The other Iconoclast

In my last blog, Iconoclast, I wrote about how a pastor with a D.Th., attacked Martin Luther when he himself was at the wrong. The problem with preachers today is being in extreme ends. This is about another preacher I had in a church I attended sometime back in USA.

I really liked the pastor and when he left the church, in his position, another preacher took over the sermons. I mention ‘preacher’, because he was never called ‘a pastor’ by the church team and he was always called by his name. But another pastor took over the church, who took care of the worship service.

For the first service, I was very excited as the pastor who left, was one of the wonderful preachers I have ever had and he had some very nice words about this preacher who was taking over from him.

So, the sermon starts and he talked about his coffee drinking habit for the 7 long minutes. (I know that he spoke exactly for 7 minutes, because when I told him he wasted like 15 minutes talking about coffee, he went back and listened to the sermon and got back to me, saying that in 30 minutes given to him, he used only 7 minutes exactly for coffee… so, I know.)

I had a face-off with him about wasting 7 minutes just on coffee and his explanation was that since he was officially taking over the sermons, he wanted to make a connection with people so that they can trust him. But he was in the church for a long time and almost everyone knew him personally. I had problems with that argument, but I will skip to something else he spoke about in the sermon.

His sermon was on Acts 15, the council of Jerusalem. My problem came with the verse 28.

For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things… – Acts 15:28 (KJ2000) (The strikethrough is mine to emphasize what he said in his sermon.)

He talked about how we don’t need to go to the Spirit of God for making spiritual decisions, because even the Apostles did not go to the Holy Spirit. They talked among themselves, made a decision that seemed okay with all of them and announced that to the council. So, it is okay for us to make spiritual decisions by talking with others, no need to bother the Spirit of God for decisions, whether big or small. When the apostles did not bother the Spirit of God, why do we have to bother Him all the time? This was the gist of his message.

I was very upset and later pointed out to him in an email that the original verse has the Holy Spirit first, which implies that they came upon the decision under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

His reply was: that may be true, but he was focusing on how the apostles found good something, but that necessarily does not mean it was correct all the time. He said that even the Spirit of God was wrong in His guidance at that time.

I had to read his email few times to make sure I got it right. This preacher, a supposedly Christian preacher was saying that the Spirit of God was actually wrong in His guidance. I don’t want to go into why he said that, but I pointed out how his argument was wrong and that the Spirit of God was, is and will always be right.

Now, when I explained that, he accepted that he used wrong words, but hey, what is the big deal, even Jesus Christ was wrong in His usage of words. Yes, he said that. To explain that, he showed me the parable of unjust judge from Luke 18. And he said that Jesus said that God our Father is the unjust judge. Even today, when I think about it, it bothers me so much. I just told him just because he is wrong, he does not have to project our LORD Jesus Christ in the wrong light. I told the chief pastor that I would not be attending their church thereafter and withdrew.

Only later, I came to know that there is a new breed of iconoclasts today in the churches, who are trying their best to ‘humanize’ the Word of God. Oh, the Scriptures are not infallible, the miracles can be explained by human understanding, the guidance of the Spirit of God changes according to our culture and so on.

No dear friend, certain things do not change. I don’t mind when non-believers say all these things. But I have problem when believers and, especially, preachers start to say such things.

  • The Word of God is infallible. If something is wrong, that means the human understanding of the Word of God is amiss.
  • The miracles can never be explained using human understanding. That is why they are called miracles.
  • And, no, the Spirit of God does not change with our culture and customs. We can interpret His works in anyway we want, but He does not change.

As the Bible says, nowadays, priests are being made from all sorts of people. (1 King 12:31) But let us not forget one warning.

Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, knowing that we shall receive greater judgment. – James 3:1 

James3-1&2

Proverbs 15:23“A person finds joy in giving an apt reply— and how good is a timely word!”

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Posted on October 22, 2013, in Christian Life, Daily Manna, Strong Tower and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Pats .. this is so awesome, the way you write your thoughts, couple of decades ago read Billy Graham my answer, I feel like reading similar thoughts..
    God Bless.. dont forget me in your prayers
    \Paul

    • Hi Paul, thank you very much for your comments. It is the grace of the LORD and may His Name be praised always.

      Of course, you are always in my mind and prayers. And, wish you a very happy birthday, buddy.

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