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Modern Denominational Myths

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Modern Denominational Myths

By

Marvin D. Schrebe

1208 Latrobe Street

Parkersburg WV 26101-4522

(304) 917-9782

23,336 words

40 pages

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table of Contents

 

Preface 3

 

Eschatological Beliefs 7

 

The Sinner’s Prayer 10

 

Myths about Worship 15

 

Myths about God’s Holy Spirit 22

 

Holiday Myths 27

 

Modern Myths about Satan 30

 

Modern Myths about Leadership 34

 

Full Gospel 38

 

Modern Myths about Baptism 40

 

Epilogue 42

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Preface

 

There are many myths circulating as Biblical truth today. The purpose of this writing is to examine some of these myths and find out what the real truth is. The sad thing is that even at this point, where I have barely begun the task of sorting out truth from fiction, I know that most of those who will read past the first line probably already know most of what I’m going to address. The rest are dead set in their beliefs and want to shake their fist at anybody who would dare muddy up their delusions by inserting some truth! This is in large part due to that most common of human failings, the sin of pride. Many are too proud to admit the possibility that the father of liars has duped them. They are too proud to admit for even one moment that everything they have believed in has been a sham. I was just told by a very sincere man the other night that if you can feel the Spirit move you in a place, then the preacher there is preaching the truth. I told him that I wished him all the luck in the world with that belief. I truly do wish him such luck. However I believe that my Christian experience should not and does not depend on the whims of my feelings. The word of God being preached or not has nothing to do with feelings. The word of God has to do with facts! If I never have a good feeling in a church, but the message I hear consistently from the pulpit is confirmed by God’s word, then I am in the right place! All too often we want a “feel good” Christianity. We go to church thinking the preacher should make us feel good. We go to believing that good singing and a praise and worship team should entertain us. We go thinking the preacher should stroke our egos and tickle our ears. In other words we go for all the wrong reasons! We fail to realize that if the worship is pleasing to God, it makes no difference if we find it pleasing or not. We fail to realize that the preacher is not there to stroke our egos and tell us how good we are. The preacher is there to preach the word of God! The service is not meant to be ascetically pleasing to us. It isn’t about us! We are servants and we have been entrusted with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Our job is not to become overwhelmed with emotion and act like total fools. Our job is to worship and serve Jesus Christ in all things and in all ways!

So many times I have heard people say that the body of believers they attend is up to them. They act as if going to church is like walking into a restaurant and choosing something off the menu. This made to order worship mentality has to go! Is it any wonder that we have over 2,000 denominations and sets of beliefs in modern Christianity? The Apostle Paul made it very clear that this was not to be so! He told the church at Corinth “Now I plead with you brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment” 1 Corinthians 1: 10.

How can anybody possibly claim that what we have today is anything aside from division and chaos? Is it any wonder the world is so down on Christianity? If we can’t even agree among ourselves about the simple truths of the scriptures, then how do we expect to have any impact on the world? The world looks at Christianity as a joke. Why shouldn’t they? All they have to do is go into most cities and they will find two things on nearly every street. They will find a church wearing it’s own name above the door and more than likely they will find a tavern. Christianity doesn’t stand a chance of being effective as long as we continue to practice mass confusion. Sinners look at us and they have no idea who to believe. If Paul clearly taught us to be of one mind and to teach the same thing, then obviously there are many in the modern Christian world that are not teaching the whole truth! Sinners aren’t morons. They know that a half-truth or a statement that is even 1/10 of one percent false is still a lie! So what if the lie a body of believers teaches only has to do with the way that body of believers is governed? A lie is still a lie and any body that teaches so much as one thing that is false, whether they intend to or not, is still lying! How are sinners to know whom they can trust? Obviously they would have to go to every preacher in the world and spend years being taught by that each of them to be able to eventually sort out the truth! Many simply throw their hands into the air and walk away at this prospect. Others do what many do. They choose whatever feels right to them. I remember when I was a child. We lived in some places where the roads were really bad. In the winter the roads would be full of frozen ruts that would nearly swallow the vehicle. How many times I have heard my dad say “You simply grab a rut and go.”

For many modern Christianity is this way. They simply grab the first rut they come too and they attend church there because they have no way of sorting out which church is teaching the whole gospel and nothing but the whole gospel and which one is teaching some falsehood. There are currently over two hundred mainstream denominations and over 2,000 different named belief systems. If the inspired Apostle Paul says that we should all teach the same thing and believe the same thing, then it stands to reason that 1,999 of these systems are teaching something that isn’t true! As we determined already, any system that does not teach 100% truth is in fact teaching 100% falsehood. There is no such thing as a partial truth. It ‘s either a fact or it’s a lie. There is no middle ground, no gray area. It’s either true or it’s false. Thus we can safely assume that we have one chance in two thousand that the church we attend is teaching what God wants taught! Does this mean that the leaders of these organizations are intentionally misleading people? No! It does not! The leaders of these organizations are usually very sincere, well-meaning people. However they are sincerely mistaken themselves! Jesus predicted that such people would come along as did every preacher who preached after Him. We find Jesus’ remarks about this in Matthew 7: 15-24. This section is part of what is commonly referred to as the Sermon on the Mount. Let us look at it piece by piece and then summarize it as a whole.

Beginning in Matthew 7: 15 we read “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles? Even so every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits will you know them.”

There are those who would have us believe that Jesus is telling us that we will know these false prophets because they will intentionally lie, cheat, and swindle. This is far from true. Jesus is really telling us that we will know these false prophets if the things they teach cannot be found in the word of God. Sure they may sound prim and proper and the sermons they preach each week may be based 100% on the word of God. However if they so much as preach for an organization or denomination if you will, that teaches even one slight detail that does not line up with God’s word, then they are a false prophet! Jesus said we would know them by their fruits. What He meant by this is that at some point along the line, something they teach will not line up with the word. Maybe they are the best orators on the planet. Maybe they can preach one hundred percent truth for years but if they so much as adhere to a false belief, whether they teach that belief or not, they are false prophets! Many want to believe that their preacher is teaching one hundred percent truth. After all these preachers are often our friends and relatives. Besides we feel that they are indeed devout people leading pious lives. Sometimes we may expect to see them walking on water any day they are so spiritual. Besides we feel confident in what they say. After all did they not attend undergraduate and often graduate school to become experts in their fields? Anybody with that much education and who lives such an apparently godly life has to be telling the truth, right? No! They may indeed live godly lives but this does not mean they still cannot be deceived and mistaken in what they teach. Satan is not going to use just anybody to spread his lies. The people he most often uses are the ones we suspect the least! Paul tells us “ But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast. For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works” II Corinthians 11: 12 – 15.

So we see then that it is no great thing for a minister to be a deceiver and an emissary of Satan. Do these individuals know they are emissaries of Satan? In some cases they do. However in most cases they are sincere people who are extremely loving, caring, and would not intentionally mislead anybody. They honestly do care about the destiny of human souls and do what they have been taught is right in carrying the gospel to the lost. The problem is that sincerity isn’t enough. One can be sincerely zealous and still be sincerely wrong! What happens when one falls into this category? Again we find the answer in the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 7: 21-23. Jesus said “Not everyone who says to me ‘Lord, Lord’ shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in Heaven. Many will say to Me in that day ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied (preached) in your name, cast out demons in your name, and done many wonders in your name?’ And then I will declare to them ‘I never knew you; depart from Me you who practice lawlessness!”

Anybody with an IQ over ten can clearly see that Jesus is speaking of people who sincerely believe they are saved and who spend a great deal of their lives doing what they think is the will of God. Notice that I bracketed the word preached behind the word prophesied. I did this because a preacher in those days was a prophet! Therefore the words prophesied and preached are often used interchangeably in scripture. We think of prophets as foretelling the future because this was often the function of Old Testament prophets. However in the New Testament, prophets were primarily preachers. It is for this reason that the Apostle Paul told the church at Corinth to allow those with the gift of prophecy to speak more often than those with the gift of tongues, I Corinthians 14: 5.

Some will contend that when Jesus made this statement about many being deceived, He was merely stating that there would be cult leaders come into the church and lead many astray. While this is indeed one application, it is not the case. Jesus was clearly telling us that sincere people would come along, whom for all appearances are secure in their faith and secure in their salvation. They would do all the right things and look and act like Christians. They will sincerely believe in their hearts that they are saved and their actions and deeds would support this belief. These people are not the whackos who operate cults and lead their followers to commit suicide. These are sincere people who honestly believe in their hearts that they are saved. They appear to well balanced people who do many great and wonderful things in the name of the Master. They may even perform outright miracles. They may have control over demons. They will do many wonderful things. Yet when it comes right down to it, they not only are not saved, but they were in fact never saved. Jesus will say to them “I never knew you.”

He isn’t going to say to them “Get away from Me you backsliders!”

No, he is going to say that He never knew them. This clearly implies that they believed a lie and believed it strongly enough to devote everything they had to it. However their sincerity will not save them! Why? Their sincerity will not save them because they chose to believe a lie rather than believe the truth of God’s word. Paul tells us “And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness”, II Thessalonians 2: 11 – 12.

Some would contend that this applies only to those who never believed to begin with. It doesn’t say that. It says that it applies to those who took pleasure in unrighteousness. What is choosing to believe a false doctrine if it isn’t taking pleasure in unrighteousness? Don’t try to mince words with God’s Holy Spirit? Don’t try to read something into the scriptures that isn’t there! In so doing many have sealed their doom. Simply accept God’s word for what it says. Seek out the truth. Jesus says that if we seek the truth we’ll find it. He tells us in John “ And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free”, John 8: 32.

Won’t you learn the truth today? At the very least put aside all of your preconceived notions and study the remainder of this book with an open heart and open mind? Sure it is hard to accept that many around us are deceived and heading for eternal damnation. It’s hard to accept any notion that the things we have been taught all of our lives, and the things many in our family entered eternity believing may not be true. This is hard for anybody to accept. It’s understandable that we want to revert back to what is familiar. All I am asking is that you, the reader, finish this book and search the scriptures to see if the things I am telling you are so. If, when you have finished, you choose to reject what you have read, in whole or in part, then depart and go your way. However if you choose to accept what you have as read as true, then I challenge you to have the gumption to say so, repent of your wrong beliefs, and correct the error of your ways. Doing so is not easy. I personally had to study for many years, examining everything I had ever been taught with an open mind and open heart. In the end I found that what I had discovered often put me at odds with loved ones and preachers. However truth is truth and falsehoods are falsehoods. God bless you as you set out on a journey of discovery that may well open your eyes and save your soul.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eschatological Beliefs

 

The above fifty-dollar word basically refers to beliefs surrounding the second coming of Christ. There are many false doctrines circulating as Biblical truth in this are. One of the most popular beliefs is that Jesus is going to return in the clouds and secretly whisk away all believers. Those who teach this rapture” doctrine strongly believe it. I was having a conversation with a friend of mine who believes in this recently. He began the conversation by saying that a day was coming when one person would be taken and another person would be left behind. He based this assumption on a misapplication of Matthew 24: 40-41 which says “Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left.”

His belief is that Jesus was discussing the end of the Christian era in this passage. He was not. What He was discussing is the siege of Jerusalem, which occurred in 70AD under the leadership of General Titus. Jesus makes this clear when He states that a time of great tribulation will befall them and that many Christians who were then alive, would see these things come to pass. We read “Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place”, Matthew 24: 34.

I can’t speak for you, but I know that I personally have never met any individual older than 100. If Jesus words were true and I believe they are, and if the belief that Jesus is talking about the end of the world is also true, then there should be a lot of people running around who are over 2,000 years old! Since there aren’t any 2,000-year-old people running or walking around, I believe it is safe to assume that Jesus was talking about an event that would take place within the lifetimes of those who were in His presence when He spoke these words.

History tells us that Christians of the first century clearly understood what He meant because every Christian in Jerusalem fled to safety when they saw the Roman standards approach Jerusalem prior to the siege that ended in 70AD with the destruction of Jerusalem! Every Christian escaped and the Romans killed not one Christian, yet thousands of Jews were crucified. In fact history cites that the Romans were searching high and low for timbers with which to make crosses because they had used all the timber available for those who were dying. Christians however had heeded the warning of Jesus and left the city when they saw the Romans approach. Therefore they all survived the siege. The proponents of the end times theory want to use Matthew 24: 40 – 41 as proof text of their position but their theory holds no water. Yes, the prophecy was fulfilled in that every other person was summarily killed and thus was taken, but it was the Roman legions that did the taking. The Romans were so ruthless in fact that surrender wasn’t an option. The Jews who willingly surrendered and threw themselves onto the mercy of the Romans were crucified on the spot. There was no escape for them. Therefore the prophecy that one would be taken and one left was fulfilled by the Roman legions. Soon after the siege began the Romans began rounding up Jews for summary execution. Basically they took every other one. Does this sound familiar? It sounds a whole lot like fulfillment of Matthew 24: 40 – 41 to me!

Another scripture strongly relied upon by proponents of the rapture doctrine is I Thessalonians 4: 16 – 17. It says “For the Lord Himself will descend from Heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.”

The proponents of the rapture doctrine base their conclusions on a mistranslation found in the King James Bible. The translators of the King James Bible relied heavily on the Latin Vulgate Bible for their translations. Therefore the word they translated as rapture was based on the Latin word “rapturo” which essentially means “caught up”. Since the King James translators had no sufficient English word to replace the Latin word they basically created an English word to describe it. That word was “rapture”. However the Greek word, which was used here, did not mean “caught up”. It was the Greek word “harpazo” which basically meant “to meet”. It was the custom of the city officials of the first century to form a welcome party and go out of the city several miles to greet any incoming dignitaries. The word “harpazo is the Greek word used for this practice. When the Latin Vulgate was translated many centuries later, this practice was no longer used. Thus there was really no acceptable standard for the translators to use in finding a meaning for “harpazo”. Therefore the best they could do was use a Latin word, which they felt translated it. The chosen word was “rapturo”. Now all these centuries later this mistranslation is still wreaking havoc. Now however, it has become a major false doctrine which leads many to believe that if they live long enough to witness the rapture, they will have proof of the existence of God and a second chance to get their ducks in a row. Too bad there’s absolutely no proof of this and absolutely no truth in it.

First of all Paul says nothing in I Thessalonians 4: 16 – 17 about any secret coming of Jesus. In fact he makes it pretty obvious that the second coming will be anything but secret. Who ever heard of anybody trying to do something secretly while shouting with a voice louder than the loudest thunderclap and sounding a trumpet louder than any trumpet ever created by man? The last time I heard a clap of thunder it was extremely loud. In fact as I recall my house shook several times when it thundered. Then as well the last time I heard a trumpet it could be heard clearly at considerable distances! So how anybody can read into this passage that it’s going to be a secret event is beyond me! It seems to me that if Jesus was truly going to sneak the Christians out of here without the world knowing, He would do so quietly. I mean you would assume that an all-knowing God would have sense enough not to shout with the voice of an archangel and the trumpet of God if He was trying to do something secretly! No! The fact is that when Jesus does return He will be taking the entire world with Him.

Matthew 13 is the chapter in which Jesus gives us the parable of the wheat and the weeds. Some translations call this the parable of the wheat and the tares. In this parable, starting in Matthew 13: 24 this parable says that a farmer went out to sow seed. After the seed was sown an enemy came along and sowed weeds among the seed. The workers asked the farmer if he wanted them to pull up the weeds. Since the farmer knew that pulling up the weeds would also pull up the wheat he instructed them to let both grow together until the harvest. Then when the crop was ready to harvest the workers would gather the weeds and burn them. Then they would store the wheat in his barns.

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Modern Denominational Myths

There are many myths circulating as Biblical truths today. Many of these false doctrines are regularly taught and believed by mainstream denominations. This book explores these false doctrines and exposes them for what they are.

  • ISBN: 9781310930614
  • Author: Marvin Schrebe
  • Published: 2016-01-02 20:50:06
  • Words: 24639
Modern Denominational Myths Modern Denominational Myths