The Challenge of Communication: Defining Terms

I often have to think about the challenge of communication, not only in our articles or public teaching but also in my day-to-day interaction with others. Sometimes when talking with someone, I get the distinct feeling that, although we may be using the same language, we somehow are not tracking together. Later, I may realize that the communication was not clear because we had different definitions, which had been assumed and not clarified. For example, … Continue reading

Not all glory – or is it?

From time to time we receive calls from individuals inquiring as to how they might become part of a ministry like this. As we talk with them, it often turns out that their vision of counter cult ministry is speaking in churches on issues of cults, other religions and discernment. Teaching in churches is a very important part of the ministry, but it is only one part. Some do not realize that long hours of … Continue reading

Preventing LIE-Ability

“A text without a context is a pretext.” This is something we learned very early on after becoming Christians. This applies to any literature – a novel, a newspaper, the Constitution and yes, certainly the Bible. A text is whatever it is we are reading. Context includes such questions as when the text was written? To whom was it written? Who wrote it or whose words were recorded in the document? How would the reader … Continue reading

Knowing … Mormon Style

(Originally printed in the Summer 2004 Issue of the MCOI Journal beginning on page 8 ) “Read from the Book of Mormon, and pray to see if it is true,” the two Mormon missionaries told me as they were wrapping up our meeting. I had heard this challenge before and was not surprised to hear it again. It has come to be a standard for Mormon missionaries, at least the ones I have run into. … Continue reading

You Shall Know Them by Their Fruits…

(This originally appeared in the Fall 2000 edition of the MCOI Journal beginning on page 15) The most used and abused verse of Scripture among cults and pseudo-Christian groups, in my opinion, is Matthew 7:16 where Jesus said to His disciples, “You will know them by their fruits.” Every cultic group, by ignoring the context, misuses this verse to prove to outsiders that they are the true Christians. The common attitude of the cults is, … Continue reading

A Different Gospel

The term “Gospel” simply means “good news.” But most often when we hear or read the term “gospel,” the word has great religious significance. I have been working on updating older Journals from pdf to individual word searchable articles, and as I worked on an older article, “An Examination and Evaluation of the Brownsville Revival,” I was again reminded of the importance of defining terms, specifically concerning such an essential teaching as “the gospel.” The … Continue reading