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The first “10 Heresy-Hiders in Evangelicalism”
If you want to infiltrate evangelicalism with heresy, here are 10 more things you can do . . .
1. Christianize popular ideas within your society. In the United States, tolerance equals love. Quote 1 Corinthians 13, while ignoring other verses that are intolerant. Tell your hearers that love equals tolerance, so that in the name of love you may encourage them to love you by tolerating your heresy.
2. Appeal to adolescence. Every teenager and adult wants to break away from the ideas of their parents and grandparents. Cater to this adolescent mentality by always suggesting that you’re teaching something relevant (new), as opposed to what their parents and grandparents previously taught. In other words, appeal to the pride of your hearers. Tell them their spirituality is greater than the spirituality of those who came before.
3. Create an atmosphere that makes people feel good. Heresy should anger Christians, but if you make them feel good with the music, singing, prayers, videos, entertainment, and sermons, then you can sneak heresy in. Evangelicals find it hard to recognize heresy when all of their senses are peaked. When one likes what he sees, hears, feels, etc., thinking and discernment are cast aside. Lull your hearers into a euphoric sleep, then deliver your poison.
4. Tell amazing stories. Christians and the world alike love to hear amazing stories where God recently moved in a mighty way. They’re constantly looking for a new sign that God is not dead. They’ve heard the stories in the Bible enough. They long for something fresh and new. Give it to them. Throw a few Bible verses in there as well so people think you’re still preaching Scripture.
5. Speak in non-absolutes. Preface every sermon and lesson with, “I think, I believe,” while never saying, “I know.” Eventually your hearers will see their beliefs as their beliefs, and not necessarily the beliefs of the prophets, apostles, and Christ. The underlying assumption for such language is that there is no absolute truth. If there’s no absolute truth, then there’s no such thing as heresy. Your hearers will eventually redefine “orthodoxy” as “heterodoxy” while believing that neither exist.
6. Major on specific Bible verses while intentionally ignoring those that contradict your interpretation. Connect verses with other verses with other verses. Even if these verses have no contextual connection, if you use Scripture arbitrarily, you can teach heresy from the Bible. The goal is to not to give your hearers the complete truth, but half-truths. Half-truths are the make-up of heresy, and some Scripture is your ally in this endeavor.
7. Accustom your hearers to indemonstrable statements you tout as facts. Make vague statements that hang in midair such as, “God is going to do something amazing through this church,” “God is leading us to build,” “God told me someone is going to give a large sum of money,” etc. These statements are all lack sufficient proof. There’s no timetable for validation. As your hearers grow more accustomed to unfounded, indemonstrable claims, they’ll seek no validation for your unfounded, indemonstrable heretical statements either.
8. Pray like you’re a priest in the pulpit. Act like you’re receiving some special anointing that exalts you above your hearers as you preach. Make statements like, “God gave me a word for you today,” or “God told me that you needed to hear this sermon today.” This way, your hearers will come expecting to hear from God through you, thinking that you have a Word from God, instead of believing that the Scriptures have a Word from God, and you’re merely expositing them. See, you can become the mouthpiece of God. Heresy is easy to indoctrinate when people think you speak for God. The goal is for your hearers to view you as a type of priest, prophet, apostle, etc. who has divine authority. You must attack the priest-hood of the believer by exalting yourself in the pulpit, if your heresy is to be accepted by Bible-readers.
9. Create a canon within the Canon. Exalt the words of Christ above the words of the apostles. Act as if Christ’s words are greater than the words of the Holy Spirit spoken through the Scripture writers. Then, you may reject the progressive revelation that further clarifies the words of Christ in the rest of the New Testament, and replace it with your own heretical interpretations. Teach your hearers that they know Christ better than the eyewitnesses who walked and talked with Him, and recorded His works. Teach them that their interpretation of Christ’s words in the Gospels is better than the interpretation of Christ’s words by Luke, Peter, Paul, John, Jude, James, etc. in the rest of the New Testament. Furthermore, make sure your hearers don’t know that the words of Christ in the Gospels were written by mere men, and not Christ. If you can encourage your hearers to trust themselves more than they trust those who wrote Scripture, heresy will be the natural outcome.
10. Speak of previous heretics as martyrs. Act like previous heretics were sweet, little lambs, who fell victim to the evil Catholic Church. Your hearers probably won’t go check church history, but if they do, it’s necessary for you to reinterpret church history prior to their research. You must give them an interpretive grid that helps them view church history through your eyes. If they view heresy in church history through the lens of tolerance, they’ll tolerate your heresy as well. After all, every Christian has a right to believe whatever he or she wants.