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

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.

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!