"Heresy"... just the cults?

'Heresy' is defined in the Oxford dictionary as...

A 'Heretic' is defined in the Oxford dictionary as...

'Heresy' is probably better checked within what the Bible says if we are to look at heresies in the church today. I first looked in H H Halley's Bible Handbook which I obtained along with a Cruden's Concordance when I first became a Christian in 1987. I drew a blank, the word is not indexed there. Surprisingly, it is not mentioned in Merrill Unger's 'Hodder Bible Handbook', either.

So I turned to another, this time from Word Books. This was 'The Word Illustrated Bible Handbook', where there are five references, to Colossians, to James, to 1st John, to 2nd Thessalonians, and to the pastoral epistles. There is also a cross-reference to Gnosticism.

Finally, I looked in Strong's Concordance to see what he had to say, and found references to 1st Corinthians, Galatians, and 2nd Peter. This is what I found in Galatians...

And this is what I found in 2nd Peter...

There is much written about changing the gospel message to that of 'another gospel', and this study note addresses a very serious widespread series of these, which has insidiously crept into almost the whole church in one way or another since World War Two.

So, there we have the situation at the close of the first century AD. What about now, you may ask, 2000 years later... what about Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses, and other such groups? Sure, they do preach a considerable amount of heretical stuff. However, they are well known for their heresies, as are other such groups, of which there are many.

No, this study is about heresies which are rampant in what people would regard as 'Mainstream Christianity'. This is despite many many folk who have tried and failed at calling the perpetrators to repentance. It just gets bigger and bigger and bigger. You know, that is actually prophesied as what will happen in the end-times, when Christ's return is imminent.

No, I am not being a prophet of doom. I just happen to believe that the Bible tells us truth, and that it is not just a collection of allegorical myths, but is a roadmap for my (and your) salvation, should we head in the right direction. I also believe, as do a surprising number of others, that we are indeed in the final decades of this dispensation of time.

If for no other reason, just take a confirming look at the way in which the world upon which we live is literally coming to the end of its ecological and environmental tether with far too little in preventive maintenance being done by the governments that have the ability to fix it.

Then, add to that the prophetic messages from scripture, and it makes tremendous sense to understand what the end-times are about.

Here is the first of several intended notes about modern heresies which I believe are rampant throughout the church. Others will follow. Some will be in my own words, some (like the one below) will be a sort of "Readers' Digest" selected excerpts version of the original published article.

Quite recently I found in a magazine the first part of a two-part series entitled 'Fraud and Deceit in the presentation of the Gospel', written by a qualified lawyer who had turned pastor. I would like to quote a few paragraphs from the start of this man's very well written series, but before I do, here is a brief synopsis of his life...

Here are his opening paragraphs from the article, with slight editing by me, purely to fit this page... firstly the background to his hard-hitting article...

A few key paragraphs are shown here, to whet your appetite...

You may read the article in its entirety in the 'Vanguard' magazine, Issue 7 (February 2000), and we quote these 'teasers' under the fair dealing section of the Australian copyright acts, acknowledging the source and the author. 'Vanguard' is published simultaneously in both Australia and the United Kingdom... website at www.christian-witness.org

Interestingly, when I first came to be a Christian in 1987, there was a worship song composed to the 'You are are not your own' scripture, sung frequently. I haven't heard it for many years, so far have those churches which previously sang it drifted from biblical belief.

In fact, I believe the converse is true, converts to Christianity seem to be encouraged these days to keep their baby faith (not building on it as the apostles taught) and then unbelievably instructed to go and do their own individual thing. This is diametrically opposed to the concept of being not our own, but bought at a price by the Lord Jesus Christ to obey His every requirement.

You may also like to listen to a musical rendering of the 'awl through the ear' concept, composed by a member of the congregation of a church which I used to attend. You can find the song by going to the top frame of this site and following the link for 'Speak, Lord (for Thy servant heareth)'

I have started to write a few notes about some of the problems associated with the 1948 "Latter Rain" Revival in Saskatchewan and associated things like the Toronto/Pensecola experience. Please take this link which will open in a seperate window.

You may take a link here to read about a series of books authored by another Christian, raised in a Pentecostal church, and who as a pastor discovered many errors being taught by his denomination. Please go and read about these book written by Bill Randles.

Walter Martin, who founded Christian Research Institute, and who was a shining light in exposing many cultish teachings promoted by groups claiming to be Christians, went to be with the Lord several years ago. He is succeeded by Hank Hanegraaff, an evangelical brother who I understand does not accept the gifts as evidenced on the Day of Pentecost as being valid in these days. Be that as it may, he has written a fascinating book called Christianity in Crisis. While the link has not yet been completed, there is an excerpt (hopefully to be completed in a few days) which is published here under the fair dealing section of Australian Copyright law. I believe if you doubt the existence of heresy in the teachings of many modern-day "prophets" that this page will convince you otherwise.

Heresies aren't limited to the "cult" churches and those which are often described as "alive" ones. The good old Church Of England/ Anglican/ Episcopalian denomination has two quite well-known clergy amongst their leadership... Bill Randles refers to one, the curate at the London church from where sprang the "Alpha" courses what are promoted by many churches these days as solid bibly study courses leading to a personal commitment to Christ.

It is worth having a look at what has been left out in these courses to judge for yourself whether the challenge to commitment is to the full gospel or just a tiny bit of it.

It is also worth having a look at what this new wave of the Holy Spirit is; you at least owe it to yourself to know whether or not I'm being critical of my brothers for no reason. This pages shows, amongst other things, the background of the people who wrote the Alpha course.

Also worth looking at is a pair of newspaper reports written for the Melbourne daily newspaper called The Age several years ago about visiting US Bishop Spong who was here not to preach the gospel but to sell the book he wrote!

You may take a link here to an introductory page which leads to the two extremely well written articles published about Brother Spong.

Thank you for visiting. This heresy section will be expanded as and when the time permits.

updated 22nd October 2006