06:33 05Jan11 Ann Rowan -
Good, balanced analysis of many "Christian" churches in America.
06:34 05Jan11 Martha Kinsler -
We must walk in knowing this. The love of MANY will grow cold ... we must not
be one or some of the MANY, but our eternal holy faith must increase. And this,
in knowing HIM and HIS WORD, and walking in all he has COMMANDED us to do. No
more wishy washy ANYTHING. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth: may we be
HIS CHILDREN WITH HEARTS ABLAZE, WITH BURNING HEARTS ... his TRUTH or NO TRUTH,
his LOVE or NO LOVE. All things were created FOR HIM, by HIM, through HIM; he
is the pre-eminent ONE. Do we have a grasp on what holiness means? What purity
means? We should shake with holy fear before him always.
07:03 05Jan11 Clark -
As we approach the last days when lawlessness abounds and the love of many wax
cold; this accomodation of the "church" seems to be part of an overall
believing of the lie we read about. Rev ch 2-3 call on many churches or
communities of faith in Yeshua to repent. We must repent and do the first works
(Acts ch 2) being filled with the Holy Spirit. In a small fellowship we saw God
move through prayer and crying out just this past Shabbat. After the laying on
of hands and tears a sister of one present who had blood pressure of 215/110
received those sent to her to pray for her before being taken to the hospital.
Those sent were told to pray and touch 3 specific areas, the 3rd being the
abdomen. The sister said her stomach felt like it was on fire. After a short
while she felt noticebly better, a new bp was taken nearing normal. This week
she went to Drs to have the many tests prescribed before prayer in the Holy
Spirit was made, they have all come back normal and the pain has subsided and
the bp has remained normal. I say all this to agree wholeheartedly with your
alternative to moral relativism & cultural accomodation. The gates of hell will
not prevail against a spotless bride of Yeshua. We must turn to God while He is
listening before the calamity of Prov 1 comes upon us.
08:55 05Jan11 anon -
Congratulations for your article. You pointed out to the essential of
Christianity: Yeshua and the Kingdom of God, the Father, and the care for the
poor. (Mt 25, 31-46).
09:13 05Jan11 Jeff Beacham -
This is an outstanding commentary on the overall state of western Christianity
and thus accounting for its general decline, while the Kingdom is advancing in
leaps and bounds in the global south. If you compromise the truth, you
compromise the Cause!
09:31 05Jan11 Beverly Schneider -
Well articulated truths that need to be spoken.
10:25 05Jan11 Susan Michaels -
This is an excellent article and hits all of the valid and salient points about
the state of Christendom today. 'Accomodating Christians' are a group I am very
familiar with through a mainline church I grew up with, and in my view, this is
a compromising church, who 'have a form of godliness' (outer appearance of
being 'godly) but who deny the power (the Holy Spirit). Wherever Christendom
has become 'big business' or has assimilated with the world, it will lose its
savour and flavour, and in fact has already failed. Thank you for this
excellent article, which I will share with other, including pastors I know who
are bewildered by their 'weakening' churches today.
10:28 05Jan11 Byron Flint -
Interesting perspectives. I'm not familair with the particular term of
'Accommodating Evangelicals', but what this article describes is pretty much
the pattern of today's mainline Protestants, and to some degreee, some
Catholics as well. Generally in the Christian community, 'Evangelicals' are
regarded as those who are neither Catholic, or mainline Protestant, but more so
the non-denomenational Protestants, Pentecostals and Charismatics. These are
actually the folks who are more concerned with the Biblical standards of truth,
and less likely to embrace the ways of the world.
It appears to me that this article makes the exception to the rule look more
like what is the rule.
-- Dr Juster replies:
I think it is pretty widespread. If one looks at the number who signed
the accord with Islamic leaders, it is more widespread than you may
10:34 05Jan11 Jerry D. Keller -
This is an excellent article. Thank you for bringing this perspective based
upon Biblical and historical truth.
10:41 05Jan11 Linda Morris -
Well stated. Our ministry, Dodi Yavoh's (My Beloved Will Come) mission
statement: "Implementing the Messiah's love to Israel for their physical and
spiritual return to the Land and to their God." We work with the Messianic
leadership in the Land and strongly encourage the Church to awaken to her
responsibility to serve (Matt. 25) and minister (Isaiah 53) to Israel in Truth
and Love. Toda raba for your reinforcement of our and encouragement for what we
11:24 05Jan11 J Thomas Smith -
The spirit of Elijah blows freely in this article by Dan Juster. May all
evangelicals who read it take a deep breath, examine our own walk, and return
to the Christianity in the Book of Acts.
12:50 05Jan11 Hannah Smiley -
Todah! My prayer is that these comments will spread. Congregational leaders
and pastors need to climb on this bandwagon to stop the assimilation of the
church into secular society. We need to line our own personal culture up with
scripture rather than lining scripture up with our culture.
14:18 05Jan11 Robert Bibb -
Great article - I agree completely. May God bring forth the vision of TJCII in
a mighty way!
14:41 05Jan11 The Rev. Dr. Nicholas A. Marziani, Jr. -
In the year 2000 the Roman Catholic Church published a document, that though
bearing the late John Paul II's seal, was actually largely "ghostwritten" by
the current pope, then Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger. Bearing the Latin title,
"Dominus Iesus", it sets forth an incredibly balanced understanding of
salvation vis-a-vis other world religious traditions.
In a nutshell, the apostolic letter acknowledges that God's mercy often extends
to bring salvation to non-Christians (and non-Catholics!) who embrace in
sincerity another tradition out of ignorance of the fullness of the Gospel as
found in Christ and his Church. Such instances nevertheless constitute some
"mystical relationship" to the Lord and his Body, even if there is no explicit
profession of Christian faith.
None of this is understood, however, to offer a "blank check" to those who
through perversity or willfulness fail to embrace the single channel through
which salvation is offered, namely Jesus Christ, the Lord. I believe Dan's
comments are consistent with now Pope Benedict XVI's perspective, and I
congratulate him on posting this important article.
-- Dr Juster replies:
Thank you for this comment. I am familiar with the Pope's view on this.
15:04 05Jan11 Linda Schauer -
Well written Dan! "In the end times evil would be spoken of as good and good
will be spoken of as evil. Yes, we surely have entered this new post-modern
era. The key is how we relate G-d's truth and love to others in culture and
time with compassion for others.
15:22 05Jan11 Janine McCaffrey -
This is so helpful. Your grasp of these issues reminds me of what St. Paul
says in Romans, 'But some of the olive branches have been broken off, and you,
a wild olive branch, have been grafted in their place. You get your nourishment
from the roots of the olive tree.' (the last sentence). Great.
18:04 05Jan11 Christopher Hernandez -
This was a convicting and difficult article to read all the way through to the
end. As you touched on many of the accepted norms for today's evangelical
Christians, I could not help but realize that I have willfully fallen into some
of the categories mentioned. Constantly, we are challenged to stay on the
narrow path that Yeshua laid out for us, and after reading this today, I am
encouraged to believe that He will see me through today, and in the future,
with the fullness of His truth and Gospel lighting the way. Thank you for
searching your own heart in these matters and for sharing the wisdom that has
been revealed to you so freely. I look forward to familiarizing myself with the
Messianic faith that will surely enhance my walk with God and my knowledge of
our Savior, Yeshua, the Messiah.
19:07 05Jan11 BD -
I don't know much about philosophy nor much about pre or post modernism. I do
know sin is alive and well and that western culture has exchanged the place of
prayer and worship for the stage. Ministry has become a great idol and we have
taught our young the glories of self worship. Give them a microphone and
keyboard, and don't forget the drums and they will be happy to sacrifice all
for fame. Ministries break up so each can do what is right in their own eyes.
And the sad thing is we are exporting it all to the nations. Let's not forget
to bicker and fight and clamor for the preeminence. All who want to make a
decision? "come on down!" and enter into the kingdom...don't forget your
wallet...a kingdom has to be built, a great complex for the glory of me.
I miss the days of the grey hairs who taught me the fear of the Lord. Who were
rich in humility, and lavished the scriptures on my young ears. They taught me
the Glory of Israel was coming again and expected Him any moment. They taught
me the truth that repentance means having to not only say your sorry but you
actually turn away from evil and no excuses! They were not victims of the
devil's attacks they admitted they had done wrong to someone and apologized.
And then they made it right. We cannot get 5 people for a prayer meeting, we
no longer pray in church and please don't read more than 5 verses. But give me
Zumba in the Sanctuary!
It isn't Charismatic or old mainline, Messianic or Islam. It is pride and
arrogance and old fashioned boasting and selfish ambition, and don't forget the
anointing! It has never been harder to do battle with sin in my own heart than
in these days. It is an old fashioned misery, with an ancient truth ... "the
heart is deceitful and wicked above all else ... who can know it?" ME!
There was One, who emptied Himself. Just give me this One. Yeshua. Name above
all names and he is never too busy to respond. It is what sets Yehovah above
all gods...He hears my cry and answers. He bends low.
-- Dr Juster replies:
I share having had such mentors. What a blessing.
20:15 05Jan11 David Howell -
Once again you are right on. I believe the whole seeker sensitive movement is
watering down the demonstration of the Spirit so as not not 'offend'
non-believers but I think it is just to be popular (the fear of man is the
root). The cross of Jesus is not popular.
00:40 06Jan11 Sharon -
I've also seen the desire of many be that of accommodation and have asked "at
what price". The Word of Gd is being watered down in the churches in order to
bring in the unchurched and make them feel more comfortable. When did Yeshua
ever change His message because of the unbelief around Him? It is a sorry
state indeed. Thank you for writing this - if we see what's wrong and remain
silent - then we are just as guilty as those wishing to accommodate the lost
with half truths and sometimes even outright lies.
08:53 06Jan11 Richard G. Hanner -
Dr. Juster presents a clear and precise understanding of our present cultural
context. I sincerely appreciate his balance with substantive theology.
09:07 06Jan11 Rob Hampton -
Well said. We who love Y'shua must follow Him faithfully. That eliminates
compromise. G-d has given us His Word (Living and Written) to give us
confidence. John 21:24 - This is the disciple *who is bearing witness about
these things, and who has written these things, and *we know *that his
testimony is true.
09:32 06Jan11 Larry Branch -
I agree "Love going cold" is the key to keeping our brothers and sisters and
the expansion of the Kingdom to include greater numbers from every tribe and
tongue. The Kingdom of the Gospel's cornerstone is love, it is Yeshua. If there
is a movement away from family we must examine our love. If we desire an
expansion or even a sustaining of our traditions we must look at the motives of
our heart. Love seek not its own. Jesus died for all He excluded no one. The
heart of exclusion should never lie with us. Forgiveness only has been extended
from the throne of our Father to us. So when the world sees us they should see
our Father, they should see only love and forgiveness.
11:20 06Jan11 Glenn -
If one looks at many emergent churches, Cedar Ridge in Maryland for example -
the majority of the members came from unchurched backgrounds. In the past many
evangelicals became captive to modernity and it's influence and are now in
decline. Many post-evangelicals have sought to push back against modernity and
it's exclusive nature and redraw the boundaries to create a more missional
oriented church. Many see Lesslie Newbigin, David Bosch, Nt Wright, etc. as
major influences for reshaping theology. Many are seeking to heal the damage
done by the religious right and not create a culture that excludes on the basis
of politics or other non-essential partisan issues. Others, like the
philosopher Carl Raschke (Ph.D. Harvard), in his book The Next Reformation see
churches like Chuck Pierce's Glory of Zion in Denton, Texas in a very positive
-- Dr Juster replies:
The Emergent Churches are such a broad category that it is a question as
to whether it really is a coherent movement. For example, the writings
of Allen Hirsch are wonderful. We have met and are on the same page.
Others have embrace a relativistic theory of knowledge and even praise
Jaques Dirreda. So in this we have one emergent leader strongly
rejecting the views of the other emergent churches. I am not sure that
the category is helpful any longer.
11:42 06Jan11 Amanda Thompson -
THank you so much for writing this article! I go to a leaning liberal Christian
University in Abilene and have been studying under teachers that you have just
described in this article. I have not fully understood their ideals and their
beliefs until now because of the spectrum of different streams they are pulling
from to form their world view. Now I get it and am so thankful to understand
more clearly what I'm combating with my "radical ideas and beliefs". Being a
believer in Yeshua and embracing Israel and her destiny along with mine has
been difficult in this realm of academia and you have now given me the tools to
walk with more clarity and understanding, in order to love my professors and
fellow students out of understanding and not out of the blind compassion I had
previously! This message comes just in time for my spring semester and the
timing couldn't have been more awesome!
14:59 06Jan11 LaVerne Foster -
You have written a thought-provoking message which has caused me to reflect on
many New and Old Testament Scriptures. I am also encouraged by the thoughtful
comments shared. Jesus came to change us; He preached the good news of the
Kingdom of heaven with signs and wonders and showed us His way of love and
life -- ultimately, the way of the cross. Therefore, God exalted him to the
highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name
of Jesus every kneee should bow in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and
every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
For those who know him and whom he has made to be both salt and light; he has
commanded that we pick up our cross and follow him. He has given us the
ministry of reconciliation (2Corinthians 5:11-21). When the full number of the
gentiles have come in, all Israel will be saved (Romans 11:25-36). While the
faithful of old "were commended for their faith, none of them received what had
been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together
with us would they be made perfect" (Hebrews 11:39-40). Careful/prayerful
reflections: Genesis 49:1-2; Numbers 18:1; lPeter 2:9, 2Chronicles 33:10-13;
Daniel 4:33-37; Daniel 12:5-10; and Ephesians 4:14-19. Thank you, Jesus, that
you have made us a new creation and given us a new heaven and a new earth.
Thank you that you have caused light to shine in darkness and are teaching us
to know "the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge that we may be filled to
the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do
immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at
work with us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all
generations, for ever and ever! Amen."
15:11 06Jan11 Mary E Dow -
You've said it well! However, how does one move more closely to the life as
Jesus charged: "these signs shall follow those who believe ..." (Mark 16:15-20)
and then we were taught that it was not for US. [And yet, in fact, only a very
few manuscripts left out these verses.]
00:48 07Jan11 Rita Summers -
I just left a missional church because it was becoming too accommodating and
watering down God's word. The premise of the missional/emergent church
teaching is that God wants to change the church to make it more relevant to the
culture. This premise is faulty and does not fit with the teaching from Romans
that the church needs to become provocative to the Jewish people. This is the
old serpent at work steering the church away from God's priorities.
07:46 07Jan11 David -
AMEN! "It is so unlike the Book of Acts type of Christianity in Africa, Asia
and South America. Evangelicals in those countries look more like the first
believers described in the New Testament" Can anyone say that the Church of
"Philadelphia" (see Revelation chapter 3) is alive and well in these regions?
18:53 10Jan11 Kia Paranihi -
Our heavenly Father accommodated us in sending Messiah to die. It is by His
grace alone that we can receive HIS LIFE and call ourselves by His name. If we
have HIS LIFE, why do we cling to what is condemned and dead and give it
pre-eminance over the Holy Spirit. "Accommodating Evangelicalism" is motivated
by that deep seated human (dead, fleshly) need for acceptance by others. We
must die to it and make room for more of Jesus. WE WILL THEN EXPERIENCE THE
AMAZING WONDERS OF HIS LIFE, that reach hungry humble hearts. "Accommodating
Evangelicalism" vaunts itself against the sovereignty of God. Abba, please open
the eyes and hearts of your people to Your ways and Your power. Praise You!
21:27 22Jan11 Elizabeth Buckley -
Thank you for speaking out with such clarity concerning the "watered-down
gospel" that is being preached as a more loving way to relate to those who
don't know the Messiah. In an effort to not be offensive and run someone off
from the truth, there is a move to be so relevant to the world that we are
powerless in the Spirit.