Posted - 29 Aug 2002 : 08:57:31
| The purpose of this book is to increase bible study by those who are disciples of Jesus Christ. This study will greatly enrich all that participate, and it will lead to a greater respect for the Word of God. I am not so arrogant as to think that my conclusions regarding the holy scriptures are the only ones acceptable to God. However, the average church member in the denominational world has never considered some of the major truths of God's word. For that reason they are accepting, practicing and teaching many false doctrines that were inherited from the Roman Catholic church or that have evolved since the reformation. Most alarming, the average members have been so conditioned by emotionalism that they seem no longer to care.
This book is for the average member of denominational churches. The author was raised in a denomination and taught by family and church not to challenge the religious beliefs of others. This is the essence of the problem. For our failure to challenge the beliefs of others very quickly leads to a failure to challenge our own beliefs. "If everyone else is all right, then I must be all right as well." This is a sure formula for complacency and ignorance.
Many have been conditioned to believe that it just does not matter what we believe or practice. If so, there is no reason to bother studying or discussing biblical truth. But the bible itself states emphatically that it does matter. As you read the scriptures quoted in this book, this will become quite clear. We plead with you to allow these scriptures to find their way into the fertile soil of an open and contrite heart. Your eternal destiny depends on it.
Our country is in a major moral crisis due to a lack of regard for biblical teaching. Well over 30 million abortions have been performed since it was legalized, eclipsing Hitler's holocaust. Homosexuality and other forms of sexual deviancy are being rationalized and taught in our public schools as "alternative life styles." Teen pregnancy has soared. Marriage for life has become the exceptional family mode. Gambling has become the politicians' tax of choice. Our airwaves are flooded with pornography. Our jails are overflowing, and the only solution that the politicians are proposing is to build more. Drugs and alcoholic beverages dominate our recreational activities. We could go on and on, but if these obvious alarms do not wake up the reader, nothing will. We can continue to bury our heads in the sand, or we can begin looking for the only solution: Christ.
What has this to do with the myths of denominationalism? The denominations have failed to teach the truth on some of the most fundamental and obvious of biblical truths. Is it any wonder that they flounder with regard to the moral issues which plague our country? If the bible is not the standard of authority with regard to our salvation and our relationship with God, then why should we trust it with regard to these moral issues? We will prove that the denominations have rejected the bible as their standard of authority. Thus, members have drawn the most logical of conclusions: "the bible should not deter us from doing exactly what we want to do when we want to do it." While we do not deny that there are notable exceptions, any objective, unbiased observer would agree that this is the predominant attitude in our country today.
If this book should find some degree of success, we fully expect that it will be cited as a divisive instrument of the devil by popular denominational teachers. Those familiar with the New Testament will recognize that this is identical to the reception that the religious rulers of Jesus' day gave Him (Mt. 12:24; 22:15-45). He clearly taught that His followers would have to suffer the very same treatment that he suffered (Rom. 8:17).
We fully recognize that this does not prove the validity of our assertions -- many cults and devil-worshipers are rejected (and some persecuted), and they are far from the truth. On the other hand, the fact that the vast majority believes something does not make it right (Mt. 7:13-14). It is God's word and God's word alone that determines the truth (Rom. 3:4). We only ask that the doctrines put forward in this book be evaluated in that light.
To those who feel that this is just all negative, please recognize that it is impossible to assert a positive without being negative toward the opposite position. Read Matthew 23. Jesus teachings were opposed at every turn by the religious establishment of His day, but He did not stop because His teachings were considered negative toward them.
It is not our intent to be divisive -- in fact, those who consider themselves part of Christianity are so divided now that further division would seem impossible. The basic structure of denominationalism itself is the main reason for this, as we will show in Chapter 1.
As you consider this book and the criticism of it, ask yourself: who is interested in the truth, and who is interested in maintaining the status quo? Who is benefiting from the current ignorance of God's word? What are they doing to perpetuate the myths, and why? As in Jesus day, the answers are tied closely to political and economic power of a leadership that can only be sustained by the enslavement of their followers in ignorance (Jn. 8:32). Those who love the truth will appreciate criticism of current practices and teachings which are inconsistent with Gods holy word.
We do not want you to believe anything that we write without scriptural evidence. We hope you will challenge everything in this book. Other than the scriptural quotations, this is not an inspired work; to claim such would be sinful and would curse this author with the plagues written in the book of Revelation (Rev. 18:22-23). Believe only God's word; for it, and it alone, is capable of "thoroughly furnishing you unto every good work" (2 Tim. 3:16-17). If I am wrong, correct me as you would a brother. If this book does nothing but get some to read and study the bible (even to defeat what is taught here) it will accomplish its mission.
SEVEN MYTHS OF DENOMINATIONALISM