It’s been just over five years since my wife and I left Las Vegas and at least an additional four since I last saw the man I once held in high regard. His was the voice of reason and well measured thoughtfulness. His was one of the first voices I turned to after dragging myself home with a broken and repentant heart after years in the world’s pig pen. His was a voice to which I clung to every word, eagerly awaiting his next thought and wondering how it would tie in with his previous ones. His was a voice broken in the struggles of his earlier life and proclaiming the joy unspeakable in a new life in Christ.
But now—how could I imagine? How is it possible?
Now, his familiar voice was gone as he fled the light of God’s truth down the dark alley of deception. There in the increasing darkness of shadow echoed the voice of this man as it slithered and hissed its way from the earliest of days of innocence when the human race was but two—your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods.
This man who was once my pastor was gone! He was swept overboard and is drowning the tempest of his soul, turning against nearly everything he has ever taught. From proclaiming the truth of God’s Word to carrying Satan’s bucket, spewing forth ridiculous and heretical nonsense, and doing so with the same vigor he once had in the pulpit. His newfound revelation is nothing new at all, as ancient as the birth of sin itself, and the light of his newfound revelation is a completely different wavelength than God’s light.
Again I ask, how can this be?
It is not as if he had fallen into deception early in walk with God. He was a solid bible teacher. And yet, he finds himself on the other side of the moon spiritually speaking, embracing the twisted lies of the new age and eastern mysticism, denying the fundamentals of the cross or that people are born with a fallen nature. Jesus who he once held up in praise and adoration was no longer someone to worship, but someone to see as our equal, the firstborn of many brethren. My heart weeps when he writes that he regrets ever having told his children that they were born in sin and needed a Savior.
O, my Lord, how can this be?
I am deeply concerned for him and for the ramifications of his actions, not only regarding himself but the ripple effect on some of those close to his spiritual implosion.
But most of all, I am concerned for his very soul for he is a poster child in my small world of the end of the age apostasy. As he swims in the same cesspool of Rob Bell, Brian McLaren and other progressives of the emergent church I cannot help but reminded of the words in 1 John 2:19 knowing that this man whom I love as my former pastor has departed from us and it is highly probable that he was never truly of us in Christ.
He bears the mark of apostasy, declaring that we are all divine—all gods. He now denies the fallen state of man and eternal damnation for those who rejects Jesus Christ. He claims quite frankly that “I don’t believe Jesus wants to be worshiped as someone above us but that he came to reveal our equality with him.” Believing the same serpent lie that Eve did in the garden, his viewpoint of the world’s problems, all of the sin and wickedness will be properly addressed whenever everyone on earth begins to see and believe that we are all divine. When that happens we will be free from judging ourselves and judging others. He recently wrote, “I was a Christian for many years…raised a Catholic and later became a non-denomination pastor. I no longer identify myself as a Christian.”
Of course, central to his fundamental reversal is that he no longer holds the Word of God to be fully God-breathed and inerrant, believing instead that, “some scripture is from God and some is from man.”
These sobering words in 1 John 2:19 are made even more so with the words of the preceding verse where it states who “they” are—even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.
To think that this man whom I listened to preach again and again and again could one day turn his beliefs upside down, denying the sinful nature of fallen man and believing that we are all divine—well it would have been unthinkable just a short time ago. That he doesn’t think Jesus is to be worshiped but considered our equal—words cannot describe the pain I am experiencing and the fear that I have for this man’s eternal future.
He has become the closest and most personal example in my life—ringing the bells that the end of the age is at hand and the redemption of our Lord draws nigh.
My Lord, much of what I feel cannot be formulated into words and I am thankful for the intercession of the Holy Spirit in my prayer life. I lift up my former pastor and with a heart grieved I cry unto you and ask that the light of your truth would cut through the veil of darkness which has come over him. I thank you Lord that I have known him and that I have the privilege of petitioning you on his behalf. And I thank you Lord as the evidence of the world around us tells us plainly that the day of your return is soon. Maranatha!