A Christmas Gift

What’s Christmas time to you but a time for paying bills without money; a time for finding yourself a year older, but not an hour richer; a time for balancing your books and having every item in ’em through a round dozen of months presented dead against you? If I could work my will,” said Scrooge indignantly, “every idiot who goes about with ‘Merry Christmas’ on his lips, should be boiled with his own pudding, … Continue reading

The Gift

(Originally printed “The Gift” In the November/December 1996 MCOI Journal) What is it about Christmas that draws us every year to celebrations of this holiday? What is so special about Christmas? Christmas is a special time because of the happiness it brings. It’s a time of giving and receiving, a family time, a time when we feel especially close to friends and loved ones. It is a time of happy reminiscing; remembering the carefree happy … Continue reading

What Bill Gothard and His Followers Still Don’t Get About Grace

When debating Gothardites on the topic of grace, often the first text they cite is James 4:6b: “‘God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble,’” (ESV). It is also usually the one text they keep coming back to in support of their assertion that grace is not freely given, unmerited favor, but rather is a desire and power to do God’s will that is earned or merited. When someone rightly tells them that … Continue reading

Bill Gothard ’s Evangelical Talmud, Part 3: Gothard and the Law

 (This originally appeared in the July/August 1998 edition of the MCOI Journal beginning on page 6) In Parts 1 and 2, we assessed some of the teachings of Bill Gothard and his Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP) through a chronological approach. While we wish to maintain that basic perspective in this series, this article covers such a vast and pervasive topic in Gothard’s ministry that it will depart from the chronological format. To evaluate … Continue reading

Amazing Grace

On Wednesday, June 17, 2015, the news services across the nation lit up with news of a multiple shooting – cold blooded murder in a South Carolina church, Emanuel AME Church in Charleston. The pastor, Clementa C. Pinckney (who, as it happens is also a State Senator) and eight church members were killed were killed by 21 year old Dylann Roof. Roof is white, all his victims were black, and there seemed to be no … Continue reading

The Salvation Puzzle

(Originally printed in the November/December 1996 Issue MCOI Journal) The ICC (International Churches of Christ) are orthodox with regard to such doctrines as the deity of Christ, the Tri-unity of the Godhead, inspiration of the Scriptures, etc.. They err primarily in their view of salvation and authoritarian control. As we have pointed out in previous issues, the ICC holds that one must be a disciple with a discipler over him before he can become a … Continue reading