Fundy Tweet of the Week: Preaching Your Head Off

I know he’s probably intending a quotation of Timothy 4:2 but I do love the rich irony of putting “preach the word” in quotes. I have no doubt that they will “preach the word” with “biblical exegesis” and “careful use of logic” and a “real sense of humility.”

167 thoughts on “Fundy Tweet of the Week: Preaching Your Head Off”

    1. “”I’m glad revival is not some strange phenomenon; Revival is a scriptural promise! …
      …We can have revival now!”
      -Evangelist Justin Cooper
      Pslam 85:6″

      I’m not sure if it’s funnier that he quoted himself, or that he misspelled Psalms on his front page.

      1. Another fundy self-parody… This sight is ALMOST superfluous, they take care of the satire themselves.

        And what is with the 4-point pocket squares!?! My previous fundy pastor actually said that the men had to go on visitation on Saturday’s in a suit and preferred a 4 point pocket square because it made us “look like Christians.” πŸ™„

        1. A pocket square makes you look like a Christian? Maybe an old-fashioned Mafia don.

          What does the Bible say a Christian will look like? The fruit of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control. No mention of handkerchiefs or even suit coats there at all.

        2. Agreed. I was rebellious and wore a Polo or went open collar. No way was I going out in July in MD and knock on doors in a suit and tie!

        3. I was brought up the same way: going out on visitation with a suit and tie. It took 80+ degree heat to teach me that people can take you seriously (and even get saved!) if you simply dress nicely and treat them courteously!

      1. It’s not unusual to put your belief in the Scriptures first in a doctrinal statement, since everything that follows is based on them. That said, including the KJV statement is, in and of itself, Scripturally indefensible.

        1. This is true. Including the 5 solas, scriptura is the first one due to the specific revelation/revealed knowledge all of God’s interaction with humanity is through the scripture.

        2. Dear Neil:

          You raise what I believe to be an issue of some importance.

          The question of starting point matters hugely for the way in which formulate and hold our undoubted Christian faith.

          The thing about starting with a book is that the great question then becomes, ‘what does it say.’

          In addition to Bible-pounding, this tradition bends toward …

          Law! Law! Law!
          Duty! Duty! Duty!
          Works! Works! Works!

          Ever wondered why you go months with grace being rendered naught but lip service?

          Suppose we begin not with a book but a person we call ‘God.’ Or to be more specific, a community of three persons!

          Now the great question becomes, ‘who is God,’ which is followed by ‘what is God like’ and ‘how can I know him.’

          To be sure, we do [as you note] go to the Bible for our answers. But because we begin not with a book but with a person, what follows bends toward

          Grace! Grace! Grace!
          Spirit! Spirit! Spirit!
          Life! Life! Life!

          See the difference?

          Christian Socialist

        3. Thank you, Christian Socialist! Very well put indeed.

          A fundamentalist friend once told me that God puts His Word above His Name. (This fellow quoted some OT Bible verse to that effect; I can’t remember which one.)

          I responded, “How do you know that means His written Word? Couldn’t it refer to Jesus the Incarnate Word?”

          I mean, seriously. I was shocked and taken aback by this guy’s statement that the Bible is above the very Name of God. Is this a common belief in fundyism? It was new to me, and it sounded way, way off.

    2. Using my IFB Secret De-coder ring I have deciphered, β€œOh Lord revive they work…”
      When that phrase is put in to the decoder it actually means: “Hey lord bless my efforts and my handiwork. Give me credit for all the souls that I have brought into fold and saved. Now, increase and bless me with love offerings so that I can share the glory with you and reap the bounty of all my labors.”

    3. Yay! Another self-promoting preacher! Let’s take a look at his website:

      Upon logging onto the website named after the preacher, we are treated to at least two pics of the not-quite famous (or even moderately known) evangelist. If these two pics are not enough, feel free to go to the Photo Gallery for several more pics of…wait for it…the evangelist! Continuing forth, we find a quote from several preachers recommending this evangelist (including a quote from the evangelist himself)!

      If you want to find out about the evangelist, you can click the “About” button, and the “News and Events” button, and the “Follow” button, and the “Itinerary” button and the, well, you get the idea.

      In addition, for an extra blessing, click on the “Links” button to go to the three places that have allowed this man to preach (they also recommend him)!

      Did we mention that this website is about Evangelist Justin Cooper?!? πŸ™„

    1. Oddly enough his about page doesn’t say, although it does say “…while reading his mother’s King James Bible and a tract written by John R. Rice, the Holy Spirit spoke to Evangelist Cooper’s heart and showed him his need of a Saviour…”

    2. Not only is his doctorate honorary, his bachelor’s degree is, too.

      (Which isn’t to say that people without higher education are incapable of coherent speech, the ability to use a dictionary, rational thought, or decent exegesis: lots of smart people are wandering around with nothing more than a public-school diploma, myself included. Some of them even use their intellect to teach and preach the things of God. But to pass oneself off as a learned expert on theology and the scriptures at age, what, 30, aided and abetted by a Fundie “institute of higher learning”? One or both of these holds integrity and education in very low esteem…)

    3. Bio says he got his DDiv from Tom & Greg Neal at Berean Baptist College of Fleming Island, FL of recent SFL infamy.

      This apparent Immaculate Conferment happened after what must have been 3 years of grueling academic work in the non-existent (according to BBC’s website) doctoral program, while Evangelist & Mrs. Cooper were literally traveling literally across the nation to “conduct revival meetings in many churches [literally] across the country”.

      My guess at 3 years of [literally grueling] work is based on the length of the intervening period since the “award”ing of his second bachelor’s degree from Midwestern Baptist College in Orion, MI.

      Just wondering why he picked the DDiv from Berean that doesn’t have published Doctoral program (yet appears to confer more Dr degrees than Bachelor’s) over continuing his [literally grueling] study at Midwestern? Could it be because Midwestern requires a 36 hour/75pg thesis Masters AND a further 64 hours/150pg “Discertation [sic]” to get the doctorate? Surely it was a question of school prestige because surely the academic requirements are similar, right? 😯

    1. I actually heard the post in his voice.

      John the Baptist of course was not “hygienic”, he probably didn’t “wipe properly”, he wasn’t “camera friendly”, he didn’t “own a toothbrush”..he also didn’t “pee in the potty”, he wasn’t “clean”, didn’t “fit the mold”

      All reasons why John would not be welcomed in fundy circles, as “wearing a hair shirt” and “wearing a beard like those dirty hippies” would overcome his truthful preaching of the Word. Those things would be seen as not “giving his best to God” and he would be “showing disrespect” because he didn’t dress “like he would to see the president.”

  1. Reading through his doctrinal statement I was struck by the fact that a) with the exception of a few secondary statements, we are in agreement… Yet, b) I’d not be joined in Christian fellowship because I do not choose to speak like a 17th Century Englishman?

    That and “psalm” looks suspiciously lke “islam” 😯

    1. Not only would they not join with you in fellowship, but they would preach against you as one of “those Christians” who don’t use the real Word of God.

      πŸ™

      1. He is indeed. We had both Cooper and Hamblin visit my former church. Cooper came at Hamblin’s recommendation (Hamblin had visited a few times before Cooper came). I don’t like either of them as preachers.

  2. One of the “stirring quotes” from his websites;

    “The church sits idly by and takes the things of God very lightly, while America is literally having its heart eaten out.”

    Literally, mind.
    America has a literal heart, that is actually been consumed via the mouth(s) and into the digestive system(s) of one or more biological forms. Literally.

      1. That abuse makes me furious.
        “Literally” is a useful word. We need it.
        People kill it by using it to mean the exact opposite of “literally.”

        “We literally need to take the bull by the horns.” Oh, really?

        “I have literally worked my butt off.” Shouldn’t you be in the hospital, then?

        1. So, PW, should be book you for the room with rubber walls and the clothing that lets you hug yourself all day long?

          πŸ™‚

        2. PW: you’re okay! It’s the singular misusing that drives you crazy, not the plural people. I say “drives” is correct.

  3. Here’s something else I don’t understand – the whole “Dr.” thing. On the one hand it is consistent with their warped beliefs that only their schools are legit… so I Understand why the don’t get doctorates from accredited “worldly” schools. But then passing out the same titles amongst themselves, to show credibility and learn’n, is playing the same game as “the world” – thus, “worldly.”

    1. Part of the Baptist tradition was the dislike of a church hierarchy with elders, bishops, cardinals, etc…
      But men with big egos who believe they have been chosen by god to lead other people, still seek titles to drawn attention their own self importance, therefore the need be call a β€œdoctor”.

      1. IIRC, he has only been using “Dr.” in front of his name for about a year or so. He wasn’t a “Dr.” when he visited our church just a couple years ago.

      1. He also hasn’t figure out how to make the flahsings around the edge of his picture-link-icons the same colour as his page background.

        The white borders of the icons he’s stolen from a google search are a visual disgrace.

        1. @Becky–I don’t remember where I saw this, but images reminded me.

          A guy stole an ancient Canaanite idol recently from a museum. He was caught when he tried to fence it. His Baal was set at $50,000.

        2. @Uncle Wilver- Yes, I read about that crime. It was later complicated by a 5 year-old “psychic”, who had a vision of the statue, stole it from the courtroom, and ran away with it. The headline read; “Small Medium at Large”.

  4. Here’s another gem, complete with a theological/social conundrum;

    “Will you please join with us in praying earnestly, fervently, and directly for revival? God is more than able to provide revival if we prepare for revival” -Evangelist Justin Cooper

    So, God can, provided we prepare. I love these escape clauses for God. Cooper fails to define preparation adequetely. So, if (and when) this revival fails to happen, he can always blame his audience for not being adequately prepared.

    Soble’s a genius.
    – Ron Livignston as Lewis Nixon

  5. I understand Mark 9:38-40, but where is the Gospel in “Revivalism?” Revivalism is a man made effort to gin up a God experience. It is based on man-centered effort: if we pray more, read the King James Bible more, have more chruch services, have more revivals, root out sin in the camp, have more visitations, do more evangelism, and spend more time at the altar getting right with gid then we can have REVIVALβ„’.

    *sigh* Revival is like hitting the spiritual lottery! It is so important to the health of an IFB bunker because it increases the numbers of butts in the pews which equals $$$ in the plate. Always follow the money. πŸ™

    1. Well observed.

      This “revival” mentality is an odd one, that seems to go back around 150 years maximum. I might be wrong here, but we don’t see the term used at all in Christian literature before that.

      I’m yet to meet anyone who is able to define what a revival is anyway. What is it? How do you know when it is occurring? and, what is the outcome?

      I sat through plenty of Evnagelical “revival” meetings as a kid. My city or country never experienced any kind of statistical reversal in overall religious affiliation during that time…. Seems like a wasted effort in hindsight, except for the preachers who charged money to be there…

      1. I agree. I’ve sat through countless “revival” meetings and never saw or experienced a “revival.” Was the preaching beneficial to me at the time and contributed to my Christian growth? Perhaps some of it. But only when they stopped yelling and telling stories and expounded in a calm voice on the word of God (which wouldn’t leave much a message). Even one of the Van Gelderens (who are big on revival) admitted to only seeing it once in his ministry, but still not sure how he defined it or knew it was happening. And I always wondered why are evangelists synonymous with revival? Do we have to have an evangelist to have a revival?

    2. And if Revivalβ„’ is not achieved then it is the fault of the people for not preparing enough, praying enough, repenting enough, being pious enough… and we all know there is “Sin in the Camp.” Let the witch hunt begin!
      -maybe it is your wife who weares pants around the house??

      -maybe it is that preset station on your car radio

      -maybe it is that TV in the living room

      it could be anything because we know that their (h)oly (s)pirit is so weak and so easily “grieved” that someone’s sin is stopping gid from bring revival.

      *shakes head and walks off muttering, “God have mercy on us.” πŸ˜₯

      1. Trieber’s sermon titles from his current series: Who needs revival? Revival is always individual before it’s corporate. Revival: A child-like spirit. Revival & the family relationship; Hinderances to Revival: Dethroning God; Hindrances to Revival: Sin of Pride (Preached by one who “literally” boasts that NVBC is the most wonderful in the country and reminds the sheeple time and again that he’s been their pastor 38 yrs and no other pastor could love them as he does (recent remark). Definition of revival per JT: Recognition of sin. Repentance of sin. Renewed desire to serve God. “Literally” all of his sermon texts are Old Testament, and he almost never mentions the name of Jesus Christ.

        1. That’s for sure! And what they can’t find there, they add. “It was for FREEDOM that Christ set us FREE.”

        2. I was at JT’s church – the sad testimony is that I couldn’t remember the church name; only “JT’s church” earlier this year. I remember thinking that it was odd how they lifted up the church as the greatest ever (don’t recall quite as much about the pastor). But in my new life outside these kind of churches, I wonder if Jesus is there, hoping to be honored and glorified in the church He died for.

  6. Are we talking 1 Tim 4:2 or 2 Tim 4:2?

    1 Tim 4:2 – Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;

    2 Tim 4:2 – Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine.

    I’m rather thinking the first one applies better, haymen?

        1. And, on a completely unrelated note, one of the issues sociopaths have is a lack of intimacy in personal relationships.

  7. I’d like to thank Dr. Justin Cooper, because his inexplicable use of quotes around “preach the Word” reminded me to take a look at the “blog” of “unnecessary” quotation marks (www.unnecessaryquotes.com), which I hadn’t thought of in years. Thanks, Dr. Justin!

      1. Good review. His first point is so true about how they shift the meaning of fundamentalism.

        I did think it was interesting that the author said he dislikes ex-fundy “attack” blogs. It’s almost as if he thinks that Justin Cooper is an aberration when there are many, many fundamentalists who preach and teach the same damaging things. Why is it wrong to point out, over and over again, how wrong they are when they focus “on keeping the traditions of dress, decor, and deportment rather than the unadulterated truths of Scripture.”

        1. Open collar flowered shirts were big in the 70s. Great look. I hope they don’t come back.

          wha?
          How…
          whe…when did they ever go out of style? πŸ˜•

        2. Oh, THAT’s what’s so offensive to fundies about Rick Warren! Here all this time I thought the big problem was his emphasis on communicating effectively with “seekers” [the sheer audacity!!]. And all along it was something actually substantial, his [literally] not wearing godly christian clothes like a suit and tie and 4-pointed tetrad pocket square. Silly me.

        3. Dang. I’m done for. I have friends, not just acquaintances, who are Calvinist and who are Charismatic. And not only do I have a cool flowered shirt, it matches a floral dress my wife wears. We bought them that way on our 20th anniversary trip to the Sandwich Islands. (10 years later, we can still wear them)

      2. “I am concerned for the future of Fundamentalism if our focus is on keeping the traditions of dress, decor, and deportment rather than the unadulterated truths of Scripture. I am concerned for the future of Fundamentalism if we are not permitted to think for ourselves, but rather follow those who have gone before us regardless of how they lived or ended their ministry. I am concerned for the future of Fundamentalism if Justin Cooper and those like him are the measure of what we are to become.”

        This is so obvious. Good review, especially since I’ve never heard of this Justin Cooper guy.

  8. I’m still thinking about the “literal” eating of America’s heart. I remember a teacher long ago, in trying to whip the class into a frenzy over a raise in student fees, told us that we “being LITERALLY SCREWED.” I’ve got several disturbing visuals, none of which deals with student fees.

    1. I’m pretty sure the Convention Against Torture forbids schools putting literal screws into literal students.

      (Even the popular use of “screwed” in a pornographic sense is a figurative, not literal, use.)

    1. I knew a couple of elderly brothers years ago who told me that one Sunday evening when they were little kids (this would have been around World War I, maybe even earlier) one of the local churches was holding a revival service. They decided to go. The preacher was a somewhat older woman who had dentures. She preached vigorously. At one point, she thrust out her arm to make a point, and her upper plate fell out onto the floor.

      The boys were so horrified they ran out of the church. 😯

  9. “We’ll get back to having revival when we get back to giving God a chance!” – John R. Rice

    …and they rest not day and night, saying, “Holy, holy, holy, LORD God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come, provided that those Baptists give Him the chance!

    1. Their god is so dependent on them in order to get anything accomplished. What a puny god it is that has to have permission from his creation in order to carry out his plans and purposes. πŸ™„

    1. I actually feel sorry for the kid and his poor wife. Swallowed the same koolaid bait, hook, line, sinker and pole, that he’s fishing with. I hope and pray that their DisIllusionment does come! Who wishes to keep believing an illusion is trustworthy?!

      The hard decision comes after the initial questioning of what you previously thought to be bedrock. The easiest path is to take the blue pill and live the rest of your life convincing yourself that the lie is substantive reality, surrounding yourself with a yes-choir. It’s intellectual masturbation.

      Take the red pill, Justin! Wake up!

    1. ^Yes^
      But a truly omnipotent God really puts a damper on all those Church Growth programs out there. The emphasis goes from:
      “And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved”

      to

      And the soulwinner was adding weekly to their number those who were manipulated and guilted to the altar in order to get them to say the sinner’s prayer …and be saved.”

      1. Yes, but in a reverse context of what is spoken of from the pulpit of manipulation.

        If you love him and know him you keep them. That is the context of 1 John at least. One before the other. Loving Him and knowing Him is first.

    2. The idea of revival seems to be if you do all the “right” things you can manipulate God into sending revival. Or God is like a complexed lock, if you can get the combination just right only then will God send a revival.

      A sermon series on revival was influential in helping me see it was time to leave our fundy church. I couldn’t get past the fact that it was being preached if Christians could just be good enough, pray enough, repent enough, soul-win enough then God would sent a revival. Work, work, work, but no loving God or others was required, other than lip-service to love (if you really loved them you would give them a tract or witness to them)

      1. Yep, same as my former church. Soul-winning was ALL. You were worthless if you didn’t at least go.

        I’m so grateful to God that He showed me something better than just work, work, work.

    1. lol. According to his church’s website, Sam Davison coined the phrase “keep the main thing the main thing.” I’ve heard that phrase said many times by different people, mainly because it’s a quote from Stephen Covey.

    2. Sam Davison was the only one who actually preached about Jesus and the Gospel at the SOTL Conference I attended a couple of years ago. I have more respect for him than I do most Fundies.

  10. I’ve not used the term “Fundy” every in my entire like upon this here earth. However, I must announce to those who care (probably not many) that I’m finally leaving my Bob Jones University approved, dictatorial, authoritarian, old testament preaching, heavily in debt, one man-ruled independent fundamental Baptist church!

    When the decision was made I felt like Pilgrim at the cross when the heavy burden fell off of his back and rolled down the hill; the clouds parted and the brilliant sunshine shone upon my weary heart and mind. The path ahead, though shadowed by uncertainty, seems inviting and filled with possibility. The air seems sweeter.

      1. Thanks pastor’s wife!

        Our last day is September 1st. I’ll know the full affects after that. I don’t want to forsake or lose my faith (like JZ and so many like her). Our God is good and gracious and will certainly lead us in the right way. I still believe that.

        1. Blessings as you learn to seek God in a whole new way. I’ve found that as long as you keep an open mind, while keeping true to actual truth found in the Bible, you’ll find yourself trusting and seeing God in whole new ways.

          The best thing I ever heard was “just because it’s different, doesn’t mean it’s wrong.”

    1. Don’t be surprised if it takes you some time to detox from fundamentalism. It’s much like leaving any other abusive situation. You’ll feel guilty, as if you’ve somehow done something to merit the wrath of the Almighty. Just remember that God isn’t wringing his hands over your departure from your IFB church. He’s seen a lot of his other children through the transition out of abuse into freedom and love.

    2. Best wishes to you… we were in a Hyles-Anderson type church… crushed under a heavy burden of guilt for not going “soul-winning”; when I did go, every part of me said “this salesmanship, just-say-a-prayer stuff” is wrong, but it was what all good churches did; I didn’t know anyone spoke against it. I saw no option, and my soul was in misery, as I saw the years passing, becoming more and more bound to a church that exalting its pastor to ridiculous heights, and put the big emphasis on going soul-winning.

      But God, Who is rich in mercy, showed me several things. He showed me that He had thousands who were not in this mold and who had found freedom. We were blessed to find a far more balanced church. I was the biggest sinner of the family; my wife never had a problem with this brand of soul-winning, and my kids were pretty much forced to go at the old church. I feared the effect upon them, though; I hope we didn’t leave our leaving too long; I hope they love the Lord Jesus Christ with all their heart, mind, and soul.

      Anyway, didn’t mean to get into an auto-biography… best wishes to you, Ian!!

    3. Ian, by “BJU-approved” do you mean one of the short list of churches in the Holy City that BJU-students are allowed to attend? Or are you referring to a BJU-student-mill church in the hinterlands?

      If you’re in the Greenville area and know what you’re leaving but aren’t entirely sure where you’re going, I could recommend a church with which I think you’d be very happy.

  11. The title of this puts me in mind of a variation of a very old joke:
    What goes, “PRAIZE God-“-plop!
    A man preaching his head off.
    (ducks to avoid tomatoes) πŸ˜›

  12. Dear Darrell:

    You’re prompting literal hysteria on your site.

    Please consider correcting this with post on IFB use of the word, ‘literal.’ In those circles, ‘literal’ matters. A lot. Example: The Bible is the literal the word of God.

    This would literally allow us literally to discuss our literal IBF experiences, and to reflect on many the many sayings and sermons we have heard in IFB churches, whether literal or illiterate.

    For eschatology buffs [eschatology is literal history, literally before it happens], such a post is an opportunity to explore literal interpretations of the Bible’s literal apocalyptic writings. Remember when Hal Lindsey decided that Joel’s locusts indicated helicopter gunships? This also is ‘literal.’

    We might even ask whether ‘literal’ might be the new ‘verily’ as in ‘Jesus literally said…’ This could be a translation change to which even diehard KJVO people could agree, since it literally makes the Bible more intelligible — to say nothing of more ‘literal.’

    Since humor literally plays an important role on this site, we could poke fun at all the IFB preachers who literally have no clue as to what they’re saying/doing/thinking.

    Christian Socialist

    PS: Have a literal day!

  13. This Justin Cooper man is married to my niece who is the nicest sweetest girl in the world. I also was young once and thought as radically as he does when I was a late teen and early twenties. By 21 I woke up, and thanks to all three parts of the creator I never had the nerve to preach or I would carry too much shame to name for the rest of my life. Folks remember, in WV the job market wasn’t all that hot in 2006-7 and getting married with no job prospects are a hard thing for a young man. But in good ole WV, you can always get a job as a preacher somewhere. I pray that he doesn’t look back on his life with so much shame and embarrasment that he spirals downward into self loathing and can’t recover. Thankfully there are enough kind hearted people in this world that will help him through. One time when at a family christmas dinner I asked him about a church where he preached recently and whether they provided the snakes or if he brings them. He laughed and said that they furnished them. He has a sense of humor and hopefully doesn’t take himself as seriously as he appears. I wish I could help him but these things are touchy. I do love the humor on this site and I sense that is is all from kind hearted people.

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