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The Bible and The Benedict Option – Part III

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty. [2 Corinthians 6:17-18. KJV]

In the Old Testament, God’s requirement for the Israelites was separation from the people of other nations whose lifestyles and practices would influence and corrupt His chosen people. In the New Testament, God still requires His people to separate themselves from the world as we see above in 2 Corinthians 6:17-18. But New Testament commands are not for separation from nations but separation (1) from world systems (by which is meant the “beliefs, lifestyles, and God-defying ways of doing things”), (2) from those in the church who are disobedient and defiant toward God and refuse to turn from their own ways, and (3) “from false teachers, churches, or religious systems that promote ungodly beliefs and deny the truth of God’s Word as revealed in the Bible.” [1]

The books of the New Testament were written in the first century following the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Soon thereafter began the Christian diaspora throughout […] Continue Reading…



The Bible and The Benedict Option – Part II

Rod Dreher believes that Christian participation in a hostile secular culture is no longer possible and that conservative Christians must develop a unique, countercultural way to live their lives and raise their families in order to hold on to their faith and their values. To fight the world’s efforts to assimilate Christianity and infuse it with the world’s value system, conservative Christians must have a paradigm shift as they rethink how they live their lives within the family, their church, and community. Dreher calls this strategic withdrawal from a hostile culture “The Benedict Option.”[1] Although Dreher rightly assesses the need for greater separation between the church and the world’s value system in many spheres of life, the implementation of many of Dreher’s options based on the Rule of Benedict incorporates several Catholic doctrines and practices that stand in opposition to the Bible and Protestant doctrines. In Part II, we shall examine some of the most important points of conflict.

Monasticism

The heart of Dreher’s effort at separating the Christian life from the world rests on Catholic monasticism. Monasticism began with Antony, an Egyptian peasant, who went alone into the desert and after thirty-five years emerged as a spiritual […] Continue Reading…



The Bible and The Benedict Option – Part I

In 2017, Rod Dreher published his book The Benedict Option – A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation.[1] Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. Dreher is Roman Catholic and received book endorsements from high level Catholic officials as well as favorable endorsements from several well-respected Protestant conservatives including Russell Moore, President, The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. Moore wrote, “I’m more missionary than monastery, but I think every Christian should read this book. Rod Dreher is brilliant, prophetic, and wise. Even if you don’t agree with everything in this book, there are warnings here to heed and habits here to practice.”[2]

Reverend Moore may be correct in his assessment that there are nuggets of wisdom that may be gleaned from Dreher’s book. But Moore’s encouragement for Christians to read Dreher’s book ignores two significant dangers for the typical modern evangelical Christian. The first is the pandemic biblical illiteracy of the evangelical church in America and the remainder of Western civilization. Some have said that the knowledge of the Bible across the Christian world is the lowest since the beginning of the Protestant Reformation five hundred years ago. The second danger […] Continue Reading…



The Shack – False doctrine

One of the great afflictions of the modern evangelical church in America is the absence of biblical knowledge by a large majority of professing Christians in the last decades of the twentieth century and to the present day. This pervasive ignorance of the Bible is consistent with the spirit of the age in which constant and thematic biblical preaching and teaching have substantially declined in many evangelical churches. The preaching of the message of the Bible has been dumbed down and therefore is made a husk without the life sustaining core from which the Christian finds spiritual nourishment. As a result a large segment of American Christianity does not have a solid grasp of the basic elements of the faith as taught in Scripture and confirmed by the doctrinal understandings of their faith. Writing in his first letter to the Corinthians, the Apostle Paul spoke of the consequences for this remarkable lack of familiarity with the meat of the Word.

Brothers and sisters, I could not address you as people who live by the Spirit but as people who are still worldly—mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not […] Continue Reading…



The Circle Maker – Take heed that no man deceive you – Part II

Because we are living at the end of the last days as foretold by Christ to His disciples, Christians must be especially vigilant to guard against false teachers and prophets. To guard against such, Christians must follow the example of the Bereans spoken of in Acts 17:10-13. The Bereans were described as noble and honorable men and women who closely examined what they were taught in the light of the truth of God’s Word. We have attempted to follow the Berean’s example in this two part series in which we are examining the teachings of Mark Batterson in The Circle Maker. In Part I we found significant evidence that The Circle Maker has mixed the Word of God with fables, false doctrines, and false teaching. Part II will conclude our examination of The Circle Maker.

Misinterpreting the Bible

Batterson attempts to include in God’s promises for the church (which makes them eligible for circling) certain descriptive verses that teach as opposed to prescriptive verses that command us.[1] One example exposes Batterson’s error.

The legend of Honi the circle maker was like a revelation of the power of prayer…I started to circle everything and everyone in prayer. It gave me a new […] Continue Reading…