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NEW-EVANGELICALISM IS NOT BIBLE CHRISTIANITY!

by Dr. Christopher L. Cagan

A sermon preached at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Saturday Evening, October 5, 2019

“For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things” (Philippians 3:18, 19; p. 1260 Scofield).


These verses describe the antinomian, lawless people of Paul’s day. These verses describe the new-evangelicals of our day. They are “the enemies of the cross of Christ.” Their God is their belly – satisfying the desires of the flesh. They “mind earthly things” – they care about the things of this life and this world.

Bible Christians are in confrontation with the world. We live in this world, but we don’t belong to it. Bible Christians are not like the world. But new-evangelicals are not the same as Bible Christians. They accommodate to the world. That means they bend to be like the world. They get along fine with the lost world. They fit right into it. Bible Christians don’t fit in with the world, but they do!

New-evangelicalism began in 1948 with a speech by a man named Harold John Ockenga. He said that Christians should not separate from the world. Instead, Christians should get involved with the world and “infiltrate” it. They should blend in and somehow influence the world and even take it over. There’s only one problem – it wasn’t true and it didn’t work!

From the compromises of Billy Graham to the Bible-denying Fuller Theological Seminary, new-evangelicals did not change the world. Instead, the world changed them! Today tens of millions of people claim to be Christians, but very few of them are. The churches are much weaker, and many of them are closing. There is little or no difference between the so-called “Christians” and the world. The “Christians” are the same as people in the world. They do the same sins. They live the same lives. New-evangelicalism has failed.

Most evangelical, charismatic and Pentecostal churches in America are new-evangelical. That goes for Baptist churches as well. Just because a church has “Baptist” in its name doesn’t mean it’s good. Most all of them are new-evangelical – including the church of the apostate Chan.

Some new-evangelicals are saved. Most of them are lost. New-evangelicalism is far different from Bible Christianity. Run from new-evangelicalism! It has nothing for you. It’s no good. Listen as I bring out some points. They will show you the difference between Bible Christianity and the new-evangelicals. It will show you there’s a big gap between the two, and you can decide which side to be on.

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I. First, their view of the Bible.

For Bible Christians, the Bible is the Word of God, to be studied and obeyed. Jesus said, “Thy word is truth” (John 17:17; p. 1139). We take it strictly and seriously.

For new-evangelicals, the Bible is an inspirational book. It’s not important whether the Bible is historically or scientifically true. What’s important is that it gives you a “lift” when you read it. That’s how they treat the Bible. They do that, but we will serve the Lord!

II. Second, their view of God.

This is a big one! The true God of the Bible is a “great and terrible God” (Nehemiah 1:5; p. 541). He is “angry with the wicked every day” (Psalm 7:11; p. 602). He will “by no means clear the guilty” (Exodus 34:7; p. 116).

New-evangelicals reject the real God. For them, God is soft and loving and that’s all. They quote Bible verses about God’s love, but none about His wrath. One Sunday I visited Lake Avenue Congregational Church, the mother church of new-evangelicalism. There I heard a woman sing, “I’ve heard a thousand times what they [Bible Christians] say you are, but you came to me in the night with a whisper of love.” That’s her god, but it’s not the God of the Bible! They say, “God accepts you just the way you are.” Yes, God does love you, but He will punish you in Hell the way you are. You must turn from sin to Christ and be saved by Jesus’ Blood!

III. Third, their view of election.

The Bible says, “Many are called, but few are chosen” (Matthew 22:14; p. 1030). That’s election. Election is a doctrine of Calvinism. But new-evangelicals are practical Arminians. They act like everyone who prays a sinner’s prayer, or everyone they know in their church, is saved. They do that, but we will serve the Lord!

IV. Fourth, their view of man.

The Bible says that man is totally depraved, “under sin” (Romans 3:9; p. 1194). He cannot save himself. The Bible says, “They that are in the flesh cannot please God” (Romans 8:8; p. 1201). Man can’t do anything to please God, or help himself to be saved. Man can only be saved by the miracle of Christ on the Cross. Man does nothing. God does everything. That’s called “monergism.”

New-evangelicals may say we need Jesus. But they think of man in a positive way, as someone who’s looking for God, although the Bible says, “There is none that seeketh after God” (Romans 3:11; p. 1194). They think anyone can trust Jesus any time he wants. They believe in “synergism,” that God does His part, and man does his part by saying a prayer or giving up a sin, and so man and God work together to get a person saved. They do that, but we will serve the Lord!

V. Fifth, their view of sin.

The Bible says that sin is horrible. It’s a crime against God. The Bible says, “Sin bringeth forth death” (James 1:15; p. 1307). Again, the Bible says, “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23; p. 1199). For new-evangelicals, sin isn’t a good thing. But it isn’t that bad either! It’s the kind of mistake that everyone makes. It can easily be forgiven. Just say a prayer and you’re fine, because God is a God of love only. They do that, but we will serve the Lord!

VI. Sixth, their view of conversion.

For Bible Christians, conversion is a precious thing that Christ called us to strive for. Jesus said, “Strive to enter in at the strait gate” (Luke 13:24; p. 1095).

For new-evangelicals, conversion is a “nothing.” You can have it any way you want, at any time. You can make any kind of decision. You can say a sinner’s prayer, think a thought, believe a doctrine, have a dream, or anything else. That’s not conversion!

I must say that conversion doesn’t change everything. A person still has his culture, his background. There must be a process of sanctification and Christian growth. That’s discipleship. But Jesus did say, “Except ye be converted...ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3; p. 1024).

Some people who seem to be converted turn away later. We are not God. We cannot see perfectly into the human heart. There are depths of the heart and soul that only God knows. I can only say there are tests in life that come well after someone is hopefully saved and then baptized. There are tests of what you will do if you feel bad, what you’ll do if your friends leave, or whether you’ll choose an easy life over a cross-bearing one. Those tests can come at any age, and in many different ways. They come at times you don’t expect. They come in ways you don’t expect. The Devil will offer you a way to appear Christian – even going to a church – and still have it your way. That’s what Chan’s apostate church does. It gives a “covering” of being a Baptist church and still lets you have it your way. That’s what it does for the people who go there. They do that, but we will serve the Lord!

VII. Seventh, their view of Christ.

To Bible Christians, Jesus is the Saviour who died painfully to give us a Blood atonement. There was no other way to satisfy the wrath of God. Christ gave “a propitiation [a sin-payment, satisfying God’s wrath] through faith in his blood” (Romans 3:25; p. 1195).

To new-evangelicals, Jesus is a friend. He loves us and wants us to be happy. His death on the Cross for us helps to fulfill that wanting, for He wants us to be happy in Heaven with God. That’s the “relational” faith of new-evangelicals. They do that, but we will serve the Lord!

VIII. Eighth, their view of the Christian life.

Bible Christians seek to serve Christ in their local church. They practice self-denial, for Jesus said, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me” (Luke 9:23; p. 1086). Bible Christians are in the church to serve Christ, not to get goodies from Christ and the church. They expect to work hard. They expect to suffer. They expect to serve.

But new evangelicals turn it backwards! For new-evangelicals, the Christian life is to be enjoyed. Our text says, “Their God is their belly.” They want to fill their bellies and their lives. Their life is not self-denial but self-fulfillment. They have even made a theology out of it, from Robert Schuller to Joel Osteen. But it isn’t just those two men. New-evangelicals think God wants you to be happy, to reach your potential, and to be all you can be. No cross for them! Nothing unpleasant for them! God and the church are there to serve them and make their lives better. They’re not there to serve, but to be served. They do that, but we will serve the Lord!

IX. Ninth, their view of the church.

The Bible says that the church is the body of Christ. It says, “The church, which is his body” (Ephesians 1:22, 23; p. 1251), and the Christians are the members of it. The body of Christ is the local church. Christians serve Christ in their church. They are loyal to their church (see Hebrews 13:7, 17; p. 1304; Romans 16:17, 18; p. 1210; I Corinthians 1:10; p. 1212).

To new-evangelicals, the church is not a place to serve, it’s a place to be served. It’s a place to enjoy. It’s not the holy body of Christ, it’s a group of people you like to be with. That’s what Olivas’ church is. That’s what Chan’s church is. The church is there to help you and make you feel good. You take from it what you like and let the rest go. And you can leave it at any time when it isn’t making you happy. That’s not Bible Christianity. That’s selfishness! They do that, but we will serve the Lord!

X. Tenth, their view of the Judgment.

Bible Christians know that Jesus is coming back. They know He will judge the Christians for what they have done for Him, and give rewards to some. Concerning that judgment, the Bible says, “We [the Christians] must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad” (II Corinthians 5:10; p. 1233). That’s called “the Bema Judgment,” the judgment of believers. The word “Bema” means “judgment seat.”

The Bible also speaks of the Last Judgment of the unsaved dead. The Bible says, “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works... And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:12, 15; p. 1351). Lost people will hear their sins read out of God’s books. Then they will be cast into the lake of fire. At the Last Judgment, Jesus will not be present as Saviour, for the lost have rejected His salvation. He will be their fearful judge.

New-evangelicals may believe that Jesus is coming back, but they’re not worried about any judgment. They may say there’s a place called Hell, but they’re not worried about it. They may say Jesus will judge the Christians, but they think only of crowns, not of rebukes. They expect rewards, but not the loss of them. They don’t expect God to look sternly upon them, only lovingly.

Do you think the apostate Chan believes in the Judgment – either the Bema Judgment or the Last Judgment? Does he think he’ll stand and be judged? No! The Bible says, “There is no fear of God before [his] eyes” (Romans 3:18; p. 1194). If he believed in the Judgment, he wouldn’t have done what he did. He didn’t think about any Judgment. He doesn’t really believe in the Judgment. He only looked for what he could grab here and now – the people in our church! The Bible says, “Whose God is their belly.” He grabbed what he could to fulfill his own lusts. He didn’t think about the God who will judge him. But the Bible says he will stand before the Judgment – and judged he will be!

New-evangelicalism is very different from Bible Christianity. It is self-centered, not God-centered. They’re self-centered, but we will serve the Lord! Run from these “enemies of the cross of Christ”! Run from the apostate Chan and all the rest. Turn to Christ. Become a Bible Christian and stay that way!

Some of you have not trusted Jesus. Jesus died on the Cross to pay for your sin. He shed His Blood to wash your sin away. He rose from the dead to give you life. If you would like to speak with us about trusting Jesus, please come and stand at the front of the room now. Amen.


THE OUTLINE OF

NEW-EVANGELICALISM IS NOT BIBLE CHRISTIANITY!

by Dr. Christopher L. Cagan

“For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things” (Philippians 3:18, 19; p. 1260 Scofield).

I.     First, their view of the Bible, John 17:17.

II.    Second, their view of God, Nehemiah 1:5; Psalm 7:11; Exodus 34:7.

III.   Third, their view of election, Matthew 22:14.

IV.   Fourth, their view of man, Romans 3:9; 8:8; 3:11.

V.    Fifth, their view of sin, James 1:15; Romans 6:23.

VI.   Sixth, their view of conversion, Luke 13:24; Matthew 18:3.

VII.  Seventh, their view of Christ, Romans 3:25.

VIII. Eighth, their view of the Christian life, Luke 9:23.

IX.   Ninth, their view of the church, Ephesians 1:22, 23; Hebrews 13:7, 17;
Romans 16:17, 18; I Corinthians 1:10.

X.    Tenth, their view of the Judgment, II Corinthians 5:10;
Revelation 20:12, 15. Romans 3:18.