Friday, March 23, 2007

TONY JONES VS. DR. JOHN MACARTHUR

From Apprising.org:

Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. (Matthew 7:15-20, KJV)

Tony Jones:

"Emergent surely has people in it who strongly believe that there is absolute truth. I’m on the record as laying out a pretty complex understanding of why I think putting the qualifier absolute in front of truth is a modernistic fallacy. Truth is not qualified by adjectives like absolute. So for me personally, talking about absolute truth is a nonsensical way to talk, and surely Christian theologians shouldn’t talk in that way. It isn’t helpful, because it doesn’t make sense. But that’s a book, not a paragraph in a magazine article. The short answer is, “No, Emergent has no statement on absolute truth, and there are people in Emergent who strongly hold to absolute truth.” But, personally, I think it’s a mistake...
I’m even more concerned that people have statements of faith. Statements of faith are about drawing boards, which means you have to load your weapons and place soldiers at those borders. You have to check people’s passports when they pass those borders. It becomes an obsession—guarding the borders. That is simply not the ministry of Jesus. It wasn’t the ministry of Paul or Peter. It started to become the ministry of the early Church, and it abated somewhat in the Middle Ages and blew back to life in the time of modernity. For the short duration of time that I have on this planet to do my best to partner with God and build His kingdom, I don’t want to spend it guarding borders. I’d like to spend it inviting people into the kingdom. Statements of faith don’t do they. They’re a modernistic endeavor that I’m not the least bit interested in."

(Relevant Magazine, transcript on file at Apprising Ministries)


Dr. John MacArthur:

"The bottom line in the [Emerging Church] movement is they believe that we aren’t even supposed to understand precisely what the Bible means…it is an attack on the clarity of Scripture…it is a denial that we can know what the Bible really says… They have embraced this “mystery” as if it’s true spirituality…it is at the foundation an unwillingness to accept the clear teaching of Scripture…
All human society, thinking [and] culture is ungodly and anti-biblical. What is so interesting about this [Emerging Church] movement is [it] sanctifies the culture. The Emerging Church sanctifies the postmodern culture as if it is legitimate and says if we’re going to reach these people then we’ve got to become like these people. That’s never been the Biblical way. Never.
The Bible does not change, it’s not a chameleon, it doesn’t shift and change and adapt to culture. It confronts culture…it confronts every trend with fixed unchanging Truth, in every situation. And the Emerging Church, not only is unwilling to believe the clear statement of Scripture, but it’s unwilling to take the clear statement of Scripture and confront the culture. It wants to let the culture define what Christianity should be."

(What’s So Dangerous About the Emerging Church?, CD Rom, Message: GTY107)


For those who have been mercifully given eyes that see by our absolutely sovereign Creator, the LORD God Almighty of Israel, the verdict now appears with crystalline clarity. The American Christian Church listens to pompous Emergent fools like Tony Jones at her own demise.

Don’t say you haven’t been forewarned...

8 Comments:

Blogger tony said...

Kenny,

You've got a couple significant typos in my quote that you need to correct.

Thanks,

Tony

7:58 PM  
Blogger Kennyo said...

Tony,

The problems don't lie in the typos, the problems lie in the content of what you say.

When you challenge absolute truth you are challenging the absolute truth of God's Word and his absolute sovereignty.

It is a reflection on your view of God where you are in great error and it manifests itself in your view of absolute truth.

There is still an opportunity for you to repent.

-Kenny

9:56 AM  
Blogger Ken Silva said...

Kenny,

Since I am the source you took the quotes from... Typos? I'm afraid not, these are- direct quotes literally copied and pasted from my personal transcript of that Relevant magazine article.

Experience has taught me to keep a hard copy. And I had originally copied and pasted this transcript directly from the online article itself just in case it should vanish...which it has. The original link was here:
http://www.relevantmagazine.com/beta/issue_21_missingpointA.php

I later wrote Relevant to inquire whether this is still available in an online archive but they didn't have the courtesy to even answer. So much for "brotherhood." But the quotes are accurate.

10:23 AM  
Blogger Phil Perkins said...

Ken and Kenny,
They aren't our brothers, anyway.
Kenny--your directness is needed and good.

In Christ,
Phil Perkins.

1:42 PM  
Blogger DennisS said...

I am the absolute truth, the way, and the life?

"The Emerging Church ... says if we’re going to reach these people then we’ve got to become like these people."

What would Paul say? Would he become a baseball plater to win baseball players to Christ?

Phil - that's some pretty cold shoulders. I take there is more conversation than one single exchange here.

4:42 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Mr. Jones Said:
“I’m even more concerned that people have statements of faith. Statements of faith are about drawing boards, which means you have to load your weapons and place soldiers at those borders. You have to check people’s passports when they pass those borders. It becomes an obsession—guarding the borders. That is simply not the ministry of Jesus. It wasn’t the ministry of Paul or Peter.”

Did not Paul say:

Hold on to the pattern of sound teaching that you have heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. Guard, through the Holy Spirit who lives in us, that good thing entrusted to you.
2 Tim 1-13-14

If anyone teaches other doctrine and does not agree with the sound teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ and with the teaching that promotes godliness, he is conceited, understanding nothing, but having a sick interest in disputes and arguments over words. From these come envy, quarreling, slanders, evil suspicions, and constant disagreement among men whose minds are depraved and deprived of the truth, who imagine that godliness is a way to material gain.
1Ti 6:3-5


Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to you, avoiding irreverent, empty speech and contradictions from the "knowledge" that falsely bears that name. By professing it, some people have deviated from the faith. Grace be with all of you. 1Tim
6:20-21

It would seem that Paul thought it important to guard doctrine, draw lines and guard borders. Statements of Faith simply help to succinctly define what scripture says. Are they fallible, yes since they are written by man. However, we can go to scripture to verify their (S of F) truthfulness and thus Statements of Faith are very useful.

It would seem that Mr. Jones has a statement of faith and that is simply that he says he does not need one. All too often people seem to want to sound more spiritual by saying things such as he said but at the end of the day he has drawn a line as well and that is to stop short of a Statement of Faith and it sounds like he wants to guard his opinion.

I am perplexed to no end by how many people seemed to be sucked in by what, at least to me, seems like babble. I am guessing it is because people do not think things out as they should and if a person sounds “nice” and “accepting” they simply take what they say without discerning its truth.

9:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In hopes that what we do and say is honoring to the creator God who has made and saved us. I see what Mr. Jones has written and my heart goes out to him as one who may have gone where I at one time went as a young man. I had seen the scriptures that promised punishment to evil doers, the reality of Hell and its terror, and as a new believer I did not want my friends to go there. I remember pleading with them to see Jesus for who He was, and how they could be saved from that place. I was appalled when they found no desire whatsoever to turn from their behavior that according to the Bible was sinful, embrace the Savior and be saved. Nor could I understand how they would shun such a peace that I had found in Jesus.
They were satisfied that they had nothing to be saved of, and they believed in Jesus anyway. Sort of. Anyway what about the Buddhist and all the other religionists out there that didn't know about Jesus. A good God would never capriciously send anyone to Hell, including them. Who was I to interpret. I was alarmed that possibly these friends of mine might die and spend eternity in a suffering Hell. Far more alarmed it might be predetermined that they should do so. I was distraught that these young men were on their way to Hell and there was nothing I could do to stop it. Further more I was angered that God might not do any thing to stop it.
It would seem here I was making an assumption. God would do anything that was not good. It would also seem Mr. Jones and so many like him would do the same. A good God would/could not do ______! I must confess my understanding of eternity was probably not as extensive as God’s but certainly my understanding of good was.
At this point I am drawn into a study of the Bible. In Mark 12: 24 Jesus answered and said to them, "Are you not therefore mistaken, because you do not know the Scriptures nor the power of God?
I have been astounded at myself over the years that I would presume to know more than God. I am also astounded when I hear others, that because of their sense of fairness have insisted the Bible must be wrong or must be reinterpreted to fit their understanding. I have come to the conclusion that the God who made all the universe and all of life is able to do no wrong and when we disagree I must change. I can not help but sense a small bit of arrogance that insists good could not be what I would not endorse.
I pray that the body of Christ will begin to understand that their Creator and Savior is indeed good and will do right whether we understand or not how it is so. I do not believe the word good has meaning outside of the Creator’s design. His design: and not mine or that of any other than He. Satan’s sin was the incorrect presumption of his essence and understanding. I would have to say it would be prudent for these men to examine their hearts as to why they feel God must be as they seem fit or that the Scriptures are wrong only in the areas they interpret so.
HK

3:42 PM  
Anonymous Gigi said...

It's old theodicy (the goodness of God v. the problem of pain), the doctrine of hell, and similar shocking truths that may have caused some people to stray. But the Scriptures offer answers to those questions. It's not a legitimate excuse. It is God's nature to go out of His way to reach out to everyone, because He does not want anyone to perish, does He? And he pours the rain and the sunshine on the evil and the good, doesn't He?

When I encounter situations in the Word and in daily life that appear to rock my foundations, my response should never be to trash what I know to be the truth, but to be like the Bereans & seek answers. Trashing the truth in favor of speculation that suits my fancy, or that accommodates to what I think God should do or say, is heading off the reservation into a dark & destructive path both philosophically and spiritually, because the only alternative is to become devoid of absolutes and to rely on my own reasoning and opinion.

A good example is the doctrine of eternal punishment. I don't know anyone who believes in it who gets any thrill out of proclaiming it. It's hard. But it's the reason that Jesus came. For the life of me, I don't know how any of these emergents can walk around and not realize that the world's mess is something we have created and cannot rectify apart from an internal change that only GOD can effect, thru the Spirit.

And just to be fair, I visited Jones' blog to get educated on my own about it. It's absolutely appalling to read the language; you can find the four-letter expletives in the same sentence referencing God and Scripture. Apparently he cannot communicate any other way.

These people don't want the truth, they want disciples to run after them, they want power, they want a name, they want to smear anyone who disagrees or challenges them, and as far as I'm concerned, they're part & parcel of a recycled 1960's hippie mindset with a religious twist. Nothing more.

If it were not for the fact that this poison infiltrates churches and confuses people, we should not give them any press.

Regards.

1:45 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home