All scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that every man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. -- 2Timothy 3: 16-17 (ESV)
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1: 14 (ESV)
Mega church heretic Andy Stanley is at it again. Some may balk at referring to him as such but the record is there for people to examine and if they keep paying attention it will become crystal clear that he is the hireling the Bible warns us about. This month Andy gave a sermon series entitled "Who Needs God." Part two of this series deals with his attempt to completely undermine Scripture as being inerrant and infallible. It is a breathtaking display of humanism run amok and worse yet, he uses our kids as the reason why we should not hinge our faith upon the Word of God. In doing some research on the matter, this is not actually the first time he has offered such a notion and while I may eventually do an entire sermon review, we should start at the beginning and that was in 2013 during an interview Stanley gave where he first presented these ideas. Before we get there however it is important to realize how heretical Andy Stanley has been even without this recent nonsense. He has publicly given up on the biblical instruction to shepherd God's people, which is the only role for a pastor:
(When asked about Pastors being called shepherd) -- "That word needs to go away. It was culturally relevant in the time of Jesus, but it's not culturally relevant anymore." -- Andy Stanley -- Leadership Journal, May 2006
So to the man that has one of the largest churches in America, the Bible means so little as to change what it teaches based upon cultural whims. More importantly, the primary role that God has given to pastors, Stanley thinks is obsolete. This is not terribly surprising since he is an acolyte of Rick Warren and the Purpose Driven Church. The sheep have become customers to people like Andy Stanley instead of belonging to the Lord and in desperate need of shepherding. Just last year Andy had to apologize for some public sheep-beating when he chastised those who attended small churches as being "so freaking selfish." It is all about the business model for the hireling remember. Stanley has not only embraced the humanistic and carnal purpose driven model but he has injected it with steroids:
"Your church is a great church because it is led well, not because your folks are praying and waiting for revival." -- Andy Stanley - June 2014 Tweet
Did you get that beloved? A great church is great not because of the sufficiency of God but rather the leadership of man. It matters not who is standing in the gap praying for the church -- it is all about the CEO-Pastor-Dude standing in the pulpit; casting vision and not shepherding the sheep. Just this year Stanley showed his irreverence for God by incorporating 1990's Boy-Band songs during worship including the sexual innuendo lyrics indicating that your girl has "got the right stuff baby; Love the way you turn me on." As if this was not enough, a few weeks later he had devoted much of "worship" time to the British Invasion and had his band do a set of Beatles songs. I say this all as the backdrop to the 2013 interview given by Stanley, in which he displayed that he has walked even farther away from orthodox beliefs and is now firmly living in the humanistic world of modern day Sodom. In the clip, Stanley starts out by claiming we have done previous generations, especially children and high school students, a terrible disservice by the way we speak about the Bible. He recounts a tale about being in a college class where the teacher went through several different religions and their "creation myths" including of course Adam and Eve from the Bible. His assertion is this teaching unwittingly destroyed every Christian's faith because it was "a house of cards." Because of this he concludes:
"The foundation of our faith is not Scripture, not the infallibility of the Bible. The foundation of our faith is something that happened in history and the issue is always -- who is Jesus? The Scriptures are simply a collection of ancient documents that tell us that story." -- Andy Stanley
For me it is not that surprising when someone as heretical and unbiblical as Andy Stanley seemingly abandons the Holy Scriptures. But it is frightening because so many people follow him. So many Christians are being led by a man who has admitted to not wanting to shepherd them and who now is on record as saying that the Bible is just a collection of ancient documents. No Andy it is not. Let's deal first with the pitiful example he provides. It is true that many kids go off to college and can have their faith easily destroyed. The cause of this phenomenon however is not that belief in Christ in general is a house of cards but that they based what they believe on reason instead of faith. For the person who is firmly rooted in faith there is nothing an unsaved college professor can say to change what we already know. The things of God are foolishness to them! Of course to them everything is a myth! Faith knows better however. But if your beliefs are simply based upon reason then reason can undo them very easily indeed.
So it is absurd and mind boggling that someone claiming to be a pastor thinks it is doing a disservice to explain to people that the Bible is infallible. That we ought to look at them as just a collection of ancient documents. Perhaps Andy has forgotten the power of Scripture when his house of cards fell but let us start with the first set of key verses above. The Scriptures are profitable. They present gain for the reader. In what areas? For teaching, reproving, correcting, and training in righteousness. You name it Andy and the Bible provides profit. Perhaps the most important portion of these verses is the fact that all Scripture is literally breathed out by God Himself! The Creator of the entire universe has written the Scriptures and Andy Stanley thinks they are just a collection of stuff. This is what happens when you turn the church into a business and replace the supernatural truths of God with the carnal business plans and marketing schemes of man. Human wisdom starts taking over. The Bible is divinely inspired by God. It is not merely a road sign pointing you to the person of Jesus. It is Jesus! It is stunningly ironic and sad that Andy thinks the issue is always -- who is Jesus -- yet he forgets that Jesus is the Word, confirmed in our second key verse. Jesus is the Logos Word. The Word made flesh. He completely embodies His Word and His Word embodies Him. You cannot separate the two unless you are trying to be disobedient to one or both. Jesus Himself reflected constantly to the Scriptures as the answer to everything:
He answered, "Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, 'Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'?- Matthew 19: 4-5 (ESV)
This is Jesus in direct response to the Pharisees trying to trap Him. Have you not read? When tempted for forty days what was the response of Jesus to every temptation laid out before Him? It is written. Think about that:
Have you not read?
It is written.
The foundation of our faith is not Scripture, not the infallibility of the Bible.
One of these is not like the other beloved. What is Andy Stanley actually railing against here? Faith in the Word of God. What is the one area Satan always attacks first? The infallibility of Scripture. Why? Because if he can get you to doubt any one portion of Scripture as being questionable then the rest easily falls away. Stanley actually turns faith into the house of cards he complained about by removing the infallibility of Scripture from the conversation. Not content with the damage he has wrought so far, Stanley continues to elaborate: