Contextualization, Seeker-Movement, or Seeker Sensitive Methods of Evangelism

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Nine Parts World to One Part Christian

breaking-the-code_breaking-the-missional-code

The book, Breaking the Missional Code: Your Church Can Become a Missionary in Your Community By Ed Stetzer, and David Putman is used in many seminaries across the land. This author would argue that Breaking the Missional Code is just one more threat to the unification of Christianity. It propagates the idea that you are to mold your church to reflect the makeup of your community. First, what exactly do theses authors mean by Breaking the Code?

“Breaking the code does not mean just finding the best model (or models) for your community. Instead, it means discovering the principles that work in every context, selecting the tools most relevant for your context (which may come from methods and models), and then learning to apply them in a missionally effective manner. It means thinking missiologically, and ‘if we are not focusing on missiology then we are being disobedient to the Great Commission.’[1] According to Mittelberg, ‘For those of us who have our sights set on reaching secular people in our increasingly post-Christian society, we must step back and figure out what our mission field’s cultural landscape looks like.'”[2] (Stetzer and Putman 2006, p. 2)

Ed Stetzer penned an article in the magazine Christianity Today on the topic of contextualization. “Contextualization involves an attempt to present the Gospel in a culturally relevant way. For this reason, discussions about contextualization are connected to discussions about the nature of human culture; we cannot separate the two.” Culture is the shared beliefs and values of the group: the beliefs, customs, practices, and social behavior of a particular nation, people, or community. Stetzer writes, “The process of contextualization takes these facts about culture into account. It involves ‘presenting the unchanging truths of the gospel within the unique and changing contexts of cultures and worldviews.’[3] Dan Gilliland offers a full definition of contextualization. He defines contextualization as a tool ‘to enable, insofar as it is humanly possible, an understanding of what it means that Jesus Christ, the Word, is authentically experienced in each and every human situation.’[4] Such a tool is necessary because “while the human condition and the gospel remain the same, people have different worldviews which in turn impact how they interpret themselves, the world and the things you say.’[5]” Stetzer goes on to say, “Contextualization involves an attempt to present the Gospel in a culturally relevant way … Discussions about culture are unavoidable; all people live in a culture of some sort … Contextualization, then, is simply about sharing the Gospel well … Contextualization is an important component of effective Gospel ministry.”[6]

In short, some innocent appearing terms and ideas are not so innocent once we start unpacking them. Before dealing with Breaking the Missional Code and these terms, let us consider another common term, the so-called “seeker-movement” or “seeker-sensitive,” which aims to make churches more accessible and sensitive to the needs of spiritual seekers. The “seeker-movement” or “seeker sensitive” label is associated with some megachurches in the United States where Christian messages are often imparted by means of elaborate creative elements emphasizing secular popular culture, such as popular music styles. Such churches often also develop a wide range of activities to draw in families at different stages in their lives. Even Stetzer and Putman admit, “A few in the seeker movement have watered down the gospel.”[7] I would venture to say that it is far more than a few. The truth of the matter, it all boils down to only being about the numbers, finding slick ways to reaching those within Satan’s world and being success oriented.[8]

Christianity for almost 500 years since the Reformation has missed the boat that all churches are to be missional to their community, and now they are looking for ways to make up the ground. This is all good and fine, but it seems that they now want to jump on another boat, `let us be like the world so that we can attract the world.’ This is their version of Paul’s words, “I have become all things to all people that by all means, I might save some.” What if Paul were alive today, and he was on a missionary journey into some African countries, visiting some established congregations, and he saw that in many of these churches, men came to church with several of their wives. Would he become all things and accept polygamy, because it is a part of their culture?

Christians are humbly to share the Good News with all people, not prejudging them based on their race, culture, or background. (1 Cor. 9:22-23) Since the authors, Stetzer and Putman, chose how one dresses as an issue of knowing your mission field, we will address that as well.

While this is true, no church should adopt any changes that would violate Scripture, nor would they water down their values and standards merely to please the world. Of course, we do not want a standard of dress that exemplifies wealth, snobbery, and so on. However, we would not want to wear a standard of dress that exemplifies the world either.

There is a difference between a teen girl wearing something that only half covers her up, and respecting the African cultural Kaba, a popular style of women’s attire. There is a difference between a young man wearing a heavy metal or rap T-shirt to church and respecting the Korean hanbok, a bolero-style blouse, and a long skirt, uniquely proportioned.[9]

Based on the definition of indigenous on pages 91-92, what does it mean for you to be an indigenous church?

The idea behind indigenization is that a church should spring forth out of the soil in which it is planted. It is indigenous in that its leadership, expressions, forms, and functions reflect that of the context. At the same time, it serves as a transforming agent in the very culture that sustains it. When this happens, we can truly say we have an indigenous church.[10]

Breaking the Missional Code seems to be saying, an indigenous church is reflective of its community. It makes the statement, “The churches mentioned throughout this book and Planting Missional Churches, even though very different in terms of form and style, are good examples of indigenous churches.” The idea is that “their style [the church, pastor/leadership] reflects their community.” (Stetzer and Putman 2006, p. 93) Really? I think it would be that the members of the church, who came out of the community, should reflect the image of God.

While more Georgians are finding faith in Christ, statistics indicate that nearly 70 percent of the state’s 8,383,915 residents remain unchurched.” If this is so, then it is important that we ask the question how we can reintroduce people to church and ultimately to Christ. (Stetzer and Putman 2006, p. 90)

No, the question is just the opposite, “how can we reintroduce God’s Word to the people?” This author has stated it repeatedly in his writings and will continue to do so, that we should conform the world to the true Christian, biblical way. “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2, ESV)

It must seem that I am setting aside what seems like reasonable ideas within this book and others, but we should see it differently. There are 41,000 different denominations, which call themselves Christian, all believing differently. Many of these so-called Christian dominations are becoming more like the world and less like their Creator. We should not agree with the status quo of where things currently are, but nor should we agree with most of the Breaking the Missional Code either. The whole point can be summed up in this; the whole congregation going into the community must share the Gospel, evangelize the community. The congregation must be first trained in witnessing, communication, reasoning, and teaching so that they can effectively relate the Word of God to the community. Yes, they need to be able to relate to the community.

Stetzer and Putman write, “Ironically, it is often when we train people to do evangelism that they become less effective in the process.” (p. 122) This is such nonsense, and so untrue, it troubles me the moment my eyes fell on the words. From this comment alone, this book should be set aside for another. Evangelism training is not ineffective; the one who set up the program is ineffective. Jesus spent 3.5 years training his disciples in evangelism.

Luke 6:40 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

40 A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher.

Just how effective was Jesus? How effective were his apostles and early disciples? Jesus early disciples carried on the work that he had commanded them to accomplish, which ran throughout the Roman Empire, in Asia, Europe, and Africa. (Matt 28:18-20) At the beginning of the second century, there were over a million Christians and estimated to be between 5-7 million by 300 C.E. In fact, the Christians displaced pagan religion as the official religion by 400 C.E.

Stetzer and Putman write, “Too often, we find the models they choose do not line up with the communities they are trying to reach.” (p. 154)

Here again, we start off with the fact that the book is seeking to mold the church into the community, as opposed to molding the community into the church. The objective is to convert the community into Christians, not the convert the church into a community pleaser. Have a biblical model, and then learn to reach the cultural milieu(s) that exists within your community.

Stetzer and Putman write, “A biblical church is a contextual church.” (p. 180) What is meant is adapting the church, without violating Scripture, to the local culture. What you have in these authors are missionary minded individuals who are used to the missionary field overseas. There they may have an African village, which has a single culture, or in China, a single Chinese community, or in Jordan, an Islamic community full of Sunni Muslims only, and so on.

However, the Western world is a melting pot of cultures. Within a given community, you could have 20-30 or more cultures. Which one do you try to make your church mold to, or is it best to have a biblically based church, which relates to all cultures, and invites them in, accepting aspects of their culture unless it violates Scripture. Even of the many, many cultures within a given community, there are those that do not reflect that because we are all individuals after all.

What if our context has to do with social status? If our community is made up of people with multimillion-dollar homes, should they waste money by building a church that is reflective of their mansions, costing millions upon millions on the look of the building? Should the pastors wear $5,000.00 suits? Should the pastor avoid sermons on money issues that are reflecting in New Testament teachings, for fear of offending the congregation?

A Biblical Church

  • The Bible is their foundation in faith, truth, and practice
  • Biblical preaching
  • The worship is based on Scriptural principles
  • The building is designed based on Scriptural principles
  • The music chosen is based on biblical principles
  • The education is biblical
  • The worldview and lifestyle of its members is biblical
  • Its evangelism is patterned after the New Testament
  • The pastors and servants are chosen based on Scripture
  • The structure of leadership is based on Scripture
  • Church discipline is based on Scripture
  • Organized and governed based on Scripture
  • And so on …

All the while, its members can relate to whoever is in the community. It has acceptance of cultural aspects is biblical as well. This means that they are welcome to engage in any cultural lifestyle that does not violate Scripture. For example, a woman could wear any type of dress that is relevant to her culture, as long as it is modest. While the book hints at this, many of its statements throughout belie what is truly biblical.

There are literally tens of millions of unbelieving, North Americans, walking around, who have a receptive heart to the biblical truth, the deeper Gospel. They are like low hanging fruit from the tree of potential disciples; all we have to do is pick them. Some will be easy to bring into the fold; some will have to be reasoned with to overcome their firmly entrenched ideas while some will have to have their criticisms overcome, before they will start to believe. Let us speak hypothetically, but realistically for a minute, to give us the real perspective.

In the evangelistic year of 2016, we will say (hypothetically) that there are 10 million potential disciples available to be picked from the tree of humanity. Jehovah’s Witnesses will take about 3-4 million of them while the Mormons will gather up another 2 million, and the Seventh Day Adventists will take between 1-2 million. The Witnesses will go out and win over the easy ones, the ones that have to have their false ideas overcome, as well as the ones that need their criticisms overcome as well. They will win over the blue-color worker, the teacher, the scientist, the professor, the Muslim, the Jew, the African, the Asian, even the occasional pastor, as they gather up 30-40 percent of the fruit available.

What about so-called true Christianity, i.e. Christendom? Well, let us quote Stetzer and Putman, “This ‘humiliation’ of Christendom has been underway for two centuries. It is no longer appropriate, if it ever was, to speak of “Christian America.” (p. 228). The only fruit that Christendom will take in is maybe less than 50,000 depressed souls that walk into their church looking for hope because they do not go out and win over anyone. They will take in far less than 0.01 percent of the 10 million potential disciples, and will only keep a few thousand before they are stolen from the above groups.

Stetzer and Putman write, “Did Jesus Christ not institute the church as his missionary instrument for fulfilling the Great Commission?” (p. 227)

Yes, he did, and this includes all Christians carrying out the Great Commission, not just the pastors. The book makes this point as well.

Stetzer and Putman write, “The heart of the Great Commission is to ‘make disciples.’ Earlier in this book, we described a disciple as one who lives like Jesus lived, loves like Jesus loved, and leaves behind what Jesus left behind.” (p. 227).

In other words, a “learner” or better known as a “Christian” makes another “learner.” If a Christian is to make disciples and this involves making them into “people who are like Jesus,” then that would mean they are to be teachers of potential disciples, helping them as they transform into becoming a Christian disciple.

Stetzer and Putman ask, “How do you turn your church into an army for breaking the unbroken code?”

It is quite simple; make a biblical church that is reflective of the New Testament in principle, which has members that are trained in effectively sharing God’s Word to all sorts of people in their community, proclaiming, teaching and making disciples, regardless of the culture one is from. Make the maximum number of members in a church be 150, at which point 75 divide and build another church in the same area. This way you are growing away and out from your first local-missional minded church.

Using Discernment 

Discernment is keenly selective judgment. In other words, we have the ability to judge well, and our ability to determine is finely tuned and able to sense minor differences, distinctions, or details, to obtain spiritual direction and understanding. A Christian who has both knowledge and discernment is able to make decisions that if Jesus were in our place, and in our imperfect human condition, he would have made the exact same decision. One way that we can use discernment is in our sharing of the biblical truths with others who possess different worldviews and backgrounds, so as to save some. The apostle Paul said,

1 Corinthians 9:19-23 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

19 For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a slave to all, so that I may gain more. 20 And so to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain Jews; to those under the law I became as under the law, though I myself am not under the law, that I might gain those under the law. 21 To those without law I became as without law, although I am not without law toward God but under the law toward Christ, that I might gain those without law. 22 To the weak I became weak, that I might gain the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. 23 But I do all things for the sake of the gospel, that I may become a fellow partaker of it.

Keep in mind that, even though Paul said, “I became as,” so that he might become all things to all men, so as to save them, he never became anything that would be contrary to God’s will and purposes. A good/bad example of this would be the modern day Christian heavy metal bands, who by all appearances, are just like the worldly ones. Such bands are nine parts world to one part Christian. Can we imagine young Timothy, Paul’s student and traveling companion, being a member of Stryper, Vengeance Rising, Deliverance, Believer, Tourniquet and P.O.D? Much of modern day Christianity, has become like the world in their misguided attempt to evangelize the world. They are nine parts world to one part Christian. This so-called evangelism is an excuse for loose conduct, i.e., an excuse to be worldly under the guise of ‘saving some.’ While we are using a hyperbolic extreme example here of being like the world, to save some out of the world, which is complete foolishness, there are many other minor to major examples within modern day Christianity. Jesus used hyperbole, which is to over exaggerate to emphasize a point, but sadly, in our day, we do not need to over exaggerate because our example found in these so-called Christian metal bands is a reality.

See Video to the below, Supposed Top 15 Christian Metal Bands

PLEASE—Turn the Volume ALL the Way Up!

THE FALSE TEACHER

The man in this video at the bottom of this page is a false teacher. He is twisting the Scriptures, which seem correct, but are not, so as to mislead. Please read this material before watching his video, so the truth stands out clearly. This man is arguing for contextulization, seeker-movement, or seeker sensitive methods of evangelism, as was mentioned in the above portion of this article.
What this commentator is doing is offering texts that are true; then, offering texts that are not being interpreted correctly, so we have a mixture of truth and lie.
He said there were verses that back up the belief that music can be harmful, likely inferring that it only applies to the secular heavy metal bands, not Christian metal. He quotes John 17:16 and Romans 12:2,

John 17:16 English Standard Version (ESV)16 They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.

Romans 12:2 English Standard Version (ESV)2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

He then says, “Music is neutral, it is neither good nor bad, but depends on how you use it.”

This is the Truth

This point is actually correct and dismisses his entire argument that Christian metal can be used as an evangelism tool. He then goes on to say “there are many Bible verses to support this view,” wherein he quotes Psalm 98:4 and 150:5. We have quoted them for you below.

Psalm 98:4 English Standard Version (ESV)

4 Make a joyful noise to theLord, all the earth;
break forth into joyous song and sing praises!
Psalm 150:5 English Standard Version (ESV)
5 Praise him with sounding cymbals;
praise him with loud clashing cymbals!

This is the False

He is using verses that were designed for servants of God singing praises to God, not music that is designed to cater to the flesh, to be Satanic like, so the worldly ones will consider God. He is misinterpreting these verses, twisting them so they give the appearance of being truth, just as he wants unsuspecting ones to accept Christian metal as being the truth.
His weak argument is that ‘we need Christian Metal to reach those who are into the metal music genre because people from the church have no other way of reaching them.’ Really, the only place we can find metal music fans is at concerts? They cannot be found in their home, on the phone, on the internet, at work, in the waiting room at the doctor’s office, or other places in society? The reason that the church cannot reach these ones is the same reason they cannot reach billions of others. They do not go out into their communities to share the gospel. The church has not trained the churchgoers to share their faith effectively. These latter points are the problems of evangelism. The solution is not to partake of the table of demons or be like the world, so as to save some. The solution is to train church leaders in evangelism, who in turn train the churchgoer in evangelism, so that they can use all facets of reaching the people, including metal fans.
Please, buy out the time to follow this discussion of questions and answers before watching the video below.

THE IMPORTANCE OF QUESTIONS

Matthew 7:13-25 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

The Narrow and Wide Gates

13 “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. 14 For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.

Recognize Them by Their Fruits

15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 You will recognize them by their fruits. They do not gather grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles, do they? 17 So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 So then, you will recognize them by their fruits.

21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you who practice lawlessness.’

The Two Foundations

24 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods[11] came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall because it had been founded on the rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27 And the rain fell, and the floods[12] came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was its fall.”

Leading Questions

These infer that there is but one correct answer and it guides the listener to that answer.

Q: After reading Matthew 7:13-14, does this not suggest there are two courses in life, one that leads to destruction, which many are on and one that leads to life, which few are finding?

A: Yes

Q: After reading Matthew 7:15, does this not suggest there will be some who appear as innocent as sheep, but really are false prophets to the point of being ravenous wolves?

A: Yes

Q: After reading Matthew 7:16-20, what is it that will help us identify these false prophets?

A: Their fruit

Q: After reading Matthew 7:21, who does Jesus say are the only ones who will enter into the kingdom.

A: Jesus said only those doing the will of the Father.

Q: After reading Matthew 7:22, will there be those who believe that they are doing the will of the Father?

A: Yes

Q: After reading Matthew 7:23, will Jesus accept their excuses for failing to do the will of the Father?

A: No

Clarifying Questions

These questions can be used in one of two ways. First, they can be used to clear up something that the listener said. Second, they can be used to clarify that the listener fully understands what something means.

NOTE/Q: The term prophet has two basic meanings. First, it means one who proclaims a message. Second, it means one who foretells the future. What does the term “prophet” mean here?

A: It means one who proclaims a message.

Q: What did Jesus mean by many being on the path of destruction? Was Jesus referring to his disciples (i.e., Christians) and those of religions other than Christianity?

A: The many Jesus referred to was his disciples, coming Christians.

Q: How do you know that the many who are on the path to destruction are the disciples of Jesus Christ?

A: Just after Jesus talks about the two paths, Jesus said ‘be careful of false prophets.’ Then, a few verses later he says “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven …”

Q: Are these false teachers found within Christianity and why are they so hard to recognize?

A: If it is the many Christian disciples, who are on the path to destruction; then, the teachers who taught them must have been Christian teachers. They are hard to recognize because Jesus compared them to sheep. In other words, they come across as innocent appearing.

Q: What did Jesus mean by the term “fruit”?

A: In other words, we would recognize them by their words and deeds.

Q: Based on who can enter into the kingdom, ‘those doing the will of the Father,’ what should we know?

A: What the will of the Father is?

Q: Did the many on the path to destruction believe they were doing the will of the Father?

A: Yes

Q: Jesus started out by talking about two paths and false teachers, correct?

A: Yes

Q: False teachers imply false teachings, correct?

A: Yes

Q: What did Jesus say he would say to those who thought they were doing the right thing or thought they were teaching the right thing but were not?

A: ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

Q: We have false teachers, who are difficult to recognize, as they appear as innocent as sheep. Recognizing them can only be accomplished by recognizing their fruit (words and deeds), as well as knowing the true will of the Father. Does it not then seem prudent on our behalf that we should apply 2 Thessalonians 2:10 and 2 Corinthians 13:5?

A: Yes, the ones, who are deceived by these false teachers, will perish because they refused to be receptive to the truth. Therefore, we need to be in a constant mode of examining ourselves, as well as our beliefs, to see whether we are really in the truth.

2 Thessalonians 2:10 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

10 and with every unrighteous deception[13] for those who are perishing, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved.

2 Corinthians 13:5 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

5 Keep testing yourselves to see if you are in the faith. Keep examining yourselves! Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you unless indeed you fail to meet the test?

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A clean conscience brings us inner peace, calmness, and a profound joy that is seldom found in this world under the imperfection of fallen flesh that is catered to by Satan, the god of the world. Many who were formerly living in sin and have now turned their life over to God, they now know this amazing relief and are able today to hold a good and clean conscience as they carry out the will of the Father. WALK HUMBLY WITH YOUR GOD, has been written to help its readers to find that same joy, to have and maintain a good, clean conscience in their lives. Of course, it is incapable of covering every detail that one would need to consider and apply in their lives …

WIVES BE SUBJECT TO YOUR HUSBANDS: How Should Wives Treat Their Husbands?WIVES BE SUBJECT TO YOUR HUSBANDS How Should Wives Treat Their Husbands?

This book is primarily for WIVES, but wives will greatly benefit from it as well. WIVES will learn to use God’s Word to construct a solid and happy marriage. The Creator of the family gives the very best advice. Many have been so eager to read this new publication: WIVES BE SUBJECT TO …

HUSBANDS LOVE YOUR WIVES: How Should Husbands Treat Their Wives?HUSBANDS LOVE YOUR WIVES: How Should Husbands Treat Their Wives?

This book is primarily for HUSBANDS, but wives will greatly benefit from it as well. HUSBANDS will learn to use God’s Word to construct a solid and happy marriage. The Creator of the family gives the very best advice. Many have been so eager to read this new publication: HUSBANDS LOVE …

Christian Apologetics

DEFENDING OLD TESTAMENT AUTHORSHIP: The Word of God Is Authentic and TrueDEFENDING OLD TESTAMENT AUTHORSHIP: The Word of God Is Authentic and True

How true is the Old Testament? For over two centuries Biblical scholars have held to the so-called documentary hypothesis, namely, that Genesis-Deuteronomy was not authored by Moses, but rather by several writers, some of whom lived centuries after Moses’ time. How have many scholars …

UNDERSTANDING ISLAM AND TERRORISM: A Biblical Point of ViewUNDERSTANDING ISLAM AND TERRORISM: A Biblical Point of View

Islam is making a significant mark in our world. It is perhaps the fastest-growing religion in the world. It has become a major obstacle to Christian missions. And Muslim terrorists threaten the West and modern democracies. What is the history of Islam? What do Muslims believe? Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God? Why do we have this clash of civilizations? Is sharia law a threat to modern democratic values? How can we fight terrorists in the 21st century? These are significant questions that deserve thoughtful answers …

IS THE QURAN The WORD OF GOD?: Is Islam the One True Faith?IS THE QURAN THE WORD OF GOD?: Is Islam the One True Faith?

IS THE QURAN THE WORD OF GODIs Islam the One True Faith? This book covers the worldview, practices, and history of Islam and the Quran. This book is designed as an apologetic evangelistic tool for Christians, as they come across Muslims in their daily lives, as well as to inform …

REASONS FOR FAITH: The First Apologetic Guide For Christian Women on Matters of The Heart, Soul, and MindREASONS FOR FAITH: The First Apologetic Guide For Christian Women on Matters of The Heart, Soul, and Mind

If you have the desire to become better equipped to reach others for the lost or to strengthen your faith, Judy Salisbury’s guide—written specifically to meet the needs of Christian women today—offers you a safe, practical, and approachable place to start. In her lively, …

BIBLICAL CRITICISM: What are Some Outstanding Weaknesses of Modern Historical Criticism?BIBLICAL CRITICISM: What are Some Outstanding Weaknesses of Modern Historical Criticism

Historical Criticism of the Bible got started in earnest, known then as Higher Criticism, during the 18th and 19th centuries, it is also known as the Historical-Critical Method of biblical interpretation. Are there any weakness to the Historical-Critical Method of biblical interpretation …

BIBLICAL CRITICISM: Beyond the BasicsBIBLICAL CRITICISM: Beyond the Basics

Biblical criticism is an umbrella term covering various techniques for applying literary historical-critical methods in analyzing and studying the Bible and its textual content. Biblical criticism is also known as higher criticism, literary criticism, and historical criticism. Biblical …

CHRISTIAN APOLOGETIC EVANGELISM: Reaching Hearts with the Art of PersuasionCHRISTIAN APOLOGETIC EVANGELISM: Reaching Hearts with the Art of Persuasion

APOLOGETICS: Reaching Hearts with the Art of Persuasion by Edward D. Andrews, author of seventy-two books, covers information that proves that the Bible is accurate, trustworthy, fully inerrant, and inspired by God for the benefit of humankind. The reader will be introduced to Christan …

CONVERSATIONAL EVANGELISM: Defending the Faith, Reasoning from the Scriptures, Explaining and Proving, Instructing in Sound Doctrine, and Overturning False Reasoning, [Second Edition]CONVERSATIONAL EVANGELISM, [Second Edition]

Evangelism is the work of a Christian evangelist, of which all true Christians are obligated to partake to some extent, which seeks to persuade other people to become Christian, especially by sharing the basics of the Gospel, but also the deeper message of biblical truths. Today the …

THE CHRISTIAN APOLOGIST: Always Being Prepared to Make a Defense [Second Edition]THE CHRISTIAN APOLOGIST: Always Being Prepared to Make a Defense [Second Edition]

MOST Christian apologetic books help the reader know WHAT to say; THE CHRISTIAN APOLOGIST is HOW to communicate it effectively. The Christian apologist words should always be seasoned with salt as we share the unadulterated truths of Scripture with gentleness and respect. Our example …

THE EVANGELISM HANDBOOK: How All Christians Can Effectively Share God's Word in Their Community, [SECOND EDITION]THE EVANGELISM HANDBOOK: How All Christians Can Effectively Share God’s Word in Their Community, [SECOND EDITION]

THE EVANGELISM HANDBOOK is a practical guide (for real-life application) in aiding all Christians in sharing biblical beliefs, the Good News of the kingdom, how to deal with Bible critics, overturning false beliefs, so as to make disciples, as commanded by Christ. Matthew 24:14; …

YOUR GUIDE FOR DEFENDING THE BIBLE: Self-Education of the Bible Made Easy [Third Edition]YOUR GUIDE FOR DEFENDING THE BIBLE: Self-Education of the Bible Made Easy [Third Edition]

The reader will receive eight small introductory books in this one publication. Andrews’ intention is to offer his reader several chapters on eight of the most critical subject areas of understanding and defending the Word of God. This will enable the reader to lay a solid foundation for …

THE CULTURE WAR: How the West Lost Its Greatness & Was Weakened From WithinTHE CULTURE WAR: How the West Lost Its Greatness & Was Weakened From Within 

The Culture War. How the West lost its greatness and was weakened from within outlines how the West lost its values, causing its current decline. It is a forceful attack on the extreme liberal, anti-religious ideology which since the1960’s has permeated the Western culture and …

EARLY CHRISTIANITY IN THE FIRST CENTURY Jesus' Witnesses to the Ends of the EarthEARLY CHRISTIANITY IN THE FIRST CENTURY Jesus’ Witnesses to the Ends of the Earth

EARLY CHRISTIANITY IN THE FIRST CENTURY will give its readers a thrilling account of first-century Christianity. When and how did they come to be called Christians? Who are all obligated to be Christian evangelists? In what way did Jesus set the example for our evangelism? What is the …

CRISIS OF FAITH: Saving Those Who DoubtCRISIS OF FAITH Saving Those Who Doubt 

Inside of some Christians unbeknownst to their family, friends or congregation, they are screaming, “I doubt, I doubt, I have very grave doubts!” OURS is an age of doubt. Skepticism has become fashionable. We are urged to question everything: especially the existence of God and the …

Investigating Jehovah's Witnesses: Why 1914 Is Important to Jehovah?s WitnessesINVESTIGATING JEHOVAH?S WITNESSES: Why 1914 Is Important to Jehovah?s Witnesses

The intention of this book is to investigate the biblical chronology behind Jehovah’s Witnesses most controversial doctrinal position that Jesus began to rule invisibly from heaven in October 1914. This biblical chronology of the Witnesses hinges upon their belief that the destruction of …

Translation and Textual Criticism

THE COMPLETE GUIDE to BIBLE TRANSLATION: Bible Translation Choices and Translation Principles [Second Edition]THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO BIBLE TRANSLATION: Bible Translation Choices and Translation Principles [Second Edition] 

THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO BIBLE TRANSLATION (CGBT) is for all individuals interested in how the Bible came down to us, as well as having an insight into the Bible translation process. CGBT is also for those who are interested in which translation(s) would be the most beneficial to use.

CHOOSING YOUR BIBLE: Bible Translation DifferencesCHOOSING YOUR BIBLE: Bible Translation Differences

There are more than 150 different Bible translations in the English language alone. Some are what we call literal translations, which seeks to give the reader the exact English equivalent of what was written in the original language text, thus allowing the reader access to the actual Word …

THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT The Science and Art of Textual CriticismTHE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT: The Science and Art of Textual Criticism

THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT was copied and recopied by hand for 1,500 years. Regardless of those scribes who had worked very hard to be faithful in their copying, errors crept into the text. How can we be confident that what we have today is the Word of God? Wilkins and Andrews …

MISREPRESENTING JESUS: Debunking Bart D. Ehrman's "Misquoting Jesus" [Third Edition]MISREPRESENTING JESUS: Debunking Bart D. Ehrman’s “Misquoting Jesus” [Third Edition]

Edward D. Andrews boldly answers the challenges Bart D. Ehrman alleges against the fully inerrant, Spirit-inspired, authoritative Word of God. By glimpsing into the life of Bart D. Ehrman and following along his course of academic studies, Andrews helps the reader to understand the …

Biblical Studies

HOW TO STUDY YOUR BIBLE: Rightly Handling the Word of GodHOW TO STUDY YOUR BIBLE: Rightly Handling the Word of God

A comprehensive book on HOW TO STUDY YOUR BIBLE by observing, interpreting, and applying, which will focus on the most basic Bible study tools, principles, and processes for moving from an in-depth reading of the Scriptures to application. What, though, if you have long felt that you are …

THE NEW TESTAMENT: Its Background, Setting & ContentTHE NEW TESTAMENT: Its Background, Setting & Content

…the author’s intended meaning to his original readers and how that meaning can then apply to us. Marshall gives you what you need for deeper and richer Bible study. Dr. Lee M. Fields writes, “‘Deep’ study is no guarantee that mature faith will result, but shallow study guarantees …

THE LIFE OF JESUS CHRIST: What Do You Know About Jesus? [Updated and Expanded]THE LIFE OF JESUS CHRIST: What Do You Know About Jesus? [Updated and Expanded] 

The life of Christ is an exhaustless theme. It reveals a character of greater massiveness than the hills, of a more serene beauty than the stars, of sweeter fragrance than the flowers, higher than the heavens in sublimity and deeper than the seas in mystery. As good Jean Paul has …

THE LIFE OF THE APOSTLE PAUL: The Apostle to the Nations [Updated and Expanded]THE LIFE OF THE APOSTLE PAUL: The Apostle to the Nations [Updated and Expanded] 

Stalker’s Life of St. Paul became one of the most widely read and respected biographies of the Apostle to the Gentiles. As an insightful compendium on the life of Paul, this work is of particular interest to pastors and teachers who desire to add realism and vividness to their account of …

INTERPRETING THE BIBLE: Introduction to Biblical HermeneuticsINTERPRETING THE BIBLE: Introduction to Biblical Hermeneutics

Delving into the basics of biblical interpretation, Edward D. Andrews has provided a complete hands-on guide to understanding what the author meant by the words that he used from the conservative grammatical-historical perspective. He teaches how to study the Bible on a deep, scholarly …

HOW TO INTERPRET THE BIBLE: An Introduction to HermeneuticsHOW TO INTERPRET THE BIBLE: An Introduction to Hermeneutics

…Linguistic and literary factors are analyzed so that the various genres of Scripture are examined for their true meaning. The importance of having sound principles of interpretation cannot be overstated as to ignore them will result in all manner of erroneous assumptions. Beville presents …

THE CHURCH COMMUNITY IN CONTEMPORARY CULTURE: Evangelism and Engagement with Postmodern PeopleTHE CHURCH COMMUNITY IN CONTEMPORARY CULTURE: Evangelism and Engagement with Postmodern People

Once upon a time, Postmodernism was a buzz word. It pronounced Modernism dead or at least in the throes of death. It was a wave that swept over Christendom, promising to wash away sterile, dogmatic and outmoded forms of church. But whatever happened to postmodernism? It was regarded …

DEVELOPING HEALTHY CHURCHES: A Case-Study in RevelationDEVELOPING HEALTHY CHURCHES: A Case-Study in Revelation

church. It offers an appointment with the Great Physician that no Christian can afford to ignore. Developing Healthy ChurchesA Case-Study in Revelationbegins with a well-researched outline of the origins and development of the church health movement. With that background in mind the …

DYING TO KILL: A Christian Perspective on Euthanasia and Assisted SuicideDYING TO KILL: A Christian Perspective on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide

…liberties in a multi-cultural society that is becoming increasingly secular. This work provides an ethical framework in which euthanasia and assisted suicide can be evaluated. These issues are on the radar indicating a collision course with Christian values. It is time for Christians to be …

JOURNEY WITH JESUS THROUGH THE MESSAGE OF MARK: Experience the Ministry of Jesus in a Spiritually Captivating WayJOURNEY WITH JESUS THROUGH THE MESSAGE OF MARK

Journey with Jesus through the Message of Mark is an insightful and engaging survey of Mark‘s Gospel, exploring each major section of the text along with key themes. It is a work that can be enjoyed by laypersons as well as pastors and teachers. Pastors will find the abundant use …

ANGELS & DEMONS: The Bible AnswersANGELS & DEMONS The Bible Answers

What are angels & demons? Can angels help us? What does the Bible say about angels? What is the truth about angels? Can Angels affect your life? Who were the “sons of God” in Genesis 6:2? Who were the Nephilim in Genesis 6:2? Who is Michael the archangel? Can Satan the Devil control …

Bible Doctrines

WHERE ARE THE DEAD? Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian FaithWHERE ARE THE DEAD? Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian Faith

What is the Bible’s viewpoint? Without delving into an endless stream of what man has said, Andrews looks at what the Bible says about death and the like. Why do we grow old and die? What happens at death? Is there life after death, or is this all there is? Do we have an immortal soul? …

IDENTIFYING THE ANTICHRIST: The Man of Lawlessness and the Mark of the Beast RevealedIDENTIFYING THE ANTICHRIST: The Man of Lawlessness and the Mark of the Beast Revealed

Herein Andrews will give the reader exactly what the Bible offers on exposing who the Antichrist and the Man of Lawlessness are. If we look at the texts that refer to the antichrist and the man of lawlessness, we will have lines of evidence that will enable us to identify them. Why is it …

UNDERSTANDING THE CREATION ACCOUNT: Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian FaithUNDERSTANDING THE CREATION ACCOUNT: Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian Faith

Throughout the Scriptures, God is identified as the Creator. He is the One “who created the heavens (He is the God who formed the earth and made it, He established it.” [Isa 45:18] He is the One “who forms mountains and creates the wind” (Am 4:13) and is the One “who made the heaven and …

The SECOND COMING of CHRIST: Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian FaithThe SECOND COMING of CHRIST: Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian Faith

The information herein is based on the disciples coming to Jesus privately, saying, “Tell us, (1) when will these things be, and (2) what will be the sign of your coming, and (3) of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:3) What will end? When will the end come? What comes after the end? Who …

WHAT IS HELL? Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian FaithWHAT IS HELL? Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian Faith

What Really Is Hell? What Kind of Place is Hell? What Really Happens at Death? What Did Jesus Teach About Hell? How Does Learning the Truth About Hell Affect You? Who Goes to Hell? What Is Hell? Is It a Place of Eternal Torment? Does God Punish People in Hellfire? Do the Wicked Suffer in …

Miracles? - Do They Still Happen Today?: God Miraculously Saving People’s Lives, Apparitions, Speaking In Tongues, Faith HealingMIRACLES – DO THEY STILL HAPPEN TODAY? God Miraculously Saving People’s Lives, Apparitions, Speaking In Tongues, Faith Healing 

Miracles were certainly a part of certain periods in Bible times. What about today? Are miracles still taking place. There are some very important subjects that surround this area of discussion that are often misunderstood. Andrews will answer such questions as does God step in and solve …

HOMOSEXUALITY - The BIBLE and the CHRISTIAN: Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian FaithHOMOSEXUALITY – The BIBLE and the CHRISTIAN: Basic Bible Doctrines of the Christian Faith

Today there are many questions about homosexuality as it relates to the Bible and Christians. What does the Bible say about homosexuality? Does genetics, environment, or traumatic life experiences justify homosexuality? What is God’s will for people with same-sex attractions? Does the …

Christian Fiction

THE DIARY OF JUDAS ISCARIOT: How to Keep Jesus at Arm's LengthTHE DIARY OF JUDAS ISCARIOT: How to Keep Jesus at Arm’s Length

…desert but none of such significance as a handful of scrolls retrieved from a buried Roman satchel (presumed stolen) at this site. The discovery has since come to be known as ‘The Diary of Judas Iscariot.’ In The Diary of JudasIscariot Owen Batstone relates the observations and feelings …

THE RAPTURE: God’s Unwelcomed WrathTHE RAPTURE: God’s Unwelcomed Wrath

Kevin Trill struggles with the notion that he may have missed the Rapture. With nothing but the clothes on his back and a solid gold pocket watch, he sets off towards Garbor, a safe haven for those who haven’t yet taken the mark of thebeast. While on his way to Garbor, he meets up …

SEEKERS AND DECEIVERS: Which One are You? It Is Time to Join the Fight!

There grew an element in the valley that did not want to be ruled by the Light of the Word. Over time, they convinced the people to reject it. As they started to reject this Light, the valley grew dim and the fog rolled in. The people craved the darkness rather than the Light because they were evil. They did not want to  …

The Shadow Flames of Uluru: Book ONE in the CHAOS DOWN UNDER 

When an ancestor saddles them with the responsibility to purge Australia of a demon threatening to wipe our humanity with black flames, fraternal siblings Amber and Michael Hauksby lay their lives on the line. As the world crumbles around them into chaos, and ancient marsupials wreak havoc in their hometown, they must journey into …

WRITE PLACE, RIGHT TIME: The Pre-Apocalyptic Misadventure of a Freelance Journalist 

“Write Place, Right Time” follows the pre-apocalyptic misadventures of freelance journalist Don Lamplighter. While on what he expects to be a routine Monday night trip to a village board meeting, Lamplighter’s good nature compels him to help a stranded vehicle. Little does he know that by saving one of the car’s occupants, he sets forth a chain of what to him seem to be unrelated events where he must use his physical and social skills to save himself and others from precarious situations.

FOOTNOTES

[1] Reggie McNeal, The Present Future (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2003), 51.

[2] Mark Mittelberg, Building a Contagious Church (Grand Rapids: zondervan, 2001), 34.

[4] Dean Gilliland, “Contextualization,” in The Evangelical Dictionary of World Missions, edited by Scott Moreau (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2000).

[6] What is Contextualization? Presenting the Gospel in .., http://www.christianitytoday.com/edstetzer/2014/october/what-is-contextualizatio (accessed February 04, 2016).

[7] Putman, David; Ed Stetzer (2006-05-01). Breaking the Missional Code: Your Church Can Become a Missionary in Your Community (p. 181). B&H Publishing. Kindle Edition.

[8] Newton, Phil A. (May 2007). “The Package Matters: Problems with the Church Growth Movement”. Areopagus Journal (Apologetics Resource Center) (Troublesome Movements in the 21st–Century Church).

Seeker-Sensitive Problems, http://brfwitness.freeservers.com/Articles/1994v29n6.htm (accessed February 04, 2016).

[9] While there are both men’s and women’s styles of the hanbok, our discussion focuses on women’s.

[10] Putman, David; Ed Stetzer (2006-05-01). Breaking the Missional Code: Your Church Can Become a Missionary in Your Community (pp. 91-92). B&H Publishing. Kindle Edition.

[11] Lit rivers

[12] Lit rivers

[13] Lit seduction

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