Thursday, April 17, 2008


I recently posed the following question on a Christian discussion forum;

"Is it possible to be living TOTALLY according to God's will for your life and still be a sinner destined for hell?"

And received this reply:

How could one be "living TOTALLY according to GOD's will for their life" and wind up in Hell ?

I would agree with the sentiments of the person who responded to my question and I’d come up with come up with the same answer they obviously infer – it is impossible to live totally according to God’s will for your life and still be cast into hell.
Yet there is a very common theological viewpoint that presents just the opposite.
Maybe people are thinking I’m mistaken – surely there could be no such widespread doctrine in mainstream Christianity. Let me assure you that there is – it goes by the name of Calvinism.
According to this doctrine God personally predestined some to be saved, and others not to be saved. It is God’s will and God’s will alone that determines our eternal destiny. Therefore those who are condemned to hell are doomed entirely because they are following God’s chosen will and plan for their lives.

But what about sin? Surely they are condemned because of their sin? That is true – but WHY are they sinners? Did they really have any choice in the matter? Calvinism says no because all men are born in a totally depraved state that ensures they can do nothing but sin.
And why are they born into this state?
Because of Adam’s fall in the garden…

But wait, there’s more… According to Calvin, God Himself ordained that Adam should sin. Adam ALSO had no choice in the matter but was merely following God’s ordained plan for his life.

So here we have a doctrine that states that God Himself ordained man to be born into sin, that same God condemns sinners to hell and yet leaves the majority with no chance of being redeemed from that penalty of their sin. ALL because they are fulfilling God’s ordained will and purpose for their lives!

Now, I ask again. "Is it possible to be living TOTALLY according to God's will for your life and still be a sinner destined for hell?"
Calvin and his followers think so – though I’m sure they’d deny it. But that is EXACTLY what their doctrine is saying no matter how much they protest that this isn’t the case.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


Calvinism makes God the author of sin; he chose its existence when it did not exist. He becomes the most unholy being in the universe--the cause and source of all wickedness and misery. Adam did not fall, he was shoved, was not deceived by the devil, but by the bully God of Calvinism.

[FROM - The Mystery of Christ Revealed: The Key to Understanding Predestination
by George E. (Jed) Smock, Copyright 2000]

Thursday, April 10, 2008


The church today idolises the “anointed” Christian Superstar. These Superstars can be individual big name preachers, or they can be well known centres of “REVIVAL” or “REFRESHING”. Many Christians put a lot of faith in these Superstars and invest significant quantities of time and money in seeking the anointed ministry they offer.

I have to confess I was one of those seekers. I’d run from conference to conference; from speaker to speaker, and I’d buy as many of the tapes and books I could afford (I admit the “tapes” reference probably shows my age!). However, looking back with honesty, I can see that I never received what I was led to expect – because my expectations were misdirected. Not only was I being careless by running here and there to seek an imparted blessing from God, I was being disobedient!
It is now clear to me that chasing after “anointed” ministers, or groups that claim to be spreading “the anointing”, is the VERY thing that Jesus warned believers against in Matthew 24:23-26

Then if any man shall say to you, Lo, here is Christ! Or, There! Do not believe it.
For false Christs (anointed ones) and false prophets will arise and show great signs and wonders; so much so that, if it were possible, they would deceive even the elect. Behold, I have told you beforehand.
Therefore if they shall say to you, Behold, He is in the desert! Do not go out. Behold, He is in the secret rooms! Do not believe it.

Taking into account that the title “Christ” means anointed one, how many of these big name preachers are claiming to be specially anointed? So when we rush off to places because the anointed ones are there… we have ignored Jesus’ warning and we have opened ourselves to deception.

When we rush off to conferences to hear their imported “anointed” guest preachers (usually at a price of course) – or to any other place where “anointed” ministers are advertised we are disobeying Jesus’ SPECIFIC and clear warning and opening ourselves to deception. We don’t need to chase the anointing – in fact we are warned and commanded not to do so.
The term “anointing” is used in scripture ONLY to refer to the anointing of believers with the Holy Spirit (or a literal anointing with oil as a type of the Holy Spirit). There are NO alternative anointings in scripture and no anointings by any other name. I suggest great suspicion be shown when you hear of any specifically named anointing (for example “warrior anointing”). I can not see scripture supporting such a thing. The same goes for individuals who claim they have a special anointing not shared by others.

As Christians we are no less anointed than any other Christian no matter how famous or high profile they may be. If you are in Christ “the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as His anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true and no lie, and as He has taught you, abide in Him.” (1 Jn 2:27)
God’s anointing isn’t increased according to the level of celebrity someone attains, neither does it increase according to the amount of TV air time they have. We do not need to seek the “anointing” of other people. Instead we turn to the source of the “anointing” – our Heavenly Father, through the Lord Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008


Good preaching and teaching can often be very hard to find. The following sermons have been helpful to me.

The following are links to recommended sermons on the SERMONINDEX website

Art Katz – Holiness or Blessing This seems to date from the mid 1990s when the Toronto phenomenon had its highest public profile. Art Katz preached this message during a visit to Australia.

The following are part of a ten sermon series on the book of Revelation. All ten sermons can be heard on the sermonindex site. I recommend these two in particular because they cover potentially contentious issues with a calm and Bible based approach.

David Pawson – “Rapture” Mr Pawson gives a historical and scriptural overview of teaching on the future event known as “the rapture”.
David Pawson- Millennium This sermon follows the talk on the rapture in the 10 part series, and examines the scriptural evidence regarding the 1000 year reign of Christ mentioned in Revelation 20.