- Dr. D. James Kennedy is a well-known author and pastor of the nearly 10,000-member Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Kennedy earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Tampa, a Master of Divinity from Columbia Theological Seminary, a Master of Theology from Chicago Graduate School of Theology, and a Ph.D. from New York University. He is the author of more than 55 books, including Evangelism Explosion (more than 1.5 million copies), What If Jesus Had Never Been Born?, The Gates of Hell Shall Not Prevail, New Every Morning, Skeptics Answered, What If The Bible Had Never Been Written?, Led By the Carpenter, Solving Bible Mysteries, and God’s Absolute Best for You.
Kennedy has also founded four organizations that he now oversees: Evangelism Explosion International (1962), Knox Theological Seminary (1989), Coral Ridge Ministries Media (CRMM) (1974), and Westminster Academy (1971). CRMM has grown from 15 employees to more than 180, broadcasting Truths That Transform, a daily half-hour national radio program carried on nearly 485 stations; The Kennedy Commentary, a daily 90-second radio feature heard on over 470 stations; and The Coral Ridge Hour, a weekly one-hour television program begun in 1978 and now carried on more than 600 stations and four cable networks (primarily on TBN, the blasphemous station owned and operated by Paul and Jan Crouch), reaching 40,000 cities and 202 nations.
Kennedy also claims to be a champion of the anti-self-esteem movement, yet his actions are much softer than his words. Also of concern is Kennedy's fascination with the "Gospel in the Stars" heresy and with his social activism and evangelistic ecumenism with Catholics and charismatics. Kennedy has also become a full-fledged "Cultural Mandate" promoter and an advocate of the "Christian America" myth. Kennedy's Center for Christian Statesmanship is Coral Ridge's "spiritually based outreach to men and women in positions of influence and authority in our nation's capital." The Center for Reclaiming America is another Coral Ridge outreach "to inform the American public and motivate people of faith to defend and implement the biblical principles on which our country was founded."
- Kennedy has endorsed the Life
Application Bible (along with Billy
Hendricks, and Charles
Stanley), a study Bible with study notes in support of self-love and other
humanistic concepts (e.g., study note to Rom. 12:3 -- "Healthy self-esteem
is important because some of us think too little of ourselves ... the key to an
honest and accurate evaluation is knowing the basis of our self-worth -- our
identity in Christ "; and Gen. 1:26 -- "Knowing that we are made in
God's image, and thus share many of His characteristics, provides a solid basis
for self-worth ... Because we bear God's image, we can feel positive about
ourselves ... Knowing you are a person of worth helps you love God "). Yet
despite these study notes, Kennedy is quoted as saying that, "Much Bible
reading is like squirting gasoline at the opening of the fuel tank from ten feet
away. Much of it ends up on the ground. The Life Application Bible will
succeed in getting more gasoline in the tank."
- Kennedy is a proponent of the teaching known as the Gospel in the Stars, which is nothing more than a "Christian" interpretation of astrology and occultism, in much the same class as so-called "Biblical" pyramidology and numerology. In fact, Kennedy even calls this teaching "Biblical astrology." The following is excerpted from a 1992 brochure promoting Kennedy's book and book on audiotape, The Real Meaning of the Zodiac.
"What Does Your Future Hold? Listen to Dr. D. James Kennedy's book on audio tape, The Real Meaning of the Zodiac. Discover what he calls Biblical astrology or the 'Gospel in the stars.' What does the Bible tell us about the Zodiac and astrology? Startling discoveries related by eminent theologian Dr. D. James Kennedy prove that God created the Zodiac! God intended the stars to foretell the future of the world! Discover what Dr. Kennedy calls Biblical astrology, or the 'Gospel in the stars' Dr. Kennedy clearly proves from Scripture that astrology is nothing more than a satanic perversion of the original revelation of God As you listen to The Real Meaning of the Zodiac, you will gain new knowledge of God's sovereignty over all creation and gain valuable insight into a deception that is anything but harmless." (Emphasis in original.)
This, of course, is the same logic men use to "Christianize" any
worldly, pagan, and/or occult philosophy or practice, whether it be psychology,
"medicine," magic, the martial
arts, pyramidology, graphology, numerology, etc., etc., etc. The logic goes
something like this: "It was originated by God (which requires a few verses
out of context to "prove" it), Satan stole it and/or counterfeited it
(under the false assumption that "Satan can't create, he just steals from
God"), we need to reclaim it and re-Christianize it, and then we can use it
'to glorify God.'" In truth, such teaching encourages a deadly mixture of
humanism and Christianity in that it is much like presenting the gospel from Star
Wars or other occultic stories.
- Kennedy published an article (in The Coral Ridge Encounter, Feb. '90) that espoused the Christian's use of Elizabeth Kübler-Ross's five stages of grief (modified to four -- "... generally, everyone goes through denial, anger, depression, and acceptance"). (Kübler-Ross is a practicing transpersonal psychologist/occultist who, among other things, encourages individual efforts to achieve out-of-body experiences.)
- Kennedy encourages the celebration of Valentine's Day as a Christian observation, though it is in reality a pagan holiday Christianized by the Romish superstition (The Coral Ridge Encounter, Feb. '90).
- On a radio broadcast in December, 1990, after interviewing Dr. Jay E. Adams concerning Adams' book, The Biblical View of Self-Esteem, Self-Love, Self-Image (a book that eloquently condemns the false gospel of self that has entered into the professing Church), Kennedy exhibited his complete lack of understanding of the issue:
"If he [an individual lost sinner] will repent of those sins and turn instead in faith to accept Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, something remarkable happens to him ... he realizes he has been adopted into the family of God, that he has become a child of the King, that he is now royalty ... He is going to discover that his self-esteem has been inadvertently heightened and that he has found purpose and meaning and significance to his life and to himself, and that's where true self-esteem comes from."
- On an early-September, 1992, television show (Kennedy's program is
seen on over 675 stations nationwide), Kennedy promoted the counseling ministry
of Dr. Linda Fuhurer (Christian Counseling Services of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida),
who has an earned Ph.D. in clinical psychology. The promotion claimed that
Fuhurer studied clinical psychology in order to "help others using the
Bible and psychology together!" Kennedy agreed that "many have
been legitimately helped by psychology." Fuhurer's testimony is that
"her self-image found a new vantage point because of her conversion."
On this same television show, Kennedy offered a free book by Jack Kuhatschek, Self-Esteem: Seeing Ourselves As God Sees Us. The book's teachings are identical to the self-love nonsense taught by the secular psychologists, only dressed-up in Christian terminology and splattered with out-of-context or poorly exegeted Bible verses in order to give the impression that this is what the Bible has always taught. For example, Kuhatschek writes that man has inherent worth and beauty (p. 53); that "we are of great value to God. Otherwise, He would not have sent His only Son to die for us (p. 54)"; that to not love ourselves is evidence that we do not love Christ (p. 55); and that one must acknowledge both the old and new natures if he is to have a "healthy self-esteem," and that this is nothing more than "healthy pride" rather than "false pride [which] is often distorted and shame-based" (pp. 59-60).
- If there was still any doubt that Kennedy is a psychological integrationist in general, and a self-love advocate specifically (all the while claiming to be anti-psychology and anti-self-love), one only need read the brochure promoting Kennedy's Island Cruise '93 on "The Bible Boat" (2/8/93-2/12/93), which was touted to bring each passenger "spiritual renewal, inspiration, and fellowship." On the front cover beside a picture of Kennedy is a picture of Zig Ziglar. Inside the brochure, Ziglar is touted as "known on every continent as a 'world class' speaker, author, and statesman. Whether it be in the halls of Congress, a corporate seminar, or on national television, he shares his message of hope and humor with thousands of people each year. You will be both challenged and motivated to make a difference in 'your' world." (Emphasis in original.)
What does "world class" speaker Zig Ziglar really teach? -- a humanistic, psychological gospel of self-love/self-esteem! The following is taken from Ziglar's book, See You At the Top:
"As you accept yourself, you will see yourself as a person who truly deserves 'the good things of life' ... Shakespeare said it, 'This above all, to thine own self be true' ... Once you accept yourself for your true worth, then the symptoms of vulgarity, profanity, sloppiness, promiscuity, etc., disappear. There, my friend, goes your problem [pp. 90-91] To build your self-image, make a list of your positive qualities on a card and keep it for handy reference ... Brag on yourself from time to time. Get in your own corner ... You should also set aside a few minutes each day for the sole purpose of deliberately looking yourself in the eye. As you do this, repeat some positive affirmations of things you have done (use your victory list from step ten)" [pp. 84, 88].
Ziglar also recommends plastic surgery to improve one's self-image,
particularly in cases of "grossly oversized or undersized breasts,
- More recent evidence of Kennedy's infatuation with Freudian-/Minirth & Meier-style psychobabble came in the following 8/26/93 Coral Ridge Ministries book offers:
(a) "Let God Turn Anger and Depression in Your Life Into a Positive Force! ...Coral Ridge Ministries responds daily to many calls for help from Christians in all walks of life. Two excellent booklets are available now for those in need. When You Feel Hurt explains the emotions of hurt and anger, and How To Beat The Blahs will help you face depression.
(b) "When You Feel Hurt was written by Dwight L. Carlson, M.D., a psychiatry specialist for 12 of his 22 years in medicine. 'Repressed anger has serious, long-term effects,' according to Carlson, 'but can be a very valuable force if put to constructive use.' By understanding this powerful emotion and channeling it, we can have peace with ourselves and with God.
(c) "How to Beat the Blahs by Florence Littauer [a proponent of psycho-occultic four temperaments theory] ... is a first-hand account of her personal struggle and triumph over depression. Learn how you can recognize the symptoms of depression, come to terms with guilt, and develop your own plan for permanent peace of mind."
- Kennedy has endorsed Rapha
Hospital Treatment Centers of Houston, Texas (along with other so-called
evangelicals as Jerry
Falwell, Charles Stanley, and Beverly
LaHaye). Rapha is an organization that heavily promotes Alcoholics
codependency/recovery programs as a "Christian" methodology for
the cure of "dysfunctional" relationships. Rapha specializes in the
"treatment" of so-called codependent and/or addicted Christians by
employing an amalgamation of Adlerean-Maslowian
need psychology and the Bible. Rapha debuted in 1986 and claims to have treated
over 30,000 psychiatric in-patients since then. Today Rapha operates 120
hospital beds in twelve psychiatric units with an annual income of more than $12
million. Rapha also claims that over 2,000 churches in the U.S. are using its
materials. Kennedy is quoted as saying that, "Rapha offers a unique blend
of clinical competence and scriptural authority. They truly live up to their
biblical name." (Must reading for anyone desiring a fuller understanding of
the "codependent" heresy sweeping the church today would be 12
Steps to Destruction: Codependency/Recovery Heresies, by Martin and
Deidre Bobgan, EastGate Publishers, Santa Barbara, CA, 1991, 247 pages.)
- Kennedy supports the so-called validity and the use of psychological testing of Christians (The Coral Ridge Encounter, Feb. '90). (See PsychoHeresy, pp. 74-75, and Four Temperaments, Astrology & Personality Testing, both by Martin and Deidre Bobgan, EastGate Publishers, Santa Barbara, CA, for an excellent analyses of the worthlessness of psychological and personality testing.)
there be an award for all this psychobabble Kennedy has perpetrated on the
church? -- Now there is. In 1997, an award was established for "Service in
Christian Psychology." The award will be presented annually to recognize
Christian psychologists who are engaged in "sacrificial Christian
service." Six recipients were initially recognized and awarded $2,500 each:
Elizabeth Dole, James Dobson, Art Linkletter, D. James Kennedy, Gary
Collins, E.V. Hill, Clyde Narramore, and Charles Colson. (Source: 12/29/97, Christian
News.) So, along with his other "achievements," Kennedy is now
also recognized as a "sacrificial" psychobabbler.
- Kennedy supports and encourages participation in acts of civil disobedience, such as Randall Terry's Operation Rescue. (Kennedy wrote one of the Forewords to Terry's book Operation Rescue.) Although there are numerous cases of civil disobedience in the Scriptures, it was never engaged for the purpose of forcing an ungodly society to obey Biblical principles. Since Operation Rescue's stated purpose is to create social upheaval, and thereby pressure governments into changing the abortion laws, Kennedy's philosophy seems to be the same as OR's -- "the end justifies the means."
- In January, 1990, Kennedy turned-over the pulpit of his Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church to a "PTL Crusade" sponsored by Paul and Jan Crouch of the ecumenical and blasphemous Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN). Both Paul and Jan Crouch spoke from the pulpit as well as sat on the stage for the entire program of speakers, one of whom was Kennedy himself. Another of the speakers was ecumenical, charismatic preacher E.V. Hill (of Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church in the Watts section of Los Angeles), who during his message praised Jesse Jackson (radical social activist) and Jack Hyles (First Baptist Church Hammond's [Indiana] who claims to have the world's largest Sunday school bus ministry -- some of Hyles' church leaders [including Hyles] have also been implicated in immorality scandals [some of whom have even been convicted of child molesting charges]). Hill is also linked with liberal groups such as the National Council of Churches and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (which endorsed the early-1993 gay march on Washington, D.C.!).
Kennedy continues to identify with the hyper-charismatic Paul Crouch -- the same 1/90 Crusade program detailed above was aired again on TBN in 10/93 and again in 7/95 (tape #0125-90). In addition, in Crouch's 2/93 Praise the Lord paper Crouch says: "God is bringing His church together! The old denominational barriers are coming down! Just a few months ago, we had the privilege of joining with Dr. D. James Kennedy and many [other] pastors and ministers from across our nation for a great Call to Prayer for America!" Kennedy is pictured with Paul and Jan Crouch in this PTL issue. (Kennedy also appeared on Crouch's 5/17/94 TBN show to promote his [Kennedy's] book What if Jesus Had Never Been Born?)
- The National Day of Prayer for 1993 (5/6/93), with the theme "United in Prayer," was chaired by Mrs. James (Shirley) Dobson. Pat Boone and Mrs. Bill Bright were co-chairmen. Ecumenicals such as E.V. Hill, Bill Bright, and Charles Colson were on the National Advisory Committee. Also listed in National Day of Prayer literature as "Liaisons" were a Jewish rabbi, a Catholic cardinal, and Dr. D. James Kennedy. [Kennedy was also a participant in 1994's and 1995's National Day of Prayer.]
- Kennedy is an active member of COR (Coalition on Revival), a Reconstructionist/Dominionist organization dedicated to a social gospel/activism agenda that proposes to impose Biblical standards (e.g., Old Testament law) on unbelieving peoples and institutions. Kennedy is also a Steering Committee member of COR, and was scheduled to be the moderator for the first phase of COR's 1994 Church Council on theology (held 7/25/94-7/30/94 at Campus Crusade's Arrowhead Springs Hotel in San Bernardino, California), which seeks to establish doctrine on 24 topics in nine major areas, one of which is "Unity of the Body of Christ in any city as non-optional." He was a signator to all of COR's founding documents. As an indication of what the people affiliated with COR believe, the following is from a recent brochure announcing the 12th Annual Northwest Conference for Christian Reconstruction. Does this not sound like a different gospel? (All emphases added):
"The Christian Reconstruction movement believes that the Bible contains not only a message of personal salvation through the blood of Christ shed on the cross, but also a comprehensive law structure which is alone able to provide a just basis for society. It is committed to the view that sovereignty and thus government belong to God, and that all delegated government, whether to family, church or state (civil government), is to be exercised in obedience to the law of God's covenant. Furthermore, salvation involves every aspect of man's life and thus also the relationships he sustains to the world around him. The exercise of dominion in accordance with the terms of God's covenant is therefore basic and vital to the Christian faith. To neglect this is to deprecate the extent of Christ's victory at Calvary."
That Kennedy has no problem identifying with this movement is a bit disconcerting to say the least. (For details of COR's unbiblical strategy for "taking the world for Christ," see COR' documents titled A Manifesto for the Christian Church, Forty-two Articles of the Essentials of a Christian World View, and Twenty-five Articles of Affirmation and Denial on the Kingdom of God. These three documents, along with COR's 17 Sphere/World View Documents, make up what COR calls its "20 COR World View Documents.")
- In a promotional piece sent to ministry supporters in November, 1992, Kennedy listed ten things to be thankful for. Number ten was "I am thankful that I live in America, a free nation established by Christian patriots upon Christian principles." This is the standard "Christian-America" myth promoted by the Dominionists and Reconstructionists. [See The Search For Christian America by Noll, Hatch, and Marsden, for a thorough, documented debunking of this myth.] Proof of Kennedy's Dominionist/Reconstructionist theology comes from his own statement on the inside of this promotional piece:
"Dr. Kennedy and Coral Ridge Ministries are dedicated to three important purposes ... 3. Reforming the Culture -- protecting religious liberty and America's Christian heritage by encouraging the application of Biblical principles to our culture." (Emphasis added.)
Along these same lines, Kennedy and his church sponsored the third annual
"Reclaiming America for Christ" Conference (3/1/96-3/3/96; at $95 per
attendee). Speakers included Ed Meese (former U.S. Attorney General), U.S.
Senator John Ashcroft, Gary Bauer (president of Family Research Council), Roman
Catholics Phyllis Schlafly and Paul Weyrich, ecumenical charismatic
Ben Kinchlow (co-host of Pat
Robertson's 700 Club), psycho-financial guru Larry
Burkett, Dr. Ronald Nash (of Reformed Seminary conducted a "Teen
Track" for more than 100 teenagers), and CCM religious rocker Phil
Driscoll. The purpose was to "equip and motivate Christians to impact
American culture for Christ. Kennedy said, "The key to our nation's
survival is the return of Christians to positions of influence and authority in
our nation's political and cultural institutions. ... to kindle a passion in the
hearts of those who come, to reengage American culture and public life with the
claims of Jesus Christ" (3/25/96, Christian News).
- Another example of the extent to which men like Kennedy will go in the pursuit of furthering the social gospel, Kennedy held a position with Sun Myung Moon's now-defunct Coalition for Religious Freedom (CRF). (Moon is the founder of the Unification Church, and the self-proclaimed Messiah to the world.) Other so-called evangelicals that served with Kennedy at CRF as executive committee and/or advisory board members were Tim LaHaye (CRF's paid chairman!), Don Wildmon (founder and president of the social activist American Family Association), Paul Crouch (TBN Network's infamous founder), Hal Lindsey, Marlin Maddoux (Point Of View nationwide radio talk show host), and charismatics James Robison and Jimmy Swaggart -- an agenda of social activism certainly makes for strange ecumenical bedfellows. (Reported in the November 1990, Omega-Letter.)
- In 1987, Bill Bright of Campus Crusade, founded a "broad-based coalition of denominations and World Christian leaders" called New Life 2000. Billy Graham is the honorary chairman of an advisory board of 1,000 leading professing Christians. These "Christian" leaders include James Dobson from Focus on the Family, James Kennedy of Coral Ridge Ministries, Charles Stanley, and Ted Engstrom, founder of World Vision and acting chairman of the committee. Jay Gary is an author, consultant, and partner with New Age occultist, Robert Muller. (Gary is directly promoting the philosophies of the World Parliament of Religions, the United Nations agenda for education via Robert Mueller's Global Core curriculum, and Global 2000, a plan whose goals include reduction of the world's population by the year 2000. In a best seller entitled Megatrends 2000, endorsed by Gary/Muller's newsletter as well as New Ager Marilyn Ferguson, the author devotes an entire chapter to religion, speaking favorably of New Age perspectives.) Gary is also communications consultant with New Life 2000, Campus Crusade's A.D. 2000 counterpart. Rome has, in fact, its own branch of AD 2000 called "Evangelization 2000."
- Campus Crusade founder Bill Bright fasted 40 days during the summer
of 1994, during which he claims to have received a "prophecy from God"
that a mighty revival is coming. He then issued a call for hundreds of liberals,
charismatics, and new-evangelicals to gather in Orlando 12/5/94-12/7/94 to fast
and pray for revival. An Invitation Committee made up of a hodgepodge of 72
liberals, new evangelicals, and charismatics was formed. Included
were: Robert Schuller, Charles Colson, E.V. Hill, Jack Hayford, James Dobson,
W.A. Criswell, Charles Stanley, Paul Crouch, Luis Palau, Bill Gothard, Pat
Robertson, Kay Arthur, and Larry Burkett. CCC's Bill Bright cites "a great
sense of urgency to link arms and unitedly call upon God for help in the spirit
of King Jehoshaphat (2 Chr. 20)." This ecumenical "linking" is in
the "spirit of Jehoshaphat" indeed, but the Jehoshaphat of 2 Chr. 18
(instead of 2 Chr. 20) where he "linked" with wicked King Ahab and
incurred the wrath of God. (Reported in the 11/15/94, Calvary Contender.)
[Another three-day "Fasting & Prayer" conference was held in 11/95
in Los Angeles; it attracted 3,500 "evangelicals" and charismatics.
The Invitation/Host Committee for this event included
most of those listed above, plus Dick Eastman, Chuck Smith, Bill McCartney
(Promise Keepers), Tim and Beverly LaHaye, Shirley Dobson, Paul Cedar (E-Free),
Ted Engstrom (World Vision), Joseph Stowell (Moody), and Joseph Aldrich (Multnomah).
A third conference was held 11/14/96-11/16/96 in St. Louis. New additions to the
Host Committee included Max Lucado, Henry Blackaby, Loren Cunningham (YWAM),
Greg Laurie, Dennis Rainey, Randy Phillips (Promise Keepers), Josh McDowell, D.
James Kennedy, Howard Hendricks, and Neil Anderson. (Conferences have been
held every year now, but there is an uncertain future with Bill Bright’s
August 2001 retirement from Campus Crusade, and Bright’s death in 2003.)
- Kennedy's love for the Church of Rome can be well documented:
(a) Evangelism Explosion (EE) is an organization founded by Kennedy in 1962 (named after his best selling book), and claims to have a ministry in all 211 nations of the world. EE is training Catholics in Catholic churches, and James Kennedy has not only defended the practice, but has expressed no concern for the fact that people would thus be brought into the bondage of Romanism. The problem is not so much that Catholics are sometimes present for EE training sessions. The problem is that the training is actually given by EE, specifically for Roman Catholics, within a Roman Catholic setting. When asked about this, the senior vice-president of Evangelism Explosion had this to say: "As far as we have been able to ascertain to this date, the Roman Catholics who are being trained in Evangelism Explosion in their respective churches are faithfully declaring the Gospel in its essence. The effort to bring people into membership in their church is strictly a secondary concern" (Biblical Missions, Jul./Aug. 1985).
(b) Kennedy thinks nothing of preaching on the same platform with Catholic priests and modernists. He was one of the speakers for the 4/80 "Washington for Jesus" rally. Fellow speakers included Catholic priests John Bertolucci, John Randall, and Michael Scanlon; liberal blasphemer Robert Schuller; and a host of radical charismatics, including Jim Bakker of the PTL, Pat Robertson of the 700 Club, and Demos Shakarian of the Full Gospel Business Men's Fellowship International. (F.B.F. News Bulletin, Jul.-Aug. 1986).
(c) Kennedy appeared as a guest with Catholic priest John Bertolucci, and radical charismatics Paul Yonggi Cho, Oral Roberts, and Demos Shakarian, during the premier broadcast week for the launching in 1986 of the Rock Christian Network (F.B.F. News Bulletin, Jul.-Aug. 1986).
(d) In 8/88, Kennedy participated in the ecumenical "Congress '88" in Chicago. The Archbishop of Chicago, Joseph Cardinal Bernardin, brought the opening address of the Congress. This faithful son of Rome was introduced as a "warm, caring, Christ-honoring, Christ-like brother" (Frank Bumpus, "New-Evangelicals United with Catholics and Liberals," F.B.F. News Bulletin, Nov.-Dec. 1988). Kennedy also joined Jerry Falwell in founding the ecumenical Moral Majority, which encouraged Catholic participation (Flirting With Rome, Vol. 2, p. 30).
(e) Kennedy was one of the sponsors for the Billy Graham Central Park Rally in New York City in 1991. At the rally, Graham thanked Roman Catholic Cardinal O'Connor and the area archbishops for their support. Graham also expressed appreciation to the Jewish Rabbis in New York City. When extending the invitation at the close of his message, Graham invited individuals to "come back to the Lord" by "renewing" their "vows of baptism or confirmation." (Reported in the March-April 1992 Fundamentalist Digest.) Kennedy was also a scheduled speaker at Billy Graham's '92 School of Evangelism (see 2/1/92, Calvary Contender).
(f) Kennedy had "Mother" Teresa as a guest on his 5/3/97 Truths That Transform radio program. She was speaking on the subject of "love." The announcer for Kennedy stated warmly, "Who better to speak on love than Mother Teresa?"
- Announced at a press conference on 3/29/94 was an ecumenical
declaration titled "Evangelicals
and Catholics Together: The Christian Mission in the Third Millennium" (ECT).
The negotiations toward the declaration were initiated in 9/92 by Chuck Colson
and Richard Neuhaus (former liberal Lutheran clergyman (ELCA) turned Catholic
priest) under the auspices of the ecumenical and theologically liberal Institute
on Religion and Public Life (headed by Neuhaus). The declaration starts with
"We are Evangelical Protestants and Roman Catholics who have been led
through prayer, study, and discussion to common convictions about Christian
faith and mission." It goes down-hill from there. The coalition
specifically called for an end to aggressive proselytizing of each other's
flocks (in effect, a mutual non-aggression pact). The signers of the Accord also
confessed their past sins against Catholic/Protestant unity.
The declaration said: "All who accept Christ as Lord and Savior are brothers and sisters in Christ." This conveniently ignores the fact that Catholics espouse a works-salvation false gospel! In a revealing admission of what brought these groups together, some signers said it was the experiences of worshiping together in the charismatic movement and working together in political causes such as anti-abortion [Moral Majority for example]. In fact, one writer correctly assessed that the declaration "amounts to a truce on theological issues so that the parties can continue to cooperate on political issues."
Forty people signed or endorsed the document (20 Catholics and 20 so-called evangelicals), including Protestants J.I. Packer, Pat Robertson, Bill Bright, Os Guinness, and Mark Noll (a historian at Wheaton College who said, "Evangelicals can no longer consider Catholics as ogres or anti-Christs"). Catholic endorsers included six priests, three bishops, one Archbishop, and one Cardinal. By joint declaration, then, J.I. Packer and friends have, in effect, declared the Protestant Reformation a tragic mistake!
In January of 1995, the neo-evangelical host of the John Ankerberg Show announced a 2/8/95 seminar to be held at D. James Kennedy 's church (Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida). Other participants in the seminar (to supposedly expose the errors in the ECT) were Ankerberg, Kennedy, John MacArthur, and psychologizer R.C. Sproul. [Ankerberg produced a 6-part video series of this seminar (titled "Protestants and Catholics: Do They Now Agree?"), and aired it on six consecutive Sunday evenings starting 3/5/95. Kennedy was seated on the grandiose stage with MacArthur and Sproul, while Ankerberg stood at a table in the audience, serving as host-moderator.]
The ECT Accord generated so much heat in Protestant ranks, that Colson found it necessary to call a meeting in January, 1995 to try "to achieve a measure of understanding, clarification, and harmony around the truth recognized by historic orthodoxy" (1/25/95 Prison Fellowship News Release -- "Evangelical Leaders Resolve Differences On Evangelical-Catholic Paper"). Attending the 1/19/95 peace meeting (also held at Kennedy's Coral Ridge facility) were ECT signers Colson, Packer, Bright, and Kent Hill, along with a group of so-called evangelicals critical of the ECT (i.e., the "anti-ECT group") -- John Ankerberg, John MacArthur, R.C. Sproul, D. James Kennedy, Joseph Stowell, Michael Horton, and John Woodbridge.
After the meeting, Colson, Bright, Packer, and Hill issued a joint doctrinal statement supposedly clarifying their position on the ECT. However, no changes to the ECT were recommended, nor would any of the original signators remove their names from it. Ankerberg, MacArthur, Kennedy, Sproul, et al., did not sign this clarification agreement, but they did help write it, and the clear implication was that they agreed that this new statement satisfactorily answered any concern one might have over the content of the original ECT! [See Colson's 1/25/95 news release; the 3/6/95 Christianity Today, "Evangelicals Clarify Accord with Catholics," pp. 52-53; and the 6-part John Ankerberg Show video series (titled "Protestants and Catholics: Do They Now Agree?"). Concerning the latter, Ankerberg states eight different times over the course of the six programs that he and the others in the anti-ECT group helped write the so-called clarification agreement.]
On Ankerberg's second program, the program's participants agreed that it was possible to have "parachurch cooperation with evangelically committed Roman Catholics for the pursuit of agreed objectives" without implying "acceptance of Roman Catholic doctrinal distinctives or endorsement of the Roman Catholic church system"! (1/19/95, "Statement By Protestant Signers To ECT," paragraph #1). It didn't seem to bother them that this statement, which, by their own admission, they helped write, does not agree with what God's Word says! (Amos 3:3 states: Can two walk together except they be agreed?) Kennedy and his neo-evangelical brethren have now, in effect, stipulated to words that are in direct conflict with the Word of God! God says if you fellowship with unbelievers in joint projects, you have identified with the doctrine of the co-participants (see also 2 John 9-11).
"[Kennedy] and the others thus lend credence to, serve as 'bridges' to, and refuse to separate from, those who promote ecumenical endeavors with roman Catholics. The 'clarified' ECT Doctrinal Statement changed nothing" (5/1/95, Calvary Contender).
- Kennedy also demonstrates a favorable inclination towards another document of evangelical compromise with Catholicism -- "The Gospel of Jesus Christ: An Evangelical Celebration" (EC). Dr. Bill Jackson, president of the Association of Fundamentalists Evangelizing Catholics (AFEC), prepared a 6/18/99 statement on the EC document (see the 6/14/99, Christianity Today for the full text of the EC). This document has been endorsed by Charles Colson, Bill Bright, and J.I. Packer, all of whom also signed the controversial ECT documents of 1994 and 1997; as well as endorsed by R.C. Sproul, John MacArthur, and D. James Kennedy, all of whom publicly [albeit weakly] challenged and criticized them for signing the ECT documents. There are a number of helpful statements in this latest document which deal with areas which were not fully dealt with in the ECT documents (e.g., imputation is now dealt with favorably, but has been consistently opposed by Roman Catholic Councils and Catechisms). EC says, "We cannot embrace any form of doctrinal indifferentism by which God's truth is sacrificed for a false peace." But there is certainly no better example of "doctrinal indifferentism" than the ECT documents themselves (James 1:8)! Because ECT I stated that "Evangelicals and Catholics are brothers and sisters in Christ," in order to be relevant, the new EC document should be submitted to the Roman Catholics who signed ECT I and II. It is difficult to see how a person could subscribe to both ECT and EC. The only logical conclusion is for all who signed EC to remove their names from ECT.
It also appears that the so-called "evangelical" ECT endorsers have been "let off the hook" by former critics such as D. James Kennedy. We believe EC will be used to rehabilitate those who erred in 1994 and 1997, without their having to admit or ask forgiveness for their error. (Source: 7/15/99, Calvary Contender.) [Other "evangelical" endorsers of EC among the 15 members of the Drafting Committee and 114 members of the Endorsing Committee include John Ankerberg, Kay Arthur, Tony Evans, Jerry Falwell, Bill Hybels, David Jeremiah, Max Lucado, Woodrow Kroll, Tim & Beverly LaHaye, Erwin Lutzer, Bill McCartney, Luis Palau, Pat Robertson, Ronald Sider, Charles Stanley, John Stott, Joseph Stowell, Chuck Swindoll, Bruce Wilkinson, and Ravi Zacharias; also endorsing EC were hyper-charismatics Jack Hayford and Steven Strang.]
However ignorant Kennedy and fellow EC sympathizers may be of all this, his participation in EC document makes him a party to its consequences. It is also important to note that the EC document (which is supposed to be a definitive and comprehensive statement of the true saving Gospel of Christ) never mentions repentance for salvation, and never mentions the total depravity of man (thereby leaning towards a decisional regeneration). Moreover, the EC promotes an ecumenical unity (via "trans-denominational cooperative enterprises") with all professing believers who attest to the EC's "essentials" of the faith. But this is not the unity of the faith taught in Ephesians. While we are instructed by Scripture to be of one mind, the evangelical today scoffs at the idea of true Biblical unity based on complete agreement with, and submission to, God's holy Word. The only use of the word "unity" in the New Testament is found in Ephesians chapter four. It is a "unity of the Spirit" (v. 3), not of men. It is a "unity of faith" (v. 13) based on sound doctrine for which believers are to contend, not water down nor reclassify into essentials and non-essentials (Jude 3). No real spiritual unity can exist apart from doctrinal unity, and we are to "mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them" (Rom. 16:17).
- Promise Keepers is the gigantic new (1991) "men's movement" among professing evangelical Christians. Its roots are Catholic and charismatic to the core. PK's contradictory stand on homosexuality; its promotion of secular psychology; its unscriptural feminizing of men; its depiction of Jesus as a "phallic messiah" tempted to perform homosexual acts; and its ecumenical and unbiblical teachings should dissuade any true Christian from participating. Promise Keepers is proving to be one of the most ungodly and misleading movements in the annals of Christian history. Nevertheless, Kennedy is a promoter of this ecumenical, charismatic, psychologized men's movement. In a salute to Promise Keepers and its founder, Bill McCartney, on Kennedy's 9/18/94 television show, Kennedy claimed that the 1990s will be the decade of the "post-sensitive man" (the "1980s was the decade of the sensitive man -- Alan Alda style"). Kennedy said this about Promise Keepers:
"But happily, in addition to the secular revolution of men leading them out into the woods and to their tom-toms, there is also a Christian men's revolution that is underway that I think portends very good and positive things. And who is it that is leading the way; it is an organization known as Promise Keepers. The main thing they're trying to do is to inculcate in men to get them to keep their promises."
Kennedy closed the program with a film profile of Bill McCartney,
conveniently omitting any reference to McCartney's hyper-charismatic (Vineyard
movement) orientation. [Note: In early-1995, Kennedy taped
a favorable radio interview with Robert Hicks concerning Hicks' blasphemous book
Masculine Journey. Promise Keepers has endorsed Hicks' book and
continues to defend Hicks and his "theology" espoused in the book.]
- Kennedy's evangelism efforts have always been quite ecumenical. He endorsed Pat Robertson's efforts to form "a grass roots coalition of Evangelicals, conservative Catholics, and their allies ... to make government and the media responsible to our concerns. It's high time we realize strength that comes through unity." (Reported in the September 1990, Omega-Letter.) Robertson began this effort in October, 1989, with the formation of the Christian Coalition.
In 1990, Robertson started the American Center For Law and Justice (ACLJ), a law group providing free legal counsel for Christians in battle with "anti-God, anti-family groups." Executive director of the ACLJ is former Ohio prosecutor Keith Fournier, a charismatic Catholic activist and former Dean of Evangelism and legal counsel at the Roman Catholic (Franciscan) University of Steubenville in Ohio. Fournier has authored Evangelical Catholics, a book which is a plea for Protestants to join Catholics in a joint evangelization effort; i.e., an "evangelistic endeavor" that will "evangelize" the world by the year 2000." Fournier, speaking of Kennedy and others in Evangelical Catholics. "I found not only a tremendous openness to my presence but also a growing respect for my church and a thawing in what had been hard ice in the past." [See end of Colson report for a review of Evangelical Catholics.]
In addition, in endorsing ecumenical evangelist Luis Palau's 1991 book Say Yes!, Kennedy says: "Luis Palau is indeed one of the premier evangelists in all of the world. He is doctrinally sound and extraordinarily gifted in communicating the Gospel." Palau is a Catholic sympathizer whose ecumenical message is heavily diluted with pop psychology and Arminian easy-believism.