Reflections

The Impossibility of Progressive, Liberal, and Leftist Christianity

“There is nothing new under the sun,” says the writer of Ecclesiastes.  This is certainly true when it comes to false teachings and those who seek to undermine true Christian faith. Throughout the centuries, the kicks against Christian doctrine and the twisting thereof come through various presentations, titles, and trickeries, but they remain the same lies, unbelief, and defiance of Christ’s Lordship they have always been. They are the same poisons, only in new bottles with catchy labeling.

What has changed, however, is the church’s confidence and discernment to call these poisons out for what they are—heresies, departures from authentic Christianity. This has not always been the case. Jude warns of those who infiltrate churches, “ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ” (v. 4), persons who follow the ways of Cain, Balaam, Korah, and fallen angels. 

Ignatius (A.D. 30-107), writes, “For there are some vain talkers and deceivers, not Christians, but Christ-betrayers, bearing about the name of Christ in deceit…. For they speak of Christ, not that they may preach Christ, but that they may reject Christ.”

Years later, Irenaeus (A.D. 120-202) writes, “Certain men have set the truth aside, and being in lying words and vain genealogies … and by means of their craftily-constructed plausibilities draw away the minds of the inexperienced and take them captive.”

The apostles and early church fathers were not kind when it came to heresy, because they knew how serious and deadly these are. They understood the doom and severe judgment awaiting apostates. Today, the pendulum has swung the opposite direction, and much of what professes to be the church is nothing more than congregations that have swallowed the poisons of heretical teachings under the guise of Christianity. Many who profess to be liberal or progressive Christians are nothing more than charlatans who mask their own unbelief and unwillingness to yield to Christ’s lordship. In fact, when you examine their teachings and ideologies in the light of the Scriptures, they deny much of what the Bible affirms, condone much of what the Bible condemns, and reject much of what the Bible declares. If one will examine such teachings of so-called liberal or progressive Christians in light of the Scriptures, he will see the inconsistencies. For while false teachers seemingly profess Christ, they will reject His core teachings and those of His apostles—the ones He commissioned to carry forth His teachings. While the apostles stress moral purity, the liberals reject these as outdated, puritanical teachings to be cast away. While Jesus completely trusted the Scriptures and their preservation, the progressives have their wise men of “higher biblical criticism,” which is nothing less than academic unbelief. Leftist liberation theology is nothing more than a breaking free from the supernatural aspect of the gospel and bringing it into the bondage of Marxist ideas. And the so-called social gospel is simply trading the true gold of the gospel for fool’s gold of naturalism.

I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel—not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. ~ Galatians 1:6-8

Jude tells us to “contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints” (v. 3). This faith was once for all delivered, and it cannot be altered or reconstructed. The impossibility of liberal, progressive, and Leftist Christianity is simply that these cease to be Christianity at all. Each of these reject authentic Christianity fundamentally. A liberal or progressive Christian is as nonsensical as a sacred prostitute, Christian satanist, or an atheistic theist. 

When all boils down, one is either born again or he is not. One either believes that Christ died for our sins and was raised from the dead or he doesn’t. One either believes the apostles’ teaching or he doesn’t. One is either willing to yield to Jesus as Savior and Lord or else refuse to do so. Flapping one’s gums and offering rhetoric which conflicts with the Scriptures remains heretical, regardless how it’s packaged. It will never become Christianity. This is an impossibility. Unbelief and rebellion remain as such, regardless how much religiosity is mixed in.

For rebellion is as the sin of divination, and presumption is as iniquity and idolatry. ~ 1 Samuel 15:23

They profess to know God, but they deny him by their works. ~ Titus 1:16

They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us. ~ 1 John 2:19

Song: To Worship Is to Obey

Here is the final of the four songs. This one, I believe, gets to the very heart of worship. I hope you enjoy it.

You are Lord, and You are King;

You are worthy of my everything.

You want more than just mere songs,

You want my heart, You want my all.

Chorus:

To worship is to obey.

To worship is to obey 

To love You is to obey You.

To obey You, Lord, is to love You.

To worship is to obey.

You desire more than sacrifice –

You want me to live like Christ;

To be holy, to live in the light,

To walk justly, and to do what is right.

(Chorus) 

Bridge:

The sacrifice in which You delight

Is the yielded heart, broken and contrite.

The heart of worship is to obey – 

To love You and others, and to walk in all Your ways.

To worship is to obey.

(Chorus)

(Words and music by Everett “Geno” Pyse)

Song: let Our kIng be praised

The third song (of four). I hope your heart will be stirred with wonder at the majesty and love of Jesus Christ!

The angels bow down in wonder

As they sing to the King of kings,

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lamb who was slain,

Who is alive forevermore!”

Let us join in their song like thunder,

Let His glorious anthem ring –

“Glory, glory, glory to the King who reigns –

Every tongue will confess He is Lord!”

Chorus:

Let us sing of all He has done –

And all He continues to do;

Let His glory far outshine the sun,

And fill all the earth through and through –

Let Our King be praised!

Let this song fill the hearts of His people –

All the earth become one holy band,

“Worthy, worthy, worthy is the Lord Jesus Christ,

He who died for the sins of all men!”

(Repeat chorus)

Let Jesus be praised!

Bridge:

Let Him be praised 

By every tongue and nation;

Let Him be praised,

Let His Name fill all the earth!

Let Him be praised 

For His gracious salvation;

Let Him be praised –

Nothing compares to His worth!

The angels bow down in wonder,

Tell me, how can we dare do less?

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lamb who was slain,

But who is risen – conquering death!”

(Repeat chorus)

Let our King be praised!

Let our King be praised!

Let Jesus be praised!

(Words and music by Everett “Geno” Pyse)

Song: o, come our king

Here is the second song to be shared. I hope you enjoy it and that your heart is stirred with anticipation for King Jesus’ return.

O come our King,

Who was slain, who was raised –

Let every heart,

Every tongue, join in praise!

Amen!

Amen!

Come in Your glory,

In full majesty –

We bow in reference,

In humility.

Amen!

Amen!

Bridge:

Every knee will bow,

As you are adored –

And every tongue confess

That Jesus is Lord! (repeat)

O come our King,

As we humbly bow down;

Your Name alone

Glorified and renowned!

Amen!

Amen!

O come our King,

Who was slain, who was raised –

Let every heart,

Every tongue, join in praise! Amen!

(Words and music by Everett “Geno” Pyse) 

Song: Celebration of the King

For the next few posts, I’d like to share some songs I’ve written. I hope you will enjoy them. I’ll first share the lyrics, then a link to the song. The first song is entitled, Celebration of the King.

No condemnation

For those who are in Jesus Christ;

Our declaration –

Jesus is God‘s great sacrifice!

Reconciliation –

Through Christ God draws us unto Him;

Our great salvation –

Jesus who takes away our sin!

Chorus:

We sing, “Holy!”

We give glory!

Holy is the Lamb!

We bow our knees,

He is worthy –

Holy is the Lamb!

New creations –

Made new by the Blood of Jesus Christ!

Revelation –

In Christ God‘s love is revealed to us!

(Repeat chorus)

Bridge:

Holy, holy, holy is the Lamb!

Glory, glory, glory to the Lamb!

Worthy, worthy, worthy is the Lamb!

Who was slain – who is alive forevermore!

Exaltation –

Of Jesus Christ the King of kings!

Acclamation –

Jesus Christ is Lord over everything!

(repeat chorus x 2)

Holy, holy, holy is the Lamb!

(Words and music by Everett “Geno” Pyse)

Why? What Evil Has He Done?

After being arrested and interrogated, it was clear the whole uproar was ludicrous and the charges were bogus. The man was not a threat to neighbors, the community, or to the state. The man had not harmed or defrauded anyone. Nevertheless, the mob was out for blood.

And Pilate said to them, “Why? What evil has he done?” But they shouted all the more, “Crucify him.” ~ Mark 15:14

Not much has changed in 2000 years, in this regard. No one has displayed and taught love (agape) like Jesus. No one has shown how to break down racial, social, and economic barriers, like Him, teaching us to love and respect the respectable and the outcast alike. No one has exemplified the valuing of individuals, whether men, women, children, family, friends, misfits, or enemies.

In teaching us to love, He teaches not to harm, steal, or even to speak ill of one another. He teaches us how to forgive, heal, and move on. He restores the dignity of those who have failed. He extends compassion to those who are hurting. He shares with the needy. He is not easily angered, but He is angered by religious hypocrisy.

Strange, is it not, that Jesus, the One who teaches us the Golden Rule and exemplifies the very truth of sacrificial love is still so despised? “Get Him out of our institutions!” “Ban Him and His teachings from our schools.” “Just keep Him out of the workplace!” Mohammed is welcomed, despite his violent conquests. Other religions and spiritualities are permitted, but Jesus Christ? Absolutely not.

Why? What evil has He done? Of course, He hasn’t done any evil. Rather, His love confronts is with our own biases, prejudices, and hatred. His truth reveals our own dishonesty, deceit, and hypocrisies. His selfishness is an affront to our own greed, selfishness, and covetousness. His light shines in our darkness, and His purity reveals our spots, blemishes, and impurities. 

Jesus speaks bluntly about our real condition:

But Jesus on his part did not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man. ~ John 2:24-25

The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify about it that its works are evil. ~ John 7:7

Nevertheless, while the world still cries out, “Crucify Him! Away with Him!” it can never destroy Him who has overcome death. Furthermore, His promise remains trustworthy:

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. ~ John 1:12-13

Is Church for “Seekers”?

This is a misleading question, just as “seeker sensitive” is misleading as a description for a church. Churches are to be places of honesty, founded upon the truth of God’s Word and His gospel. Yet, there are many churches today that are guilty of such guile. Mind you, many of these churches might have had good intentions; however, by dismissing a vital truth of the Scriptures, many compromises have been made which, in turn, has weakened the body and has prohibited genuine spiritual growth in many of God’s people—all for the sake of trying to minister to the unregenerate—and worse, to build structures, organizations, and “empires” of which the Holy Spirit is not responsible.

The apostle Paul, quoting from the Old Testament, writes something that just grates against the pride of people.

As it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.” ~ Romans 3:10-12

Did you catch that? No one seeks for God. All have turned aside. This is not exaggeration, but it means exactly what it says. The very nature and consequence of our sin is departure from, and resistance of,  God and His ways. Whenever a Christian says, “I found God,” this is clearly a misunderstanding of what actually transpired. We are the ones who are found, not God. God is the One who seeks to find us, not vice versa.

The desire to evangelize the lost is a noble one; however, the motives of a church and/or pastor to simply grow a church, offer cool programs, or to feed the ego are not. Sadly, these are done, perhaps not maliciously, at the cost of feeding, nourishing, and growing the sheep of God’s flock.

Too many churches are more afraid of “offending” persons than God. Let us be clear on this, the gospel of Christ and the message of the Cross are offensive. The exclusivity of Christ as being the only way of salvation and that we are sinners worthy of hell are also offensive. However, the church does not exist to appease the masses, but it exists to magnify Christ and exhort, edify, equip, and encourage believers.

Consider the example of Jesus, Himself. After teaching that He is the bread of life and that no one comes to Him lest the Father first draws him, we are told:

When many of his disciples heard it, they said, “This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?” But Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were grumbling about this, said to them, “Do you take offense at this? Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. But there are some of you who do not believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray him.) And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.” After this many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him. ~ John 6:60-66

Note, nobody cares more about the lost than Jesus, but Jesus does not dilute His message for the sake of His hearers. His teaching to “eat His flesh and drink His blood”—to find one’s sole sustenance in Him—was grossly offensive to some who professed to be His followers. We are told that many ceased following Him, merely revealing they were not believers or regenerated. Nevertheless, Jesus does not compromise His message to keep any followers; instead, He let’s them leave.

So, back to the original question, is church for “seekers”? Before I answer let me say this, in no way should visitors be treated poorly or disrespectfully. However, no, the church is not for or about them. If they are offended by the truth of God’s Word, so be it. The church is not to lower God’s standards or dilute His message to make them feel more comfortable. And if they leave, they leave. At the same time, true believers deserve to be nourished and taught, to go from “milk” to “meat.” So many preachers have abandoned expository preaching and instead teach nice little series of messages, often with little substance (and in some cases none). 

Genuine “seekers” are first sought by God. Let Him use the preaching of His Word to convict the hearts of people and draw them to Himself. To dilute His message is to take away any potency, then all a person is left with is, perhaps, a nice experience with goose bumps, but no real encounter with the living God. What a lame exchange. Furthermore, don’t let the sheep and lambs go malnourished. These are God’s sheep and not men’s. Pastors and churches will one day give account for however they took care or abused His sheep and lambs—His beloved ones.

Vanity Boulevard 

There are times I’m tempted to put the pen down and put the computer away. “Why bother having a blog?” I wonder. After all, readers are few. Understand, it’s not about having a “following,” but about warning others of the clear dangers the Bible warns us of, with the evidence all around, only to have persons dismiss them. In the words of Isaiah, “Who has believed what he has heard from us? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?” (Isa. 53:1). How many times, despite the articles of encouragement, persons will write to say how “depressing” my writings are. Such persons fail to understand that warnings are not meant to be entertaining—but to warn!

Jesus says,

Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few. ~ Matthew 7:13-14

Ah, but the narrow road is boring, they say. An old dirt road with ruts and potholes in the middle of nowhere. But Vanity Boulevard, on the other hand, is where the action is! Like a street in Las Vegas, it’s full of people, lights, activity, and excitement! How does a preacher’s invitation to travel on the narrow compare to all this?

Sadly, some have moved their booths to the boulevard, incorporating its lights, ideologies, noise, and excitement—thinking this pleases the Master. Many who proclaim to be His have forgotten about old path.

And a highway shall be there, and it shall be called the Way of Holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it. It shall belong to those who walk on the way; even if they are fools, they shall not go astray. No lion shall be there, nor shall any ravenous beast come up on it; they shall not be found there, but the redeemed shall walk there. ~ Isaiah 35:8-9

As exciting as Vanity Boulevard may appear, its glory is but an illusion, its pleasures are but a vapor, and those who travel it merely travel to their own peril and deaths. The Way of Holiness, which requires kneeling at the Cross and is, at times, quite difficult, leads to genuine life, peace, joy, love—all realities of the Kingdom of God.

Indeed, my readers are few. There are other writings and videos far more exciting and ear-scratching. Sometimes even I wonder why I even bother. I’m sometimes reminded of a line in U2’s “One Tree Hill” where it says, “Where poets speak their hearts then bleed for it.”

So then, why do I continue to write? I suppose, similar to Jeremiah’s experience,

If I say, “I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,” there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot. ~ Jeremiah 20:9

When all boils down, each of us must make the choice which path we will travel, and we will find that we cannot truly change the rules God has established and decreed. But may it never be said from my accusers of me, “Why didn’t you say anything? Why didn’t you warn us?”

Forever Grateful 

In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, chapters one and two, believers are given some glimpses of deep realities of the depths of God’s love for us countered by the realities of our depravity and utter helplessness. Regarding His love for those who are His, take note of some strong words, full of meaning, used to describe God’s activities on our behalf.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ. ~ Ephesians 1:3-9

Two common mistakes I think many Christians make are, 1) thinking they actually understand the concepts of  God’s choosing us, predestination, adoption, and redemption; and 2) either dismissing or changing their meanings. These mean exactly what they say, despite the depths are beyond human comprehension.

One’s redemption, cleansing, and salvation were God’s ideas and initiatives, not ours. We could neither dream of a God loving us so much that He would suffer for us nor that He would lavish such profound love, grace, and forgiveness so richly and freely. Furthermore, as we will see from chapter two, apart from His initiatives, we would not have desired these to begin with.

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air [the devil], the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. ~ Ephesians 2:1-6

Like zombies, we appeared to be alive, but we were dead; made insane as we were driven by sinful passions and godless pride, following the current of the world and the rebellion of the devil. Like bucking, untamed horses, we kicked against the sacred and holy. By grace we are saved—and only by grace.

Again, a couple of common mistakes I think Christians make are, 1) thinking one was/is better than he really was/is; 2) thinking we didn’t follow after Satan in his rebellion; and 3) thinking that some inkling of goodness of our own contributed to our salvation.

The debt Christ paid with His own blood was a price we could never have paid. The humiliation and shame He endured was so we could be delivered from our own, making us acceptable to God. We sometimes forget just how serious our situation was. We were both separated from God and bound for a hell of our own earning and deserving. Jesus will forever be deserving of our awe, praise, worship, surrender, and gratitude. May we be forever grateful.

Their Blood Cries Out

Note: The following poem is explicit. If you should choose to read it, understand, my anger is not against the scared, confused girl/woman who has an abortion. My anger is towards those who applaud, celebrate, and financially benefit from such brutality, as well as those who refuse to call this evil. For my conviction on this matter, I do not apologize.

From floors, drainage pipes, and trash bags–

The little ones’ blood cries out;

Difficult to hear over the applause and cheers,

Of wicked people’s whoops and shouts.

So many just want to be good little citizens–

Don’t want to offend; no, don’t want to offend,

Certainly not those with hearts of iron,

As if having hearts of Christ, trying to pretend.

Ignore all the kickbacks taking place–

Disregard so many getting a piece of the pie.

Ah, but the cost, such a terrible cost;

Cruel profit, as the innocent are forced to die.

The cries pierce through biohazard containers,

The helpless are not abandoned alone;

We can know with certainty the crying

Of their blood reaches Heaven’s throne.

Do we thing the Father simply winks an eye?

Do we truly believe Jesus turns a deafened ear?

No, but now is the time to repent–we must repent!

For every drop of blood cries out–and each one He does hear!

Let the righteous be righteous still,

Let the wicked be wicked still–

But know this, there will be a day of reckoning

For all the helpless and innocent blood that is spilled!

~ G.P.

And the Lord said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to me from the ground. ~ Genesis 4:10

Let the evildoer still do evil, and the filthy still be filthy, and the righteous still do right, and the holy still be holy.”Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay each one for what he has done. ~ Revelation 22:11-12