NAE departs from its roots – and the Bible…
By Eric Barger
When it was founded in the early 1940’s, the National Association of Evangelicals quickly became the key voice representing Bible-believing Christians who sought to refute and stifle unbiblical theological liberalism throughout the Church. The elements of spiritual liberalism (the doctrinally compromised social brand of religion adhered to in many Mainline churches) had been accepted and endorsed by members of the Federal Council of Churches of Christ (now called The National Council of Churches) and real Bible-believers knew they had to make a stand. The leaders and much of the membership of the FCCC had spent the better part of the previous century systematically abandoning the core beliefs of the faith, turning once-sound groups away from the Scriptures to follow the trappings of social religion instead. Having been affected by the seductive so-called “German Enlightenment,” which sought to intellectualize Christianity by attacking or ignoring the Word of God, it appears that precious few inside the FCCC had a clue as to what was actually taking place. In reality, they had assisted Satan to accomplish a massive undermining of Christ’s Church from the inside as congregations, individuals, and entire denominations fell victim to the apostasy. The resulting counterfeit religion, which rejects the foundational doctrines that had held the Body of Christ together since the first century, was well on the way to gutting every quadrant of Christianity, the effects of which can be seen all around us today.
Though the Methodists, Presbyterians, Anglican/Episcopalians, Lutherans, Disciples of Christ, and many other churches and groups had been the “evangelicals” of their day 80-150 years ago, liberals had gained control of the Bible schools and seminaries where unscrupulous – and unsaved -- individuals had denigrated the Scriptures, mocked the supernatural, and attempted to instill doubt and not faith in all who dared enter their classrooms. The creeds, which the Apostles and countless believers throughout the Church age had given their lives for, were unceremoniously ridiculed. As the Bible was denounced, denial became the norm and heresy replaced truth as liberalism appealed to the flesh and corrupted all who embraced it. Within a relatively short period of time, ideals, science, and human reasoning systematically replaced the Bible and had begun to poison the minds of future ministers, teachers, and countless lay people. All of this took place, but not without a formidable fight.
Scripturally aware and dedicated Christians and congregations who had rejected liberalism’s onslaught rallied together. This is when141 Bible-believers, led by men such as Ralph T. Davis, Will Houghton, Harold Ockenga, and J. Elwin Wright met in St. Louis in 1942, declaring “enough is enough” to the liberal takeover of Christianity. Thus, the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) was born.
For decades the NAE was one of the primary voices of Bible believers, having worldwide influence. But just as the Methodists and others succumbed to theological collapse, there is genuine reason to be concerned about the state of the NAE today. There is now what I have referred to as a “satanic redo” underway to pervert and undermine the Christian faith. I am not intimating that NAE leaders are demonized. Nor am I saying that they are not actually Christians. What I am saying is that they are apparently NOT leading according to the edict of their founders. The various programs, positions, and affiliations being fostered are, to say the least, troubling. Judging from the actions and alliances of the current NAE, those in leadership dubiously seem to have more in common with the FCCC than the 141 brave leaders who founded the NAE in 1942. Just as there had been so many years ago, those who today have been entrusted with the single-minded task of clearly presenting salvation to a lost world seem to have become enamored with the very kinds of social issues that became and still are a spiritual millstone around the necks of those not willing to uphold biblical inerrancy.
Note from Eric: Some of issues I am referring to are the ongoing Muslim-Christian dialog that NAE board members have advocated, the insistence by members of a recent NAE panel that Mormons be included as “Christian,” the NAE’s November, 2011, statement on disarmament, and their puzzling position on global warming. Each of these and other topics are covered in-depth in the entire article we’re making available in Take A Stand! Journal, Volume 4.
This article is continued in our Take A Stand! Journal "Where Are Evangelicals Heading?"
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(c) copyright 2011, Eric Barger
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