The times; they are getting hard. Even many church organizations that call themselves "Fundamental, Independent, Separated Baptist" churches are falling away (2 Thess 2:3) from the faith once delivered to the saints(Jude 1:3.)
Used to be that these churches were unscriptural in only a FEW things like "tithing" and "ONE MAN pastoral hierarchy," but read on.
Mind you now; not ALL IBC's fit this category, but if the following shoe fits YOUR church, GET OUT OF IT.
If it doesn't fit your church, THANK GOD FOR IT.
IN THE WEB OF COMPROMISE
Baptist churches caught in the Willow Creek Association web of Compromise
.(From the January 1998 issue of The Plains Baptist Challenger http://www.llano.net/baptist/index.html)
In this article we are going to show you the shocking compromise of many Baptist churches. You will be surprised to find out that some who claim to be Independent and Fundamental Baptists are members of a heretical and dangerous organization known as the Willow Creek Association. We are going to give you the names of some of these churches, along with the heretics they are associated with.
Bill Hybels is one of the most dangerous religious leaders in America. Through his ministry at Willow Creek Community Church, South Barrington, Illinois, and the Willow Creek Association, he is leading many Baptists into the web of compromise. Churches are being destroyed, while at the same time they are growing in membership. If this seems to be a contradiction, just remember that when a church departs from the faith it is destroyed, no matter how many members they may continue to have.
Every Sunday morning about 15,000 people gather in the Willow Creek Community Church (WCCC). This is not your regular church service. There is no organ, piano, hymnbooks. They do not join in singing the grand old hymns of the Christian faith. Neither is there a biblical sermon preached. This is their so-called Seeker Service, which is produced in order to get lost people to enjoy church without guilt or shame. There are no sermons against sin, nor is there a call for repentance. Instead of this, there is plenty of rock music from a rock band. Instead of a biblical sermon they feature dramas and multi-media. Of course, the lost man likes to be entertained, and he gets plenty of that at WCCC.
The Man Who Inspired Hybels
Bill Hybels proudly gives Dr. Gilbert Bilezikian the credit for inspiring him to build the Willow Creek ministry. This French born professor did his undergraduate work at the University of Paris. Then he enrolled at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts, where he received a Master of Divinity degree.
While Gordon-Conwell is named after two great men, it is a hotbed of new-evangelicalism and modernism. Gordon and Conwell would flip over in their graves, if they knew how their names were being used.
After pastoring for five years in Albany, New York, Bilezikian moved on to teach in Wheaton College. (This is another hot bed of new-evangelicalism, and a synonym for compromise.) After accepting the presidency of a Christian college in Beirut, Lebanon, he returned to the United States in 1971. He soon joined the staff of Trinity College in Deerfield, Illinois (another school of compromise). It was there that he indoctrinated Bill Hybels into this new kind of ministry.
Robert Schuller Also Inspired Hybels
No doubt Robert Schuller, pastor of the Crystal Cathedral, Garden Grove, California, has had a tremendous influence on Hybels. Schuller with his perpetual grin, can be seen on many television stations nationwide. He believes that self-esteem is the new reformation, and wrote a book to prove it. On page 15 of his book he declares "Self-Esteem" and "Self-Love" are the same thing. His theology and his message are a thousand miles from being biblical. The gospel he preaches would not save a fly, much less a sinner.
We shall give some quotes from "Rediscovering Church," by Lynne and Bill Hybels which clearly show the relationship between Hybels and Schuller. "In April he (Hybels) read Robert Schuller's book Your Church Has Real Possibilities, which affirmed Bill's belief that one could reach unchurched people through the local church." (P. 51) "During the latter years of Son City and the early years of Willow Creek, Bill (Hybels) traveled periodically as a consultant to youth groups. One group with whom he had an ongoing relationship was the high school Youth group at Garden Grove Community Church in Garden Grove, California (now the Crystal Cathedral)." (P. 68) This is Robert Schuller's Church.
"DIVINE ENCOUNTER. In the fall of 1976, Bill (Hybels) took another trip to Garden Grovethis time to take the staff, module directors, and other lay leaders of Willow Creek to a pastors conference there. During the conference, our entire entourage somehow ended up in Robert Schuller's office which at that time was in the upper floors of the Tower of Prayer. Bill told Dr. Schuller about our efforts to establish a church for the unchurched and about our seeker services and about our tentative plans to buy land for a future building. Bill asked Dr. Schuller if he could give us any advice regarding our next step.
"Dr. Schuller answered, `If you give God a thimble, perhaps He will choose to fill it. If you give God a five-gallon bucket, perhaps He will choose to fill that. If you give him a fifty-gallon drum, perhaps He will choose to do something extraordinary and fill even that. If God chooses to do a miracle, you'd better be ready for it. Don't buy a thimbleful of land. Buy a fifty-gallon drum.'" (P. 69)
They go on to tell us that Schuller was highly esteemed by them. "Had we been `puffed up' with the affirmation offered us by a man so highly esteemedthe only credible adult who had given us any encouragement?
"As I look back through the years I can't help but think that what happened that day was exactly what we thought it was at the time: a divinely staged encounter. We returned home changed." (P. 69)
Schuller Raises Funds For Hybels
"On a Saturday night in June 1977, Robert Schuller graciously came and spoke at our fund- raising banquet in the ballroom of the Sheraton Hotel in Des Plaines, Illinois...Dr. Schuller affirmed the value and potential of the dream to the 1,000 people who attended." (P. 70)
Hybels, Schuller Relationship Continues
Down through the years the relationship between Hybels and Schuller has continued. They have spoken in each others churches on a number of occasions. A few months ago, we published an article from the Calvary Contender, which stated that Bill Hybels, Rick Warren, and John Maxwell had spoken at a conference at Robert Schuller's Church, and that homosexuals were there for training. Bill Mosley, a veteran preacher who is a member of Tabernacle Baptist Church in Lubbock, wrote Hybels asking about this. He received the following reply.
Reply From Willow Creek Association
Regarding your recent correspondence:
Bill Hybels never attended or spoke at any conference for gay and lesbian pastors. In fact, Bill, Rick Warren, and John Maxwell have never done a conference together anywhere in the world, let alone the Crystal Cathedral.
This is an ugly rumor and I pray that you'll pass on the accurate information to other parties that might inquire. Thank you for checking with us first.
Willow Creek Association
Brother Mosley gave me a copy of the above letter from Paul Braoudakis. Then he wrote to the editor of the Calvary Contender who stood by his report. He had received his information from a pro-homosexual paper which clearly stated that over 100 people from the Metropolitan Community Church went to this Institute at Schuller's Church for training. It is possible that Hybels did not know that the homosexuals were there, since they would have been a small part of those in attendance. I am sure that Schuller would have known since they registered from the Metropolitan Church.
Mr. Paul Braoudakis of Willow Creek Association in the above letter said, "In fact, Bill (Hybels), Rick Warren, and John Maxwell have never done a conference together anywhere in the world, let alone the Crystal Cathedral." This gentleman, either lied or said this through ignorance.
When I read this, I went to the public library and looked at copies of Christianity Today on microfilm. I found the ad that I was looking for in the September 16, 1996 issue. That issue of CT contained a full page ad for "The Robert H. Schuller Institute for Successful Church Leadership." This meeting was to take place on January 27-30, 1997, and the pictures of the speakers were printed in the ad. The pictures and names found in the top row include, Robert H. Schuller, Bill Hybels, Rick Warren, and John Maxwell, along with others. These the same people of which Paul Braoudakis, Communications Director for Willow Creek Association said, "Bill Hybels never attended or spoke at any conference for gay and lesbian pastors. In fact, Bill, Rick Warren, and John Maxwell have never done a conference together anywhere in the world, let alone the Crystal Cathedral."
This shows you just how far these people will go to cover up their sin of compromise.
What Kind Of Churches Are In The Willow Creek Association?
There are more than 2,200 churches in the WCA world wide. They are listed on the World Wide Web page for the WCA. They claim that 70 denominations and 15 countries are represented in the WCA. Here is a list of some of the denominations represented and the percentage that they make up in the WCA.
3% Evangelical Free
3% Assembly of God
2% Seventh-day Adventist
2% Christian Missionary Alliance
14% Other (60+ denominations)
Why would any Baptist church, much less a fundamental independent Baptist Church want to be a member of an association that contains such unscriptural member churches? Each church pays $249.00 per year to be a member.
I have before me an application form for churches to fill out if they want to join the WCA. On the line for the Senior Pastor's title which is to be circled, it says, "Senior Pastor: (Circle) DR. REV. MR. MRS. MISS MS."
There you have it proclaimed that the Senior Pastor can be a "Mrs. Miss or MS." Then there is a affirmation to be signed, which reads as follows, "Affirmation: Please enclose your church's statement of faith which clearly affirms your commitment to an evangelical Christian faith." Please tell E. L. Bynum how Seventh-day Adventists (cult), and many of these liberal churches can be declared to be evangelical. Whoever reads these applications must wear dark rose colored glasses and be very, very broad minded.
Shocking Members Of WCA In Missouri
The High Street Baptist Church, Springfield, MO, is a member of Hybels apostate WCA. This has been one of the most prominent churches in the Baptist Bible Fellowship International. Curiously on Hybels' Willownet web page High Street is listed as being a member of the Southern Baptist Convention. I wanted to know whether this was true or not, so I called the Church. A polite lady answered the phone, and I asked her if High Street was in the SBC. She said, "no," but when I told her it was listed as SBC on the Willownet, she said she would go and see whether they were in the SBC. Moments later she returned and said they were not in the SBC, but that they were Independent and Fundamental. This Church was the place where the Baptist Bible College met in 1950, until they got their own buildings built. It is disturbing to find a Church with a long history of being fundamentalist, now being in the Willow Creek Association (WCA).
Other churches and organizations in Springfield, MO that are in the WCA are: Christian Community Church, Interdenominational; Gateway Christian Church, Disciples of Christ; India Leadership Institute, Assemblies of God; Baptist Student Union, Southern Baptist Convention.
I wonder if High Street Baptist Church ever gets together with the other members of the Association they belong to? If they do, they get to fellowship with Interdenominationlists, Disciples of Christ (Campbellites with pianos), Assembly of God, and Southern Baptist. Why not? They are already in the same Association together.
Shocking Members Of WCA In Texas
Southwest Baptist Church, in Amarillo, TX is a member of WCA, and they are listed as Independent Baptist on the Willownet. (Makes me want to stop calling myself an Independent Baptist). This Church is listed as being a member of the Baptist Bible Fellowship. Other churches in Amarillo that are members of WCA are: Saint Stephen Church, United Methodist; Pinnacle Community Church, Interdenominational. How any United Methodist church could be considered to be "evangelical," is a mystery to me. The United Methodist Church is one of the greatest apostate organizations on the top side (or bottom side) of the earth. The good people at Southwest Baptist Church must rejoice knowing that they are in the same Association with Saint Stephen Church, United Methodist.
Shocking Members of WCA In Florida
New Testament Baptist Church, Miami, Florida is a member of WCA, and they are prominent members of the Baptist Bible Fellowship. I believe that this huge Church was started by Al Janney, a man I went to Bible school with for a few months. Other churches in Miami that are in the WCA are as follows: Colusa Community Church, Interdenominational; Jesus Fellowship Church, Interdenominational; and New Community Seventh-day Aventist Church, 7th Day Adventist. If all these WCA members in Miami decide to get together and fellowship, they can't do it on Saturday. The Adventist are going to be busy elsewhere.
First Baptist Church, West Hollywood, Florida
Ardella Baptist Church, Lakeland, Florida
Other BBF Churches In The WCA
First Baptist Church, Redondo Beach California
Liberty Baptist Church, Kansas City, Kansas
Falls Baptist Temple, Munroe Falls, Ohio
Capital Baptist Church, Annandale, VA
Pilgrim Baptist Church, Waukesha, WI
There are a number of other BBF churches that belong to the WCA. There are many others who have adopted the methods of Bill Hybels, but have not joined his WCA. Where are you, Noel Smith, when we need you?
GARBC Churches In The WCA
I will list only a few churches of the General Association of Regular Baptists, who are members of the Hybels' WCA.
Grace Baptist Church, Eureka, CA
Blackhawk Baptist Church, Fort Wayne, Ind.
For many years Dr. Robert T. Ketcham was the influential leader of the GARBC. He fought against modernism and compromise. He has been dead for a number of years, and the GARBC has steadily declined under other leaders. If he knew what was taking place, he would be very distressed. There are other GARBC churches that we shall not list.
Conservative Baptist In The WCA
The following Conservative Baptist Churches are listed in the WCA directory.
Prospect Heights Baptist Church, Rolling Meadows, IL
Grace Baptist Church, Mahomet, IL
Calvary Baptist Church, Muscatine, Iowa
Arcade Baptist Church, Sacramento, CA
First Baptist Church, San Jose, CA
First Baptist Church, Aspen, CO
Ridgefield Baptist Church, Ridgefield, Conn.
The word "Conservative" should be a glorious word, but such churches listed here disgrace the name "Conservative Baptist."
American Baptist Churches In The WCA
The American Baptist Convention is one the greatest apostate denominations in existence today. They are in the National Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches. They are well represented in the WCA. The most notable ABC church in the WCA is the Riverside Church, New York City, NY. This Church was pastored by the notorious Harry Emerson Fosdick, the dean of apostates in his time. Just remember, every church in the WCA is in there along with the Riverside Church. Church of Christ And Others
Numerous churches of the Church of Christ (salvation by water) denomination are in the WCA. This includes the Church of Christ, Glendora, CA. Church of God churches are in it, as well as many, many Southern Baptist Convention churches. The whole Georgia Baptist Convention is in the WCA. Presbyterian, Lutheran, Reformed, and many other false churches are in the WCA.
Independent Baptists In WCA
A number of churches in the WCA are listed as Independent Baptist. These include the Grace Baptist Church, Normal, IL, as well as several others. Since I do not know what brand of Independent Baptist they are, we shall just call them the Compromising Independent Baptists. It is interesting that the Sonrise Community Baptist Church, Spring Valley, CA, is listed as Independent Evangelical. The First Baptist Church, Modesto, CA, is listed as Interde nominational. They should just drop the name Baptist as well. The following churches are listed as Independent Baptists.
Hopevale Memorial Baptist Church, Saginaw, Mich.
Calvary Baptist Church, Hazel Park, Mich.
There are some Independent Unaffiliated Baptist churches that are using some of the material and methods of Hybels' WCA. These are historic Independent Baptist churches which once stood for the faith. They have chosen Hybels' way of compromise without joining his WCA.
The Impending Disaster Of Spiritual Fornication
Sometimes a sweet pure church going girl meets a young man and falls for him. He is not religious, but is charming and very knowing about what he is doing. He has seduced many other young women in the same way. After a while his charm and appeal works its wiles on the girl. This results in their going to bed together, and she contracts AIDS or some other sexual disease, which will follow her all the rest of her life. Medical doctors say that when she went to bed with him, it is as if she had slept with all his previous sexual partners, and with all of the partners of their partners. She thought she was going to bed with one boy, but it is as if she had slept with dozens of other people as well.
The same thing takes place when pure churches join up with compromising apostate churches in any kind of an organization like Hybels' WCA. Not only are these church corrupted, but they corrupt the other churches in the organizations like the BBF that they belong to.
Churches Commit Fornication
If you doubt that statement, listen to the following Scripture. And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters: With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication. So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication: And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. (Revelation 17:1-5) (Emphasis ours).
Please note that the above passage refers to the Harlot One World Church of the end time. It is made up of the Roman Catholic Church and her apostate Protestant daughters. She is a harlot, and she commits fornication with the kings of the earth. This is spiritual fornication. This Harlot Church is now being formed, as we see Protestant churches hopping in bed with the Catholic Church. Even weak kneed compromising Baptist churches are involved with that.
I do not know how much Bill Hybels is involved with the Roman Catholic Church, or the World Council of Churches. One thing is clear, he is in bed with many churches who are in the World Council of Churches. He is involved with Church of Christ, Church of God, and 7th Day Adventist churches. He is deeply involved with Robert Schuller of the Crystal Cathedral. Baptist churches that are in Hybels' WCA, or who are using his materials and methods, are involved in a form of spiritual fornication. This will spread the disease of compromise, just like AIDS and other sexual diseases are being spread today.
Churches of the BBF, GARB, and Conservative Baptists are in organizations that have churches in the WCA. Your church may not be in the WCA, yet if you are in these organizations, you are involved in this web of compromise. This spiritual fornication is going to spread the disease of compromise to your church. It may be slow, but it will affect your ministry and your church. Why not obey the Scripture? "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. (2 Cor. 6:14-17)
How To Tell When A Church Is Caught In The Hybels Web
A church that is caught in the web may be doing all or part of the following. Such churches may be using dance and drama. They may feature Christian Rock music, and multi-media slide shows. Hybels' Church has no altar, no choir, organ, hymnals or song books. A Chicago sociologist said Hybels preaches a very upbeat message - "a salvationist message, but the idea is not so much saved from the fires of hell. Rather, it's being saved from meaningless and aimlessness in this life. It's more of a soft sell." (Plains Baptist Challenger, January 1996).
Hybels' Willow Creek Community Church bears no denominational affiliation in its name. This is what Lee Strobel the teaching pastor of Hybels' Church says that churches ought to do. "Churches should consider dropping the denominational affiliation from their name in certain instances." He goes on to say, "some denominational churches have started using community church in their titles, which is generally well-received by Harry since it suggests local involvement and community ties." ("Inside The Mind Of Unchurched Harry & Mary," by Lee Strobel, Zondervan Publishing House, page 68).
Churches that are caught in the Hybels web, will likely conduct a Seekers Service on Sunday Morning. It may be called by some other name, but the object is to have enough worldly entertainment to make an unsaved man or woman feel comfortable. WCA churches may from time to time feature comedians in their services.
The Willow Creek Community Church has large crowds and so do many of the churches in the WCA. It may look successful to the religious world, but how does it look to God? Churches that go this route will find Ichabod written over the door. And she named the child Ichabod, saying, The glory is departed from Israel: because the ark of God was taken, and because of her father in law and her husband. (1 Samuel 4:21)
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