185 thoughts on “Yet Another Questionnaire”

      1. I believe that God’s perfectly preserved version of the Enterprise is only in the NCC 1701 original, and not the watered down later -A through -G (or whatever the latest in the pantheon is).

  1. I like #4. That one should be required of all speakers everywhere.

    #5, too.

    Since #12 has already been added, I would like to see #13:

    Do you promise to restrict your remarks to an honest and balanced explanation of the Bible (based on passages that you have studied within the past two weeks, rather than simply rehashing the same three sermons week after week after week), with no war stories, no hobby horses, a bare minimum personal opinion that is clearly caveated as personal opinion, and no congratulatory remarks toward yourself or, excepting a simple “thank you,” to the hosting pastor? Forbidden words include Revival, I, Me, My, Mine, Amen (used as a question), Preaching, Fire, Brimstone, “Shoutin'”…

    Violation of any of these terms may activate a trap door into a shark tank. This trap door is controlled by our most jaded congregant, who volunteered for the job for the sheer pleasure to be derived. Any medical costs related to the activation of the trap door will be deducted from the love offering and from the tape and book sales from your table at the back of the auditorium.

      1. Phooey.

        All speakers.

        Everywhere.

        Otherwise, into the shark tank they go.

        I have spoken. So it is written. So it shall be done.

    1. I like # 4 too but I have a problem with # 5. A church member doesn’t need his pastors permission to receive emails from.. This is a pastor seeking too much control on who his members financially support outside of the church budget.

      1. I didn’t see it that way. I thought its intent was to prevent the speakers from buttonholing congregants, asking them for money in the hallway.

        But you have a point.

        1. Yes, I’ve been there. While I understand not making private pitches at the church, the pastor often has a control issue. Most IFB pastors are perpetually depressed because they can’t figure out why the “faith promise” hasn’t increased during the same time that the local chicken plant shut down and put half the church members out of work.

          They don’t want you to steal what they feel is rightfully theirs, thus why they always emphasize that faith promise has to be above and beyond your Old Testament Jewish tithe.

          I have yet to read from the Scriptures that I cannot designate my giving to a specific ministry inside or out of the church, and I resent a pastor trying to control my finances, so he can buy a new church van or pay for whatever the unneeded pet project is.

      2. Church members shouldn’t be on the interwebz at all, let alone have email. Can’t control them very well if they are online.

  2. If they are involved in planting or preaching @ IFB churches, then #7 has to be a “no” answer. Also on that Q, how is the evangelist supposed to know what happens to his converts after the fact, whether they go on to join or establish a non-approved church or not?

    At least on #9, I suspect they either mean or at least mean to include “your family” as part of “your organization”.

    1. How do they know? Simple: if they leave to go to another church, they weren’t really saved. (But we reserve the right to keep that person in our statistics as “saved”

  3. I wish I could find the form my old fundie church sent out when one missionary in BIMI was allegedly spotted wearing shorts in Africa. I think that thing was 5 pages long.

  4. Can someone help me? My eyes aren’t what they used to be.

    Which question(s) asks:
    Do you love God with all your heart?
    Do you love your neighbor the same way?
    Do you feed the hungry?
    Do you take care of your widows?

    1. Yes!!! How can they not see that they have established their own list of “righteousness” — avoiding theater, social drinking, etc. — instead of seeking to follow what the Bible actually says?!

    2. Just like there is no question “Are you saved?” or “Are you a Christian?”. “Do you love God with all your heart?” cannot be demonstrated one way or the other. A representative of a “liberal” organization could say “yes”. Ditto for answering the “Do you love your neighbor?”

      Because this is a question concerning organizations that are not churches, they may feel that it is the church’s job to take care of widows and to feed the hungry.

    3. We’d be GLAD to take care of widows* & feed hungry* people if they would take an oath of loyalty to our organization & swear off all association with any other organization.

      *by take care of widows & feed the hungry we mean We’ll be sharing what God has laid on our hearts about what they are doing wrong to be in the position they are in. Man shall not live by bread alone, amen?

      1. “*by take care of widows & feed the hungry we mean We’ll be sharing what God has laid on our hearts about what they are doing wrong to be in the position they are in.”

        Amen, Rob M! That’s exactly what a lot of fundamentalist churches mean by those phrases.

    4. There are really no questions about what the respondent’s ministry actually does– jsut McCarthy-style “Are you now or have you ever been?” inquisitions.

      1. That’s kinda Scorpio’s point.

        The questionnaire is all about tithes of mint and cummin, but it leaves out the more important stuff.

        That is the big problem with IFB-ism. Sooner or later, even in the great churches in which I grew up, the legalism chokes out the good, just as ivy kills an oak.

        It’s heart-breaking to watch, for those of us who remember how things used to be. We knew it wasn’t perfect. It never is. But to see what it has become…

        Sickening.

        And it starts with seemingly innocuous little extrabiblical questionnaires; with threats of separation over non-doctrinal issues where we should give grace.

        1. Thanks MSK for explaining that more gracefully than I could have.

          Let me just add that most fundy churches will arrogantly proclaim that they do things “biblically”. Yet they ignore the very words of Jesus so often. Instead they focus on man-made doctrines like no “theatre”, no dancing, hair length, Bible versions etc. And note that I said most, not all.

  5. Chuckled at “theater” – guess going to plays and musicals are as bad as movies. The cinema must be ok.

    1. The author doesn’t seem to be aware of newfangled inventions like moving pictures, grammophones, television, or the interwebs.

    2. Not “theater.” It’s “theatre.” That’s how their Lord and Saviour King James spelled it. (Apologies to MY Lord and Savior King Jesus.)

    3. Well, as one Baptist preacher once told me, we know theater is of the devil because they call themselves the same thing as wimmin who have sex with wimmin.

      You know: thespians.

        1. Perhaps it was tongue in cheeck but, pursuant to poe’s law, one can never tell. It’s just a good thing Paul was never moved to write an epistle to the saints called of God who are on the Isle of Lesbos.

    1. For all I can see on the form, they may actually send this form to women they are potentially going to have come preach at their church!?!?!?!

        1. Dear Big Gary, D.P. (Doctor of Perambulation)

          Shoes are not the issue. As I recall, the problem is women wearing shoes with an open toe. You couldn’t imagine to what open-toed shoes could lead …

          Christian Socialist

  6. I love how believers’ baptism was thrown in there with all the “no” answers in #2 to see if you’re paying attention.
    #9 I just don’t get. What does it mean to permit other people to follow their own line of theological teaching? Does this refer to the priesthood of the believer (good) or to allowing people to preach heresy (bad)?
    Good thing they are ok with writing on the back to clarify answers . . . most of these questions seem double-edged. I still can’t decide whether a Board of Directors is supposed to be good or bad.

    1. I noticed that one as well. This one seemed to me to violate the priesthood of the believer, but they don’t care about that. To a fundamentalist, separation is more important than liberty.

      1. Having been exposed to churches in that locality, I can almost guarantee that it’s meant to call out speaking in tongues. That area had a decent number of IFB-ish churches but very few Pentecostal ones so there were always some Pentecostal-leaning people in the IFB churches and the prevailing attitude was, “well, okay – you can believe what you want about gifts of the spirit, as long as you don’t bring it up within the confines of the church.”

        However, every once in a while, a group would amass in one of the churches and attempt to challenge the IFB stand on speaking in tongues, which would usually result in a church split and lots of hurt feelings. The most dramatic one I can think of was when a church secretary decided to side with the tongues group and the pastor didn’t fire her or, I don’t know – make her sit in the corner until she behaved. That ended with a new church formed (which collapsed within about five years) and the pastor of the original church sent packing. After that, most of the churches were Not Fooling Around when it came to espousing doctrines.

    2. They have eternal security, baptism by immersion, and the 2 Pre’s as other “must yes” questions. I’m not sure if they are making a distinction between Believer’s Baptism & Baptism by Immersion. Maybe that immersion baptism of non-believers isn’t efficacious?

      1. My guess is that you have to answer “yes” to both “believers’ baptism” and “baptism by immersion” to pass the test.

        Baby sprinklers not wanted!

        1. Baby dunkers are disinvited too. I believe that abroad there are still churches that immerse infants.

        2. I’ve seen it done at a somewhat-unusual Catholic church, and I believe that Orthodox churches also baptize infants by immersion (don’t worry; they’re in no danger of drowning).

        3. It’s rare but they do occasionally drown. I would assume that congregations in the states would not want to be liable for potential lawsuits/etc. From a few years ago apparently in Moldova:

          http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/priest-moldova-father-valentin-allegedly-drowns-baby-child-baptism-article-1.200641

          I’m guessing any drownings are due to not following procedure or safety protocols, but if I were an insurance company I would certainly prefer the church sprinkled babies if they are going to baptize infants.

  7. Well, as such, I think it’s pretty fair and straightforward and short.

    I like MSK’s comments that there should be another question restricting preaching to what the Bible says instead of war stories and personal opinion; pretty tired, too, of the long and complex psuedo-honor being shown to the pastor and church. Simple “thank you” would be far better. Does the speaker exalt Christ with as much fervor as he exalts the host pastor?

    I’d have a hard time answering #6 “No”, because it’s a gamble as to whether filling out the form will pay off.

    1. Their definition of Salvation at most references 2 of the 5 solas, and they leave sola off of the faith one, making it much more Roman Catholic confession of the faith, and they also tack on repentance, and I think there’s an implied “sola Preacher gloria”.

    1. Yeah, Dr. Britton hadn’t been the pastor there since 96, so who knows how old that form is. Besides that, all the staff has gmail addresses now, so they can’t be too old fashioned.

      1. Wasn’t there a guy on the Christian circuit named Britton who did a chalk-art thing? I hadn’t thought of the guy in years and I might have the name wrong, but the name rings a bell.

    1. Yes it is. I hope they just have very poor command of the language, and didn’t know how to ask what they are trying to ask, but that’s a borderline dictatorial question.

    2. The author of the questionnaire seems to hold that cooperating with other churches that may have differing theological views is just about the worst possible misconduct.

    3. Another way to phrase the question might be, “Would you be willing to have us examine your Bible to see what you’ve underlined or highlighted?”
      To examine this closely, you may be able to see all things the potential speaker has contemplated about God. Hopefully, if he is truly a godly man, he will even have noted next to the underlined word, verse, or passage, the name of the MOg who deserves the credit for instructing him to do so.

    4. Well, for a church #9 would be a problem. I’m guessing that what they are concerned for this “organization” is that the head of the organization may be orthodox but that other members of the organization (teachers) which hold un-orthodox views.

  8. Is there a point in having a line for a signature if there’s (1) no statement of “I/We the undersigned to hereby swear..”, and (2) no date?

  9. Type written. ahhhh the good ol’ days. The clack-clack of the keys and the bell to remind you to manually return the carriage.

    Each generation passes down to the next its views and biases. The fundies took their eyes off of Christ and elevated their rules above the Ruler and became Lords of their own domains. Into the caves they went in order to preserve their purity and in the process poisoned their own souls.

    Sometimes in the darkest hours, left to my own thoughts, I question myself. Back when I was still in the cave it seemed to be easier to be more holy, and “On fire for God” and praying, and doing, and …. then it hits me. That is the way of the pharisee: appearance, works, doing, and check-list churchaninty. In the darkness I chide myself for desiring to retun to the leeks, the fleshpots, the prayer meetings, the soulwinning, tract passing, and altarcalls of IFBjypt.

    When I see junk like above all I see is division in the body of Christ. Where is the body of Christ in the brick and mortar edifaces we have built for ourselves? I know that my own soul has been poisoned against organized church. I do desire to show Christ to those around me but… now I find that I purposefully do not engage in religious topics for fear of falling into the old routine of selling God to someone like a door to door salesman who is setting their mark up for the “gotcha” moment in order to close the sale.

    So, I am just as much a problems as the IFB easy-believeism, and those who promote a frail weak God unable to do anything without us. I am frozen with fear that I am in the ditch on the other side of the road from the Fundies and I’m just as useless. And the Body of Christ is split, is battling against itself in an attempt to gain control over its members… as we have forgotten who is in control, who is the head and shepherd over his flock.

    Sitting alone in in the darkness with my thoughts I swear I can hear Satan and Screwtape having a hearty chuckle over it. And I hang my head in shame.

    *dismounts soap box… mumbles to self and leaves the field.

    1. I felt more purposeful in the IFB (which also resulted me in feeling proud and self-righteous too!)

      Sometimes now I feel a bit adrift; that’s when I choose to focus on the fruit of the Spirit. Maybe I’m not racking up a huge checklist of amazing achievements via souls saved, conferences attended, people impressed, etc., but I can focus on being loving, joyful, gentle, patient, kind, and so on.

    2. I liked what our guest speaker said yesterday in Church.

      “the Bible can be summed up into two thoughts: You are more sinful than you could ever imagine. God is more gracious than you could ever imagine.”

  10. “Please comply within the very near future.”

    Ahh, I love loopholes. “Very near future” is a subjective term…sure I’ll complete your form. In the “very near” future. :twisted:

  11. Well, that takes me back. Fairwinds was one of perhaps 8 IFB-lite churches in the area where most of my family lives. I seem to recall that Fairwinds was one of the more hard-line churches, though still mild compared to some that I’ve seen highlighted here on SFL. Pastor Britton was there for about a million years and I remember him being a pretty good pastor. He came to visit my granddad in the hospital, even though my granddad was no longer a member there when he was dying.

    With 15 years or so of perspective, I can now see that these churches were part of a very insular, personality-driven group that traded members and staff back and forth like baseball cards. A church would lose a pastor or beloved staff member, different doctrines would creep in or be thrown out and a group of members would be up in arms and walk out. They’d form their own church, or go to one of the other local churches that was more in line with their views and then after a few years it would happen again.

    My parents both grew up in that area and thought it was perfectly normal – after all, they met when my mother’s father dramatically resigned from a deacon board and took his family and several others to a church where my dad’s brother was the pastor. We were a military family, though, and I wasn’t much exposed to the incestuous histories of the churches until we moved there when I was 15. I was endlessly confused by it and still am.

  12. Since Question #1 was “are you some kind of liberal?”, and Question #3 was “Do you work with anybody who works with liberals?”, I was disappointed not to find them asking “Does anybody you work with know anybody who once shared an elevator with a liberal?” The liberals have obviously gotten to them.

  13. Well, since this questionnaire is likely around 20 years old (it appears E. L. Britton ceased being the pastor in ’96), I can still hope the church is not as obnoxiously Fundy as it once was.

  14. 1)Are you or your organization with the NCC, WCC, or the NAE at home or abroad? No
    2) Do you or your organization adhere to any of the following:
    a) Eternal Security? No
    b) Tongues? No
    c) Gift of Healing? No
    d) Infant Baptism? Yes
    e) Believer’s Baptism? Redundant, as “Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you” (1 Peter 3:21, ESV).
    f) Baptism by Immersion? A Baptism done by immersion is a valid Baptism, as it involves water and the Word of God (in particular, I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit). However, God has not commanded us on how much water we should use nor how to apply the water, so Baptism by pouring and/or sprinkling are also valid Baptisms.
    g) Pre-Millenialism? No
    h) Pre-Tribulation Rapture? No, and add the answer no to any kind of rapture.
    i) Ecumenical Evangelism? No
    j) Theistic Evolution? No
    3) See #1, as it is the same question.
    4) Do you agree to refrain from making any plea for money from the pulpit or in private conversation with church members? Yes
    5) Do you agree to refrain from procuring names for your personal mailing list unless special permission is given? N/A
    6) Do you in engage in or encourage others in any of the following:
    a) Theatre? Yes
    b) Social Drinking? Yes
    c) Smoking? Yes
    d) Dancing? Yes
    e) Gambling? Depends on State Laws, as the Bible does state to obey the civil authorities.
    7) Are you involved in evangelism that results in establishing fundamental churches only? Why would I be involved in establishing the “Synagogues of Satan” known as Fundamentalist Churches?
    7b) Where is your church membership? Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (I will personally withhold the name of the church as that might give my general location)
    8) No
    9) No
    10) Yes (if you are referring to my denomination)
    11) Yes (if you are referring to my denomination)

    1. BTW, #1 is about official affiliations with the listed organizations, #3 is more like “have you ever played in a church basketball or softball league with churches in one of those organizations.

    2. Your answers are good for a chuckle. However, I should point out that since we get our word “Baptism” from the original “Baptizo” which means to immerse or submerge, you are right in that God did not tell us how much water to use (a tub, pool, lake, river or ocean I think would all work) we are instructed on how the water is to be applied.

      1. And yet we don’t interpret the Lord’s Supper & verbiage around it to mean that the form must be a full meal. Don’t get to pick & choose where you are strict adherent to verb definitions, and where you aren’t out of convenience. Where the Bible/Paul/God want a form, they define it (qualities of a pastor, practices of tongues, etc).

        1. Well, we are the ones that started calling it Lord’s Supper. I have actually always called it “communion.” Jesus just broke bread and gave wine and said “As often as you do this, do it in remembrance of me.” So I think that since it was just a piece of broken bread and drink of wine we can understand it isn’t a full meal. Also, every example of baptism in the Bible is immersion.

        2. We also wouldn’t build an entire eschatology around a latin verb rapturo. Or at least we wouldn’t be well advised to do so.

        3. Jesus broke bread & sopped it after then entire passover meal.

          1 Corinthians 11 clearly indicates that as the rich being full & drunk at Lord’s Supper & the poor being hungry that it was a full meal. It’s not prescribed to be a full meal, but it is certainly acceptable. If you want to use the verbs scripture used, it would be part of a full meal.

        4. Yep. And I think it should still be a full meal. With dessert, if you please. It is best if we serve it just before the football games start. Food, fellowship, and football. Yet another trinity…

          Which is simply further proof that this is of God.

        5. If sticking with the actual text & meanings, these are the traditional baptism in scripture. I’m not certain you can draw all the lessons/disambiguation that often is drawn from them, but there’s no way to say they are all by immersion.

          Baptism of John
          Baptism of Jesus
          Baptism of Fire
          Baptism of Moses
          Baptism of the Cross
          Baptism of the Holy Spirit
          Baptism of Believers (this one is a big stretch IMO)

        1. That’s one way to look at it. Jesus did not go into the bathroom, turn on the faucet, and rub his hands under the water. Another way to look at it, would be that there are more than one way to wash hands.
          I appreciate Rob’s help in pointing out Strong’s take on the verse. Baptizo being translate Wash, but here is the definition of what kind of washing Baptizo is.

          http://www.studylight.org/lex/grk/gwview.cgi?n=907

          to dip repeatedly, to immerse, to submerge (of vessels sunk)
          to cleanse by dipping or submerging, to wash, to make clean with water, to wash one’s self, bathe
          to overwhelm
          Not to be confused with 911, bapto. The clearest example that shows the meaning of baptizo is a text from the Greek poet and physician Nicander, who lived about 200 B.C. It is a recipe for making pickles and is helpful because it uses both words. Nicander says that in order to make a pickle, the vegetable should first be ‘dipped’ (bapto) into boiling water and then ‘baptised’ (baptizo) in the vinegar solution. Both verbs concern the immersing of vegetables in a solution. But the first is temporary. The second, the act of baptising the vegetable, produces a permanent change. When used in the New Testament, this word more often refers to our union and identification with Christ than to our water baptism. e.g. Mark 16:16. ‘He that believes and is baptised shall be saved’. Christ is saying that mere intellectual assent is not enough. There must be a union with him, a real change, like the vegetable to the pickle! Bible Study Magazine, James Montgomery Boice, May 1989.

        2. The hand washing in Luke was not submerging. They also didn’t have sinks, and hand washing by jewish tradition was pouring unused clean water over your hands, not multiple people submerging in a sink or bowl that collected all the previous dirt/disease.

        3. To add to the confusion– the New Testament was largely written by Jews whose first language was not Greek. They use Greek words differently than they’d be used by a native, educated Greek speaker. And their grammar is often terrible.

          Classical Greek (aka “Attic”) is to Biblical Greek as the Queen’s English is to Jamaican Patois.

        4. Sorry Jay, but you didn’t hear the “immersion” definition from a Greek scholar. I should know – I have about 20 credit hours of graduate level Greek all at Baptist seminaries. And my profs would be the first to tell you that Baptizo does not mean immerse. It has plenty of use both within the NT and in extra Biblical literature, and while it has a range of meanings like any word, the primary meaning is just to wash.

        5. Wow. Thanks all for an intriguing, enlightening, and civil discussion. However, I think my main takeaway from this is we simply have no idea what exactly “baptizo” means in the context of Christian baptism. Too many “Biblical Greek” scholars throughout the ages, including today, define Koine Greek words to fit their own personal theological biases. There have actually been studies that show that one’s personal biases can color one’s beliefs and opinions even subconsciously and even if one is actively trying to avoid such bias.

          When we are getting bogged down in pickle recipes, I just don’t think we are going to get “THE ANSWER.” (Although, I would point out, just to be snarky, that according to the recipe, “baptizo” seems to mean marinate or otherwise soak in liquid. I don’t think even a dunker would say to keep ‘em under for that long! Although safe to say that person would “sin no more.”)

          I think this is one issue where church tradition really does have to stand in for having “THE ANSWER.” And on that point, there seem to be a range of methods that the church over time has deemed acceptable. I’m comfortable with that.

        6. I actually believe that the primary definition of BAPTIZW is “to dip” or “to immerse.” But that doesn’t preclude other uses of the word.

          I think the existence of mikvot in Judaism, dating back to the New Testament era infers that a Jewish author would have used the term that way.

          I think Eastern Orthodox and other ancient traditions support the idea that immersion was normative, as does the Didache and the church fathers.

          Pouring or sprinkling entered into the picture pretty early on as alternative for when there was not adequate water to fully immerse. During the Middle Ages, pouring and sprinkling became more common in the West, for whatever reason.

          Protestantism is a Western tradition, and so most Protestants other than Baptists do not practice immersion.

        7. FWIW, although the Eastern Orthodox believe baptism must be by triple immersion (once for each person of the godhead), they allow medical and practical exceptions and also will chrismate a convert from Roman Catholicism or Protestantism who wasn’t immersed if the baptism was otherwise orthodox.

        8. Jay,
          Dr. Boice, for 32 years pastor of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, would have quite a chuckle hearing you quote him in an attempt to “prove” that baptism by immersion is the only legitimate baptism.

  15. This church is about three miles from us. We actually looked at their school for our son at one time. For about 30 seconds, maybe. They are still pretty hard core fundy but they’re not known to be especially obnoxious, either.

    1. I looked over the schools summer reading list for fun. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the high schoolers had Scarlett Letter, Animal Farm, Screwtape Letters, among others. While the middle school and elementary list were rather weak, the high school list was excellent.

  16. #3 deeply disturbs me. They are prohibiting evangelism with all who are not in 100% doctrinal agreement. I believe Jesus specifically prohibited his disciples from doing this.

    1. I know! It’s heartbreaking to realize how they, in an attempt to follow God, actually are disobeying what God actually revealed to us through Jesus Christ. (And also heartbreaking because I once thought the same.)

  17. Interesting that this was from a time when pentacostalism was the big bogey man that churches had to take-a-stand against. By now, I think the charismatics and radical Baptists have mostly separated themselves into their own congregations and the battles for church real estate are largely over. (Cf my MOG who told me that “everything the Assembly of God believe is garbage” because I had started going to an AG church with a friend in college who was struggling with depression and needed to keep going to his AG church but didn’t want to go alone.)

    What’s the new bogeyman these days, I wonder.

      1. That was my first thought, but I think it’s mostly past as a thing, although I suspect in 40 years Fundies will still be fighting against it. It varies from church to church. I was trying to find an SFL post of a street preacher carrying a sandwich board with all kinds of sins he was against (and had way to many apostrophes), but I can’t locate it.

        Gays certainly are near the top of all IFB boogeymen list.

      1. Yes Calvinism. Definitely Calvinism. The YRR movement has scared many IFBers and rightfully so. They offer substance and actual liberty instead of shallowness and bondage.

        BTW – First post!! :grin:

        1. I have to say that although I am Calvinist friendly, though not completed Calvinist in doctrine, some of the YRR do get on my nerves a bit. Firstly, when I hear young and restless, I think soap opera…lol.

          Secondly, although there is some substance, there is also a lot of man centered hero worship of people like Piper, Driscoll, or whoever.

        2. “I have to say that although I am Calvinist friendly, though not completed Calvinist in doctrine, some of the YRR do get on my nerves a bit. Firstly, when I hear young and restless, I think soap opera…lol.”

          I can agree with that entirely. I’m not entirely Calvinistic (yet) but I am friendly towards it and preach with people who are. The young, restless moniker is… probably not the best. I first thought soap opera too.

          “Secondly, although there is some substance, there is also a lot of man centered hero worship of people like Piper, Driscoll, or whoever.”

          Maybe we know different YRR people because while I’ve seen respect for Piper, Washer etc I’ve seen nothing like the MOG worship that comes from IFBdom. And I’ve yet to meet a YRR’er (too many Rs!)that even likes Driscoll!

        3. “Substance and Liberty??? Seriously? Like Driscoll the self-worshipping heretic, sex crazed monster? Yeah…he’s a threat”

          Again I’ve yet to meet anyone that would be considered YRR that even likes Driscoll. Try reading everything said before jumping to conclusions. And you might want to get that hatred checked out bud.

        4. “They offer substance and actual liberty”

          :lol: :roll: :lol:

          Maybe in the sense that normal Federal prison offers more liberty than Supermax.

      2. One of the first times I met my mother-in-law, who has been a part of IFB churches her entire life and still struggles in a very honest way with all the SFL-type issues, the conversation drifted toward theology and she mentioned that she was a Calvinist. I was very surprised. I said, “Really?? What made you a Calvinist?”

        She response: “I read the Book of Romans.”

  18. Dear Fartwinds Indapendent Bible Church:

    Do you needlessly hack apart the body for which Jesus died to become the head?

    Christian Socialist

    PS: Did I say ‘Indapendent?’ I’m sorry. I meant ‘Independent.’

      1. Dude, how old are you?
        There were photocopy machines in 1976. I know; I used them.

        1. I don’t recall copy machines showing up in churches/christian schools that I was at until the mid-80s, and even then teachers still used mimeo’s fairly frequently for cost savings or something (maybe just out of habit, not sure).

  19. 1. Are you or your organization with the NCC, WCC, or the NAE at home or abroad? No
    2. Do you or your organization adhere to any of the following?
    a. Eternal Security? Yes (I John 5:13; John 3:16; Ephesians 4:30)
    b. Tongues? No (I Cor. 13-14; Acts 2)
    c. Healing? No (I Tim. 5:13; I Cor. 13)
    d. Infant Baptism? No: Infants cannot believe on Jesus for salvation (Acts 2:41; 16:31; Mark 16:16)
    e. Believer’s Baptism? Yes: Scripture only shows believer’s baptism as valid baptism (Acts 2:41; 8:36-38; 18:8)
    f. Baptism by Immersion? Yes: Scripture reveals that immersion is the only accepted form of baptism. Sprinkling and pouring are not immersion and are rejected. Baptizo means to immerse and is found in every reference regarding believer’s baptism. (Acts 2:41; Matt. 3:14-16; Mark 1:9-10)
    g. Pre-Millenialism: Yes (Rev 20:1-7) Obviously a literal one thousand years and a literal reign on Earth. It is hard to have a reign on Earth with no King.
    h. Pre-Tribulational Rapture: Undecided, leaning towards no (Matt. 24-25; I Thess. 4-5)
    i. Ecumenical Evangelism: No: We are not all “Christian brothers”, despite the fact that many use the term “Christian” freely. Only those that believe in the Lord Jesus alone for salvation and adhere to His doctrine are “Christian” and the rest are rebellious and/or lost in sin and not to be joined with in anything other than a business agreement. The banner we rally under is not “soul winning”, “church growth”, or anything else, but the Truth of God’s Word (Eph. 2:8-9; Matt. 7:13-27; John 3; II John)
    j. Theistic Evolution: No: God created the heavens and Earth in six literal days and literally formed Adam from the dust of the earth before breathing into him the breath of life (Gen. 1-2; 5:1-2; Col. 1:16; 3:10)
    3. Do either you or your organization engage in cooperative evangelism w/organizations that work with churches or groups in the NCC, WCC, or NAE: Not that I know of (I do not usually ask)
    4. Do you agree to refrain from making any plea for money from the pulpit or in private conversation with church members? Is asking people to pray for a need a plea for money?
    5. Do you agree to refrain from procuring names for your personal mailing list unless special permission is given? Sure. How would I go about doing that anyway?
    6. Do you engage in or encourage others in any of the following:
    a. Theatre: Engage: No, Encourage: No (waste of money)
    b. Social Drinking: Engage: No, Encourage: No
    c. Smoking: Engage: No, Encourage: No (proven to cause cancer)
    d. Dancing: Engage: Only w/wife, Encourage: No
    e. Gambling: Engage: No, Encourage: No (poor stewardship: I Tim. 6:17); does 401k and the stock market count?
    7. Are you involved in evangelism that results in establishing fundamental churches only? As far as I know
    *Where is your church membership: At the church that I pastor (to be unnamed)
    8. Do you or does your organization cooperate w/any form of the pentecostal or charismatic movement? No
    9. Are other members of your organization permitted to follow their own line of theological teaching or cooperation? How could I stop them, unless they are in leadership?
    10. Does your organization publish a regular financial statement: Yes
    11. Does your organization have a Board of Directors: No

    1. BTW, RE: Gambling, one could make the case that the missionaries tho this church seeking support were gambling that they weren’t going to be subjected to this form’s interrogation later on as a contingency to the support.

    2. Dear Looking to Jesus:

      I don’t know if you’re serious or seriously jesting. In either case, I’ll overlook many statements and proffer a few observations on two …

      d. Infant Baptism? No: Infants cannot believe on Jesus for salvation (Acts 2:41; 16:31; Mark 16:16)

      1. This makes faith meritorious. Essentially, this makes our faith a secondary offering beside and in addition to the one sacrifice of Christ. Where I live, this is beyond heretical. It is blasphemous.

      2. Many of the the objections to infant baptism are equally applicable to practice of circumcision. And no, circumcision was not ‘merely’ a sign that one descended from Ysra’el [Dt 10:16, 30:6; Je 4:4; Ro 2:29; Co 2:11; Ph 3:3].

      g. Pre-Millenialism: Yes (Rev 20:1-7) Obviously a literal one thousand years and a literal reign on Earth. It is hard to have a reign on Earth with no King.

      1. That this thousand years is literal is not obvious to all of us.

      2. Re 20:3 states clearly that this pit is bottomless. This seems unusual for literal pits. Nor is it clear what an angelic being from glory would be doing with a literal [I presume that means physical] key and chain.

      3. It is hard to be a king without subjects and a kingdom.

      Christian Socialist

  20. I spoke at this church! They are good people. And if a person wants pulpit access/financial support from a church why not answer a few questions?

    1. There’s no Biblical support for screening your mission support on any of the questions on that questionnaire. Good people or not, (kind of doubtful just how good when they’re passing off these passive aggressive minefields), unbiblical is unbiblical.

      1. “Biblical” and “non-Biblical” are not terribly helpful here. This falls into the category of discernment. It may be poor discernment but it’s not a matter of Biblical teaching or doctrine.

      1. Dave, be careful about lying. The Bible has clear injunctions against that (though not against the theater or dancing).

        1. I have yet to see anyone here state that they think that any fundamentalist is good. And don’t you think that Rob is playing a little loose with the truth by stating that they are not good people? Just a humble observation. :lol:

        2. Then you either haven’t been here very long or you haven’t been paying attention.

          I don’t wish to be rude but you simply don’t kow what you’re talking about.

        3. I was not playing loose with anything. Biblical teaching on ministry is clear that UNITY is the goal of Christian fellowship, and not separation as this questionnaire clearly is trying to establish.

          Unity != Unanimity. I stand by my statement, please find somewhere in scripture that would approve of asking a question like #9.

        4. I also stand by the assertion that there’s no good intention you can possibly ascribe to passing that questionnaire around. At best you could maybe make the case that the Pastor was pressured into sending it by an obnoxious board member and caved. That’s not what I would call a mark of strong leadership or what you would want out of a Pastor.

        5. Last point, I never said they weren’t good, I questioned *how* good. Good people do rotten things from time to time, and IMO the above questionnaire is a rotten thing, possibly done by good people, possibly done by not good people whom I don’t know, and don’t care to characterize.

      2. @Dave, two of the kindest, most loving women I have ever had the honor of knowing were in IFB churches. I’ve known many kind, good, decent people who were IFB. I suggest you actually know and understand of what you speak before opening your mouth and confirming your fool status again.

        1. Polecat, thank you for your reply. It was nice to see that you care for a couple of IFB ladies. Now that makes two positive statements I’ve seen here.
          And I did NOT say that no one here has feelings for IFBers, just that I have not seen any indication of it, but if you had actually read what I said before opening your mouth, well, you know.
          And thanks for the insult, it really was most gracious of you.

    2. Dear James:

      You are aware, of course, that alternative questions could be framed and put to FIB church. Example:

      Does your church impede witness to Jesus by schismatic behaviors [Jo 17:21, 23; 1Co 1:10, 11:18, 12:12, 25; Phi 1:27, etc.]?

      Christian Socialist

  21. Dear SFL Reader:

    The Word of God is belittled when in the Church or in one of the churches the Word is construed in a fashion that makes obedience to the Word of God not dependence upon grace but a convenient, moralistic, pietistic, or ritualistic conformity. Some of the common examples in American churches of such conformity do not have the dignity of an even colorable biblical basis. That is the case with those sects which teach that the practice of the Christian life chiefly consists of abstention from smoking, drinking, and dancing; those which make a fetish about customs of diet and dress; those which regard attendance in churchly rites and ceremonies magically or mechanistically; or those which disregard the wholeness of the Bible and select from it the fragments which seem to reinforce and condone what they prefer to say and do. None of these practices has any inherent efficacy to save a man from the power of death, nor will any of them enable a man to escape the fullness of God’s judgment. And all such efforts only imitate the disrespect shown for the Word of God in the earlier days of the old Israel.

    Free in Obedience
    — William Stringfellow –

  22. Rob, what are you talking about? I could care less about some questionnaire, I commented on your stating ‘just how good’ the members of that church ware. You don’t know them, James has met them and he complemented them.
    And Darrell, you are wrong on both counts. I have been around for a few months and I do know what I am talking about. I have not once seen anyone say anything good about the fundamentalist movement.
    The day after the Indiana bus accident I saw how it seemed so hard for you people to refrain from your criticism for one day and could hardly wait to get back to it.

    1. Dave, I’m not sure if you are being disingenuous or just are not thinking clearly but you conflated “fundamentalist” in your first comment with “fundamentalism” in your second comment. Regarding the first, I know many fundamentalists – including my own family members – who are truly good people. Regarding fundamentalism, yes, the movement has done some good. But even Adolph Hitler built an impressive economy and infrastructure, so those kinds of evaluations are not very helpful.

    2. Sigh. Claiming to have been around for a while, when you have only been here for a few weeks, is like the IFB claiming to be “old-fashioned” when, in fact, their history only dates back to the late 1800s. While it may be true from THEIR perspective, limited as it is, it is laughable to people whose churches date back 500-600 years.

      This issue comes up occasionally. While we have very little good to say about the IFB system, we know and love people in the IFB. We used to be among them. Some of them impressed upon us their love for God, the Bible, and People, and we are forever grateful for their ministry. As has already been stated here more than once, the IFB gave many of us some tremendous gifts:

      1. Bible. We memorized verses. We learned where to find verses. This is a priceless gift.

      2. Music. We had SO MUCH fun singing! A joyful, boistrous time. And our music was excellent. Everyone knew how to sing parts, and how to sing well. I didn’t understand how excellent our music was until I moved away for my first job, and couldn’t find similar quality and liveliness.

      3. Community. Even though many of us have come to see how unhealthy the rules-based religion and insularity could be, we were a family. Brothas from anotha mutha and all that. Now, WE are the ones trying to offer that family feeling to others who grew up in churches where they just don’t tend to get together for fellowship the way we did.

      The problem is, the IFB model is flawed. Especially if one of the Mother Ships (“christian” colleges) gets to have too much influence. I have seen joyful, powerful churches turn into zombies because they came to believe the BJU Way regarding music. Out with the joyful stuff we used to sing!

      “We must Separate from anyone unto the third and fourth generation, lest we Touch the Unclean Thing, and the Lord doth not receive us! We have no idea what is unclean about various things, but we must Err On The Side of Safety! Because the Lord did verily call his people to a life of safety and conformity to the personal preferences of one or two men, not to a life of liberty in Christ, priesthood of the believer, or of transformation by the Spirit. Pay no attention to Romans 14, or the entire book of Galatians, or Romans 12. Who are you going to believe? Your own lying eyes as you study the Bible for yourself, or my interpretation? Have you even BEEN to seminary? Submit to my authority, you pathetic worm! SUBMIT!”

      1. Well MSK, it was refreshing to see that you admit that fundamentalists, or dare I conflate fundamentalism, has it’s good points and that God uses them. Sigh!
        Big Gary “you people” are an entity. Perhaps I should have been more specific, “you SFL people”, there does that help? Never mind a response to what I asserted there, just that I said “you people”, very evasive.
        And last but not least Rob, “trolling”? You need some new material

    3. Folks, in my experience, once someone makes a generalization about “you people” (using that phrase), the conversation is over, even if words continue to be exchanged.

      1. What do I mean? Just quoting from Dave:

        “The day after the Indiana bus accident I saw how it seemed so hard for you people to refrain from your criticism for one day and could hardly wait to get back to it.”

  23. Okay kids…I don’t know who James is but I GREW UP in this church. I can tell you anything you need to know. This church was a mold breaker in that the pastor was actually a fairly well educated man and not one to fall for anything that came down the pike. Yet he fell for it anyway. When I first started there it was simply “Fairwinds Community Church” and you couldn’t find a nicer, kinder place. Right around the time this questionnaire would have been printed they changed their name to identify themselves as fundies. This happened along about the time “Evangelist” Darrell Dunn brought his nonsense and legalistic bondage to this church and wrecked the place. It was never the same again. They got Waaaay out there in fundie land for a long time. They’ve swung back to the center a bit but the sad part is that while they’ve relaxed on the micromanaging of the lives of their members…they still, deep down, feel the need to work their butts off to get Jesus to like them. This is one of the mose loving, generous, community-feeling congregations you’ll ever meet and yet they still couldn’t look you in the eye and tell you “Jesus is simply mad about me!”
    The Pastor listed above started this church as a VBS in his living room. They just celebrated 60 years. he is a wonderful man, 92 years old now, and he’s softened a lot. His son in law is now the pastor…he’ll never be anything less than a fundie. I like him and consider him a friend but he’s a fundie. If you’re asking whether these are good people…yes, very much so. Are they fundies in the Hyles / Jones mold? NO! They were at one point but not now. But they are fundies no less. Fundies who let their women wear jeans. Those who know…that says it all

      1. This adds to the misinformation you’ve already been posting. He clearly stated they were good, and this poster was indicative (as suggested by yours truly) of a swing towards awful fundamentalism, and they’ve since begun somewhat coming back to normal, but not there yet. You gotta read the actual posts & understand. It might be just lack of understanding that’s the motivation?

    1. You got a shout-out on a hover-text! Congrats!!! An honorary doctorate can’t be far behind.

      (I was on the road yesterday and couldn’t read the HT on my phone.)

  24. [This is not intended to start a Bible fight, I just can’t resist ‘answering’ as I would so dearly love to have done so back then just to traumatise the askers :razz: ]

    1. Are you or your organization with the NCC, WCC, or the NAE at home or abroad? No
    2. Do you or your organization adhere to any of the following?
    a. Eternal Security? Yes. For everyone. I don’t believe in Hell; I do believe in Heaven, and I believe everyone is going there.
    b. Tongues? No. I think. My Pentecostal upbringing is wringing its hands in consternation.
    c. The gift of healing? No. Sorry, childhood of watching Benny Hinn just to see the end-credits healing montage.
    d. Infant Baptism? Sure, why not? I don’t feel that baptism is important beyond a statement. It can work as a statement of intent by the parents (like a dedication), though I think it would be more meaningful as a statement made by the person themselves as an adult.
    e. Believer’s Baptism? Sure, why not?
    f. Baptism by Immersion? Sure, why not? Dunk ‘em, sprinkle ‘em, run through a sprinkler – if the statement is sincere, the water dispensation method is immaterial.
    g. Pre-Millenialism: Dunno. I tend to look at Revelation and go, “Did your flour go off? Do you have ergot poisoning? If not, you need to pull your metaphors way, way back, man, they’re getting away from you.”
    h. Pre-Tribulational Rapture: Nah.
    i. Ecumenical Evangelism: I . . . don’t know what that means. Are we evangelising to ecumenicals? Are we joining ecumenicals in evangelising? In North America I tend to think evangelising does more harm than good, in a sense – it can VERY easily come off as pesky, and is somewhat pointless in a society where the vast, vast, vast majority are aware of the concepts of Jesus, etc. More effective than preaching is just . . . living. Loving. And it sure doesn’t matter what denomination the person living and loving is.
    j. Theistic Evolution: Yes!!! And I’m so excited you’ve heard of it!!! I didn’t know there was a term for the belief I had come to, until my last Religious Studies class in my secular university!
    3. Do either you or your organization engage in cooperative evangelism w/organizations that work with churches or groups in the NCC, WCC, or NAE: Well, I cooperate with people on stuff. Odds are, yes.
    4. Do you agree to refrain from making any plea for money from the pulpit or in private conversation with church members? Yes. I would find it undignified *sniff*.
    5. Do you agree to refrain from procuring names for your personal mailing list unless special permission is given? Awww, nooooooo. I want people to write letters toooo. Writing letters is fuuuuuuunnnnn.
    6. Do you engage in or encourage others in any of the following:
    a. Theatre: Yes! We must support the arts!
    b. Social Drinking: Well, I don’t drink, and to be frank drunk people make me really uncomfortable, but it’s not any of my business.
    c. Smoking: Well this is a big fat No. Congratulations, questionnaire, we agree on something – it only took cancer to bring us together.
    d. Dancing: Yes. I am a firm believer in the doctrine of Everybody Dance Now.
    e. Gambling: I don’t myself, but I don’t really care. Overindulgence in gambling can be bad, though. 2 bucks on a lotto ticket? Eh, whatever.
    7. Are you involved in evangelism that results in establishing fundamental churches only? Oh God, I hope not.
    *Where is your church membership: Don’t have a church membership. I’m a free agent, baby. :cool:
    8. Do you or does your organization cooperate w/any form of the pentecostal or charismatic movement? Yes. In fact, I live with a form of the Pentecostal or Charismatic movement (hi Grama!)
    9. Are other members of your organization permitted to follow their own line of theological teaching or cooperation? Well, this question isn’t terrifying at all. Let’s just say Yes and move on.
    10. Does your organization publish a regular financial statement: No. Well, yes, because I have to tell the student loans board how much I made at work.
    11. Does your organization have a Board of Directors: Yes. I’m president, my cats are executive directors. The fluffy cat, especially, is also my executive counsellor on matters of doctrine.

    1. I believe WCC is the “World Council of Churches”, and the NAE would be (formerly Ted Haggard’s) National Association of Evangelicals. I don’t know what NCC is or was?

    2. I’m pretty sure the NCC they mean is the National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA, also known as the National Council of Churches.

      It’s an umbrella organization to which many “mainline” and Orthodox churches belong. It’s way too liberal for fundamentalists and evangelicals of a rightest political bent, and I’m sure the author of our questionnaire here would object to the very concept of a group dedicated to cooperation between Christians of different confessions.

      Here’s the web site:
      http://www.nationalcouncilofchurches.us/

  25. This sounds like fun!
    1. Are you or your organization with the NCC, WCC, or the NAE at home or abroad? No, but I have little against them.
    2. Do you or your organization adhere to any of the following?
    a. Eternal Security? Yes.
    b. Tongues? Yes.
    c. Healing? Yes.
    d. Infant Baptism? Thinking about it. It makes a lot more sense than I ever realized.
    e. Believer’s Baptism? Yes.
    f. Baptism by Immersion? Yeah, but I wouldn’t kick out somebody who got sprinkled.
    g. Pre-Millenialism: Nope.
    h. Pre-Tribulational Rapture: Entirely made up. No scriptural basis at all.
    i. Ecumenical Evangelism: Yes, depending on what you mean by ecumenical.
    j. Theistic Evolution: Absolutely.
    3. Do either you or your organization engage in cooperative evangelism w/organizations that work with churches or groups in the NCC, WCC, or NAE: Probably we ‘work with’ groups that ‘work with’ churches that are part of the NAE. How many degrees of separation is that?
    4. N/A
    5. N/A
    6. Do you engage in or encourage others in any of the following:
    a. Theatre: Engage: Yes. Encourage: Why would I care what you do with your spare money and time?
    b. Social Drinking: Engage: Yes. Encourage: Yes. The guy who wrote this could certainly use a drink.
    c. Smoking: Engage: What kind of smoking are we talking about? Encourage: Not particularly.
    d. Dancing: Engage: Sure, but only after engaging in 6.b. Encourage: Ah, whatever.
    e. Gambling: Engage: No, Encourage: No
    7. Are you involved in evangelism that results in establishing fundamental churches only? Nope.
    *Where is your church membership: Nunya.
    8. Do you or does your organization cooperate w/any form of the pentecostal or charismatic movement? Yes!
    9. Are other members of your organization permitted to follow their own line of theological teaching or cooperation? Yep.
    10. Does your organization publish a regular financial statement: Yes
    11. Does your organization have a Board of Directors: We have a Council of Elders…

      1. Makes for an entertaining riot. Hyles and even his son-in-law use to say several times how they wanted to appear on TBN and the PTL Club to “Scare the Devil out of ‘em”

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