Welcome back ladies and gentlemen and thank you for joining us in session six. In this conference series we looked briefly at some of the individuals who were scheduled to speak at the New Springs Leadership Conference last October in order to reveal the secrete manipulative tactics they use to merchandise the saints (and the ain’ts), and to stay in power. Rick Warren was also scheduled to speak at that conference, but there was a change in the lineup at the last minute and Pastor Andy Stanley of North Point Community Church, Georgia, replaced him. As Stanley replaced Warren as headliner, and many are unfamiliar with him, he warrants more attention (Warren’s infamies are already well documented). We are resuming our conference series in response to the announcement that New Springs Leadership Conference has also become a series, with the next one scheduled for September 2011.
If this is your first time attending this conference, I encourage you to begin by attending session one so that you can better arm yourself against false teachers. This session might be called “Coexisting with Andy Stanley,” but that would be impossible for the discerning saint; either he will have to go, or they will need to leave his building. I can make this pronouncement after having done the dirty work for you. I recently endured the torture of listening to a message of Stanley’s in order to bring you another session in the conference series, the: Church of What’s Happening Now.
In a segment of a series he produced titled The Star, The Cross, and The Crescent: The Roots of Islam, Stanley reveals why one should never attend an event where he is scheduled to speak. In the Islam installment to his series, Stanley examined Mohamed and the rise of Islam, and in doing so he employed the Historical Context method of interpreting characters and events. For those not familiar with the method; is a mainstay tool in the secular toolbox calibrated to exonerate villains.
In the preamble to Stanley’s presentation he declared his intention to tread the middle ground on Islam, not to be extreme in any direction, and of course that ruled out the condemnation of heinous acts. He proceeded to treat with great respect a murdering blasphemer who robbed, killed, and destroyed to enrich himself and his followers. He also took pains to emphasize that the brutality of his criminal record must be assessed in the historical context of the time period, and in light of the fact that murder, robbery, and rape were common to the area.
Aside from the fact that this absurd justification could easily be used to excuse all the criminals in every major American city today, there are two points that must be made here.
Firstly, this process of essaying a topic by straddling the middle ground and restraining one’s self from concluding strongly is an academic constraint placed upon students who have yet to demonstrate mastery in a subject area. Pastors, on the other hand, are not to be sophomoric, and are to speak with authority.
Secondly, when turned from studying ancient languages and focused on past behaviors, the Historical Context evaluation needs to be discredited for what it is. We’re not going to work hard in this session, but to do this we need to take just a closer look at this method of evaluation, and its outcropping assessment model.
Evaluation by Historical Context Method
Certainly, the societal infrastructure and environmental circumstances which exist play large roles in either influencing or else limiting the actions of its members. But there are glaring deficiencies in applying this method as the end-all for analysis, and it was Stanley’s pitfall for doing so. The secular Historical Context interpretation Stanley embraces seeks to both explain and excuse the absence of moral responsibility. It does this by eliminating the existence of moral laws altogether and replacing them with whatever code of conduct was in practice. Then, those codices become the standards by which individuals and actions are to be assessed, but not judged. That is, after all, it’s purpose: eliminating judgment.
By this Historical Context standard no judgment is rendered as there are no universal and fixed standards, or laws, that can be appealed to or considered. That is exactly the purpose of emphasizing it, and explains the popularity of the method today.
It is politically expedient in eliminating differences and in extending hands across chasms that separate irreconcilable philosophies and deeds. In governing, it blurs the dichotomies and excuses the dictators. As diplomacy, it recognizes tyrants as legitimate parties capable of entering into binding contracts. Its use by our statesmen partially explains America’s declining power and economy.
In Christendom, this reduction of critical thought and analysis to a mere observe-and-report recitation, with a context modifier that sees no evil, is perfectly in line with the visible church’s cry for non-judgmentalism. A cry, by the way, that was hoisted upon it by the outside world, and one to which many churches succumbed hoping to gain acceptance. Its employment by pastors partially explains the ushering in of the Apostasy.
Cultural Equivalency Assessment
Another main function of the Historical Context method we need to understand is that it is used to promote the cultural equivalency model of assessment. Here’s the assessment: if a society can be identified by certain systemic behaviors which are reprehensible to a more civilized society, they cannot be criticized. There is to be no discrimination, or selectivity, in preferring one quality over another that exhibits a want of refinement and is the result of violent passions unbridled. Such reasonable discrimination would imply one culture is better than another. Again, that would be in violation of the non-judgmentalism clause.
The big selling point to this equal sign is that everyone gets to breathe a big sigh of relief. It’s all relative: if that is what they do, then it’s alright for them. One culture is not better than the other; they’re just different. Then comes the payoff: this is what I do, and it’s alright for me. I can’t be criticized. This is the mechanism which passes sin into the category of acceptableness which resides above in a collective consciousness at large. Any behavior can be reevaluated to merge into this universal acceptableness so long as one standard is observed; that no standard be invoked to assess anyone negatively (unless, of course, you object to this standard). This new standard, then, replaces righteousness as a standard.
This is how the philosophy of Coexist is worked out, and the mental gymnastics used to entertain it. With it, an economy is created with a generous rate of exchange that cleanses another’s sins in order to continue practice one’s own sins, and not be required to call them sins anymore. No sin, no judgment. To everyone’s delight, righteousness and judgment are vanquished.
It’s success is staggering. Everywhere we look in America sin is on parade in flesh that is mutilated and disfigured in ways one could see only on the covers of National Geographic magazine a few decades ago. It’s my guess that the only reason the use of neck stretching rings, added incrementally to lengthen the neck over time, hasn’t taken hold yet is due to our use of automobiles.
Assessing Andy Stanley
Stanly ended the Islam segment (I told you I wouldn’t drag you through it) by imploring his audience to remain critically suspended on the subject of Islam; even when confronted with the irrefutable barbarity resulting from its adherents taking it seriously. “Before you rush to judgment,” Stanley cautioned his listeners,1 and before applying the secular gold standard of Historical Context for interpreting behavior, he made sure they understood the process. He chose as his exercise for fostering nonjudgmental coexistence to mitigate the actions of the 911 murderers who flew planes into buildings killing three thousand innocent non-combatants. He put that in historical context by asking his audience to remember what took place in Christendom known as the Crusades. Really.
This equivocation of the Roman Catholic Church to Christianity, and therefore to Christians, is a tactic infamous on university compasses where professors use it to rant against God, Christianity, and Christian students. It is reprehensible for a supposed ‘pastor’ to employ this tactic in a building called a Christian church, but it is the only destination for a conclusion arrived at with this particular method of secular evaluation. Those who depend on it for discernment grow to know no bounds for equivocation, and often misrepresent history to use it as a cleanser.
It is obvious by the words and actions of the Popes and their followers that they themselves were not following Christian doctrine, that they tortured and murdered Christians who refused to worship the Pope as Christ, and did all their atrocities in direct contradiction of scripture. The Muslims jihadists carry out their terror campaigns at the explicit direction of their writings.
Nevertheless, in his closing remarks Stanley, a monotone and malaise speaker until now, displayed a gesticulating and emotional delivery chronicling some of the details of the Crusades to intimidate his listeners from rightly adjudicating Islam by telling them “that’s what we were up to.”2 He went on to call Spain a Christian nation when it launched the Spanish Inquisition, and implied that any Christians in his audience were guilty of its crimes as religious descendants of those impostures who committed their crimes under the Christian label.
Firing Andy Stanley
What should be obvious to Stanley if he spent any time at all studying the Bible, the Crusades, and the Jewish Diaspora from Spain in 1492 is that those campaigns could not have been conducted by Christians. Firstly, they were convenient vehicles for purging accused heretics from Europe who were Christians that recognized the Pope was an antichrist, and the luxurious Roman seat was one of idolatry and blasphemy.
The Crusades continued to roll over hill and over dale in an effort to conquer Jewish holy lands, adding Jerusalem to the ‘Christian’ real estate portfolio, in order to substantiate the Roman Catholic Church’s claim that the church supplanted Israel, and all future promises and blessings pertaining to them were transferred to the church. As such, they alternately became a genocidal campaign of forced conversion to Catholicism, or dispossession of wealth and banishment. These campaigns were conducted by a false political church which had instituted a false Babylonian priesthood to replace the Levitacal priesthood; which priesthood Christ abolished when He became our high priest (Heb 7). That false priesthood was, and still is, an instrument used to gain wealth, and to retain power over people and nations. The continued existence of Jewish religious communities was a persistent and irritating reminder that both the church’s claims regarding the Jews were false.
Thus, Rome’s persecution of Christians and their hatred towards the Jews steamed from a desire to justify the church’s power and opulent lifestyle, and to eradicate living references to the priesthood they stole and were imitating. But their anti-Semitism was also fueled from the influence of Satan’s particular hatred for the Jews:
Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises; Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. (Rom 9:4-5)
And those reasons are not enough to explain his attempts to eliminate them from the earth and to make the world think that God is done with them. The Jews also figure centrally in Satan’s final demise when God brings them back to their own land and restores them to Himself (Joe 3; Jer 30, 31; Zec 12, 13; Rev 19, 20). There were other prongs in the Crusades, but these are the pertinent ones which rebuke Stanley’s associating them with Christian activities in order to elevate Islam and give Mohamed a pass.
Anyone like Stanley who so closely aligns himself with such obvious satanic attempts at imitating the Christian church to destroy Christians and Jews in order to make palatable another satanic religious organization whose goal is to destroy Christians and Jews is highly suspect of being an operative for both of them. One thing that can certainly be said about Stanley is that he hasn’t one wit of discernment or other qualification for addressing Christians.
Adding Injury to Insult
More importantly, anyone in the sound of his voice that cannot extricate themselves to sound teaching is going to be harmed. The Bible does not seek middle ground, and is stark in its condemnation of sin. We learn in it that whether a people has the law, or does not have the law, the moment they decide one thing is wrong or one thing is right is the moment they become a law unto themselves; observing the law by nature, and conscious of the fact that they also do wrong. It means they are held responsible to know that they themselves should be judged (Rom 2:3).
The Bible puts it this way:
Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things. (Rom 2:1)
Stanley’s Islam presentation was contrary to the Bible. He sought to excuse a person and persons that God said are inexcusable.
Those still reading their Bibles and at the same time attending Stanley’s church are going experience some degree of cognitive dissonance. When their behavior, of supporting Stanley, does not align with what they know from the word of truth; they are more likely to change what they believe to solve the conflict. And that’s just some of the harm from false teachers; there is much more, and Stanley knows it. It’s anticipated, and powerful control modules have been put in place to manage the harm in order to manage the people. In our next session, we’ll look at the real power behind the throne at North Point Community Church. How do we find it? We look at where they send the really hurt and injured.
1 – 2. Andy Stanley, The Star, The Cross, and The Crescent: The Roots of Islam, 2006. Video. North Point Community Chruch, September 24, 2006. http://www.northpoint.org/messages (accessed December 19, 2010).