As I told you in the post Snakes in your Brain - not knowing the truth can destroy you. Listen to the following clip of an alleged pastor in Michigan, Rob Bell. In his desire to fill his church with the fluffy bun theory (see my post Where's the Beef?) this alleged pastor is touting a theory that no one should worry about Hell. I think it's cool that a liberal news station MSNBC still employs a Christian with enough guts to take this guy on. Listen carefully to his answers. This guy is like a small child in a candy store. He doesn't want to make sense....he just wants it all.
Listening to this video was painful. I actually felt bad for Rob. It must be exhausting trying to walk the fence, being sure not to tip to far to either side. I thought about a wonderful verse in Revelation 3:15-16. We should be in Revelation - right??? After all, we are talking about Heaven and Hell.
Revelation 3:15-16 "I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm--neither hot nor cold--I am about to spit you out of my mouth."
Wow...that verse should make you feel warm and fuzzy. Don't take bets on where you'll be "spit" to. Don't mess with me! I can pull hundreds of scriptures out that insist that there will be thousands...millions of people that will inhabit Hell. And...if you take those scriptures out of the Bible, you are left with a namby pamby powerless nothing of a gospel. Take those scriptures out and you will gut the very strength of the gospel. Am I saying that Hell, mean spirited torture or demands by God are the only things that matter? Absolutely not! But they are part of the mix that keeps us focused on the message. Knowing the consequences of your actions will keep you striving for the good. Knowing the penalty of wrong doing is what keeps you moving forward. Knowing that this is wrong and that isn't will help you to focus on the greater good.
NEVER FORGET THAT THERE ARE ABSOLUTES TO THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST. Absolutes sent him to the cross and absolutes will either send you to Heaven or to Hell.
Humans are cunning. We know how to negotiate our way into getting what we want. It's only when we understand consequences and that those consequences will be upheld that we actually turn our head enough so we can see the value of goodness.
Rob Bell is dangerously close to saying that we are little Gods. I clicked on several of his you tube showings and in one he was boasting about the story of Peter walking on the water. In this rant he is excited because he doesn't feel that Peter starting sinking because of a lack of faith in Jesus....Rob feels he started sinking because he didn't believe in Peter. Rob goes on to say..."Wow...that's what we need to do more of. We need to understand that it's not all about Jesus - we just have to believe in ourselves."
As I was listening to that I wondered....Did he fall asleep in Seminary? Was he present during Sunday School? What happened to this guy that he could twist the scriptures so badly?
There are three things I want to point out to you.
1. You better make sure your pastor and your Biblical training is based on the truth. Your soul and eternity depends on it. I'm sorry to tell you that you can't stand before God and point your finger at your pastor and scream, "You can't send me to Hell. I didn't know any better. IT'S HIS FAULT!" Sorry darling....that won't work.
Philippians 2: 12-13 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed--not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence--continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.
Your salvation is up to you dear.
2. Make sure your pastor isn't basing his theology on his own journey. When Rob Bell said that some of this was based on his own journey....I knew then that he was not sharing the gospel of Christ. NONE of the teachings of faith should be based on your journey. YOU are not the savior! Base your faith on the gospel of Christ only.
3. Make sure your pastor or teacher isn't looking for fame, money or has grandiose desires. Any of those will naturally take him down the wrong road. As I've said before, anytime a church is more worried about the pews being filled than about taking care of the individual saint - they are in trouble. The main function of the church is to guide saints in their walk with Christ. If you have 1,500 members but they are more interested in singing fun songs and going to cool parties than going to a Bible Study....you have a problem. If your church has 1,500 members but Christ comes tomorrow and only 5 people make it - what good is that??? I actually heard a quote from Rick Warren where he said, "Don't do Bible Studies. People already know more Bible than they can practice in their lives." WHAT??? Maybe he needs to study his Bible a lot more.
I hope that all of you will hold your pastors accountable. Make sure that your #1 mission is not to fill the pews but rather to disciple strong men and women for Christ!
God loves you,