What do for a living? How do you have so much money to give out?<quoted text>
LOL. Does your church budget biblically? Or are they like the ones mentioned in the survey? BTW my post clearly did not discriminate against funding missionaries. Since you can clearly understand that point then one must asked why you misstated what my post said?
So you extend my statement to the ridiculous (i.e. suggesting that I am arguing that missionaries live it up) and if readers buy your extension then they must reject my entire post.
Two options seem open to us: you are ignorant of logic, or you are knowledgeable about logic and think that the readers are not and so are gullible and easily manipulated.
I have no idea which of the two options you represent but would have expected you to reject my factual statements on surveys or at least represent how your church is significantly different than the ones described in my post and offer your own (albeit anecdotal) evidence.You could have also engaged my exegesis of the OT texts and suggested that these were not reasonable applications of same.
Since I support 2 missionaries currently (one for 20 years the other for 15) and have sent my own children to the mission field, and traveled for short term missions myself your point seems untenable. Better luck next time.
#708 Feb 15, 2014
#709 Feb 16, 2014
Matthew Henry's commentary on John 10 pretty much nails our current condition in the evangelical church. In various forms of spiritual waywardness from gnostic licentiousness to Judaizing legalisms and bizarre combinations of the two, many of our "pastors" have "drawn us from faith in Christ to fancies concerning him".
These are the modern day Pharisees who have "a great conceit of their own knowledge, and could not bear it should be questioned...frequently the greatest pretenders to knowledge are most ignorant in the things of God".
These are the many "hireling", Dennis McCallum/Andy Stanley/Rick Warren/Perry Noble/Mark Driscoll/Rob Bell Pied Pipers out there leading the spiritually young and gullible sheep away from "the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ" (2 Cor 11:3). They offer satanically clever, Christian-veneered, pseudo-biblical systems and methodologies/personality cults instead, guaranteed to get them a following. Like the Pharisees, these frauds adulterate the word of God (2 Cor 4:2) and are just about personal power and money. Christ and the apostles did not spare them and neither should we.
[2.] They flee from a stranger, and dread following him, because they know not his voice. It is dangerous following those in whom we discern not the voice of Christ, and who would draw us from faith in him to fancies concerning him. And those who have experienced the power and efficacy of divine truths upon their souls, and have the savour and relish of them, have a wonderful sagacity to discover Satan's wiles, and to discern between good and evil.
II. The Jew's ignorance of the drift and meaning of this discourse (v. 6): Jesus spoke this parable to them, this figurative, but wise, elegant, and instructive discourse, but they understood not what the things were which he spoke unto them, were not aware whom he meant by the thieves and robbers and whom by the good Shepherd. It is the sin and shame of many who hear the word of Christ that they do not understand it, and they do not because they will not, and because they will mis-understand it. They have no acquaintance with, nor taste of, the things themselves, and therefore do not understand the parables and comparisons with which they are illustrated. The Pharisees had a great conceit of their own knowledge, and could not bear that it should be questioned, and yet they had not sense enough to understand the things that Jesus spoke of; they were above their capacity. Frequently the greatest pretenders to knowledge are most ignorant in the things of God.
#710 Feb 16, 2014
Oh my gosh! My 16 yr old daughter got involved the same way! She has been so brainwashed by these loons that they've now convinced her that her Mother (me) is abusive, and no good ! I've raised my daughter with morals, and a good solid upbringing, but these vultures preyed on my daughter during a very vulnerable time in her life when her father and I separated 6 months ago. She isn't even the beautiful daughter I've raised for nearly 17 years. Im so scared! I need feedback! Advise from other parents. Thank you.
#711 Feb 16, 2014
Help me please! Where do I locate a "Deprogrammer" in the Columbus area? I've lost my 16 yr old daughter to this cult!!! Just in the last two weeks they've consumed her with these "Biblical Teachings" and are now training her to be a LEADER!!! She has no time for mom anymore and her personality has completely changed practically overnight! I need help and advice, and I need it fast. Im panicked.
#712 Feb 16, 2014
Kim, sadly the figureheads don't necessarily have to be living. Read up on William Branham sometime...it will creep you out.
#713 Feb 19, 2014
Xenos has a very low view of the gospel of Jesus Christ and a very high view of what they would call "friendship evangelism" ("hanging out" in McCallum-speak) which is really just using false, scalp-seeking "friendships" and group pressure to manipulate the emotions of the unsuspecting (especially young adults). It's also called "love bombing". They use this Christian-veneered cult methodology to recruit because it has been prescribed by their cult leader, Dennis McCallum.
As in any cult, the group is essentially an extension of the maximum, wholly-unaccountable leader. The little McCallum clones end up thinking, talking, heck, even walking like the guy. If he is licentious and worldly, they are. If he smokes, they smoke. If he uses foul language, so do they. If he drinks, they drink. If he thinks tattoos and piercings are a cool sign of Christian chic, tatts and gauges will be everywhere. If he arbitrarily endorses Ohio State or Columbus State as the only acceptable local colleges, well, guess where most young Xenoids will elect to go to school? If he says that a requirement for staying on the ever-accelerating "leadership" treadmill is handing over your personal financial statements, well, you expose your financials to him. If he sports a rebellious, elitist, hip and beat attitude, so does the Xenoid. His talking points are their talking points. So if you want to know what deceptions the cult has in store for the unsuspecting one only needs to listen to or examine the writings of the cult leader.
The elitist Dennis McCallum presents himself as a deep thinker, an amazing logician that the Christian world needs to turn to for answers (this is cocaine, by the way, to young adults trying to find themselves...their new Dad Dennis has all the answers and they can become elite hipster Christians like him...far removed from the stodgy Christianity of their real, benighted parents who actually love them). In his worldly self-absorption, he sees himself, and not the simple gospel, as the antidote to such things as postmodernism. This philosophy demands that truth is unknowable and anyone who dares to suggest that truth, by its very definition, is not only knowable but unchanging and the opposite of falsehood, is a dangerous bigot.
As far as I am concerned this is really nothing new and has been exhibited through the ages by advanced but decadent societies such as the Roman Empire (remember Pontius Pilate's flip remark to Christ..."What is truth" (John 18:38)? The Truth stood before the arrogant despot (John 14:6). The Truth is the Savior Jesus Christ and His gospel for which the Church through the ages was warned to never "be ashamed" (Romans 1:16). The Apostle Paul went on to warn that there would be men who would sneak into first century congregations and beyond as wolves in sheep's clothing. They would mouth fidelity to the gospel and orthodox Christian faith but were actually ashamed of and adhered to neither. They choose instead to make it about themselves, their personalities, their gnostic wisdom and reasoning abilities (Paul devotes much of 1 and 2 Corinthians to this subject!). Their modus operandi (and Dennis McCallum's) is there for all to read in 2 Timothy 3 and throughout the New Testament. They "hold to a form of godliness although they have denied its power" (the risen Christ... 2 Timothy 3:5; 2 Peter 2:1). They use their persuasive personalities and Christian-veneered methodologies to deceive and "captivate the weak" (2 Timothy 3:6), preying on the young and spiritually immature.
#714 Feb 19, 2014
To his credit, McCallum recognizes the error of postmodernism and actually starts off on the right foot discrediting it in his internet-available article The Postmodern Puzzle. But no sooner does he get started than he veers the reader off onto a Scripture-twisting false antidote: himself and his ability to bamboozle with his soaring logic and tried and true Xenos love-bombing techniques. The article is one big stinking pile of false theology. This is what a false teacher does. He brings some truth to get the unsuspecting to start drinking the Kool Aid. Then he slips in the Scripture-twisting lies to get them dependent upon him and his elitist, gnostic insights and methodologies instead of the true gospel and the risen, returning Christ. Sick.
Here is just a taste of the falsehood in his high-sounding screed, The Postmodern Puzzle:
After starting off well against postmodernism, he quickly departs orthodoxy and the gospel by misconstruing the words of Ravi Zacharias. He will spend the rest of the article trying to convince us that, despite the stubborn adherence of benighted fundies to the gospel message as the eternal cure for sin and man's darkened hearts (Romans 1:16; 1 Thessalonians 2:4-6), "...reason and science suddenly matter again". Dennis will go on to brag at least twice in this article that he "didn't share the gospel" but boy is he stoked about
--"cross-cultural communication" (page 4), in which "careless communicators" (McCallum-speak for gospel-spreading fundies) are rarely successful...and they menace all other Christians (the intellectual Xenos elite) as they (us benighted fundies)blithely offend people in the name of Christ". Yes, Dennis, the gospel message is a scandal to those who are being lost (1 Corinthians 1:18; 2 Corinthians 2:15-16) but that is not the gospel-sharers fault. You, Dennis, have a beef with God, not us fundies, for He would not have us use our various "worldly wisdoms" to sell the gospel lest we "make it of no effect" (1 Corinthians 1:17). Apologetics are fine for Christians but they and Dennis' uber logic will save no one. In fact, they will make the gospel to have "no effect". As a false teacher and only really interested in advancing himself and "peddling the world of God" (2 Corinthians 5:17), Dennis is not concerned with actually seeing anyone saved. "Saved" to him and many Xenos people is misconstrued with the process of getting recruits into the cultic McCallum "discipling" program and cult housing. That is the real "menace" here.
--"leav(ing)" people confused" (page 6) and then "really confused" (page 7). You don't think that is an effective evangelism tool as pointed out by the Apostle Paul above? The poor, naive Apostle didn't know about the uber debater Dennis McCallum! "Where is the debater of this age"? Why he is right here in the 21st century Paul! This guy is gonna bamboozle people into the Kingdom by golly! He is going to confuse people into submission and he will not "let them off the hook" (page 7) until they have
-examined the prejudices of white Americans (page 5)
-caused a postmodern to "seize up in confusion" and "internal contradictions" (page 6)
-examine the practice of " African female circumcision (page 6)
-and "consider new Guinea...headhunting" (page 7)
"What has this got to do with the gospel?", you might ask. Precisely. The pseudo-intellectual guru repeatedly brags that he will NOT share the gospel. This is about Dennis McCallum. This is about being the smartest "Christian" in the room anytime, anywhere. This is about wowing the gullible into his cult.
#715 Feb 19, 2014
--Love-bombing. This is where Dennis is at his most clever. It's often said of liberals that if you want to find out what nefarious things they are up to, just listen to what they are accusing others of. Dennis is the master at this. He finishes this self-serving piece by railing against "love bombing", the practice he and his cult have honed to perfection over the decades! You see, salvation for him involves "maintaining relationships with these people" having "thawed their thinking" through "arguments" (page 8). But the secret weapon, the irresistible force is (not the gospel...c'mon, get real!), wait for it..."the subjective, relational parts" (page 8).
You see, for Dennis McCallum, the power of God is not to be found in the simplistic gospel message. Paul and the other apostles just got it wrong. No, the power lies in Dennis' logic and "a small group of friends within a local church practicing Christian community"(preferably in Xenos cult housing)...because "a loving atmosphere is the ideal environment where truth can be considered with a favorable attitude" (page 9). Really?!!! The Holy Spirit needs the wine and cheese of Xenoid "Conversation and Cuisine" (page 11) to do His holy work of "convicting the world of sin, righteousness and judgment" (John 16:8)? That would rule out foxhole and deathbed conversions for starters, but also the vast majority of conversion testimonies I have heard.
The bottom line is that God does not need any of us for this work of evangelism. In fact, like Dennis McCallum and the manipulative friendship evangelism of his cult, we may frequently get in the way, making the saving message of the gospel of Christ to "have no effect" (1 Corinthians 1:17). All He invites us to do is be conduits for Him to generously spread the gospel message as we walk through all facets of life. Christians are to have their "feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace" (Ephesians 6:15), not wait to be sipping wine and munching cheese as we manipulate the unsuspecting with our love-bombing.
That is why Dennis and all the Xenos people I have ever talked to hate gospel tracts. That is why Xenos people actually say "there is little point in sharing the gospel with people if you are not going to 'disciple' them (in Xenos cult methodologies). Dennis and they have no confidence in the power of the unadulterated gospel message. However, they have infinite, biblically unfounded confidence in their legalistic, elitist system, reasoning abilities and love-bombing.
Like I said, after bashing love bombing as "manipulative" (which it certainly is)(page 9), Dennis McCallum goes on to endorse it repeatedly while pulling out all the stops in manipulating Scripture to supposedly support his brilliant methodologies. He is a stunning hypocrite!
He says we have been commissioned by Christ to use reasoning methods to defend "the hope within us" (page 9)(1 Peter 3:15). No, "He (actually)has committed to us the word (gospel) of reconciliation" (2 Corinthians 2:5). This is not some minor distinction. If you have a low view of the gospel you quote what you think is a verse that supports your debating skills not the unadulterated power of the gospel.
#716 Feb 19, 2014
Dennis says that our debating skills are necessary because Colossians 4:6 says to have your "speech always be with grace, seasoned, as it were, with salt, so that we may know how to respond to each person". Again this is not the Apostle Paul endorsing worldly wisdom in preaching the gospel which he has already warned us would "make the cross to have no effect". This verse is about Christian wholesomeness of speech and conversation which is contrary to the manner of many in Xenos who are better known for their cursing and coarse, worldly speech and music.
Dennis claims that the Apostle Paul was endorsing "Western-style modernistic rationalism " when he wrote "Knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade men" (2 Corinthians 5:11)(page 10). Poppycock! As he was doing throughout the book of 2 Corinthians, Paul was attempting to persuade the Corinthians of his legitimate apostleship as opposed to the false teachers like Dennis McCallum who slandered and misquoted him to that local church. Again, this verse is no grounds to make the gospel "of no effect" by "persuading" and manipulating people with our personalities, intellects, and love-bombing. Paul would have harsh words for Dennis McCallum just as he did the Scripture-twisting false teachers of his day.
In The Postmodern Puzzle, Dennis McCallum reveals, in his own words, just how far from orthodox Christianity he has always been. He reveals himself to be a bona fide false teacher who needs to repent, not be leading a "church". Like the false shepherds of the first century, he has left a trail of deluded, beaten, sheep. He does not really follow the Good Shepherd. He does not "care for the perishing, seek the scattered, heal the broken, or sustain the one standing." Instead he devours the flesh of the fat sheep and tears off their hoofs" (Zechariah 11:17). Much of the evangelical church in central Ohio know the stories (the reason for this blog site) and know where the bodies are buried. Dennis McCallum has built his "church" on the wreckage of unsuspecting young people who were seduced by this "church of rebellion" as his Baptist minister father used to call it. It's time for more leaders in the local evangelical church to speak out about the atrocities committed in the name of this dark cult leader.
#717 Feb 20, 2014
Sorry, Anon...I tried to publish my comments in the crayola font but it wasn't available. If you have no biblical basis for what you are posting and are frustrated by the fact that others do, perhaps it is because you are ignorant. I am the iconoclast here. You took my comments out of context and didn't reply to the fact that what your church does might not be in accord with Biblical mandates. Or perhaps you don't believe in the Bible? Or are ignorant of its claims.
I am helping people get a balanced view of Xenos. And how Christ works through the body. What is the percentage your church spends on the poor and needy? Seems if your church were different than the norm you would have told us already! Instead you fall back on ad hominem arguments and name calling.
I smell a Pharisee!
#718 Feb 20, 2014
Have been very fortunate. Run a Consulting Practice for a Global 50 Company. Live in a house that has less value (especially since 2008) than I make in most years. That said...I am called to be a steward and was taught that lesson at Xenos! Scriptures are seem clear on this point. I have not posted much on it as it riles the typical armchair Evangelicals (see Anon's posts and you will get my point). No one coming out of Xenos is an consumerist Christian just sitting in a pew, or lacks an understanding of stewardship. That is why I am so strident to draw the line of demarcation around the manipulative behavior and not the theology (especially not stewardship where Xenos is Expemplar).
#719 Feb 20, 2014
One hardly knows where to begin...So tell me how your really feel about Dennis! LOL. For those who have read through this entire BLOG since page 1 ( you poor SOBs) know that Mike is expressing a deep wound. Sounds like you have been all in as I have. And not for just for 7 years either. I do not share the view that Dennis is teaching false teaching. But Xenos does teach the doctrine of the only College you should go to is one within driving distance to Cleveland and 270 or one homegroup. And they do lovebomb people, and manipulate and lord over people in violation of the scriptures. It has always puzzled me why God either allow or actually raises up leaders that are so immature as Dennis or guys like Rod Parsley.
I hope you are able to get past all the crap and take the things that are valuable from your experience at Xenos and spread it to others.
#720 Feb 20, 2014
Brenda, I was touched by your message. If you read back over the blog you will find that those who have been involved with Xenos for years and left actually represent this Church as having Biblical rather than cultic theology (not all but most). The scary posts are mostly from people that have not attended (although not all). I attended Xenos for 7 years. Your child is Not in danger. That said she may be trying to answer the questions of where did I come from? How do I get meaning? How do I live my life? And where do I go when I die?
Your daughter is getting the answers from people her age. In a very casual style and conversation. These answers are coming from the Bible ( hardly controversial). I would advise engaging in conversation with her. Questions like what are you learning? How does that new knowledge impact your decisions for college, career, dating, etc.? Might be good places to start.
If you want to deprogram her, to what end? That she become a materialist? What about a naturalist...Carl Sagan, anyone? Maybe a hedonist, Bill Clinton anyone? Granted if she is easily manipulated and historically an outsider she will pulled into this church. However, if she has this experience and learns how to assert herself, she will gain biblical understanding and great friendships and sacrifice very little.
To be frank Rod Parsley's World Harvest parishoners are in much greater need of deprograming than anyone coming out of Xenos. And a majority of the mainline denominations never address the questions outlined above.
I have two daughters and a son ages 19 to 26. I would not have been afraid if as 16 years olds they had the same experience your daughter is having. That said, I would stay close and help your daughter remain sensitized to manipulation. 1 Peter 5:3 rules the day.
#721 Feb 20, 2014
Curious, how did you manage the courage to leave Xenos? As many people have commented on here, this place is cult like but not a cult. The brainwashing that occurred must have imprisoned your mind . You were probably dependent on the people you met there for intellectual, spiritual, and emotional support. It would be hard to leave all this behind and start over with another church. Has the baggage that this church has given you affected your relationship with the Lord or other Christians?
#722 Feb 21, 2014
There is significant intellectual freedom here surprisingly. Having already been steeped in theology and philosophy (due to upbringing) it was very easy to engage the leadership and ideas. Even at age 19 I found that the majority of eldors to be very approachable about theological ideas. Majority of home group leaders are Not intellectuals but have solid training on a host of subjects.
If one is insecure an uneducated when they first come to Xenos, there seems(understandably) to be a much stronger dependency. I didn't have either trait and it took me all of a week to decide to leave Xenos after 7 years. I have maintained a number of friendships but God clearly had things for me to do at my next church that I could not have done at Xenos. No baggage. And courage as never been a problem (fools rush in...was written about me).
#723 Feb 21, 2014
It is amazing to me that people find a post on sacrificing worldly posse ions to support ministry to the poor and missionaries to be Nuts, Clueless , and that they disagree. Clearly there are some individuals that have not interacted with the NT on this site. Hope they are not calling themselves Christians. If Atheism holds true however, my position would be Nuts. But why would atheist be visiting this sight?
#724 Feb 22, 2014
When a man chooses a bad leader for his soul, at the end of all bad leadership there is a ditch.
A man teaches error which he declares he has drawn from Scripture, and he backs it up with texts perverted and abused. If you follow that error, and take its teacher for a leader, you may for a time be very pleased with yourself for knowing more than the poor plain people who keep to the good old way, but, mark my word, there is a ditch at the end of the error. You do not see it yet, but there it is, and into it you will fall if you continue to follow your leader.
At the end of error there is often a moral ditch, and men go down, down down, they scarce know why, till presently, having imbibed doctrinal error, their moral principles are poisoned, and like drunken men they find themselves rolling in the mire of sin.
At other times the ditch beyond a lesser error may be an altogether damnable doctrine. The first mistake was comparatively trifling, but, as it placed the mind on an inclined plane, the man descended almost as a matter of course, and almost before he knew it, found himself given over to a strong delusion to believe a lie.
The blind man and his guide, whatever else they miss, will be sure to find the ditch, they need no sight to obtain an abundant entrance into that.
Alas! to fall into the ditch is easy, but how shall they be recovered? I would earnestly entreat especially professing Christians, when novelties of doctrine come up, to be very cautious how they give heed to them. I bid you remember the ditch.
A small turn of the switch on the railway is the means of taking the train to the far east or to the far west: the first turn is very little indeed, but the points arrived at are remote.
There are new errors which have lately come up which your fathers knew not, with which some are mightily busy, and I have noticed when men have fallen into them their usefulness ceased. I have seen ministers go only a little way in speculative theories, and gradually glide from latitudinarianism into Socinianism or Atheism. Into these ditches thousands fall. Others are precipitated into an equally horrible pit, namely, the holding nominally of all the doctrines in theory and none of them in fact.
Men hold truths nowadays with the bowels taken out of them, and the very life and meaning torn away. There are members and ministers of evangelical denominations who do not believe evangelical doctrine, or if they do believe it they attach but little importance to it; their sermons are essays on philosophy, tinged with the gospel. They put a quarter of a grain of gospel into an Atlantic of talk, and poor souls are drenched with words to no profit.
God save us from ever leaving the old gospel, or losing its spirit.
#725 Feb 22, 2014
Seriously? "Sight?" You mean "site" right?
#726 Feb 24, 2014
I want to share my experience with Xenos (I am not in the USA, but in another country where they have a division)
1) they don't name their church and call themselves mere Christians, when actually being Xenos Fellowship. 2) they believe they will go to paradise if they once repent and accept Jesus...I find that strange. Who may be sure he is going to paradise? 3) they rent a flat of two rooms but live 4 persons in one room. I thought that is because they want to save money on rent, but I looked on American cites and found out it is common behavior of them, because "a man should not stay alone". As a result, they have no private space and private thoughts, they think as a collective head. They don't tell about the religious reason of this rite. 4) they have strange system of adopting new members - only leaders invite the new ones, but they don't tell about it. 5) they are divided into leaders (elders) and "common", who don't know what leaders believe in or do. 6) the leaders leave their homes and parents to live together. I thought they just want to live separately to be independent, but it happens the other reason. 7) they have gender segregation: men teach men, women teach women, that is called discipleship. They believe it is dangerous if a men gets close to a women during the discipleship. 8) when I cried and told I had some problems, all there men leaders quickly stood up and left me alone, explaining afterwards that I am a women and should not express my feelings to man, because"it is written in the Bible" and they acted according to the bible. That very thing is evidently sectarian belief. They say they were taught these way. Taught by whom? no idea again.
#727 Feb 24, 2014
I should notice they were NEVER Anti-Semitic and didn't teach that Jews never suffered from holocaust.
But still I find many strange issues among them. Love bombing? what a term, really. It was when they were doing to me as well.
I am in a difficult state right now, being embarrased and frightened.
I have a mental disorder (phobias) and McCallum wrote in his book "Spiritual Relationships that Last" that people like me are hardly fit for christian marriage, he also teaches in this book that survivors of incest should forgive their abuser and maintain relations with him, which is totally devastating. I am myself a survivor of child sexual abuse and feel totally degraded by his thoughts. Who is he to judge? He is touching upon the area he has no idea about and he does not think how hurtful his words may sound.
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