“Bible Answer Man” “converts” to Eastern Orthodoxy


Way back in the day, Walter Martin’s Christian Research Institute (CRI) was at the forefront of evangelical apologetics. While Martin’s standard reference, “Kingdom of the Cults,” didn’t include Roman Catholicism as a cult, Martin made it quite clear in several other other published works and interviews that he considered Catholicism an apostate church and that no one could be saved by following its standard theology of salvation by sacramental grace and merit. Refer to Martin’s “The Roman Catholic Church in History” (1960).

Martin died in 1989 and was succeeded as president of CRI by Hank Hanegraaff. Hanegraaff’s tenure has been marked by several controversies but perhaps most disturbing was his acceptance of Roman Catholicism as a Christian denomination. Hanegraaff and CRI associates, Elliot Miller and Ken Samples, took a decidedly ecumenical approach to Catholicism even though they acknowledged there were still many areas of disagreement between evangelicalism and Rome (e.g., how is a person justified?). CRI’s influence has declined since Hanegraaff took over and relatively few evangelicals are even aware of it at this point.

In the article below we learn that Hanegraff has recently converted to Eastern Orthodoxy, which is basically Roman Catholicism without the pope. Eastern Orthodoxy also teaches that salvation is by sacramental grace and merit. Hanegraaff admits in the article that he has been surreptitiously attending a Greek Orthodox church for over two years.

Why would someone who at one time claimed to have accepted Jesus Christ as Savior by faith alone be attracted to the weak and beggerly elements of a works-religion? I don’t believe that anyone who genuinely accepts Christ as Savior and is indwelt by the Holy Spirit would ever choose to return to the chains and slavery of Egypt. But the unsaved are often attracted to religious pomp, ceremony, ritual, and formalism and that is what Hanegraff has chosen. We should not be alarmed by this. There are many in the pulpits and pews of evangelical churches every Sunday who have never genuinely accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior.

“What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.” – 2 Peter 2:22

Hanegraaff needs to be forthright with his audience and change the name of his radio show from “Bible Answer Man” to “Greek Orthodox Answer Man.”

‘Bible Answer Man’ Hank Hanegraaff Chrismated Into Eastern Orthodoxy


25 thoughts on ““Bible Answer Man” “converts” to Eastern Orthodoxy

  1. Thank you! Amen to this article! Yesterday I wrote an article titled “how I almost became a Catholic” that addresses some of this as well. It’s a lot of pomp and ritual and show, less biblical

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Emma. I appreciated your post as well. I believe there are some Catholics who have genuinely accepted Christ, but they have done so in spite of their church’s standard theology. Look forward to reading your posts in the future.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. “There are not one hundred people in the United States who hate The Catholic Church, but there are millions who hate what they wrongly perceive the Catholic Church to be.” – Fulton Sheen


      2. I’ve seen this quote from Sheen often. Speaking of Sheen, have the dioceses of NYC and Peoria stopped fighting over his corpse yet? Such unbiblical silliness. Not to brag but I would hazard a guess that I know more about the RCC than 95% of the laity in the pews. I love Catholics but I hate their church which teaches a false gospel of salvation by sacramental grace and merit.


      3. Perhaps you do. It saddens me that people think the Catholic Church is the enemy, when it is more likely your ally. The real enemy is the dictatorship of relativism.


      4. I would say most evangelicals don’t have a problem spotting post-modern relativists, but some do have a problem embracing Catholics who talk about “grace” and “faith” but teach a false gospel of sacramental grace and merit.


      5. I’m in the middle of the Calvin-Arminius camps. Passages in the Bible refer to both election and free will. The bottom line is we must accept Jesus Christ as our Savior by faith alone, with no plea like the tax collector in Luke 18. I’m sure we’ll learn the details later. Most Catholics aren’t concerned about the freewill-election debate because their church now teaches even “good” atheists will merit Heaven, an unscriptural doctrine from an apostate church.


      6. If the crucifixion and resurrection happened in 33 AD, and the first book of the New Testament was Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians, written in 51 AD, how did those first Christians worship without the New Testament for those 18 years?


      7. What is being said there is that no man can judge another man’s soul. Sometimes people who call themselves atheists might not even know the meaning of the word. It is within God’s love and mercy to forgive. Is it not?


      8. Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God has made him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son. And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
        1 John 5:10-12


      9. Am I allowed to interpret that myself, or does it have only one meaning? If it only has one meaning, who gets to decide?


      10. The meaning is very clear but you are spiritually blind.

        Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.- 1 John 5:12

        Pope Pius IX condemned democratic forms of government and freedom of religion in his Syllabus of Errors. Modern popes of course do not follow the Syllabus. Who is right?

        Pope Boniface VIII declared only Catholics who submitted to the pope could merit salvation while modern popes say even “good” atheists can be saved. Who is right? BTW, Jesus said no one is “good” but God, which is why He had to die on the cross for our sins.

        Francis says remarried Catholics may possibly receive the eucharist under pastoral guidance. Cardinals Burke, Brandmuller, Caffarra, and Meisnerargues argue Francis is in opposition to John Paul II, Benedict XVI and all previous popes. Who is right?

        Popes of yesteryear sanctioned or turned a blind eye to the Inquisition, the Crusades, persecution of Protestants, forced baptisms, and persecution of Jews. Modern popes wouldn’t dream of such intolerances. Who is right?

        Popes previous to Vatican II denounced Protestants as heretics and anathematized them to hell but now they are called “separated brethren” in “ecclesiastical communities.” Which viewpoint is the correct one?

        The alleged first pope, Peter, shunned Gentiles while eating to please the Judaizers, a serious compromise of the faith. Paul confronted him. Who was right? Paul of course. Peter was not infallible on an important matter of faith. By the way, the modern equivalent of the Judaizers are Catholics who mix works with (so-called) faith.

        So which era magisterium do you support exactly because they are not at all in agreement?


      11. Not far from my house is a park with a very old live oak tree. Some are as tall as 40 ft and have large solid branches that bend and turn, some turning upward and some down and left and right.

        This tree came from a tiny acorn. It is currently not in the shape of a 40 ft tall and 40 ft wide acorn.

        The Church is the same way. It is a living growing thing. Like a tree responds to the elements, so has the Church responded to those who find it an irresistible target.

        Many people have tried to tear it down, and the people on the inside have not always done a good job keeping it whole. And yet the Holy Spirit guides it and has kept it going for 2000 years.

        The hate you show for the Catholic Church reminds me of MT 10:22.

        I hope that one day your livelihood is not based on bashing the Catholic Church. I think you will see that I am not as blind as you think I am.

        Happy Easter. He is risen!!

        Liked by 1 person

      12. Yes, He rose and conquered sin and death for all of those who receive Him as Savior by faith alone. Turn from your idolatrous institutional religion and accept Christ as your Savior by faith alone just as the repentant tax collector in Luke 18.


      13. Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”


    1. Thanks, Jim. I’ve had minimal exposure to Hanegraaff and CRI except for their ecumenical take on Catholicism, which makes sense given Hanegraaff’s conversion to Eastern Orthodoxy.

      Liked by 1 person

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