Newsletters

November / December 2009

GOSPEL DEFENCE LEAGUE

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Nov / Dec 2009

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Dear Friends,

We wish you a blessed Christmas and a happy New Year. May the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ sustain you and the joy of Christmas enfold you. “He came down to earth from heaven, who is God and Lord of all… But our eyes at last shall see him through His own redeeming love… not in that poor lowly stable, with the oxen standing by, we shall see him, but in heaven, set at God’s right hand on high.”

This blessed expectation of Jesus’ Second Coming was the theme of a conference in Germany, from 8-11 October, 2009. In the medieval town of Bad Gandersheim the International Christian Network (ICN) 1) gathered to reflect on “the One Church of Christ in Expectation of His Return.” Christians from all over Europe looked in hope toward the day when “He will come again with glory to judge the living and the dead. His kingdom will never end,” 2) - when “at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.” (Philippians 2:10f)

Organiser of this conference was the President of the International Christian Network, Prof Dr Peter Beyerhaus, the well-known missiologist who, at 80, was retiring after 30 years in office. His fellow Lutheran, Rev Ulrich Rüss of Hamburg, was inducted as the new President, and Prof Beyerhaus was made Honorary President. The Gospel Defence League (GDL) has long been affiliated to the ICN, and so I was invited on your behalf. We thus had the opportunity of thanking Professor Beyerhaus for the wonderful help he has given to Churches and Missions in South Africa not only on behalf of the GDL, but also of Frontline Fellowship and Christians for Truth.

Pro Fide Defendenda (In Defence of the Faith)

In his young years Peter Beyerhaus had been a missionary in Natal. His involvement with us, however, started in 1974, when the Methodist Rev Fred Shaw had called a conference of the Christian League (the forerunner of the GDL). He spoke on “the Berlin Declaration on Ecumenism (BDE): Freedom and Fellowship in Christ.” This Declaration had been adopted at an international meeting in Berlin on Ascension Day 1974. It was a warning against false doctrines coming from the ecumenical movement, especially “the new Humanism” of the World Council of Churches (WCC), which was harming the flock of Christ. “Our age is a time of sifting for Christianity,” the BDE read. “An ungodly humanism that deifies man is penetrating it everywhere in the guise of a pseudo-Christian theo-logy, and is undermining the Church’s traditional confession of Christ… The apostolic faith is seriously threatened today… By an overwhelming estimate of his own wisdom and creative abilities Man is setting himself in the place of God. He decides, without regard to Biblical revelation, what is good or evil.” 3) Instead of looking toward the return of Christ as the fulfillment of history, the ecumenical movement embraced a “‘Utopian Vision’ of a world-community of peace, accomplished by united human energies and including all races, religions, and ideologies.”

The World Council of Churches (WCC) had, in fact, started reinterpreting central Biblical truths in political and social terms and, through its satellite Councils of Churches (such as the SA Council of Churches), changed Christianity into an alien religion. Christ was no longer the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, but a political liberator. The Kingdom of God was equated with Marxist rule. The unity of the Church became a stepping stone to the New World Order, and Mission was changed to Dialogue. The WCC promoted a ‘moratorium on missions,’ which led to a world wide decline in missionary activity and left many young churches leaderless.

In the 20 th century the WCC assumed great religious and political power, even unto the raising up and casting down of governments. It now comprises 349 Churches and 560 million Christians in over 110 countries. 4) In 1948 it had been established with large donations from the Rockefeller Foundation. “The high-degree freemason Rockefeller did not only donate the UN property in New York, he also financed the establishment of the World Council of Churches in Geneva,” wrote Norbert Homuth in his book “Vorsicht Ökumene.” A key position was given to John Foster Dulles, legal advisor to the Rockefeller family and later US Secretary of State. Dulles was appointed head of the WCC’s Commission for International Relations, and his particular brief was to link up the work of the WCC with that of the United Nations Organisation. 5)

Over the years many vital Biblical doctrines have been watered down. Thus, the International Christian Network not only had to warn against false doctrine and syncretism, but also lay new foundations. The ICN published books, documents, declarations and papers on subjects such as Unity in Christ, the Trinity, Biblical Ecumenism, the Ten Commandments, the Family, viz. Biblical aids on every area of contemporary life: Education, Art, Mission, Islam, Persecution, Homosexuality, Abortion, Euthanasia etc. Over the years, the ICN has also called pastors to spiritual and moral integrity, encouraged politicians to hold to Christian principles, and exhorted the European Union to lay a God-anchored constitutional foundation. It has not always been successful, but it has set a sign.

It was therefore fitting that after 30 years of defending the faith and exposing false doctrine, Prof Beyerhaus should have chosen the theme of Christ’s Second Coming and to call the Church to holiness, faithfulness, and patience as she “is waiting for the blessed hope - the glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own .”(Titus 2:13-14)

The Gender Question

Today the challenges to the Gospel of Christ are never ending, and the ICN conference raised a matter which is now threatening the survival of mankind. In the wake of homosexual rights, the United Nations and the European Union are pursuing an ideology called “gender mainstreaming.” This is being promoted with missionary zeal and has, almost unnoticed, entered into schools, universities, governments and Churches. Gender Mainstreaming claims that men and women are not created different, nor do they have different God-given roles, but that every human being can choose his own gender. - In the Bible we read: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it." (Genesis 1:27-28; 5:2) This basic creation truth is being denied by the UN, the EU and their scientific vassals. From kindergarten to University children are taught that gender is relative, that they may choose for themselves whether they want to be male or female, and they may engage either in heterosexual, homosexual, transgender, or any other queer activity, depending on the “identity” they have chosen.

One of the great experts of this ‘science’ is a psychiatrist by the name of John Money at the Johns-Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. He founded the first “Gender Identity Clinic” and became world famous when he experimented with two identical twin brothers. One of these brothers, Bruce Reimer, had, through a botched circumcision, lost his penis when he was a little boy. His parents thought of remedying this with a sex change operation, and under the supervision of Dr Money the little boy was brought up as a girl. But throughout his childhood he felt tortured, and he rebelled. As early as age 11 he had suicidal thoughts. At 13, when told what had happened to him, he reverted to being a boy, and at age 26 he shot himself, one year after his brother Brian had killed himself with an overdose of tablets. John Money who had up till then boasted of his gender change successes was found to be an unwholesome character, an advocate of group sex and bisexuality, who wanted to teach children ‘fucking games’ and regarded lust murders as “paraphilia.” 6)

In Germany the ideology of “gender mainstreaming” has already been built into government programmes as a “generally applicable guiding principle”“cutting across all tasks of the state” (Querschnittsaufgabe).” 7) It is part of sex education at schools, and from their earliest age children are being deliberately confused about their gender identity. This is an outright attack on our Creator God and on the image of God in Man. It is a policy of death, an incentive to family suicide. For homosexuals do not reproduce. “Gender mainstreaming” thus has the same goal as the UN’s policy of reducing the world’s population from its present alleged 6 billion to less than 1 billion people.

God is love. But where, in all this, is love? God has created and redeemed man in love. Every child is born through an act of love. Love makes the world go round. Love is the greatest. Love is eternal. Christ’s new commandment is that we should love one another, not destroy one another. Even the apostle exhorts us: “It is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may…be pure and blameless for the day of Christ.” (Philippians 1:10) This year’s Christmas again reminds us that God sent His Son because He loved us, and that this Son will return in glory. Let us then “consider how to stir up one another to love and good works… encouraging one another” (Hebrews 10:24-25), for “Christ will come again with glory to judge the living and the dead. His Kingdom will never end.”

We wish you every blessing for Christmas.

D. Scarborough.

Footnotes: 1. German name: Internationale Konferenz bekennender Gemeinschaften. President Pastor Ulrich Rüss, Saturnweg 39, D-22391 Hamburg, Germany; Institut Diakrisis, Schulstrasse 1, D-72810 Gomaringen, Tel. 07072-920343; www.institut-diakrisis.de. 2. Nicene Creed. 3. Berliner Ökumene-Erklärung 1974, These 1. 4. . WCC official figures 2009. 5. N. Homuth, Vorsicht Ökumene, quoted by Klaus D Vaqué in Verrat an Südafrika, Varama Publishers, 1988, pp. 202-203. 6. Gabriele Kuby, Die Gender Revolution – Relativismus in Aktion, 2008. 7. Op. Cit.



THE LAST JUDGMENT AND THE RETURN OF CHRIST

From the Westminster Confession of Faith of 1647

  • God has appointed a day wherein he will judge the world in righteousness by Jesus Christ, to whom all power and judgment is given of the Father. In which day, not only the apostate angels shall be judged.


But likewise all persons that have lived upon earth shall appear before the tribunal of Christ, to give an account of their thoughts, words, and deeds, and to receive according to what they have done in the body, whether good or evil.

Acts 17:31 - “For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead.”

John 5:22, 27 - Moreover, the Father judges no-one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, and he has given him authority to judge because he is the Son of Man.”

1 Corinthians 6:3 - “Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life?” -

2 Peter 2:4 - “For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them into gloomy dungeons to be held for judgment…”

2 Corinthians 5:10 - “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due to him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.”

Ecclesiastes. 12:14 - For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.”

Romans 2:16 - “This will take place on the day when God will judge men’s secrets through Jesus Christ.”

Romans 14:10, 12 - “You then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God.”

Matthew 12:36, 37 - “But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

  • The end of God’s appointing this day is for the manifestation of the glory of his mercy in the eternal salvation of the elect, and of his justice in the damnation of the reprobate, who are wicked and disobedient. For then shall the righteous go into everlasting life, and receive that fullness of joy and refreshing which shall come from the presence of the Lord; but the wicked, who know not God, and obey not the gospel of Jesus Christ, shall be cast into eternal torments, and be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.


Matthew 25:31 - “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats…”

Romans 2:5, 6 - “But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. God ‘will give to each person according to what he has done.’”

Romans 9:22, 23 - “What if God, choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath – prepared for destruction? What if he did this to make the riches of his glory known to the objects of his mercy, whom he prepared in advance for glory?”

Matthew 25:21 - “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’”

Acts 3:19 - “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you – even Jesus.”

2 Thessalonians 1:7-10 - “God is just: he will give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels.”

  • Christ would have us to be certainly persuaded that there shall be a day of judgment, both to deter all men from sin, and for the greater consolation of the godly in their adversity.


2 Peter 3:11, 14 - “Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives. So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him.”

2 Corinthians 5:10, 11 - “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due to him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience.”

2 Thessalonians 1:5-7 - “All this is evidence that God’s judgment is right, and as a result you will be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are suffering. God is just; he will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well.”

Luke 21:7, 28 - “Teacher, they asked, when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place? … ‘When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.’”

Romans 8:23-25 - “We ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.”

  • Christ will have that day unknown to men, that they may shake off all carnal security, and be always watchful, because they know not at what hour the Lord will come; and may be ever prepared to say, Come, Lord Jesus, come quickly. Amen.


Matthew 24: 36, 42, 43, 44 - “No-one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father… Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.”

Mark 13:35-37 - “Therefore keep watch because you do not know when the owner of the house will come back – whether in the evening, or at midnight, or when the cock crows, or at dawn. If he comes suddenly, do not let him find you sleeping. What I say to you, I say to everyone: ‘Watch!’”

Luke 12:35, 36 - “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like men waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him.”

Revelation 22:20 - “He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’”

From the Heidelberg Catechism

Question 52: How does Christ’s return ‘to judge the living and the dead’ comfort you?

Answer: In all my distress and persecution I turn my eyes to the heavens and confidently await as judge the very One who has already stood trial in my place before God and so has removed the whole curse from me.

Luke 21:28 - “When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

Romans 8:22-25 - “We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.”

Philippians 3: 20-21 - “But your citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.”

Titus 2:13-14 - “While we wait for the blessed hope – the glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.”

All his enemies and mine he will condemn to everlasting punishment: but me and all his chosen ones he will take along with him into the joy and the glory of heaven.

Matthew 25:31-46 - “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory... and he will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat. I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger and you invited me in… I was sick and you looked after me…”

2 Thessalonians 1:6-10 - “God is just: he will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled… This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels.”



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