Friday, March 8, 2013

Two Creation Ministries Endorse The Bible Miniseries

Posted by Christine Pack

I love Young Earth Creation ministries, absolutely love them. Talk about a hard road for a Christian to walk, that is by far one of the hardest in this day and age. And I should know, because as a non-believer I was one of the most strident and most outspoken evolutionary thinkers around. In fact, I used to take particular delight in mocking and ridiculing Christians, especially Young Earth Christians. Christians were bad enough, but Young Earth Christians? Christians who rejected all the scientific evidence (or so I had been taught) that destroyed their young earth timeframe? Oh my, just turn me loose. I was ready to let fly with "carbon dating" at a moment's notice. So imagine my dismay, then, to find myself one day.......saved. A new creation in Christ. Born again. I was, in so many ways, like an actual baby. I would crave the Bible the way a newborn baby craves milk. And as I was reading and reading and reading through the Bible, the Holy Spirit began to do the work of dismantling my old, worldly ideas. The old man was gone, I was being rebuilt. I sometimes joke that this was a period in which God was breaking me down like a Marine sergeant, only to be building me back up in truth. I had so many wrong ideas about life, about the world, about myself, about marriage, about relationships, and, well, about everything. Except for one thing: I was pretty sure that science had proved evolution. I say "pretty sure" and not "convinced" because during that breaking down/building up period, I was truly no longer convinced that I had ever gotten anything right in my life, prior to salvation.

Enter the Young Earth Creation ministries. Yes, I did come around on the young earth/evolution issue, which just goes to show that perhaps God has a sense of humor. The mocker was now the mocked, and trust me, the irony of this is not lost on me. There are two young earth ministries, in particular, with which I have become very familiar: Answers in Genesis (AIG) and Creation Ministries International (CMI). These ministries are filled with scientists who have studied the evidences for and against young earth within their particular fields of expertise - archaeology, biology, chemistry, astronomy, physics, etc. - and have come away with the conviction that young earth is the most plausible explanation for the state of the earth today. It's been very exciting to me to have access to great articles, books and DVDs on the subject of young earth. No longer does the Christian have to just smile feebly and plead "Just have faith in Jesus!" when the secular Darwinian humanist mocks him with "scientific" data; we now have data of our own, and believe me, there are no village idiots at either of the Creationism ministries linked above.

As far as Creation Ministries International goes, I have listened to many of their testimonies, including testimonies by Dr. Carl Weiland, Dr. Jonathan Sarfati, and Dr. David Catchpoole. In fact, I have burned Dr. Catchpoole's testimony to CD for the purpose of handing it out to evolutionary atheists and skeptics. I have also handed out In Six Days, a young earth apologetics book which Dr. Sarfati contributed to. And, one of my all time favorite books is Gary Bates' Alien Intrusion. And Answers in Genesis? Our family has been to countless AIG seminars, including hosting one with Paul Taylor (AIG-UK) at our own church. We also have hundreds of dollars worth of AIG resources, and I've  purchased and given away many, many, many AIG items as witnessing materials. We've visited the Creation Museum three times since it opened in 2007, and I also regularly point the readers of our blog here to Answers in Genesis as a valuable resource. I'm saying all this to demonstrate how well I know these ministries, and that I truly do value them and their contribution to Christianity.

So I was surprised when I found out that both Answers in Genesis and Creation Ministries International recently endorsed the Bible miniseries now playing on the History Channel. (As an aside, if I had to hazard a guess as to why I think these ministries have written favorably about this series, I would say that it is probably because the series does show Adam and Eve as historical figures, and does depict a global flood, issues which are of utmost importance, obviously, to young earth ministries because these ideas are so profoundly under attack in today's secular culture. But more about that later.) You can read the Answers in Genesis article here, and the Creation Ministries International article here.

We recently wrote about our concern over this miniseries, given that the Board of Advisors for the miniseries includes seeker sensitive pastor Rick Warren, and Prosperity Gospel preachers Joel Osteen and T.D. Jakes. (You can review the Board of Advisors for the Bible miniseries here.) The miniseries was also produced by a devout Roman Catholic, former Touched By An Angel star Roma Downey, who, while a talented actress, has some very problematic theological views, at best.

Also, after viewing the first episode of the Bible miniseries myself, I am truly surprised that such highly respected ministries as AIG and CMI would endorse such a series. The problems are numerous, including many extrabiblical details that take far more than creative license in the telling of certain stories, including angels in Sodom who were attacked by the crowd and had to run to Lot's house, screaming for help, but who then went all Ninja warrior and threw down some moves on the Sodomites so Lot's family could escape. That's from Genesis, Chapter......nah, just kidding, that's not in the Bible.

Or how about the depiction of Abraham taking Isaac up the mountain to sacrifice him? This one was far more troubling to me, in that it was bad/bordering on blasphemous in its depiction of God. On a personal note, the biblical account of Abraham and Isaac is one of my favorite passages in the Bible, but it must be properly taught and understood. I learned this story as a young girl in a theologically liberal church that did not give any context or any explanation of this as a one-time event meant to point us to Christ, our ultimate sacrifice, and to show that even though God stayed the hand of Abraham over his son, his only son, whom he loved, that when it came time for God's hand to fall upon his own Son, his only Son, whom he loved, God did not stay his own hand. BUT, out of great mercy and love for mankind, God let his hand fall upon his Son so that his wrath could be appeased and atonement could be made for undeserving sinners. Understood in its proper context and its place in redemptive history, that story of Abraham and Isaac is almost unbearably sweet to the saved sinner who looks upon it and marvels at God's great love. But without such context or an understanding of the redemptive theme of the entire Bible, in which the historical account of Abraham and Isaac is meant to point us to the future, greater Sacrifice yet to come, that story just seems cruel, and God comes off as arbitrary, capricious and easily angered. In fact, the story of Abraham/Isaac that I learned as a young girl in a liberal church, in the disjointed way that I learned it, separated from its place in redemptive hisstory, was a story that stayed with me and troubled me for years. I can also definitively point to that particular story, as one of the reasons I ultimately walked away from the church in my late teens. Who would choose to worship a God who would tell a father to murder his own son? Who could love a God like that? And yet, the Bible miniseries also depicts the story of Abraham/Isaac in the same way: disjointed, a bit arbitrary, and without any teaching about this event as a part of redemptive history.

To sum it up, what the Bible miniseries got so wrong (skimming over the redemptive theme of the Bible), is exactly what Answers In Genesis, in my opinion, has always gotten so right. Ken Ham in particular has been consistently faithful to show why getting Genesis right matters, and not just in the details, but in the overall message of the Bible. Simply put, AIG has been a light in the darkness regarding this issue. Is this not true? In the "7 C's of History" section of the Creation Museum created by Ken Ham and AIG, there is a cohesive theme, and that theme is the unfolding redemption through Christ. For those who have been to the Creation Museum, think about the way the sacrificial system is presented in the museum walk-through, as well as the types and shadows of the first animal slain to cover the sin of Adam and Eve, Abraham and Isaac, the Passover, etc., all meant to point to Christ, our final and greatest Sacrificial Lamb, all meant to point us toward the ultimate message of the Bible: that God has made a way for sinful man to be reconciled to a high and holy God.  I mean come on, that's brilliant stuff, glorious stuff. But this Bible miniseries does not make that just strings disconnected stories together in a disjointed way. Big problem.

So, can a case be made that the "God" of the Bible miniseries is an accurate portrayal of the God of the Bible? I contend that no, such a case cannot be made. The "God" presented in the Bible miniseries is NOT the God of the Bible: in the Bible miniseries, "God" is arbitrary, capricious and easily angered. But in reality......

God is NOT arbitrary.......from the very first pages of the Bible, He is beginning to lay out, through glorious types and shadows, the redemptive theme of the Bible and his plan to reconcile wicked sinners to himself.

God is NOT capricious......He is very long-suffering, attested to numerous times in Scripture (Exodus 34:6, Numbers 14:18, Psalm 103:8, Psalm 145:8, Romans 2:4, 2 Peter 3:9).

God is NOT easily angered......He was clear about his instructions to Adam and Eve, and his anger was righteous and just.

With this Bible miniseries, I have been feeling like I was reliving The Shack controversy all over again. During all The Shack hoopla, we had people mad at us, furious, for daring to challenge the portrayal of God in The Shack. The argument was that, well, hey, maybe it's not totally accurate, but at least people are interested in God because of it! (and never mind that the "God" of The Shack was presented heretically, with the Trinity being tossed out, and a sly form of Universalism undergirding the story). With the Bible miniseries, we're hearing much the same argument. Many Christians are stating that the Bible miniseries will spur lost people to be interested in the Bible. Christians are telling me, Stop being so nitpicky over doctrine! At least this will get people interested in the Bible! But how can that be true? I contend that (as in The Shack, as in the Bible miniseries) a wrong portrayal of God and his character and nature won't make lost people want to know God more; it will only serve to make them more confused and unclear about who God really is. If that's not clear enough, let me put it this way: if someone came to me and described a man who was violent, verbally abusive and addicted to pornography, and THEN told me they were describing my husband, I would be furious! That is not an accurate description of my husband at all. So it really does matter that we are honest in what we say about others, doesn't it? And beyond that, shouldn't we be striving to be the most honest, the most accurate of all when attempting to depict God? Well, the "God" in the Bible miniseries is NOT the God of the Bible. Nope.

Now please understand me: I am not saying categorically that there is not any way EVER that God couldn't somehow use this series to reach someone. God can and does use imperfect means to accomplish some of his purposes (after all, He uses us to carry the gospel forth, right?). For instance, if someone came to me and said, you know, I watched that series, and came under conviction, and I'd like to talk about it with you because I know you are a Christian, I wouldn't say, well, you can't really be under conviction because that series is blasphemous! No, I would go through the gospel, and it could be that, by God's grace, that person truly becomes a born again believer, which only proves that God is merciful to use very imperfect means, at times. My main point, however, is that I don't think this series, because of its profound theological weaknesses, should be purposefully and intentionally used as a tool to reach the lost, while at the same time recognizing that God, in his infinite mercy, might even use something as doctrinally and theologically weak as this to reach someone. But I personally could never recommend this series as an evangelism tool, it's just simply too problematic.

These are not minor quibbles. As noted above, AIG has always done a tremendous job at showing the redemptive theme that runs through the the question is: when they screened this series, why didn't they "get" that the Bible miniseries so profoundly fails to portray this redemptive theme in a coherent manner? But apparently, somehow they missed this. And as much as I appreciate these valuable Young Earth ministries, perhaps I should point out that the issue of Young Earth Creation (including a literal Adam and Eve and a literal global flood sent as a judgment on wickedness), although important, is not the only issue we need to be contending for today. Doctrine is important, doctrine really does matter, and just as it has been important for born again believers to reclaim and hold the line on truth regarding the biblical account of creation, it is also important for us to hold the line on how God's character and nature, as well as his overarching plan for the redemption of sinners, are portrayed. And in this, the Bible miniseries is an epic Fail.

 Additional Resources 

The Bible on the History Channel: A Review (Answers in Genesis article)

The Bible.....On the History Channel? (Creation Ministries International article)

History Channel’s ‘The Bible’ Exalts Man Over God

Theological Errors of the History Channel's Bible Miniseries, Part 1 (Pirate Christian Radio)

Rick Warren Lays Out The Theology of The History Channel Miniseries, The Bible (Pirate Christian Radio)

Wretched's Review (Todd Friel)

Joel Osteen a Consultant on Bible Miniseries

Roma Downey on Being Catholic

The History Channel’s Bible Miniseries Mishandling of God’s Word (Mike Ratliff)

Touched By An Angel, But Which Kind? (Berit Kjos)

The Bible Miniseries Board of Advisors

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Former SGM Founder Brent Detwiler Interviewed About Class Action Sex Abuse Lawsuit

Posted by Christine Pack

As recently reported here, Brent Detwiler, one of the Sovereign Grace Ministries founders, has called for prominent Christian leaders to separate from Sovereign Grace Ministries pastor C.J. Mahaney due to an ongoing sex abuse class action lawsuit that has been brought against Sovereign Grace Ministries. Some of the leaders Detwiler has called upon to separate from Mahaney are John Piper, Voddie Baucham, Mark Driscoll, Al Mohler, Mark Dever, Paige Patterson and Ed Stetzer. John Piper, however, and perhaps in response to this exhortation from Detwiler, made a public show of his ongoing support for Mahaney by recently preaching at a Sovereign Grace Ministries plant, where he made this statement:
“I chose to be here. Nobody forced me.......(Mahaney's) a pretty persuasive guy, but I really, really wanted to be here, and therefore the opportunity arose and I snatched it, and I’m thankful for it.” (online source)
Former SGM leader Brent Detwiler was recently interviewed on the Janet Mefferd radio show regarding the class action suit against SGM. That interview can be listened to in its entirety here.

I would like to point out that this is not a situation of one, two or three cases......this is a class action lawsuit, involving many different families. And also, the issue is not over insignificant matters (i.e., administrative issues). These are situations involving children alleged to have been sexually molested. Having watched, as an unbeliever, while the Roman Catholic Church attempted for decades to veil their in-house attempts to "handle" the rampant pedophilia within their ranks, it is my desire, at the very minimum, that leaders known to have close connections with Mahaney to at least publicly urge for transparency as this case moves forward. I'm not in any way asserting that Sovereign Grace is an organization filled with covered up cases of pedophilia, but at the same time, shouldn't SGM/Mahaney be seeking to be as transparent as possible? And giving more information, rather than less? One would think so, but in reality, SGM is claiming, according to Christianity Today, that the courts should not be "second-guessing" their in-house handling of these cases. In my opinion, SGM/Mahaney are being hurt, not helped, by their strategy to claim infringement of First Amendment rights in the handling of these sex abuse cases:
"SGM believes that allowing courts to second-guess pastoral guidance would represent a blow to the First Amendment that would hinder, not help, families seeking spiritual direction among other resources in dealing with the trauma related to any sin including child sexual abuse," Tommy Hill, SGM's director of administration, said in a November 14 statement. (online source)
It also seems clear to me that Mahaney's Christian brothers have an obligation to exhort their friend and brother in Christ to do the right thing in this matter. Perhaps they are doing this privately, but my wish is that this would be done publicly as well, as this is a public court case being played out for all the world to see. I certainly think that Mahaney's brothers in Christ could strike the right note of biblical hopefulness ("Love hopes all things" 1 Cor 13:7), while at the same time exhorting Mahaney and Sovereign Grace Ministries to biblical honesty and transparency.

I recognize that false accusers can form class action lawsuits. I also understand from Scripture that there will come a time when the whole world will turn against Christianity, and I suspect that there will likely be court cases involved in how that plays out. I do get that. For instance, I observe a growing hostility against Christians who won't accept the same sex marriage agenda or the push to normalize the LGBT community, with media reports that portray Christians as bigoted, homophobic, unloving, intolerant, etc., etc. I am also observing a growing hostility against homeschooling because the secular humanists seem to grasp that many of those holding out against the secular agenda are within that community. So I suspect that there will be lawsuits along those lines in the coming months and years as this world, and our country, spiral deeper and deeper into depravity (see Romans 1:18-32). With all this in mind, and knowing that the world is watching, I think this matter with Sovereign Grace Ministries/CJ Mahaney could and should be handled in such a way that we give the benefit of the doubt, and yet also give a clear call for transparency.

 Additional Resources 

Lawsuit Claims Sovereign Grace Ministries Concealed Sex Abuse

SGM - Updated Statement on Reported Lawsuit

Sovereign Grace Ministries: In Sex Abuse Case, Courts Shouldn't "Second Guess" SGM's Pastoral Counseling

Sovereign Grace Ministries: Courts Shouldn't 'Second-Guess' Pastoral Counseling of Sex Abuse Victims

SGM Leader Mark Prater Gives A Talk That Is Symptomatic of Unhealthy SGM Leadership

Mahaney Gets Support From John Piper

2/28/13 - Janet Mefferd Interviews Former SGM Founder Brent Detwiler About The Sovereign Grace Ministries Lawsuit

1/18/13 - Janet Mefferd Interviews Attorney Bill O’Neil About the Sovereign Grace Ministries Lawsuit

10/18/2012 - Janet Mefferd Interviews Attorney Susan Burke About Lawsuit Against Sovereign Grace Ministries ("I don't know how long evangelicalism can ignore this problem.")

Flagship Churches Prepare To Leave As Lawsuit Charges C.J. Mahaney's Sovereign Grace Ministries With Covering Up Child Sex Abuse

Copy of Lawsuit Filed Against Sovereign Grace Ministries

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Joel Osteen a Consultant on Upcoming Bible Miniseries

Posted by Christine Pack

A new miniseries entitled The Bible will be shown on the History Channel in March 2013. This miniseries was produced by former Touched By An Angel actress Roma Downey and her husband, Mark Burnett. Unfortunately, and as much as I would like to be genuinely excited about this upcoming program, I have concerns about what message this miniseries might convey. Roma Downey, although a lovely and talented actress, is a devout Roman Catholic with New Age type views. Her close friendship with fellow Touched actress Della Reese resulted in New Thought minister Della Reese performing the marriage ceremony for Roma Downey and her husband, Mark Burnett. (You can learn more about Della Reese's New Thought/New Age beliefs here.)  The Wall Street Journal also reported on Dec 16, 2012 that "Word of Faith" pastor Joel Osteen worked closely with the producers on this film, as well as megachurch pastor Rick Warren and TD Jakes, another Word of Faith/prosperity preacher. (You can review the Board of Advisors for the Bible miniseries here.) With this is mind, I'm thinking there will be some serious theological weaknesses in the final product. From the Wall Street Journal article titled 'The Voice' Creator Mark Burnett Hears a Higher Calling:
In recent years (Producer Mark) Burnett and (his wife, actress Roma) Downey have become friends with celebrity televangelist Joel Osteen, who preaches at a church in Houston that is home to the largest congregation in the U.S. Mr. Osteen is advising Mr. Burnett on the show.
"He's been to [our church] several times and we come over to their house for dinner and things like that," Mr. Osteen said.
Trailer for the upcoming miniseries:

 Additional Resources 

Theological Errors of the History Channel's Bible Miniseries, Part 1

Rick Warren Lays Out The Theology of The History Channel Miniseries, The Bible

Roma Downey on Being Catholic

The History Channel’s Bible Miniseries Mishandling of God’s Word

T.D. Jakes Working The Crowd

Touched By An Angel, But Which Kind?

The Bible Miniseries Board of Advisors

Dr. John MacArthur Names Joel Osteen a "Mouthpiece For Satan"

Pastor Justin Peters Biblically Exposes the Word of Faith "Prosperity Gospel"

Joel Osteen Not Sure If Jesus Christ Is the Only Way to Heaven

Joel Osteen's New Age Teaching and Worldview

Monday, February 18, 2013

Natural = Better? [UPDATED]

Posted by Sola Sisters

When it comes to food, does "natural" automatically equal "better?" If this is your thinking, I have some food for thought for you. While I do agree that eating food that is less processed is probably more healthy than eating food that is highly processed, we also should remember that Jesus himself declared ALL foods clean:
“Nothing outside a man can make him ‘unclean’ by going into him. Rather, it is what comes out of a man that makes him ‘unclean.’” After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable. “Are you so dull?” he asked. “Don’t you see that nothing that enters a man from the outside can make him ‘unclean’? For it doesn’t go into his heart but into his stomach, and then out of his body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods “clean.") (Mark 7:15-19, my emphasis)
Another thought: When Adam and Eve sinned and brought about the Fall, ALL of the world was cursed, including the plants.
"To Adam, God said, 'Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, You must not eat from it, Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life." (Gen 3:17)
"We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time." (Rom 8:22)
So going back to nature and revering natural, plant-based food, treatments, etc. as automatically better, or somehow more pure, is faulty thinking. The plants were also subject to the curse.

Some more verses to consider:
"The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer. If you point these things out to the brothers, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, brought up in the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed." (1 Tim 4:1-6, my emphasis)
Obviously, we need to follow biblical principles when it comes to food, and in this area, God's word is not completely silent on the matter: we ought not be gluttonous, we mustn't make food an idol, and we should give thanks for what the Lord has provided. But what I am finding today is that many Christians I run into have the most incredibly strong opinions when it comes to food, often to the point of attaching spiritual significance to their food choices. Now, perhaps I'm ultra-attuned to picking up on this, having once been enslaved myself to legalistic ideas about food that involved, yes, attaching spiritual significance to my food choices. You see, as a New Ager, I had been a militant vegetarian, who only ever ate anything organic, whole grain, and minimally processed. At the time, I don't think I would have said that I viewed my choices as being morally superior to other people's choices, but looking back, it's absolutely clear to me that I did. And then, even as a new Christian, I still held on to some of my (militant) ideas about food, and for a brief season in my early Christian walk accepted the Hebrew Roots teaching about following the Leviticus food laws. I am somewhat embarrassed to admit this, but I was one of those who would chastise, brow-beat and question the intelligence and diligence of anyone who didn't have some arduous Food Plan for themselves and for their families.  However, as God began to sanctify me over time, He also was really working in my heart about my food legalism. But it has taken me 10 years to get to the place I am now. Ten years.

Please hear what I'm saying: I am not saying that anyone else is in bondage to food legalism, or that anyone who desires to make healthier food choices is automatically a legalist. What I am doing is sounding the alarm that Christians ought to be on guard against unwittingly taking on worldly concepts about their food choices. I'm saying this because the New Age teaching I was under has gone from being something that only a very small minority of people in this country believed and acted upon to becoming pretty much mainstreamed. This subtle New Age teaching is everywhere in the culture now, and the teaching is this: your food choices have a moral component to them. But this is simply not true, and I think I've biblically made my case about this.
"But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer." (1 Tim 4:1-5)
Please also understand, again, that I am not saying we shouldn't be wise about our food choices, but at the same time, we can take this too far, until it almost becomes an obsession with some. The problem I see is when Christians begin to equate eating processed food with being sinful, OR the inverse: they sometimes seem to equate eating unprocessed food as being somehow more righteous or more virtuous, as if there were some moral/spiritual component to our decisions about food. Having said all that, my personal preference is still to eat a minimally processed diet, lots of fruits and veggies, etc. In fact, I have been teased by some friends that I must be part Amish, because I grind my own wheat for making bread (yes, I really do). But at the same time, I want to be balanced in my thinking, and be able to be like Paul, content in any and every circumstance. What this means for me is that I desire, by God's grace, to be content whether I am eating as I prefer, that is to say, food that is fresh and minimally processed, or, whether I'm eating a Chick-Fil-A sandwich and waffle fries on the fly.
"Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me." (Philippians 4:11-13)
And one last thing: I would also add that it seems that people (even Christians) who go overboard with all of this stuff seem to forget that we all will die one day. We are so easily distracted from eternal things......looking for perfect health and/or long, physical life. Perhaps we should remember that our lives are but a vapor (James 4:14) and focus more on our glorified bodies that only union with Christ will bring (Philippians 3:20-21), though I am somewhat leery of even posting this comment, over concern that fellow Christians will say I am advocating mistreating our bodies, which I most assuredly am not. Fellow Christians, I am simply exhorting that we not make food - mere food - more important than it is. Let's not make food an idol.

For additional teaching on this from God's word, please see Colossians 2:16, Romans 14 and 1 Corinthians 8, 9 and 10.

(Please note that the post above was made by a former health food idolator and "natural" junkie. Please bear this in mind before the knives come out.....this is not an issue I've thought through carelessly or lightly. In fact, this article has been brewing in my brain for many months now. I have been researching, discussing, thinking about, and basically living out my ideas about food for more than 30 years now, beginning when I was 14 years old and used my own money to begin buying Health magazine. I know that food is a highly charged topic in the time we live in, and with that in mind, may we all endeavor, by God's grace, to always be submitting all of our ideas to the authority of God's Word.)

photo credit: moirabot via photopin cc

 Additional Resources 

Does the Root Word of "Pharmaceutical" (Pharmakeia/φαρμακεία) Mean That Pharmaceutical Drugs Are Rooted In the Occult/Sorcery? (Sola Sisters)

Alternative Medicine: A Mind Blowing Magical Mystery Tour  (Free, online e-book exposing the unsubstantiated claims [both currently and historically] made about many "natural" remedies)

Are We All Syncretists Now? A Conversation About Evangelical Christianity and Alternative Medicine with Historian Candy Gunther Brown (Dr. Al Mohler)

The Debate About GMO Safety is Over
 (Forbes Magazine)

The Whole Foods Movement and the Developing World

Wellness: The New Age Trojan Horse in Healthcare (Marcia Montenegro)

Update: Ingrid Schlueter Interviews Marcia Montenegro and Christine Pack (Crosstalk at VCY America 4/26/11) to Discuss The Wellness Article - you may listen here

Hospitals: A New Dark Age? (Marcia Montenegro)

Tapping: The Next Big Thing in Alternative Medicine (Sola Sisters)

No Scientific Evidence For "Chi" or "Qi"
 (NYU Langone Medical Center)

Problems with Alternative Medicine (Marcia Montenegro)

 Warnings About Homeopathy 

 Warnings About Alternative Treatments 

Alternative Medicine: A Mind Blowing Magical Mystery Tour
  (Online e-book exposing the unsubstantiated claims [both currently and historically] made about many "natural" remedies.....I highly recommend this eye-opening, FREE ebook)
The Truth About Nutritional Supplements (Fitness Magazine, 10-01-2009)

Safety and Regulation of Dietary Supplements (NPR radio interview, 7-16-2014)

Dietary And Herbal Supplements Could Interfere With Prescription Drugs (Medical News Today)

Herbal Supplements May Not Mix With Heart Medicines (Mayo Clinic)

5 Risky Herbal Supplements: Even Though They're Natural, Some Herbal Supplements Can Be Dangerous (Web MD)

Warning: Herbal Supplements Don't Always Go Well With Heart Drugs (U.S. News and World Report)

Severe liver damage from certain dietary aid supplements  (Examiner, links to archived New York Times article, 11-3-13)

 Warnings About Essential Oils 

The Christian and Essential Oils: A Few Thoughts [UPDATED] (Sola Sisters)

Essential Oils Revisited (Sola Sisters)

Aromatherapy: Biblical Path to Healing or Demonic Deception? (Chuck and Julie Cohen)

A Critique of David Stewart's Healing Oils of the Bible (Marcia Montenegro)

How To Use Essential Oils: A Step-By-Step Guide (satire, warning: some mild language)

 Warnings About Essential Oil Toxicity 

Essential Oil Safety: Documented Side Effects, Injuries, and Deaths from Essential Oil Ingestion (Hub Pages)

Eucalyptus Oil and Essential Oils Poisoning (The Royal Children's Hospital - Melbourne, AU)

Can Aromatherapy Oils Poison You? How Tiny Particles 'May Damage Liver and Kidneys' (Daily Mail, UK)

Hidden Dangers of Essential Oils: The Frightening Truth About Natural Remedies Such as Olbas Oil Which Can Cause Heart Problems, Convulsions and Eye Ulcers (Daily Mail, UK)

Danger for Cats: Essential Oils (Articulate Animals Blog)

Warning About Peppermint Oil Overdose (New York Times)

Shannon: Haddad and Winchester's Clinical Management of Poisoning and Drug Overdose, 4th ed.

Toxic Effects of Essential Oils - Addresses Oils Taken Orally and Externally (The Research Pedia)

 Sola Sisters Facebook Wall Threads - Essential Oils 

Sola Sisters Facebook wall - February 23, 2014
Sola Sisters Facebook wall - April 24, 2014
Sola Sisters Facebook wall -April 26, 2014
Sola Sisters Facebook wall - June 28, 2014 (general warning about essential oils) 
Sola Sisters Facebook wall - June 30, 2014 (critique of essential oils/YL by Chuck and Julie Cohen)
Sola Sisters Facebook wall - July 11, 2014 (should Christians partner with companies who market their products with unbiblical spiritual concepts?)
Sola Sisters Facebook wall - July 28, 2014 (discussion re: Sola Sisters' concerns about YL/alternative)

 John Ankerberg Resources and Articles 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Can't Be a Christian AND a Young Earth Scientist? Tell It To These Guys.

Posted by Christine Pack

I can't even begin to express how instrumental Answers in Genesis was in helping to form my biblical worldview. As a new Christian, I was still pretty evolutionary in my thinking. Then along came AIG.  I remember going through their LONG list of Young Earth scientists and just being amazed! And here's why: I had always been told and taught, from grade school all the way up through college, that science had "proved" evolution. Evolution was "fact." So, having had this life-long indoctrination, the first time I ever heard of "Young Earthers" as a new Christian, I immediately thought (okay, I'm just being honest here), "cult!" But then several years later, along came Answers in Genesis, and here were all these scientists, many of them with multiple and advanced degrees in the sciences.  In other words, it's not like these were guys with their PhDs in Literature or something, weighing in on subjects they hadn't studied. These were scientists who had studied Archaeology, Biology, Zoology, Geology, Physics, Chemistry, Palaeontology, etc., etc., and who, after studying the evidence, were saying, "It points to Young Earth, and here's why...." Bottom line: I just really like how these scientists, working alongside Answers in Genesis, have turned that condescending, worldly dismissal of the Young Earth view on its ear. There are no "village idiots" in this bunch, my friends. You can say a lot of things about this group of scientists, but one thing you can't say is that they're stupid. In fact, I believe that God is using the ministry of Answers in Genesis to respond to the mockers of this age:
"It is written: 'I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.' Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?" (1 Corinthians 1:19-20)
From the Answers in Genesis website:
 Can Creationists Be Real Scientists? 
Many secular and atheist groups mock Answers in Genesis and the Creation Museum for not being scientific. However, some of the most influential scientists past and present have been and are creationists (see below). 
Read our position 
See what others are saying 
 Some Modern Scientists Who Have Accepted the Biblical Account of Creation: 
■ Dr. William Arion, Biochemistry, Chemistry
■ Dr. Paul Ackerman, Psychologist
■ Dr. E. Theo Agard, Medical Physics
■ Dr. Steve Austin, Geologist
■ Dr. S.E. Aw, Biochemist
■ Dr. Thomas Barnes, Physicist
■ Dr. Geoff Barnard, Immunologist
■ Dr. John Baumgardner, Electrical Engineering, Space Physicist, Geophysicist, expert in supercomputer modeling of plate tectonics
■ Dr. Jerry Bergman, Psychologist
■ Dr. Kimberly Berrine, Microbiology & Immunology
■ Prof. Vladimir Betina, Microbiology, Biochemistry & Biology
■ Dr. Andrew Bosanquet, Biology, Microbiology
■ Edward A. Boudreaux, Theoretical Chemistry
■ Dr. David R. Boylan, Chemical Engineer
■ Prof. Linn E. Carothers, Associate Professor of Statistics
■ Dr. Rob Carter, Marine Biology
■ Prof. Sung-Do Cha, Physics
■ Dr. Eugene F. Chaffin, Professor of Physics
■ Dr. Choong-Kuk Chang, Genetic Engineering
■ Prof. Jeun-Sik Chang, Aeronautical Engineering
■ Dr. Donald Chittick, Physical Chemist
■ Prof. Chung-Il Cho, Biology Education
■ Dr. John M. Cimbala, Mechanical Engineering
■ Dr. Harold Coffin, Palaeontologist
■ Timothy C. Coppess, M.S., Environmental Scientist
■ Dr. Bob Compton, DVM
■ Dr. Ken Cumming, Biologist
■ Dr. Jack W. Cuozzo, Dentist
■ Dr. William M. Curtis III, Th.D., Th.M., M.S., Aeronautics & Nuclear Physics
■ Dr. Malcolm Cutchins, Aerospace Engineering
■ Dr. Lionel Dahmer, Analytical Chemist
■ Dr. Raymond V. Damadian, M.D., Pioneer of magnetic resonance imaging
■ Dr. Chris Darnbrough, Biochemist
■ Dr. Nancy M. Darrall, Botany
■ Dr. Bryan Dawson, Mathematics
■ Dr. Douglas Dean, Biological Chemistry
■ Prof. Stephen W. Deckard, Assistant Professor of Education
■ Dr. David A. DeWitt, Biology, Biochemistry, Neuroscience
■ Dr. Don DeYoung, Astronomy, atmospheric physics, M.Div
■ Dr. Geoff Downes, Creationist Plant Physiologist
■ Dr. Ted Driggers, Operations research
■ Robert H. Eckel, Medical Research
■ Dr. André Eggen, Geneticist
■ Dr. Dudley Eirich, Molecular Biologist
■ Prof. Dennis L. Englin, Professor of Geophysics
■ Dr. Andrew J. Fabich, Microbiology
■ Prof. Danny Faulkner, Astronomy
■ Prof. Carl B. Fliermans, Professor of Biology
■ Prof. Dwain L. Ford, Organic Chemistry
■ Dr. Kenneth W. Funk, Organic Chemistry
■ Prof. Robert H. Franks, Associate Professor of Biology
■ Dr. Alan Galbraith, Watershed Science
■ Dr. Paul Giem, Medical Research
■ Dr. Maciej Giertych, Geneticist
■ Dr. Duane Gish, Biochemist
■ Dr. Werner Gitt, Information Scientist
■ Dr. Warwick Glover, General Surgeon
■ Dr. D.B. Gower, Biochemistry
■ Dr. Robin Greer, Chemist, History
■ Dr. Stephen Grocott, Chemist
■ Dr. Vicki Hagerman, DMV
■ Dr. Donald Hamann, Food Scientist
■ Dr. Barry Harker, Philosopher
■ Dr. Charles W. Harrison, Applied Physicist, Electromagnetics
■ Dr. Mark Harwood, Engineering (satellite specialist)
■ Dr. George Hawke, Environmental Scientist
■ Dr. Margaret Helder, Science Editor, Botanist
■ Dr. Harold R. Henry, Engineer
■ Dr. Jonathan Henry, Astronomy
■ Dr. Joseph Henson, Entomologist
■ Dr. Robert A. Herrmann, Professor of Mathematics, US Naval Academy
■ Dr. Andrew Hodge, Head of the Cardiothoracic Surgical Service
■ Dr. Kelly Hollowell, Molecular and Cellular Pharmacologist
■ Dr. Ed Holroyd, III, Atmospheric Science
■ Dr. Bob Hosken, Biochemistry
■ Dr. George F. Howe, Botany
■ Dr. Neil Huber, Physical Anthropologist
■ Dr. James A. Huggins, Professor and Chair, Department of Biology
■ Evan Jamieson, Hydrometallurgy
■ George T. Javor, Biochemistry
■ Dr. Arthur Jones, Biology
■ Dr. Jonathan W. Jones, Plastic Surgeon
■ Dr. Raymond Jones, Agricultural Scientist
■ Prof. Leonid Korochkin, Molecular Biology
■ Dr. William F. Kane, (Civil) Geotechnical Engineering
■ Dr. Valery Karpounin, Mathematical Sciences, Logics, Formal Logics
■ Dr. Dean Kenyon, Biologist
■ Prof. Gi-Tai Kim, Biology
■ Prof. Harriet Kim, Biochemistry
■ Prof. Jong-Bai Kim, Biochemistry
■ Prof. Jung-Han Kim, Biochemistry
■ Prof. Jung-Wook Kim, Environmental Science
■ Prof. Kyoung-Rai Kim, Analytical Chemistry
■ Prof. Kyoung-Tai Kim, Genetic Engineering
■ Prof. Young-Gil Kim, Materials Science
■ Prof. Young In Kim, Engineering
■ Dr. John W. Klotz, Biologist
■ Dr. Vladimir F. Kondalenko, Cytology/Cell Pathology
■ Dr. Leonid Korochkin, M.D., Genetics, Molecular Biology, Neurobiology
■ Dr. John K.G. Kramer, Biochemistry
■ Dr. Johan Kruger, Zoology
■ Prof. Jin-Hyouk Kwon, Physics
■ Prof. Myung-Sang Kwon, Immunology
■ Dr. John G. Leslie, Biochemist, Physician, Archaeologist
■ Dr. Jason Lisle, Astrophysicist
■ Dr. Alan Love, Chemist
■ Dr. Ian Macreadie, molecular biologist and microbiologist:
■ Dr. John Marcus, Molecular Biologist
■ Dr. Ronald C. Marks, Associate Professor of Chemistry
■ Dr. George Marshall, Eye Disease Researcher
■ Dr. Ralph Matthews, Radiation Chemist
■ Dr. John McEwan, Chemist
■ Prof. Andy McIntosh, Combustion theory, aerodynamics
■ Dr. David Menton, Anatomist
■ Dr. Angela Meyer, Creationist Plant Physiologist
■ Dr. John Meyer, Physiologist
■ Dr. Albert Mills, Animal Embryologist/Reproductive Physiologist
■ Colin W. Mitchell, Geography
■ Dr. Tommy Mitchell, Physician
■ Dr. John N. Moore, Science Educator
■ Dr. John W. Moreland, Mechanical engineer and Dentist
■ Dr. Henry M. Morris (1918–2006), founder of the Institute for Creation Research.
■ Dr. Arlton C. Murray, Paleontologist
■ Dr. John D. Morris, Geologist
■ Dr. Len Morris, Physiologist
■ Dr. Graeme Mortimer, Geologist
■ Dr. Terry Mortenson, History of Geology
■ Stanley A. Mumma, Architectural Engineering
■ Prof. Hee-Choon No, Nuclear Engineering
■ Dr. Eric Norman, Biomedical researcher
■ Dr. David Oderberg, Philosopher
■ Prof. John Oller, Linguistics
■ Prof. Chris D. Osborne, Assistant Professor of Biology
■ Dr. John Osgood, Medical Practitioner
■ Dr. Charles Pallaghy, Botanist
■ Dr. Gary E. Parker, Biologist, Cognate in Geology (Paleontology)
■ Dr. David Pennington, Plastic Surgeon
■ Prof. Richard Porter
■ Dr. Georgia Purdom, Molecular Genetics
■ Dr. John Rankin, Cosmologist
■ Dr. A.S. Reece, M.D.
■ Prof. J. Rendle-Short, Pediatrics
■ Dr. Jung-Goo Roe, Biology
■ Dr. David Rosevear, Chemist
■ Dr. Ariel A. Roth, Biology
■ Dr. Joachim Scheven Palaeontologist:
■ Dr. Ian Scott, Educator
■ Dr. Saami Shaibani, Forensic physicist
■ Dr. Young-Gi Shim, Chemistry
■ Prof. Hyun-Kil Shin, Food Science
■ Dr. Mikhail Shulgin, Physics
■ Dr. Roger Simpson, Engineer
■ Dr. Harold Slusher, Geophysicist
■ Dr. E. Norbert Smith, Zoologist
■ George S. Smith, M.S., Chemistry
■ Dr. Andrew Snelling, Geologist
■ Prof. Man-Suk Song, Computer Science
■ Dr. Timothy G. Standish, Biology
■ Prof. James Stark, Assistant Professor of Science Education
■ Prof. Brian Stone, Engineer
■ Dr. Esther Su, Biochemistry
■ Dr. Charles Taylor, Linguistics
■ Dr. Stephen Taylor, Electrical Engineering
■ Dr. Ker C. Thomson, Geophysics
■ Dr. Michael Todhunter, Forest Genetics
■ Dr. Lyudmila Tonkonog, Chemistry/Biochemistry
■ Dr. Royal Truman, Organic Chemist:
■ Dr. Larry Vardiman, Atmospheric Science
■ Prof. Walter Veith, Zoologist
■ Dr. Joachim Vetter, Biologist
■ Dr. Stephen J. Vinay III, Chemical Engineering
■ Sir Cecil P. G. Wakeley (1892–1979) Surgeon
■ Dr. Jeremy Walter, Mechanical Engineer
■ Dr. Keith Wanser, Physicist
■ Dr. Noel Weeks, Ancient Historian (also has B.Sc. in Zoology)
■ Dr. A.J. Monty White, Chemistry/Gas Kinetics
■ Dr. John Whitmore, Geologist/Paleontologist
■ Arthur E. Wilder-Smith (1915–1995) Three science doctorates; a creation science pioneer
■ Dr. Clifford Wilson, Psycholinguist and archaeologist
■ Dr. Kurt Wise, Palaeontologist
■ Prof. Verna Wright, Rheumatologist (deceased 1997)
■ Prof. Seoung-Hoon Yang, Physics
■ Dr. Thomas (Tong Y.) Yi, Ph.D., Creationist Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering
■ Dr. Ick-Dong Yoo, Genetics
■ Dr. Sung-Hee Yoon, Biology
■ Dr. Patrick Young, Chemist and Materials Scientist
■ Prof. Keun Bae Yu, Geography
■ Dr. Henry Zuill, Biology 
 Is There Evidence of Discrimination Against Creation Scientists? 
Contemporary Suppression of the Theistic Worldview 
Do Creation Scientists Publish in Secular Journals?
Do Creationists Publish in Notable Refereed Journals?
Bias in Higher Education 
Peer Pressure and Truth
Revolutionary Atmospheric Invention by Victim of Anti-creationist Discrimination 
Science Magazine Refuses to Hire Creationist
(Online source)

 Additional Resources 

Answers in Genesis Curricula

Answers in Genesis for Kids

Answers in Genesis Articles Archive

The Creation Museum

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Former Sovereign Grace Ministries Founder Calls For Christian Leaders To Separate From CJ Mahaney Due To Class Action Sex Abuse Case

Posted by Christine Pack
Brent Detwiler, one of the Sovereign Grace Ministries founders, has called for prominent Christian leaders to separate from Sovereign Grace Ministries pastor C.J. Mahaney due to an ongoing sex abuse class action lawsuit that has been brought against Sovereign Grace Ministries. Mahaney, who is currently a member of the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals and The Gospel Coalition, is a well-known speaker at Christian conferences, and is scheduled to speak at the upcoming Gospel Coalition National Conference, scheduled for April 8-10 in Orlando, Fl.

Some of the leaders Detwiler has called upon  to separate from Mahaney are John Piper, Voddie Baucham, Mark Driscoll, Al Mohler, Mark Dever, Paige Patterson and Ed Stetzer.

 Janet Mefferd Interviews About the SGM Class Action Lawsuit 
 Additional Resources 

Former respected SGM youth leader Nathaniel Morales accused of abusing boys for decades in Montgomery Co. (ABC affiliate, WJLA) [UPDATE: Morales convicted]

Sovereign Grace Ministries and Abuse: Time to Speak Out (Patheos)

Lawsuit Claims Sovereign Grace Ministries Concealed Sex Abuse

Sovereign Grace Ministries: In Sex Abuse Case, Courts Shouldn't "Second Guess" SGM's Pastoral Counseling

Flagship Churches Prepare To Leave As Lawsuit Charges C.J. Mahaney's Sovereign Grace Ministries With Covering Up Child Sex Abuse

Copy of Lawsuit Filed Against Sovereign Grace Ministries

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Being Persistent In Prayer

Posted by Christine Pack

And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Give me justice against my adversary.’ For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, ‘Though I neither fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.’” And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them?  (Luke 18:1-7)

photo credit: SalFalko via photopin cc