“Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?”

The Radical Prophet Of God

Amazingly enough, one of keynote speakers for the General Session at the National Pastor’s Conference 2006 sponsored by Zondervan, Leadership and InterVarsityPress turned out to be Tony Campolo. Campolo is professor emeritus of Sociology at Eastern University and an ordained minister in the American Baptist Church. A while back Brian McLaren co-authored Adventures In Missing The Point with Campolo and he also endorses Campolo’s 2004 book Speaking My Mind: The Radical Evangelical Prophet Tackles the Tough Issues Christians Are Afraid to Face.

As we begin let me quickly address something about the style in which I have been writing on occasion concerning most of the leadership of the Emergent Church. I’ve been a bit taunting at times by using the title Guru, and most particularly concerning Alan Jones and Marcus Borg, Emergent spiritual director Brian McLaren’s interspiritualist mentors. Let’s not forget that McLaren has brought all this upon himself through his relentless criticisms of the historic orthodox Christian faith. And these aforementioned men McLaren has chosen to associate himself with, both of whom deny the inerrancy of Scripture and the full Deity of Jesus Christ (at least), are known by the foolish title of “living spiritual teachers.”

And regardless of all three of these men’s low view of Holy Scripture, each of them claims to be “followers” of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the Master Himself most clearly said – Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ (Matthew 23:10, KJV). The context in which Christ Jesus is speaking here is diametrically opposed to the sense that Alan Jones and Marcus Borg, obvious pretenders to the Christian faith, apply the ludicrous moniker “Living Spiritual Teacher” (Guru) to themselves. Therefore I am within my rights as one of our Lord’s true ministers of the Gospel to rebuke their mockery of our God’s Word and to ridicule them in this pretentious non-biblical office.

Since we are now going to hear from the Radical Evangelical Prophet Tony Campolo it seems fitting to remind the reader of Elijah, another “radical” prophet of God, on Mount Carmel. You will recall from 1 Kings 18 that this “troubler of Israel” calls for the people of God to repent and he tells King Ahab to gather up somewhere in the neighborhood of 450 prophets of the false god Baal. Then in verse 22 Elijah tells the people who have gathered – “I am the only one of the LORD’S prophets left, but Baal has four hundred and fifty prophets.” And then he instructs them to prepare a sacrifice for Baal while he prepares one for the LORD.

Now that the LORD God had the odds in His favor: False prophets 850 (counting the prophets of Asherah), true prophets 1, in verse 24 He has Elijah tell the prophets of Baal – “Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the LORD. The god who answers by fire—he is God.” What quickly comes emerging here is that apparently Elijah lacked the wisdom of McLaren’s “generous orthodoxy” because he’s telling them their “god” isn’t real. Be that as it may howver, Elijah instructs the prophets of Baal to call on their god, which they proceeded to do from morning till noon as they danced around the altar they had made.

You may find it interesting to note that Sufi Muslims are known for their spinning dances. When you get the time look up the orgin of “Whirling Dervishes.” But in regard to Elijah here, the inerrant historical text of the Bible tells us:

At noon Elijah began to taunt them. “Shout louder!” he said. “Surely he is a god! Perhaps he is deep in thought, or busy, or traveling. Maybe he is sleeping and must be awakened.” So they shouted louder and slashed themselves with swords and spears, as was their custom, until their blood flowed. Midday passed, and they continued their frantic prophesying until the time for the evening sacrifice. But there was no response, no one answered, no one paid attention (1 Kings 18:27-29).

A Voice That Needs To Be Heard

Now that we have this understood let’s see what Emergent spiritual director Brian McLaren said about that “radical evangelical prophet” Tony Campolo in his endorsement of Speaking My Mind:

“If you paid the full price for this book and only got chapter 8, you’d be getting a great bargain. The same is true for chapters 4,6,9,10, and 11. At a time when the term ‘evangelical’ is up for grabs, Tony’s voice needs to be heard” (back cover, emphasis added).

Well now, I should guess so; apparently Campolo is a prophet so we’d best listen to because he will “tackle the Tough issues” that preachers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ like me “are afraid to face.” So let’s see what “prophet” Campolo has for us by way of instruction in the message of the Emerging Church. I think we’ll agree that the Evangelical church he is apparently sent to with this proclamation is about as confused a bunch of Christians right now as there has ever been in the entire history of the Church. So the Church in America sure could use some prophetic teaching right now. We’re all ears Tony; so what does the Lord have to say?

Now since many of us wouldn’t be able to attend NPC 2006 I will present a few excerpts from an interview that prophet Campolo did with one of his minions by the name of Shane Claiborne. And how fortunate we are because Claibourne, founder of the Simple Way Community, will also be a presenter at NPC 2006 as well. The piece was entitled On Evangelicals And Interfaith Cooperation and Claiborne begins by asking the prophet to define “evangelical.” And our man of God Tony Campolo says:

An evangelical is someone who believes the doctrines of the Apostle’s Creed. That outlines exactly what we believe in detail. Secondly, an evangelical has a very high view of scripture though not necessarily inerrancy. And the third thing—we believe that salvation comes by being personally involved with a living resurrected Jesus. So I’ve defined evangelical in those three terms. There is a doctrinal statement, so that there is some content to what we believe. There is a source of truth, Scripture. And there is a personal relationship with Jesus.

Well, the Apostle’s Creed is the one creed that almost all of the leaders of the Emergent Church point to and say, “we firmly believe this.” The problem is that it really isn’t meant to be to be exact or outline beliefs “in detail” and it does leave itself open to reinterpreting. O but that kind of thing just never happens in the “Re”-Emerging Church does it? I must tell you however that I do become kind of concerned when I hear a “prophet” of God who doesn’t have a reverence for the Word of our Lord. Last time I checked speaking the Word exactly how God tells him to–no matter what the cost–is a rather large part of the prophetic office.

Hmm now that I come to think of it, I don’t know if I can ever recall a prophet of God arising with the message: “Thus saith the LORD; well, ah, I think so anyway.” So next Campolo gives us a prophetic utterance:

Evangelicalism is heading for a split… There is going to be one segment of evangelicalism, just like there is one segment in Islam that is not going to be interested in dialogue. But there are other evangelicals who will want to talk and establish a common commitment to a goodness with Islamic people and Jewish people particularly.

The Emergent Gospel Of Goodness

Huh? “A common commitment to a goodness.” I’m not sure I’ve ever read that in the Bible before. Now the Christian message is supposed to be, “let us have interfaith dialogues and establish a common commitment to a goodness”? You know, it’s really too bad that Jesus Christ Himself hadn’t thought of using this approach; could have saved Him that brutal crucifixion. And if only Paul had just had Emergent prophet Campolo’s insight he wouldn’t have failed in his “interfaith” dialogues with his own Jewish people. Why don’t you know that the inspired Apostle goofed it up so badly that he was literally run out of synagogues and at one point Paul was even stoned and left for dead.

Then Claiborne points out that both “Muslims and Christians are very evangelical in the sense of desiring others to come to faith in their God.” So he asks the prophet, “When we talk about inter-religious cooperation, does that mean that we need to stop trying to convert each other?” We come emerging wth Campolo’s rather predictable answer:

We don’t have to give up trying to convert each other. What we have to do is show respect to one another. And to speak to each other with a sense that even if people don’t convert, they are God’s people, God loves them, and we do not make the judgment of who is going to heaven and who is going to hell.

I think that what we all have to do is leave judgment up to God. The Muslim community is very evangelistic, however what Muslims will not do is condemn Jews and Christians to Hell if in fact they do not accept Islam.

Um, no prophet Campolo they don’t; but didn’t you know that the “fundamental” Christians you are so fond of condemning happen have a counterpart in Islam? And you are right that this same fundamental section of Islam doesn’t merely “condemn.” No, prophet Campolo Muslim fundamentalists happen to follow the exact teachings of the Koran and so instead they tend to simply kill the “infidels” who do not accept Islam. Perhaps you’ll recall the horrifically gutless attack on innocent Americans by some in its most radical fringe when they murdered thousands of them by flying stolen planes into the Twin Towers.

The Children Of God

Here in the first paragraph above is where this postmodern a-logic fails so drastically. The prophet says, “We don’t have to give up trying to convert each other.” And then he tells us that, “even if people don’t convert, they are God’s people.” Then why should they convert at all there our Emergent prophet? Why should we even waste our time and money, not to mention risking our lives, to try and convert “God’s people”…ah, into “God’s people”? If this reimagined emerging Christianity where “all mankind is the family of God” is true then there is no Gospel left to preach. So I wonder, just who might have come up with that idea?

For you see, if this really is the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, that all of mankind is already sons and daughters of God, then we have a serious problem with verses like John 1:12 – Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God. Can you see now why false prophets like Campolo and counterfeit teachers like Brian McLaren try and do away with so-called “Western” thinking? Simple logic is going to tell you that if you need the right to become children of God, then it’s pretty obvious you were not children of God before.

This has always been the historic Christian witness right from the very beginning of Christ’s Church. Luke, the very capable first historian of the Christian Church, records for us something that the Apostle Peter (a pretty reliable source) preached:

then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. He is “ ‘the stone you builders rejected, which has become the capstone.’ Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:10-12)

And you know, this squares up very nicely with what the Apostle John (another pretty reliable source) recorded Jesus Himself (an even more reliable Source) saying – I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me(John 14:6). Let me see if I can make this as simple as possible. The strength and discernment of our Lord’s Church today is well beyond an alarmingly low ebb. I can just hear people saying: “Oh I don’t like to hear this kind of thing, it’s not uplifting.” If one sincerely looks at what the Gospels tell us about the real Jesus of Nazareth you just are not going to come away with the ecumenical message that is at the poisoned root of the Emerging Church and their severe misunderstanding of His real teachings.

The Gate Is Narrow

Yet the fact remains that you can actually be a leader in the Emergent Church without even being wise enough to understand the following basic truth: All the postmodern skepticism in this warped world will never change the absolute Truth that Jesus Christ of Nazareth preached a message that sin has already excluded mankind from the Kingdom of God apart from being born again. The LORD God Himself in human flesh said we must: “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:13-14).

As we get ready to wrap up Part One of our look at Emergent Evangelical prophet of God Tony Campolo, his disciple Claiborne praises the sage for his words of eastern wisdom stated above that we “don’t have to give up trying to convert each other. What we have to do is show respect to one another.” Claiborne says to the radical Evangelical prophet, “That seems like a healthy distinction—between converting and condemning.” Then he states the reimagined Emergent mantra to Campolo that one “of the barriers seems to be the assumption that we have the truth and folks who experience things differently will all go to Hell.”

Well, that’s not entirely accurate; the Christian Church teaches those who are not in Christ suffer that fate, and that experience really has nothing whatever to do with it. But herein we see the eternally condemning problem for those caught by this seeker sensitive purpose driven emerging deception. We are no longer approaching Christianity by what the Bible teaches, but rather by how we “feel” about what we allegedly “experience” God doing. And so Claiborne seeks the insight of the prophet and asks Campolo: “How do we unashamedly maintain a healthy desire for others to experience the love of God as we have experienced it without condemning others who experience God differently?”

Islam is much more gracious towards evangelical Christians who are faithful to the New Testament, than Christians are towards Islamic people who are faithful to the Koran. The Islamic faith will ask, “Are you faithful to the book that you have?” Mohammad was very understanding that there was great truth in Christianity. He differed with us in that he felt he had a more complete truth, and Islam would hold to that, but Mohammad contended that we would ultimately be judged in terms of the truth that we had at our disposal.

I think there are Muslim brothers and sisters who are willing to say, “You live up to the truth as you understand it. I will live up to the truth as I understand it, and we will leave it up to God on judgment day.”

Here we are treated to a most impressive exhibition of straddling the fence. Men like Claiborne and Campolo and McLaren are not willing to face the persecution that will come as we share the exclusive message of salvation through personal faith in Jesus Christ; which by the way, is God’s Gospel and not something the Christian Church made up. Sorry about that Mr. prophet but the Bible says nothing about being judged according to the truth we have, that is a misunderstanding of Romans 1 and 2. We note also in paragraph two the prophet Campolo refers to our Muslim “brothers and sisters.”

However, in a proper Biblical worldview the term “brothers and sisters” can only refer to those men and women who are in Christ. And then the radical Evangelical prophet continues his emerging instruction that we will be judged according to the truth we had as if God has the ol’ scale and balances ready for us after we die:

There is much in Christianity that would suggest exactly the same thing, particularly Romans the 2nd chapter, where the apostle Paul says “What do we say of those who do not accept the law of God,” and I would add “as we understand it,” “and are faithful to all the things that God calls us to do—will God not have to make room for them?”

Please Prophet Tell Me What I Already Want To Hear

Oh, men and women we have a very special prophet here indeed. First Campolo liberally paraphrases the Apostle Paul, and apparently he also has the authority to amend what an Apostle has taught because Campolo says – “I would add ‘as we understand it.’” However, because this Emerging prophet isn’t bound by the authority of the infallible and inerrant Word of God in the Bible, he doesn’t have to care that Scripture does not teach this at all. Campolo instructs us that the answer to Paul’s rhetorical question above would be “the obvious sense—‘but of course.’” And then the radical Emergent prophet goes on:

So I think that the apostle Paul would be a lot more generous towards Islamic people than most of my evangelical brothers and sisters are. If both sides are willing to live up to the truth as they perceive it and if both sides are willing to say we are not going to compromise what we believe but we are convinced that in the end the other side will have a chance to respond in a positive manner to what we believe. I think we can live together in peace and without attacking each other and without condemning each other.

Catholicism would say that at the moment of death every person is confronted in that split moment with Christ and is given the opportunity of saying yes or no. To say otherwise is to say God has got to be a pretty unfair deity, to condemn three quarters of the human race to hell without them ever having a chance.

I’ve got to believe that Jesus is the only Savior but being a Christian is not the only way to be saved. A student at Princeton once asked Protestant theologian Karl Barth, “Do you think that other religions can be valid avenues to God and His salvation?” Barth answered, “No! No religion can provide a valid avenue to God and His salvation. Not even the Christian religion. Only Jesus Christ can serve as mediator to God.”

Emergent Lies And Distortions

What is so annoying about the Emergent Church is their constant misrepresentation of what we Christians who actually believe the Bible are teaching. No one is advocating “attacking” and “condemning” people of other faiths. We are trying to let them know that the god they think they serve is not a really God at all, but is instead an demon impostor. The Bible says – the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God (1 Corinthians 10:19); and this is what Paul means when he tells those who are now in Christ – Formerly, when you did not know God, you were slaves to those who by nature are not gods (Galatians 4:8).

I couldn’t care less that these emerging false prophets in this counterfeit church movement have run with this ecumenical message that God did not give them. This is what the Bible says, and as long as one dares call himself a Christian then he had best be telling people what his Master Christ Jesus has told him to say. But look how our people-pleasing prophet will even appeal to apostate Rome while desperately grasping at straws to support his antichrist message. And look at the unmitigated arrogance when this fool then resorts to giving us the corrupt reasoning of sinful mankind who deserves nothing from God in the first place but death!

Our radical Emergent prophet is telling us that the sound Biblical message I have just shared with you “is to say God has got to be a pretty unfair deity, to condemn three quarters of the human race to hell without them ever having a chance.” An unfair Deity! Perhaps you’d rather Christ have not come at all Mr. prophet. You are in error because you don’t know the Word of God; the Lord you say you serve prophet Campolo. Have you not read Romans chapter 5? Christ came and died for mankind to demonstrate God’s great love for creatures who were powerless to save themselves; and what is more, who even think of Him as our enemy. You dare to have the insolence to say the Creator Himself is unfair? Then hear the Word of the Lord – But who are you, O man, to talk back to God? (Romans 9:20)

Enter Through The Narrow Gate

In closing, let’s see if together we can unlock the deep secret behind these apparently O so mysterious words for our radical Emergent prophet Tony Campolo. Enter through the narrow gate. Hmm, it would appear that someone has got to enter through. Well, this just might mean then they are outside of something Mr. prophet. I wonder what they are outside of? You might remember that earlier in the Book of Matthew the Master said – “For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven” (5:20).

Could Jesus actually be trying to tell us that mankind is outside of the Kingdom of Heaven? Is this the enter our Master is talking about when He said – “Enter through the narrow gate”? It kind of looks like it; so maybe the problem is that nasty NIV “New Age” translation, it’s supposed to obscure what God has said. But what a minute, this is the version I’m using and it says the narrow gate. Well, it sure would appear here Mr. prophet that Christ is telling us we are outside the Kingdom of God, and if we wish to enter it we are going to have to go through some narrow gate.

Ok; if we must enter at this point then we are still outside the Kingdom of Heaven, and apparently there is some kind of narrow gate. The next thing we’d have to do Mr. Campolo, our radical “evangelical” prophet who doesn’t seem to know the Gospel, is to ascertain what this narrow gate could be that the LORD God Almighty in human flesh is talking about. Hey, in the Gospel of John the Apostle tells us that Jesus says – I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved” (John 10:9). Amazingly enough if one would only skip their morning meditation session for once and give all of this a little thought they’d see that this is actually pretty easy to see.

Mr. prophet, do you think that this just might shed a bit of light on John 14:6 which was quoted here earlier? Men and women, for the benefit of those who have been fooled by false prophets like Tony Campolo and his friend, Emergent spiritual director Brian McLaren, we now put this all together with the prayer that you might actually be willing to listen to the Truth from Scripture and to turn your back on those twisting God’s Word. Here is why the historic orthodox Christian Church that has been contending for this faith Authored by Jesus Christ of Nazareth has always preached this “exclusive” Gospel; the Gospel which is so hated by the Emerging Church movement.

Christ Jesus Himself has instructed us that to get into the Kingdom of God we must:

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:13-14)

The Emergent Path To Destruction

Then Jesus tells us that He is that gate. So as we put His Name into the verses above and explain their plain meaning the Truth will come emerging as to why all who die apart from Christ will go to the place that our Lord Personally called Hell. Enter the Kingdom of God through Jesus Christ. For wide is the gate, the methodology of human wisdom shared by Emergent prophet Campolo above, and broad is the road of the “generous orthodoxy” taught by Brian McLaren that leads to destruction, which is Hell; and tragically many enter through it because it appeals to their flesh, as well as to their corrupt human reasoning.

But small is the exclusive message about the gate, Jesus Christ of Nazareth, and narrow the road, the life of dying to self, and not “finding” the Self; narrow the road which the true Christian must walk that leads to life for unregenerate mankind who is dead in their sins–and once again–tragically only a few find it. As my teacher Dr. Walter Martin said in his message The Spirit of this Age, the vast majority of mankind is not going to make it because they just will not repent. And the spiritually cowardly counterfeit Emergent teachers like Campolo and McLaren are actually leading these people down the broad road to destruction.

If you have been following my writings here you will have no doubt noticed that I vehemently hate what these false prophets of the Emergent Church are trying to pawn off as Christian to the unsuspecting in Christ’s Name. We will continue our look at the Emergent Evangelical Prophet Tony Campolo in Part Two; but today I encourage you in the Lord that no one need fear these fools in leadership of the Emergent Church with their man-pleasing message which is emerging from the very pit of Hell itself.

“Who is this that darkens My Counsel with words without knowledge.”

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