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Month: October 2019

Reformation Day 2019

Reformation Day 2019

Today we celebrate Reformation Day. 502 years ago today, Martin Luther nailed the 95 Theses to the Castle Church door in Wittenberg, Germany. Contrary to popular belief, this was not an act of defiance against the church. Luther simply wanted a debate. He had no idea that he was about to spark the Protestant Reformation.

What Luther did not anticipate was that his theses would be translated by some students from Latin, the language of scholars, into German, the language of the people. Once this happened, there was no turning back.

In the 16th Century, Pope Leo X had continued work on St. Peter’s Cathedral that had been started by his predecessor. However, the church was out of money. So the Pope made a deal with Albert of Brandenberg who was seeking another Bishop position in the church. The deal was an indulgence to pay for St. Peter’s and to free souls from purgatory as a result.

John Tetzel was commissioned to sell this indulgences throughout Germany. His famous line was, “As soon as the coin in the coffer rings, a soul from purgatory springs.” It was this background that prompted Luther to call into question the practice of indulgences sparking the Reformation.

The Reformation was a call to action. A call to Scriptural fidelity. A rediscovery of the truth that we are justified by faith alone.

Today, 502 years later, we are desperately in need of another reformation. I spoke about this on Sunday We live in a culture today, and even churches today, that want to bow down to sin. Two at the forefront are LGBT and Abortion, not to mention science. We are told that we are to filter scripture through the lens of these agendas. However, that is not how we are to go about our lives.

As Christians, we are to filter everything through the lens of Scripture and Scripture alone. It’s not supposed to be the other way around. Christians need to take a stand today with the boldness of Martin Luther. Stand on Scripture, not on culture.

Soli Deo Gloria

Joe Biden Denied Communion: A Question of Faith

Joe Biden Denied Communion: A Question of Faith

It has been reported that, over the weekend, former Vice President Joe Biden was denied communion at St. Anthony Catholic Church in Florence, South Carolina by Rev. Robert Morey due to the presidential candidates public stance on Abortion.. Morey stated:

Holy Communion signifies we are one with God, each other and the Church. Our actions should reflect that. Any public figure who advocates for abortion places himself or herself outside of Church teaching.

Rev. Robert Morey

Naturally, this started a firestorm regarding faith and politics. Biden has long held that his religious beliefs should not dictate his political positions. But the group, Faithful America, said that the Catholic Bishop in South Carolina should rebuke Morey and force him to apologize to Biden. They claim:

Jesus said, ‘Take, eat — when you do this, do this in remembrance of me.’ He didn’t say, ‘Take, eat — but only if you agree with certain American political positions

Rev. Nathan Empsall – Faithful America

But is this truly all the Bible has to say about communion? If it were, then yes, I would agree with the stance that one’s political views should not be taken into account. However, this is not the only thing that the Bible says about the Lord’s Supper.

The Apostle Paul makes it very clear that when we take communion, as a remembrance to what Christ has accomplished, we are to examine ourselves so that we do not take the bread and cup in a manner that is unworthy (1 Corinthians 11:27-29)

This is not something that a Christian, or the church, should take lightly. We need to examine ourselves each time we come to the Lord’s Table to see what in our lives needs to be repented of and changed.

Abortion is an intentional killing of a human baby no matter what the United States Supreme Court says. The ten commandments make very clear, you shall not kill (Exodus 20:13). There is no way around that fact. This makes abortion a sin. To advocate abortion, is to openly advocate sin. Paul warns against this as well in Romans 1:32.

While the Catholic Church is in error on many fronts, today, a single priest, has stood up to the culture for truth.

A Letter to the Council of Bishops of the United Methodist Church

A Letter to the Council of Bishops of the United Methodist Church

To the Council of Bishops of the United Methodist Church:

It is in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ that I write to you today. 502 years ago today, Martin Luther stood up against the Church to speak out against unbiblical teachings and practices that had entered into the church. This culminated with the nailing of his 95 Theses on the Castle Church door in Wittenberg, Germany. Today I write with that same spirit of Luther.

I have not been a member of a United Methodist Church very long. However, I have seen enough in the past year and a half to be greatly disturbed at the corruption of the denomination and the lack of leadership by your council.

This past February we had the Special General Conference (GC2019) on a way forward regarding the status of LGBT in the life and practice of the United Methodist Church. That whole debacle was a disaster. There were no winners. Only losers. There are many reasons for this but a primary reason is your lack of leadership and your cowardice to not defend Scripture and enforce the Book of Discipline.

The Book of Discipline makes very clear, as does the Holy Word of God, that homosexuality is incompatible with Christianity. Nothing has changed except for a culture that is moving away from the Scriptures. Yet, there are forces within our denomination that wish to bend to that culture because it is convenient. This is a work of Satan himself.

You have allowed yourselves to become a tool of the serpent, the great deceiver. You have refused to enforce the Discipline to the point that there is even an openly gay Bishop, Karen Oliveto. Every day that she continues to sit on the Council without disciplinary action against her, those that allowed her to be voted in, the Council itself, and her Annual Conference, is a mockery to both the United Methodist Church and to the Holy Scriptures.

The encouragement of the One Church Plan and trying to force-feed those who wish to be faithful to the Scriptures this new doctrine based on culture and not the Word of God is a stain on the Council. You are supposed to be spiritual leaders. Instead, you are cowards that bend to cultural peer pressure.

With regard to the election of Oliveto, it is disgraceful. Church law dictates that she is outside of the Book of Discipline by being an openly professing and practicing homosexual. She should not only be removed from the Council of Bishops, she should be removed from any office of the United Methodist Church, immediately.

With regard to the 2020 General conference, there have been reports that there is an active push to elect progressive delegates that will work to overturn the decision from GC2019. There have even been reports that openly gay delegates have been selected. These delegates should not be allowed to vote as they are openly defying the Book of Discipline and Scripture.

It is the inaction and cowardice of the Bishops that have brought the denomination to the brink of schism. Why do the Bishops not have the courage and integrity to enforce the Discipline? Why do we even have church policies if they are just going to go ignored? Worse, why do we have certain Bishops, such as John Schol and others, who are actively working to undermine the Discipline and the vote of the General Conference?

Any Bishop who refuses to enforce the Discipline should resign or be removed. They have no business being in a leadership position in the church. They are a disgrace to the church and are at enmity with the Scriptures.

Paul said in the book of Romans chapter one that homosexual relationships are dishonorable and contrary to nature. He later states that they will receive due penalty for their sin and explains later that this penalty is death. The Bible has not changed so why are we even entertaining the idea that the Methodist church should change? Are we no longer faithful to the Scriptures because the culture tells us to bow down?

Why are we not standing when commanded to bow down like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego? Are we not willing to be cast into the world’s fiery furnace?

It is past time for the Bishops to choose this day whom they will serve. As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

In The Name of Our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ,
David Taylor Jr.

Methodist Bishops Must Be Disciplined

Methodist Bishops Must Be Disciplined

Part of the folly of the United Methodist Church is the spineless Council of Bishops who refuse to uphold scripture and the UMC Book of Discipline. This is despite the vote that happened at the Special General Conference in February. We are fully prepared to see this same battle next May. We saw this on full display this past week in the Greater New Jersey Conference. Bishop John Schol proclaimed, and even celebrated, that he will not pass along any complaints regarding LGBTQ. Here is what he said:

Today, I take my own step, and I invite you to take a step with me. I will not forward complaints concerning homosexuality for trial. I will not participate in the ongoing harm and division of our church. I will not participate in excluding faithful United Methodists, faithful and fruitful LGBTQ United Methodists from serving God. I will not prevent caring, loving LGBTQ people who in the United Methodist tradition want to enter into a covenant with God and one another.

Bishop John Schol

This flies in the face of Church Doctrine and Scripture. Romans 1 makes perfectly clear that the LGBTQ lifestyle is sin. The Book of Discipline affirms this.

The United Methodist Church does not condone the practice of homosexuality and considers this practice incompatible with Christian teaching.

Book of Discipline 2016

If the Bishops are going to defy the discipline it is time that the members of the church who follow Scripture to file formal complaints. The time to act is now.

Please sign our petition to take formal action against Bishop Schol at https://www.change.org/p/united-methodist-church-united-methodist-church-bishop-disciplinary-action

The (Sad) State of Christianity

The (Sad) State of Christianity

I have been witness to things over the years that makes my skin crawl. The state of the church universal, but particularly in the United States and Europe, is appalling. 500 years ago, Martin Luther sparked a Reformation that would forever change the course of church and human history. His courage and steadfastness in his search for truth is inspiring and served the church well. God did, and continues to use Luther in a mighty way.

However, today we are in need of reformation again. The church is falling back into darkness. We see a renewal to have bonds with the Roman Catholic Church that continues in its heresy. We see the rise of LGBT sympathizers in the church defying God and His created order. We see prosperity gospel being preached through the lands. We see the gifts of tongues being abused and falsified.

While all of this is happening we see the church losing the culture. Christianity is no longer an acceptable position in the eyes of the culture. This is nobody’s fault but the church. We have lost our way. We are more worried about appeasing the lost rather than telling the truth to the lost. We cater our church services to the lost which leaves us with shallow theology in the service leading to theological illiteracy in the pew.

Scripture has also lost its place as the source of truth that we are to live by. Science, which changes frequently, has replaced the Bible. Evolution is the mantra of the day despite the fact it goes directly against logic and what the Creator has told us happened. Are we really that wise? No.

Paul tells us in Romans that because we defy God we are left to our own ways. Professing ourselves, the human race, to be wise, we are becoming fools.

Where is the church? Where are the godly leaders? Where is Scripture? Why are we not fighting back? Are we afraid? Or do we just not care?

Church it is time for a new reformation. We must bring back biblical standards and authority. We must bring back rich theology. We must rediscover that the church is to feed the believers so that we can go out and preach to the lost. Stand up church!

Book Review: Grace Defined and Defended by Kevin DeYoung

Book Review: Grace Defined and Defended by Kevin DeYoung

Kevin DeYoung’s book, Grace Defined and Defended takes readers on a journey through the 400 year-old confession called the Canons of Dort. This simple, yet informative, book shows the history and circumstances that lead to the canons being written birthing the formula for what we now call TULIP.

The book does not get heavy into a theological treatise. DeYoung addresses this at the beginning stating:

My first goal is to explain the Canons of Dort. Think of this not as a  mini systematic theology or as an exegetical exploration of key salvation texts, but as a brief, accessible commentary on the background and theology of Dort itself.

DeYoung definitely delivers. He brings the articles of the canons to succinct and clear statements with explanation in modern English that leave no doubt on the history and meaning of the articles.

The main text of the book does not give the full text of the canons. Rather, DeYoung takes key phrases that build the meat of each article and expounds upon it. This helps to keep the book short and focused sticking with the most important facts of the documents. Full texts of the positions of Dort and the Arminian position (Remonstrant) can be found in the appendixes at the back of the book. Scripture proofs are also provided for each of the points.

It is good to note that at the beginning of the book DeYoung takes a history of the TULIP acronym explaining that, while good, it does not give the full picture of Calvinism or even the canons of Dort. He does make sure to say that TULIP is good for a summary but it is not the complete story or position.

I have to give Grace Defined and Defended five out of five stars. It is easy to read and understand while giving a clear history on the Canons of Dort. I applaud Kevin DeYoung for another outstanding book to help educate the church on what it believes and why it believes it.

I was given a free copy of the book by the Publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Thoughts on the United Methodist Church

Thoughts on the United Methodist Church

I go to a United Methodist Church. I sometimes preach at a United Methodist Church. But I have real problems with the United Methodist Church.

This year at GC2019, the church decided to strengthen the ban on LGBT in the Book of Discipline. Of course, this should never have even been a question. Scripture is clear that practicing homosexuality, professing homosexuality, and anything else that falls within LGBT is sin. Romans 1 makes this abundantly clear as do other places in Scripture.

Yet, there is a large part of the United Methodist Church that seeks to ignore, twist, and distort these passages to fit their political views or to appease people, or to just not have to make the hard and tough decisions.

In the months following the February decision to enact the Traditional Plan, we have seen an active push from One Church Plan supporters, and other plan supporters to undermine the decision. There are active pushes to elect new delegates that would overturn the decision. There have been Judicial Council complaints. There has been flat out defiance and rebellion against the plan. So where does this leave us? What are we to do?

If the Bishops will not enforce the discipline, and, in fact, keep helping to undermine the duly passed Traditional Plan, then the United Methodist Church needs to dissolve or remove Bishops who will not enforce the polices of the church. Since the latter is not going to happen, dissolution is our only option.

Those who seek to follow the Bible cannot stay in fellowship with those who defy Scripture. 2 John 11-13 clearly states that we are not to maintain connection with those who do not follow Christ’s teachings in the church.

The UMC has come to an end. There is no unity. It is a false unity. Continuing with this broken fellowship, this unyoked fellowship, only hurts the body of Christ.

It is my recommendation that at GC2020 they just end it all. Let all the churches go their own ways and decide for themselves whether they will follow the LGBT culture, or follow God’s Word.