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False teaching penetrates Presbyterian Church

False teaching has bombarded the Church for almost 2,000 years.

In recent decades, this deception has come in like a tidal wave through publishing and broadcast media. Surprisingly, false teaching has received credibility in the Christian world by its echoes from pulpits and teaching positions in churches, schools, and seminaries around the globe. The present and long-term effects on the Body of Christ are profound. Millions of professing believers, without realizing it, have accepted false teaching as truth and have placed error on a level equal to Scripture.

So called Presbyterian denomination becoming the leader of false teaching.

The top legislative body of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voted by large margins Thursday to recognize same-sex marriage as Christian in the church constitution, adding language that marriage can be the union of “two people,” not just “a man and a woman.”

The amendment approved by the Presbyterian General Assembly requires approval from a majority of the 172 regional presbyteries, which will vote on the change over the next year. But in a separate policy change that takes effect at the end of this week’s meeting, delegates voted to allow ministers to preside at gay weddings in states where the unions are legal and local congregational leaders approve. Nineteen states and the District of Columbia recognize same-sex marriage.

The votes, during a national meeting in Detroit, were a sweeping victory for Presbyterian gay-rights advocates. The denomination in 2011 eliminated barriers to ordaining clergy with same-sex partners, but ministers were still barred from celebrating gay marriages and risked church penalties for doing so. Alex McNeill, executive director of More Light Presbyterians, a gay advocacy group, said the decisions Thursday were “an answer to many prayers.”

The Rev. Krystin Granberg of the New York Presbytery, where the state recognizes gay marriage, said she receives requests “all the time” from friends and parishioners to preside at their weddings. “They want to be married in the church they love and they want me to do it,” Granberg said during the debate. “I want pastoral relief.”

But Bill Norton, of the Presbytery de Cristo, which covers parts of Arizona and New Mexico, urged the assembly to delay any changes. “We are laying hands on something that is holy, that God has given us, so we need to be sure any changes we make are in accord with God’s will revealed in Scripture,” Norton said.

Since the 2011 gay ordination vote, 428 of the denomination’s more than 10,000 churches have left for other more conservative denominations or have dissolved, though some theological conservatives have remained within the denomination as they decide how to move forward. The church now has about 1.8 million members.

The conservative Presbyterian Lay Committee decried the votes in Detroit as an “abomination.” The assembly voted 371-238 to allow ministers to celebrate same-sex marriages, and 429-175 in favor of amending the definition of marriage in the constitution.

“The General Assembly has committed an express repudiation of the Bible, the mutually agreed upon Confessions of the PCUSA, thousands of years of faithfulness to God’s clear commands and the denominational ordination vows of each concurring commissioner,” the Presbyterian Lay Committee said in a statement.

Of the mainline Protestant denominations, only the United Church of Christ supports gay marriage outright. The Episcopal Church has approved a prayer service for blessing same-sex unions. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America has eliminated barriers for gay clergy but allows regional and local church officials to decide their own policies on ordination and blessings for same-sex couples.

The largest mainline group, the United Methodist Church, with about 7.8 million U.S. members, bars ordaining people in same-sex relationships. However, church members have been debating whether to split over their different views of the Bible and marriage. Gay marriage supporters have been recruiting clergy to openly officiate at same-sex ceremonies in protest of church policy.

It is not surprising that Satan’s strategy is to bombard millions of unsuspecting Christians with worldly philosophies and self-oriented teaching. What is astonishing is the lack of discernment that believers and, especially, Christian leaders have exercised in the face of this onslaught of unbiblical teaching. Instead of opposing false teaching, many Christian leaders have embraced false teaching and have enthusiastically proclaimed it as “truth” to others.
No matter if false teaching is blatantly obvious or cleverly disguised as “truth,” the writers of the New Testament warned that believers should be on guard against such an assault. In addition to the Apostle Paul’s warning (above in Acts 20:28-30), the Apostle Peter indicated that false teaching is to be expected as a result of people discarding or distorting the word of God.
2 Peter 1:19-21, And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
False teachers have always made inroads into the church by distorting or avoiding scriptural truth. In their greed, they exploit their unsuspecting followers.
2 Peter 2:1-3, But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality; and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.
What Paul and Peter warned about in the first century is running rampant in the church world today. “Savage wolves” from without (avowed opponents of Christianity) are now firmly entrenched in the church through the acceptance of their unbiblical, humanistic teaching. There are even “wolves resident within the church” who are masquerading as teachers of scriptural truth.

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1 Comment for “False teaching penetrates Presbyterian Church”

  1. Karen Millen

    What really can rin a formal marriage is cruel jokes.

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