who were there continue to preach and spread false doctrine. This is NOT micro-inspection. This is simply following the commands of the New Testament to mark those who not only cause division but also to shun those who teach false doctrine and heresy.

    3. Football stadiums, rock concerts, and New Year fireworks displays in large cities around the USA can command more than 60,000 people to fill a stadium but that does not mean they are honoring to Christ either.

    4. How can 60,000 people “see” the Holy Spirit in these famous people when 1) Many were not saved, 2) False teaching and false teachers were in abundance, and 3) the Holy Spirit does not bear witness to heresy!

    5. Beth’s message was “Jesus realized that only his death was enough to save His people.” Sorry, but that is not biblical. Sure sounds good though. Jesus, the Son of God, is eternal in existence. He did not suddenly come to the point where He “realized” that His death was the only way to salvation. From eternity past, Jesus Christ was as a Lamb slain before the foundation of the world. He knew when He left the glories of heaven the reason why He came.

    6. Giglio’s message about dry bones was taken from Ezekiel – a prophecy about Israel. There is nothing in the New Testament that speaks to unbelievers having their dry bones made new. No, no, NO! Through Jesus Christ alone, our dead heart of stone is taken out, and we are made a complete, brand new creation in Christ. God does not just reform the old stuff and put a veneer of goodness on what was there.

    7. There is only a severe lack of trust in pastors and preachers that believe, teach, and spread their false beliefs to 60,000 people in order to gain more fame or money in their billfolds.

    8. You quote Judah Smith, this man is a rank heretic, who promotes the charismatic teachings that are nothing more than the doctrines of demons.

    Now, let me ask you a question – explain to me how their “good” points outweigh their false doctrine. I will only accept answers that are based on the Word of God. Please tell me how Peter, James, the apostle Paul, and even Jesus were wrong by not calling the religious “famous” leaders of the day to account for their false teaching.

    Oh yes, one more thing – I never stated that I do not believe in emotion in worship. What I do not believe is biblical is when emotion drives worship. Our worship should be first and foremost Christ-centered. Our music can never drive our theology. Our theology or doctrine MUST drive our worship. Anything else is contrary to Scripture.

    I look forward to your answers and am willing to engage in conversation with anybody that comes here with a teachable spirit. My desire is not to cause division in the true body of Christ, but it is to warn of the apostasy that is filling some churches and obviously stadiums to overflowing.


  23. “FYI – Gary Gilley also has a solid review of David Platt’s Radical:”

    I found that review to be a bit shallow, I wont rehash anymore than that, I think it was all said on pilgrims Radical series posts. BTW, I am no Platt fanboy either I just worry about many reformed brethren who are doctrinal pharisees with ever i dotted in their doctrines of grace but will end up being exposed as goats, lovers of money like the pharisees, and be condemned at the judgment.



  24. Fleebabylon, obviously my contention was not with David Platt and Radical, but was about his endorsing Passion 2013. While he made some good points, I also believe that Gilley overstated his case in a few areas of concern that he has with Platt’s approach to social outreach.


  25. TJM, I was responding to Manfred, not your OP. I was sad to see some people like Platt and especially Piper who have much good teaching defile their ministry with those they endorse.


  26. I’ve read your blogs Mark. I put them up against the literature and the blogs of our brothers like Chan, Piper, Giglio, and Smith. I notice one key difference. These men teach the Word of God accurately for the building up of the body, while all i seem to see from you is tearing down. And FYI there was no confusion in any of their sermons. The true gospel was proclaimed. I saw several people come to Christ this week. But my point is, when i put all of what you are saying up next to the Bible and then i put what they are bringing to the table up next to it, there is not much difference except your passion to demolish these leaders character and integrity, but i see that their main goal is to teach the Word and proclaim the Gospel that people may come to Christ. Not arguing or defending, just telling you what i see man.


  27. Matthew, how can they be in agreement when some of them teach and practice contemplative mysticism? How can be in agreement when some of them think they can raise the dead, or have visions where they dance with Jesus around a music box, or co-pastor churches with their wives contrary to Scripture? How can their message be clear when all of these people so not even believe that salvation is by grace through faith alone? How can they be, in your words, “teaching the Word of God accurately” when they themselves are not in agreement on key doctrines with each other, much less in agreement with the Word of God?

    You see, this is the problem with these kind of meetings. They can put together enough sounds good theology and invoke the name of Jesus enough that everybody in attendance believes they are getting the real deal! But they are brig deceived by the evil one and his ministers of unrighteousness.

    The problem is compounded because they gave conflicting messages about the way to Christ! To give you an example, the Catholics, the JWs, the Mormons, and a host of others can use the name of Jesus in a meeting. They can all hold hands and sing Kumbaya together but it does not make a single one of them a true believer in Christ!

    I would like to add that my desire is not to tear down their character and integrity, but to point out to others the poison that is being served all under the guise of evangelicalism and is actually nothing more than ecumenicalism!

    If you truly desire to hear what the gospel is, I would recommend you find Paul Washer’s sermon to a bunch of young people preached a few years ago. Here is the link.

    Listen to that message and then convince me that such a message would have been allowed to be preached at Passion 2013! It would never happen because that kind of message brings true conviction to dead hearts.


  28. I would love for you to send me something that tells me all about this mysticism garbage, and where you get this basis of them being involved in it and if it is even credible info. I don’t know if listened to everything at passion but Hell was talked about and it was not taken lightly and Francis Chan has even wrote a book about it’s reality. It’s called Erasing Hell. And I’m sure you can probably pick it apart bit by bit. Sin was addressed my brother. I have brothers in Nigeria who are being hunted like dogs because if their faith and being blown apart and being burned to the ground for their faith. And all you can do is pick apart the Church of God and his people. We all fall short! Even you bro man. Even me! It’s time to stop this mess before we mIsd what God is doing.


  29. Matthew, I need to ask you a question. Are you only seeking now to defend what you heard over this last week, or do you truly desire the truth? I have asked you several questions which you have chosen to ignore. I have also pointed you and others in the direction necessary to find out what some of those who were at Passion actually believe.

    Having served as a Bible teacher and church planter in the jungles of Liberia, West Africa, a country that was completely destroyed by 15 years of civil war, I know the devastation that comes when Muslims are killing Christians. I have seen the results of horrendous war and persecution. But I have also seen what Liberia is now turning into because of the false teaching and preaching that is being imported from America.

    You are right – it is time to stop this mess, but I am afraid that we are not in agreement with what is actually the mess or even what is causing it. I wonder how many would be in disagreement if the apostle Paul were alive today. I am sure that just as he did with the religious leaders in his day, he would take a stand against the ungodliness and the heresy that is filling America today. But I am just as sure that many would proclaim him to be self-righteous, far too judgmental, and seeking to divide the Body of Christ. Strange that through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the Scriptures do not see it that way.


  30. Strange to see that you would compare yourself to the apostle Paul. I’ve read all 13 books, and your blog in no way reminded of his letters to the church. I wander if Paul had the would wide web and a blog what he would say…. By the way, you ignored to give me the material on which you judge these teachers on. Lets don’t ignore the foundation of how you conjured this assumptions. Being a true Christ follower, I’m sure you know the importance of a foundation. I would only like to know where you stated building your beliefs on these teachers.


  31. Actually, my purpose was not comparing myself to the apostle Paul. I was merely using some of the well-worn, over-used, trite-sounding statements to try and put solid, Biblical truth in a box of their own choosing. However, since you tried to make the connection, what do you do with passages where Paul told his readers that those who preach another gospel were to be considered accursed? Or, how about shunning those who teach contrary? Or, after the second or third admonition against false teachers, mark them as heretics? Strangely enough, that sounds like what we are seeking to do – warn others of the dangers that are found in so-called evangelical circles.

    I did not ignore your request. I simply asked you to give due consideration to my previous thoughts, comments, and questions. If you were able to bring a serious concern after reading through that and doing a little research on your own, then I would be more than willing to point you in the direction of more specific material. However, as I have already said, if your comments are merely to defend these individuals who were there, then there would be no point in continuing down this road. We have stated many times during the 5+ years of this blog’s existence that we willingly engage in dialogue with those who are seeking truth, but we have no desire to simply open our site to those who would willfully ignore what the Scriptures say in order to justify the existence of false teachers.

    We continue to have a dialogue with you and hope to continue, but simply making comments that try to detract from the evidence already produced proves nothing. It only serves to show that many times those who are convinced against their will are of the same opinion still. I have stated some of the heresies that are being taught and that these leaders believe, but you continue to seemingly ignore the truth. Why is that? Is it because you had a “great time” at Passion 2013? Had you not gone and a good friend of yours had pointed out the doctrinal error that was abounding within the church, would it have made a difference in your decision to go?


  32. For those truly interested, I recommend some of the following links to research:






    In addition two definitions to consider from Lighthouse Trails Research –

    Contemplative Spirituality: A belief system that uses ancient mystical practices to induce altered states of consciousness (the silence) and is rooted in mysticism and the occult but often wrapped in Christian terminology. The premise of contemplative spirituality is pantheistic (God is all) and panentheistic (God is in all). Common terms used for this movement are “spiritual formation,” “the silence,” “the stillness,” “ancient-wisdom,” “spiritual disciplines,” and many others.

    Spiritual Formation: A movement that has provided a platform and a channel through which contemplative prayer is entering the church. Find spiritual formation being used, and in nearly every case you will find contemplative spirituality. In fact, contemplative spirituality is the heartbeat of the spiritual formation movement.


  33. Well my friend i have actually been the past six years to passion and i will end our debating with this since you have no desire to consider the things i have said since i don’t believe the way you do about certain people. Francis Chan taught last year as well and his message was about reading the Bible for yourself and not listening to mere men but lining everything up with scripture. I believe that is what you believe as well. I actually came to Christ at a passion conference and it is because i realized i was a sinner and that i needed a savior. Not that life would get easier but actually Paul presents the opposite. I only think you could have went about this differently. I don’t agree brother Joel Osteen at times but you don’t see me putting him under the witch hunt. I believe that you would feel differently if you were put under the same close examination as you are putting these teachers. I would still love to know your thoughts on us raising over 3 million dollars to help end slavery. And i was reminded of Jesus about telling us to go to our brother when we think he is caught in sin. Not slandering him. Just a thought. I await your reply, but this is my last. I love you and pray for you.


  34. ” I don’t agree brother Joel Osteen at times but you don’t see me putting him under the witch hunt.”

    Is that like:

    ” I don’t agree brother lucifer at times but you don’t see me putting him under the witch hunt.”


  35. I see how you roll now. Twisting the words and teaching of others. Why? I do not know. And you still ignore my questions. How do you expect me to trust you? You follow these people at apprising and in essence you do the very thing you warn people against. You follow the words of man. Hmmmm. Interesting


  36. Matthew, I believe TJM has been very patient and has tried to answer the questions you have posted. He has provided you with links to seek out the info showing that there are indeed problems with many of the folks involved with the Passion Conference. However, you are now answering him back with a hostile tone and accusing him of listening to men instead of God. As such it is apparent you are not willing to engage in a dialogue to learn, but are satisfied only with defending the conference.

    This blog exists for the defense of the faith and the edification of the saints. We would be remiss in our duties as Christians if we did not attempt to warn people when the gospel of Jesus Christ was under assault, either by direct contradiction of scripture or by the watering down of God’s word. TJM’s article does exactly that. He has warned against the teachings which lead people astray rather than lead to eternal life. However, your unwillingness to hear him out and your questioning of TJM’s integrity will no longer be allowed. Thank you for contributing, but this thread is now done.


  37. But he call in the integrity of others? I’ve seen all the links. I’m sorry his integrity was brought into question. Im sorry it got hostile. But maybe i guess he sees what he is doing to the other brothers. All it does is tear the body down and when unbelievers see this stuff they want nothing to do with Jesus. I’m sorry i was even apart if this. Inconsistency here. I’ll continue learning from the likes of Piper. Sorry and thanks for listening i guess…? 😦


  38. Matthew, we are not sorry that you wrote to us, believe me. We always encourage discussion. The problem comes when someone refuses to see what is being shown to them. While there were teachers at Passion that have orthodox teachings, like Piper, there are many others who simply lead people wrongly. As a Christian, you cannot simply be content to believe everything there was of God because people were moved to walk the aisle or “pray a prayer.” Remember that the Bereans were esteemed because they searched the Word of God to see if what Paul taught was true. There were many at Passion that simply did not rightly present the word of God. But if we say that people were “blessed” therefore we won’t call them on what is wrong, then we are guilty of doing injustice to the Word of God.


  39. But Pipers salvation was brought into question in this blog…are we ignoring that now? Its hard for me to follow what is going on here. Just being honest. Not hostile. Just confused.


  40. His salvation was not questioned. But his involvement in the conference was. His judgment in associating with folks who do not rightly handle the word of God was questioned. His salvation was not.


  41. Matthew, you do seem to have a desire to know the truth as you keep coming back with questions and concerns. We do appreciate that. I would like to remind you of my comment about Piper that you seem to be questioning.

    QUOTE – “Second, while I am not prepared to question whether he has ever come to a point of saving faith, I am prepared to learn from the words of John MacArthur, who has in the past noted that a person who evidences no change, has no fruit, and continues in full-blown apostasy must be concerned as to whether they were ever saved to begin with.”

    My statement was clear – IF Piper’s life evidenced NO change, has NO fruit, and IF he continued in the direction of full-blown apostasy – ONLY THEN must we be concerned as to whether he or anybody else in such a position was ever saved to begin with. I actually preceded that statement that I was NOT calling his salvation into question.


  42. But this is not just a focus on Piper, it is the fact that Piper has chosen for several years to align himself with people that are preaching a false gospel. He agrees and endorses being with people like Judah Smith, Beth Moore, Rick Warren, Mark Driscoll, Jesus Culture and others. These people are in a different camp than Piper is. They are clearly false teachers; whereas, Piper is bringing a new assocation where he has no business doing.


  43. Sadly, Matthew, your responses are a much clearer indication of what you would like to be the case than what is actually happening. We bring many things to your attention, but you appear to be like the little boy on the playground who when things don’t go his way, just picks up his ball and goes home in order to play by himself. I would have hoped and had prayed that you would be a Berean Christian to see whether there was any truth in what I said, not simply gone on your emotions or your feelings. Far too many who claim the name of Christ are using a well-worn phrase that goes like this, “It doesn’t matter what you or the Bible says, I KNOW how I FEEL and THAT is all that matters!”

    If your faith has been placed in Christ as you have given testimony to, then our prayer will be that you will grow in that faith, that you will be a Berean Christian who is blessed with discernment and that you will run far from those who would seek to undermine the biblical foundations that many have died for.

    For what it is worth, I am glad of the money that was raised to help stop slavery. However, slavery will never end in this world any more than war will until the Prince of Peace returns to this earth and brings final judgment upon all those who have never placed their faith in Him. My fear is that many give to causes like this thinking they are somehow fulfilling a works-based salvation that God will be under some obligation to accept. Sadly, it does not work that way.


  44. We are called in the Bible to help the oppressed. And that is my desire, because Jesus desires the broken hearted. He desires their souls more! And that is the whole point my friend. Bringing justice to the slave and in that, only by the power if Jesus, can we seek out the elect and preach the true gospel of Jesus. And then, God if glorified! And that if the point. Right?


  45. Matthew, YES, YES, YES, We are called to help those who are downtrodden, but we are to do it in the manner which is prescribed by Jesus Christ. For example, there were many who were lepers, or poor, or lame, or blind. There were many who died during the time of Jesus’ ministry. However, He never once made somebody rich. In fact, He made it clear that He did not even have a place to lay His head. He never even promised health, wealth, and prosperity to His believers such as being falsely taught as sound doctrine by the likes of Judah Smith and Joel Osteen. He did promise was that those who would be His disciples must be willing to take up their cross and follow Him!

    There were millions of slaves during the Roman Empire, but never once did Jesus call for a rebellion and for all the slaves to revolt against their masters. Instead, He did tell those who were slaves to be obedient to their masters as if they were doing it unto Christ. He told the masters to treat their slaves rightly as if they were treating the Lord Himself.

    Yes, Jesus came to bring salvation, not to the self-righteous, but to those who have been brought to the point where they realize that they have nothing to offer, and that NOTHING but salvation is being offered.

    My friend, hear me out, there were tens of thousands that we came in contact with over in West Africa. We could not help everybody, but we did what we could. At the end of the day though, here are the facts. If all I do is offer a slave his or her freedom, offer them a full stomach, offer them clean water, offer them a great education – then they die without Christ! They will die with their freedom, a full stomach, no disease from the water, and educated, but they will still be dead and they will still be in hell!

    We need to offer slaves and masters alike the clear, unadulterated gospel message PLUS nothing and MINUS nothing. This is what Christ calls His true disciples to do, not to promote a social gospel agenda. I agree that we are called to love our neighbor as ourself, but it is not loving to give them everything we have in America so that they can build their self-esteem only to refuse them the gospel message because some false teachers and preachers want to tell them that anything that floats your boat will be accepted – but you just have to invoke the name of Jesus and you will be cool! Sorry, but that is not gospel – that is heresy!


  46. So what do i say to the girl being raped over 30 times a day. The point of this is to give organizations the resources to help be a voice for the girl being raped and being trafficked for sex. But the most important thing is their soul. It is easy to tell the slaves you don’t need justice you just need Jesus. The only problem is we sit comfortably behind our computer screens and smart phones and do nothing but debate on whether or not passion 2013 is legit. This is my conviction not me debating. How can people believe in the Mercy of Jesus Christ when we do not show it?


  47. Matthew, we here at DefCon would never agree to such horrible situations as the one you mentioned. Sadly, sex trafficking takes place right here in America as well and has been going on for many years. It is not just a problem overseas in 3rd world countries.

    You are correct that many times, we hide behind computer screens and smart phones doing nothing but holding debates. However, not all of us fit in those categories. Some of us have gone to where others will not. Some of us write to share the truths so others will know what and who we are standing for in the fight. Some give of their time and their resources to help those who struggle in unjust situations. We at DefCon do not argue or debate because we have nothing better to do. If you knew us personally, you would soon learn that we are all involved heavily in various outreaches both in America and around the world for the express purpose of seeing Jesus Christ glorified and the gospel message being proclaimed.

    Our heart aches when we see people being duped by false teachers such as those we have already mentioned. The world is being led astray and it is on a slippery slope headed for hell. It is a broad road to destruction that many are on, including many who think they know the Lord because they have been told to pray a prayer or because they have been fed a dose of gospel-lite!

    You are very much right though that we cannot proclaim the mercy of Jesus Christ when we do not show it or practice it. God did not save us so that we can sit on our rears and not show forth the love of Christ to others. We are called to action and to serve. Too often there are those who hide behind their theology, but do not practice. On the other hand, there are those who only serve at soup kitchens or give funds and hide behind that thinking that they are doing God a favor by helping others. There must be a balance and sometimes it is hard to know where to start or how to get there.


  48. I agree my friend. Giglio said the same thing you just said. He said it is not some little prayer you say. It was also told that sex trafficking was happening in the very city we were worshipping together. I encourage you to listen to the whole passion 2013 word for word. Because the truth was proclaimed. And you just told me in your own words the same thing giglio said about some “prayer” you have to say. It’s a heart change. A transformation! Realizing sin! Turning away from it! Praise God! But it’s only by the power of Christ and its all for his glory.


  49. TJM

    You write: “Today, we MUST have the true gospel of Jesus Christ being preached to the world. The church has an awesome responsibility to reach out to the world and share in love the truth of God’s Word. The world must hear that there is ONLY one way to heaven and that is through the finished work of Jesus Christ.”

    I would add some salt: Acts 3:23 And it shall be that every soul who does not listen to that prophet shall be destroyed from the people.’


    1Chron. 16:31 Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice, and let them say among the nations, “The LORD reigns!”
    32 Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; let the field exult, and everything in it!
    33 Then shall the trees of the forest sing for joy before the LORD, for he comes to judge the earth.

    Not until we start preaching clearly that there are consequences for your error I suppose we will continue seeing this lukewarm manifestation and in some cases heretical manifestations of the Truth?

    Seems clear from my citations that both the Old Testament times of King David and New Testament times of the Apostles they didn’t hold back making it clear wrath was one of God’s options!


  50. I will not defend all of the speakers or musicians at Passion, but I take exception to your criticism of Platt and Chan. These men are not perfect, but if you look at the whole of their teaching and the fruit of their ministry, I don’t see it being worth your time or server space to criticize them. Both of these men love Jesus and are very comitted to the Great Comission.


  51. MarkLee, if you went back on our blog you would see some ringing endorsements of Platt especially. The problem is their association and lack of discernment in associating or endorsing those who teach false doctrine and blatant heresy!


  52. Platt didn’t speak at Passion this year. Chan on the other hand did. So how is Platt under the “heresy” radar in regards to this blog.


  53. Matthew, not sure about one of your posts being erased. Up to this point, Chris and I have continued our dialogue with you. As for Platt, again, if you were to read my comments, the question is not whether Platt is a heretic. The question that we were raising is the connection with those who are teaching false doctrine and heresy, or the endorsing of groups that do so. In so doing, he shows a major lack of discernment just as Chan did in his endorsement to work with those who are completely and totally at odds with what he even says he believes.


  54. I don’t agree with you but i understand your point. I believe you are off based, but none the less i see what you are saying. And i guess the fearless leader Chris didn’t like my comment when i agreed with Michael and all i said was that Gods wrath was presented as an option at Passion 2013. I was there. I know. I thought i followed the rules of engagement, but i don’t think i belong here anymore. Thanks for discussing with me Mark. You have been kind, forgiving, and a friend. Thanks


  55. I did not remove any comments following my last discussion with you. Not sure what may have occurred, perhaps it was a WordPress glitch. Please refrain from casting aspersions on us without verifying the facts. Thank you.


  56. Seriously, I do not understand why up to now, John Piper is always being given the benefit of the doubt. I have seen so many evidence of him mixing heresies with truth. One good example is the fact that he accepts Arminienism. He even said it personally. When will we start to acknowledge that he is a false teacher? I subscribe to his facebook and to be honest, I have seen ridiculous things being posted over there and also from his followers. One follower even ask the question what if Jesus was aborted in a post on pro life when arguing on pro life. The very statement of this is so heretical and yet not even a single person spoke out against this. When will his teachings really be scrutinized. When will he finally be kicked out from the reformed movement. When will he continue making statements such as this If you don’t marvel at the beast, it is evidence that you are among the elect. (Revelation 17:8)
    and get away with it. It is so clear to me that he is a false teacher and someone who is more dangerous then say Rick Warren as he preaches heresy to the Reformed crowd. To me he is a shame to the Christian World. I think he is determined in bringing down the Gospel. He wants to pollute the Gospel with his poetry and phillosophy. He is a person who loves his phillosophy more then the Word of God. A person who loves lies more then turth. He is more concerned about his Christian Philosophy more then Chiristian Truth. More interested in poetry even if that very poetry dilutes the truth.
    I think the devil is really smart. He puts a stooge like Piper into the reformed movement to deceive us. And now we are not allowed to call a spade a spade because this Piper is of the reformed movement and thus he cannot be of the devil. I think this is one of the greatest deception that we are facing right now.


  57. Matthew Cannon: The bible explicity tells us to be careful about false teachers and also mentions the consequences of being a false teacher. In fact Paul in the bible mentions that we are to be extremely careful about false teachers. So you feel that false preachers like Joel Osteen should get away from the hook and not be scrutinized? Dun you feel angry that people like Joel Osteen twist the word of God and mock the word of God? How come no one points out his mistakes? Is it because we have to be ‘loving’ to our brothers?


  58. thejunglemissionary: I think you are indeed very careful before questioning our brothers and sisters who have gone astray. You are reluctant to make a conclusion before a heavy consideration. It is fascinating how people like Matthew Cannon cannot see it this way.


  59. Chris, all I know is that my comment was up for a long time. And all I said was that “I guess” you erased it. You really get on that defense pretty fast. Kind of crazy how a comment that said something directly positive about passion 2013 would just “glitch” out after being up for several hours. But my respect stands for TJM, he knows how to handle things around here. I see who the police, jury, and judge is. I’m not the smartest person, but you are kind of insulting my intelligence Chris. I’m sorry for calling you “fearless leader”. That was uncalled for.


  60. Considering that this conversation has been to continue despite my initial discussion with you Matthew, I would have to say I have been very patient. My only statement to you was to not cast aspersions without determining that I had in fact deleted the comment. As I said, I deleted no comment from you. I cannot account for its deletion, that’s all, and my response was to inform you of that.

    I appreciate that you respect TJM, for he is a valued contributor and has shown far more patience in this conversation than needed. I would appreciate if you would show that same consideration.


  61. This has been nothing if not entertaining. I think James White’s quote is right for this situation: “Inconsistency is the sign of a failed argument”.


  62. As for Sylar, all I will say is that I would LOVE to see you sit down one-on-one with John Piper and share your concerns with him. I would buy tickets to that show.


  63. Agreed Michael! I’m glad that God’s wrath was presented as an option at passion 2013. Praise God for fearless teachers of the Word!


  64. Sylar, I think i would just start your argument over if i were you. You called Piper a stooge? He is a person who loves his philosophy more than the Word of God? You are obviously reaching to have an argument. Therefore, i cannot take you seriously. Please just start over. I’ll forget what you just posted.


  65. Matthew, I must say I am perplexed by you’re referring to God’s wrath as an “option.” It is never an option, it is an absolute certainty that His wrath abides on us all. The fact is that God’s wrath will be satisfied for all sins, either on the sinners themselves, or on Christ for those whom God saves. It should never be presented as a mere choice as if to say, “You can have wrath, or you can have Jesus.” Such a watered down presentation would never cause the sinner to understand the depravity of his sin, nor would it cause him to flee to the Savior.

    A true presentation of the gospel is one in which sin is demonstrated to be rebellion against God, deserving of his righteous wrath. A wrath that is guaranteed. Yet, God in His mercy poured out his wrath on His Son at the cross. Sinners must forsake all, turning in repentance and clinging to the cross, trusting in Christ alone for their salvation. To present wrath as an “option” takes the work of salvation and puts it into the hands of a sinner as some sort of choice they can make. To present wrath as a deserved guarantee makes the sinner aware salvation is n Christ alone and cause them to flee to Him for mercy.

    If the Passion crowd taught wrath as an “option,” then that further justifies what TJM has written.


  66. Much of the problem we see here in these disagreements and arguments is rooted in the American church obsession with celebrity pastors. At best all these men are awful broken sinners, at worst they are false teachers. The reality for all of them is probably somewhere in between. We have an obsession with the celebrity pastor though. We have an obsession with the conferences, the the podcasts, the books, the image and brand of celebrity pastors…whether it is John Piper, John MacArthur, or Joel Osteen. Some are great godly teachers and some are tools of the devil, but all are celebrities and therefore dangerous.

    I speak from personal experience as one who is a recovering celebrity pastor disciple. As sheep, we’d be far better off to focus on the teaching of the local church and our own shepherd-pastor or as men in ministry to focus on the sheep under our care than to follow any celebrity national pastor. We need to keep them all at arms length because they are not our pastor. True, we can and will learn great things from some of them, but we need to guard our hearts and minds.

    Paul’s wisdom is vital here:
    “…Who is sufficient for these things? For we are not, like so many, peddlers of God’s word, but as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ.”
    (2 Corinthians 2:16b-17 ESV)

    In His grace,


  67. I used the same terminology and phrasing that our dear friend Michael used, and i don’t believe his phrasing was picked apart so viciously the way you did mine. Maybe it is because of the mere fact that he agrees with this blog. And I thought we were all understanding here of the correct presentation of the gospel. That’s the reason I didn’t go into the whole presentation. But once again I find myself realizing how the people of this site distort the words of fruitful followers and teachers. So the case you just presented has once again destroyed the credibility of this blog and entire site, in my eyes ofcourse. Obviously not through the eyes of Sylar which has showed his/her shallow “thoughts” and just flat out disrespect to John Piper.


  68. atg – AMEN and AMEN! “Pastor Celibrityitus” is a cancer in the church that can affect men of sold doctrine and men of false doctrine. It is the pride of the flesh that contributes to this. We herald Christ! And not any man – even if he be a faithful spokesman of the Truth.


  69. The way ATG just presented that was awesome! That is what I’m talking about! That’s the way it should be presented. Not in a freakishly long blog that condemns certain people and certain conferences. Have you even thought of the fact that you could be wrong about them? I do all the time. That’s why i question so much if you haven’t noticed.


  70. Matthew, given that you posted a comment that you said was deleted, I took the time to review and answer what you wrote. Given that I did not see Michael’s comment earlier, I did not address it. You accused me earlier of getting defensive, yet when I addressed my concern with your comment, you attack the credibility of the entire blog. My concern with your comment extends to anyone who would present the gospel in that way, so if Michael presented it that way, it extends to him as well.

    You stated that you believed since we essentially all know the gospel, we did not need to rehash the presentation. My argument is that we must daily preach the gospel to ourselves and others lest we begin to assume it. Once the gospel is assumed, we take it for granted. That should never be. Nor should we ever assume a gospel presentation that “sort of” sounds like the true gospel is just as acceptable.


  71. Funny that you mention this ATG, I was just wondering the other day if conferences, even sound, biblical ones, were wise because they contribute to the creation of celebrity pastors. This may be an issue we will have to address here on DefCon.


  72. Ok Chris, now you are just reaching to be right about something. I’m trying to discuss and get everyone on the same page.


  73. Ok sir, well I’m done talking with you because obviously me and you don’t know how to converse with one another. Anyway, well said ATG. I think that should have been the blog instead


  74. So let me understand if I may Matthew, you repeatedly have argued with TJM despite his patience with you. You have shown an unwillingness to be corrected despite his answers and his efforts to guide you to information that would clarify the matter. Yet you have been allowed to continue by me despite my warnings regarding your comments on this blog.

    You later accused me of deleting a comment, but I clarified that I had not and was fine with you reposting. However, when I address a concern with the comment, you demonstrate the same confrontational attitude you have taken with TJM. And now you state you are done speaking with me because we cannot communicate with one another.

    At this point Matthew, I believe we have been patient and gracious. You have been permitted a great deal of time to voice your disagreements. However, that time us now at an end. Thank you for your contributions, but you will no longer be given the opportunity to co-opt this thread.


  75. It’s been real gentlemen. But now it seems that even when i agree with people such as ATG, a contributor to this site, I still get the rod. Thank all of you men/women for discussing with me. We all have our short comings. Especially me. I have a long way to go. Thank you for you patience

    Matthew Cannon


  76. Matthew, at no time have you “gotten the rod” for being in agreement. As contributors, we have simply tried to correct your understanding in certain areas. The reason you are not being permitted to continue at this time is due to your confrontational demeanor when one of us tries to show you something. I do believe you may have a genuine heart to learn. But I cannot allow a thread to be co-opted by folks who simply wish to be argumentative. However, if you do wish to continue commenting, I will allow it if you cease with being confrontational and actually address concerns that we bring to your attention.


  77. Matthew, 75% of my comment is directed towards the defense of the celebrity preacher. 25% to the criticism of them. All in all we can’t put our full trust in living preachers since they can still fall…and they fall regularly.

    Also, I believe you are taking Chris wrong. His intentions are for peace and keeping the defcon waters clear of blood that will attract the sharks.

    Thanks, brother.


  78. ATG is correct Matthew. I have no desire to boot people who are honestly talking through tough theological issues with us. My intent for this blog is for people to learn and be edified. My genuine concern is when people start telling us “I’m done talking with you” or doggedly refuse to hear what’s being presented. I believe you have acknowledged more than once that you were wrong in acting in such a way. It has been one of the reasons I was willing to allow the conversation to continue. If you can refrain from such unnecessary comments, I’d be more than willing to keep you on this thread.


  79. Chris,

    if I might seeing Matthew agreed with my post and I too was wondering where his affirmation went after seeing it?

    I know you are walking slowly and carefully, measured and that is a good sign of a man on his way to a deeper maturity in Christ.

    Having said that I have a bit of Biblical advice if you are willing to accept it?

    I’ll publish the verses but say this first. Don’t be hasty cutting off Matthew even if he wants to cast asperisons at us in here, you contributors and you the moderator and us lowlifes who just don’t get it? He’s an added benefit and you and the contributors have a great opportunity to hone in your responsive skills. I would not go so far as to reject Matthew as is a severe remedy in Scripture, “after the first and second admonition” simply because this is a public forum and that admonition had far more powerful usefulness in that “house” where that remedial action was prescribed.

    Here are the verses that I hope will lighten your way and allow lliberty to be given to Matthew. He hasn’t been foul mouthed just has uncovered himself in such a way that we might be able to assist him see the Way:
    1Co 13:4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant
    1Co 13:5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;
    1Co 13:6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.
    1Co 13:7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

    Pro 26:4 Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest you be like him yourself.
    Pro 26:5 Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes.

    These verses used in the Master’s Hand can be very effective in establishing Truth and Grace in the heart of a fool and deepen the level and capacity to love through you as well.

    Just my consideration now after reading what seems to be a wounded warrior wanting willing participants with his wisdom?

    As I said in my first remarks, this too might be added salt?

    May God continue to keep His Hand of blessings upon you Chris and this work for you to guide in the gentleness of His Wisdom as it grows in intensity and attracts a lot of foolishness besides!


  80. Chris Hohnholz: Thanks for allowing me to post in this site. To be honest, you have really been very very patient with Matthew Cannon giving the way that he has been attacking you and TDP. It is really a testimony of the patience you show not only to Matthew Cannon but to all others who preaches heresies. The thing is since when has posting on another site been a right and not a privilege. The fact that Matthew Cannon is still allow to comment even after attacking the administrator, I think he should really thank his lucky stars. To be saying that he is interested in learning is really inaccurate but kind observation. To be honest, from his Post, I do not even see anything resembling a desire to learn. He is just someone who wants to defend his favorite pastor at all cost and refuses to listen to reason. Matthew Cannon, if you have the common sense to just stick to the topic on hand instead of attacking the administrator it will go a long way.


  81. By the way. I am not taking back any of the statements that I make. Why should I. I have backed up my statements very clearly. You are not addressing my concern Matthew Cannon. You readily dismiss my post as shallow and disrespectful of John Piper. But then it is so obvious that he is posting something heretical by saying that as elects we should not watch out for the beast when that passage is clearly saying that the condemned would worship the beast. The bible in fact tells us that we should indeed be on a look out for anti-christs. This is not even a twisting of God’s word any more. It is a blatant lie. I think the shallow one over here is you my friend. You are attacking everyone on here through character assassination and you are not interested in a formal debate. In fact you just dismiss my points without even refuting them. Yes, I am interested in debating on this topic but not with someone as shallow like you. Not with someone who cannot deal with facts like you. I know the people here are pretty patient here and are hesitant to criticize but I am not one of them. I say things as it is and I feel that enough grace has been given to John Piper. It is finally time to call a spade what it is. I know that people over here still consider John Piper as being ‘disqualified to teach’ but to me he is a false teacher. I know I am harsh here but I am just saying things as it is. Just calling a spade a spade here.


  82. ATG, I disagree you on this point here. Paul himself and the other 11 apostles at that time were not just ‘celebrity’ pastors. They were literally ‘popes’. In fact Christ himself gave them this authority. Now, I do not think you should ‘keep an arms length’ towards Paul. They did not fall into sin because of their strong foundation in Christ and also a correct understand of who they actually are. I am not saying that they are not sinners. They still are but because of their past experiences and through the holy spirit they remain as examples that we should all follow and that we continue to follow at present times. They did not let the fact that they are sinners disqualify them from being an ‘authority representative’ of Christ at that time. But their understanding of the fact that they are sinners actually made them a better servant of Christ. Now ATG, if we take your advise and keep an arms length towards Godly celebrity pastor, should we also take your advise and keep an arms length towards Paul. After all from your argument, Paul is also a sinful broken man. Should we scrutinize his letters? Now there is a difference between an inperfect ‘celebrity’ pastor and a celebrity apostate. Sure there is a possibility of John Macarthur going off track. There is a possibility that he may say a few things that is perhaps not the truth. But because of his foundation in Christ, his track record of preaching the truth and his understanding of his true status, he has earned the right to be given the benefit of the doubt most of the time. Contrast that with John Piper who has a record of mixing heresies with doctrine( Christian Hedonism,calvinism and arminienism). A person who does not seem stable and seems to prefer emotion( hand gestures) over truth. A person who rather preach on social issues(abortion,race) then on the bible.A person who has a track record of loving philosophies over truth (look at the way he endorses Blaise Pascal, C W Lewis, Charles Darwin). A person who readily dismisses scripture just for the acceptance of man( Saying that science determines the age of Earth without even scrutinizing the science towards it) and a person who starts to show his true colors by now making heretical statements such as the one I provided above. He is not only disqualified from being a pastor. To be honest, all his credibility has gone down the drain. With the kind of heresies that he says, he is not trust worthy even as a person. In fact he should be given the same treatment as a Joyce Meyer or a Benny Hinn. That is how lowly I see of him. I am sure that I will have some disagreement with John Macarthur in the future but I will never change my impression of him that he is a great bible teacher.


  83. Sylar, I don’t intend to defend Piper here, but it sounds like your issue with the “beast” comment might be a biblical theology frameworks issue rather than a heresy issue. I am not familiar with the quote but I think I understand your issue. Are you dispensational in your framework?


  84. Yes, we need to be careful and use discernment when it comes to the teachers and preachers in today’s world. However, tearing people who are doing the Lord’s work down is absolutely disgusting. Passion Conferences are not meant to save the people who come directly. The purpose of the conference is to raise leaders up within the church and equip them to be the hands and feet of Christ. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Not every sermon or service or song has to have a gospel message. Many of Jesus’ parables/teachings taught us how to live, how to pray, how to serve. The teachers of the Passion conference are doing the same.


  85. Matthew, admittedly I’m biased, in that I agreed with the original post. Yet, as the contributors on this blog full well know, I’m willing to disagree with them. 🙂

    I’d like to make just one contribution to this discussion. You objected, up above, to Mark (TheJungleMissionary) having a “passion to demolish these leaders character and integrity.” I don’t see it. I see him objecting quite strongly to what some are teaching. I see him objecting to others (who are more sound in their teaching) providing support to those teaching error. I don’t see impugning of motives, or accusations of intentional dishonesty. I see him objecting to error and a failure of discernment. I see a few statements that could perhaps be taken as attacking character or integrity, but you certainly don’t have to take them that way. The overriding objection here is A) teaching and B) lack of discernment.

    But I do see you impugning character and integrity. “So what do i say to the girl being raped over 30 times a day.” That implies you are the one who cares, while those with whom you are disagreeing don’t — pretty horrible. Did you mean it that way? Maybe not. But if you go back, statements such as “just reaching to be right about something” and “Have you even thought of the fact that you could be wrong about them” (and other statements) are implicit accusations about character and integrity. The first implied Chris is proud and somewhat dishonest. The second implied Mark has no concern for truth. Intentional? That’s between you and the Lord, not my business. But these are statements about “character and integrity.”

    There is far more grounds to charge you with a passion to demolish the “character and integrity” of others than there is to charge Mark. Because for a very critical article (and it is very critical) he really didn’t go there much, if at all. Which shows he was being careful.

    A lot of words to say this. Make sure you have a good case before an accusation of character assassination, because you risk engaging in character assassination yourself. Think, before clicking “post”, about what your words imply about the other person.

    For what it’s worth. And I’m not trying to debate you, because I don’t have a clue what you were thinking when you wrote those things, and don’t need to have a clue — that’s God’s business, not mine. I’m just letting you know how some of it came across. And I really do wish you well. If the conference was positive in your life for increased faith, holiness, love, and service for the Lord, then I’m thrilled. No matter how much error there may have been, a sovereign God could bring good out of it in your life and the lives of others. That doesn’t mean the error was ok, it simply means God is very, very good.


  86. Gabriel, thanks for stopping by and leaving your thoughts. If you were to read through even just the last couple of months, you would see that we indeed seek to be very careful and to use discernment in who we bring to our readers’ attention. Our intention is not to tear down those who truly exhibit a desire for truth and that are doing the Lord’s work.

    To say that all those who taught or sang at Passion means they are doing the Lord’s work would be like saying that Mother Theresa of Calcutta was doing the Lord’s work. Sadly, Theresa actually went to her grave trusting in her own “good” charitable works and her faith in Mary in order to arrive into heaven. Sadly, many people find themselves in the same predicament without even realizing it. They think because they are providing clean water, good food, better medicine, great educations, freeing slaves, or whatever their passion has become that this somehow equates to salvation.

    The purpose of Passion could only be to raise leaders within the church if they had all been biblical in their doctrine and their approach. Several times we have mentioned certain individuals who were there, and still await one or some of you to refute what we have brought to your attention. Some of the leaders are outright heretics, others are on the border of either going down the path of false teaching, or the rest simply went about endorsing those who do believe those things.

    How can people whose doctrine is violently and diametrically opposed be working hand in hand to raise up church leaders?


  87. Thank you Jon for the encouragement. I will strive to be more careful with my words. But for what’s it’s worth, I just get defensive when I know that the gospel was preached fearlessly and accurately and that my faith grew stronger by Jesus showing me my sin THROUGH these teachers. But thank you for encouraging me. May God bless you.


  88. ATG, excellent words to think about in regards to “celebrity pastors and teachers.” Yes, we must focus on truth. For what it is worth to those who are reading and questioning my concerns about Passion, I would DEFINITELY have shared the same concerns about the theology had it been some no-name, non-famous individuals who were teaching. False doctrine is false doctrine no matter who is doing the teaching. Just because Judah Smith is doing the teaching or Louie Giglio does not make it any less heresy than if it was Pope Benedict who was teaching.

    Again, we are not called to privately address those who have made public issues out of their false teaching. For example, a Benny Hinn, T.D. Jakes, Joyce Meyer, and others have proven to the world that they are heretics. They are not members of my church so cannot be brought to discipline by my church, any more than I could brought before their church and disciplined. However, because they are not even members of the true Church of the living God, no discipline can be enacted anyway – it will only come down to final judgment when they stand before God – that is, unless they truly are brought to saving faith by the work of the Holy Spirit and confess and repent of their abomination.

    Matthew, I did notice your comments and I appreciate again the fact that you are still here. My prayer continues to be that you will stay and read other posts here, not just this one, and that maybe something here will show you what we are really about, and what our heart is all about. Thank you for your thoughts.


  89. TJM/TDP/Mark, Yes, of course. My comments were more generalized than your critique here.

    One question, maybe Matthew can answer it…Did Beth Moore actually preach? Any other women preach? I noticed Judah Smith and his wife are considered “co-lead pastors” of their church in Seattle. That isn’t a warning bell, that is as wrong as wrong can be.


  90. Thank you for taking my words with such a good spirit, Matthew. One more thought in regard to your reply. Some of these people have well-earned the criticism they receive for their teachings, even if they didn’t earn it this time. Because of that, endorsements are dangerous, and warnings are appropriate. Gratitude (for what you’ve received through someone’s ministry) and sober evaluation (and thus even criticism) need not be mutually exclusive. We can have both.

    If God used Balaam’s donkey (which as far as I know was not a particularly sinful donkey), He could even use John Piper. He could even use me! So we’ll be grateful when He does, but we still scrutinize what is said by the donkey, the Piper, and me :), and warn others if needed.


  91. I think the only lemonade we can squeeze from Passion13 would be something akind to what Paul was rejoicing in when writing to the Philippian Church. I don’t know any of those celebrity names except for Piper but Paul did say: Php 1:15 Some indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will.
    Php 1:16 The latter do it out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel.
    Php 1:17 The former proclaim Christ out of rivalry, not sincerely but thinking to afflict me in my imprisonment.
    Php 1:18 What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed, and in that I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice, …

    And if Matthew who was there live says that “this” Gospel was preached, so be it, I rejoice.

    My question to you Matthew is, tell us what Gospel of Christ was preached at Passion 13 in your own words and let us judge with the anointing of the Holy Spirit with us whose charge is to lead us into all Truth that Gospel?


  92. ATG, for your information, I am not a dispensationist in a serious sense. I do not claim that God’s law for the Israelites is not applicable to the law for us. I am not a biblical scholar and do not subscribe and study the different periods. For your information, I am a IT Programmer who just happen to be interested in the truth. I do believe that Christ is going to come down a second time and that He is going to do that at a future time. And I believe in the prophesies that has to be fulfilled in Revelation before Christ come. I do believe that the Jews are a special people and God do indeed has a special plan for them. I do not think you need to be a Christian Scholar to even grasp this fact. In fact, I think you would have to be in denial if you fail to see this. A person does not need to be a Christian to see the special roles that Jews play in this world. Whether it comes to economics, Science or even politics. Jews has always play a special part. It cannot be a coincidence that they are being persecuted at various points of history. Holocost, Marxism and even periods before that. Many of the great scientist and economist are jews. Now if the Jewish race was just like any race , they would have become insignificant due to their sheer numbers. Why is it that a particular race who despite their small numbers is so siginificant in world history. Why is Israel recreated even though it has been inexistent for more then a millenia.If you study about Isreal carefully, it was just created out of the blue. So yes, I am convinced that the Jews are indeed a special group and that God has a special plan for them. In fact Paul makes special references on the his race many times. To me it is pretty clear that Jews are a special race. But on a side note. To make a claim that the elect do not marvel at the beast is a very heretical claim no matter which biblical theology we subscibe to. It is clear in the scripture that Paul tells us to be wary of the antichrist. We are going against that when we ‘do not marvel’ at the beast. We are not to worship the beast but we are supposed to be careful of him. To me this is a heresy issue.


  93. Joe Gleanson:Romans 9:21. Indeed, God makes use of Vessels of Wrath fitted for destruction. So you are right. But just because those Vessels of Wrath are meant for destruction does not mean they are useless in God’s plan.


  94. TJM. I have to disagree with you on this. A no name pastor who preaches heresy is less of a threat that a pope benedict. No one listens to a no name pastor. Many people listens to pope benedict.The harm cause by a pope benedict is greater as compared to a no name pastor


  95. Sylar, we are not talking about no-name individuals but of pastors who are very well known and followed by tens of thousands.

    That aside, does it really matter whether the poison is spread by the ones, tens, thousands, or millions? Of course not, it is still poison! Nobody in their right mind would say that the Oklahoma City bomber was a “better” person because he is less known than a Saddam Hussein or an Osama bin Ladin!


  96. Sylar,

    some interesting things said there about Israel!

    You’re right about one thing and Scripture backs you on the special nature God holds towards Her.

    As I read what you wrote I immediately thought these verses: Deu.4:5 See, I have taught you statutes and rules, as the LORD my God commanded me, that you should do them in the land that you are entering to take possession of it.
    6 Keep them and do them, for that will be your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples, who, when they hear all these statutes, will say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’
    7 For what great nation is there that has a god so near to it as the LORD our God is to us, whenever we call upon him?
    8 And what great nation is there, that has statutes and rules so righteous as all this law that I set before you today?

    Then of course my mind went to the Church within and without Her (Israel) and these Scriptures: 1 Cor. 1:28 God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are,
    29 so that no human being[fn] might boast in the presence of God.
    30 And because of him[fn] you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption,
    31 so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”

    Then of course a lot more Scripture starting poping into my mind.

    The important thing is the nature of each, Israel and the Church.

    I’ve been to Israel and for the most part she’s very hedonist and secular. As long as your money is good and you don’t run out of it as a visitor you are very welcome there.

    The reality is no one can understand these following verses without the Holy Spirit’s help and that includes present day Jews: Gen.12:1 Now the LORD said[fn] to Abram, “Go from your country[fn] and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you.
    2 And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing.
    3 I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”[fn]

    That’s the essential thing here, this message, is it not? Do you have Faith? Has God blessed you too with Faith Abram lived with God with during his sojourning?

    God has been very specific about when the end shall happen and it seems to me from where I sit this should be our major focus, here, until it happens: Mat.24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

    Geesh, even King David understood this commission? See what he assigned Asaph to sing daily in the Tent: 1 Chronicles 16:31 Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice, and let them say among the nations, “The LORD reigns!”
    32 Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; let the field exult, and everything in it!
    33 Then shall the trees of the forest sing for joy before the LORD, for he comes to judge the earth.

    Where present day Israel plays into all that seems to continually be debated does it not?

    One last citation for your consideration from 2 Peter 3. Peter, a messianic Jew wrote this and it seems to me this what the Church should live doing before The Lord?

    2 Peter 3:11 Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness,
    12 waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn!

    I say we learn how to be hastening the coming of the day of The Lord! Will you?



  97. Sylar,

    You don’t have to be a biblical scholar for this discussion. I will point out though that those we learn from (i.e. our pastors and favorite authors) teach from a biblical theology framework. You words point to your belief in a dispensationist perspective of Israel…which I don’t see in scripture, but it is a respected view by many in the church today including John MacArthur. A more historic and traditional view like Piper sorta holds to doesn’t put the same weight into the “beast” the way a dispensational will. Dispensationalists are on pins and needles waiting for the anti-Christ (beast) to be revealed and for the great tribulation to begin. Those who hold to covenant theology or something in between like New Cov Theo aren’t watching for the Beast/anti-Christ in the same way because we see the end times differently. Neither is heresy, but it does affect the way we teach or the way we interpret the text. You’ll get massively different interpretations of Israel and Revelation, Daniel, Olivet discourse, etc. from MacArthur and RC Sproul.

    Now, I could be missing your point on the beast comment, but on the surface of what you said, not believing in a dispensational view of the anti-Christ isn’t even in the same solar system as heresy and many many many wise biblical scholars will say it is actually proper doctrine to oppose the view you are suggesting. However, I might no have your quote/point right. You might want to post that Piper quote so it can be examined more directly.

    In His Grace,


  98. It was made clear many times at Passion and had been for the past 6 i have attended, that we are all sinful. No one has anything in themselves holy. We all deserve death, and hell. We have disobeyed Gods law and just by breaking one law, we are condemned. But God, sent his Son who is God himself, to live as man perfectly. Jesus took my sin upon the cross and he died for me. But three days later, Jesus rose from the grave and defeated death! And if i confess my sins to Him with a genuine heart, and give Him my life, my all, then Jesus will stand in my defense on that day. He became my sin that knew no sin, to become my righteousness. And if this transformation truly happened, my fruit will be evidence of that. That was taught in big group. But was gone into great detail, Biblically, in our community groups. To answer the question as well as i know how.


  99. The quote that I posted above is the one that Piper mentioned. As I said, you can see that quote very easily in his facebook account. Even a Google would point to the tweet that he made. Just do a google and “If you don’t marvel at the beast, it is evidence that you are among the elect” and you will find that quote.


  100. Sorry ATG, but your understanding of dispensation theology is on the surface. A strict adherence of dispensation theology says that God’s law in the old convenent is not applicable to us. But that is a wrong interpretation because Christ said that He did not come to abolish the law but to fulfil it. In other words, the law is not being abolished. To say that dispensation theology is completely true is to ignore this verse. But at the same time. Paul clearly said that we are no longer under the law but under grace. There are many verses whereby Paul admonish those who still insist that others practices circumcision and the old customs. Christ said that the summation of all of the law of the bible is to love man and love God. Actually John Macarthur has a good explaination for this. Laws like circumcision is not needed anymore as Christ has already come and died for our sin. Tithing is not required as Tithing was set up to support the Levitian Priest. The building of the tabanacle is not required as Christ is already here. Laws on say killing or stealing an ox are not applicable because most of us do not rear oxes and oxes were the currency of the day.God set up . Kosher law certainly do not apply to us anymore as Paul said very clearly that every food is permisible but not every food is beneficial.The law still applies to us. That is why Paul said that scripture is profitable for teaching,rebuking,etc. The Mosaic traditions do not apply to us but the moral law as well as the spiritual law in the bible still apply to us. The holy spirit convicts us as to what we should follow as we read the bible and also as the elders in our church teaches us the word. So I do not follow dispensation theology because I respect the laws of the bible and I believe that what is being taught in the old testament is applicable to us.


  101. I made a reply here how come it dissapeared.
    ABG: NVM to sum it all, no I do not believe in dispensationalism in the strictest sense as I believe that the laws in the old testament is still applicable to us but not every old testament law is applicable to us. It is pretty clear from 2 Timothy 3:16. Christ did not come to abolish the law but to fulfil it. I seriously think that convenant theology or new covenant theology are heresies. In fact I have a very big issue with people like Gary North and Rushdoony. It is so evident that God has a special purpose for the Israelites. Through biblical references as demonstrated above by Michael and through special role that Jews play in the history of the world. The fact that convenent or new convenant theology tries to ignore that fact shows the disdain that the people who created those theology have for the word of God and for God’s Will. Your statement that it is ok to have different interpretation of scripture is illogical. It is like saying it is ok for 1 + 1 = 2 and 1+ 1 = 3 due to different interpretation of the scripture. If what I am saying is not the absolute truth that God is speaking through the word of God, it is a heresy. The same applies to you. It is because of the postmodernistic view that absolute truth does not matter that we have this mumbo jumbo of heresies appearing. Sorry but I do not accept the fact that it is acceptable to have different interpretation of scriptures.


  102. ABG: Are you implying that just because your doctrine follows a certain theology view that it is not heretical? So can I make the claim that because my doctrine follows the catholics view, it is not heretical because catholism is just another “biblical theological framework”?


  103. Sylar, I’m sorry brother, but you didn’t understand my comment above. I’d kindly suggest that you spend some time looking at the distinctions between dispensationalism and covenant theology frameworks before commenting on the topic.

    In his grace,


  104. Let me rephrase a bit…I reread and you do see the distinction of grace between the two. There is so much more though as related to Israel and the church and the kingdom and how we interpret eschatology, which was the original point.

    What you missed is that I am NOT dispensational and you elevation of the nation of Israel is based on you comments above.


  105. Sylar, its atg, not abg. 🙂

    your claim that cov Theo is heresy is not only false but laughable. I respectfully disagree to the utmost. I believe dispensationalism is false, only 150 years old or so, created under false pretenses, oddly rooted in racism towards jews by john nelson Darby, and creates dualistic redemptive plan…one plan for then church and one for Israel. That is just bad hermenuetics and bad theology. However, therein are good people on that side. These perspectives are acceptable in the discussion of orthodox christian doctrine. If you say covenant theology is heresy, you just threw most if not all the reformers under the heresy bus.you also are then calling RC Sproul, john Murray, John Calvin, James white, Goldsworthy, Greg Beale, Beeke, Waldron, Warfield vos, hodge, Horton, Jonathan Edwards, van til, bavink, machen, and so many others heretics…not to mention calling the westminster confession, helvetic confession, 1689 London baptist confession all heresy.

    I agree doctrine is vital and of course catholic doctrine isn’t acceptable. It is not illogical to allow room in Christianity for disagreements on secondary issues of which most of the frameworks discussion fit.

    I do see now why you thought that quote from Piper is heretical. I have to say you are wrong on that piece and misrepresenting good theology.


  106. Sorry ATG, I do know the differences but I see deeper into that. I have already answered the question that you answered and I told you I am not a dispensationist because of some of the other errors in that theology.


  107. As I said, I am not a theologian but I do read stuff and I know how off the track people like Gary North (off the track not only in theology but in economics) and Rushdoony are. So why should I spend time even looking at a system that is wrong at the foundation.


  108. I never ever said that you are dispensational. In fact from the words that you have written, I would have guess you are not. I am just saying that I am not a dispensationist even though my echastelogy coincides with that theology because the whole theology is fundamentally wrong due to the reasons that I have given above.


  109. As I have said earlier. I believe that it is possible for Godly people like John Macarthur to make a mistake. And that mistake is heretical by nature because it distorts the truth of God but that does not make John Macarthur a heretic because we know that he loves the truth and preaches the truth. We know that John Macarthur would retract the mistake that he makes once he is corrected and once the holy spirit convicts him of the possible mistakes on scripture that he makes. So even though it is possible that he makes a heretical statement it does not mean that he is a heretic. Just want to clear a point here.


  110. Sylar, it seems your objection to the Piper quote hinges on a slightly unfortunate interpretation of the word “marvel”. Let me try something here …

    “If you don’t marvel at the beast, it is evidence that you are among the elect”
    “If you’re not impressed by the beast, it is evidence that you are among the elect”
    “If you don’t think the beast is the most wonderful person in the world, and that he does NOT need a Nobel Peace Prize, it is evidence that you are among the elect”
    “If you don’t think the beast is THE BESTEST EVER!!!!!, it is evidence that you are among the elect”
    “If you don’t tell everyone they’re crazy if they don’t like the beast, it is evidence that you are among the elect”
    “If you don’t jump on the bandwagon for the beast, it is evidence that you are among the elect”

    I could go on, and on, but those who have ears to hear and are teachable will understand my point.


  111. Sorry ABG, but your post really leaves a distaste in me. But I do not want to say more since everyone here seems to have a high view of you. Never once did I ever said that Dispensation is the correct theology. In fact, I have proven to you why I am not a dispensationist. And your understanding of dispensation is totally wrong and off premise. Dispensation does not in any sense shows any racism towards Jew. In fact Dispensation actually regards Jews highly by saying that Jews are highly involved in spreading the Gospel when Christ arrives. Jews play a large part in the end times as they realise their mistake in crucifying their savior and thus become repentant as a nation and spread the Gospel. There is no 2 system of salvation. Most dispensationist believes that salvation comes through Christ. Just that dispensationist recognize the role that Jews play at the end times. To say that John Macarthur is a dispensationist shows your ignorance. He has claim many times that he is not. Covenent Theology at least the one that Gary North ascribes to believe that we should establish a Christian Nation before Christ comes but guess what. It ignores the verse which Christ says that His nation is not here but above. I am not going to change my perspective on Covenent Theology just because many great teachers believe in it. It is an unbiblical system no matter who believes in it. I have already stated that a heresy is a heresy if it is not the absolute truth that God intended in His Word. And this is my last reply to you because it seems that you are similar to Matthew Cannot here. You do not read post and you just want to defend what you believe in without looking at the points other people are writing.


  112. I read your post close enough to realize that you misspelled my last name and you keep referring to ATG as ABG, when he corrected you in a previous post. 🙂 As far as you misunderstanding Pipers quote, I’m sorry that i was so hostile towards you earlier and i can see how you could misinterpret it. But on the other hand, I am definitely no Bible scholar, but i can plainly see the point Piper was trying to make before Michael simplified it for us. I pray you forgive me for my earlier posts towards you.


  113. Sylar , you are all over the map on this stuff. I don’t know where you are getting your information. Gary North and rushdooney are NOT the guys I’m speaking of. Humble teachable spirits are open to hearing from other solid theologians (not me, but guys like G. Vos, GK Beale, M.Horton, etc) that God has gifted because we seek truth. I have studied both sides of the argument over several years and changed my position because of the overwhelming evidence of biblical truth in covenent theology…although i am not in full endorsement of it due to one or two small matters. Dispy I reject 90% of. Learning from gifted men of the past has been a great blessing and you are missing this great blessing because you are unwilling to hear from other solid and proven biblical teachers. We need to be humble enough to admit what we don’t know and humble enough to know we know very little. I’m just encouraging you to not shut out some of the best theologians ever because of your own presuppositions. The discussion is not relevant to this original post anyway, so I’ll just let it go with this encouraging nudge.

    In his grace,


  114. Sylar, as mentioned to others before, we are not going to permit people to come on here and throw out accusations and mean-spirited labels as you just did in your last comment. Not only did you call his character into question, but you sought to slander him throughout your comment. If that is the best you can do, then I am afraid you cannot be permitted to remain here making comments. We are MORE than willing to bear long with those who come here until you make the decision to make it person as you did with ATG, who has clearly evidenced his heart, his attitude, and certainly his love for the Saviour.

    I have every confidence in ATG and he is correct in that you are all over the board. You are not dispensationalist and you do not hold to covenant theology or anything in between. You bring guys like Rushdoony and North into the picture in some convoluted way, and had you read through our blog with a simple search then you would have seen that we are not in agreement with either of these two men and have pointed out their error on several occasions.

    You then try to point out that somehow if he believes the phrase you mention is correct, then he also endorses Arminianism, which you then continued by saying that he does not take the Word of God seriously. You then make the highly erroneous statement that Calvinism and Arminianism are identical with the sole exception of the matter of the nature of our salvation. I would submit to you that you have done very little study to have come to such a conclusion or have listened to a few messages from ministers who have no clue what they are talking about, because this is not the case.

    At this point, going forward, my recommendation will be to censor all your comments until you are willing to tone down your rhetoric against one who is a true believer in Christ. Further, I believe that for you to be able to continue that you should be considering an apology towards ATG for your unwarranted accusations and attempted slander.


  115. My post earlier was relevant to this blog. I am only still here to defend Jesus and what he does through Passion. If you read on 268 generation and what passion is all about, you will see it is more of an equipping conference for the saints between the ages 18 to 25. And YES, the leaders of passion realize that some people come are not true followers of Christ, so the gospel is also preached and proclaimed. And since I’ve been attending the last 6 years, you can read my previous comment concerning the gospel message taught and judge or discern according to the Holy Spirit what really goes on at Passion. I would also like to add that the most important part of passion are the community groups that are not recorded. This is where we get into groups and get to know people. This where the true gospel is able to be proclaimed in small groups. So I’m only defending what Jesus does through the conference. I was taught the same gospel at passion that seems to be the same gospel everyone here agrees in…so with that being said… I’m eager to hear your responses.


  116. Having read through your conversation with ATG, Skylar, I agree with TJM. You stepped over the line and have violated our rules of engagement. Currently, your comments are going to moderation and will not be posted until I have had a chance to review them. I highly recommend you read through the rules before you post any further. If you cannot adhere to them, you will no longer be allowed to post here.


  117. Matthew, did Beth Moore or any other women preach to the crowd? If so, did you sit under her teaching?



  118. Matthew,

    based on what you described above about the Gospel of the Kingdom being preached at this Passion 2013, I have to rejoice.

    Although I wanted to touch on one sentence exercising an overly abundant caution.

    You wrote: “He became my sin that knew no sin, to become my righteousness.

    Would you develop that and what you mean by saying or identifying yourself in that manner, “to become my righteousness”?

    I am a stickler for words and meanings of phrases and that one there doesn’t sit right with me so I just want to plumb the depth of the meaning there. What do you mean by saying “to become my righteousness”?

    I base this inquiry on this verse:

    Pro 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.

    And, what did you have to pay to attend this gathering this year? Has the price gone up each of the last 6 years you have attended?

    And one last probing question. Are you currently in a fellowship with a Pastor and Elders that you would safely say have a charge over your soul?

    bro michael, the other


  119. That we might become His righteousness. Sorry i messed up my words there. Only human. Yes Mrs. Beth did teach the Word of God but in no way took an authority role over any man. After all this was a conference for YOUNG men and women. We all have our convictions, this one for me is not one of them, but i don’t believe you can scream heresy because she taught at passion. And i am familiar with the scripture that you will probably throw at me, and at MY own personal church, women do not take role over the pastor. Or pastor is a man, he I’d our Shepard and i believe that is what God intended. But Beth had no authority there, simply a teacher since women were present, but if you are convicted by a woman teaching you, make sure it is because you are convicted my scripture and not pride. Also passion has cost the same as it always has and why is this an issue?


  120. Sylar, apparently you have not taken the admonitions of TJM and myself to heart. As such, your most recent post will not be authorized and you will not be allowed to comment further.


  121. Matthew,

    I find inconsistency in your thoughts here. You seem to see the importance of not allowing women to preach at your local church, but you feel that it is ok to sit under the preaching of women at a conference. I think that you are wrong about the authority side of it. By the nature of the invitation and the platform for her to preach, she has been elevated to equal platform with the other men teaching who are all by the nature of the conference taking the position biblical teaching authority over thousands of men and women. This reality is a major concern of mine. There are hundreds of big name, gospel-centric, Christ-centered men to preach at this conference…why would Giglio seek to elevate Beth Moore to this level of authority? This is after all a conference modeled in a shepherding, pastoral, “apostolic” teaching concept. By their format and approach (as with any conference), these are national leaders of the american church (similar to apostles in the early church) gathering together to teach a large segment of God’s fragile and impressionable sheep. How does Beth Moore enter into this level of authority? My suggestion is that she is invited because she is a celebrity who has sold millions of books and exposes a particular segment of the church to the Passion group. Because of this, I’m baffled at John Piper’s willingness to share the stage with her and endorsing her authority in the Word of God over the huge crowd of God’s sheep by accepting the spot.

    This is just something to think about and hopefully you can see that God’s call to preaching is much more serious than Passion is making it. I believe they are abusing God’s institution of preaching and pastoral leadership. Probably all conferences are at one level or another.

    Just sharing some thoughts out of love and concern, brother.

    In His Grace,


  122. Well here is where we find our differences at a standstill. No offense to Chris and I hope he doesnt take it this way, but i recently messaged him personally on Facebook, that he did not reply to. I took the liberty of looking at his pictures and dont get me wrong, I enjoy Star Wars and Marvel Characters. I dont know if you know what Im talking about but i believe, If I agreed with any of you on this subject of compromise, that Chris would be in a level of compromise which i would also be apart of. Now are we calling all spades spades, or just some spades spades? That comment has no intention of offending Chris, he is just the administrator here at DefCon, and are we really tking this whole defending thing seriously, or are we just debating?


  123. Matthew,

    thanks for clearing that up!

    Here’s why and take note of the use of the word “righteousness” in the following verses: Joh 16:7 Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.
    Joh 16:8 And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment:
    Joh 16:9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in me;
    Joh 16:10 concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer;
    Joh 16:11 concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
    Joh 16:12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.

    2Co 11:13 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ.
    2Co 11:14 And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.
    2Co 11:15 So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.

    So, you were not clear on the church government issue. Let me ask again. Of course I am prying into your personal Christian governance so if you don’t want to go further down that road it’s understandable and just let me know and I will back off? Do you attend a Church and consider your soul the charge of another, one God has joined you too by the leading of the Holy Spirit? Say, if for some reason, I felt you were in danger in some comments in here would there be someone I could call to talk with about that concern, with your permission of course?

    I realize you told us that came to the Lord at one of these conferences six years ago, was it? It seems fair to me that you would be so defensive of this Passion ministry that being the case.

    As for the costs of this conference. My point in asking is from the multitude of conferences I have been too and things I have done over the last almost nearly 40 years my ministry has not hesitated in spending money, lots and lots of money equipping the Saints. We have approached the mission of the Gospel from a point of view of “giving” not collecting. We want to bring the Gospel to the poor and down trodden.

    I have several Biblical positions from both the Old and New that elucidates this if you are interested in learning another perspective on equipping the saints for the work of service that each and every one of us is called into when elected and trained up and called in serving the Living God?

    The other thing is that is it my understanding that 60,000 people attended this conference this year?

    That might be an exaggeration but assuming there were a lot of attendees, plane fares or car fares and hotel accomodations and food must have made this 4 day event expensive for a lot of the attendees? And also because of the costs to incur made it impossible for a multitude of others who were envious to go?

    That being said, I just don’t see that Passion model as a Biblical model laid down by Christ or the Apostles to equip and establish the Saints in Truth? Can you point to some Scriptures that justifies this sort of thing, this sort of equipping model?

    Anyway just some ramblings and reasonings going on in my head. I did click on the link and listened to Piper speak there. He does exegete Scripture plainly, he makes the meaning plain!


  124. Matthew, were your comments directed at me? I’m really confused by your last reply above regarding Chris’ facebook, Star Wars and Marvel. I assure you that we are very serious about our purpose here. Did you consider my comments above about the nature of preaching God’s Word and the invitation of women preachers to the platform?


  125. Yes i did consider them. And I said our differences are here at a standstill. My comment was direct to all here at DefCon. And if I had pictures of star wars and marvel characters on my facebook, we would all be in agreement that i am watching and putting my mind somewhere it should not be, Therefore compromising. And I was just pointing this out because Chris is the administrator here, so my question remains. Are we serious here, or not?


  126. Matthew,

    I’m serious about the work I do. I have gone into harms way on a number of occasions.

    Would you take some time and consider my last post and respond appropriately?

    bro michael, the other


  127. Matthew, Ok, so to understand you clearly, you are ok with the downgrading of the seriousness and power of preaching God’s Word and the enormous importance of the shepherding role of God’s appointed preacher/pastor/shepherds at the national conference level and not willing to discuss it. BUT you have significant concern about Defcon now because our administrator enjoys Star Wars and Marvel Movies? From this end I kindly and lovingly want you to know that this sounds like a) majoring on the minors, b) self-righteous, and c) rooted in some form of legalism maybe. I’m not sure as I don’t know your heart. I can assure you that the seriousness of God’s appointed preaching model is far more important than Chris’ movie preferences.

    in His grace,


  128. Michael, my question to you would be, is this form of internet and blog the correct model in order to defend the gospel? And i could put myself in harms way as well, and i have for the gospel. Is this the only indication if seriousness?


  129. ATG, i as merely asking a question based on evidence based on the facts that i see in his life. Isn’t that what TJM has done with the “facts” of people on this blog. If we are being partial, just let me know and i will be on my way.


  130. Nope, it is not the same and no it is not partiality.

    Why would you in your silence defend Beth Moore preaching in an authoritative pastoral way over thousands of God’s sheep?


  131. I can not continue talking here, because if i do, i will sin. Just like i have already done. Please no one refer to me or my comments anymore. If you do you will be putting me in a situation i am currently not prepared for spiritually. This blog disgusts me and i am disgusted in myself. Thank you


  132. Matthew, you asked two questions.

    Michael, my question to you would be, is this form of internet and blog the correct model in order to defend the gospel?

    It would be one of the ways one defends the Gospel. I know of a Church and their Pastor whose services are all online. We live in a University community with about 12,000 students during school sessions so this brother thought up a way to reach students. He advertised a church service that would do live streaming. If you wanted to be a part of his ministry you were given a code so you could log in to his Bible Studies and services. It has taken hold here and there is growth.

    Of course when issues come up and there needs to be face to face time, that happens.

    Would there be some reservation on your part having debates and discussions using this forum?

    Is this the only indication if seriousness? I am not catching up on this question. Could you ask it again differently?

    bro michael, the other guy


  133. Wow, leave the conversation for a couple of hours and now my movie viewing habits are the source of conjecture! What a world!

    Matthew, I respect your desire to leave the conversation, so I am not going to ask you to answer any questions. However, I would be remiss if I did not at least attempt to address your statement of me. Regarding this message you say you sent to me, I simply never received it. This is likely due to the fact that I have my privacy settings set to not receive messages from folks other than my friends on the site. My apologies for not answering, but I did not know you had written to me. May I suggest any further attempts to contact be directed through the blog email, you will have more success.

    I find it interesting that not only did you take time to poke through my pictures, but given that you cannot view anything else on my page, you seem to find yourself qualified to make decisions about whether I am making compromises. Were you a friend on my page, you would likely find that movies of a science fiction and fantasy nature make up a very small portion of what I post. By and large, I spend most of my time discussing the gospel and the need for solid biblical preaching in our day.

    I am not saying these things to somehow have a better standing in your eyes, rather to point out you have made a snap judgment based on little to no information. Then you used that judgment to bolster your claim that no one should judge the glaring compromises made by many who were part of Passion 2013. In other words, you attempted to use me to deflect from the points raised by those who have been attempting to discuss this matter with you.

    As I said, I am not seeking for you to respond on this, as I sincerely respect to refrain from saying anything sinful. But I did feel it necessary to respond to your comments.


  134. On the topic of pastor celebrities and such, I looked back to Jesus’ ministry. Jesus was FAMOUS, hundreds, even thousands would gather to hear his teaching and witness his miracles. Now I’m not saying that chan or piper are Jesus, but the Holy Spirit, which is of Jesus, is within them. I will gove you the fact that there may of been some shakey doctrine AT TIMES, but that is the ploght of humanity. and through jesus righteous doctrine is reinstilled where earthly pastors may of fallen short. And therefore , a large following does not necessarily mean DANGER EVIL DANGER HELL AH! I do believe in being cautious and aware, but I hate for you all to forget the fame of Jesus’ own ministry as well as Paul’s! Jesus and his desciples were incredibly well known, so much so that they became martyrs and an ultimate sacrifice. Along with only stayi faithful to local pastors, I disagree. As you may have seen in the news many many sheep have been led astray by local pastors due to uncanny devotion. Paul himself continued to travel to many of the New Testament churches, never remaining at one place for a long amount of time. So just following one local pastor makes it easier for the devil, because all he has to do is strike down the head pastor and the whole flock becomes contaminated.


  135. Kira, read John 6 and you’ll see why Jesus had big crowds. They liked the miracles and the free food. Eventually, they bailed out on Him. Paul got himself stoned and thrown in prison and a lot of other things. If someone has a large following for long, there is probably something wrong.

    Where in the Bible are we told to have big conferences?

    Chris, I enjoy reading Tolkien. Some believe it is wrong, or unwise. I disagree. But since I acknowledge it publicly (as you do your movie tastes), it is certainly “fair game” for someone to ask whether it reflects on my discernment and seriousness as a Christian.

    Those in a public position (admin of DefCon qualifies) who make something public make it legitimate for discussion, especially when someone questions (as Matthew did) the concept of your public activity. Discernment in entertainment and discernment in doctrine / ministry are not entirely unrelated.

    If the publicly viewable portion of your FB page is not reflective of who you are, you might consider changing it?


  136. OK, I have had time to settle my thoughts a little. First my rebuttal to ATG would be that I clearly stated that I also enjoy the same movie entertainment as Chris, therefore also putting me in compromise, like I believe I stated. So I don’t see how I came off self righteous to you when that clearly was not my intent. But I’m sorry it seemed that way. Secondly, I was trying to make a point that was obviously missed and I blame myself and my words for that. Let me begin with saying that I enjoy Marvel, Star Wars, and I also enjoy reading Tolkein. I don’t find it unwise or wrong either Jon as I’m sure Chris would agree. My point was not to tear down Chris, because if that were the case I would tearing myself as well, but my point was that if we are going to hold these men that were discussed in this blog to such a high level of accountability, shouldn’t we also hold ourselves to that same high level of accountability? If we don’t, then we do seem self righteous ATG. And rightfully so. I just think by blowing off the fact that we watch secular movies and read secular books and say it has nothing to do with doctrine and ministry discernment, like Jon stated, then we become inconsistent and in the end, we are the ones who need call OURSELVES into question. I include myself in this. But I don’t think I have ever seen John Piper or any teacher at Passion promote anything having to do with their preferences in secular entrainment. They all stay pretty consistent with their main passion being Jesus and His fame. Not saying that they don’t enjoy what we do, but, as far as I see, they love Jesus with their WHOLE life. But we are all human, even these “celebrity” pastors.


  137. I would also like to ask you a question Jon if I may. Do you consider Paul Washer to be a pretty consistent preacher/teacher of the Gospel of Jesus Christ? I do. I was just wondering your take on him?


  138. @Kira, Hello. The model from the early church (Acts and the Epistles) is for small local congregations that are elder/pastor/shepherd led. Of course men fall horribly from the local level, I’ve seen several recently in fact. However, there is no biblical precedent outside of Jesus – who no pastor/teacher/speaker is – for larger conference gatherings, national church leaders, or national pastors. This is an Americanized Hollywood celebrity driven version of the church and not something modeled after the early church. We never say Paul write a letter to the “conference speaker of yada, yada”. On the local church level there is knowledge of the man’s heart and actions and personal life as well as the ability to remove him if necessary. I think in a lot of ways these same flaws found in conferences are found in mega churches. No one actually knows their pastor personally, they aren’t being shepherded and he isn’t held accountable, etc.

    @Matthew, I really appreciate your move to take time away and relax and come back level headed as to not sin. That is an admirable thing to do and we all need to do it more. I have not problem with your movie watching/book reading, Chris’ movie watching/book reading, or Jon’s…or mine for that matter. I watch the same secular stuff. As long as we are not caught up in pornographic or purely evil entertainment content, some secular entertainment isn’t a problem in my eyes. Discernment does not equal NO societal influence, it means that we discern what will lead us away from Christ and into sin versus what is “morally neutral” like watching the latest Avengers movie. So, this doesn’t call into question anyone’s faithfulness or seriousness about defending the gospel. God put us in the culture at this time in this country to be ambassadors to those around us with the message of reconciliation. This message can be confused and wrongly infiltrated with the message of fear and message of behavior modification for acceptance by God. We must be careful with our entertainment, but we must also be careful with falling into legalism. This is a battle we all face daily in our Christian walk. So, in short, I’m convinced that Chris and John and Brother Michael and Manfred and JungeMissionary and the other contributors and so many of those who comment are very very seriously committed to the defense of the truth. I hope that helps some.

    Now, Matthew, something you must consider responding to. I am not attempting to smear or attack you or push your buttons…I only care about the name and fame of 1 and that is Jesus Christ…I have outlined above a pretty serious case why I believe that Beth Moore’s involvement in this conference is an attack on God’s plan for preacher. I understand that you don’t want to talk about it, but if you don’t, this is the message you leave us with: “You are ok with an attack on God’s model of preaching by elevating a women to the heights of preaching fame through this conference.” If this is untrue and inaccurate regarding your position, please explain. There is no defensible position that squares biblically with women taking a “national preaching teaching authoritative pastoral role” at a huge conference like this.

    In His Grace and Mercy,


  139. You point is taken Jon, and perhaps I should have been more cautious in my phrasing. I am not saying that my life should not be open to scrutiny. Certainly it should, and I am open to correction and even rebuke when necessary. I had only hoped to point out there is a difference between having up a couple of pictures of movies you enjoy versus teaching falsely on repeated occasions (or joining with those who do). But you are correct that we should all be willing to be openly scrutinized. My apologies for any misperception I created.


  140. My take on Beth Moore teaching at passion is this. First, let me make clear that I believe that a woman should never have the authoritative role as a pastor of a church. As far as her being a teacher of the Word of God at a conference, I have no conviction at all. Because she was invited by Louie Giglio, I presume, and in no way during her teaching did she have an authority role and she was in subjection to leaders, who are male, and the only one who had authority during her teaching time should have been the Word of God,John 1:1, and i believe was. That is my stand point based on scripture that Paul wrote to Timothy.


  141. Matthew, I too appreciate your willingness to take the time to think the matter through. May I first apologize if I mischaracterized your previous comment. I was a bit confused by it and tried to respond based on what you had said. However, as Jon rightly pointed out, it seems I was making it sound as if my life should not be subject to scrutiny. I should have been much more careful in what I said, so again, my apologies. I have no special privileges, therefore, any rebuke or correction that is needed because I sinned in an area should be openly welcomed. It was never my intent to state otherwise.

    Regarding this comment, I am grateful for the clarification. I see now that you are trying to state that folks can find a myriad of areas where a Christian can be considered in compromise, including reading and viewing of secular material. However, like ATG, I believe there is a distinction between openly sinful works, such as pornographic or works glorifying evil, versus comic heroes or science fiction. A Christian who partakes of secular entertainment, I do not believe is necessarily sinning or compromising.

    That being said, the argument before us is that when a noted Christian who has been known for orthodox preaching (i.e. Piper) stands publicly with people who are preaching falsely, or have a history of false teaching, that person is giving credence to them they should never have. And people who are not discerning can be influenced to follow false teachers. There are many at the Passion conference who fall into that camp, which has been outlined in many comments here, so I won’t belabor those points. If Piper, Chan and others had stood on stage, preached an orthodox message and denounced the false teachings, I think we would have less concern for their associations. But as it stands, they made no such denouncement (unless someone can show us otherwise). Therefore, our concern remains.


  142. Matthew, follow the logic in the passage with me. In 1 Timothy 2:7, Paul tells Timothy that he was appointed to preach and teach as an apostle. He describes some of what they should be doing, praying, being modest, and not permitting women to preach. The 1 Tim 2:12 verse is in the greater context of Paul’s apostolic appointment to preach and the greater context still of the arrangement of leaders within the Christian church (which this conference is under). The passage:

    “10 but with what is proper for women who profess godliness—with good works. 11 Let a woman learn quietly with all submissiveness. 12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. 13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve; 14 and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor.” (1 Tim 2:10-14 ESV)

    Paul specifically uses the word “didaskó”, which is translated as “teach” in the ESV. Didasko is a verb defined as to teach, direct or admonish, instruct or depart knowledge. Then, he goes on to say OR to exercise authority, which is just that, to take authority or mastery over men.

    So, Giglio has violated Paul’s own conviction by allowing Beth Moore to impart knowledge, instruct, teach, admonish, direct God’s precious, fragile, impressionable sheep.

    Regarding John 1:1 and the Word of God. If you stand up and proclaim God’s Word…it is the greatest form of authority in the entire world. The authority doesn’t end in Giglio’s invitation, but it ends with WHO is proclaiming God’s Word to the sheep. God appoints those who proclaim his word, not other men…they can only recognize it. This is scary stuff. God plays no games with those who peddle or play with His Word.

    In His Grace and Mercy,


  143. I agree we shouldn’t peddle or play with His Word. And I have no conviction in the matter of Beth teaching. Im sorry. Pray for me I guess if you are right. Also the scripture is 1 Timothy, Not 2 Timothy. I don’t peddle, sir.


  144. Also ATG, regarding the scripture 1 Timothy 2:8-9, how much money does your wife spend on her clothes and earings? Assuming that you are married. That question goes out to every person on this site so that we may not peddle with God’s Word?


  145. Matthew, I’ve been given ability to read (and write) quickly, which gives freedom to participate in forums. But as a two-jobs pastor, relying on non-ministry income, I lack time to watch many sermons. I have not seen Paul Washer much. I Tim. 5:22 says to be slow to endorse anyone. Some people I respect think highly of him. That’s as far as I’ll answer your question.

    My opinion shouldn’t hold much weight, anyway. 🙂 Search the Scriptures. Read them, over and over, grow in grace and knowledge, and you’ll be equipped to evaluate teaching. If you’ve not read the Scriptures through multiple times, you may be vulnerable to confused / unbiblical teaching, so get reading, with prayer and humility.

    Many who attend conferences have never even read their Bible through once! If good things happen at a conference, praise the Lord! — but I wish they would read their Bibles. Did you know a moderate reader can read the entire New Testament in less than a day, the OT in three days, and it doesn’t require travel / restaurant / lodging expenses? 🙂 Did you know that you only have to read seven chapters a day and you will read through the entire Bible twice in a year? Most people can read seven chapters of the Bible in well less than an hour (though some chapters in the Gospels / Acts are longer).
    ATG: “There is no defensible position that squares biblically with women taking a “national preaching teaching authoritative pastoral role” at a huge conference like this.”

    Is there a defensible position that squares biblically with any such thing as a national pastoral role, or any authority at a conference, or the idea of a huge conference? A woman teaching? Mud on a pig. Take away the mud, it is still a pig. These conferences aren’t in Scripture.

    God can use them. He can even use a woman teaching in them. But, sufficiency of Scripture! Where is the Scripture for these conferences? Why didn’t Paul lead Passion 50 in Corinth, or hold a Greater Galatia Gospel Gala? Maybe we should forget the mud, butcher the pig, and use the money we’d spend feeding the pig to feed the poor.

    Thanks, Chris. Blessings to you.


  146. For me and my house: my now adult daughter made as gift to her mother (my wife) a framed poster several years ago, with pictures relating to the chosen text: 1 Peter 3:3-4 ” Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear—but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.” Our spending on clothing and other things mentioned and alluded to in this text has been miniscule. We’ve long joked that the whole economy would collapse if all Christians spent as little as we did on worldly things. (Do not mistake this for a self-deceived perception of personal holiness being held up as an example. We are far from good examples in too many areas. This is merely one example wherein the Lord has given us grace to not be conformed to the world.)


  147. “Maybe we should forget the mud, butcher the pig, and use the money we’d spend feeding the pig to feed the poor.”

    I like that you said that. Passion 2013 collectively gave over 3 million dollars to help prevent slavery. I emptied out my wallet. So hey… lol


  148. Follow-up to a comment made since I started my last one.

    Matthew, if you’ve ever stood in a pulpit and taught God’s Word, and seen the faces and the eyes of your listeners, you know there is authority in that role, unless you are so self-centered in what you are doing that you aren’t paying attention. A conference is not a church, so I would hesitate to say I Tim. 2 directly forbids this, but the principle most certainly applies.


  149. @ Jon – that was my point all along. The Americanized role I mention is absurd enough, and a woman in that role is beyond absurdity. Good description on the butchering the pig. I agree completely. God can and does use false teachers to impart the gospel in spite of the teachers…but is certainly isn’t something we want to endorse or participate in.

    @ Matthew –
    a) Yes, thank you for catching my typo. I’ll edit it asap.
    b) maybe you need to slow down a few notches and be more thoughtful about what is written to you
    c) i didn’t say YOU were a peddler of God’s Word…I was referring to Giglio and Moore being in danger of being peddlers if not already there. I wasn’t talking about you.
    d) I can assure you that my wife faithfully accomplishes Paul’s instructions here. She is prayerful, submissive in a beautiful Christ centered way, is modest and not flashy, frugal and appropriate for the culture we live in.
    e) Not having a conviction on the Beth Moore side of this Passion conference should be a warning signal for no conviction on the whole thing. I believe this is JungleMissionary’s point all along…many Christians don’t have convictions about any of these things.
    d) My goal here is to challenge you into thinking about what is and isn’t ok…just as you asked about the movies. I can’t wrap my mind around how you see the importance of questioning if we all should be sitting and watching a Star Wars or Avengers movie…yet you have no interest in questioning if you should be sitting under a woman teacher, some very odd teachers, and attending a conference with very questionable theology. Do you see what I mean? I mean this in the most sensitive and encouraging way. Take that discernment question of the movies and turn it on the teaching/preaching that you are under or where under at the conference.

    I would also encourage you to not hold your position if you see holes in it. We (speaking to all of us) can’t be prideful in our thoughts. Very often others point us to truth and it hurts. My dear friends and accountability partners, pastors, and my wife regularly show me where I am wrong and it always feels like a punch in the face. My choice is to step back from that position, and adapted to truth or to be prideful and hold onto it because I don’t want to look bad and look like a fraud. Well, we are all frauds all the time and we don’t have to fight for our reputation if we find ourselves on the wrong side of truth. That is how we learn and grow and then disciple others. 🙂

    please take my words in the spirit that they are intended: in the love of Christ for his fame and glory alone and for all our growth toward him.



  150. Jon, i see your point about being in a pulpit. But doesn’t it seem like we might have some pride issues if we actually feel that way that you said behind a pulpit.

    My point in all if this, ATG, if to challenge all of us, so we don’t post these blogs so carelessly, even if we think we have been careful. My understanding of the scripture is different than yours and we have our standards. What you think is not “flashy” might be different from someone else…. Where I think a woman can teach and where she cannot is my thoughts. So… I’m going to work. See you guys later


  151. Matthew

    Is it because you had several others engage you that you have not addressed my inquiries? Or are my questions too personal for you to open up too?

    I hope it’s just an oversight and you are taking exception to my questions?



  152. Matthew

    I wrote: “I hope it’s just an oversight and you are taking exception to my questions?”

    That sentence should have the word “not” taking … In there!


  153. “Passion 2013 collectively gave over 3 million dollars to help prevent slavery.” That’s great. I am sure some of the programs will be effective, and for Christians to support them is to the glory of God.

    With 60,000 people, $3M is $50 / person. That is a very good average gift. The registration fee was $219 / person, right? That works out to over $13 million on the registration fee alone. Add meals, lodging, travel, parking, bus fares.

    Total outlays by God’s people of GOD’S money for the conference have to have exceeded $25 million. Perhaps closer to $50 million.

    Maybe the pig should be butchered after all. 🙂


  154. “Jon, i see your point about being in a pulpit. But doesn’t it seem like we might have some pride issues if we actually feel that way that you said behind a pulpit.”

    Hopefully, it scares the preacher to death and makes him take his responsibility very, very seriously. But you are correct that pride is a great danger to the preacher, which is why a novice is not to be a pastor, and why I Peter 5 has the emphasis it has. That is also, I believe, why we are told that elders in particular are to be publicly rebuked when they sin (I Tim. 5:19-20).

    I need to drop out of this conversation now. May the Lord guide His children.


  155. Yeah that is a ridiculous amount if money. But let’s remember that things are not free in this world. And that there was a goal of equipping the saints there and money is not a factor, because number one, God doesn’t need our money anyway. Because your right, it is His. And I just saw a conference that Paul Washer will be teaching at and registration is the same as passion. I know you personal funny care,Jon, but our friends here love Paul, as do I. But they are also giving away free ipads at this conference and that did not happen at passion. They also charge for the internet feed, which passion did not. We also got 2 free meals at passion…..so i thought my friends would like to know that. It’s called G3 conference if you are interested to look it up


  156. “Jesus Culture” certainly seems like a post modernist affair based on experience, feelings and emotion rather than contrition and repentance. From some of the videos i have seen, the rock concert style of highly charged emotion along with idolizing of the performers from some tranced out looking attendees was very visable. There are some worrying statements made on the Jesus Culture web site that are far more new age than biblical. For example ” They would be connected with spiritual fathers and mothers and aligned under their covering” As a former new ager myself i see little difference between the Jesus Culture and the Theosophical Lucis Trust as even they “love” jesus. see http://www.lucistrust.org/en/meetings_and_events/three_major_spiritual_festivals/the_christ_s_festival/the_reappearance_of_the_christ_booklet


  157. Michael I think that is awesome about that internet site. I’m sure it isn’t as useless as this one. I actually feel sick that I’m still here. Lol. But I was just asking if putting yourself in harms way the only indication that we are serious?


  158. Matthew

    Going out on a limb here I noticed you said to remember nothing is free of charge in this world.

    That’s partly my concern here with “money” making machine “Passion 2013”!

    Weigh your concerns raised in here repeatedly with mine basis these verses from Scripture from one who with God’s Grace was able to do the work he was given free of charge :

    1 Cor. 9:
    18 What then is my reward? That in my preaching I may present the gospel free of charge, so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel.

    2 Cor. 11:
    7 Or did I commit a sin in humbling myself so that you might be exalted, because I preached God’s gospel to you free of charge?

    What I am sensing is a desire within your heart to be of service to the Lord in any capacity, Matthew? Would that be fair to think that way about you?


  159. Matthew, you mentioned Michael and a website that was mentioned. Did you mean the “lucis trust” website mentioned by Andrew?

    I am sorry that you feel this website is useless. We have been blessed to be able to assist many down through the last five plus years. Maybe it is all in the perspective of how we see the truth of Scripture versus how you see it.

    For example, you have been asked and been permitted to still comment about a few points of theology or false teaching being endorsed by the leaders of Passion. Yet, you still have not answered those questions. Instead you throw out red herrings about Marvel Comics or ask how much is spent by ATG’s wife on jewelry!!! By the way, I thought ATG was VERY gracious to even answer you over a matter that is absolutely none of your business or mine!

    You then give an answer about the unbiblical teaching of Beth Moore with a simple answer about that is not how you view things. No biblical answers just a return to your own feelings or emotions to drive your answers.


  160. Matthew,

    Again I am approaching this from an entirely different paradigm and mindset.

    You asked if “…I was putting myself into harms way …”.

    As grounded “disciples” we are to be led of the Spirit so there is little or no room for choice making. Remember Jesus is and is fully financed so to speak building His Church. Sometimes I wonder if we have forgotten that and Christ’s authority to finish the Work?

    For instance consider these two verses and ask yourself if you doubt either one of Their ability to accomplish what these verses indicate?

    Phil. 3:20 But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,
    21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.

    1Peter 5:10 And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.
    11 To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen.


  161. @ Jon G – I understand you thoughts on the conference not being = to a church and whether the passage applies to such. I am thinking through that myself. The conclusion I have come to is that we have no biblical precedent for a conference in the first place, and they are run like a church service and as a combining and extension of several churches because the pastors/speakers come together to encourage the saints. So, I have to settle in that a conference is an extension (large extension) of several churches and since they are formatted as church services they are under the umbrella of New Testament’s teaching on leadership in church. What say you?

    @ Matthew, our hearts are deceitfully wicked. We want to keep watch on our own reliance on our own thoughts and interpretations of scripture. Good counsel and diligent study helps us all.



  162. ATG, I’m trying to drop out. 🙂

    We’ve invented something not in Scripture that pretends to act like a church. If we must pretend, it is surely best to respect Biblical principles that apply to a church while pretending. Bible teaching should follow Biblical principles on teaching in the church. Alleged corporate worship should respect Scripture about corporate worship in the church. If you must do conferences, you should at least try to apply Biblical principles, rather than flout them. It’s still a pig, but less mud is undoubtedly better. 🙂

    So many faithful pastors and missionaries are struggling to make ends meet, while Christians spend millions going to hear the celebrity preachers and bands. Can’t be right. And they don’t have time to even read their Bible through once a year, but they can take several days to go get excited and have their ears tickled. And then they go home, and ordinary Pastor X isn’t as eloquent as John Piper, and ordinary song-leader Y isn’t as exciting or talented as the guy at the conference, and this church leaves me cold compared to the excitement of the conference. So I think I’ll just stay home this Sunday and watch the Passion Church online. Or if it was a more sound conference, I’ll watch Paul Washer online instead.

    Keswick has packed them in every year for a long time, while the churches in Britain have been dying. Unsurprisingly, the quality of teaching at Keswick has become more and more, well, mixed.

    Blech. I like bacon, but live pigs smell bad before long even if they aren’t overly muddy.

    Matthew, if Paul Washer teaches at a conference, that is also a pig, his presence might count as lipstick on the pig, but a cost that high is, IMO, mud. 🙂 But I suspect there will be a lot less muddiness of shaky doctrine / women-preaching / emotionalism, which is undoubtedly better.

    I might sound opinionated. 🙂


  163. “Matthew, you mentioned Michael and a website that was mentioned. Did you mean the “lucis trust” website mentioned by Andrew?”
    Indeed, as the post came right below my post and Michael had not posted a link to a website, i can only assume the same as you TJM. For the record the Lucis Trust (formerly known as the Lucifer trust) is a luciferian/theosophical/new age/satanic website that pays lip service to Jesus for it’s own agenda.
    It was only used for an illustration to highlight how Satan can appear as an angel of light and uses the new age and a false Jesus to infiltrate the Church.


  164. I didnt even acknowledge your post andrew, sorry. I was talkin to Michael and a website he mentioned. Read farther back. He didnt post a link. But Im really leaving this conversation, because yes Jon, we all sound opinionated and quite frankly, I dont care anymore. No one picked apart Washers’ conference because it wouldnt help your case. Fare thee well gentlemen 🙂 For real this time. Haha


  165. Maybe you will consider Giglio’s “compromise” my friends

    “Dear PCC Family,

    Though I was invited by the President of the United States to pray at his upcoming inauguration, after conversations between our team and the White House I am no longer serving in that role. I sent the following statement to the White House today:

    I am honored to be invited by the President to give the benediction at the upcoming inaugural on January 21. Though the President and I do not agree on every issue, we have fashioned a friendship around common goals and ideals, most notably, ending slavery in all its forms.

    Due to a message of mine that has surfaced from 15-20 years ago, it is likely that my participation, and the prayer I would offer, will be dwarfed by those seeking to make their agenda the focal point of the inauguration. Clearly, speaking on this issue has not been in the range of my priorities in the past fifteen years. Instead, my aim has been to call people to ultimate significance as we make much of Jesus Christ.

    Neither I, nor our team, feel it best serves the core message and goals we are seeking to accomplish to be in a fight on an issue not of our choosing, thus I respectfully withdraw my acceptance of the President’s invitation. I will continue to pray regularly for the President, and urge the nation to do so. I will most certainly pray for him on Inauguration Day.

    Our nation is deeply divided and hurting, and more than ever we need God’s grace and mercy in our time of need.

    The issue of homosexuality (which a particular message of mine some 20 years ago addressed) is one of the most difficult our nation will navigate. However, individuals’ rights of freedom, and the collective right to hold differing views on any subject is a critical balance we, as a people, must recover and preserve.

    As a pastor, my mission is to love people, and lead them well, while lifting up the name of Jesus above anything else. I’m confident that anyone who knows me or has listened to the multitude of messages I have given in the last decade would most likely conclude that I am not easily characterized as being opposed to people—any people. Rather, I am constantly seeking to understand where all people are coming from and how to best serve them as I point them to Jesus.

    In all things, the most helpful thing I can do is to invite each of us to wrestle with scripture and its implications for our lives. God’s words trump all opinions, including mine, and in the end, I believe God’s words lead to life.

    My greatest desire is that we not be distracted from the things we are focused on…seeing people in our city come to know Jesus, and speaking up for the last and least of these throughout the world.

    Honored to be your pastor,


  166. The fact that he no longer seems to call homosexuality sin is enough to write him off as apostate. We do not have the right to endorse the so-called rights of those who believe that homosexuality is normal behavior. Homosexuality is no more of a right before God than abortion or polygamy would be!


  167. TJM,

    I don’t think you read the blog closely enough or researched why he posted that blog to make an assumption that he doesn’t call homosexuality a sin. Dig a little deeper my friend. You can do it!!


  168. And to be honest with you Manny, the illustration used from the scripture in Ezekiel was an illustration. That wasn’t presented as the Gospel!! It was an illustration. Are we too good to use illustrations from the bible to help describe the transformation that takes place in our lives when Jesus takes control?


  169. Oh, actually I have done plenty of research to realize that even as he said addressing the issue of the sin of homosexuality has not been in his list of priorities for over 15 years! Pretty clear cut reading in plain English.

    He even comments later on his post that we must accept all people and get along. Nowhere does he affirm his original comments he made 20 years ago. Easy to understand why though – greed and no fear of a righteous holy God.

    If he were to take such a stand, he would never build up his Passion conferences to 60,000! Makes me wonder what other sins he is willing to cover for the sake of expediency!

    By the way, we speak of research and to search the Scriptures and you just ignore us or you pass it off as being merely our opinion on the verses. Very interesting. I was hoping for something different from you when we let you first stay.


  170. No we are not, but his use of the passage in Ezekiel was out of context just or starters, but then again I addresses this as has others. Obviously those were comments you must have overlooked in your haste to defend te false teaching of Louie-Louie!


  171. Ha Ha. Louie- Louie! That’s clever TJM. I didn’t over look comments. I just didn’t agree with them. Just like I don’t agree that the scripture was taken out of context by Louie- Louie. You just dislike the man so much, that you will take anything and everything to call him a false teacher. Anything you can get. Here is my challenge to you sir. You ready? Delete your blog. Become famous for preaching the gospel. Help gather 60,000 students for the sake of the Gospel. Get invited by the President to pray at his inaugural. Decline it. Take the persecution from others from blogs. Then….. I want to see how you shape up….Then…. write your blog. With all due respect Marky Mark 🙂


  172. Wait a minute…. I didnt overlook your comments.. okay its straight. I dont want you to pick me apart.. Im torn from your bullying


  173. “Become famous for preaching the Gospel.” You’ve absolutely got to be kidding me. Matthew, have you ever read I Corinthians 1?

    Louie didn’t get invited because he was famous for preaching the Gospel. He got invited because he is involved in a type of social work which a left-wing politician can spin for his own political advantage. “See, I’m against sex slavery, so I’ve invited Louie!” He’s done nothing substantive in office to help with the problem, and his party’s policies encourage rather than discourage lustful behaviour, which exacerbates the problem. But that’s ok. It’s enough to invite Louie, so he can position himself as “taking a stand.”

    That’s why Louie was invited.

    If a Muslim got uninvited from something for a speech he’d made against homosexuality, would that mean he was persecuted and be evidence that he was a good follower of Christ? Come on, Matthew, you’re more logical than that.

    And Louie’s response is pathetic, because he actually distances himself from the truth about homosexuality, implying that he would no longer say that anymore.


  174. I’m not saying that it was Giglios intention to become famous. I’m just telling you what he is up against. That is all Jon.


  175. Giglio’s words

    “If you look at the counsel of the word of God, Old Testament, New Testament, you come quickly to the conclusion that homosexuality is not an alternate lifestyle… homosexuality is not just a sexual preference, homosexuality is not gay, but homosexuality is sin. It is sin in the eyes of God, and it is sin according to the word of God.”


  176. Matthew – I do not answer to “Manny”.

    Your belligerence regarding the link I posted indicates you may not be interested in both sides – only yours. As for Russell Young – he’s another man who has done good for kingdom but has also “gone wide” and deceived himself and others. I’ve read too much from his pen to believe him to be more credible than Chris Rosebrough.


  177. Also Jon, I believe that is your implication on Giglio’s response. Not the implication that the Washington post got. Which is what matters right? The lost and dying world?? The one that nees Jesus. That’s what this is about right?

    Manfred, Sorry! I thought it was cool to call out nicknames since the writer of this blog deemed it necessary. I’m sorry though. It was my thought that it was cool to do. 🙂


  178. Matthew, it is very true that a lost and dying world needs Jesus, but which Jesus is being handed out?

    The health, wealth, and prosperity Jesus of Benny Hinn, TD Jakes, and Joyce Meyer?

    The New Age quasi Roman Catholic rooted Jesus of Judah Smith, Louie Giglio and now even Beth Moore?

    The Jesus that is there at your beck and call to make your life easy and never call you to die to self and is simply a convenient means to make money off of like Crowder and Jesus Culture?

    None of the above are the true Biblical Jesus.

    By the way, we will not continue to rehash the same material with you over and over with the hopes that you can prove your point about the heresy being preached and being endorsed by those at Passion. We have presented enough to prove to the discerning mind the truth about these individuals.

    The response from Giglio was more than enough proof on his position on homosexuality. It was straight from the horse’s mouth so to speak.


  179. You are right. No need to rehash. You failed miserably at proving your point. And regarding this Jesus you think was taught about health and wealth. Maybe you should listen to John Pipers message one more time since you missed it. By the way I’m sure Giglio looked over that message and gave it approval.


  180. Matthew, I agree that your tone is merely one of belligerence now. You have set up these people in your mind as being more important than the truth of Scripture.

    You have threatened over and over to leave. You may want to follow your own counsel further and find a blog to comment on where false teachers and their teaching is the accepted norm.

    Thank you for stopping by though and we will pray that one day The Lord will grant wisdom to see the truth of His Word.


  181. Okay so you are deleting my comments again that directly say something positive about passion 2013. This site is dumb. I’m done


  182. Matthew, the only way any further comments will be permitted to remain here will be if you go back an answer the questions you have already been asked. I would recommend that you research your answers with prayer and an open Bible for if you are truly a child of God, the Holy Spirit will guide you into truth. This is out prayer for you.


  183. If you would be gracious. Please delete all my comments here. Because if all mine are not to be shown, i don’t want any of them shown.


  184. If my request about all my comments being deleted is not met, i have an email already typed to wordpress.org I need your cooperation


  185. Matthew, I have received your email and reviewed your request. However, you freely posted those comments publicly and they now frame the context for the discussion on this thread. As such, we are under no obligation to remove them. While we will prevent further comments that continue to be belligerent and rehash excuses that have already been addressed, the conversation that exists on this thread will remain in it’s current form.


  186. I think Matthew made some good points that were overlooked. Maybe that’s why he got a little hostile. Just a thought.

    Tony S.


  187. Tony, thank you for stopping by. Matthew’s comments were not overlooked. The problem is that he continued to threaten about what he was and was not going to do including leaving the blog on multiple occasions. One of the issues is that we addressed his concerns and asked him questions and asked him to respond from a Biblical perspective and this he refused to do for a variety of reasons, one of which seemed to include the fact that as he was an attender at Passion for 6 years that he felt they obviously could do no wrong. We were more than longsuffering and have still extended to him an opportunity to return provided he offers a comment that addresses all of our questions that were asked of him and to seek to provide an answer from the Bible, not from emotions or feelings or based on the popularity of others. As can be seen, his belligerence surfaced on several occasions and he decided that since we were not going to play ball his way that he would just pack up, go home, and wanted the memory of the game erased from all those who played along with him.

    In the end I did offer to honor his request, but I am not the owner or the administrator of the blog. I was in the process of removing the comments when Chris made a very legitimate and valid concern that much of what had been said would no longer be understood if his comments were removed. He willfully and freely placed them in the public domain and so it was decided that they should remain. He then proceeded to again label me and cast dispersions without knowing the full situation. This has been a common tactic from the very first time he showed up here and responded with a large degree of hostility because his comment was not put up in his timing!

    As to his points being overlooked, I think our team was MORE than gracious responding to him despite his lack of humility, lack of grace, and his great deal of belligerence and avoidance of key questions. We would still love to help him should he return, but we will not be bullied with pettiness.


  188. TJM,

    I completely understand your points. Trust me :). But i do understand that you told him you that you would honor his request? I collected that in your previous post. I think you should have told him that you would honor it if it want your call to make. Makes you guys kind of look bad. Even if he did completely ruin his defense, which he did. But I think his request should be honored since it was told to him. Maybe just learn from this and if a problem occurs like this again, just let Chris handle it. Saying this in love and concern.

    Tony S.


  189. This whole end to exchanges with Matthew is one of the reasons I do not favor these sorts of conferences? I don’t see any discipleship fruit coming from Matthew, as a disciple of Christ after six times at this conference.

    What I do experience is a critical eye on the part of Matthew and what seems to be an inability to hear divergent positions.

    Is there any good that comes out of this sort of event? Maybe so and if there is we certainly will be giving the Lord the Praise for it!

    I just believe we are out of bounds when we do that sort of event?

    I believe God “adds” to His Church daily such as are being saved. If you have ever been married and had children you realize quickly the realities and dangers that infant is surrounded by even by parents!

    I don’t believe this is a poor example of being born again.

    Just consider Christ who was most likely 20 years their junior when calling Peter and his gang “children”: Joh 21:4 Just as day was breaking, Jesus stood on the shore; yet the disciples did not know that it was Jesus.
    Joh 21:5 Jesus said to them, “Children, do you have any fish?” They answered him, “No.”
    Joh 21:6 He said to them, “Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in, because of the quantity of fish.

    Notice two things. One, He addressed them as “children” and two, He brought them a great amount of wealth for that day in one catch!

    Is God against making men wealthy? No I think not.

    Although, having been a spy of sorts among this circle of men, I have been privy to insider conversation as to the motivation for this size and quality of conference! We ought too as Mark has done so well with his article just call a thing what it is and let the chips fall where they will.

    I am praying for Matthew. And I quite understand his defensiveness in here in support of Passion 2013 seeing as he testified himself he came to know the Lord through one 6 years ago.

    It’s debatable if he really came to know “The Lord” but if Jesus can use a donkey or allow Satan to use the vocal cords of a snake and use guys like us besides to get His message across to His sheep who undoubtedly do “hear” His Voice, I suppose He can use Passion 2013 and beyond to reach whomsoever He wants to reach?


  190. A question for those here who are defending and contending: Is it possible you are ever wrong in your understanding of Scripture and your assessments of those you criticize in light of that understanding?


  191. The constant teaching of the Catholic Church throughout the ages has been that salvation is bestowed alone by God’s grace. This was not the singular discovery of the Reformation. And Faith & Wisdom are a Pre-requisite to Know & Respond to that Grace of God which he freely bestows on the good and bad alike. We have heard from the beginning that the People of God perished & are being perished by the lack of wisdom. So we will bravely stick to the words of our Saviour, Blessed are the poor in the spirit, the poor at heart who have tasted & seen the things the world has to offer and have come to a realization to what really matters in Life; theirs exclusively is the KINGDOM of GOD. You will find PEACE amidst chaos that is the KINGDOM of GOD where the chosen ones rejected the invitation of God to his heavenly banquet and God had to bring in the passer-by and the men along the highways and street corridors. Lastly, where Grace, Peace & Mercy are found is where Christ Jesus lives. Your thesis is really brilliant but poignant. It’s time to let go of Hatred get to know the truth. Do not be satisfied with the bits that fall off the table, it is just not enough to get by. Get to know the Catholic Faith better and then decide about hating it. Peace of Christ to you. You have to be Pre-destined in order to be established. Christ has thus established and the Powers of Hell cannot triumph over it as Long as the Risen Christ Lives. God Bless


  192. Mario, thank you for stopping by. I am afraid that you have been grossly misled for the RCC has NEVER believed that salvation is by grace through faith in Christ alone. They do not believe this today nor do they teach it. The RCC has made it abundantly clear that anybody who believes and teaches this is to be considered a heretic and condemned.


  193. Again what we have on display is post modern emotion verses logic reason maturity and sound doctrine. Playing upon peoples emotions will be, I believe, a main part of the coming apostasy. We are to worship Jesus in spirit and in truth. We cannot obey that verse until we firmly understand truth. Titus 1:9 demands mature elders, such as famous pastors and teachers, must know how to both explain and defend the gospel, as these Contenders do. I would also warn those who would cry “your should not tear down others” to read Matt. 7:21 . By your standards Jesus is just tearing them down. Jesus knows and accepts His own. Jesus also neither knows or accepts those who are not his own. Yet these goats were very certain that they were his sheep. Sincerity, as many people including the LDS will also discover, is no substitute for TRUTH. Perhaps if someone had loved them enough to discern and confront them they would not have remained so deeply self deceived and so eternally damned.. .


  194. Brother, thanks for your concern. Grace is an ocean. Surely, neither do I believe that Grace through Faith in Christ Alone will Save me. For to me Christ is no superman with the Gift of Salvation, Christ came exclusively for the Jews who according to the Divine Plan were made Blind so that the Salvation may reach to the Gentiles. So that By the mercy shown to us they inturn will receive mercy when the time of the gentiles are being fulfilled. And we Catholics through the love of the Father revealed in Christ Jesus and the working of the Holy Spirit, Worship the Triune God who revealed himself to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and so forth & so on. A Father who is true to is promises, a Father who has established an eternal covenant by destroying our enemies(Satan & His forces) and making them Christ Jesus’ footstool. We believe in Grace, Works & Faith preceded & caused by Grace. Even the evil one knows about the power(Grace) of Christ. How is just Grace alone going to save me? How can i clasp the second person of the trinity to attain my salvation. I’d be caught unawares. I believe in the whole bible & the handed down tradition. There is only one foundation, people cannot lay another foundation so they build profoundly upon the laid foundation to their own ruin. Man’s greatest enemy is His intellect. The Psalmist says, I have not sought for things to great for me neither have I engaged myself with things too sublime. One thing I ask of the LORD this I seek: To dwell in the LORD’s house all the days of my life,
    To gaze on the LORD’s beauty, to visit his Holy temple. Preaching the word is important but being built upon the word is even more important. Bless you!


  195. Brother do not be offended by my statement. By your aspiring posts, it is simply visible to me that you have found grace(say a part of it), you will find Peace & Joy that surpasses all wisdom and understanding when you Come Home. Well each of us have an homecoming, let’s just say “born again” like the evangelicals. Where nothing matters, rich or poor, educated or uneducated, except Christ Jesus the King, High Priest & Prophet, who is all in all. You see plainly because, in the end of the day, LOVE is what we are all after. I am inspired by your discernment in the written posts, it very much helps to build each other up if we are docile & open to dialogue. We do not have to try so hard to prove anything,for like you say God gives us Grace and we cannot earn it. Each of us are lovely even with our scars. God love you 🙂


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