A Hole in the Gospel by Richard Stearns

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by evangelist6589, Feb 15, 2014.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    A friend of mine whom attend this church has endorsed this book. From what I remember his church is very seeker friendly and rarely preaches on sin, and if they do they dumb it down. Has anyone read this book and what did you think? It has endorsements from questionable characters such as TD Jakes & Tony Campolo. It would appear from a skim this book is questionable for the Reformed Christian is this accurate?
     
  2. Aaron

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    Those endorsing the book are enough to encourage me to neglect it.
     
  3. Revmitchell

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    If Campolo is endorsing it I would not even look at it. The title of the book alone has kept me from going anywhere near it.
     
  4. Crabtownboy

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    I do not know if this is a good book or not. Here is a review.

     
  5. John of Japan

    John of Japan
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  6. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    Thanks John. Yes I believe the book Radical by Platt does a better job at teaching on how to donate to missions and with the added bonus of a Reformed perspective. I have never donated to World Vision nor intend too.
     
  7. HankD

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    Why not contribute to World Vision John?
    The site you point to claims 88% of funds go to the work.

    Are they doctrinally unsound?

    Thanks
    HankD
     
  8. John of Japan

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    I don't know about their doctrine, but:

    (1) 88% is quite low to me. In our mission 100% of the funds go to the missionary, though we missionaries then pay a low office fee to the board. And our directors raise their own support, and are not given a salary by the board. Stearns has an absolutely huge salary, not the salary of a true servant of Christ for the Great Commission. And as Lee Roberson used to say, "Everything rises and falls on leadership."

    (2) I think any legitimate mission board would have much better figures than 88%. And if you want to give to a work which both helps the poor and wins souls, mission boards do a better job. For just one example of many I could give, BMM has an incredible Japanese medical missionary to a 3rd world Muslim country, one of the poorest in the world, and he both wins souls and pastors and heals the sick and educates poor children--a far better work than WV.

    (3) World Vision to my understanding does not give the Gospel, it only feeds and clothes the poor. That's not wrong, but it is far greater to introduce the lost to the Father, who then takes care of His children much better than World Vision can. I understand Franklin Graham's Samaritan's Purse gives the Gospel with the food--a much better method, though not a mission board per se.

    (4) I'm going to edit in another point here. Note that fully 1/3 of their income is from the government. This severely limits what they can do for Christ. You're not allowed to evangelize with government money. To me that's a compromise of Christian principles.
     
    #8 John of Japan, Feb 17, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 17, 2014
  9. John of Japan

    John of Japan
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    Here is an article about the salaries charities give their leaders:
    http://www.seattlepi.com/business/a...fits-say-they-bring-in-top-dollar-1216697.php

    According to this, Stearns is not only the highest paid charity boss in 100 miles of Seattle, his salary is far over twice the national average, which was $142,000 a year at the time of the article. Comparing that to leaders of mission boards, not to mention merely the average national salary of charity leaders, and Stearns' salary is a disgrace.
     
    #9 John of Japan, Feb 17, 2014
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  10. Deacon

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    My family sponsors children through World Vision.
    It's a simple way to connect to a child in poverty.

    Is he worth it?

    "I wake up, I have to raise $3 million a day, 365 days a year," Stearns says.

    Rob
     
  11. sag38

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    The Insanity of God by Nip Ripkin would be much more beneficial read. I wouldn't trust anything associated with Tony Campolo.
     
  12. go2church

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    Seems like an interesting book, those not willing to give it, read kinda prove the thesis of the book. Also love the judgment of the op that this church doesn't preach against sin. Well if you mean yelling at people as they walk in the street, probably not.

    Sterns salary is fine, 400,000 is fair considering the size of the organization. He could and did make millions (Former CEO of Parker Bros and Lennox) but instead works to feed hungry people, pretty admirable.
     
  13. HankD

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    Thanks for the info John.

    HankD
     
  14. John of Japan

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    If all you want to do is feed hungry children, then have at it. But that's not exclusively Christian. Muslims and Buddhists do that. And it's certainly not fulfilling the Great Commission. WV is then simply a secular charity with a Christian attitude.

    However, if you want to feed hungry children and tell them about Jesus, there are many better organizations than WV. Our favorite is Israel Today with Dr. Jeff Johnson, a good Baptist and a true missionary who raises his own support and doesn't take a huge salary from the contributions of God's people. http://www.israeltodayministries.org/
     
  15. John of Japan

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    You bet. :wavey:
     
  16. John of Japan

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    Folks, the idea that you feed people and dig a well for them and teach them how to farm, and this changes society so that they won't need help again is false. On our island of Hokkaido the entire agricultural system was taught to the Japanese beginning in 1875 by William Clark. Clark was a Christian but not a missionary. You can see his influence all over Japan. All of the agricultural buildings on Hokkaido were built on the American pattern, rather than the traditional Japanese one. So what do we have on Hokkaido now? Christians? Kind and loving people? No. We have highly educated and competent heathen farmers. We have productive but dishonest idol worshippers.

    Edited in: And the truth is that now that the Japanese are rich through American technology without American Christianity, they are more arrogant than ever, and harder than ever to win to Christ.

    What changes a country or a people group and takes them out of the poverty cycle? It isn't American charity. It is missionaries doing evangelism, winning folks to Christ and starting churches. This is not theory, it is proven fact. I could suggest various resources to study this, but one just blows the whole "missionary-as-colonialist" and "ugly-American-missionary" right out of the water--scientifically!: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2014/january-february/world-missionaries-made.html

    So, do you want to make a difference in the world? Do you want to help poor Africans and Indians and tribal peoples and other people groups to grow out of poverty? Support evangelistic missionaries. In the process of winning such people to Christ, missionaries incidentally create written languages, teach literacy, teach basic hygiene, start orphanages or national churches which then start orphanages, start hospitals, etc. etc. When you win someone to Christ, the Holy Spirit then builds character in them and God the Father then meets their needs. This is not charity, it is Biblical missions.
     
    #16 John of Japan, Feb 17, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 17, 2014

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