Showing posts from 2014

Christian, Stop Sharing John Pavlovitz's Articles

Before this month, I'd never heard of John Pavlovitz. Suddenly I started seeing his editorials popping up on Facebook and Twitter. They were being posted by Christians, but the substance of the articles appeared quite off. As a pastor committed to sound doctrine and also rebuking those who contradict it (Titus 1:9), I wanted to know who this guy was. So I looked him up.

It took me about 30-seconds of scrolling through his blog before coming to the conclusion that he is not to be considered any kind of biblical authority. He claims to be a pastor. His Facebook page says that he's a "rogue pastor," formerly of a Methodist church in North Carolina. But he is no friend of the church.

The following are three of his articles that have been published through external sources. I'd like to point out some of the problems with the stuff he writes so that you, Christian, can understand why his articles should not be shared.

5 Things I Wish Christians Would Admit About the Bib…

Exodus: Gods and Kings -- A Pastor's Review

Our local theater recently did a huge remodel. Last night was the first time I've had the chance to go see a movie in the new digs, and they are really something. It's like a brand new building -- new carpet, new lighting, new sound. Even the outside of the building is totally different.

And let me tell you about the seats. Recliners. I'm talking full-on leather La-Z-Boys with cup-holders and an electronic recline feature. Okay, they're not actually La-Z-Boys as in the brand, but they might as well have been. As far as a theater experience goes, it's the most comfortable I've ever been.

I sat in a single seat. They also have recliner couches. You can lift the arm-rest and stretch out if you want to. I'd love to go back and take my wife with me so we can cuddle up and watch a movie together. The B&B Gem in Junction City has become a really great theater.

And that's the most positive I'm going to be with this review because the film I went to go s…

VeggieTales In the House Review

I saw my first VeggieTales episode when I was a freshman in high school, and I was instantly hooked. By that time there were already several videos (really -- they were VHS tapes). Me and some church friends loved them so much, even as teenagers, we put together VeggieTales parties. We even had unsaved friends that came and could sing the songs with the rest of us.

I remember falling on the floor in fits of laughter with my siblings when we first heard Song of the Cebu. Then we watched it over and over until we had it completely memorized. I can still quote almost entire episodes, including one of my favorites, Tale of Two Cities, based on the parable of the Good Samaritan. I was a VeggieTales kid when I was too old to be called a kid.

Though the Bible-based program has steadily diminished over the past decade (creator Phil Vischer lost the company in 2003), I was willing to give the new Netflix-exclusive series a taste. That series, called VeggieTales In the House, is fresh in terms …

Responding Again to the Documentary, "Holy Ghost"

It was brought to my attention recently that filmmaker Darren Wilson, who created a blasphemous documentary entitled Holy Ghost,wrote a blog that seems to respond to the critical review I wrote of the film. Whether or not he had my review in mind, many others have made some of the same accusations that I first made, pointing out the film falls far short of presenting the truth of the Holy Spirit. It is false teaching.

Rather than listen to sage counsel, Wilson tries to explain himself be responding to three of the most common questions (criticisms?) about the movie. I present those questions below as well as my own response, once again warning everyone reading to stay away from this wretched documentary. If you haven't yet, please read my review by clicking here. Wilson's comments from his blog are indented in italics, and my response follows...

1. Why is the Gospel not presented in the film?
I find this one interesting, as it seems to me that a large portion of the Korn concert…

A Review of the Wanderlust Film "The Holy Ghost"

Acts 2 begins with the day of Pentecost. The apostles receive the Holy Spirit and are able to speak in whatever languages were necessary for communicating the gospel in Jerusalem. "Men from every nation under heaven," as it says in the text, understood the message in their own language. Some of the Jews thought the apostles were drunk. But Peter stood before them and delivered the good news of salvation.

He shared prophesy from the Old Testament concerning Jesus Christ, the Son of God put to death by lawless men, and rose again from the grave. This was preordained by God, but that did not absolve the guilty of their sin. Peter's hearers were "cut to the heart" and asked the apostles, "Brothers, what shall we do?" To which Peter replied, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."

I wish I could say that filmmaker Darren Wilson and …

It Pleased God to Crush Him

Recently I was witnessing in a park. There's a question I get asked that comes up every once in a while, and I heard it again: Why does God allow all kinds of false religions in the world to fool people away from believing in Jesus?

There are some solid, biblical answers to that question. First of all, false teaching is a judgment. We often don't think about it that way, but the Joel Osteens, the Joyce Meyers, and the Rob Bells of the world are a judgment of God. They are heading up false religions as much as any other kind of pagan worship.

In 2 Timothy 4:3, we read, "For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions." We know from Romans 1:26 that God will give up a rebellious people in judgment to be consumed by their passions.

A person gets "fooled" into following a false religion not because the false truth was more convincing to them than t…

Obvious Child

A couple weeks ago, Beki and I had a night to ourselves, so we decided as part of our evening we would go out and see a movie. It was just a PG film, supposed to be family-friendly entertainment. We could have taken the kids. But as early as the previews, we were glad that we didn't. What was supposed to be a mild Disney film started with a joke about abortion.

One of the trailers was for an upcoming film called Obvious Child. A better name for it would have been "Oblivious Child." It's the fictional story of a comedienne who had a one-night stand, got pregnant, and decided to get an abortion. This is all in the two-minute movie preview, complete with the character getting drunk and taking her clothes off. Preceding a PG-rated movie!

Two of the critical praises for Obvious Child went like this: "Hilarious, heartbreaking, and totally genius." I don't know whether to laugh or cry, but I guess that's the point. "The most winning abortion-themed ro…

A Message For Our Graduates (2014)

This is a message shared with our 2014 graduates at our church this past Sunday, May 18. The full video of the sermon can be found here. Links to various videos and scriptures are made throughout the transcript.
Since my senior year of high school, I’ve spoken at baccalaureate services. My first baccalaureate was my own, and then I was the keynote speaker at a Christian high school baccalaureate my freshman year of college. However, I’ve come to terms with accepting that I may never be asked to speak at a high school graduation – at least not at a public school. I am a pastor, after all. I use words like propitiation, sanctification, and abomination. I use offensive phrases like “the wrath of God” and “the cross of Christ.” So a public high school graduation speech may not ever be in my future.
I’ve always wanted to speak at one. In fact, I’ve had dreams of doing a high school graduation. My youngest sibling, Anna, is 13 years younger than I am. I had fanciful expectations of becoming…