Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Is the Ecumenical Movement Promoting ‘NEW DAYS – NEW WAYS’?

Is the Ecumenical Movement Promoting

“They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. 'Peace, peace,' they say, when there is no peace” (Jeremiah 6:14 NIV)

Welcome to today’s Truth for the Journey! Today we will cover an interesting topic, especially considering current events, involving such figure heads as the Pope and the Catholic Church. Throughout this article as you will see I have mentioned the Catholic Church numerous times, but within a specific context. However from the outset let me clarify that currently my wife and I are living in Tuscany Italy (even though we have offices in other parts of the world) and I have preached more than once in Catholic churches here, whom I have always found to be “open” if not “more-open-and-hungry” for the things of God than other churches I experience!

For instance, there have been the occasions that I have gone up to preach for Padre Don Stefano, who lives on top of a mountain here in Tuscany – and have enjoyed some spectacular events with him (a mountain that takes roughly 2 and half hours to ascend - even with a car!) The precise reason that he was placed there was due to his sincere belief in the things of the Holy Spirit. Something that his piers in the Catholic Church did not collectively appreciate some decades before and decidedly “put-him-out-to-graze” in order to minimize the influence of his beliefs on others! In other words he was effectively “ostracized” by his own church in an attempt to quench the Holy Spirit’s fire!

However as it says in John 12:32, if Jesus is lifted up, all men will be drawn to Him. Therefore we know and have confidence that the Holy Spirit will always find a way to draw people unto Christ. Despite all their efforts, those in the hierarchy in the Catholic Church were unable to hinder the moving of the Holy Spirit for long, as Padre Don Stefano regularly attracts hundreds upon hundreds to his meetings on the mountain top. Many came via the coach load (totally disregarding the difficulty of logistics!) especially for such calendar events as “Pentecost.” Where typically Don Stefano would invite known “Pentecostals” to come and preach for him on those specific occasions – which is where I came in of course! So as you can tell, I have always and will always preach where the doors are open and where I feel the leading of God’s Spirit, whom over the years I have discovered, will transcend any humanistic boundary and anoint me to preach right across the board; with strong love without ever compromising the scriptures.

So having said all this – by way of small disclaimer - nothing changes the fact that there are obvious discrepancies within the doctrine of the Catholic Church! Yet with nothing posing too great of a challenge or a threat for the Holy Spirit – keeping this in mind - let us read on, from this excerpt taken from my own book material on the End Times - entitled, “Israel, The Church And The End Times.” See also my BLOG: http://churchandtheendtimes.blogspot.com/

It was interesting that several years ago, Archbishop Runcie who was the head of the Church of England, told “Time Magazine” that he had given a ring to Pope John Paul 11 as “an engagement ring” in view of the coming marriage between the Roman Catholic Church and the Church of England. Remember the Church of Rome has not renounced any of the fundamental doctrinal errors that provoked the Protestant Reformation in AD 1520. The non-Catholic members of the union are making this Ecumenical union on the basis of theological compromise.

Even Catholic theologians admit that John Paul 11 was the most traditional Pope of this last century and the strongest advocate of worship of Mary, Queen of Heaven, Mother of God, as the “co-redenitrix” along with Jesus Christ. However a process of intense ecumenical dialogue has proceeded quietly during the last twenty years or so! The Church leaders are very close to healing the schism between the Greek and Russian Orthodox Churches and the Church of Rome. The Pope has met with Buddhist, Muslim, and Jewish religious leaders from around the world. For the first time in history the Vatican has sought to establish ties with those other churches. He has engaged in ecumenical religious rituals and services with other religions that would have been unimaginable for any previous Pope.

The danger today is that in opting for a man-made unity based on compromise; and abandoning the Protestant Reformation and the truths of the Scriptures that were sealed in the blood of Martyrs, we are heading back to whence we came. Michael de Semlyen says, today in Britain, there is a “love Gospel” about, which confines its self exclusively to what is called “the positive.” It is claimed that as long as Jesus Christ is proclaimed as Saviour and Lord, we are all as one in Him. Differences over doctrine must not be allowed to get in the way of this, they say; ‘we can affirm truth, but not confront error!’

Even Evangelical Alliance, UK Director (at the time), Clive Calver said: “More barriers need to come down if a true alliance of evangelicals in the UK is to emerge. There are thousands more with whom we wish to stand shoulder to shoulder.” Is this part of the New World Order? It must be said that those who are pointing the finger and accusing many whom are standing for truth, as ‘SECTS’, are very often part of the so-called unity at any cost; which is part of the Babylonian church!

A.W.Tozer said that, “Every century needs its prophetic voices. Those men who have been gifted by God with an incisive cutting edge to expose hypocrisy, denounce compromise, and call for holiness.”

He said, “If THE CHURCH in the second half of this century is to recover from the injuries which she suffered in the first half, there must appear a new type of preacher. The proper ruler of the synagogue type will never do. Neither will the priestly type of man who carries out his duties, takes his pay and asks no questions, nor the smooth talking pastoral type who knows how to make the Christian religion acceptable to everyone. All these have been tried and found wanting. Another kind of religious leader must arise among us. He must be of the old prophet type, a man who has seen visions of God and has heard a voice from the throne.

The Protestant Martyrs, godly and loving men, ‘could have taken this same position of, peace at any cost, within the wider Church of their day. They could have confined themselves to avoiding all controversy and to agreeing with their persecutors about many of the ‘positives’. But, the Scripture commanded them to ‘exhort and convince by sound doctrine’ and to ‘flee from idolatry’. They obeyed; they saw the error and the idolatry, and as responsible leaders, as pastors trusted to guide their flocks into green pastures, they exposed and opposed it all roundly. They could so easily have chosen to look the other way and concentrate on the many truths of the Christian faith, which was common ground. They could have elected to please men, rather than please God.”

The Reformers saw the whole Catholic system as anti-Christian. Luther and Calvin went so far as to identify the Papacy with the Antichrist and they like Wycliffe, Tyndale, Matthew Henry, Spurgeon, Lloyd-Jones and many others saw the Roman Catholic Institution as Mystery Babylon, the Mother of Harlots, vividly described in Revelation 17. The Spirit-Filled life is filled with testimony of experience which of course is not wrong in its self, but “New Days, New Ways” is a dangerous way of Life!

“I well knew how many smooth arguments can be marshalled in support of the new cross,” says A.W.Tozer. Does not the new cross win converts and make many followers and so carry the advantage of numerical success? Should we not adjust ourselves to the changing times? Have we not heard the slogan, “New days, New ways?” And who but someone very old and very conservative would insist upon death as the appointed way to life? And who today is interested in a gloomy mysticism that would sentence its flesh to a cross and recommend self-effacing humility as a virtue actually to be practised by modern Christians?

These are the arguments along with many more flippant still, which are brought forward to give an appearance of wisdom to the hollow and meaningless cross of popular Christianity.

He says (Tozer) “Doubtless there are many whose eyes are open to the tragedy of our times, but why are they so silent when their testimony is so sorely needed. In the name of Christ men have made void the cross of Christ. ‘The noise of them that sing do I hear’. Men have fashioned a golden cross with a graving tool, and before it they sit down to eat and drink and rise up to play. In their blindness they have substituted the work of their own hands for the working of God’s power. Perhaps our greatest present need may be the coming of a prophet to dash the stones at the foot of the mountain and call the Church out to repentance or to judgement....

Before all who wish to follow Christ the way lies clear. It is the way of death unto life. Always life stands just beyond death and beckons the man who is sick of himself to come and know the life more abundant. But to reach the new life he must pass through the valley of the shadow of death, and I know that at the sound of those words many will turn back and follow Christ no more. But to whom shall we go? ‘Thou hast the words of eternal life.’”

To close, let us be mindful of all that has been brought out in this article here, and resist becoming part of a false ‘Doctrine’, whether Catholic, Anglican, Protestant or Pentecostal that cries “peace” when there is no peace! (Jer. 6:14) For those of us who entered into the life of Christ, we chose to be identified as such; an identity that we cannot afford to compromise. In fact we live in a day where the distinctions are becoming more and more acute – in the context that the dark is getting darker and the brightness is getting brighter! In other words the dividing lines, although fudged for many are still strong. We must make our daily choices wisely and never lean back into deception.

Let us therefore not be fearful of hearing the voice of God’s prophets. Satan has undermined the authority of the “prophet” in every generation, including this one - simply because they threaten him the most! Remember that God Himself singles them out when He declares, “Come not against Mine anointed ones, and against My prophets do not evil” (1 Chron 16:22 YLT). They will always be “singled-out” so we must not be timid about them. Instead let us become a generation that develops “ears to hear” the voice of His prophets – resisting our human instinct that “despises” this gift. They may not be as “smooth-talking” as the other gifts (even much less articulate perhaps) especially to the humanistic crowd; but oh how we need this potent gift in the Body of Christ today! Amen.

Father I want to promote the one and only, true cross of Christ. Help me not fall into the trap of humanism which cleverly marshals smooth arguments in support of a “new cross.” Help me Father to live a life worthy of Christ and His Spirit, because without Him I know that I am nothing. Help me not to soak up or side with the “political correctness” of this generation, which has all but “invaded” Your Church. Help me “fail” to compromise when forced to choose between that and Your Word! Help me make the right choices in everything - “Christ and Christ alone” - whether in word or in deed. Amen.

You are Life. You are my Source and Supply. You are Truth. Nothing that is said “outside” of You can be considered truth at all. You are my Rock and my Deliverer; my Redeemer. I AM REDEEMED. I think as one redeemed. I live as one redeemed. I communicate with the world around me as one who has been redeemed. I don’t hide my redemption. I uphold neither a “false cross” nor a mixture of “humanistic arguments” but truth itself - Jesus Christ - who will draw all men unto Himself. I am not given to humanistic arguments, logic or reason – outside of Your Word. You are light. You are the Way. I follow You with my understanding, I follow with my heart. I follow with my whole spirit, soul and body. You alone are worthy. Hallelujah!


Motto: ‘God Chooses, then the Spirit Tests, but You Must Respond!’

Copyright 2010 © Alan Pateman Ministries


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