Oneness Pentecostalism, Religious Movements

Be Aware of Phillips, Craig and Dean (PCD) – United Pentecostal International Church (UPCI), Oneness Theology

Christian music today is very popular and there are lots of different artists and groups to choose from.  However, it seems that most people who listen to the music they buy don’t know much about the musicians background and beliefs.  It is important to know what backgrounds and beliefs the musicians have because music does influence us, both mentally and spiritually. (If you can find out/ not all musicians let their listeners know their beliefs)

Years ago I heard that Randy Phillips, Shawn Craig, and Dan Dean known as “Phillips, Craig, and Dean” were of the Oneness Pentecostal beliefs.  This came as a big shock to me since I really enjoyed listening to their style of music.  Well, I was not very happy to hear this and over time started looking into this a bit more to find this out for myself and to know if this was true.  It saddens me that what I found out is true, they are of the Oneness Pentecostal beliefs.  This information will not bring you joy if you are a Phillips, Craig, and Dean fan as I used to be.  I hope you examine this for yourselves and make the right decision to not support them any longer until they openly and repent of the Oneness Pentecostal heresies.

What do Oneness Pentecostals (UPCI) Believe about God?

The United Pentecostal Church International rejects the doctrine of the Trinity.  They believe that God is three manifestations:  Father in creation; the Son in redemption; the Holy Spirit in regeneration.

“the UPCI reflect most of the beliefs of the Holiness-Pentecostal movement, with the exception of the “second work of grace,” the historic doctrine of the Trinity, and the traditional Trinitarian formula in water baptism. It embraces the Pentecostal view that speaking in tongues is the initial sign of receiving the Holy Spirit.” (from www.upci.org/about/index.asp)

“In distinction to the doctrine of the Trinity, the UPCI holds to a oneness view of God. It views the Trinitarian concept of God, that of God eternally existing as three distinctive persons, as inadequate and a departure from the consistent and emphatic biblical revelation of God being one…Thus God is manifested as Father in creation and as the Father of the Son, in the Son for our redemption, and as the Holy Spirit in our regeneration.”  (from www.upci.org/about/index.asp)

What do Oneness Pentecostals (UPCI) Believe about Salvation?

The official teachings and doctrines of the UPCI for someone to be saved are:  A person must repent of their ways; turn to Christ; be water baptized in Jesus name only; speak in other tongues as the evidence being baptized in the Spirit; and live a holy life.

“a sinner must believe the gospel; he is commanded to repent of his sinful life, to be baptized in water in the name of Jesus Christ, and to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (from www.upci.org/about/index.asp#doctrinal)

“It is true that water itself does not contain any saving virtue, but God has chosen to include it in His plan of salvation. Peter explained, “Baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (I Peter 3:21). According to Luke 7:30, “the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized.” (from www.upci.org/doctrine/baptism.asp)

“Millions have experienced this same baptism in the Spirit. Wherever this message is proclaimed, the question is asked, “Why did God choose speaking in tongues as the initial, physical evidence of the baptism of the Holy Ghost?”…One vital reason why God chose other tongues as the initial sign of receiving the Holy Ghost is that speaking in tongues is an immediate, external evidence.” (from www.upci.org/doctrine/tongues.asp)

“The initial, outward evidence is speaking with tongues, which means speaking miraculously in languages the speaker does not know…Speaking with other tongues has been connected with Spirit baptism since the beginning of the church age.” (from www.upci.org/doctrine/Holy_Ghost.asp)

Phillips, Craig, and Dean

As I said I went researching for this information for myself and went to their websites and sent some emails asking some questions as well.  I went to Randy Phillips Church website PromiseLand to examine what they state.  Randy Phillips is Associate Pastor of the PromiseLand Church.  Here is a few questions I asked the senior Pastor, Kenneth Phillips. (Randy’s father/ link from a Oneness site)

Question to Kenneth Phillips – “What denomination are you affiliated with, Baptist, Pentecostal?”

Answer from Kenneth Phillips – “we are book of acts pentecostal.  we have learned you cannot improve on the original….kenneth phillips”

Questions to Kenneth Phillips on who God is and what a person must believe and do to be saved – “Do you believe that God is one and has been revealed as the Father in creation, the Son in redemption, and the Holy Spirit in reconciliation? For a person to be saved do they have to be water baptized only in Jesus name, and have the evidence of speaking in tongues?”

Answer from Kenneth Phillips - “THE ANSWER TO BOTH QUESTIONS IS YES!!!!!!!!!!”

(Email Date for Reply to my questions was June 28&30, 2004)

This information proves from the Randy Phillips side that they would be of the same theological doctrines as the Oneness Pentecostal movement.

Heartland Church in Irving, Texas, is of the Apostolic Churches listing, (Click Here to see)  and Dan Deanis the Pastor of Heartland Church.  What do the Apostolic Churches believe?  From the following Apostolic website it states the following:  “http://www.upci.org – This is the official website of the UPC (United Pentecostal Church). Although a different organization, they hold to the same doctrinal beliefs and standards that we hold so dear. If you are travelling and looking for an Apostolic church then this is yet another great resource, since they have every UPC church in the world listed on their website with contact information.”  (from Apostolic Links page/this link no longer exists but the quote was accurate as posted on May 2, 2005)  Another Apostolic site called “Apostolic Information Services” states the following:  “The official home page of the UPCI. This site contains information about the organization’s ministries, history, administration, constituency, coming events and more. Also, see the official home pages of the following UPCI Divisions” (From AIS Links page)  What this demonstrates is that Dan Dean, affiliated with the Apostolic Churches, which in essence is of the same type of beliefs as the UPCI, is then of the same Oneness Pentecostal beliefs.  (This information concerning Dan Dean was found 2/23/05 and is current unless otherwise noted)

There is more information on the way from us and when we have it it will be posted.  If you have any questions or comments please let us know.  I have emailed each of them but they have yet to reply, but if they do and state something something otherwise concerning this information this is currently accurate.  It has been said that they have said they are not of the Oneness beliefs but there is nothing to indicate that from what the above evidence indicates concerning both Randy Phillips being involved in ministry with his dad who clearly has a Oneness view of God and the gospel, and Dan Dean’s Church being associated with the Apostolic Church which in doctrine is Oneness.

Update on Phillips, Craig, and Dean – May 2, 2005

The following information is going to be a bit long but it is going to clear up something’s and will raise some more questions.  I have been talking with people who are involved with Phillips, Craig, and Dean music ministry and have some interesting responses to questions asked.  You will need to take your time when reading this information because there are things that are some-what sneaky in wording which in essence brings light to this subject for all to see.

Email to PCD Ministries Official Site (Sent March 16, 2005) Click Here For Site

The following is what I sent asking some important questions wanting to clear up any misunderstandings and I will given some information, but not real replies.  Below when you see words in blue they were not originally there but were added for clarification.  Any questions on that let us know.

Sent: Wednesday, March 16, 2005 6:45 PM
To: info@pcdministries.com
Subject: IMPORTANT questions needs answers

Hi there.  My name is Kelly Powers, director of “Apologetic For Christians Ministry”.  I have sent emails to Randy Phillips, Shawn Craig, and Dan Dean asking some questions concerning their views on the Trinity doctrine.  I have sent at least two emails over the last year to each of them and have not received any replies.  I hear that they were at one time of the UPCI or Oneness beliefs but then have changed.  I got a reply a while back from Kenneth Phillips (Randy’s father, senior pastor where Randy also serves as a pastor) and his replies and views were of the oneness views.  I found Dan Dean Church site listed in the Apostolic section for Churches, and Apostolic Churches are of the Oneness beliefs just as the UPCI.  I have went to each of their (Randy Phillips, Shawn Craig, and Dan Dean) Church websites and there is “very limited” information there on their views.  I would think that this controversy issue which can divide people is very important and there should be something made official from the three of them if they are no longer of the Oneness views when it comes to theology on God, Trinity, Salvation.  This should be made clear and known for people so there is no confusion.  I am sending this again because someone sent us an email saying they sent an email to you and got a reply.  I would like to have a reply to the following questions so there is no confusion.  If I receive no reply I will assume that what I have found is very correct and will continue to share what I have found out.  If I find out what I have researched is wrong I will immediately change my information so others will know the truth. (either way) 

My questions are as follows:

Phillips, Craig, and Dean – do you accept the doctrine of the Trinity and believe that there is one God revealed through three eternal distinct personages known as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Or do you accept there being one God who has been revealed through three different manifestations as the Father in creation, the Son in redemption, and the Holy Spirit in reconciliation.

Phillips, Craig, and Dean – do you believe that we are saved by faith in Christ apart from being water baptized in Jesus name only, and that we do not need to speak in tongues as the evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  Or do you believe that a person must not only believe in Jesus but be water baptized in

Jesus name only and speak in tongues having the evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit

These two questions I would like answered clearly for me to know what is true and not true on these doctrines from what you believe.  I  await your reply.  Thanks so much. 

Kelly Powers

This is the email I sent to official website of Phillips, Craig, and Dean hoping to get some clarification on issues that are of the up-most importance for Christians to know the truth about.  The first response I got was just a very generic reply with information that did not answer what I asked about, though I was happy to at least get a reply.

  • First Email Response from PCD Ministries

From: info@pcdministries.com

To: Kelly Powers

Sent: Wednesday, March 16, 2005 8:54 PM

Subject: RE: IMPORTANT questions needs answers

Kelly,

Thank you for writing.  I have attached a personal letter from Phillips Craig and Dean’s manager, as well as their Statement of Faith. 
With Regards,

Andrea Eby

PCD Ministries

Below will be the two documents that were sent for you to see for yourself.  I do caution people when reading it do not be fooled, it is not as good as it appears, which you will see addressed later.

Statement of Faith

Dear Friend:

Thank you for sharing your concerns. We understand the importance of knowing that the artists you listen to not only sing the truth but speak and believe the Truth. Please allow us to clear up any confusion regarding the belief system of PCD regarding the doctrine of the Godhead, which is often referred to as the Trinity.

In the church body, controversy often exists in matters of doctrine. However, we the members of Phillips, Craig & Dean do believe in the existence of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit – the Three in One.

We also have chosen to agree and affirm the following statements of faith, which we agreed upon when we first began with Star Song in 1992. It is the Apostles’ Creed, which believers have declared and stood upon for centuries.

The Apostles’ Creed

(This creed is called the Apostles’ Creed not because it was produced by the apostles themselves but because it contains a brief summary of their teachings. It sets forth their doctrine “in sublime simplicity, in unsurpassable brevity, in beautiful order, and with liturgical solemnity.” In its present form it is dated no later than the fourth century. More than any other Christian creed, it may justly be called an ecumenical symbol of faith. This translation of the Latin text was approved by the CRC Synod of 1988.)

I believe in God, the Father, almighty,

Creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,

Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit

And born of the virgin Mary,

He suffered under Pontius Pilate,

We crucified, dead and was buried;

He descended to hell.

The third day he rose again from the dead.

He ascended to heaven

And is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty.

From there he will come to judge the living and the dead

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

The holy catholic* church

The communions of saints

The forgiveness of sins,

The resurrection of the body,

And the life everlasting. Amen.

*catholic (small cap “c”) here refers to “of or pertaining to the whole Christian body or church.”

Please take a deep look into the lyrics of Phillips, Craig & Dean songs to find each song is based on scripture. We hold fast to the Holy Bible, and our music ministry and personal walks are grounded in these truths.

If you have any hesitations, please feel free to contact Van Alan at (the phone number was given but I did not want to put this online for all people for courtesy of Van Alan.  I also did not put his email for courtesy.  If you wish to get in contact with him then contact the email info@pcdministries.com  In the above information there is nothing stated concerning the Trinity or concerning my questions on Oneness Pentecostalism.  It is something that is true but the above information is not related to what was asked and you will see this continued in responses.

For the cause of Christ,

Randy Phillips, Shawn Craig, and Dan Dean

The above is flat out inaccurate information.  According to what I have found through their websites online each of the them (Phillips, Craig, and Dean) have been involved with their current churches for the past 17 years or more.  Let me demonstrate this clearly for you to see.

According to PromiseLand Church website Randy Phillips has been there for the last 17 years, the same Church founded and established by his dad Kenneth Phillips.  Kenneth Phillips is the senior Pastor there for the last 35 years according to their website link, and he is the one I emailed last year asking questions on who God is and what must a person do to be saved.  Here is what Kenneth Phillips said:

Question to Kenneth Phillips – “What denomination are you affiliated with, Baptist, Pentecostal?”

Answer from Kenneth Phillips - “we are book of acts pentecostal.  we have learned you cannot improve on the original….kenneth phillips”

Questions to Kenneth Phillips on who God is and what a person must believe and do to be saved – “Do you believe that God is one and has been revealed as the Father in
creation, the Son in redemption, and the Holy Spirit in reconciliation? For a person to be saved do they have to be water baptized only in Jesus name, and have the evidence of speaking in tongues?”

Answer from Kenneth Phillips – “THE ANSWER TO BOTH QUESTIONS IS YES!!!!!!!!!!”

(Email Date for Reply to my questions was June 28&30, 2004)

From PromiseLand Church Staff Link – “The Senior Pastor Kenneth and Wanda Phillips are servants of the Lord Jesus Christ. They have pastored The World of Pentecost, PromiseLand for 35 years. During this time, because of blessings and the efforts of many, phenomenal growth has included over 18,000 people being baptized in Jesus’ Name.”

From PromiseLand Church What We Believe – “We believe in one God who is eternal in His existence, Triune in His manifestation, being both Father, Son and Holy Ghost AND that He is Sovereign and Absolute in His authority. (I Timothy 3:16, Ephesians 4:4 & Colossians 2:9)”…”We believe that believers should be water baptized by immersion in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the circumcision of our hearts. It is through baptism that we publicly identify with the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ
(Romans 6:3-6; Colossians 2:11-14; Acts 2:38)”

As the above shows it is clear that Kenneth Phillips is of the same theological doctrines as the UPCI.  Randy Phillips is his son and has been with that same Church for the last 17 years (at least) as stated from their church website link.  If Randy Phillips left the UPCI as was stated why is he still serving there?  If Randy Phillips is not of the Oneness doctrines (UPCI) why can he openly state this for the public?  It is obvious that Randy Phillips is not being honest with the public and must not have any problems with his dad being a Oneness Pentecostal preacher, therefore it proves what was said about him leaving the UPCI 10 years ago is simply not true.

Dan Dean is Pastor of Heartland Church sine 1999 and has been involved with that Church since 1985.  Along with Heartland Church being listed in the Apostolic listing in Texas for Churches they are also listed in the Pentecostal listings which has lots of UPCI Churches listed.  As I have been pointing out if Dan Dean is no longer associated with the UPCI then prove it.  The Apostolic movement is many ways theological similar as the UPCI.  Why is Heartland Church listed in the Texas yellowpages online in the Apostolic section and in the Pentecostal section which has many UPCI Churches listed if he was no longer wanting to be associated or connected with them?  It does not make much sense.  Along with that there is more information concerning Dan Dean that gives more red flags with not being openly honest with the public concerning these issues.  Consider the following information:

From Heartland Church About Us Our Pastor - “Pastor Dan and Becky Dean have been the Senior Pastors at Heartland Church in Irving, Texas since September 1999, but there involvement in church ministry began many years ago. Shortly after being married in 1976, they served in ministry in Richardson, Texas; Lancaster, Ohio, and Houston, Texas. In 1985 they moved to Irving, Texas to serve at Heartland Church, which was then pastored by Bishop Jack and Doris DeHart, Becky’s parents.  Pastor Dan served as Music Director and Associate Pastor under his father-in-law for 14 years, until Bishop DeHart, seeing that God was elevating both of their calls, passed the pastor’s torch to Dan and Becky in late 1999.” 

From Heartland Church What We Believe – “We believe in the true one God who is revealed as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. (John 14:18-27; II Corinthians 13:14)…We believe in the necessity of water baptism by immersion in the Name of the Lord. (Matthew 28:19; Acts 2:38; 10:47,48; Acts 8:38-39)…We believe that it is the will of God that each believer be filled with the Holy Spirit and speak with new tongues. (Acts 1:8, 19:1-6)”

From Impact Ministries Statement of Faith Bishop Jack DeHart (Father of Becky Dean/ Becky is the wife of Dan Dean) – “there is One True God that has manifested Himself as Father in creation, Son in redemption and the Holy Spirit in emanation. (Deuteronomy 6:4; I Timothy 3:16; Acts 2:33)…that the infilling of the Holy Spirit is a promise to be received by all believers. (Acts 1:4-5k 2:39)…that all should be buried with Christ in baptism. (Romans 6:3-5; Acts 2:38)”

From Impact Ministries Main Page – “The Lord Jesus is bringing together a true APOSTOLIC HOUSEthat will impact and impart the greatest revival the church has ever known.”

According to Impact Ministries Products page – They have resources listed there for people to get and there is a email link to heartland church.  At Heartland Church Staff link Bishop Jack Dehart is listed there with a link to contact him, along with Doris Dehart.

The above information is what Heartland Church believes, involvement with Bishop Jack and Doris Dehart, what what Impact Ministries believes.  Why this is important?   This is to simply show that Bishop Jack Dehart still very much connected to Heartland Church, thus showing Dan Dean is still associated with oneness stuff.  Looking at the “What We Believe” quotes from both Heartland Church and Impact Ministries it is clear they have beliefs that are of Oneness doctrines and even use the identical wording.  All one has to do is check what the UPCI believes and it is clear.  The above information demonstrates that even though Dan Dean (Phillips, Craig, and Dean) claim to not be associated with the UPCI and their doctrines any longer is simply not true.

Shawn Craig is not as obvious as Randy Phillips and Dan Dean on these issues, but he is in ministry with them, thus shows something.  “Shawn currently serves as the Music Pastor at South County Christian Center, where he has ministered for the past twenty years” (now Crosspoint Church) As stated above each of them were raised in the UPCI and least somewhere in the area of 10 years ago, that is what is said.  But the information is proving otherwise.  Shawn has been in this Church for the past 20 years.  There is not much more information about Shawn at this time.

***Doctrinal Letter From Van Alan, Music Manager of Phillips, Craig, and Dean***

Dear Kelly,

Thank you for your time in genuinely investigating the doctrinal issues surrounding Phillips Craig & Dean. (This part of what was sent was real, the rest below was just something copied and pasted from what they had already for people asking questions.  The reason I know this is because I read this before somewhere else before this was sent to me.  Kind of sad when they don’t give real answers).

PCD as a group does not publicly discuss doctrine in any way beyond that which is stated in the Apostle’s Creed. They have a ministry of sharing Christ and Him crucified in churches of many diverse doctrines across America (e.g. Assembly of God, Baptist, Methodist, etc). They leave specific teachings of doctrines to the local church and its pastors.

Unfortunately there were articles written many years ago that aggressively labeled PCD as being anti-Trinitarian believers. Because PCD desires to continue having a multi-denominational ministry, they do not have the luxury of publicly discussing their personal doctrinal beliefs without offending someone and ultimately causing division; that is not their calling.

They don’t have the luxury?  That is a sad cop-out response.  The Gospel divides folks plain and simple.  If they truly were following what the Word teaches they would not be so worried about offending people for the cause of truth.  As to “that is not their calling” statement, excuse me?  Each of them are Pastors, they have a leading to people, they sing many songs to which many Christians listen to, and they are accountable to be truthful to the public.

As a point of fact, all three members were born into families deep in the United Pentecostal Church movement. All three work in churches that were previously UPC. However, at least 10 years ago, each of them left the UPC and have been on their own personal spiritual journeys from there.

“What I can say is that because of the intense public scrutiny many years back, they have allowed me to share one specific point, and they will not say anything beyond this because of their close family relationships with people who remain a member of their past UPC denomination and doctrinal history. Neither the group nor the individual members of Phillips Craig & Dean believe in a modalist approach to the Trinity.”

That appears to be good but as been shown concerning Randy Phillips association with his dad Kenneth Phillips and what is stated at their “What We Believe” section this is simply not true.  As to Dan Dean, again, this is not true.  He has very similar statements at Heartland Church site which are similar to Bishop Jack Dehart who clearly has oneness theology and terms.  As to Shawn Craig, as stated before, there is not much information about him but he is involved with Randy and Dan who do have oneness associations and terms for beliefs.

“Thankfully every major Christian ministry that has addressed this issue with us directly has come out in support of PCD based on the facts and personal discussions with the guys.”

It’s to sad that those “major Christian ministry” people have not really investigated this a bit more.  Unfortunately many Christians are un-aware of this and are being lead to believe Phillips, Craig, and Dean are ok to listen to.  As I stated from the first portion of this information I used to love listening to this group, they do have great voices and harmony, there is no doubt of that.  What concerns me is the lack of honestly in all of this, as will be seen below with some email dialogues that I had with the manager of this group.  All I can say is I wish people would just be open and honest, but unfortunately this is not going to happen with this group. (maybe one day they will)

If you were to attend their concert, you would find they address the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit in the present tense at different moments throughout the event. They believe that when Jesus was on earth, God the Father was absolutely reigning as scripture notes in Heaven. When Jesus prayed in the garden, He was speaking to His Father. This is definitely not consistent with a modalist belief, but it is consistent with the beliefs of the individual members of PCD.

Again, sounds good on the surface.  When oneness believers speak of the Father in heaven and Jesus being on earth, they talk about Jesus the man who spoke to God the Father who is Spirit.  They say Jesus was in the flesh but was God as well in authority, it gets complicated let me tell you.  Oneness views on Jesus praying to the Father again is simply that Jesus the man was speaking to the Father who is Spirit.  Ask a Oneness person their thoughts on that and you will scratch your head saying, “can you say that again, I am confused?”  As stated already, Phillips, Craig, and Dean have evidence showing they still have some Oneness beliefs and they definitely have Oneness associations in ministry, to that there is no doubt.

While this has become somewhat of a difficult issue, I fully respect the bottom-line argument. I trust this will speak to the heart of the issue and resolve any concerns that may have been raised. Thank you for personally addressing this with us. Let me know if you have any further questions.

Yours,

Van Alan
Manager – PCD

Well this did not solve the difficult issue and raises more concerns.  I did start the process of contacting Van Alan, manager of PCD.  Below will be our dialogues which were interesting.  Read them carefully!

I replied to Andrea stating the following.  The above two documents were not real responses but forwarded information that was done previously and they did not address the questions I had asked, at least not in detail.  These were sent to me by Andrea from PCD Ministries and I have nothing bad to say about her, she could only send what she was given, and I thank her for her kindness.  Next will be my response to what was sent to me.

My Response to Andrea concerning what was sent to me concerning the two documents

From: Kelly Powers
Sent: Thursday, March 17, 2005 8:31 PM
To: Info
Subject: Hello there

Hi Andrea.  The attachments that you sent were things I have already read, one from online and another that was sent to me by email from someone else.  The problem that I am having right now is what I have shared before concerning Kenneth Phillips being of oneness views and Randy Phillips serving in the same Church.  And Dan Dean Church is considered an Apostolic Church according to the directory for them in Texas, and Apostolic is essentially the same as oneness.  If as one of those attachments states is true, that each of the three have left the upci beliefs how come Randy is serving in a Church where his dad is senior pastor and has those views?  How come Dan Dean’s Church is considered Apostolic if he has left the oneness beliefs?  These questions are not answered in what was sent to me and I have emailed each of the three repeatedly for some answers.  I come to the conclusion that they still have some beliefs that are oneness because if they truly were not then they would not be involved with Churches that essentially are, they would distance themselves so people would know.  I sent this email back to you yesterday and go no reply and I will guess if I don’t get a reply to this that I am correct on what I am seeing.  I wish I was not but it seems that this is the truth concerning Phillips, Craig, and Dean.  I wish they would have the guts to stand for truth so others would know even if it causes a stir within their families.  The Gospel of Jesus Christ divides people, Jesus taught that, and who are we going to put first?  God or people?  I choose God.  I would like it very much if you would send each of them (Phillips, Craig, and Dean) my emails to you so they would read them and maybe reply, but I doubt it.  Thanks again, I do hope to hear from you but I doubt I will.

Kelly

Second Response from Andrea

From: info@pcdministries.com

To: Kelly Powers

Sent: Thursday, March 17, 2005 10:33 PM

Subject: RE: Hello there

Kelly,

After receiving your second email, I forwarded your questions to Van Alan, the manager for PCD.  His phone number was on the bottom of the letter you received with the invitation to contact him if you had additional questions.  I asked him to be in contact with you because this is part of his role as manager.  I did not contact you directly because I do not have authority to speak into this situation and did not want to frustrate you further.

I understand your concern and would ask you to contact Van for any additional dialogue about this issue.  His email is … and his office phone is … (Again, I took out the phone number & email for courtesy for Van Alan)

Andrea Eby

PCD Ministries

After receiving the above email from Andrea, I sent an email to Van Alan asking the same questions again to him and I asked some questions concerning the two documents sent to me concerning Phillips, Craig, and Dean, and the emails between Andrea and myself.

First Email to Van Alan, Music Manager of Phillips, Craig, and Dean

From:  Kelly Powers

To:  Van Alan

Sent: Friday, March 18, 2005 10:49 AM

Subject: Hello from Kelly Powers

Hello Van Alan.  I am writing to you because Andrea Eby pointed me to you with my questions concerning Phillips, Craig, and Dean.  I have read the Doctrine Letter and Statement of Faith attachments but I am still concerned about a few things as you will read below.  I am curious as to why Randy serves in a Church as a Pastor with his dad who has oneness views on God and salvation?  I sent a few emails last year to Kenneth Phillips and he responded to my questions with oneness answers, identical with the UPCI.  Here is the email dialogue that I had with Kenneth last year:

Question to Kenneth Phillips – “What denomination are you affiliated with, Baptist, Pentecostal?”

Answer from Kenneth Phillips – “we are book of acts pentecostal.  we have learned you cannot improve on the original….kenneth phillips”

Questions to Kenneth Phillips on who God is and what a person must believe and do to be saved – “Do you believe that God is one and has been revealed as the Father increation, the Son in redemption, and the Holy Spirit in reconciliation? For a person to be saved do they have to be water baptized only in Jesus name, and have the evidence of speaking in tongues?”

Answer from Kenneth Phillips – “THE ANSWER TO BOTH QUESTIONS IS YES!!!!!!!!!!”

(Email Date for Reply to my questions was June 27-30 2004)

Why is the Heartland Church (Dan Dean) considered Apostolic or in the Apostolic section for Churches in the Texas directory?  I received one email from Craig Ferris, I believe he is the guy who is in Charge of Dan Dean’s Church website and I sent him two emails asking him why it was in the Apostolic directory but no reply still. (as of 3/18/05) This is the one they just had before with www.christ-temple.org but I guess they have changed names and website address but there old one is still online and it is in the Apostolic section.

Here is the link for that

http://yellowpages.superpages.com/listings.jsp?S=TX&PS=45&STYPE=S&CID=00000518797

The link above has changed for their site and in the directory, though it is still in the Apostolic listing.  Here is that link listing for Heartland Church (www.theheartlandchurch.com)

Heartland Church is now listed as www.heartlandchurch.com.  Click Here

If each of the three has turned from their old ways and now are no longer associated or involved with oneness then how come it seems two of them still are?

When reading the Doctrine Letter it states the following:  “PCD as a group does not publicly discuss doctrine in any way beyond that which is stated in the Apostle’s Creed. They have a ministry of sharing Christ and Him crucified in churches of many diverse doctrines across America (e.g. Assembly of God, Baptist, Methodist, etc). They leave specific teachings of doctrines to the local church and its pastors.”   I just don’t see that being Biblically accountable and reasonable for the body of Christ.  Each of them are Pastors in various areas, they serve people, they write songs and many people listen to them around the world, they are accountable for what they believe.  They need to publicly denounce the oneness views so that there is no confusion period.  The Apostle’s Creed is nice and when it was first put forth many years ago it had much more significance but today many people say those same things but have bad theology and even by Biblical examination another Jesus and another Gospel.   (Galatians 1, 2 Corinthians 11:4 & 13-15)

In the Doctrine Letter it said the following:  “Unfortunately there were articles written many years ago that aggressively labeled PCD as being anti-Trinitarian believers. Because PCD desires to continue having a multi-denominational ministry, they do not have the luxury of publicly discussing their personal doctrinal beliefs without offending someone and ultimately causing division; that is not their calling.”  They have not the luxury of publicly discussing their personal doctrinal beliefs without offending someone?  I am sorry that is not Biblical reasoning, the Gospel offends, Jesus made that clear. Quote:  “34 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.   35 “For I came to SET A MAN AGAINST HIS FATHER, AND A DAUGHTER AGAINST HER MOTHER, AND A DAUGHTER-IN-LAW AGAINST HER MOTHER-IN-LAW;   36 and A MAN’S ENEMIES WILL BE THE MEMBERS OF HIS HOUSEHOLD.   37 “He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.” (Matthew 10:34-37 NASB)  It is not a calling to make it clear to people what you believe, it is the Christian duty to be honest and put the ways of God first, calling has nothing to do with being open to people.

The Doctrine Letter says:  “What I can say is that because of the intense public scrutiny many years back, they have allowed me to share one specific point, and they will not say anything beyond this because of their close family relationships with people who remain a member of their past UPC denomination and doctrinal history. “Neither the group nor the individual members of Phillips Craig & Dean believe in a modalist approach to the Trinity.””  If they don’t believe that way anymore then praise God for that.  However, how come Randy Phillips serves in a Church where the senior Pastor, his dad Kenneth Phillips still holds to the oneness views of God and salvation?  How come Dan Dean Church is listed in the Apostolic (Apostolic Churches are essentially the same as the UPCI in doctrine when it comes to God and salvation) section for directory in Texas?

The Doctrine Letter says:  “If you were to attend their concert, you would find they address the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit in the present tense at different moments throughout the event. They believe that when Jesus was on earth, God the Father was absolutely reigning as scripture notes in Heaven. When Jesus prayed in the garden, He was speaking to His Father. This is definitely not consistent with a modalist belief, but it is consistent with the beliefs of the individual members of PCD.   While this has become somewhat of a difficult issue, I fully respect the bottom-line argument. I trust this will speak to the heart of the issue and resolve any concerns that may have been raised. Thank you for personally addressing this with us. Let me know if you have any further questions.”  Again, if what you say is correct they need to make this public for people despite the fact of not wanting to offend anyone.  As I said before so I say again, the Gospel offends people.  I have asked questions about Randy Phillips and Dan Dean both having involvement with oneness stuff and I hope as it states above that I can get a response of why.  I have sent each of them (Phillips, Craig, Dean) repeatedly emails asking them questions but I have yet to get a response from them.  I have no personal agenda to ruin Phillips, Craig, and Dean, I enjoyed listening to them a while back.  But if they are playing the fence with doctrines and truth then I cannot support them nor endorse them.

First Response From Van Alan From The Above Email

From: Van Alan

To: Kelly Powers

Cc: info@pcdministries.com

Sent: Saturday, March 19, 2005 2:33 PM

Subject: PCD & The Trinity

Kelly -

I am impressed with your attention to detail.  It has been a while since I have read such a letter in any form!

As you noted below from one of my earlier letters, PCD allowed me to publicly state their position on The Trinity.  While they have fully stepped away from any form of modalism from their past, they do not feel it is appropriate to publicly condemn those who haven’t.  Personally…I believe that when Jesus spoke of breaking ties with family, it was more about whether or not they chose to follow Christ.

(This is not accurate.  They have not broken off or stepped fully away from any form of modalism/ another term for Oneness theology)

I forwarded your email to the guys, and questioned them about affiliations once again.  Dan Dean’s church is independent & does not claim to be part of any formal group of churches (Apostolic or any other); they changed the name of the church some time ago & many things have progressed from there.  While Randy has started a new church in a new location, he will never speak publicly regarding this issue beyond what he personally believes (which is stated in the letter you noted below).

As stated above concerning Dan Dean I have found more information concerning this thus showing it be more involvement with Oneness stuff.  As to Randy, he is still at the PromiseLand Church website being stated as a Pastor there.  I don’t see anything showing he has left to start a new Church.  But even if he did he still have been involved with PromiseLand for many years now and his dad is clearly of the Oneness beliefs.

It is my conviction that while some like yourself clearly have a call to bring about change by addressing issues head-on…others have a similar call to impact people through enduring patience and love through a consistent showing of personal support as they strive to seek God and know Him more.

It is true that we are to be patient, loving, showing personal support to people, but we still tell them the truth so they don’t die not knowing the true God of the Bible.  I hate saying this but this is the way I read the above statement.  It is a nice feel good statement which in the end is giving a mis-leading impression on what true Christianity is.

I hope this helps.

Yours,

Van

My Response (2nd Email) To Van Alan First Email To Me

From:  Kelly Powers

To:  Van Alan

Sent: Saturday, March 19, 2005 7:30 PM

Subject: Re: PCD & The Trinity

Greetings Van:
Good to  hear from you and thanks for the nice remarks in regards to my detail and convictions.  A couple things to say in response.  Glad to hear that you have sent what I have shared to each of them, I truly hope for a reply.  Myself, I want badly to be able to tell others to have no worries about them in regards to Oneness doctrines and affiliations.  I believe as we follow the teachings of the Word we need to be clear who what we believe and be open with that with others, even if it costs us.   I understand the hardness those who have loved ones in false groups as I deal with lots of Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses, it is not a fun adventure at times, but in the end it is rewarding.  I do wish for a bit further clarification on two main issues I have addressed.  One, is Randy Phillips still serving with his dad at PromiseLand Church?  According to the PromiseLand Church website it seems to indicate he is.  Reason I ask is that would indicate he is (and was recently) serving with his dad who does have Oneness theology.  Two, I know you responded about Dan Dean’s Church not having being a part of any formal group but that must of changed not to long of ago since there old site (www.christ-temple.org) was listed in the Apostolic Churches directory online for Texas.  If that is not the case anymore then that is great to hear, but for some reason the old link is still online for his Church.  I guess that would need to be addressed and changed so those like myself will not assume they are affiliated with the Apostolic Churches.  On these two questions can you share with me a bit more on Randy starting a new Church and Dan Dean old link website still being online in the Apostolic section.  This would indicate to me that they were both involved not to long ago with issues that I have brought up and would seem to indicate they are now not.  Please help me out a bit more on this.  I appreciate your reply, it does give some light on this and I hope you understand where I am coming from in all of this.  I get emails and questions from people through our ministry concerning many things, and this has been one of them.  Thanks.

Kelly Powers

Second Email Response From Van Alan

From:  Van Alan

To: Kelly Powers

Cc: info@pcdministries.com

Sent: Tuesday, March 22, 2005 2:37 AM

Subject: Re: PCD & The Trinity

Kelly -

As I shared, Randy, Dan & Shawn have said what they believe regarding the Holy Trinity.  They feel their recent statements have answered the issue, and do not intend to have any deeper discussion regarding this or other doctrine beyond that which is addressed in their music.

Well let it be noted that I have tried emailing each of them from their Church websites, still not a single reply, and really don’t expect one now.  The above statement shows their lack of true honestly for the truth of God’s Word.  They have not answered the issues but have made it hard for people to know what they believe because they are not open about this publicly.  They don’t intend to have any deeper discussions regarding this because it would clearly show they are not being honest.  Unfortunately this shows they are being evasive to the public.  If they truly are not of the Oneness views they need to leave their associations to whom they are involved with, publicly repent, state this clearly, and be honest.  Who are we to please?  God or man?

Again, while your calling is obviously very legitimate…they feel theirs is to walk alongside those from their past & not to publicly condemn them.  They see the Lord reveal Himself through love and patience far more effectively than by any fear or condemnation they could deliver.  For them…this is an issue of doctrine which is not intended to divide the body.

“For them…this is an issue of doctrine which is not intended to divide the body.”???  Wow!  This truly is the dividing line folks.  The truth of the Tri-Unity of God is a dividing line, you just can’t get around that.  The above statement shows the lack of truth concerning Phillips, Craig, and Dean, and their manager.  Those of us who reject the Oneness beliefs are not saying to go out and be a judge condemning them to hell, but we are to make it clear that this is a salvation issue.  If we truly love people will we not share the truth with them?  If a person does not know the God of the Bible truly and has a different gospel message, they are not saved, no matter how nice they are.  We need to wake up from this wishy washy thinking and get Biblically thinking.

In speaking with Dan, he shared with me that while all Apostolic churches do not hold to the same doctrine, his church is fully independent not teaching a modalist doctrine.

If this is true then Dan Dean needs to change his wording in his “What We Believe” section, stop associating in ministry with Bishop Jack Dehart who clearly has Oneness theology, and make this public.  It is true that not all Apostolic Churches hold to the same doctrine.  However, majority of them do hold to the same views on God as the UPCI.  If Dan Dean wants to be clear then he should take his church out of the listing of being associated with Apostolic and Pentecostal Churches that has been pointed out above.  Just be listed as Independent or Non-denominational, make it simple!

I hope this has helped speak to the heart of this matter, and ask that you respect their wishes to not further engage them in discussion or debate on this as it has become a very personal matter.

Thanks for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Van Alan

I respect their wishes.  It is clear they are not being truthful to the public about their beliefs and they are being evasive.  They are in our prayers and we would encourage you who read this to pray for them, their families, friends, that they truly break off from this stuff.

  • (The information above is what is known currently as of May 2, 2005.  If you have any questions please contact.  If we find new information, changes, etc. we will post it.  God bless you.)

 

  • New information as of September 22, 2005!!!

This information is being posted 9/22/05 but I found this out about a month ago.  I was doing some checking on links to see if anything new was at the PromiseLand Church and there was something different from before.  Randy Phillips was no longer posted at their site as being an associate Pastor there.  That got me curious.  The reason I as curious was because nothing was posted (as of 8/21/05 and has not been posted still) of Randy leaving.  I somehow found Randy’s new Church site where he is the senior Pastor of Promiseland West and did not see anything there posted when this took place.  However this I found in their about us section:  “Randy Phillips of Phillips, Craig, and Dean, along with his wife Denise and daughters Garland (17) and Lily Pearl (2) have served at PromiseLand Central in Austin for 20 years. Recently, their desire to start a new church in West/Southwest Austin has become a reality.”  Well wanting to make sure if there was anything new concerning Randy’s position and beliefs I went looking for a Doctrinal Statement or Statement of Faith, but found nothing, nada!  This is something that I believe all Church websites and ministries show have so people can know what they believe.  Since I did not see anything I decided to email and see if I would get a response.  Below will be my email followed by Randy’s responses.  This was very shocking.

From: Kelly Powers
Sent: Sunday, August 21, 2005 8:14 PM
To: randy@promiselandwest.com
Subject: question on promiseland church

Hello there.  I found your site and was curious if promiseland church west is of the same affiliation and beliefs that promiseland church with Kenneth Phillips.

I am assuming so but did not see anything on beliefs, statement of faith, or links to other ministries.

Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you.

From: randy@promiselandwest.com

To: Kelly Powers

Sent: Monday, August 22, 2005 9:57 AM

Subject: RE: question on promiseland church

Thanks for your inquiry.  We begin our new member’s class this Sunday at 9AM and would love for you to be there to ask any question you want.

R>

From: Kelly Powers
Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2005 6:14 AM
To: randy@promiselandwest.com
Subject: Re: question on promiseland church

Hi there Randy.  I dont live in your area.  I do like to listen and check things out online at times.  So with what I asked are you the same type of Church as PromiseLand Central and beliefs?  Thanks.

From: randy@promiselandwest.com

To: Kelly Powers

Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2005 10:35 AM

Subject: RE: question on promiseland church

Kelly and Theresa,

We’re a Bible church and that’s probably all the info you’ll need since your membership won’t be with us.

R>

From:  Kelly Powers

To: randy@promiselandwest.com

Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2005 6:18 PM

Subject: Re: question on promiseland church

Hello Randy.  I do thank you for replying but I dont see the relevence of not being a member at your Church on what I asked.  I dont think I was being un-polite or anything like that.  I am going to assume you are the same as PromiseLand Central Church.  Do only those who go to your Church get to know what beliefs you have or affliations?  Thanks.

From: randy@promiselandwest.com

To: ‘Kelly & Theresa Powers’

Sent: Wednesday, August 24, 2005 6:09 AM

Subject: Read: question on promiseland church

Your message

To:  randy@promiselandwest.com
Subject:  Re: question on promiseland church
Sent:  08/23/2005 6:18 PM

was read on 08/24/2005 6:08 AM.

This is very disturbing information because Randy Phillips does not care about others who want to know about their beliefs unless they are members of his church?  My last email he did not reply to but I did get a “Read Receipt” meaning he did read it.  Words are hard to express the frustration of people who are not being open and honest.  I decided to email Kenneth Phillips to try to find out more but that was just as bad.  Below are the email exchanges.

From: Kelly Powers

To: kphillips@promiselandchurch.net

Sent: Wednesday, August 24, 2005 7:30 PM

Subject: Hello

Hello there I am just wanting to know about PromiseLand Church West.  Did that Church start recently this year and would they have the same type of beliefs as your Church.  Thank you very much.

From: kphillips@promiselandchurch.net

To: Kelly Powers

Sent: Friday, August 26, 2005 10:21 AM

Subject: Re: Hello

this church is an extention of our church.  randy philiips. my son is
the pastor and they are averaging over 400 in 6 months.  go see them and
if you are not satisfied, come to see us…..kenneth phillips

From: Kelly Powers

To: kphillips@promiselandchurch.net

Sent: Friday, August 26, 2005 6:52 PM

Subject: Re: Hello

Thank you so much for replying.  Are they the same in beliefs are your
fellowship since they are an extension of your Church?  Thank you for your
reply

From: kphillips@promiselandchurch.net

To: Kelly Powers

Sent: Sunday, August 28, 2005 9:05 AM

Subject: Re: Hello

kelly, their website is prominselandwest.com

Not trying to insult but I can see where Randy gets his type of responses.  I asked clear questions to both Randy and Kenneth concerning their beliefs and both of them gave the run-around.  Now someone may say something like, “Randy did not say he had the same beliefs as PromiseLand Central Church”, or “Kenneth Phillips did not say his son had the same beliefs as he did”, but the facts are clear.  Kenneth Phillips did say that “PromsiseLand West” was an extension of their church which would give reasonable evidence that they would be of the same beliefs.  Randy just recently started a new church but previous to that he was with his dad for 20 years according to the PromiseLand West “About Us” section. (above quoted)  As noted before there was nothing posted at PromiseLand Central Church concerning Randy leaving.  PromiseLand Central Church website had Randy posted as a Pastor previously, at least up to May 2, 2005 but they took that information off not to long ago. (not sure when but it was after May 2, 2005)  What is the point of this information?  I have shared this because this is new stuff for people to know.  I don’t know of anything new concerning Dan Dean or Shawn Craig, as of yet anyways.  There is nothing that I know of that these guys have changed in their doctrinal beliefs, and I have personally given them opportunities to share.  As it stands they are still associated with Oneness churches and use Oneness terms themselves, and they have not made any type of effort to tell the public where they stand concerning the Trinity vs. Oneness beliefs.  Our hearts are not to tear them down but we pray something will spark one day for them to state publicly what they believe, and we pray that they will denounce Oneness beliefs.  If you have comments, questions, or information you wish to share concerning this please contact us

Discussion

36 thoughts on “Be Aware of Phillips, Craig and Dean (PCD) – United Pentecostal International Church (UPCI), Oneness Theology

  1. Praise the Lord for Phillips, Craig, & Dean
    I was not saddened but rejoice that they know the truth, and I pray that one day you also would know the truth, be set free from the teachings of the Harlot The Church of Rome where your trinity comes from!

    Posted by Richard White | December 18, 2012, 7:46 AM
  2. Oh my heart grieves. Richard, even if you wanted us to believe in your “other gospel”, insulting where our beliefs come from isn’t the way to do it. This is all so sad and scary :( The Word says in the last days any will depart form the faith… and dare I add, create new ones that are a failed attempt at analyzing and understanding the triune existence of the Trinity. Some things simply cannot be comprehended in our time, why do people try to analyze with their finite minds what an infinite God is in His existence??

    And Richard, regardless if you think your doctrine is correct, surely you cannot agree with the level of secrecy and overall dodging the all-critical statements and questions mentioned above? They might as well have simply said “It’s none of your business.” If they feel they have a multi-denominational ministry and would choose not to split hairs over doctrine, but they refuse to explain what that doctrine IS, wouldn’t it suffice to say that their goal and desire is to actually bring people into their belief?? I think it is deceptive and despicable :(

    Posted by Susie | January 30, 2013, 9:21 PM
  3. As with Richard White, I praise the Lord for Phillips, Craig and Dean. Susie said it clearly that the Holy Roman church is where “her” beliefs come from. Let’s see, that was over 300 years after Christ. Thank God that there are those that understand the transcendence of the God of the old testament to the Savior and God of the new. As with PCD our beliefs come from the bible.

    I really thought this ignorant discrimination and witch hunt of finding the “oneness” people went out with the early ’80’s. For ALL reading these posts. . .guess what . . . . most of YOUR music comes from “us” the “oneness pentecostals”. We are in every studio, Every genre. Every style. Every song that you tap your feet to, praise the Lord to, are convicted by, blessed by and motivated by, probably has it’s roots in “oneness” doctrine.

    We do not corner the market on truth, nor do you. God is a mystery the scripture says and the incorporation of worship from all corners will encourage, uplift and clarify the essential being of an almighty savior and reveal truth.

    Posted by Russ Holmes | March 7, 2013, 6:24 AM
  4. Russ, thanks for taking the time to come and share some comments. Unfortunately you are in error and miss the clarity of the Scriptures.

    You said: “As with Richard White, I praise the Lord for Phillips, Craig and Dean. Susie said it clearly that the Holy Roman church is where “her” beliefs come from. Let’s see, that was over 300 years after Christ. Thank God that there are those that understand the transcendence of the God of the old testament to the Savior and God of the new. As with PCD our beliefs come from the bible.”

    First off, Susie did not say the Trinity came from the Roman Church (Roman Catholicism), Richard falsely accused the Trinity coming from them but that is not accurate. With that being said, you falsely misrepresented what Susie said and you should be respectful. It is one thing to made accusations, but saying someone said something when they clearly did not is slander. As to the Trinity, that understanding is clearly in the Word, not the RCC. Now you said your beliefs come from the Bible. So according to your view, when Jesus was the Father in the flesh on the earth some 2000 years ago, who did Jesus speak to when Jesus said, “Father forgive them” (Luke 23:34), or when the voice from heaven said, “This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17), or when Jesus said “Now, Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.” (John 17:5) Each of those and many others clearly prove Jesus and the Father are distinct personages, thus the Oneness view is in error. Can you reply to these verses and explain how Jesus is not talking to the Father as being distinct from Himself, can you?

    The rest of your comments do not need to be replied to. So I ask you to have the same confidence with your accusations and reply to what I have asked you, and prove it.

    P.S. you should correct your statement about what Susie said, apologize and show respect in the conversation.

    Kelly

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 7, 2013, 7:49 PM
  5. Russ,
    You are wrong about the Catholic church coming into existence 300 years after Christ. The Catholic church is the church that Christ established. Here is what early Catholics (church fathers) had to say about it:

    See that ye all follow the bishop, even as Christ Jesus does the Father, and the presbytery as ye would the apostles. Do ye also reverence the deacons, as those that carry out the appointment of God. Let no man do anything connected with the Church without the bishop. Let that be deemed a proper Eucharist, which is [administered] either by the bishop, or by one to whom he has entrusted it. Wherever the bishop shall appear, there let the multitude also be; by the bishop, or by one to whom he has entrusted it. Wherever the bishop shall appear, there let the multitude also be; even as, wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church.” Ignatius of Antioch, Epistle to the Smyrneans, 8:2 (c. A.D. 110).

    “[A]ll the people wondered that there should be such a difference between the unbelievers and the elect, of whom this most admirable Polycarp was one, having in our own times been an apostolic and prophetic teacher, and bishop of the Catholic Church which is in Smyrna. For every word that went out of his mouth either has been or shall yet be accomplished.” Martyrdom of Polycarp, 16:2 (A.D. 155).

    “…to be in honour however with the Catholic Church for the ordering of ecclesiastical discipline…one to the Laodicenes, another to the Alexandrians, both forged in Paul’s name to suit the heresy of Marcion, and several others, which cannot be received into the Catholic Church; for it is not fitting that gall be mixed with honey. The Epistle of Jude no doubt, and the couple bearing the name of John, are accepted by the Catholic Church…But of Arsinous, called also Valentinus, or of Militiades we receive nothing at all.” The fragment of Muratori (A.D. 177).

    “[N]or does it consist in this, that he should again falsely imagine, as being above this [fancied being], a Pleroma at one time supposed to contain thirty, and at another time an innumerable tribe of Aeons, as these teachers who are destitute of truly divine wisdom maintain; while the Catholic Church possesses one and the same faith throughout the whole world, as we have already said.” Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 1:10,3 (A.D. 180).

    Posted by JO | March 8, 2013, 2:49 AM
  6. Richard,
    “the harlot church of rome” gave you your bible! How can you trust the cause more than the agent?

    It was not until the Councils of Hippo(393AD) and Carthage(397,419 AD) that the Catholic Church defined which books made it into the New Testament and which didn’t.

    Posted by JO | March 8, 2013, 3:05 AM
  7. Kelly, if the doctrine of the trinity did not come from the Catholic church which church did it come from? I was under the impression that the Trinity doctrine was formulated at the council of Nicea 325 AD which was a Catholic church council.

    Posted by JO | March 8, 2013, 3:17 AM
  8. Hello Jo. Knowing that you are a Roman Catholic I don’t want to intensionally insult you. The phrase “Catholic Church” was a common phrase or wording in the first few centuries of the Christianity. There is nothing wrong with the phrase “Catholic Church” when properly understood, as being universal Christians, not the Roman Catholic Church. I would not disagree that those whom were of the “Catholic Church” were involved in dealing with false teachings that were contrary to the Trinity Doctrine and that there were Creeds formulated to make it clear what they believed to be true and what was false.

    With that being said, whether through those in councils, or with the creeds, it really does not matter, it goes back to what does the Bible teach? If the Creeds stated that Jesus was Michael the arch angel, would you cling to it as being true? If the councils stated that Jesus was not raised from the dead in the flesh, but was raised in a ghost like form, would you cling to it? My basic point is, we get our foundation for doctrine from what the Word of God teaches, from the prophets and apostles, not a council or some organizational church.

    The Old Testament gives much doctrine pertaining to the Trinity, and the New Testament gives clarification on God being three personages revealed as the Father, Jesus (Son), and the Holy Spirit. So, which church did it come from? No church. It came from the Word of God, through the prophets and apostles, and thus that is the heritage of the Christian church.

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 12, 2013, 1:42 PM
  9. Hello Jo. The Bible did not come from the Roman Catholic Church, but from God speaking to prophets and apostles. The Roman Catholic Church had nothing to do with the Old Testament, they had that clearly some 150 years prior to Jesus’ birth. Secondly, the New Testament did have a council that came to a consensus on the New Testament books based on inspiration, authorship, accuracy, and doctrine. The early church fathers quoted from all of the New Testament books prior to the 300’s, thus showing them being accepted as the Word of God prior to any official councils. In fact there was an accepted canon around 170 AD all of the NT books were accepted, with Hebrews, James, and 3 John still being examined for inspiration, doctrine, and authorship. This can be researched online, this is not a secret.

    So in a sense the “Catholic Church” was involved, as I shared before, as universal Christians, not the Roman Catholic Church. I would encourage to take a look into Bible history, here is a resourceful article with information on the Bible canon, text, and formation process. click here

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 12, 2013, 1:53 PM
  10. *sigh, thank you for coming to my defense, Kelly, however it’s clear with statements like this (Russ’) that it’s clear there will always be some who will be objective in their questions and pursuit of the truth, and there will always be those who seek to divide the body. God was clear in His word about dissention as well, where is this in our doctrine today??

    Posted by Susie | March 12, 2013, 6:07 PM
  11. Hi Kelly, I am not at all offended, i have heard this line of argument before & frankly i anticipated your response. The burden of proof is on you to prove that the “roman” Catholic church is not the “catholic church”. Just for the record we refer to ourselves as the catholic church, “roman” is attributed to us by protestants to try & bolster the false argument you have presented.
    Irenaeus writes,

    Those who wish to see the truth can observe in every church the tradition of the Apostles made manifest in the whole world . . . therefore we refute those who hold unauthorized assemblies . . . by pointing to the greatest and oldest church, a church known to all men, which was founded and established at Rome by the most renowned apostles Peter and Paul . . . for this Church has the position of leadership and authority, and therefore every church, that is, the faithful everywhere must needs agree with the church at Rome for in her the apostolic tradition has ever been preserved by the faithful from all parts of the world. (Against Heresies, 3:3)

    Posted by JO | March 13, 2013, 2:18 AM
  12. kelly, you said: “whether through those in councils, or with the creeds, it really does not matter, it goes back to what does the Bible teach”

    The early Church, the Church of the Apostles that existed as one visible, organic, Church for the first 15 centuries, knew nothing of this sectarian madness, denominational confusion and conflicting private interpretations that are evident here between you & the “oneness pentacostals”. You insist that “it goes back to what does the bible teach” Did the early Christians believe in the doctrine of sola Scriptura? By no means! If you
    disagree, the burden of proof is on you, produce your evidence! For the first centuries
    there was no formalized New Testament, as we know it today. How did they survive, and
    in 300 short years conquer the whole Roman Empire? How could it be done without the King James Bible and good fundamentalist preachers pounding pulpits with the doctrines
    of sola Scriptura, the invisible Church, sola fide, and the other doctrines of recent
    development? Yes, the letters of Paul and the Gospels were well accepted and ubiquitous.
    But so were many other writings including the Didache and the Shepherd of Hermas and
    hundreds of others, many of which were considered Scripture for the first three centuries.
    A short study of our history shows the Apostolic Tradition and the Apostolic Succession
    was the basis for orthodoxy and obedience to the Gospel. To deny this is to be ignorant
    and deny history. These same men, the bishops of the Catholic Church (who
    Fundamentalists refer to as “early Christians” to avoid the reality that they were bishops),
    were the men who defined the doctrine of the Trinity (an extra-biblical word), the deity of
    our Lord Jesus Christ and the canon of Scripture!

    Posted by JO | March 13, 2013, 2:29 AM
  13. Hello Jo. I combined your split posts into one, to keep it together. Honestly there is much that could be examined from your posts, but I did ask you a question, which I would like some responses to.

    I asked: “If the Creeds stated that Jesus was Michael the arch angel, would you cling to it as being true? If the councils stated that Jesus was not raised from the dead in the flesh, but was raised in a ghost like form, would you cling to it?”

    How do you decide to accept or reject what your “Magisterium” teaches as truth? Do you have the choice to not accept what the “Magisterium” teaches as truth?

    In Acts 17:10-11 we read the following: “10 The brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. 11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so.”

    I thought I had posted this in my reply to you before concerning examining what we are taught to believe. Correct me if I am wrong, but does Acts 17:10-11 give us an example of testing what we have been taught with the Scriptures to make sure it is so? What would this be called?

    Paul taught in 1 Thessalonians 5 the following: “20 do not despise prophetic utterances. 21 But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good”

    Correct me if I am wrong, but does not Paul state here to examine every prophetic utterance carefully? How would they do this? How can a prophetic utterance be examined? Would not Acts 17:10-11 give some insights?

    Paul also taught in 2 Timothy 3 the following: “10 Now you followed my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith, patience, love, perseverance, 11 persecutions, and sufferings, such as happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium and at Lystra; what persecutions I endured, and out of them all the Lord rescued me! 12 Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. 13 But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them, 15 and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”

    I have highlighted some key areas, though really the whole context is clear. Can you explain how Paul viewed the “sacred writings”? How did Paul view the Scriptures for a person to have faith in Jesus? How did Paul view Scripture for teaching, reproof, and correction?

    If I am wrong, does not Paul seem to place an emphasis on Scripture for what is accepted as truth and what is to be rejected? Maybe you can explain how these verses are being misinterpreted and provide the accurate understandings.

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 13, 2013, 9:01 AM
  14. Hi Kelly, thanks for combining my previous post. Keyy you asked:

    ““If the Creeds stated that Jesus was Michael the arch angel, would you cling to it as being true? If the councils stated that Jesus was not raised from the dead in the flesh, but was raised in a ghost like form, would you cling to it?”

    Jesus assured the apostles and their successors, the popes and the bishops, “He who listens to you listens to me, and he who rejects you rejects me” (Luke 10:16). Jesus promised to guide his Church into all truth (John 16:12–13). We can have confidence that his Church teaches only the truth.I would refer you to 1Tim.3:15 “the church is the pillar & bulwark of the truth”. so in short no i would not belive a false creed but neither do i believe that the church will teach a false creed.

    Posted by JO | March 13, 2013, 11:56 AM
  15. Kelly, regarding Acts 17,10:11. This is only refering to the old testament & not the bible as we have it today and so it doesn’t really help the bible alone arguement since the Bereans did not have the fullness of revelation since they did not have the new testament. In any case, what we have here is the word of God communicated orally according to sacred apostolic tradition & the use of scripture. This is in keeping with the catholic
    position:likethe three legs on a stool, the Bible, Tradition, and the magisterium are all necessary for the stability of the Church and to guarantee sound doctrine. Prophetic utterances are examined yes by scripture but not scripture alone! They are examined by scripture, tradition & the the teaching of the magesterium.

    Posted by JO | March 13, 2013, 12:55 PM
  16. Kelly you said “Paul seem to place an emphasis on Scripture for what is accepted as truth and what is to be rejected” …yes he does, but not scripture alone! The Bible itself tells us to hold fast to Tradition, whether it comes to us in written or oral form (2 Thess. 2:15, 1 Cor. 11:2).
    All scripture is inspired by God & profitable for teaching, reproof & correction but there is nothing in this verse which implies that scripture alone is sufficient as the sole rule of faith. The fact is the Catholic church existed before the new testament & for four hundred years operated without the bible as we know it today.

    Posted by JO | March 13, 2013, 1:11 PM
  17. Hello Jo. You are welcome. You missed the point of my posts. I never stated emphatically Scripture alone, you stated that. What about Noah, Abraham, even Moses for a time, they all walked in faith in the Lord. What I have been sharing is the point of how do we come to a conclusion on something. I don’t reject tradition essentially, there are many things we can learn from that both in the Old and New Testament. In the end though, how do we come to a conclusion of what someone is stating is true or false?

    I asked this which you must of missed, “How do you decide to accept or reject what your “Magisterium” teaches as truth? Do you have the choice to not accept what the “Magisterium” teaches as truth?” This really is the heart of this discussion. Can you give a reply, your thoughts on how you do this?

    Jesus did speak in Luke 10:16 to his “disciples” that those whom listened to them was listening to Jesus and those whom rejected them was rejecting Jesus. But this does not talk about popes, bishops, or some organized church magisterium. Actually John 16:7-15 talks about the “Holy Spirit” being the One whom would teach all truth, not a church or magisterium. At what point was Peter teaching ‘all truth’? I can recall a couple places for sure that Peter was not teaching “all truth” and was corrected. (Acts 10, Galatians 2) I am not in any way saying Peter was teaching false stuff, just that at a time he was not leading in all truth those around him.

    What if you read at one point in the Catholic Church’s history that a council, a pope, magisterium taught something that was later changed? Which church authority would you accept as being the one whom was speaking in all truth?

    As to 1 Timothy 3:15, that text is awesome. The point of that passage is that the church, the body of Christ, born again Christians, are the ones whom give testimony to the world about the grace and truth of Jesus Christ, as verse verse 16 shows. Jesus Christ was God come in the flesh, sent from the Father, came and lived among us, taught, died, and rose again, and those whom are His followers are those whom give testimony to the world. If there are no Christians in the world, where is the testimony for Jesus Christ?

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 13, 2013, 3:29 PM
  18. Jo, you missed my point of Acts 17:10-11, I will share it again.

    “In Acts 17:10-11 we read the following: “10 The brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. 11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so.”

    I thought I had posted this in my reply to you before concerning examining what we are taught to believe. Correct me if I am wrong, but does Acts 17:10-11 give us an example of testing what we have been taught with the Scriptures to make sure it is so? What would this be called?”

    I stated, does this give us an example of testing what we have been taught, even if only using the Old Testament as you seem to believe this is referring to? What was Paul teaching them? If you read verses 1 up to 11 you will see the emphasis was on that Jesus was the Christ, the prophesied One to come. The thing is, they were listing to the apostle Paul, how cool is that? But they did not just say, hey Paul is right, he is an apostle, so let’s just believe what he said. No, they went to examine the Scriptures on what Paul was teaching, to see if it was right or wrong. So again, would this not give some indication that we can examine things for ourselves on what we are being told?

    Paul also would carry with him books of the Old Testament, parchments, scrolls, etc. Paul was a religious Jewish leader before come to follow Jesus Christ, having access to the Hebrew Scriptures. I would be of the view that Paul was sharing things first hand with them, I maybe wrong on that, but I would gather that would make much more Biblical sense than not. Also another point, as there are historians and scholars whom have given consensus’ that Matthew (40A.D.) and James (44A.D.)would of been written prior to the time of Acts 17, and in circulation for believers to be able to read, it is not a stretch to also view that people could read such things or at least know about them in some form. (not like a full version or a Bible)

    So back to the basic premise that I was asking. Is it possible that we learn from Acts 17:10-11 the lesson that we can test what we hear from whoever with the Scriptures for truth? And would it be possible that if the Scriptures demonstrate something contrary to what we are hearing that we would trust the Scriptures and reject whatever is in not lining up with the Scriptures. Is that a stretch?

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 13, 2013, 3:43 PM
  19. Jo, as mentioned before, the point I was making was missed.

    I posted:

    “Paul also taught in 2 Timothy 3 the following: “10 Now you followed my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith, patience, love, perseverance, 11 persecutions, and sufferings, such as happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium and at Lystra; what persecutions I endured, and out of them all the Lord rescued me! 12 Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. 13 But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them, 15 and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”

    I have highlighted some key areas, though really the whole context is clear. Can you explain how Paul viewed the “sacred writings”? How did Paul view the Scriptures for a person to have faith in Jesus? How did Paul view Scripture for teaching, reproof, and correction?

    If I am wrong, does not Paul seem to place an emphasis on Scripture for what is accepted as truth and what is to be rejected? Maybe you can explain how these verses are being misinterpreted and provide the accurate understandings.”

    My premise again, how important are the Scriptures for truth? Let me ask it another way. Lets say Peter (an example/ hypothetical) taught that for a person to be saved they had to keep the Law of Moses along with following Jesus? There was a tradition among some of the people that people were to keep the Law of Moses along with following Jesus. (Galatians 1-3) How do we come to a conclusion if what he is teaching is to true or false? Do the Scriptures give us any answers?

    As to the Catholic Church existing before the New Testament or the Bible as we know it today, so? Of course the church, the body of Christ, born again Christians, were before any written letters, that proves nothing. Also, in the first 3 centuries you have the Church Fathers all giving references to the New Testament as being the Word of God, prior to any council. In fact we had the Old Testament 150 years before Christ, in Hebrew and Greek, what does that prove? Simply the Word of God was there, and it was before any councils.

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 13, 2013, 3:59 PM
  20. Jo, on a side note. I have something I came across, and for the sake of having to post this and that, I wanted to share the link for your consideration to take a look at. Now it is not a Catholic site, and I am not giving it for you to read all the things there, nor am I giving complete endorsement to the site. But it has references to various things of the “Catholic Church’s” history concerning the reading of the Bible for normal folks and for those in authority. I found it very intriguing since you mentioned that the church only teaches truth in one of your posts, so this got me thinking.

    Do you believe in the last 2000 years of which you believe the “Catholic Church” as you know has taught all truth and no errors? Is that your view? I have been reading various things on divisions within the “Catholic Church” as you know with popes, councils, etc, and I am not sure they have always been going the same direction for what they believe to be true.

    Here is a link that gives references to the “Catholic Church” as you know it talking about how the bible was accepted to be read by laity, later on denied, and later on accepted. link Bible possession once banned by the Catholic Church I have checked various references so far, each of them have been accurate. I would be curious if you would read through this, see some how the “Catholic Church” as you know it has dealt differently with people pertaining to the reading and understanding of the Bible.

    If you choose not to, that is fine, just wanted to give your thoughts, if you had any.

    Kelly

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 13, 2013, 4:08 PM
  21. Hi Kelly, thank you for your response. You have given me a lot to respond to so i will do my best to answer all your questions. You asked: “How do you decide to accept or reject what your “Magisterium” teaches as truth? Do you have the choice to not accept what the “Magisterium” teaches as truth?”
    In my previous point i said; “Jesus assured the apostles and their successors, the popes and the bishops, “He who listens to you listens to me, and he who rejects you rejects me” (Luke 10:16). Jesus promised to guide his Church into all truth (John 16:12–13). So in short to reject the teaching of the mageterium is to reject Christ.

    Posted by JO | March 14, 2013, 2:37 AM
  22. Kelly, as a further response to your 1st question;

    believers are to submit to Church authority, “Remember your leaders who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teachings…obey your leaders and defer to them, for they keep watch over you and will have to give an account, that they may fulfill their task with joy and not with sorrow, for that would be of no advantage to you” (Hebrews 13:7-9, 17). The word “leader” is translated from the Greek word hegeomai (ἡγέομαι) and means to lead with official authority. Similarly, in 1 Peter 5:5 we read, “Likewise, you younger members, be subject to the presbyters.”

    Posted by JO | March 14, 2013, 2:58 AM
  23. Kelly, you made the comment ” but this does not talk about popes or some organised church magesterium” I believe my second response to your 1st question contradicts your statement some what.The function of the Church’s hierarchy is clearly shown in Scripture. Consider the following:

    Peter and the council of Jerusalem, over which he presided, taught by the power of the Holy Spirit: “It is the decision of the Holy Spirit and of us not to place on you any burden beyond these necessities…” (Acts 15:28).

    All of the Churches were to abide by the decision: “As they (Paul and Timothy) traveled from city to city, they handed on to the people for observance the decision reached by the Apostles and presbyters in Jerusalem” (Acts 16:4).

    Bishops were in authority over congregations: “For this reason I left you in Crete so that you might set right what remains to be done and appoint presbyters in every town, as I directed you” (Titus 1:5). The office of bishop is spoken of eight times in the New Testament. The Greek words used are episcopos (ἐπίσκοπος), which means a superintendent or overseer, someone who visits, and episskope (ἐπισκοπή), which just refers to the office.

    Presbyters were reminded of their responsibilities: “From Miletus he had the presbyters of the Church at Ephesus summoned. ‘Keep watch over yourselves and over the whole flock, of which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers, in which you tend the Church of God that He acquired with His own blood. I know that after my departure savage wolves will come among you, and they will not spare the flock. And from your own group, men will come forward perverting the truth to draw the disciples away after them'” (Acts 20:17, 28-30). How do you suppose those deceivers will appear? “Even Satan masquerades as an angel of light. So it is not strange that his ministers also masquerade as ministers of righteousness” (2 Corinthians 11:14-15). That is why John says, “We belong to God, and anyone who knows God listens to us, while anyone who does not belong to God refuses to hear us. This is how we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of deceit” (1 John 4:6). This is a reflection of Jesus’ own words, “Whoever listens to you listens to Me. Whoever rejects you rejects me” (Luke 10:16), and “If he refuses even to listen to the Church, then treat him as you would a gentile or a tax collector” (Matthew 18:17).

    Posted by JO | March 14, 2013, 3:10 AM
  24. Kelly, you asked ” at what point was peter teaching all truth?” & you made reference to the fact that he was corrected (acts10,galatians 2)…. Clearly Peter was teaching all truth beginning from pentecost when the Holy Spirit descended upon him & the apostles, as to his having been corrected, this was in relation to his behaviour (showing favouritism to circumsised jews) & nothing to do with his teaching & so i dont really see the relevance of this question.

    As to 1Tim 3:15 “the church is the pillar & bullwark of the truth” i found your explanation to be very general. So general in fact that any 1 of the 30 odd thousand protestant denominations who all claim to be guided by the Holy spirit & followers of Christ could lay claim to being the ones who give testimony to the world about Christ! Even those who deny the Trinity! The real meaning of 1Tim 3:15 is that Christ established a visible church through whom God communicates hHis truth!

    Posted by JO | March 14, 2013, 3:58 AM
  25. Kelly, you said ” I never stated emphatically Scripture alone….” & “I don’t reject tradition essentially” i don’t say this to offend you but you are starting to sound a little catholic here! I’m curious to know which traditions you value. In any case, though you may not have stated “emphatically” scripture alone it sure seems like that’s what you mean:

    “So back to the basic premise that I was asking. Is it possible that we learn from Acts 17:10-11 the lesson that we can test what we hear from whoever with the Scriptures for truth? And would it be possible that if the Scriptures demonstrate something contrary to what we are hearing that we would trust the Scriptures and reject whatever is in not lining up with the Scriptures. Is that a stretch?

    “My premise again, how important are the Scriptures for truth? Let me ask it another way. Lets say Peter (an example/ hypothetical) taught that for a person to be saved they had to keep the Law of Moses along with following Jesus? There was a tradition among some of the people that people were to keep the Law of Moses along with following Jesus. (Galatians 1-3) How do we come to a conclusion if what he is teaching is to true or false? Do the Scriptures give us any answers?

    To answer these questions i would like to take you back to 2 Timothy 3:16: “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”

    Note that this passage nowhere says that Scripture is the sole rule of faith. It says that it is profitable, and that is true. But that doesn’t make it the sole rule of faith. It says that it can make you complete, and that is also true. However, in order for Scripture to make us complete, we must accept all that it teaches. And Scripture teaches that Christ established an authoritative church. That is why Paul tells Titus, who headed the church at Crete, to “Exhort and reprove with all authority. Let no one disregard you” (Titus 2:15). Indeed an authoritative church is necessary in light of 2 Peter 1:20: “You must understand this, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation.” So Scripture makes us complete by showing us that we need it and that we need the Church to teach us what it means. Only a church whose teachings are authoritative and unchanging can qualify as “The Church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth” (1 Timothy 3:15).
    Correct me if I’m wrong but i believe this is at the heart of our discussion. You believe in the private interpretation of scripture which clearly contradicts the scripture i just quoted above & i believe that Christ established a church (St.Matt.16,18)to guide us in all truth including the truth of what scripture means.

    Posted by JO | March 14, 2013, 5:00 AM
  26. Kelly, i know you don’t accept that the catholic church is the Catholic church established by christ but you haven’t provided any proof as requested in my post on March 13th to show that it isn’t! I ahve yet to get around to reading the link you have referred me to, i will do as soon as i can.

    Posted by JO | March 14, 2013, 5:30 AM
  27. Hello Jo. One thing I want to say, is though we are not on the same page on how we are viewing the Scriptures, I believe we have both shown each other respect in our discussions. I wanted to say that, and share my appreciation in that. I want to speak openly and honestly for a moment concerning myself. I am turning 42 shortly, have been a born again Christian since the age of 7, been involved with Christian Apologetics since 1991/1992 time frame, been involved in many venues for teaching, witnessing, outreaches, preaching, and serving. One of the things I have learned over the years is thought process or perspectives don’t change over night, they take time. Our discussion is nothing new, been a discussion for many upon many centuries, and honestly will continue until the Lord Jesus returns one day and sets up His kingdom (Matthew 24/ Revelation 19) upon this earth.

    Personally I have been able to be a part of the process to see Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, Atheists, Catholics, Muslims, come to a saving knowledge and relationship with Jesus Christ, very humbling and honored. Many of those were in things for 20, 30, 40 years, and I just wanted to share the grace and truth of Jesus Christ with them, and prayed for them. I am no superhero, just a man who loves the Lord Jesus, and wants to share the good news of His grace that anyone can be set free from their sins by trusting solely in the atonement and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Thats what I am about.

    I realize that you believe truly that you are in the truth, being of the Roman Catholic Church, and I will respect that. I will continue to dialogue with you, show respect, and be a person sharing the good news of Jesus Christ. We have had many posts going back and forth, and sometimes we can get lost in all of that with posting lots of stuff and missing the dialogue. For me it’s not about who can post the most, but trying to keep it simple and consistent. I hope you can relate.

    One thing you mentioned: “Indeed an authoritative church is necessary in light of 2 Peter 1:20: “You must understand this, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation.” So Scripture makes us complete by showing us that we need it and that we need the Church to teach us what it means. Only a church whose teachings are authoritative and unchanging can qualify as “The Church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth” (1 Timothy 3:15).
    Correct me if I’m wrong but i believe this is at the heart of our discussion. You believe in the private interpretation of scripture which clearly contradicts the scripture i just quoted above & i believe that Christ established a church (St.Matt.16,18)to guide us in all truth including the truth of what scripture means.”

    Here is the fuller text of that passage: 16 For we did not follow cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For he received from God the Father honor and glory, when there was borne such a voice to him by the Majestic Glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased: 18 and this voice we ourselves heard borne out of heaven, when we were with him in the holy mount. 19 And we have the word of prophecy made more sure; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day-star arise in your hearts: 20 knowing this first, that no prophecy of scripture is of private interpretation. 21 For no prophecy ever came by the will of man: but men spake from God, being moved by the Holy Spirit.

    This passage is not talking about individual beliefs a person may have on a Scripture. It is not talking about this guy believes this and that believes that kind of deal, or that such an organization believes this. It is dealing with the prophecy of Jesus’ coming, being the Messiah spoken of from the Old Testament coming to pass. And Peter is stating, this is not some fable, they were eyewitnesses of this, they heard the Father’s voice from heaven, thus showing that this was no private matter but now is known and to be made known to the world. Prophecy from God to man is not private, it is to be known, declared, and thus Peter was affirming that this event, the coming of Jesus as the Messiah, the Christ, was no private matter.

    Jo, a side note. Do you know much about Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons? I do, and one of things I have learned over the years is they are very consistent in what they teach their members and what their members believe, under their own “Magisterium” authorities. In fact, from my own experiences and looking into, they are more in line with how they submit in their views pertaining to leaders and understanding the Scriptures than Catholics. Before you get the wrong thought, what I mean is that they are almost like robots at times with how they think, what they do, and how they share their views. When you think about it, that can be a bit scary if they cannot think for themselves, so to speak. God’s Word teaches us to follow leaders, yes, prophets, apostles, pastors, elders, etc. But we are not without choices, we are not to not have a brain and think for ourselves, and that was one of the things I have been sharing in my posts. I hope that makes sense in what I am sharing here.

    One more thought concerning 2 Peter 1 and those whom he was writing to. There were movements at that time then that would of had private interpretations of prophecy concerning Jesus, for example the Gnostics. They believed in special elite knowledge that supposedly received from God that others did not, and they were superior in their attitudes, and they were a small group that wanted to keep things to themselves. Point being, what Peter wrote dealt with their testimony of being first hand witnesses of Jesus, hearing the Father, and affirming that the prophecy of Jesus’ coming has come, thus it is no longer a mystery or private, but now to be known and declared.

    I realize that there are commentators out there that have differing views, which I presume you even know, and you have your own views. I do my best to go with the verses before it and after, to have the context to be plain and simple. Now to address your statement, “You believe in the private interpretation of scripture which clearly contradicts the scripture I just quoted above”. You are referring to 1 Timothy 3:15 which as I shared in context does not have the meaning that you implore into it. With that being said, how I view Scripture is not a private matter, I take very seriously the Word of God from Genesis to Revelation, and try my best to be consistent and accurate in how I perceive them, seeking wisdom from the Lord to grow in grace and truth. I follow the apostles and prophets teachings, the Word, as Scripture gives guidance to. (Acts 2:42/ Phil.3:7-14)

    Jo, I have shared my thoughts with you, though you will have some differing views, I hope you can at least have a better understanding of who I am. I believe we have both shared our thoughts and I am sure you will share more at times, whether here or another post, and that is welcomed. It’s not about who can put up the most posts, which to me is not the point of these posts, but about having a reasonable dialogue, which we have had so far.

    Kelly

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 14, 2013, 12:41 PM
  28. Hi Kelly, I also appreciate the respect & courtesy you have shown me, and though we are not on the same page I want you to know that I still consider you a brother in Christ & that I will pray for you & hope that you pray for me.
    I would agree with you that our discussion is nothing new. What I have found in my dealings with non catholic christians, muslims, jehovah witness, Mormons etc is that we all have one thing in common, & that is we all filter things according to the traditions we have become accustomed to. The muslim clings to his koran,the mormon to the book of mormon, the protestant to sola scriptura & sola fide & the catholic to the sacred apostolic traditions , the bible & the church magesterium….son on & so forth, & yes I agree these perspectives don’t change overnight. God’s Grace & an honest search for truth are needed to guide us through the mine field of competing revelations & doctrines.Indeed it is the reason why I am a catholic & cannot in good conscience be anything else. I thank you for respecting that.

    when I said “You believe in the private interpretation of scripture which clearly contradicts the scripture I just quoted above”.I was not referring to 1Tim3:15, I was referring to 2 Peter 1:20: “You must understand this, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation.” I don’t know how you get from this that the verse is saying prophecy is not a private matter! To me it is clearly condeming the private interpretation of scripture. In any case the fact that we need a church to teach us what scripture means is obvious :
    The book of Ephesians addresses 2 Timothy and 1 John beautifully, “And his gifts were that some should be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, for the equipment of the saints…so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine” (4:11-12, 14). Remember earlier in 2 Timothy, we found the phrase, (concerning Scripture) “that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” First Paul tells us that we need Scripture to be equipped, then he tells us that we need teachers to be equipped. Is there a contradiction here? Not at all as Scripture without the proper interpretation is of no value. That is why the Ethiopian Eunuch, despite his genuine desire for God, needed Philip to explain the Scriptures to him (Acts 8:26-40). Note that it was God who sent Philip to the eunuch. Why do you suppose He did that?

    Any way kelly it has been a good discussion & once again thank you for being a good host. God bless you & happy birthday.

    Posted by JO | March 14, 2013, 8:01 PM
  29. Wow Mr. Powers,
    was all of that really necessary? I can not imagine that you would quit listening to some of the greatest worship music ever recorded because of this. I like the Gaither Vocal arrangements but I don’t agree with their doctrine. But it does not keep me from allowing The Lord to minister to me thru the music and lyrics. I mean I understand your thoughts but this is not music that promotes wickedness and darkness now does it. I can almost ascertain from your writings that you personally have never spoken in tongues. I could be wrong but I bet I am not. The wind blows where it listeth, you canst not tell whence it cometh or wither it goeth but you hear the sound thereof. So is EVERYONE born of the Spirit. You can not leave the book of Acts and really belong to the churches of the New Testament (letters) without being born again of water and of the Spirit. You must be born again. You must. John the Baptist had followers that were called Believers in Acts 19 yet there was something more for them. When approached by the Apostle Paul they did not argue with him they simply deduced that if there was something more they wanted it. Why don’t you begin to pray God if this is for me than I want it. You must pass thru the book of Acts and have a scriptural experience that validates not that I have accepted Christ, but that he has accepted me.

    Posted by Michael | September 23, 2013, 9:20 PM
  30. You are just plain ignorant and know nothing about Bible theology. Why would you even get on here and try to Phillips Craig and Dean down for their faith? Who are you to judge for one, and for two you are totally ignorant of the teachings of the Bible. Before you put others down and even try to argue something how about you get educated on the topic first….funny thing is that you may actually have to open your Bible and read and you don’t seem like a person who does that because you obviously have no clue what the Word says…….SMH Be born again. Just like Jesus left us His perfect example and Peter preached it on the day of Pentecost . Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the NAME of Jesus Christ and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost…….the Apostles preached Jesus Christ and His perfect example. Not your retarded Trinitarian doctrine that doesn’t even make sense and isn’t biblical in anyway shape or form.

    Posted by Tricia | October 24, 2013, 9:33 AM
  31. Kelly,
    Thanks for going to such great lengths to try to get an answer. My heart aches for people like Tricia and Michael who are being “tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine.” This same vitriol has been directed at John MacArthur and the people involved in the Strange Fire conference about a month ago. It is dangerous to shoot sacred cows. Just ask Gideon! Dave Swavely wrote a book called “Decisions, Decisions: How and how not to make them.” And he systematically exposes the dangers of false doctrines. What we believe matters. What we truly believe determines our choices that we make. Therefore, if we start from false doctrine, we will not make choices that are pleasing and acceptable to God. Hebrews 11:6 says that without faith it is impossible to please God. The faith spoken of there is ONLY true faith, not false faith — not a faith in a non-trinitarian God. If you do not have faith in Jesus Christ alone – the 2nd person of the trinity, the substitutionary atonement, the 100% God/100% Man -two natures in One person, if this is not the Jesus you are trusting for your righteousness before God, you CANNOT please God. This is why doctrines matter. This is why PCD must not have a place within our churches. They promote a heretical doctrine under the guise that they are really no different (But Tricia clearly shows that they do have a radically different view!)

    Anyway, as a Preacher I started preaching and this isn’t the place. Just wanted to thank you for the post. And if you could post an update, it would be greatly appreciated.

    Posted by Rev. Brent | November 21, 2013, 8:13 AM
  32. Thank you very much for taking the time to share your comments and I am blessed that you were encouraged by what I researched and shared.

    Kelly

    Posted by Kelly Powers | November 25, 2013, 11:50 PM
  33. This is amazing! We tear other believers down if their Theology is different than ours! Not exactly the way Christ intended us to behave. While I do not carry the beliefs of PCD I do applaud their Love for Christ. I have not found any critical error in the songs they sing.
    Their music demonstrates an enormous Love for God. I am blessed each time I listen..

    This from a Baptist.
    I wonder why you are not attacking Calvinism, Armenianism, Lutherans, Methodists of both Calv. and Armen. or Baptist Armen, Calv. with the same furver?
    Pardon the spelling I got lazy.

    God Bless all!

    Posted by David | March 26, 2014, 8:28 PM
  34. Hello David,

    I would encourage you to read before you write for future reference. You will notice at our site I have sections addressing Calvinism, Arminianism, Mid Acts, Word Faith, which each has certain areas of agreement within Christianity and certain major differences of concern. I would also like to say would you applaud Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Muslims, on their zeal and love for God? Each of those movements all claim to be true followers of God or Jesus in some way, would you applaud them and be blessed by them as well?

    What I have addressed concerning PCD is both a public matter and theological matter. I went to them first asking many questions over a long period of time, and in the end I addressed what was shared and how they are of the UPCI/Oneness affiliation, which is heretical. That view has another gospel message, and they have another version of God, plain and simple. I did not intentionally go out of my way to trash them, to just write pitter patter stuff. What I presented and shared was from my heart to properly inform people so they were aware, as many are not.

    If you truly believe it is ok for people who claim to follow the Lord and teach another gospel message, that this is acceptable to Jesus and what the Bible teaches, then you will be held accountable and quite frankly you may not truly be in Christ. The Bible is very clear on being informed and opposed to those who teach false gospels, this is not hidden. So with this being said, I hope you seriously take the time to think these things through and do better reading in the future of how you critique peoples views.

    Kelly

    Posted by Kelly Powers | March 29, 2014, 12:25 AM
  35. You can call the truth about God being one and only one awful all you want. Scripture shows that God is only one and not three as this belief came much later, cir 300 ad. God is One and not three. You can be a mother, a daughter and a wife but you are not three people you are the same person but you have three different roles to fill. That is God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost as God is a spirit and can do all things. This is the heart of the issue as some can not accept that God can be all of these at the same time and still be God.

    Posted by Stephen Baker | May 2, 2014, 11:25 AM
  36. God is one, similar to how I am one. Genesis 1:26 – “God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:”

    Most Oneness believers teach that Jesus is the Father, Jesus is the Son, and Jesus is the Holy Spirit. They believe that God is one, and His name is Jesus.

    That’s like saying that my body is my soul, my body is my spirit, and my soul is my spirit. I am one, but my body is not my soul, my body is not my spirit, and my soul is not my spirit. I don’t fully understand how my body, soul, and spirit interact, inter-relate, and where the one starts and the other one stops; but that doesn’t mean they are completely without distinction.

    I am one, and yet three; and so is God.

    Check out the testimony of a man from India who was taken to heaven and personally interacted with the Godhead.

    http://bit.ly/InsightIntoHeaven

    Posted by Jesse | July 29, 2014, 2:30 PM

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