Facing Recurring Heresies which Trouble the Church
A Consensus statement from Pentecostal, Charismatic and Historic Evangelicals
These are days of moral decay, deception, and blatant displays of evil. All around us we see the very manifestations of evil that Scripture warns against. Society denies any absolute standard of morality in favor of toleration and open-minded relativism, despising a separated and holy life. Such attitudes creep into churches, leaving Christians uncertain concerning moral and spiritual commands of Scripture. Some deny the truth of Christ's return (2 Peter 3:3,4) and the role of divinely ordained authority (2 Timothy 3:4). Yet the Holy Spirit is at work in unprecedented ways. We desire to move in step with God's plan for these days.
Of even greater concern than the overt evil of our day is the subtle inroad of false teaching in the name of "newly discovered truth." This constitutes a turning from sound doctrine and a following after false teaching (2 Timothy 4:3,4). Some of the extra-biblical teachings are a return to false teachings from the past, undiscerned by believers not properly grounded in Scripture or familiar with the history of the church. We evangelicals, with various identifying labels but a common commitment to biblical truth and its application, reaffirm the bedrock truths of salvation by grace through faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. At the same time, we seek to identify aberrations and non-biblical teaching and practice that threaten the spiritual health of the body of Christ.
Our concern for scriptural integrity is addressed as follows: A small working group representing Pentecostal, charismatic, and historic evangelicals is producing brief statements reflecting common agreement both on what is true and godly as well as what is unscriptural beliefs and practices. Distinctives of differing theological perspectives are honored, with areas of orthodox agreement emphasized. We desire to present a united front against heretical and bizarre beliefs and practices which discredit the Christian experience and cast shame on the Church. Booklets addressing specific issues bear the endorsement of spiritual leaders of the larger evangelical community. Their endorsement will be individual rather than organizational; signers are not official spokespersons for the churches or organizations with which they may be identified.
As an on-going effort to declare and maintain scriptural integrity in evangelical circles, additional topics will be addressed in this series. The following exemplify areas currently under study.
- The Supernatural and the Demonic
- Recurring Heresies about the Church
- The Prosperity Gospel
- Short-cuts to Sanctification
- When is Worship Truly Worship?
- New Age Influence in the Church
- Modern Day Prophets?
- Dominionism and Kingdom Theology
- Israel and the Church
- False Prophets and False Voices
- Christ's Ministry Gifts to the Church
- Authority in the Body of Christ
- Suffering and Persecution
- Are There Many Ways to God?