Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 10/31/20

Today, we commemorate Reformation Day. Five-hundred-and-three years ago, on October 31st, 1517, Martin Luther took the bold step of nailing his 95 theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany, beginning a movement whose goal was to restore the New Testament Gospel of salvation by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone. It would take subsequent Reformers to chip away at remaining vestiges of Roman error, but the Holy Spirit used Luther and the other early Reformers in a great way. Most of today’s hipster, megachurch pastors don’t mention the Reformation because it contradicts their watered-down, seeker-friendly, ecumenical messages.

Both conservative and progressive Catholics have been trying to process the October 21st publicization of pope Francis’ radical allowance for civil unions for same-sex couples. Some conservatives (like apologist, Dave Armstrong) continue making excuses for the pope while others are finally crossing over the line and joining with those who already proclaim Francis a “bad pope” and even a heretic.

The Roman Catholic church hasn’t yet officially endorsed the alleged Marian apparitions at Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina, although pope Francis did authorize pilgrimages to the site beginning in May, 2019. The Franciscans who advise the alleged visionaries and the local bishop have been at odds since the supposed apparitions began back in 1981. Why? Because remarks attributed to the alleged Marian apparition have been critical of the bishop.

It’s not a widely-followed practice among U.S. Catholics, but in European Catholic countries, on November 2, All Souls’ Day, families attend mass and visit cemeteries to light candles and pray for their deceased loved ones in hopes that they will be “sprung” from purgatory prison. Because of COVID-19, the Vatican has decreed that families can obtain the plenary “get out of jail free card” indulgence for their loved one/s throughout the entire month of November. What about the alleged souls in purgatory who don’t have family to “spring” them? May this type of inane, arbitrary legalism raise questions in the minds of Catholics. It was Catholicism’s anti-Biblical teaching on indulgences that initially prompted Martin Luther to write his 95 theses.

In these secret Vatican-Beijing accords, pope Francis is allowing the Chinese communists to install quisling bishops from its pro-government Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association. I’m still not sure what the Vatican gets out of these deals.

Large segments of “evangelicalism” are moving away from the Bible and right doctrine to this Hillsong-ish, hands-in-the-air, religious hystericism and experientialism.

32 thoughts on “Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 10/31/20

    1. Thanks, Mandy. Yup, sixty-years ago Pentecostalism was an aberrant sect, but now it’s close to becoming the “face” of evangelicalism. So many bad beliefs and practices.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I also see reports of notable growth of Pentecostal churches in Africa and Asia. People are attracted to the health & wealth/prosperity gospel for obvious reasons.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That is true. The West will be held accountable for bringing the nations the prosperity gospel. Biblical/theology training is a massive request of the churches in Africa. You wouldn’t be surprised by the results if you ever Google world’s richest pastors. I have spent a lot of time over seas so this hits home for me. I have seen first hand what bad theology does to an area. I have also experienced people groups who will not allow missions because they were turned off by Moron and JW missionaries.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. 1.) Happy 503rd Reformation Day!

    2.) THis pope has set an precedence with RC’s view on LGBT issues

    3.) Crazy to hear of RC kicking out priests. Honestly they should have done that with sexual predatory priests

    Liked by 1 person

    1. RE: Happy Reformation Day!
      Thank you and the same to you! I’m grateful for Luther and the other Reformers (and pre-Reformers) who took a stand for the Gospel knowing they might pay with their lives.

      RE: Pope and same-sex civil unions
      It’s been 10 days since the news and still no “clarification” from Francis or Vatican spokespersons. That’s how Francis roles out these reforms – craftily. Yup, this is huge. Conservatives are enraged, but trapped. They still don’t know how to oppose their “holy father.”

      RE: Franciscan excommunicated
      Pilgrims travel to Medjugorje thinking it’s such a holy, spiritual place. But behind the scenes the Franciscans and the local prelates are fighting like cats and dogs.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I read a book a few years ago which we talked about before about inner Vatican politics; the fact there’s no clarification from Rome with the PR spokesmen shows there’s something going on in Rome with the statement being made is made to stand, without appeasing the Conservatives while also going along with the secular world.
        Grateful for the Reformation day also! I think even non-Reformed Christians should be grateful!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Francis is making these “reforms” so craftily and guilefully. There’s no official declaration so nothing for the conservatives to rally against. He did something similar when he lifted the ban on communion for remarried divorcees.

        Luther and the Reformation weren’t mentioned much at our old IFB church as I remember. Baptist’s have a peculiar relationship with church history. Few know or would admit the movement started with Anglican separatist, John Smyth. A lot of Baptists wouldn’t categorize themselves as Protestants.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Don’t know if you ever heard the term “Landmark Baptists”? They believe there was an uninterrupted line of Baptist fellowships going all the way back to the apostles. It’s interesting how the Baptists see themselves as apart from the Reformation and Protestantism.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Yup. I think we may have discussed that landmark/”trail of blood” view previously. I believe many Baptists held that view 100 years ago, but it’s fallen out of favor. Well, I guess ANY view on church history has fallen out of favor these days.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow Tom . Interesting stories .
    Medjugorje apparitions are close to my heart since God used the deception I was in to convict me and bring me to His Son.

    Isn’t the pope supposed to be infallible ? Why are conservatives opposing him ? 🤷🏻‍♀️

    Hillsong is a cult . I don’t even think it qualifies as Pentecostal anymore . 🙄

    Thank you Tom.
    God bless you

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the good comments, Crissy!

      RE: Medjugorje
      I’m happy the Lord used this deception to lead you to true faith and salvation in Jesus Christ.

      RE: Catholic conservatives and pope Francis
      Yup, the conservatives are caught in an impossible Catch-22. Fidelity to the infallible papacy is one of their most cherished doctrines and Francis has pulled the rug out from under them.

      RE: Hillsong a cult
      I’m sure you’re aware of the details more than me. Whereas as Saddleback and Willow Point were once THE models for the seeker/church growth model, I’m guessing Hillsong eclipsed them several years ago.

      Thank you, Crissy, and God bless you, too!


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