I love teachers, and I am one. My wife is one. Teachers are great, and we need them. But, you should never trust what they teach you.
And yes, that includes myself.
There are too many corrupt, lying liars who are posing as good-hearted and well-meaning pastors, seminarians, theologians, professors, instructors, writers and YouTubers. And, some of these ‘lying liars’ don’t know that they are a source of lies. They have deceived themselves, and are passing that deception on to you. And, that deception is killing us.
So, the best thing that I can do is encourage you to never trust me, or anyone who is in my position.
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Never Trust a Teacher
YouTube shortlink: https://youtu.be/gTPaz2UJ324
I have a thing about deception. I really do. I hate it. I despise it. And, I want to stamp it out, wherever I see it. And, I am horrified at the the thought that I could be a source of deception.
Nothing scares me more, than the thought that I could lead you into deception. And, there is very little that scares me. I’ve had bombs go off down the road. Guns have been pointed at me. I’ve been arrested (over a misunderstanding). I’ve been thrown out of High School. I’ve even had Mrs. Little frown at me!
(When a man loves a woman,
he gives her the power
to scare him to DEATH.)
But, there is nothing that scares me more, than the thought that I would cause you damage in how you think, what you think, how you believe and Who you believe in. I will stand before the Lord one day and answer for every word that I write and say. If I should lead you astray, I will suffer loss for that. I am also concerned about YOUR welfare.
If I say or write something that causes you to make a bad decision, you could suffer great harm. And, you could pass on the errors that I told you, spreading that harm far and wide. And, I know that I am capable of doing something like this. And THAT is why I implore you to never trust me. Never.
Be Able To Challenge What I Write And Say
Always, always check to see if I am right. I know that I talk about some pretty difficult stuff, and you might not be able to check on everything for yourself. But, my hope is that your understanding will grow to the point where you can challenge some of what I write and say.
Some of you have been able to do that, from day one. And, I count it a blessing and honor to have such clear-thinking readers who can point out errors – or, um… the ‘possible’ errors. My hope is that I always give such valuable readers the honor and respect that they deserve.
The Sophisticated Deceiver Would Say This
Of course, as I write this, I also know that a sophisticated deceiver, would write all that I have written here, and more. The best deceivers will also claim that you should never trust them, and that you should think for yourself. So, don’t be lured into complacency, just because I warn you against trusting me.
Please remember that we will all stand before the Lord one day, and answer for what we do or say. You won’t be able to blame me for deceiving you or tricking you into disobeying God. You won’t be able to claim that I taught you wrongly, since YOU are responsible for learning how to tell the difference between truth and falsehood.
Your Responsibility As A Christian
Your responsibility as a Christian is to love the truth. That responsibility cannot be delegated to anyone else, if you wish to be a responsible and obedient follower of Christ. The alternative is to remain a child in spiritual things. And, that’s pretty much the main point.
Do you wish to remain a vulnerable child in all things spiritual? (And, physical?)
Then, ignore everything that I’m saying here. If you want to remain immature in the spiritual and physical, place your trust in your fallible pastors and teachers. If you want to remain stunted and ignorant, you can – and most people do.
Yes, that’s right, being ignorant and deceived is a choice. You can choose to never question what you hear in church. You can choose to never question what you are taught in school. And, we can see all around us a society that doesn’t question what it reads in newspapers or sees on their TV screens.
Unfortunately, if you are old enough, the choice to be – and become – ignorant and deceived might have been made so long ago, that you do not remember that choice. But, I can see that choice, whenever someone complains about my criticism of the great Dr. So-and-So. I know of too many pastors who are horrified at the thought that I would disagree with their favorite theologian. When I see that, I can tell that a choice to be ignorant and deceived has been made – but, so far in the past, that they do not recall making it.
I am reminded of this by a rather surprising event that happened a couple of days ago. In fact, as I write this, it was literally yesterday.
Bruce left a comment about what I had said last week. He said:
This week you referenced the lineage back to the early church that your Baptist church enjoys and I was curious if there are reference materials, books or even internet sites that deal with the history of what I have heard called the “Remnant Church”.
I have tried to not mention this ‘lineage’ too often, since people can place more importance on THAT, than on what Christ commands of us. And, I have had to undo a tremendous amount of false teaching, because certain writers – over a hundred years ago – started to emphasize something too much. In fact, they started to replace sound Biblical understanding with the less sound, human logic.
The men responsible for this bit of Bible twisting were:
Both of those men had good intentions and a lot of truth to back those intentions, but they made the mistake of using human wisdom to make the Bible say something that it does not say.
What I am talking about is Landmarkism, and Bruce’s comment led me back to ideas that I had not thought about in years. So, I did a search and clicked this link:
I was a bit surprised that Wikipedia would have an entry about the Landmark Baptists. There wasn’t a lot in that entry, but it was still a good jumping off point. And, I recognized a lot of names that had been bandied about in my younger years. My Dad certainly knows a lot more than I do and had some of his own battles with their acolytes.
Then, when I got to the bottom of that page, I saw a name that I was very familiar with:
LeRoy Benjamin Hogue
I was more than a little surprised. There cannot be very many LeRoy Hogues out there – especially a LeRoy Hogue who can write a dissertation on a uniquely Baptist idea. It had to be him, and sure enough… it was.
Who am I referring to?
My pastor here in Taiwan. And, he is only one of very few men that I can call pastor without reservation. He is a fantastic example of what every pastor should be – kind, patient, gentle, passionate, a leader, someone who loves the Lord with all his heart and loves each and every one of us. Our church here in Taiwan has been greatly blessed to have him as our pastor, and our loss will be great, when the Lord sends him back to Oklahoma.
Here is that dissertation that he wrote more than 50 years ago:
Like so many historical movements, it has its roots in the mid-19th century. I partly blame the steam-powered printing press, that made printing so cheap and easy. But, the real blame lies with the teachers and pastors and writers who encouraged a trust in people, and not a trust in God and the Bible.
Never Be A Parosh (Pharisee)
I don’t want to get too involved in explaining the errors of Landmarkism. There are plenty of resources out there that can do that for me. And, the Landmark Baptists have a lot of things right, so I’m not really bashing them. I actually agree that our spiritual lineage is unbroken and should be unbroken. In fact, my biggest problem with this movement is that most of them are hard-hearted Paroshim (Pharisees). And, they taught me to be one of them.
Please. Never be a Pharisee (Parosh). Never. The Christian Paroshim have earned the wrath of God, because they lost their ability to love, to forgive and to understand the core principles of the Bible. As I said to Bruce:
Some of those guys are REALLY mean-spirited.
They know their Bible, but they became far too proud of themselves. And, I fear that many of them have lost everything.
How did they do that?
By placing their trust in a teacher.
These men did not ask themselves whether there were any errors in this Landmark idea. They didn’t stop to ask whether they were inserting human logic, and ignoring the logic of God. And, you might think that their errors are small. And, I would agree with you.
Just remember that big errors ALWAYS start out small. ALWAYS. In fact, you can’t get to The Big Lie, without the conditioning that you receive from a lot of small lies. When I wrote about Rick Wiles a couple of weeks ago, I knew that he didn’t become a deceiver overnight. That level of deception takes time and starts out small. And, Rick Wiles is REALLY mean-spirited.
What Rick Wiles Did To Zach
What Rick did to Zach Drew was despicable. How dare he trash a young man like that. Sure, Zach was probably unwise. You might even claim that Zach was incredibly foolish. But, his errors and foolishness were a private thing, and I’m not even certain that it happened the way that Rick described. Here is what I mean:
I fast-forwarded to just after the 14 minute mark, where Rick lays into Zach. And, I am horrified by this. The arrogance, pride and venom in the next few minutes just flies out of Rick’s mouth.
Never listen to a man that is full of so much poison.
Without Love, You Have Nothing
I do not care about how much truth someone like Rick has…
I don’t care about that person’s intelligence or his command of the facts…
…If that person doesn’t have love.
This should be our guide:
If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am become sounding brass, or a clanging cymbal.
And if I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
And if I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and if I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profiteth me nothing.
Love suffereth long, and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not its own, is not provoked, taketh not account of evil;
rejoiceth not in unrighteousness, but rejoiceth with the truth;
beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
– 1 Corinthians 13:1-7 – (ASV)
note: I’m using the ASV, instead of the KJV, because people have stumbled over the KJV’s use of ‘charity’ instead of ‘love’. We don’t use ‘charity’ as a synonym for love anymore, and the original Greek word is ‘agape’ – pronounced like ‘ah-GAH-pee’.
I’m sorry, Rick. But, you don’t have any love. I’m sorry, my Landmark Baptist brothers, few of you have any love. I’m sorry, post-trib brothers, but few of you have any love. I’m sorry, but if you follow a teacher that does not have any love, you will be infected by their lack of love. And then, you will lose everything.
I HAD A TEACHER: A Bitter And Personal Example
I have one more example, and it’s an especially bitter one.
I had a teacher. A man who I cared about a great deal. In fact, both he and his wife were very close to me and taught me much in the early years of my Christian walk. His wife was very knowledgeable, but a false teacher who valued herself more than God. This man’s wife had much truth, but no love. She twisted his faith in Christ and even poisoned his relationship with other Christians – and even their children.
Then, one day, she left him. And, for ten years he was free from the poison that she injected into his spiritual life. He began to fellowship with other Christians. He began to attend a church that was led by a loving and kind pastor. He began to flourish as a follower of Christ. His relationship with his children improved. And, for those ten years, he was a true follower of Christ in every way that I could tell.
Then, his wife came back to him.
I remember the day when I heard that she was back. I was worried, and my worries came true in every way. My teacher stopped his fellowship with other Christians. He stopped going to church. His relationship with his children began to fail again.
My old teacher is still alive, but he has lost everything. Yes, he has the woman that he loves. But, he sacrificed his relationship with God. He and his wife think that they are Christian. They’ll certainly tell you this with great conviction. But, their fruit is poison.
I Have Learned The Hard Way
I have learned in the worst way possible, never to trust a teacher. No matter how much you might love and respect your teachers… No matter how right they are in so many areas… you must always test the truth of what they say. Always.
Never. NEVER accept what someone says at face value. NEVER. Always check to see if a certain thing is true. Read the Bible for yourself, so that – when a spiritual ambush occurs – you will have the tools and armor to defend yourself.
My own spiritual life was poisoned by this wife of my teacher. And, my teacher allowed it. And, for far too long, my fruit was bitter and damaging to others. My life was not pointing people to Christ. I was not reflecting the light of Christ into a dark and dying world.
I am grateful that the Lord dragged me away from this couple and set me on a different path. If what I write or say, is of ANY value to you, it is only by the Grace of God. I am a living, walking, talking example of why you should…
…NEVER. TRUST. A. TEACHER.
I truly hope that you’ll be ready for this
A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished. – Proverbs 22:3
If you find a flaw in my reasoning, have a question, or wish to add your own viewpoint, leave a comment on the website. Your input is truly welcome.
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