Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 9/19/20

There’s a bit of a controversy going on over at “Christianity Today” magazine because recently-retired editor, Mark Galli, has “converted” to Roman Catholicism. I’m not surprised. CT has always encouraged ecumenism with Rome, going back to its creation by Carl Henry and Billy Graham in 1956. The evangelical writers of the two articles above, Ed Stetzer and Roger Olson, react to Galli’s conversion with a degree of disapproval while also holding to the hopelessly incongruous view common to all ecumenical evangelicals, that says while Roman Catholicism is totally wrong about the doctrine of justification (how a person is saved), it is somehow still considered to be a Christian entity. Does not compute. How could a genuinely born-again believer swap salvation in Jesus Christ through faith alone for the chains of religious sacramentalism, legalism, and attempting to merit salvation? Impossible! This is a good example of how some who “profess” to be Christians and even hold leadership roles are tares among the wheat. Some people navigate within Christian circles and learn to “talk the talk” (Galli had earned a M.Div. from Fuller Theological Seminary), but never genuinely trust in Jesus Christ as Savior by faith alone.

The Roman Catholic church normally requires that all members must attend mass every Sunday under threat of eternal damnation. When the pandemic hit mid-March, the U.S. Catholic bishops each issued “dispensations,” allowing the Catholics in their diocese to miss mass without incurring mortal sin. Now that cases of COVID-19 are declining in some regions of the country, bishops are lifting the dispensations and ordering Catholics back to mass. “Those who deliberately fail to attend Sunday Mass commit a grave sin,” admonished the bishop of Milwaukee in anticipation of lifting his dispensation. How many Catholics will comply with the order to return to Sunday mass? Prior to the pandemic, only 13 percent of Catholics attended mandatory weekly mass, 20 percent attended at least once a month, and 67 percent attended no more than a few times a year if at all.

Catholics were encouraged to watch streaming mass services during the quarantine, although the RCC has always taught that the forgiveness of venial sins and the reception of graces were possible only by attending mass in-person. How many Catholics actually bothered to watch mass online on Sundays? In a recent survey, only 25 percent of young (between ages 18 and 35) Catholics surveyed said they participated “very often” or “somewhat” in mass online or on television during the pandemic.

The day is coming in the United States when the Bible will be categorized as “hate literature.”

After nearly 50 years, Charles Stanley announced that he is stepping down as pastor at First Baptist Church, Atlanta (SBC). I disagreed with Stanley on some issues (he was soft on ecumenism with Rome), but he was one of the very few TBN regulars who preached the genuine Gospel.

Southern Baptists are contemplating changing the name of their convention to “Great Commission Baptists.” SBC pastors who are faithful to the Gospel must also contemplate whether they can remain in an alliance in which Bible-denying liberalism is on the rise.

44 thoughts on “Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 9/19/20

  1. “ …Ed Stetzer and Roger Olson, react to Galli’s conversion with a degree of disapproval while also holding to the completely incongruous view common to all ecumenical evangelicals, that says while Roman Catholicism is totally wrong about the doctrine of justification (how a person is saved), it is somehow still considered to be a Christian entity. Does not compute.”
    *** DOES NOT COMPUTE*** AMEN! Why is that so hard all of the sudden to see? Satan twisting God’s words in these people’s minds?!
    Praise the Good Lord above for another great “Weekend Roundup!” He has inspired you through His Holy Spirit to take the time to put together!!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks, Beth. Yes, it is an absolute mystery to those of us who came out of the RCC and are saved in Jesus Christ how many “evangelicals” can embrace Catholicism as Christian when it unapologetically teaches salvation by sacramental grace and merit. It boggles the mind, but these ecumenists are spiritually blind and pawns of Satan and his deception.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I don’t know how I missed Galli and his conversion but thank you for sharing this! While I do not subscribe to CT I do check their website to see what is being promoted. I have never been a fan of Galli and his take on Christianity. While I appreciated reading Grentz and Olson’s “Who Needs Theology?” (sorry, WordPress won’t let me italicize the title) I am in agreement with you and Beth that “this does not compute.” How can a person be an “Evangelical Catholic” when Scripture “ranks” lower than tradition, RCC doctrine etc?! I realize that I read more “reformed” articles and blogs but so far there has been no comment or mention of this. Again, thank you for bringing this to my attention!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thanks, Mandy! I approach CT and other such venues (like the Christian Post) with great circumspection because I know how heartily they encourage ecumenism.
      Yes, “evangelical Catholic” and “born-again Catholic” are oxymorons; contradictions in terms. It is dichotomously impossible to hold to the Gospel of salvation by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone AND simultaneously hold to Rome’s false gospel of sacramental grace and merit. Can’t be done. One is right and one is wrong. Both cannot be right.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. What amazes me is how many traditions/denominations Galli has been a part of/tried. I am also suspect of CT, Christian Post, anything written on Patheos. I look at these sites to see what is being promoted so that when folks ask me about things I won’t be totally surprised. I shouldn’t let Galli irk me, but this has hit a nerve with me this morning!

        Liked by 4 people

  3. Again this question must always be asked, what is the point of converting to Romanism if according to their theology, a “good” Muslim, Atheist _____(insert belief) can be saved?????

    Liked by 4 people

      1. I had never heard of Mark Galli until a few days ago when some Romanists were parading him around as a trophy. It’s funny they don’t mention the stats showing that for every one Mark Galli, there are 6 to 7 who leave Romanism.

        As for Galli, I think this scripture verse is very appropriate:

        1 John 2:19 ESV
        They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.

        Liked by 4 people

    1. 👋🏼
      Hi brother! Hope the youth group meeting went well. Yeah, Martin became starry-eyed and lost his objectivity over the ecumenical overtures of pope John XXIII and Vatican II.
      Today I’ve been working on a few items on my wife’s to-do list including shoring up a leaky toilet. Did you ever change the wax seal at the base of a toilet? That’s some messy business.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think the last and only other time I changed one was 35 years ago so I suspect I’ll never have to change one again. Replacing one of those almost requires a bio-hazard outfit.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yikes! I guess my day is going easier than yours, I’m writing a Batman review right now from what I finished at 2 AM last night. Going to post this as my weekend reading review! Then later I will read your post

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Yay! Looking forward to your Batman review! I finally finished the book on the opioid pandemic and also B.B. Warfield’s refutation of continuationism. Started a fascinating book on the rise of Christian political ecumenism, something more up my alley.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. 1.) CT should be called CA: Christianity Astray. Sad to hear of another apostasy.

    2.) WIth less Catholic going to mass more often I hope Evangelicals take advantage of that by evangelizing Catholics.

    3.) Off tangent, did you hear about the Pope recently being more pro-LGBT? I saw someone shared an article but can’t find it anymore, wondering if you heard about a statement he made which I think is recent, to parents of those with LGBT kids

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for the good comments!

      RE: Christianity Astray
      Argh! I was trying to think of your brilliant name for that compromising fish wrapper but the brain neurons refused to comply. OMS!

      RE: Evangelizing Catholics
      Yes, many Catholics don’t want to attend mass, the most boring hour imaginable, but still have a curiosity about spiritual topics.

      RE: Pope and LGBT
      Yes, I saw that article but thanks for the heads-up. I see it as part of an overall plan by Francis and the progressives to integrate practicing LGBTers into the RCC.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. My mother in law shared her testimony today with our youth group and she left a strong old school Roman Catholic background; that prompted a good discussion with our kids about Romanism and also a biblical evaluation of their doctrines

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Thanks! It was a blessing to read that. Praise God your MIL was saved out of the RCC! While I agree that Christians in general should focus on the Word rather than get bogged down in the teachings of cults and apostate churches like the RCC (this was mentioned in the video discussion re: the World Mission Society Church of God), neither should Christians bury their heads in the sand and become hopelessly gullible as happened with Protestants re: the errors of Roman Catholicism.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. RE: I am glad in more ways than one that my mother in law never became a nun!

        LOL! I contemplated becoming a priest back in 4th and 5th grade, but in 6th grade I began to notice girls and even in my very young mind I realized a celibate lifestyle wasn’t going to be for me.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Re: Roger Olson

    I’ve read some of his blog posts and it’s pretty negative on Romanism and the Roman institution. Probably more charitable than I would have been but still negative for our times.

    He even got thrown out of an “ecumenical” dialogue event once for saying something negative about Romanists LOL .

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.patheos.com/blogs/rogereolson/2017/10/roman-catholic-church-catholic-enough/amp/
    I have attended and participated in several Protestant-RCC dialogue events and in every case I came away thinking this to myself: The Protestant participants (who read papers and some who responded to the read papers and some who simply sat in on the dialogue and voiced opinions during the Q&A time) never did actually say that the RCC has something to learn from Protestantism and needs to change to be more like Protestants. Every one of these dialogue events has been driven by RCC concerns and Protestant admissions of how much Protestants need the RCC to become more truly “catholic” (universal). At one such event, after listening for a day and a half I was invited to speak. I said that Catholics need to stop making exclusive claims and show more interest in Protestantism—as a tradition from which they can learn. I was then banned from the dialogue event. After the afternoon session, when I arrived for the dinner (to which I had been invited) I found that my name was no longer on the invitation list and I was not permitted to enter. The two organizers of the event were famous Lutheran theologians who I heard say (earlier in the day) that they would gladly join the RCC if the pope would just admit he is not infallible. My dissenting voice from that of the other Protestants was unwelcome, so I was literally thrown out of the dialogue event.

    Only one Protestant participant approached me after I spoke (during a break) and expressed appreciation for and qualified agreement with what I said. It was clear to me that the whole event (which was the second one to which I was invited in this series that was held at different institutions around central Minnesota) was pro-RCC and intended to draw Protestants of many denominations closer to the RCC. (I always wondered why the two Lutheran theologians invited me, an evangelical Baptist, if they didn’t want to hear that perspective.)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, SB. As per the original article I cited, Olson, like many Protestant ecumenists holds to totally dichotomous views, both rejecting Catholicism and embracing it.

      “Does this mean that I think evangelicals are better Christians than Catholics? No. Certainly not. They are just different. I respect adherence to distinctives and particularities. Evangelicals have ours and Catholics have theirs. We can respect each other, cooperate with each other, engage in congenial dialogue with each other (which I have many times), and even consider each other equally Christian. That does not mean we consider both equally right. Certainly not.”

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Re: even consider each other equally Christian.

        I didn’t see this part, thanks for highlighting. He is wrong as Rome has departed into apostasy.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. The Apostle makes it clear in Galatians 1/8 about those who preach a different gospel. And yet these evangelicals totally by pass the truth to shake hands with Rome. No fear of God.
    Thank you Tom for another great weekend round up!

    Liked by 2 people

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