Sunday, May 4, 2014

An Open Letter to Liberty University Administration

Note: I wrote about this issue here, and I challenged people to write emails here. I will be emailing this letter to Johnnie Moore and Jerry Falwell Jr. tomorrow morning. Please join me!

Dear Johnnie Moore and Jerry Falwell Jr.,

In 2004 I began my journey at Liberty University as a calloused, apathetic, individual. Through the ministry of fellow students and professors I began to understand the importance of the Gospel, which God used to break down my apathy. Because of my experiences at Liberty, it saddens me to see that Liberty allowed Glenn Beck to preach a religious message in Convocation.

Mormons are not evangelical Christians and do not have the same beliefs that Christians do. In his sermon Glenn Beck said that he was from a "Christian denomination." At Liberty I was taught that Mormonism is a cult and that they deny salvation by grace through faith, along with holding many other false beliefs.

Paul in the book of Galatians has this to say: "But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed" (Galatians 1:8-9). You may say that Glenn Beck preached a gospel message that is the same as the one that Paul preached, but the Mormon church adds works as a necessary part of salvation. In fact, they mean different things when they use terminology (i.e. "atonement," "gospel," "etc.") that is also used by conservative evangelical Christians.

Unless Liberty University publicly repudiates the claims of Glenn Beck that Mormonism is a denomination of Christianity, many people may be misled. This is a serious issue, ultimately, because it is a Gospel issue. According to the Bible, Mormons are false teachers, not Christians. I respectfully request that the University make a public statement concerning the false teaching of Mormons, and clearly explain the difference in belief between the University and Glenn Beck on the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

In Christ,

Tad Caldwell
Class of 2008

Friday, May 2, 2014

Liberty University Email Campaign

Note: If you do not know what all the fuss is about go here.

It seems as if the leadership of Liberty University has forgotten that Mormonism is a cult.  I was taught in multiple classes at Liberty University that Mormonism, because of its abandonment of the Gospel of grace, is a cult.

Inviting Glenn Beck to speak in convocation, and allowing him to give a religious message was a horrible decision, and one that is contrary to the vision of Liberty's founding. Ultimately the Jesus of Mormonism is not the same as the Jesus of the Bible.

Something at Liberty needs to change. I am recommending that every student, alumnus, faculty, staff, or donor to Liberty University who has an issue with the recent actions of giving a false teacher a platform speak, send an email to the university on Monday, May 5th. I think a concerted effort of 100 people or more all writing on the same day will have more effect than emails trickling in over a few weeks.

At a minimum, I want the faculty at least to disagree with the statement by Glenn Beck that Mormonism is a Christian denomination, and I want them to officially state that the Mormon church is a cult.

This is a Gospel issue, and in being a Gospel issue we should focus on the Gospel in our emails. The main focus of these emails should be that Mormonism denies salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.

Tips for these emails:

1. Be polite
There is no need to type in all caps, or to sound angry or mean. We are correcting falsehood, and we want Liberty University to do the same thing.

2. Be firm
Be firm on the Gospel. Pointedly, but respectfully, explain how Mormons deny the truth of the Gospel according to the Word of God.

3. Make no personal attacks
Follow Paul's example in Galatians 2. We are not upset because we are somehow better than those who made these decisions; we are upset because they are neglecting the Gospel that brings us all together. Remind them that unity apart from unity in the Gospel is a false unity.

The best person to send these emails to seems to be Johnny Moore whose email address is:

If anyone has an email address for Jerry Falwell Jr. please post in the comments and I will add it to this post.

Share this with others who are connected with Liberty for maximum effectiveness!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Christianity and Politics

There is a problem in evangelical Christianity in America.

We have become too intertwined in American politics.  Outsiders, at times, view Republicans and Christians as the same thing. 

Let me give two examples of how evangelical Christians have recently been too intertwined in politics.

1. Sarah Palin (former Republican vice presidential candidate and loved by many evangelical Christians) said:
"Well, if I were in charge, they would know that waterboarding is how we baptize terrorists."

The comparison of the Christian idea of baptizing with a method of torture should sicken every single Christian, but since many Christians have forgotten the Gospel and instead look to the State to save them they cheer. Those who disagree with this concept may be labeled pacifists or liberals. Instead of torturing people maybe we should be praying for the salvation of their souls.  As Joe Carter said in his blog post on this issue: "If we are to preserve our own humanity we must not forget that our enemy differs from us in degree, not in kind. Like us, our enemies need to accept Jesus and to be baptized by water and the Spirit. "

2. Liberty University allowing a Mormon, Glen Beck, to speak in Convocation.
Glen Beck is a well-known political commentator and Mormon. Mormons deny the truth of the Gospel of grace and instead supplant it with a false gospel of works. They deny the essential deity of Jesus, and thus deny the essentials of what it means to be Christian. Yet Liberty University, in putting the politics ahead of the Gospel, gave him a platform to speak his heresy. And Liberty University only has positive things to say about his convocation message. When Beck says "gospel" he does not mean the good news that Jesus Christ kept the law for us, then died taking our punishment upon himself. This is a major oversight by Liberty University and is just further evidence of politics being considered more important than the Gospel.

What should we do then, as Christians?

1. Repent of conflating gospel and politics.
There is no problem with Christians being involved in politics, but politics should never be considered the end game of Christians. A government run by Christians would still have problems, and until we have a government run by Christ (when he returns and sets up his eternal kingdom) we will have problems. No one will ever be saved from eternal damnation by a good government, but only by Jesus. Christians thinking they can make moral people by using the government are deluded, and even if they could make people moral it would not accomplish anything other then sending outward morally people to hell.

2. Repent of legalism.
Adding moral stipulations to the Bible is wrong. Saying that good Christians should vote in a certain way is a form of legalism. The Bible does not specifically say how a Christian should vote, and Christians may end up landing on different positions politically. This does not make one Christian better than another. When the Bible is silent on an issue, like it ultimately is on so many issues, we can not make our personal decision "law" for other Christians to follow. To take this a step further, it is also not a moral imperative for a Christian to vote at all!

3. Stop thinking of America as a special or Christian nation.
The kingdom of God is not of this world, and America is not a Christian nation.  It never has been, and never will be, because there is no such thing.  America is not promised prosperity if it turns to Christ, and is not promised destruction if it does not. God has not made a covenant with America, and America does not replace Israel. 

4. Focus on the propagation of the Gospel, not a political movement.
Let us tell our nation, and our world of the good news of Jesus' sacrifice instead of spending so much time focused on politics. Let us never stop spreading this Good News. Let us fulfill the great commission of Mathew 28 by making disciples, and helping others grow in the gospel of Jesus Christ.