Posted in theology

How does ‘hyper-patriarchy’ get born?

By Elizabeth Prata

How does hyper-patriarchy get born? As with any doctrine, intense fixation on one part of a doctrine while ignoring others will throw a believer off balance. This skews discernment. One of two things happens then. When a person is confronted with the biblical facts, they either by grace of God see through the lens of the Bible, and repent; or they double down. The latter is in my opinion due to a process known as “Deception by Investment.”(Phrase not coined by me).

Deception by investment is when a person begins to suspect their favorite teacher is a false teacher, they continue with the deception because they’ve invested so much of their life in them. They’ve invested their reputation. They’ve invested their money. They’d rather persist in deception and suppress the truth rather than admit they were deceived and abandon their investment, opening themselves up to what they see as reputational damage or ridicule.

Hyper patriarchy is an excessive devotion to one part of the patriarchal family system the Bible commands while excluding others. Patriarchy exists. It was the established pattern of faith in the Old Testament (I mean, The Patriarchs! Acts 7:9, Acts 2:29, Hebrews 7:4…) and in today’s life still resounds with the men as leaders and the women as helpmeet. Genesis 2:18 still stands, it hasn’t been erased from the Bible.

Men are called to submit to Jesus, and are called to lead at home. He submits mutually with His wife. But ultimately as on a ship there is only one captain, when it comes to ultimate decisions, the husband decides as the biblically identified leader of the family. The wife submits to her husband, and the children submit to the parents.

In hyper-patriarchy, a person excessively and almost solely focuses on the husband’s leadership, which sadly is often twisted into a husband’s rulership. In some quarters, it is recommended that the wife call her husband ‘lord’. As I said, rulership.

In this false system, proponents ignore or do not teach that the husband graciously submits to Jesus as Jesus submitted to the Father. They ignore or do not teach that marriage is a picture of Jesus and His Bride. They ignore or do not teach that marriage is a parable of the Gospel.

They just keep harping on “the woman submits”, “the woman submits”, “the woman submits”, “the woman submits”, “the woman submits”…

In Genesis 3:1, the serpent focused on one part of God’s command, and twisted it slightly. He didn’t restate what God had said,

From any tree of the garden you may freely eat; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for on the day that you eat from it you will certainly die.” (Genesis 2:16).

The serpent asked, (not restated), to Eve, (not Adam),

“Has God really said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” (Genesis 3:1b).

The serpent knew perfectly well what God had said, but he focused on one part- ‘you shall not eat’ rather than ‘you may freely eat.’ People who twist God’s word do the same. After all, they learned from the OG of Falsity.

I wrote recently about balance in our theology. I’d said,

We should absorb the whole counsel of God. We should share the whole counsel of God. In other words, as Christians, we seek balance in our learning. As with anything in life, we strive to be well-rounded.

Balance in our theology is important

Genesis 3:1 says the serpent is the most subtle creature in the garden. He can twist anything good into something false and still make it sound good.

In the end, hyper-patriarchy gets born because someone has an agenda, or they have a personal pet idol based on fleshly desires. They are not interested in the whole counsel of God. In discernment, watch out for people, or systems, or ministries that are hyper-focused on one doctrine. It is these that usually go off the rails first and spectacularly.

Further Reading

Tim Challies resoundingly negatively reviews hyperpatriarchy pusher Debi Pearl’s “Created to be His Helpmeet“. And if you know Challies’ reviews, the book has to be a horror show for him to utter anything even a toe into the side of negative.
“Much of Pearl’s counsel is utterly heartless and even that which is not is too often proud and terse and utterly devoid of biblical wisdom. She displays a distinct lack of wisdom.”

Posted in theology

‘The cheese shall inherit the earth’

By Elizabeth Prata

EPrata photo

I wrote on my other blog yesterday about the food haul I scored at Kroger. I am trying my best to manage my budget with these ever-rising food prices. Since I’m so intolerant of processed foods I can’t cheap out or take any shortcuts with my menu. I have to cook everything I eat myself and it has to be fresh. I go thru copious mounts of fruit and veggies, and I try to find reasonably priced seafood and chicken. It’s getting harder.

One thing Kroger does is have rotisserie chickens for sale. I like chicken if it’s already cooked and I can slice off my own meat, ensuring nothing texturally off is going to make me gag and turn away from chicken forever, lol.

The rotisserie chickens are getting smaller, I noticed, and the price is creeping up. They are $8 now. But when they mark them down to $4.25 and I have the $1.25-off coupon I feel like the Queen of the World when I can score a whole, cooked chicken for $3.

Lately I’ve been having tofu, eggs a that a friend in church gives away, and quinoa for my proteins, so I was ready for something more substantial. I was on the hunt for chicken!!

I stopped in after church and headed straight for the spot where the cooked chickens are kept.

EPrata photo

But now I must digress for a moment. Before I was saved, I used to enjoy Monty Python, both the 1960-1970s TV show, and their movies. The film The Life of Brian tells the story of Brian Cohen (played by Graham Chapman), a young Jewish-Roman man who is born on the same day as—and next door to—Jesus, and is subsequently mistaken for the Messiah. It was one of the highest grossing movies in 1979, and is listed as one of the top 50 funniest movies. It was not without controversy, as you might expect. It was banned in several countries, it was picketed for blasphemy, and so on.

Me as a pagan, well, all that just made me want to see it all the more. There was one scene I remember and enjoyed the most. It was when a figure of the real Jesus was giving the Sermon on the Mount, distantly, and the people at the bottom of the mount had a hard time hearing it clearly. I remember it this way, though the actual scene in the movie is slightly different.

[Distant figure of Jesus saying] ‘The cheese shall inherit the earth’
[Crowd member] Aw, why should they get it?

I laughed. It’s just like us sinful humans, isn’t it?! To be jealous of what someone else has. Glad I’m not like that!

So back to Kroger. I’m pushing the grocery cart toward the chicken area, almost there, and just then I see a woman pulling away with three marked down chickens in her cart. WHAT?! Did she take all of them? Why should she get it?

I stewed and fumed.


Wait a minute. I AM like that!

I talked myself down from the cliff. I decided to not think that she was greedy. I decided to think that maybe she has a large family. Maybe she has 2 friends who would appreciate the chickens. Maybe she is going to make chicken pot pies for the homeless.

I don’t know her deal, but I know my deal. The Bible tells us not to covet what others have. It also tells us to think of others above ourselves. It also tells us that God will provide. It tells us to rejoice with others. And more. So many verses I was breaking. I repented and asked the Spirit to turn my mind from my covetous anger.

God reveals sin to us and I thank Him that He revealed it immediately. I pray we recognize this reveal when it happens. I haven’t bribed anyone lately, I haven’t murdered anyone recently. I haven’t committed ‘big sins’ but I do commit sin. ‘Little’ sins are sins. Momentary sins are sins.

I can’t be SO focused on the deal that I overlook the people. If He’d wanted me to have the chickens, He’d have arranged for me to arrive 5 seconds earlier rather than 5 seconds later. Trusting that the Lord will provide is a big ask, but it helps to grow our faith. Apparently I have a ways to go in that department.

But how wonderful that we can repent to our Savior and He forgives us. How wonderful really, that He reveals our sin to us. How wonderful that He puts both big and little hurdles in front of us so we can grow in holiness.

As Jerry Bridges wrote in his fantastic book “Respectable Sins”,

“One of our problems, however, is that we neither think of ourselves as saints — with our new state’s concurrent responsibility to live as saints, nor do we think of such actions as our gossip and impatience as sin. Sin is what people outside our Christian communities do. We can readily identify sin in the immoral or unethical conduct of people in society at large. But we often fail to see it in what I call the “acceptable sins of the saints.” In effect, we, like society at large, live in denial of our sin.”

“[W]e can be orthodox in our theology and circumspect in our morality and yet tolerate in our lives some of the subtle “acceptable” sins we are discussing in these chapters. I believe that all of us have “blind spots,” character flaws, or subtle sins, that we are not aware of.”

Let’s keep our consciences sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading us to conviction of our sins. I’m not a super-saint. In this case I repented eagerly and immediately. Other times, the Spirit has had to metaphorically hit me upside the head with a 2X4 long after. But the main idea is, we should always strive to keep growing in holiness.

The Westminster Confession of Faith says of Sanctification:

1. They, who are once effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart, and a new spirit created in them, are further sanctified, really and personally, through the virtue of Christ’s death and resurrection, by his Word and Spirit dwelling in them: the dominion of the whole body of sin is destroyed, and the several lusts thereof are more and more weakened and mortified; and they more and more quickened and strengthened in all saving graces, to the practice of true holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.

2. This sanctification is throughout, in the whole man; yet imperfect in this life, there abiding still some remnants of corruption in every part; whence ariseth a continual and irreconcilable war, the flesh lusting against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh.

3. In which war, although the remaining corruption, for a time, may much prevail; yet, through the continual supply of strength from the sanctifying Spirit of Christ, the regenerate part doth overcome; and so, the saints grow in grace, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

Sigh. Onward and upward. Only way to go.

The ‘weak’ in the verse is me, not the chicken

Posted in atheism, end time, falling away, prophecy

There’s no such thing as an ex-Christian

By Elizabeth Prata

There’s no such thing as an ex-Christian. Look at 1 John-

They went out from us, but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us.” (1 John 2:19)

John is saying here that people who ‘backslide’ and then fall away from the faith entirely, a symptom of the end times by the way, never really were saved to begin with. “They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him,” (Titus 1:15).

So what do we say to the verse in 1 Timothy 4:1-3 which states that many will fall away?

Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. (1 Tim 4:1-3)

Again those who fell away were never really one of Jesus’ elect to begin with.

And before the person started falling away, in came sneaky heresies they began listening to. They enjoyed these false teachings and heresies because their darkened heart had never experienced the light.

But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. (2 Peter 2:1)

For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ. (Jude 1:4)

So the progression is: profess Christ by mouth… but since there was no visible fruit to show the state of grace they were claiming on the inside, they were never really saved & regeneration never occurred; fail to walk closely with Jesus by procrastinating in discipleship, Bible study, prayer, and/or worship, furthering the distance between themselves and Jesus; (OR, faithfully attending church and Bible study but due to hard heart always were learning but never able to come to knowledge of the truth); listen to or promote destructive heresies that either they knowingly or unknowingly begin to believe, start doubting Christ’s sufficiency; doubt more, and then slide into apostasy’s full blown renunciation and end up in a state of atheism.

Peter says “For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first.” (2 Peter 2:20)

Notice the words that both Jude and Peter use to describe the heresies what will infiltrate the church in the last days; “secretly” and “crept in”. The heresies don’t come into the church by way of aggressive men bellowing a ‘new doctrine’ to the delight of followers who joyfully jump their pews and run out the door to his new church.

No, they come sneakily, secretly, subtly. And no wonder, “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made…” (Genesis 3:1) so satan isn’t going to capture hearts with bellicose attitudes or flagrantly detectable bad doctrine. Many of the preachers and teachers will not even openly pronounce their heresies, they will be secret within their heart and only after a while, introduced slyly. Jude’s words “crept in” also indicate something that also isn’t readily detectable and is subtle at the start.

These teachers will have a big, white smile, open their lecture with a warm joke, and tell you that Jesus was a good, moral teacher and that you deserve the best life now. They will never tell you that your best life is later and that Jesus didn’t come to be a moral leader but to seek and save the lost- And that you are lost.

Others will tell you that we are all one universal consciousness, we are our own gods, and then, they will give you a car. They will tell you that if you believe in Jesus, He will make your life better, while you are seeking Him from comfy ampitheatre watching a techno-sermon with a cappuccino in your hand. Seeker-sensitive churches are false on its premise because in Romans we learn that no one seeks God.

The end result of a Christian in name only – that is, one who claimed Jesus but never really believed – and is one who is at risk of being tempted by destructive heresies, and ultimately of apostasy. What comes next is atheism.

Atheism is a natural cul-de-sac in the road away from the cross. writes:

“At the same time, it takes just as much faith to believe in atheism. To make the absolute statement “God does not exist” is to make a claim of knowing absolutely everything there is to know about everything and of having been everywhere in the universe and having witnessed everything there is to be seen. [I]t cannot be proven that God does not exist. It takes just as much faith to be an atheist as it does to be a theist.”

Which, I suspect, could be one of the reasons Peter said it makes a person worse off from what they were before. After apostasy settles in and atheism rears its head, a person is well and truly now in the dangerous pits of despair, misplacing their burgeoning faith in Something for a faith in Nothing that will last forever.

An interesting article appeared in Maine Family Policy Council’s online publication, The Record:

“While there may be a diversity of opinion about the nature of God, no one in state government has stepped forward to doubt His existence. Atheism remains a strong taboo in political circles, in part because of the widely-held belief that faith in God is the mainstay of civil society. Eight state constitutions explicitly forbid atheists from holding public office. Tennessee’s state constitution gives the clearest statement in this regard:”

“No person who denies the being of God, or a future state of rewards and punishments, shall hold any office in the civil department of this state.” –end article

It all starts with destructive heresies, ungodly men creeping in unnoticed. And why aren’t they noticed? Because Christians today all too often fail to be familiar with the real thing. They abandon Bible study, quiet time, prayers, and worship, so that when the counterfeit shows up, being only subtly different from the Truth, it goes unnoticed.

What today’s Christian needs is larger doses of the above, not smaller. As times get tougher and stress makes a person weary, as work loads increase and family strife abounds, people fall away from the paving stones of a faith that lead from the cross to glory. This process separates the Christians In Name Only from the true believers. Are you worried about your salvation? Are you unsure? Has there been no visible fruit in your life for a while? You are at risk. Repent. Take it to the cross, and make sure you are saved. Apostasy is a ‘subtil’ thing, as subtle as satan. Has he crept into your heart?

Posted in end time, holy, prophecy, repent

Holy is a word we need to hear more of

By Elizabeth Prata

Holiness is the central point of all of the story of Redemption. God is Holy. That means He is perfect, sinless, well, Holy.

And one called out to another and said, “Holy, Holy, Holy, is the LORD of hosts, The whole earth is full of His glory.” (Isaiah 6:3)

Humans are not holy. We were originally created sinless, perfect, but through free will, Adam and Eve in the garden decided to follow the serpent’s suggestion to eat the forbidden fruit, and in doing so, directly disobeyed a command from God. That is what sin IS, disobeying God. Sin is anything we think, say, or do that displeases God. Since we have thoughts, words and actions that displease God all the time, and couldn’t stop if we tried, it means we are sinners with a sin nature. Paul refers to our sinful nature in Galatians:

The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. (Galatians 6:8)

Even if you do not believe in Adam and Eve and the garden and the forbidden fruit, you know deep down, that you are a corrupt person who does wrong things. Even if you ever said one lie to spare a person’s feelings (“Yes, that dress looks great on you!”) you are disqualified from being with God in heaven. Why? His Holiness is eternal. So is that lie. Sin is eternal, too. It doesn’t go away after you say it or do it or think it. It remains. And your sin and His holiness shall never meet.

Why would a liar think he is qualified for heaven? A cheater? As self-admitted liars and cheats and adulterers, and gossips and lusty people, why do we think we are “a basically a good person” and therefore qualified to dwell forever with a Holy God? We aren’t.

However, God so desires a relationship with us, that He made a way. He sent Jesus to us. I used to think that Jesus first came to us at Bethlehem on Christmas. But that is not so. He has been with God since the beginning. Genesis 1:1-26 shows that the Father God, Jesus and the Spirit were all involved in the Creation. And just in case there is confusion on this point, John 1:1-3 says

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

At one point known only to God, God said

“I will surely tell of the decree of the LORD: He said to Me, ‘You are My Son, Today I have begotten You.(Psalm 2:7)

And God’s Plan to send a Holy One to redeem us was enacted, as reiterated by Paul in Acts 13:33:

that God has fulfilled this promise to our children in that He raised up Jesus, as it is also written in the second Psalm, ‘YOU ARE MY SON TODAY I HAVE BEGOTTEN YOU.’

So if we’ve all been sinners since Adam and Eve and He is Holy and cannot dwell with us, that’s it, then, isn’t it? Not quite! We love because He first loved us (1 John 4:19) He loves us SO MUCH! He sent Jesus to us to minister and preach and heal, so that our only, ONLY call to the road to heaven is “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.” (John 6:29b)

It is very simple. Believe. All other verses are spokes stemming that central truth: for example, believing in “the One” means believing in the Messiah. Why was He sent? To seek and save the lost. Why are we lost? We sin. Why is He Messiah? Because He is the ONLY one who is qualified to forgive our sins, being sinless. Why would we confess? Because He came to seek and save us from our sins, therefore it makes sense that we would acknowledge those sins through our stated belief in Him.

Many people believe in a god without believing they themselves are sinners. Worse, they leave Jesus out of the equation completely.

Because God is HOLY, and we sin therefore we are not holy, man must “reform your ways and your actions and obey the LORD your God. Then the LORD will relent and not bring the disaster he has pronounced against you. (Jeremiah 26:13)”

Believe, and turn from your sin. Repent and be dwelling in perfect love for all eternity! Love, love, love, we love because HE FIRST LOVED US! He is wonderful and a holy God like no other. “In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple,” that is how holy He is. Yet for all His holiness, “Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:14-16) He is waiting there for you with open arms.

Posted in gonorrhea, jesus, robert a. j. gagnon, sexual sin

Sexual sins are worse. Here’s why

By Elizabeth Prata

Sexually transmitted diseases at their basic root are a judgment from God in the way that all disease is a function of the decay the people who dwell on the earth experience as a general consequence of sin from the Fall.

Disease is a fact of the wrath of God He is providentially using in this age. Judgment aside, sexual diseases ARE a consequence of wanton sexual activity outside the biblical confines of marriage.

There is a reason God set it up so that one man and one woman enjoy conjugal relations for a lifetime. Abandoning that opens a person up to sin, emotional decay, and physical disease. Remaining in a committed marriage with only one partner, or celibate if single, immeasurably decreases your chances of contracting such a disease.

In addition, Romans 1:18-32 describes God’s wrath against sexual sin and worse perversion.

So how does one avoid God’s displeasure in sexual sin, particularly when the culture is so immoral? Even insurance advertisements use adultery and lasciviousness to sell product! Well, the Bible says,

Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. (1 Corinthians 6:18).”

Barnes Notes explains,

Flee fornication – A solemn command of God – as explicit as any that thundered from Mount Sinai. None can disregard it with impunity – none can violate it without being exposed to the awful vengeance of the Almighty. There is force and emphasis in the word “flee” φεύγατε pheugate. Man should escape from it; he should not stay to reason about it; to debate the matter; or even to contend with his propensities, and to try the strength of his virtue. There are some sins which a man can resist; some about which he can reason without danger of pollution. But this is a sin where a man is safe only when he flies.

Remember Joseph. He is our example here.

But one day, when he went into the house to do his work and none of the men of the house was there in the house, she caught him by his garment, saying, “Lie with me.” But he left his garment in her hand and fled and got out of the house. (Genesis 39:11-12)

His faithfulness is such that He takes ALL sinners, no matter who confesses and repents. No matter what the sin. He is loving, just, merciful and kind. However, though He is those things, at the apocalypse He will unleash His wrath and anger, and render unto the unbelieving and sinning world the due consequences of their actions.

In case you missed it above, sexual sin, any sexual sin, (pre-marital sex, AKA fornication, homosexual sex, adultery, pornography, pedophilia, lust, and all other perversions) is worse than other sins because…here it is in 1 Corinthians 6:18 again.

And a word of caution to us all before the Second Coming takes place: FLEE from sexual sin, and that includes thoughts as well as actions. “Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.” (Hebrews 13:4)

Jesus is GREAT and faithful to help us. You do not have to be a slave to any sexual sin.  “He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit.” (Titus 3:5)



Further Reading

Is homosexuality worse than other sins?
For this reason, Christians are right to see homosexuality as an especially debase sin that displeases God. It is contrary to His good plan for marriage, and cannot reflect the purpose for which marriage exists—to represent Christ’s relationship to the church (Eph 5:31)

Is Homosexual Practice really No Worse than Any Other Sin?
“Christ’s universal coverage of sin through his death on the cross does not mean that all sins are equal in all respects but only that all sins are equal in one respect: They are all covered.”

Posted in apologetics, biblical resources, contend for the faith, homosexuality, todd friel, voddie baucham

Resources about the sin of homosexuality for believers, parents, and gay folks wanting to emerge from their sin

By Elizabeth Prata

It’s ‘pride in one’s homosexual sin’ month. Mother gets a day but sodomy gets a month. Hm. That’s normal in a world where evil is called good and good is called evil, light is dark and dark is light, bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter, says Isaiah 5:20.

People have questions on how to help those on bondage to it, or how to help parents struggling to come to grips with their child’s sin of homosexuality, or how to respond in apologetics to those Christians waving a rainbow flag in affirmation of the decision, or many other issues. As I saw good and trustworthy resources come across my laptop, I saved them and systematized them into groupings. I hope any of this may help as you witness to the truth regarding this particular sin.

1: Help for those emerging from homosexuality

1. Rosaria Butterfield is probably the number 1 exhibit of the post-gay lifestyle of a former feminist and lesbian. She seems like the real deal, an sinful lesbian who is now a Christian. As an adult in 1999, a tenured professor at a liberal university teaching post modernism, feminism, and actively promoting and involved in the lesbian lifestyle, Rosaria is now a married woman to a pastor and mother to children, most important of all, a liberated Christian, freed from her bondage of sins, including homosexuality.

Her book: “The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert: An English Professor’s Journey into the Christian Faith

Article: “My Train-Wreck Conversion

New book: “Openness Unhindered: Further Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert on Sexual Identity and Union with Christ

In the new book she addresses these issues:

  • Conversion: the Spark of a New Identity
  • Identity: the Flame of Our Union in Christ
  • Repentance: the Threshold to God and the Answer to Shame, Temptation, and Sin
  • Sexual Orientation: Freud’s 19th Century Category Mistake
  • Self-Representation: What Does It Mean to Be “gay”?
  • Conflict: When Sisters Disagree
  • Community: Representing Christ to the World

There are additional resources at her website.

2. This article at Piper’s Desiring God website outlines four tactics for the ex-lesbian, or anyone struggling with a besetting sin, to live their life under God in an ever-increasing sanctification.
The Dead End of Sexual Sin

3. Setting Captives Free
I am not familiar with this website/program until someone I trust on Facebook posted about it. I looked it up and apparently they have been counseling for 15 years. I found no negative reviews to speak of, no scandal, and nothing of ill-repute.

They focus on helping people with online and telephone mentoring through structured 30 and 60 day classes, for a fee. Not all classes are for fee, some are free. It is a non-denominational, Biblically based set of courses. They help people who are struggling with–


They offer a couples class in purity.
They offer a class for spouses whose spouse is struggling with sexual addiction.

Recently they have added two other classes, Self-injury and gluttony. In addition, they offer general devotionals and Bible studies. On the website also, there are many resources, some for pay and many for free.

2: Help Understanding what the Bible says about homosexuality

These resources from Pastor-Teacher John MacArthur and Voddie Baucham cover a range of issues related to homosexuality. This is just a sampling. There are additional resources available at on the topic.

Q&A, it’s available in written, audio, or video form.
Answering the Key Questions about Homosexuality
“2004: I think the topic touches all of us in one way or another because it intersects with all of society’s most basic institutions…home, marriage, government, and of course, religion and our faith. And so the questions that I have for you today are going to explore all of those areas. This debate over homosexuality is an emotional one and it hasn’t diminished over time, only the opposite.”

Sermon, available in written, audio, or video form.
Thinking Biblically about Homosexuality
“Well, tonight I want to talk to you on the subject of what God thinks of homosexuals. It is not a particularly enjoyable subject to discuss, nor would any sin be enjoyable to discuss, for that matter. But it has become pertinent and essential and necessary for us to get a biblical view of this rapidly increasing and normalizing effort to accept homosexuality in our culture. We need to understand what the Word of God has to say.”

Homosexuality, Cultural Decay, and the Only Hope
“But be encouraged, because even in the face of the cultural slide, there still is hope—a hope tied to believers like you, the Body of Christ. John MacArthur recently sat down to talk about “Homosexuality and Today’s Moral Slide.” It’s an hour of Bible-based discussion on same-sex marriage, transgender issues, and other evidences of profound cultural decay—and how you and believers like you need to respond to what’s going on now, and to what’s to come if the Lord tarries.”

Sermon, available in written, audio, or video form.
What the Bible teaches about Homosexuality
“Tonight we’re going to return, at least to begin with, to Romans chapter 1 for our study. We really finished last week looking specifically at the text of Romans 1. But there was much interest and reaction as we discussed the issue of homosexuality as it is mentioned by the apostle Paul in this text. I really feel that God used our study of Romans 1 in a very unique way. During the time we were in that chapter many people gave their lives to Christ. I think many of us have a greater understanding of why God is angry with men who reject His revelation, sink into rationalization, religion, and ultimately reprobation, as we saw in our last study. But we noted last time that in the process of Paul’s defining the sinfulness of man and the utter fallenness of man, he gives an illustration of the depth of man’s sin by pointing out what is the worst earthly expression of man’s fallenness, and that is homosexuality.”

In this 4-minute video clip, Pastor Voddie Baucham biblically refutes the comment “Jesus never said anything about homosexuality” and in so doing, teaches Christians how to think about the comment and what to say in response.

3: Help for parents, families

Pastor Dan Phillips, Team Pyro(maniacs) member shares a letter on Team Pyro that he shared with his congregation.
Pastoral Letter on “Pride Month” — Talking to Your Children

In this essay, Kevin DeYoung poses 40 thoughtful questions to the Christians celebrating gay marriage. These can be used in a counseling situation, or if meeting face to face in counseling, via email… whatever. The questions get the Christian to consider their position using the Bible as a mirror.
40 Questions for Christians now Waving Rainbow Flags

In this pair of essays, in one a supposedly Christian father was shockingly heartless in response to his son’s coming out. It is Exhibit A in what NOT to do.
Father disowns his gay son in shockingly heartless letter
“5 years ago, I was disowned via letter when I came out to my father,” writes Redditor RegBarc.”

David Murray read the heartless dad’s letter and mused upon the issue. What letter would he write if his son came out as gay?
What would you write to your gay son?
“As I find it hard to believe that a true Christian would ever write such a letter, I’ve drafted a letter that I hope a Christian father would write (although I’m sure we all hope we’ll never have to write it).”

How to respond to a homosexual child
“The challenge of responding to homosexuality used to be “out there.” Now it’s in our denominations, our churches, and for some, in the home. Many Christian parents are beginning to wonder, “How should I respond if my child claims to be a homosexual?” For some parents, that question is no longer theoretical. How should believing parents respond to their homosexual children? How do they deal biblically with their children’s sexual sins—particularly if the children claim to know Christ?”

Posted in theology

But…there are gay penguins, right?

By Elizabeth Prata

It’s ‘pride in one’s homosexual sin’ month. Mother gets a day but sodomy gets a month. Hm. That’s normal in a world where evil is called good and good is called evil, light is dark and dark is light, bitter is sweet and sweet is bitter, says Isaiah 5:20.

Sometimes when mentioning that homosexuality is a sin that needs repenting for, else the person practicing it will not inherit heaven, (1 Corinthians 6:9), the person defending it as natural appeals to nature. They say, ‘What about the gay penguins? Hmm? Hmmm?’

Tufts University asked that very question, recounting the unusual same-sex activity in a variety of species of penguins. Deutsche Welle (DW) of Germany also has an article stating “10 Animal Species that show How Being Gay is Natural.” There are many articles like this.

There are only two problems with appealing to nature when defending homosexuality: they suppress the truth that God trumps nature, and most importantly, nature (or the natural world) is fallen. It is under the curse of the fallen nature of things, the same as the rest of us. Any aberrant behavior AKA sin, is due to that fall.

In fact, the creation groans for release from its curse:

For the anxious longing of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. (Romans 8:19-22).

You weren’t born gay. Homosexuality is not a natural state. Jesus can release you from this sin.

Appealing to nature as a defense of unnatural behavior fails, because the natural world is unnatural at this point. To be sure, seasons progress along their given lines, leaves change, tides sweep in and out, people are eating and drinking and marrying and living lives. A vast majority of the world looks normal. And it did before the Flood, too (Matthew 24:38). But we stagger under the fall of Man, knowing the very ground is cursed and everything that springs from it has the potential to be abnormal. Everything and everyone.

Then Yahweh saw that the evil of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. (Genesis 6:5).

All creation groans. All is under pain and disorder. All things share that curse in common misery. And what comes from disorder is more disorder, such as homosexuality.

The wages of all sin is death. This includes homosexuality, lesbianism, bestiality, other sexual immorality like fornication outside of marriage, lust, pornography, and adultery. Homosexuals who practice their sin will not go to heaven when they die, but are headed for hell to endure eternal punishment for their sin. Just like the rest of the unrepentant sinners.

But if you want to escape this reality, this sure ending, then you have the hope of the Gospel. Repent (turn away; repudiate) your sin of homosexuality and appeal to the Lord & Savior who died on the tree for this sin, enduring God’s wrath for it, so you will not endure the wrath for it. You will be washed clean, given pure robes to wear in this earthly life, and you will go to meet your Savior in blissful heaven when you die. But you must repent of it first.

If you do not want to repent of your homosexuality, you have the Law facing you. God will be your Judge. He will open the books, examine your life, bang that gavel, declare you unfit for heaven and sentence you to hell, according to His law. The wages of sin is death, this means death in hell. The punishment is eternal because you will have sinned against an infinite God.

Homosexuality in penguins is aberrant, and it’s definitely aberrant in humans. Repent, a Savior is waiting to take you out of that hellish life of diminishing returns and expand it in joy and freedom from that sin.

Posted in theology

Listen, Lord – A Prayer

by James Weldon Johnson

James Weldon Johnson (June 17, 1871 – June 26, 1938) was an American author, politician, diplomat, critic, journalist, poet, anthologist, educator, lawyer, songwriter, and early civil rights activist. Johnson is remembered best for his leadership within the NAACP, as well as for his writing, which includes novels, poems, and collections of folklore. He was also one of the first African-American professors at New York University. Later in life he was a professor of creative literature and writing at Fisk University. (Source)

I (Elizabeth Prata) am reading the poetry book called “God’s Trombones: God’s Trombones: Seven Negro Sermons in Verse”, inspirational sermons of the old Negro preachers set down as poetry in the collection named above. This poem moved me:

Listen, Lord: A Prayer

O Lord, we come this morning
Knee-bowed and body-bent
Before Thy throne of grace.
O Lord–this morning–
Bow our hearts beneath our knees,
And our knees in some lonesome valley.
We come this morning–
Like empty pitchers to a full fountain,
With no merits of our own.
O Lord–open up a window of heaven,
And lean out far over the battlements of glory,
And listen this morning.

Lord, have mercy on proud and dying sinners–
Sinners hanging over the mouth of hell,
Who seem to love their distance well.
Lord–ride by this morning–
Mount Your milk-white horse,
And ride-a this morning–
And in Your ride, ride by old hell,
Ride by the dingy gates of hell,
And stop poor sinners in their headlong plunge.

And now, O Lord, this man of God,
Who breaks the bread of life this morning–
Shadow him in the hollow of Thy hand,
And keep him out of the gunshot of the devil.
Take him, Lord–this morning–
Wash him with hyssop inside and out,
Hang him up and drain him dry of sin.
Pin his ear to the wisdom-post,
And make his words sledge hammers of truth–
Beating on the iron heart of sin.
Lord God, this morning–
Put his eye to the telescope of eternity,
And let him look upon the paper walls of time.
Lord, turpentine his imagination,
Put perpetual motion in his arms,
Fill him full of the dynamite of Thy power,
Anoint him all over with the oil of Thy salvation,
And set his tongue on fire.

And now, O Lord–
When I’ve done drunk my last cup of sorrow–
When I’ve been called everything but a child of God–
When I’m done traveling up the rough side of the mountain–
O–Mary’s Baby–
When I start down the steep and slippery steps of death–
When this old world begins to rock beneath my feet–
Lower me to my dusty grave in peace
To wait for that great gittin’-up morning–Amen.

James Weldon Johnson

Posted in theology

They fell down

By Elizabeth Prata

I know it’s currently an atmosphere were we say Jesus is my friend…he met me in the garden and promised me… he whispered sweet nothings… he embraces me like a boyfriend…(ew), and more along that vein. In American (female) evangelicalism the view of Jesus is more toward the friendly nice boyfriend Jesus, or the (male) Jesus is ‘ma dude’ kind of view.

But He’s not. He’s not.

It’s also currently in vogue to say you’ve seen a vision of Jesus. It’s almost common these days. People are apparently spotting Jesus all over the place.

In the sermon The Sufficiency of Christ, John MacArthur related an anecdote:

“A man said to me, “Sometimes when I’m shaving, Jesus comes in the bathroom and puts His arm around me in the morning and talks to me.” I said, “You mean the real Jesus?” He said, “Yes.” I said, “And He puts His arm around you and you see Him?” He said, “Yes.” And I just had one question: “Do you keep shaving, or do you fall on your face in the ground in terror because you’re in the presence of a holy God? If you keep shaving, it wasn’t Jesus.”

Jesus is our friend, brother, comforter, intercessor, all that is true. It’s also true he is high, lifted up, the sustainer of the universe, powerful, omniscient, omnipresent, and HOLY.

That’s the part people forget Jesus is holy. He is God Himself. If we encounter Jesus today (and those visions and dreams and accounts are false) we do not casually stroll around a garden…we do not keep shaving…we do not ask Him for the earthly things we want in our lustful hearts. We FALL DOWN. We CONFESS SIN.

Those are consistently the two reactions people in the Bible exhibited when encountering the real Jesus.

Isaiah was given a vision of Jesus being worshiped in the throne room, and he immediately confessed his sin, saying ‘I am undone/ruined’. The word ruined means “cause to cease, cut off, destroy, perish”. In other words, one glimpse of Jesus and Isaiah was terrified as if dead. (Isaiah 6:5).

Manoah and his wife, when they realized it was ‘the angel of Yahweh’ rising upon the fire of the altar, they fell down on their faces. (Judges 13:20) and Manoah feared for his life, because he had seen the LORD.

When Job came to the same realization of just how holy and powerful God is he put his hand over his own mouth (Job 40:4) then repented in dust and ashes. (Job 42:5-6).

Hagar marveled that she was even still alive after her encounter with ‘the angel of Yahweh’. (Genesis 16:13).

Moses at the Burning Bush was afraid to look at God. (Exodus 3:6). When Moses came down fromt he mountain and his face reflected the glory of God, the people were terrified. Even second-hand glory was enough to frighten them through and through!

When Simon Peter saw the miracle of the boat filling with fish, he fell at Jesus’ knees. “Go away from me, Lord,” he said, “for I am a sinful man.” (Luke 5:8).

Apostle John was the beloved disciple. He had leaned on Jesus breast at the Last Supper. He was with Jesus for three years, as friend, fellow traveler in his troupe. YET when Jesus appeared to John on Patmos as he is, glorified and holy, John fell down as if dead. (Revelation 1:17).

The immediate reaction consistent among all who had an encounter with the true Jesus is worship, holy fear, and a thorough realization of their own corrupt sinfulness. We don’t casually walk around, keep shaving, ask for earthly things as if He’s Santa incarnate. WE.FALL.DOWN.

Keep remembering who Jesus actually is. Look at Him through the lens of scripture, and not the lens of the culture. Keep your eyes looking up, and not out.

EPrata photo

“I kept looking in the night visions, And behold, with the clouds of heaven One like a Son of Man was coming, And He came up to the Ancient of Days And came near before Him. And to Him was given dominion, Glory, and a kingdom, That all the peoples, nations, and men of every tongue Might serve Him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion Which will not be taken away; And His kingdom is one Which will not be destroyed.” (Daniel 7:13-14).

and in the middle of the lampstands I saw one like a son of man, clothed in a robe reaching to the feet, and girded across His chest with a golden sash. And His head and His hair were white like white wool, like snow; and His eyes were like a flame of fire. His feet were like burnished bronze, when it has been made to glow in a furnace, and His voice was like the sound of many waters, and having in His right hand seven stars, and a sharp two-edged sword which comes out of His mouth, and His face was like the sun shining in its power. (Revelation 1:13-16).

Worship the Lord your GOD. He is glorified, striding among the lampstands, sustaining the worlds by the power of His voice. THIS Jesus is worthy to be worshiped. He is Alpha and Omega, all-sufficient. He is Jesus, Lord of Lords and King of Kings. And aren’t we blessed to have been forgiven and adopted by this powerful God, who will come in wrath for those who have not repented.

For all the gods of the nations are idols, but it is the LORD who made the heavens. (1 Chronicles 16:26)

Posted in theology

RightNow Media is so wrong

By Elizabeth Prata

RightNow Media is “A streaming library of more than 20,000 Bible study videos for leaders to share with their people.” The organization says the streaming, virtual app will “help you equip and disciple your people every day of the week.” They also offer streaming libraries to various ages in schools, from elementary to High School. And they also have programs and platforms for work environments that include training programs on leadership and teamwork, and so on. RightNow has “more than 25,000 Christian Bible study videos for church leaders to share with their people and small groups. The app and video content supports 9 languages and serves more than 25,000 churches around the world.”

Reviewers and users call RightNow Media “essentially the Netflix of Christian media”, “a useful tool”, “wonderful, Bible-based content from Christian leaders throughout the world” and more.

This would be an acceptable thing, if the app wasn’t stuffed with so many false teachers.

In addition, the media outlet says that “Everything we do at RightNow Media is rooted in Jesus’s promise that God will use his people to change the world.”

The modern, progressive church likes that mantra- ‘change the world.’ We are not called to change the world but to call people to repentance and belief in the Gospel, and to make disciples. The world is going to end in fire and be made new. Meanwhile, we seek souls to share the Gospel with before GOD changes the world.

I’m wary of virtual church anything, first and foremost. I understand the temptation to rely on streaming networks for small groups in discipleship, but it’s best to have live leaders using the Bible, present and engaged with you.

I watched carefully when RightNow Media initially came along. I was dismayed when it was soon flooded with teachers who teach either falsely or have serious issues with their theology with great parts at variance with the New Testament.

Here is a sampling of some of the teachers at RightNow Media I not only don’t recommend, but urge you to mark and avoid: Rick Warren, Patrick Lencioni, Chris Lowney (Lencioni and Lowney are both practicing Catholics), Ann Voskamp, Matt Chandler, Stormie Omartian, Beth Moore, Lisa Harper, Max Lucado, Jen Wilkin, Kay Warren, Louie Giglio, Kyle Idleman, Andy Stanley, John Maxwell. Mystic Dallas Willard’s series “Hearing God” is on there.

Yes there was Alistair Begg and RC SProul and Stephen Nichols, solid men, and probably a few other more solid teachers I didn’t see among the vast listings that I’d recommend, but that’s all. A few drops in the face of a tsunami of teachers and ministries I would not recommend is not a good balance. And yes, there appears to be a feature for church administrators to ‘hide’ media they do not wish their flock to be exposed to. But there are so many, the Admin would be spending all his time vetting and hiding rather than using.

Here is a more explicit look at a few of the teachers at RightNow I would not recommend, and why:

Jennie Allen: She founded “If:Gathering” a parachurch organization which is separate from any church oversight, and in addition to online teachings and an annual conference, encourages female real life fellowshipping around some studies distinct from their own churches, which actually ends up competing with local churches. The online gatherings and the annual conference is hosted by many false teachers. Jennie founded IF:Gathering when in her own words, “a voice from the sky” told her to “gather and equip women for this generation”. However, the gathering and equipping was a charge given by the Apostles to local churches, not free-wheeling women responding to a voice from the sky.

Francis Chan: Preached at International House of Prayer (IHOP), a hotbed of charismaticism and heresy, stating he “loves Mike Bickle” who founded IHOP and is a rank heretic. Partners with Catholics, calls them brothers.

Francis Chan receives backlash after comments on the Catholic Eucharist:

Anne Voskamp is a mystical panentheist who uses sensual language to describe her relationship with Christ. Bob DeWaay is a super good writer and discerner who wrote about the troubling beliefs of Voskamp here:

Andy Stanley preached in a Christmas message (!) that “Christianity doesn’t hinge on the truth or even the stories of Jesus (!?Stories?) it really hinges on the resurrection of Jesus.” He downplays the virgin birth, 90-second explanation here, from Pastor Gabe Hughes, who also runs the Ministry When We Understand the Text (WWUTT).

Andy Stanley also famously preached that the church includes unbelievers, that one can and should “unhitch” from the Old Testament, and more. A roundup of his heretical views is here: “Polite Leader” Alan Hunter who included a few famous folks in his video rebuttal of Andy Stanley’s errant views and included more links to critiques of his heresies.

JD Greear: A known plagiarist (he stole/borrowed/took sermons from Tim Keller and gave his own sermons to SBC President Ed Litton), and buys his sermons from Docent, an organization that prepares sermon materials for a wide range of Evangelical pastors regardless of doctrinal convictions. He also preached that God only whispers about homosexuality…

Mark Batterson: known for his ‘Circle Maker’ books (a practice with no biblical precedent but lots of witchcraft precedent) is reviewed here, negatively, by respected book reviewer and pastor, Tim Challies.

John Eldredge: known for his ‘Wild at Heart books’, Tim Challies said he’d intended to review it but found it “was so full of error and absolutely ridiculous nonsense that I just didn’t have the heart to document it all. Honestly, I was frustrated and discouraged to see that a book like Wild at Heart could make it to the top of the Christian best-seller’s lists.” Nevertheless, Gary Gilley of Southern View Chapel and ministry Think on These Things, did write a respected review, here-

Derwin Gray of Transformation Church regularly has women preach the Sunday Service, including Beth Moore.

Tim Keller: had a woman teach a co-ed course on Catholic practices in a class called Way of the Monk; he has embraced the “social justice” movement, talked about the ‘corporate guilt’ of white America as being ‘systemically racist’. When asked if there was one God and only one way TO that God, Keller did not answer forthrightly, saying ‘IF Jesus is who he says he is…” and it got worse from there, and pressed again by the interviewer, Keller said he is on a “need to know basis”. See the clip here-

I do not know every teacher on Right Now Media but enough of them are OBVIOUSLY troubling to the max, that no person – especially one new to the faith or undiscerning – should be exposed to them.

I’d offer a streaming alternative for individuals wanting some solid teaching. Sproul’s Ligonier Ministry, offers courses long and short, some free and others for low cost. RefNet, an outreach of Ligonier of streaming media includes hymns, devotionals, and teachings. It’s free. The website Exposit the Word has different teachers teaching every book of the Bible and as far as I know they are solid, and that website is free. Justin Peters Ministries has a free daily reading through the entire Bible, plus many other discernment videos for your edification. is a new Streaming Service from AiG (Answers in Genesis). Subscribers get exclusive livestreams of conferences, science programs for kids and the family, creationist documentary programs, and much more. There is a kids’ music stream too. Its cost is $4.99/month or $39.99/year.

American Gospel TV is another media outlet offering more solid content.

I’m sorry so many churches are using RightNow media. I do not recommend the streaming outlet RightNow Media for churches or for individuals. Though there may be a few teachers on there that are solid, there is too much temptation for the false to creep in, and that is not a good thing.