Per Fidem Intrepidus means "Fearless Through Faith". My courage isn't my own, it comes from the Holy Spirit, it's my faith in God and my personal savior Christ Jesus that calms my fears and allows me to move forward in this fallen world. Personally I'm afraid of a lot of stuff, but having the faith that Jesus adopted me as his little, sin filled, brother keeps me going.

Monday, September 22, 2014

False Teacher Of The Year - 2014

You can tell it's September by the seasonal changes, the days grow shorter and cooler, the leaves start to change color, television promises a whole new season of the same old junk, and everything from ice cream to coffee is now pumpkin flavored. We send our kids off to school hoping and praying that they are going to get a good education, and for the most part they will. Teachers for the large part are caring, hard working people who really want each and every student to succeed but then there's the others, the ones parents have a right to fear, the teachers that show up with a personal agenda and will teach what they think is right, curriculum be damned. 

At one point in my college career I came to the realization that I am paying these people with my tuition, and I chose to hold them to the highest possible standards. Things came to a head when I had a history professor tell me that there were no bombers used in World War I. Wrong. I called him out on it and his defensive bluster finally boiled down to: how dare you, a mere student, question me "I WROTE A BOOK!" my response was "So did Hitler, what's your point?" (My final act of academic combat was when this teacher admitted he was a communist (big shock) I insured that my term paper to finish out the semester was "Russian Venona Papers Prove McCarthy Was Right")

The point is that you want your children to get the very best education possible because you love them, in the same way you want your fellow saints to get the very best spiritual guidance and education possible because you love them too, then you may have to roll up your sleeves to find a good teacher. You know to steer clear of cults and legalism and look for a church that teaches the Word of God pure and simple. And the most terrifying obstacle to salvation is the False Teacher, the person who sounds so knowledgeable and trustworthy but is straying from God's word in such a way that the goats are looking forward to following him into hell. These people are very good at what they do, so good that you can barely hear the serpent hissing in the background ""Did God really say, 'You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?" (Genesis 3:1)

We are warned quite often in the bible about false teachers, Matthew 7:15, Deuteronomy 13:1-5, Isaiah 30:9-14, 2 John 1:7, Romans 16:17-18, 1 Timothy 4:1-2... the entire second chapter of 2 Peter is nothing but a warning against false teachers:
18 For speaking out arrogant words of vanity they entice by fleshly desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error, 19 promising them freedom while they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved. 20 For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. 21 For it would be better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment handed on to them. 22 Of them the proverbs are true: “A dog returns to its vomit,” and, “A sow that is washed returns to her wallowing in the mud.”  (2 Peter 2:18-21)
When I handed out the first False Teacher Of The Year award last year I had a lot of questions thrown at me (like How Dare You?!?) to which my response is "How dare you not expose false teachers?" We need to be skeptical (Acts 17:11, 1 John 4:1)  and show them for what they are 
11 Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; 12 for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light. 14 For this reason it says, Awake, sleeper, And arise from the dead, And Christ will shine on you.” (Ephesians 5:11-14) 
 So, without further ado...

Attention To Orders (Romans 16:17-18)

For causing dissensions and hindrances contrary to the teaching which we have learned from God's Holy Word, for being a slave not of our Lord Christ but of his own worldly appetites, and by his smooth and flattering speech he uses to deceive the hearts of the unsuspecting by twisting and denying the Good News of God's holy Word we hereby announce that the False Teacher of the Year is Steven McSwain, self proclaimed Author, Leadership Coach, Counsel to Non-Profits, Faith-based Organizations and Congregations, Adjunct Professor of Communication at the University of Kentucky, Spiritual Teacher, Inspirational and Motivational Speaker. Pretty much your average fund raising, money grabbing, scripture denying, ecumenical, pantheistic, emergent, self-help guru.
See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ. (Colossians 2:8)
If you ever have a hankering for being held hostage to philosophy and empty deception, all you need to do is go to the Huffington Post and read some of the articles that are published by Dr. Steve McSwain. Dr. McSwain is promoted as "the voice for the Spiritual But Not Religious" Self-described as a former minister with Baptist influence, Dr. McSwain says he “didn't receive his spiritual awakening until he quit going to church.” but when speaking of church he also claims that "I have chosen to remain." so we immediately know that Dr. McSwain is going to have it both ways regardless of what he's talking about.

He markets himself as "a trusted guide, transformational leader, and a spiritual teacher" and claims to have been a Christian minister for 20 years in some of the largest churches in America (but no where in his vast plethora of on-line biographies does he identify a single one of these these churches). He calls himself a "Christian Atheist" which, linguistically, spiritually, and intellectually the same as calling yourself a fish with severe aquagenic urticaria.

In Colossians 2:8 when Paul says "takes you captive" he is saying "let no one haul you off as a spoil
of war, booty, a slave. The word used is sylagōgeō and it's used used both as a verb (to carry away booty) and a noun (a slave) and this is the only time it is used in the bible. He's saying "don't let anyone steal you as a prize using worldly knowledge and empty lies of the world instead of following Christ." And isn't that what Satan is all about? Stealing souls from Jesus?

Dr. McSwain is just that thief who comes to steal and kill and destroy (John 10:10), his forte is to deny the very word of God and the deity of Christ, to drive a sugar coated wedge between the follower and God. He denies the ever-lasting life Christ Jesus promised His flock, he denies the existence of heaven and he denies the fires of Hell Christ Jesus has planned for Satan, he even denies Satan.
Here's what I'm thinking: You only really need a "heaven" because you know it not now. Yet, Jesus said, "I have come that you might have life.." Hm. That's sounds awfully like now. Furthermore, you only ever need a "hell" because you want someone to suffer in the next life since they lived like a******s in this one and did pretty well. Or so it appears. - Dr. McSwain
See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven continually see the face of My Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 18;10)
Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew 10:28)
The biggest problem with Dr. McSwain is that to him the bible is a two sided sword. He clubs you over the head with a verse that he has taken out of context (just as he did in the quote above) which to the undiscerning seems correct. Like all atheists he LOVES to throw Matthew 7:1 into your face when you refute or dispute his words, but when you use a verse in context to refute his statement his retort comes from straight from Satan's lips:
"Christians need to stop saying that the Bible is the inerrant, infallible Word of God."
Dr. McSwain believes the bible is not the inerrant, infallible Word of God solely because he doesn't believe that the Bible is the inerrant, infallible word of God. He needs no proof to back up his assertations,  He doesn't have an original manuscript to refer to, and even if he did it would be wrong (he's actually said that), he claims that the bible is full of errors (yet he has yet to publicly address one). McSwain goes on (and on and on and on...) about the mustard seed of faith but displays none with it comes to the bible.

I don't want to accuse Dr. McSwain of lying, but it appears to me that either Dr. McSwain intentionally lies about scripture, or he just doesn't know scripture. Check out this quote from an article this year (emphasis is all mine):
"You are not separate from God. You did not inherit some faulty gene that, while dormant in your infancy years, has come to life at some mythical "age of accountability." Which, by the way, my friend, is nowhere in scripture. This notion of "inherited" sin or "original sin," or "age of accountability," -- these are all just theological constructs created by religious thinkers down through the centuries and, for all the good you may wish to believe they have done, the damage is manifestly worse, and will likely take centuries to heal. They have no basis whatsoever in any of Jesus' teachings. I challenge anyone to prove differently."
Challenge accepted.
But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, And your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear. (Isaiah 59:2)
As for Jesus, we know he taught that scripture was the word of God and He taught from it quite often, especially Isaiah, which pretty much puts Dr. McSwain's theory of the illegitimacy of scripture to rest. One wonders where Dr, McSwain gets his ideas from. If you listen to him you would get the impression that the church fathers who have studied God's word, along with each other findings, and hundreds of thousands of men of God through the ages have been completely wrong but Dr. McSwain suddenly has the truth in his hand. I can only speculate where he gets that idea from. If Dr. McSwain was correct in his theory of sin, Jesus wouldn't have mentioned sin, right?
Jesus answered them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. (John 8:34)
20 And He was saying, That which proceeds out of the man, that is what defiles the man. 21 For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, 22 deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. 23 All these evil things proceed from within and defile the man.” (Mark 7:20-23)
Oh, I hate when that happens.

Let's look at one of the most important verses in the bible:
Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. (John 14:6)
Dr. McSwain's take on this verse is
"Again, it’s your right to “believe” or, more accurately, interpret Scripture as you wish. You do not, however, have permission to arrogantly assume your way of interpreting the words of Jesus are the only way to understand His words. Last I checked, no one’s interpretation of anything is infallible. Not yours. Not mine."
What Dr. McSwain is saying is that for 2000 years men have been stupid and misinterpreted this verse, only he knows the truth, He doesn't have a better interpretation, he just knows we're wrong because the interpretation of bible believing people doesn't match the McSwain concept of salvation. So you might ask, what is Salvation in the McSwain mind?
"It is, among other things freedom from the prison of one's mind. Freedom from the defilement of one's life by what goes on inside the head according to Jesus"
And what did Jesus say about salvation? Mostly things like
Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. (John 3:5)    
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 7:21)
According to Jesus salvation is entering the kingdom of God and living eternally with Him, yet Dr. McSwain falsely whispers that salvation is merely freedom from worry and nothing more. He goes on to say "Pay attention to your body. Listen to your body. It is one of the portals into the Divine Presence"  Where in scripture does Jesus say "Listen to your body"? Dr. McSwain goes on to say "Separating yourself from your thoughts is a process that will take a lifetime to perfect. Which is why Saint Paul said, “Think on these things” (Phil. 4). Which is also why Jesus said, “…out of the mouth, the heart speaks”"

Here is one of the most obvious signs of a false teacher; using a partial verse to shore up an idea that has nothing to do with that verse. His first allusion to Philippians 4 is verse 8. Paul here is not talking about seperating yourself from your thoughts, in fact it means quite the opposite, to concentrate on good and avoid evil and not to separate yourself from those thought but put what you learned into practice.
8 Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. 9 The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. (Philippians 4:8-9)
And the other verse he used, he identified as Luke 6:45. I'm still not sure why he quoted 1/8th of that verse, I think he was trying to say that the mind is evil and the heart is good, which is why he tells his acolytes to separate themselves from their thoughts. Jesus on the other hand said something quite different in Luke 6:45
The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart. (Luke 6:45)
In his column on how to find God, McSwain quotes from one of his favorite Psalms
As a shattering of my bones, my adversaries revile me, While they say to me all day long, "Where is your God?"(Psalms 42:10)
Wait. What? That's can't be right... no, that's exactly what he says, Psalms 42:10. I'm pretty sure that the "theologian" Dr. McSwain meant psalm 46:10, he says he likes it because one word in Hebrew, raphah,  is translated to "be still" in English. McSwain says it means Let go, relax, release control. Well, sort of, in context it means let drop, be disheartened, sink down, give up. (And he knows that, but it doesn't fit the heresy to follow) McSwain says it means to stop trying to find God because God is in everyone. This is the same heresy that Oprah Winfrey peddles, that Rob Bell wants to drag you to hell with, that pagan religions use to lead people further and further from God. Pantheism. Maybe if Dr. McSwain bothered to read Psalm 46:10 in context he wouldn't have ridiculously tried to use it to justify his new age emergent church God is You, God is Me Barney the dinosaur heresy:

Come, behold the works of the Lord, who has wrought desolations in the earth. He makes wars to cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariots with fire. 10 Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” 11 The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our stronghold.(Psalm 46:8-11)
 The more you read of this man's writings the worse it gets. His explanation for Jesus crucifixion:
"Jesus did not die for your sins, let that be said a thousand times. Jesus did not come from God to rescue fallen, sinful, inadequate, incompetent people like you and me...that is an idea from which we need to escape. 
McSwain doesn't offer an explanation, he just says "Everything you know is wrong, trust me, I know" Like everything else, even his description of Christs death on the cross is wrong, misleading, designed to raise doubts in the minds and hears, and if you're very quiet you can hear the serpent hissing "Did God really say....?"

So for your heresy and false teaching, Steven McSwain, we present to you the Golden Goat award. As you continue to lead your clueless goats on the wide path to destruction with a song in your heart and joy in your soul knowing that rather than God, you are truly serving your master; a devil you claim you do not believe in. We pray that some day you realize that the book you so casually disdain truly is the word of God and come to truly know him and repent from your heretical ways.

It is, among other things, freedom from the prison of one’s mind. Freedom from the defilement of one’s life by what goes on inside the head, according to Jesus. - See more at: http://www.stevemcswain.com/what-is-salvation-enlightenment-awakening-learning-to-let-go/#sthash.Ry3nzQTn.dpuf
It is, among other things, freedom from the prison of one’s mind. Freedom from the defilement of one’s life by what goes on inside the head, according to Jesus. - See more at: http://www.stevemcswain.com/what-is-salvation-enlightenment-awakening-learning-to-let-go/#sthash.Ry3nzQTn.dpuf
It is, among other things, freedom from the prison of one’s mind. Freedom from the defilement of one’s life by what goes on inside the head, according to Jesus. - See more at: http://www.stevemcswain.com/what-is-salvation-enlightenment-awakening-learning-to-let-go/#sthash.Ry3nzQTn.dpuf
It is, among other things, freedom from the prison of one’s mind. Freedom from the defilement of one’s life by what goes on inside the head, according to Jesus. - See more at: http://www.stevemcswain.com/what-is-salvation-enlightenment-awakening-learning-to-let-go/#sthash.Ry3nzQTn.dpuf

1 comment:

  1. ". Jesus did not die for your sins, let that be said a thousand times. Jesus did not come from God to rescue fallen, sinful, inadequate, incompetent people like you and me...that is an idea from which we need to escape." In which case I would announce, get behind me Satan! But I would think anybody who halfway uses their own mind to think might ask the question, why exactly do we need to get that thought out of our heads? Is there some reason for you telling us that we need to deny the forgiveness of sins by the crucifixion of Jesus? just as the Devil Himself seeks to do?