It should be noted that this glossary is in no way exhaustive. In fact, it is a work in progress that will be added to on a regular basis. The information has been gleaned from a multitude of sources and we hope that it proves to be useful to you. Should you find a term or phrase elsewhere that you believe is worthy of being placed here, please don’t hesitate to let me know. This is quite an undertaking and the learning curve is always a challenge.
Abundant life – is a term used to refer to Christian teachings on fullness of life. It is not an organized movement or a unique doctrine, but a name applied to the teachings and expectations of the groups and people who follow the teachings. Abundant life teachings may include expectations of prosperity and health, but may also include other forms of fullness of life when faced with adverse circumstances.
Abundant life for a person begins with a new birth, a new relationship with God, new motivations, and a new relationship with mankind. The process of Christian maturity for that person continues with learning to live abundantly, being cleansed from sin, and learning to fight spiritual battles. Christian salvation and maturity is not reliance on the self-efforts of rituals, devotion, meditation, good works, asceticism, and self-control over desires, but by believing in the redemption from sin through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Through faith in divine agency, the working of the Holy Spirit, God transforms a person’s desires to be more in conformity with God’s will (Ephesians 2:8–10, Romans 12:1–2).
Abundant life teaches prosperity and health for the total human being, including the body, mind, emotions, relationships, material needs, and eternal life. The Bible, the good news (Christianity), and salvation are essential elements of those teachings. Other elements are faith, prayer, evangelism, and concern for human worth in the areas of spiritual oppression, poverty, disease, hunger, injustice, and ignorance. In order for these teachings to have an impact on a person’s fullness of life, it is essential for that person to align their goals with God’s goals.
Abundant life teachings may include expectations of physical and material prosperity and good health and well-being, but may also include other forms of fullness of life, including eternal life, when persecuted or suffering. For a Christian, fullness of life is not measured in terms of “fun” and “living large,” or in terms of wealth, prestige, position, and power, but measured by fulfilled lives of responsibility and self-restraint, and the rewards and blessings that accrue over a lifetime of pleasing God. According to the Abundant Life interpretation, Bible has promises of wealth, health, and well-being, but these promises are conditional promises. According to James 1:17, God gives only good and perfect gifts, so God only gives gifts and blessings that are compatible with that person’s abilities and God’s goals for that person. This interpretation raises serious issues and presents a condemning and discriminating view of poor or disabled Christians in the apostolic times and throughout history.
The source of abundant life is identified as the Spirit of God in Galatians 5:22-23, “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance”. A Christian is a person who has the Spirit of God (Romans 8:9) received according to the Biblical formula (Acts 2:38). Becoming a Christian means a change to a different way of life with a different purpose. Fulfilling this purpose and experiencing abundant life go together, as described by Matthew 6:33, “But seek you first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”
Amillennialism – a view in Christian end-times theology named for its rejection of the theory that Jesus Christ will have a thousand-year-long, physical reign on the earth. This is in opposition to premillennial and some postmillennial interpretations of chapter 20 of the Book of Revelation.
In contrast, the amillennial view holds that the thousand years mentioned in Revelation 20 is a symbolic number, not a literal description; that the millennium has already begun and is identical with the current church age, (or more rarely, that it ended with the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 — see Preterism). Amillennialism holds that while Christ’s reign during the millennium is spiritual in nature, at the end of the church age, Christ will return in final judgment and establish a permanent physical reign.
Amillennialism teaches that there will not be a future “millennium” in which Christ will reign on earth prior to the Second Coming but rather
- that Jesus is presently reigning from heaven, seated at the right hand of God the Father,
- that Jesus also is and will remain with the church until the end of the world, as he promised at the Ascension,
- that at Pentecost, the millennium began, as is shown by Peter using the prophecies of Joel, about the coming of the kingdom, to explain what was happening,
- and that, therefore the Church and its spread of the good news is Christ’s Kingdom.
Anabaptist – derived from the Greek term anabaptista, or “one who baptizes over again.” This name was given them by their enemies in reference to the practice of “re-baptizing” converts who “already had been baptized” (or sprinkled) as infants.Anabaptists required that baptismal candidates be able to make their own confessions of faith and so rejected baptism of infants. The early members of this movement abhorred the name “Anabaptist”, claiming that since infant baptism was unscriptural and null and void, the baptizing of believers was not a “re-baptism” but in fact the first baptism for them.
Antichrist – The figure who acts as Satan’s lead agent on earth during the end times. Most Christian scenarios predict the Antichrist — a sort of evil twin of Jesus in many ways — will forge a one-world government through promises of peace. When Jesus returns, he will expose the Antichrist as an impostor, defeat him in the battle of Armageddon, and reign with the Christian martyrs for a thousand years on earth.
Apostolic – the fourth mark of the Church, the others being “One”, “Holy” and “Catholic”, contained in the Nicene Creed, which is an exposition of faith accepted by most self-identifying ChristianChurches and communions.
Apostolic may refer to; An Apostle meaning one sent on a mission
- The Twelve Apostles of Jesus, or something related to them, such as the Church of the Holy Apostles
- Apostolic succession, the doctrine connecting the Christian Church to the original Twelve Apostles
- The Apostolic Fathers, the earliest generation of post-Biblical Christian writers
- The Apostolic Age, the period of Christian history when Jesus’ apostles were living
- The Apostolic Constitutions, part of the Ante-Nicene Fathers collection.
Apocalypticism – a trend found within Judaism, Christianity, and Islam almost exclusively, and that can be described broadly as a theological emphasis on a climactic end of the world in which divine intervention–e.g. a divine judgment of all people, a divinely-led battle, a divine endorsement of a new world, etc.–plays a role. The Christian Right is particularly influenced by an apocalypticism common among conservative Evangelicals, Fundamentalists, Pentecostals, and most Protestants in the Charismatic movement, in which the End Times concludes with the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.
Apocalypticism is usually marked by distinctive apocalyptic rhetoric and, often, symbolism. Within the Christian Right, such rhetoric tends to focus on the role of the modern nation of Israel, notions of an Antichrist who will lead a worldwide movement against Christians, and increasingly belief in a divine role for the United States in End Times. Throughout Christian history in particular, apocalyptic rhetoric has been used by both progressives and conservatives, reformers and reactionaries, and has echoed radically different themes, including during the Middle Ages the idea that Natives Americans were the “lost tribe” of ancient Israel and the idea of the destruction of the Church and its priesthood as a divine calling for the poor; (see Norman Cohn’s The Pursuit of the Millennium). In recent decades, progressive Christians use of apocalyptic rhetoric is less common, generally metaphorical, and focuses more often (though not always) on themes of unification, reconciliation, and harmony instead of destruction.
Note. Through the influence of the Christian Right, belief in an apocalypse has affected American domestic and foreign policies on issues ranging from the environment to Israel. Many on the Christian Right believe it is biblically prophesied that key events will occur during the End Times in Israel. Apocalypticism among many conservative Protestants leads many of them (with those ascribing to Dominion Theologies being notable exceptions) to have a pessimistic or fatalistic view of the futures of humanity and the Earth.
Note. Apocalyptic thought almost always include:
1) a target (i.e. some place, race, class, nation, group, person, etc. is focused on; throughout Christian history apocalyptic thought most commonly targeted Jews as agents of evil)
2) the purgation of the target (i.e. the target is or will be cleansed, destroyed, or otherwise dramatically affected by fire, water, magic, divine power, human might, etc.);
3) historicity (i.e. the apocalypse happens at least in part within the context of human history–in real time and space, not in some heavenly realm or other place or reality that could not be observed by human beings).
One example of the above three elements is in the End Times apocalypticism of Protestant Christianity as mentioned above, in which a prerequisite for the Second Coming of Jesus is the destruction of the Antichrist and all non-Christians following the Battle of Armaggedon.
Apocalyptic – Referring to the belief that the end of the world as we know it is approaching, usually through a sudden, catataclysmic transformation. Comes from the Greek word apocalypses meaning “the lifting of a veil,” or a revelation. Also the name given to a specific genre of prophetic literature, of which the book of Revelation is best known. Western apocalyptic traditions tend to be dualistic, in that they view this end as the final outcome of an ongoing battle between good and evil forces, usually represented by God and Satan.
Apologetics – (from Greek ἀπολογία, “speaking in defense”) is the discipline of defending a position (often religious) through the systematic use of information. Early Christian writers (c. 120–220) who defended their faith against critics and recommended their faith to outsiders were called apologists.
Armageddon – The geographic location given in the book of Revelation (16:16) for the climactic battle between Christ and Antichrist, with Christ’s victory ushering in his thousand-year reign on earth. Named after the hill near the town of Megiddo in Palestine, which due to its strategic location overlooking major military and trade routes was the site of many ancient battles.
Argument of Free Will – (also called the paradox of free will, or theological fatalism) contends that omniscience and free will are incompatible, and that any conception of God that incorporates both properties is therefore inherently contradictory. The argument may focus on the incoherence of people having free will, or else God himself having free will. These arguments are deeply concerned with the implications of predestination, and often seem to echo the standard argument against free will.
Arminianism – based on the theological ideas of the Dutch Reformed theologian Jacobus Arminius (1560–1609) and his historic supporters known as the Remonstrants.
It is known as a soteriological sect of Protestant Christianity.
- election (and condemnation on the day of judgment) was conditioned by the rational faith or nonfaith of man;
- the Atonement, while qualitatively adequate for all men, is efficacious only for the man of faith;
- unaided by the Holy Spirit, no person is able to respond to God’s will;
- grace is resistible; and
- believers are able to resist sin but are not beyond the possibility of falling from grace.
Ascension – the Christian teaching found in the New Testament that the resurrected Jesus was taken up to heaven in his resurrected body, in the presence of eleven of his apostles, occurring 40 days after the resurrection. In the biblical narrative, an angel tells the watching disciples that Jesus’ second coming will take place in the same manner as his ascension.
Atonement – In theology, atonement is a doctrine that describes how human beings can be reconciled to God. In Christian theology the atonement refers to the forgiving or pardoning of sin through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, which made possible the reconciliation between God and creation. Within Christianity there are, historically, three or four main theories for how such atonement might work:
- The ransom theory/Christus Victor (which are different, but generally considered together as Patristic or “classical”, to use Gustaf Aulen‘s nomenclature, theories, being argued that these were the traditional understandings of the early Church Fathers);
- The moral influence theoy, which Aulen considered to be developed by Peter Abelard (called by him the “idealistic” view),
- The satisfaction theory developed by Anselm of Canterbury (called by Aulen the “scholastic” view),
- The penal substitution theory (which is a refinement of the Anselmian satisfaction theory developed by the Protestant Reformers, especially John Calvin, and is often treated together with the satisfaction view, giving rise to the “four main types” of atonement theories – classical or patristic, scholastic, and idealistic – spoken of by Aulen).
Avengelical – Pun on the word “evangelical”; used for wrathful, denunciatory, punitive and coercive religious views held by individuals or groups, particularly those which favor establishment of theocratic governing principles for society.
Babylon – Ancient city of Babylonia; a city devoted to materialism and sensual pleasure; In Dominionist circles it is used to denote any place they consider “evil” or “corrupt.”
Backsliding – also known as falling away, is a term used within Christianity to describe a process by which an individual who has converted to Christianity reverts to pre-conversion habits and/or lapses or falls into sin, when a person turns from God to pursue their own desire.In Christianity, within denominations which teach Arminianism, such as the Methodist Church and Pentecostal Holiness Church, as well as in the Roman Catholic Church backsliding is a state in which any free willed believer can adopt, which is a doctrine rejected by Calvinists. In these denominations, it is taught that the backslidden individual is in danger of Hell if he does not repent. Historically, backsliding was considered a trait of the Biblical Israel which would turn from the Abrahamic God to follow idols. In the New Testament church, the story of the Prodigal Son has become a representation of a backslider.
Biblical Inerrancy – the doctrine that the Bible, in its original manuscripts, is accurate and totally free from error of any kind; that “Scripture in the original manuscripts does not affirm anything that is contrary to fact”. Some equate inerrancy with infallibility; others do not.
Biblical Law – Laws found in the Hebrew Bible and New Testament. Interpretations about which laws are still in effect and by what means they are applicable vary between different groups. Many Christian groups believe Jesus brought a new covenant which supercedes the laws of the Hebrew Bible. Others believe that the Old Covenant between God and Israel was transferred to the Church. Dominionist groups often argue that secular laws are based on, or should be based on Biblical law. Note that Jewish interpretations often differ significantly with Christian interpretations due to Jewish belief in the Oral Law.
Bible-believing Chrisitians – Often used by the Christian Right to describe themselves, as opposed to liberal, moderate, “modernist” and Mainline Christians that, in their view, are not faithful in their interpretations of the Bible, or lack thereof.
Born Again – A spiritual rebirth in Evangelical or Pentecostal context. It denotes a intense conversion experience based on the third chapter of John. In becoming born again, one accepts and professes Jesus Christ as their “personal Lord and saviour”. The term Born Again Movement has been used to describe an overlapping, though not identical movement of the Christian Right. Whereas the Christian Right denotes an intrinsically political movement, the Born Again Movement is not usually used to imply any kind of political involvment.
Chiliasm – The belief that the righteous will enjoy their rewards here on Earth. In Christianity, this has meant belief in the millennium, Christ’s thousand-year reign on earth. From the Greek chilioimeaning “thousand.”
Calvinism – A form of Protestant Christian theology stressing that only a limited number of people are predestined to salvation. Within Calvinism, those who are predestined for salvation, or elect, are often referred to as “Sheep,” whereas those who are predestined to be condemned as sinners are referred to as “Goats.” Within Protestantism, Calvinism is largely considered to be opposed by the doctrine of Armenianism.
While the Reformed theological tradition addresses all of the traditional topics of Christian theology, the word Calvinism is sometimes used to refer to Calvinist views on soteriology and predestination, which are summarized in the five points of Calvinism. Some have also argued that Calvinism as a whole stresses the sovereignty or rule of God in all things – in salvation but also in all of life.
The central assertion of these points is that God saves every person upon whom he has mercy, and that his efforts are not frustrated by the unrighteousness or inability of humans.
- “Total depravity,” also called “total inability,” asserts that as a consequence of the fall of man into sin, every person is enslaved to sin. People are not by nature inclined to love God but rather to serve their own interests and to reject the rule of God. Thus, all people by their own faculties are morally unable to choose to follow God and be saved because they are unwilling to do so out of the necessity of their own natures. (The term “total” in this context refers to sin affecting every part of a person, not that every person is as evil as they could be). This doctrine is derived from Augustine’s explanation of Original Sin. While the phrases “totally depraved” and “utterly perverse” were used by Calvin, what was meant was the inability to save oneself from sin rather than being absent of goodness. Phrases like “total depravity” cannot be found the Canons of Dort, and the Canons as well as later Reformed orthodox theologians arguably offer a more moderate view of the nature of fallen humanity than Calvin.
- “Unconditional election” asserts that God has chosen from eternity those whom he will bring to himself not based on foreseen virtue, merit, or faith in those people; rather, his choice is unconditionally grounded in his mercy alone. God has chosen from eternity to extend mercy to those he has chosen and to withhold mercy from those not chosen. Those chosen receive salvation through Christ alone. Those not chosen receive the just wrath that is warranted for their sins against God.
- “Limited atonement,” also called “particular redemption” or “definite atonement”, asserts that Jesus’s substitutionary atonement was definite and certain in its purpose and in what it accomplished. This implies that only the sins of the elect were atoned for by Jesus’s death. Calvinists do not believe, however, that the atonement is limited in its value or power, but rather that the atonement is limited in the sense that it is intended for some and not all. Hence, Calvinists hold that the atonement is sufficient for all and efficient for the elect. The doctrine is driven by the Calvinistic concept of the sovereignty of God in salvation and their understanding of the nature of the atonement.At the Synod of Dort, both sides agreed that the atonement Christ’s death was sufficient to pay for all sin and that it was only efficacious for some (it only actually saved some). The controversy centered on whether this limited efficacy was based on God’s election (the view of the Synod and of later Reformed theologians) or on the choice of each person and God’s foreknowledge of that choice (the view of Arminius).
- “Irresistible grace,” also called “efficacious grace”, asserts that the saving grace of God is effectually applied to those whom he has determined to save (that is, the elect) and overcomes their resistance to obeying the call of the gospel, bringing them to a saving faith. This means that when God sovereignly purposes to save someone, that individual certainly will be saved. The doctrine holds that this purposeful influence of God’s Holy Spirit cannot be resisted, but that the Holy Spirit, “graciously causes the elect sinner to cooperate, to believe, to repent, to come freely and willingly to Christ.”
- “Perseverance of the saints” (or preservation) of the saints (the word “saints” is used to refer to all who are set apart by God, and not of those who are exceptionally holy, canonized, or in heaven) asserts that since God is sovereign and his will cannot be frustrated by humans or anything else, those whom God has called into communion with himself will continue in faith until the end. Those who apparently fall away either never had true faith to begin with or will return to the faith.
Cessationism – In Christian theology, Cessationism is the view that the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit, such as speaking in tongues, prophetic utterances and faith healing, ceased being practiced early in Christian Church history. Cessationists generally believe that the miraculous gifts were provided only for the foundation of the Christian Church, during the time between the coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost, c. 33 AD, as described in the 2nd Chapter of Acts, and the fulfillment of God’s purposes in history, usually identified as either the completion of the last book of the New Testament (Book of Revelation), or the death of John the Apostle, the last of the Twelve Apostles.
Charismatic Christianity – (also known as Spirit-filled Christianity) is a form of Christianity that emphasizes the work of the Holy Spirit, spiritual gifts, and modern day miracles. Practitioners are often called Charismatic Christians or renewalists. Although there is considerable overlap, Charismatic Christianity is often categorized into three separate groups: Pentecostalism, the Charismatic Movement, and neocharismatic movements. In 2011, Pentecostals and Charismatic Christians numbered over 500 million, a quarter of the world’s 2 billion Christians.
Charismatics are defined as Christians who share with Pentecostals an emphasis on the gifts of the Spirit but who remain a part of a mainline church. Also, charismatics are more likely than Pentecostals to believe that glossolalia is not a necessary evidence of Spirit baptism.
Christian Demonology – In the Gospels, particularly the Gospel of Mark, Jesus cast out many demons or evil angels from those afflicted with various ailments. He also lent this power to some of his disciples (Luke 10:17). The demons were cast out by the utterance of a name, according to Matthew 7:22, with some groups insisting the original pronunciation of the name “Jesus” be used. The demons or unclean spirits themselves were said to often recognize Jesus as the Messiah. In Matthew 12:43, Jesus taught that when demons were driven from a human, they went through dry places as disembodied spirits seeking respite, although on some occasion he would send them into a herd of swine. Through all accounts, Jesus had never failed in his exorcism of a demon.
By way of contrast, in Acts, a group of Judaistic exorcists known as the sons of Sceva attempted to cast out a powerful spirit without belief in Jesus, but failed with disastrous consequences.
Christian Identity – a label applied to a wide variety of loosely affiliated believers and churches with a white supremacist theology. Most promote a racist interpretation of Christianity. Some of the Christian Identity movement’s followers hold that non-Caucasian peoples have no souls, and can therefore never earn God’s favor or be saved. Believers in the theology affirm that Jesus Christ paid only for the sins of the House of Israel and the House of Judah and that salvation must be received through both redemption and race.
“Dual Seedliner” Christian Identity proponents—those who believe that Eve begat children by Satan as well as Adam—believe that Eve was seduced by the Snake (Satan), shared her fallen state with Adam by laying with him, and gave birth to twins with different fathers: Satan’s child Cain and Adam’s son Abel. Cain then became the progenitor of the Jews in his subsequent matings with the non-Adamic races. This is referred to as the two-seedline doctrine. This doctrine is a revival of a medieval folk belief ascribing the ancestry of legendary monsters such as Grendel to Cain.
Christian Identity proponents are Old Earth Creationists, but believe that Adamic man (who they believe was the father of the white race or Caucasians) was only created around 6,000 years ago, while they also believe that the universe, Earth is billions of years old and that non-Caucasian races were created hundreds of thousands or even millions of years ago.
Some believe that Jews are genetically compelled by their Satanic or Edomite ancestry to carry on a conspiracy against the Adamic seedline and today have achieved almost complete control of the Earth through their illegitimate claim to the white race’s status as God’s chosen people. As a general rule, Christian Identity followers adhere to the traditional orthodox Christian views on the role of women, abortion, and homosexuality, and view racial miscegenation as a sin and a violation of God’s laws as dictated in Genesis of “kind after kind.”
Christian Reconstructionism – One of the two major strains of dominionism, generally more common in postmillenialist circles. Based on the teachings of Dr. Rousas John Rushdoony. Teaches that theocracy must be established (including re-establishment of Old Testament law) in order to bring the Millenium of Christ to earth. The movement is Calvinist, Theonomist, Postmillenialist, Dominionist, and Presuppostitionalist.
Christian right – a term used in the United States to describe right-wing Christian political groups that are characterized by their strong support of socially conservative policies. Christian conservatives principally seek to apply their understanding of the teachings of Christianity to politics and public policy by proclaiming the value of those teachings and/or by seeking to use those teachings to influence law and public policy.
Christian Worldview – the framework of ideas and beliefs through which a Christian individual, group or culture interprets the world and interacts with it. Different denominations of Christianity have varying worldviews. There are varieties of particulars within the Christian worldview, and disputes of the meaning of concepts in a Christian worldview, but certain thematic elements are common in the Christian worldview.
Christianist – 1. A member of the Christian faith who seeks to use a religion of peace and tolerance for political and personal gain; 2. One who claims to be a follower of Christ and His teachings but who actively engages in acts and deeds that are contrary to His teachings. (A pastor who calls for the murder of someone whose political beliefs are disagreeable to him (or her) is a Christianist, not a Christian); 3. A member, or members of the Christian religion that uses it as a negative weapon against a person, or an entire group of people. (An anti-gay Christianist group, NOM, believes they’re protecting marriage by banning gay marriage.)
Christian Supremacy – The belief that Christianity is the only true religion and that all others are false.
Christocrat – Coined in current usage by Rev. Rod Parsley, a Christocrat is someone who shamelessly mixes religion and politics and wishes to abolish the wall separating church and state, changing our secular government into a theocracy.
Classical Apologetics – Classical apologetics is a method of apologetics that begins by first employing various theistic arguments to establish the existence of God. Classical apologists will often utilize various forms of the cosmological, teleological (Design), ontological, and moral arguments to prove God’s existence. Once God’s existence has been established, the classical apologist will then move on to present evidence from fulfilled prophecy, the historical reliability of Scripture, and the bodily resurrection of Jesus to distinguish Christianity from all other competing forms of theism.
Classical apologetics (also known as traditional apologetics) has as its distinctive feature a two-step approach to establishing a Christian worldview. Classical apologists are often hesitant to make an argument directly from miracles to the biblical God. Rather, they prefer to appeal to miracles after having already established a theistic context. Modern proponents of classical apologetics include R.C. Sproul, William Lane Craig, and Norman Geisler.
Christian philosopher Norman Geisler summarized the difference between classical and evidential apologetics in this way: “The difference between the classical apologists and the evidentialists on the use of historical evidences is that the classical see the need to first establish that this is a theistic universe…The basic argument of the classical apologist is that it makes no sense to speak about the resurrection as an act of God unless, as a logical prerequisite, it is first established that there is a God who can act” (Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics).
Conditional Security- the Arminian belief that believers are kept safe by God in their saving relationship with Him upon the condition of a persevering faith in Christ. Arminians find the Scriptures describing both the initial act of faith in Christ, “whereby the relationship is effected, and the persevering faith in Him whereby the relationship is sustained.” The relationship of “the believer to Christ is never a static relationship existing as the irrevocable consequence of a past decision, act, or experience.”Rather, it is a living union “proceeding upon a living faith in a living Savior.” This living union is captured in this simple command by Christ, “Remain in me, and I in you” (John 15:4).
Continuationism is a Christian theological belief that the gifts of the Holy Spirit have continued to this present age, specifically those sometimes called “sign gifts” such as tongues and prophecy. Continuationism is the opposite of Cessationism.
Conversionism – The belief that all human beings must be converted; a sudden and dramatic experience of God, which brings about a profound change in a person’s religious status. For example, in Protestant, evangelical Christianity, there is an emphasis on personal and emotional experience of God, and thus on the importance of a conversion.
Covenant Theology – Covenant theology (also known as Covenantalism, Federal theology, or Federalism) is a Calvinist conceptual overview and interpretive framework for understanding the overall flow of the Bible. It uses the theological concept of covenant as an organizing principle for Christian theology. The standard description of covenant theology views the history of God’s dealings with mankind, from Creation to Fall to Redemption to Consummation, under the framework of the three overarching theological covenants of redemption, works, and grace. (For a thorough discussion of this topic see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Covenant_theology)
Cultural Mandate – the divine injunction found in Genesis 1:28, in which God (YHVH), after having created the world and all in it, ascribes to humankind the tasks of filling, subduing, and ruling over the earth. It has served as a basis among both Christian and Jewish peoples for all manner of cultural activities: economic engagement, scientific inquiry, literary exploration, military expansion, and alternately, exploitative as well as conservationist responses to the natural environment.
The cultural mandate is fundamental to the theocratic ideal of Dominionism and Christian Reconstructionism (where it is often called “the dominion mandate“), but it does not by itself imply that ideal. Christian Reconstructionism seeks to establish Old Testament law as modern civil law; but the cultural mandate, per se, seeks only to discover the biblical principles which relate to the human stewardship of the earth, and of society including civil law. The connection is even more remote, between this theological motive and those who see themselves as “creating God’s kingdom on earth now,” as Kingdom Now theology seeks to do. Unlike Kingdom Now theology, the cultural mandate does not try to establish the kingdom of God on this earth, but rather presents a holistic, biblical world view that proponents believe lead to liberty and happiness.
Day Age Creationism – Day-age creationism, a type of old Earth creationism, is an interpretation of the creation accounts in Genesis. It holds that the six days referred to in the Genesis account of creation are not ordinary 24-hour days, but are much longer periods (of thousands or millions of years). The Genesis account is then reconciled with the age of the Earth. Proponents of the day-age theory can be found among both theistic evolutionists, who accept the scientific consensus on evolution, and progressive creationists, who reject it. The theories are said to be built on the understanding that the Hebrew word yom is used to refer to a time period, with a beginning and an end and not necessarily that of a 24-hour day.
The differences between the young Earth interpretation of Genesis and modern scientific theories such as Big Bang, abiogenesis, and common descent are significant. The young Earth interpretation says that everything in the universe and on Earth was created in six 24-hour days, estimated to have occurred some 6,000 years ago. Modern scientific observations, however, put the age of the universe at 13.8 billion years and the Earth at 4.6 billion years, with various forms of life, including humans, being formed gradually over time.
Deliverance Ministry – The teaching that the ills of the world are the literal responsibility of the actions of demons in opposition to the good works of God. Particular emphais is placed on a belief that the activities of evil spirits are the cause of many physical, psychological, or emotional maladies that people experience. Is highly controversial outside the dominionist community and has been termed spiritually abusive by several experts in abusive groups.
Diaspora – Diaspora literally means dispersion. Biblically, it refers to the dispersion of the Jews outside of Israel from the time of the Babylonian Captivity until now. It has also been applied to the dispersion of Christians after 70 A.D. when Rome sacked Jerusalem and thousands of Christians fled and dispersed throughout the Mediterranean area.
Dispensationalism – a theological system that teaches biblical history is best understood in light of a number of successive administrations of God’s dealings with mankind, which it calls “dispensations.” It maintains fundamental distinctions between God’s plans for national Israel and for the New Testament Church, and emphasizes prophecy of the end-times and a pre-tribulation rapture of the church prior to Christ’s Second Coming. Its beginnings are usually associated with the Plymouth Brethren movement in the UK and the teachings of John Nelson Darby.
- the dispensation of innocence (or freedom), (Gen. 2:8-17,25), prior to Adam’s fall,
- of conscience, (Gen. 3:10-18; Rom. 2:11-15), Adam to Noah,
- of government, (Gen. 9:6; Rom. 13:1), Noah to Abraham,
- of patriarchal rule (or promise), (Gen. 12:1-3; 22:17-18; Gal. 3:15-19), Abraham to Moses,
- of the Mosaic Law, (Ex. 20:1-26; Gal. 3:19), Moses to Christ,
- of grace, (Rom. 5:20-21; Eph. 3:1-9), the current church age, and
- of a literal earthly 1,000 year Millennial Kingdom that has yet to come but soon will, (Is. 9:6-7; 11:1-9; Rev. 20:1-6).
Each one of these dispensations is said to represent a different way in which God deals with man, specifically a different testing for man. “These periods are marked off in Scripture by some change in God’s method of dealing with mankind, in respect to two questions: of sin, and of man’s responsibility,” explained C. I. Scofield. “Each of the dispensations may be regarded as a new test of the natural man, and each ends in judgment – marking his utter failure in every dispensation.”
The idea of different “dispensations” may be found in the writings of some of the early church fathers, and viewing the flow of biblical history as a series of “dispensations” may be seen in some works that pre-date Darby’s dispensationalism, such as L’OEconomie Divine by Pierre Poiret (1646-1719). But these earlier works did not include the unique testing/failure motif described by Scofield or any hint of the underlying tenets of Darby’s dispensationalism.
Divine Intervention – a term for a miracle caused by a Deity’s active involvement in the human world.
Dominionism – Christian Dominionism is the belief that the United States should abandon secular democracy in favor of a Christian preferentialist government that enforces some form of biblical law, as a means of gaining and/or remaining in God’s favor. Additionally, it is centered around a specific passage in the King James Bible:
“And God blessed [ Adam and Eve ] and God said unto them, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” —Genesis 1:28 (KJV)”
However, the Dominionist does not limit his views to the United States. The ultimate goal is to acquire dominion over all nations.
Dominion Theology – Dominion Theology is a grouping of theological systems with the common belief that the law of God, as codified in the Bible, should exclusively govern society, to the exclusion of secular law, a view also known as theonomy. The most prominent modern formulation of Dominion Theology is Christian Reconstructionism, founded by R. J. Rushdoony in the 1970s. Reconstructionists themselves use the word dominionism to refer to their belief that Christians alone should control civil government, conducting it according to Biblical law.
A teaching in certain fundamentalist and pentecostal sects that teaches that the “saved” must take dominion over the earth for God. In variants linked to “deliverance ministry”, the “spiritual warfare” movement, and word-faith theology it is explicitly taught that God lost dominion over the earth due to the Fall of Man and that the “saved” must gain dominion back in all things; this variant is often termed “Kingdom Now Theology.”
Elect or Election – The word “election,” or “elect,” comes from the Greek word eklectos and occurs about 25 times in the New Testament. It signifies “to pick out, choose, to pick or choose out for one’s self, a choosing one out of many.”1 The one who does the choosing, the electing, is God.
- John 13:18, “I do not speak of all of you. I know the ones I have chosen; but it is that the Scripture may be fulfilled, ˜He who eats My bread has lifted up his heel against Me.”
- Eph. 1:4,”He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him.”
- 1 Tim. 5:21, “I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of His chosen angels, to maintain these principles without bias, doing nothing in a spirit of partiality.”
Again, there is debate within Christianity as to the means and purpose of God’s election. Some say that God elects individuals and others say He only elects nations and/or groups of people. If God elects individuals this means that God is predestining them, electing them into salvation and He is not electing others. This does not sit well with many Christians. On the other hand, some Christians state that God elects based upon a foreknowledge of what an individual will do.
End Time – (also called end times, end of time, end of days, last days, final days, or eschaton) is a time period described in the eschatologies of the dominant world religions, both Abrahamic and non-Abrahamic.
The Abrahamic faiths maintain a linear cosmology, with end time scenarios containing themes of transformation and redemption. In Judaism, the term “end of days” is a reference to the Messianic Age, and includes an in-gathering of the exiled diaspora, the coming of the mashiach, olam haba, and resurrection of the Tsadikim. In Christianity, end time is depicted as a time of tribulation that precedes the second coming of Christ, who will face the emergence of the Antichrist and usher in the Kingdom of God. In Islam, the Yawm al-Qiyāmah or Yawm ad-Din, the Day of Judgement, is preceded by the appearance of al-Mahdi atop a white stallion. With the help of Isa, Mahdi will then triumph over Masih ad-Dajjal.
The non-Abrahamic faiths have more cyclical eschatologies regarding end time, characterized by decay, redemption and rebirth. In Hinduism, end time is foretold as when Kalki, the final incarnation of Vishnu, descends atop a white horse and bring an end to the current Kali Yuga. In Buddhism, the Buddha predicted that his teachings would be forgotten after 5,000 years, followed by turmoil. A bodhisattva named Maitreya will appear and rediscover the teaching of dharma. The ultimate destruction of the world will then come through seven suns.
Since the discovery of deep time and the age of the Earth, scientific discourse about end time has centered around the ultimate fate of the universe. Theories have included the Big Rip, Big Crunch, Big Bounce, and Big Freeze.
Eschatology – The study of “last things,” or the end of human history. Although specific interpretations vary widely, most Christian eschatologies center on the belief that the just will be rewarded when God triumphs over Satan in the last days
Evangel – The Christian Gospel.
Evangelical – In Western culture today, there are many caricatures of evangelical Christians. For some, the term evangelical Christian is equivalent to “right-wing, fundamentalist Republican.” For others, “evangelical Christian” is a title used to differentiate an individual from a Catholic Christian or an Orthodox Christian. Others use the term to indicate adherence to the fundamental doctrines of Christianity. In this sense, an evangelical Christian is a believer who holds to the inspiration, inerrancy, and authority of Scripture, the Trinity, the deity of Christ, and salvation by grace through faith alone.
Evidential Apologetics – an approach to Christian apologetics emphasizing the use of evidence to demonstrate that God exists. The evidence is supposed to be evidence both the believer and nonbeliever share, that is to say you need not presuppose God’s existence.
Five Fold Ministry – a Charismatic and Evangelical Christian belief that five offices mentioned in Ephesians (Ephesians 4:11), namely that of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors (or “shepherds”) and teachers, remain active and valid offices in the contemporary Christian church.
Non-charismatic Christians may also consider these roles, and others, active and valid, but the term “fivefold ministry” is particularly associated with Pentecostal beliefs. Adherents of this ecclesiology may also affirm the continuation of the charismatic gifts in the modern church, or may hold to the concept of a “Latter Rain” outpouring of Holy Spirit gifts, while opponents commonly hold to cessationist beliefs.
Fruitful Dominion – Again we must visit the Biblical verse: “Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” – Genesis 1:28 (NKJV) In recent years this verse has come into question by many environmentalists given the Dominionist notion that concerning ourselves with environmental issues is unnecessary as God will provide, and we are moving toward the End Time.
Full Gospel – A movement that places emphasis on the gifts of the Holy Spirit and that God wills for his children to be prosperous in all areas of their lives.
Fundamentalism – Fundamentalism is defined by historian George M. Marsden in his seminal work Fundamentalism and American Culture as “militant anti-modernist Protestant evangelicalism.” Marsden explains that Christian fundamentalists were American evangelical Christians who in the 20th century opposed “both modernism in theology and the cultural changes that modernism endorsed. Militant opposition to modernism was what most clearly set off fundamentalism.” Other historians agree that militancy is a core characteristic of the movement.
Since 1930, many fundamentalist churches in North America and around the world have been represented by the Independent Fundamental Churches of America (renamed IFCA International in 1996), which holds to biblical inerrancy, the Virgin birth of Jesus, substitutionary atonement, the literal resurrection of Christ, and the Second Coming of Christ, among other doctrines.
Gap Creationism – a form of old Earth creationism that posits that the six-day creation, as described in the Book of Genesis, involved literal 24-hour days, but that there was a gap of time between two distinct creations in the first and the second verses of Genesis, explaining many scientific observations, including the age of the Earth.
Gatekeepers – Holding the belief that they are in a Spiritual War, many Christians (Paricularly those within the New Apostolic Realm) find the need to empower their people and make them what they refer to as “Gatekeepers”, and “Prophetic Intercessors.”
Gatekeepers are those who protect the church, and act on the words of the Watchmen. They serve to assist the Watchmen and the Prophetic Intercessors in the art of Spiritual Mapping. For further discussion on Gatekeepers see: http://www.birthpangs.org/articles/latterrain/gatekeepers.html
Generational Curses – Generational curses are judgments that are passed on to individuals because of sins perpetuated in a family in a number of generations. Generational curses are similar to original sin curses because they can be passed down on a generational basis. They differ in that generational curses do not impose eternal judgment. They bring judgment or bondage during an individual’s life, reducing the quality of life, until that individual addresses the sin issues that put the curses into place. “The Sins of the Father,” etc.
Gifts of the Holy Spirit – an enumeration of seven spiritual gifts originating with patristic authors, later elaborated by five intellectual virtues and four other groups of ethical characteristics. They are: wisdom, understanding, wonder and awe (fear of the Lord), counsel, knowledge, fortitude, and piety (reverence).
- wisdom: it is the capacity to love spiritual things more than material ones;
- understanding: in understanding, we comprehend how we need to live as followers of Christ. A person with understanding is not confused by the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live. The gift of understanding perfects a person’s speculative reason in the apprehension of truth. It is the gift whereby self-evident principles are known, Aquinas writes;
- counsel (right judgment): with the gift of counsel/right judgment, we know the difference between right and wrong, and we choose to do what is right. A person with right judgment avoids sin and lives out the values taught by Jesus;
- fortitude (courage): with the gift of fortitude/courage, we overcome our fear and are willing to take risks as a follower of Jesus Christ. A person with courage is willing to stand up for what is right in the sight of God, even if it means accepting rejection, verbal abuse, or physical harm. The gift of courage allows people the firmness of mind that is required both in doing good and in enduring evil;
- knowledge: with the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God. The gift of knowledge is more than an accumulation of facts;
- piety (reverence): with the gift of reverence, sometimes called piety, we have a deep sense of respect for God and the Church. A person with reverence recognizes our total reliance on God and comes before God with humility, trust, and love. Piety is the gift whereby, at the Holy Spirit’s instigation, we pay worship and duty to God as our Father, Aquinas writes;
- fear of the Lord (wonder and awe): with the gift of fear of the Lord we are aware of the glory and majesty of God. A person with wonder and awe knows that God is the perfection of all we desire: perfect knowledge, perfect goodness, perfect power, and perfect love. This gift is described by Aquinas as a fear of separating oneself from God. He describes the gift as a “filial fear,” like a child’s fear of offending his father, rather than a “servile fear,” that is, a fear of punishment. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Psalms 111:10 || Proverbs 1:7;9:10) because it puts our mindset in correct location with respect to God: we are the finite, dependent creatures, and He is the infinite, all-powerful Creator.
- The gift of wisdom corresponds to the virtue of charity.
- The gifts of understanding and knowledge correspond to the virtue of faith.
- The gift of counsel (right judgment) corresponds to the virtue of prudence.
- The gift of fortitude corresponds to the virtue of courage.
- The gift of fear of the Lord corresponds to the virtue of hope.
- The gift of Reverence corresponds to the virtue of justice.
To the virtue of temperance, no Gift is directly assigned; but the gift of fear can be taken as such, since fear drives somebody to restrict himself from forbidden pleasures.
Glossolalia – (Also known as Speaking in Tongues) – the fluid vocalizing (or less commonly the writing) of speech-like syllables that lack any readily comprehended meaning, in some cases as part of religious practice. The significance of glossolalia has varied in context, with some minorities considering it as a part of a sacred language. It is most prominently practised within Pentecostal and Charismatic Christianity but it is also practised in non-Christian religions
In Christianity, a supernatural explanation for glossolalia is advocated by some and rejected by others.
- Glossolalists could, apart from those practicing glossolalia, also mean all those Christians who believe that the Pentecostal/charismatic glossolalia practiced today is the “speaking in tongues” described in the New Testament. They believe that it is a miraculous charism or spiritual gift. Glossolalists claim that these tongues can be both real, unlearned languages (i.e., xenoglossia) as well as a “language of the spirit”, a “heavenly language”, or perhaps the language of angels.
- Cessationists believe that all the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit ceased to occur early in Christian history, and therefore that the speaking in tongues practised today is simply the utterance of meaningless syllables. It is neither xenoglossia nor miraculous, but rather learned behavior, possibly self-induced. These believe that what the New Testament described as “speaking in tongues” was xenoglossia, a miraculous spiritual gift through which the speaker could communicate in natural languages not previously studied.
Proponents of each viewpoint use the biblical writings and historical arguments to support their positions.
The Great Commission – the instruction of the resurrected Jesus Christ to his disciples that they spread his teachings to all the nations of the world. It has become a tenet in Christian theology emphasizing ministry, missionary work, evangelism, and baptism. The Apostles are said to have dispersed from Jerusalem and founded the Apostolic Sees. Among Christian eschatological views, Preterists believe that the Great Commission and other Bible prophecy was fulfilled in the first century while Futurists believe Bible prophecy will be fulfilled at the Second Coming of Christ.
Harvesting Souls – In their worldview, Dominionists believe that they must take dominion over all people of the earth. They believe they must proselytize their religion to all peoples of the earth and convert all people to Christianity. They call this “Harvesting Souls.”
Health and Wealth Gospel – Often referred to as “Prosperity Theology” – a Christian religious doctrine that financial blessing is the will of God for Christians, and that faith, positive speech, and donations to Christian ministries will always increase one’s material wealth. Based on non-traditional interpretations of the Bible, often with emphasis on the Book of Malachi, the doctrine views the Bible as a contract between God and humans: if humans have faith in God, he will deliver his promises of security and prosperity. Confessing these promises to be true is perceived as an act of faith, which God will honor.
Proponents teach that the doctrine is an aspect of the path to Christian dominion over society, arguing that God’s promise of dominion to Israel applies to Christians today. The doctrine emphasizes the importance of personal empowerment, proposing that it is God’s will for his people to be happy. The atonement (reconciliation with God) is interpreted to include the alleviation of sickness and poverty, which are viewed as curses to be broken by faith. This is believed to be achieved through visualization and positive confession, and is often taught in mechanical and contractual terms.
Prosperity theology teaches that Christians are entitled to well-being and, because physical and spiritual realities are seen as one inseparable reality, this is interpreted as physical health and economic prosperity.Teachers of the doctrine focus on personal empowerment, promoting a positive view of the spirit and body. They maintain that Christians have been given power over creation because they are made in the image of God and teach that positive confession allows Christians to exercise dominion over their souls and material objects around them.Leaders of the movement view the atonement as providing for the alleviation of sickness, poverty, and spiritual corruption; poverty and illness are cast as curses which can be broken by faith and righteous actions. There are, however, some prosperity churches which seek a more moderate or reformed paradigm of prosperity. Kirbyjon Caldwell, pastor of a Methodist mega-church, supports a theology of abundant life, teaching prosperity for the whole human being, which he sees as a path to combating poverty.
Wealth is interpreted in prosperity theology as a blessing from God, obtained through a spiritual law of positive confession, visualization, and donations. This process is often taught in almost mechanical terms; Kenneth Copeland, an American author and televangelist, argues that prosperity is governed by laws, while other teachers portray the process formulaically.Journalists David van Biema and Jeff Chu of Time have described Word of Faith pastor Creflo Dollar’s teachings about prosperity as an inviolable contract between God and humanity.
Heavenly Deception – the practice of justified lying, which is permissible because it is for good. This is one of the central doctrines of the Moon Religion. It basically says that to take from Satan what rightfully belongs to God, you may do most anything. You may lie, cheat, steal or kill.
Hell House – Haunted houses put on by churches and by individuals during Halloween which, in stead of having the spectacles one normally associates with haunted houses, hellfire sermons are preached. Often used as a form of stealth evangelism.
Holiness Standards – In the Apostolic and Pentacostal movement, these are the “standards” by which Christians should live:
Christians must have a Christ-like attitude toward others.
Galatians 5:19-23 19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
We must guard our minds from evil thoughts.
Matthew 15:18-20 18 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. 19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: 20 These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.
We must have a holy speech that is clean and honest before God and our fellow man.
Mark 10:19 Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother.
James 1:26 If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.
It matters what we see.
Psalm 101:3 I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me.
Psalm 119:37 Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity; and quicken thou me in thy way.
It matters how we dress and how we look. This includes our hair, makeup, jewelry, and our clothes.
Deuteronomy 22:5 The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God.
1 Corinthians 11:1-16 Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ. 2 Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you. 3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God. 4 Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head. 5 But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. 6 For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered. 7 For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man. 8 For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. 9 Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man. 10 For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels. 11 Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord. 12 For as the woman is of the man, even so is the man also by the woman; but all things of God. 13 Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered? 14 Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him? 15 But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering. 16 But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.
Stewardship of the Body
Our bodies are the temple of the Holy Ghost (Bernard, p. 50). This means we should abstain from things that would harm our bodies.
1 Corinthians 3:16-17 16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
1 Corinthians 6:12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.
The scriptures proclaim that marriage is between a man and a woman.
Genesis 2:24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
We should remain sexually pure and keep ourselves for marriage.
1 Corinthians 6:9-10 9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
Christians should not be violent people. We should not take a human life.
Exodus 20:13 Thou shalt not kill.
Matthew 5:39 But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
Matthew 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
Christians should be a peaceful, loving, and kind people, having joy in our lives.
It matters who we fellowship.
Matthew 18:15-18 15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. 16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. 17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican. 18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
Christians should not be friends of the world.
1 Thessalonians 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.
James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
1 John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
Worldly entertainment should be avoided. This includes anything with a worldly atmosphere.
God wants us to imitate Him. Holiness sets us apart from the world, keeping us pure and clean for God’s glory. Holiness is not just a set of rules; it is a way of life. We don’t live holy lives to earn our salvation – salvation is a free gift from God. We live holy lives because we love God and we want to please Him.
Homosexual Agenda – Homosexual agenda (or gay agenda) is a term introduced by some conservative Christians in the United States, often used disparagingly to describe the advocacy of cultural acceptance and normalization of non-heterosexual orientations and relationships. The term refers to efforts to change government policies and laws on LGBT rights related issues. The term has also been used by some social conservatives and others to describe alleged goals of LGBT rights activists, such as ‘recruiting’ heterosexuals into what they term a ‘homosexual lifestyle’
Institute on Religion & Democracy (IRD) – One of the so called “renewal” groups advocating literal interpretations of the Bible and far right social and political views, to destroy mainstream Protestant Christianity in America. Operating from within mainline Protestant denominations “renewal” groups work to sow dissension via wedge issues such as gay marriage, incite schisms, and so break apart mainstream and liberal denominations and neutralize them as an effective force in American politics.
Intelligent Design – a form of creationism promulgated by the Discovery Institute, a politically conservative think tank based in the U.S. The Institute defines it as the proposition that “certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection.” It is a contemporary adaptation of the traditional teleological argument for the existence of God, presented by its advocates as “an evidence-based scientific theory about life’s origins” rather than “a religious-based idea”. All the leading proponents of intelligent design are associated with the Discovery Institute and believe the designer to be the Christia deity.
Intelligent design was developed by a group of American creationists who revised their argument in the creation–evolution controversy to circumvent court rulings such as the United States Supreme Court’s Edwards v. Aguillard decision, which barred the teaching of “Creation Science” in public schools on the grounds of breaching the separation of church and state.
Imprecatory Prayer – prayer asking God to kill, maim, curse, send into eternal damnation, or otherwise harm an enemy. In the United States imprecatory prayer is most often invoked by both sides before an important football game. Perhaps the most well-known imprecatory prayer is found in the Bible in Psalm 109, a Psalm which generally gets overlooked by sermon-writers.
The practice seems to be increasing in popularity lately:
- Dr. Wiley Drake, of the First Southern Baptist Church of Buena Park, California, has decided to publicly “ask the children of God to go into action with imprecatory prayer” to try to get God to curse his enemies for him.
- Peter J. Peters leads his radio listeners in an imprecatory prayer against the “enemies of God” almost every show.
- Fred Phelps says an imprecatory prayer against the whole world every hour, by the sound of it.
- Psalm 109 is one of the imprecatory prayers found in the Psalms with “Pray for Obama: Psalm 109” bumper stickers and t-shirts. Probably sold through the same outlets selling WWJD trinkets.
Inaugurated eschatology is the belief in Christian theology that the end times were inaugurated in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, and thus there are both “already” and “not yet” aspects to the Kingdom of God.
Intercession – the act of interceding (intervening or mediating) between two parties. In Christian religious usage, it is a prayer to God on behalf of others.
In western forms of Christian worship, intercession forms a distinct form of prayer, alongside Adoration, Confession and Thanksgiving. In public worship, intercession is offered as prayer for the world beyond the immediate vicinity and friendship networks of the church community. As such, intercession constitutes part of the worshipping community’s engagement with otherness, as it expresses Christians’ solidarity with those who are ‘other’ than themselves. In so doing, a church both appeals to, and seeks to embody, God’s own love for the world.
Joel’s Army – a movement which largely began in pentecostal churches embracing dominion theology which have since spread to other dominionist churches (such as the Southern Baptist Convention) that explicitly preach that the “saved” are in a state of warfare against all things “worldly” or not of the church. Explicitly connected with word-faith and deliverance ministry movements. In some cases, members of these movements refer to themselves as “Godly Warriors” or as “Joel’s Army”.
Kansas City Prophets – Some of those who shaped the current Apostolic-Prophetic Movement in the United States were based in Kansas City, Missouri and became known as the “Kansas City Prophets”. Members of this group were Bill Hamon, Rick Joyner, Paul Cain, Bob Jones, Mike Bickle, James Goll, John Paul Jackson, and Lou Engle. Cain had participated in the Voice of Healing Revival initiated by William Branham during the 1950s. The Kansas City Prophets continue to be active in ministry throughout North America and are often seen and heard as speakers at charismatic Christian conferences and meetings.
Kingdom Business – a Kingdom business is a business that is “kingdom-oriented”, as a reflection of the owner. The owner of a Kingdom business desires that their business function for a greater purpose. People give their time and labor to volunteer for many good causes—and with a business, it can present financial offerings as a way to give back. A Kingdom business is goal-oriented to provide finances for the Kingdom, purely by the owner’s drive and dedication to do so. If the business is truly under His Lordship, it will be run by God’s principles and the owner(s) should be connected in some way to a personal church shepherding of their own lives.
Kingdom theology – is a system of Christian thought that elaborates on inaugurated eschatology, which is a way of understanding the various teachings on the kingdom of God found throughout the New Testament. It is often associated with the Vineyard movement. Its emphasis is that the purpose of both individual Christians and the church as a whole is to manifest the kingdom of God on the earth, incorporating personal evangelism, social action, and foreign missions.
Kingdom Now Theology – Kingdom Now Theology is a branch of Dominion Theology which has had a following within Pentecostalism. It attracted attention in the late 1980s.
Kingdom Now Theology states that although Satan has been in control of the world since the Fall, God is looking for people who will help him take back dominion. Those who yield themselves to the authority of God’s apostles and prophets will take control of the kingdoms of this world, being defined as all social institutions, the “kingdom” of education, the “kingdom” of science, the “kingdom” of the arts, etc.
Kingdom Now Theology is influenced by the Latter Rain movement, and critics have connected it to the New Apostolic Reformation, “Spiritual Warfare Christianity”, and Fivefold ministry thinking.
Kingdom Now theology should not be confused with Kingdom theology, which is related to inaugurated eschatology.
Latter Rain Movement – an influence within Pentecostalism which teaches that the Lord is pouring out His Spirit again, as He did at Pentecost, and using believers to prepare the world for His Second Coming. The Latter Rain Movement is anti-dispensational and amillennial, and many leaders of the movement embrace aberrant teachings.
Latter Rain teaching is characterized by a highly typological hermeneutic. That is, the Bible is interpreted in a symbolic, extremely stylized manner. An emphasis is placed on extra-biblical revelation, such as personal prophecies, experiences, and directives straight from God. Latter Rain doctrine includes the following beliefs:
– the gifts of the Spirit, including tongues, are received through the laying on of hands
– Christians can be demonized and require deliverance
– God has restored all the offices of ministry to the Church, including apostle and prophet
– divine healing can be administered through the laying on of hands
– praise and worship will usher God into our presence
– women have a full and equal ministry role in the Church
– denominational lines will be destroyed, and the Church will unify in the last days
– the “latter rain” will bring God’s work to completion; the Church will be victorious over the world and usher in Christ’s kingdom
Many “apostles” in the Latter Rain Movement also teach the doctrine of “the manifest sons of God.” This is a heretical doctrine which says that the Church will give rise to a special group of “overcomers” who will receive spiritual bodies, becoming immortal.
Lukewarm – Derogatory term for moderate and/or Mainline Christians because they are neither “hot” nor “cold”.
Messianism – The belief that a chosen individual holds the key to a higher truth which will lead to salvation for his followers. Extreme forms of apocalyptic belief have tended to manifest themselves through messianic figures, from Montanus in the 2nd century to David Koresh in 1993. Messiahs tend to be highly charismatic individuals prone to megalomania and violence.
Millennial – Referring to a period of 1000 years, such as the end of the second Christian millennium in the year 2000. In religious terms, anything referring to the expected thousand-year reign of Christ on earth after the events of the last days have brought an end to this world. Such a radical transformation could come at any time, although expectations tend to increase at round markers such as the year 2000. Related to chiliasm.
Millenarian – Referring to more extreme millennial expectations, in which belief in an imminent apocalyptic transformation tends to spur the faithful into action, often of a violent nature.
Mainline Protestants – The Mainline Protestant churches (which are also sometimes called “mainstream American Protestant” and “oldline Protestant“) are a group of Protestant churches in the United States that contrast in history and practice with evangelical, fundamentalist, and charismatic Protestant groups. Mainline Protestants were a majority of all churchgoers in the United States until the early 20th century, but now constitute a minority among Protestants.
Mainline churches share a common approach to social issues that often leads to collaboration in organizations such as the National Council of Churches. Because of their involvement with the ecumenical movement, mainline churches are sometimes (especially outside the United States) given the alternative label of ecumenical Protestantism. These churches played a leading role in the Social Gospel movement and were active in social causes such as civil rights and equality for women. As a group, the mainline churches have maintained religious doctrine that stresses social justice and personal salvation. Politically and theologically, contemporary mainline Protestants tend to be more liberal than non-mainline Protestants.
Megachurch – a church having 2,000 or more in average weekend attendance. The Hartford Institute’s database lists more than 1,300 such Protestant churches in the United States. According to that data, approximately 50 churches on the list have attendance ranging from 10,000 to 47,000. While 3,000 individual Catholic parishes (churches) have 2,000 or more attendants for an average Sunday Mass, these churches are not seen as part of the megachurch movement.
Moral Influence View of Atonement – that Christ’s passion was an act of exemplary obedience which affects the intentions of those who come to know about it: it is often wrongly claimed that the moral influence view originated with Abelard. In fact, Abelard restated Augustine’s view on the subject, who in turn was articulating the Christian doctrine current in his time.
Name-It-And-Claim-It Theology – The teaching that if you are faithful enough, God will give you your heart’s desires vis-a-vis material goods. Often used to justify keeping the poor poor, and to reaffirm the faithful qualities of wealth megachurch pastors.
Oneness/Oneness Pentacostalism/Oneness Theology – Oneness theology specifically maintains that God is absolutely and indivisibly one.It equally proclaims that God is not made of a physical body, but is an invisible spirit that can only be seen in theophanies (such as the burning bush) that he creates or manifests, or in the person of the incarnate Jesus Christ. In the person of Jesus, one sees the last, best, and complete theophany of God (Colossians 2:9 KJV: “For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily”).
Oneness Pentecostalism rejects all concepts of a subordination, duality, trinity, pantheon, co-equality, co-eternity, or other versions of the Godhead that assert plural gods, plural beings, divine “persons”, individuals, or multiple centers of consciousness within that Godhead. It equally denies all concepts of Jesus as anything other than fully God and fully man, together with all teachings that assert that he was merely a “good man,” high priest or prophet, rather than God himself. Oneness doctrine declares that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God, but that this happened only when he was born from Mary on Earth. It rejects the view that any person can “obtain” the status of God whether by works or by grace, maintaining that Jesus Christ did not “obtain” his status, but rather that he is the one, eternal God himself manifested in the flesh according to the Oneness Pentecostal interpretation of 1 Timothy 3:16.
Unlike Arians, who present the Son as a subordinate being to the Father, both Oneness and Trinitarians seek to establish an ontological oneness (union) between the Father and Son. Trinitarians do this by imposing distinct consciousnesses (persons) within the Divine Nature. Oneness seeks to accomplish this by attributing the distinct consciousnesses to that of the true humanity of Christ — that is to say, in a union between a truly infinite person, and a truly finite person, there will of necessity be a distinction of consciousness — yet in this distinction of consciousness there is a shared Identity (Person).
So from the Oneness view point the Son is both distinct from the Father while being one with the Father by virtue of his ontological oneness with the Father. It should be noted that both views, Oneness and Trinitarianism, resolve the issues of distinction of consciousnesses to the principle of monotheism by attributing ontological oneness of being to the Father and the Son – the difference is in what way they are distinct and in what way they are one.
Oneness Pentecostals reject the Trinity doctrine of distinct “co-equal and co-eternal persons in one triune Godhead” as an extra-Biblical invention and distortion, which dilutes true Biblical Monotheism, and also, in a sense, limits God. Oneness believers say that God can operate using an unlimited number of manifestations, not just three. However they recognize that “the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” are the great and major roles that God has carried out in man’s redemption.
Pentecostalism – Pentecostalism or Classical Pentecostalism is a renewal movement within Christianity that places special emphasis on a direct personal experience of God through the baptism with the Holy Spirit. The term Pentecostal is derived from Pentecost, the Greek name for the Jewish Feast of Weeks. For Christians, this event commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the followers of Jesus Christ, as described in the second chapter of the Book of Acts.
Like other forms of evangelical Protestantism, Pentecostalism adheres to the inerrancy of scripture and the necessity of accepting Christ as personal lord and savior. It is distinguished by belief in the baptism with the Holy Spirit as an experience separate from conversion that enables a Christian to live a Holy Spirit–filled and empowered life. This empowerment includes the use of spiritual gifts such as speaking in tongues and divine healing—two other defining characteristics of Pentecostalism. Because of their commitment to biblical authority, spiritual gifts, and the miraculous, Pentecostals tend to see their movement as reflecting the same kind of spiritual power and teachings that were found in the Apostolic Age of the early church. For this reason, some Pentecostals also use the term Apostolic or full gospel to describe their movement.
Postmellennialism – In Christian end-times theology, (eschatology), is an interpretation of chapter 20 of the Book of Revelation which sees Christ’s second coming as occurring after (Latin post-) the “Millennium”, a Golden Age in which Christian ethics prosper. The term subsumes several similar views of the end times, and it stands in contrast to premillennialism and, to a lesser extent, amillennialism.
Prayer Warrior – a term used by many evangelical and other Protestant Christians to refer to anyone who is committed to praying for others.
Within the context of Dominion theology, prayer warriors see themselves as engaged in spiritual warfare against satanic forces.
Prayer warriors may pray for individuals, or for entire states or regions. One recent development has been prayer undertaken by groups of people flying over the areas for which they wish to undertake intercession.
Sarah Palin, the Vice-Presidential candidate for the Republican Party in the 2008 U.S. presidential elections, regularly acknowledges the support of prayer warriors in her speeches and interviews, and has spoken of them as offering a “prayer shield.” As a candidate, she thanked prayer warriors for their support and spoke of divine intervention in the election as a result.
Predestination – the doctrine that all events have been willed by God. John Calvin interpreted biblical predestination to mean that God willed eternal damnation for some people and salvation for others. Explanations of predestination often seek to address the so-called “paradox of free will”, whereby God’s omniscience seems incompatible with human free will.
Premillennialism – the belief that Jesus Christ will literally and physically be on the earth for his millennial reign at his second coming. The doctrine is called premillennialism because it holds that Jesus’ physical return to earth will occur prior to the inauguration of the millennium. It is distinct from the other forms of Christian eschatology such as postmillennialism or amillennialism, which view the millennial rule as occurring either before the second coming, or as being figurative and non-temporal. For the last century the belief has been common in Christian fundamentalism.
Premillennialism is based upon what is said to be a literal interpretation of Revelation 20:1–6 in the New Testament, which describes Jesus’ coming to the earth and subsequent reign at the end of an apocalyptic period of tribulation. It views this future age as a time of fulfillment for the prophetic hope of God’s people as given in the Old Testament. Others such as the Eastern Orthodox claim that this passage of Revelation describes the present time, when Christ reigns in Heaven with the departed saints; such an interpretation views the symbolism of Revelation as referring to a spiritual battle rather than a physical battle on earth.
Presuppositionalism – a school of Christian apologetics that believes the Christian faith is the only basis for rational thought. It presupposes that the Bible is divine revelation and attempts to expose flaws in other worldviews. It claims that apart from presuppositions, one could not make sense of any human experience, and there can be no set of neutral assumptions from which to reason with a non-Christian. Presuppositionalists claim that a Christian cannot consistently declare his belief in the necessary existence of the God of the Bible and simultaneously argue on the basis of a different set of assumptions that God may not exist and Biblical revelation may not be true. Presuppositionalism is the predominant apologetic of contemporary conservative Calvinist and Reformed churches. Two schools of presuppositionalism exist, based on the different teachings of Cornelius Van Til and Gordon Haddon Clark. Presuppositionalism contrasts with classical apologetics and evidential apologetics.
Presuppositionalists compare their presupposition against other ultimate standards such as reason, empirical experience, and subjective feeling, claiming presupposition in this context is:
a belief that takes precedence over another and therefore serves as a criterion for another. An ultimate presupposition is a belief over which no other takes precedence. For a Christian, the content of Scripture must serve as his ultimate presupposition…. This doctrine is merely the outworking of the lordship of God in the area of human thought. It merely applies the doctrine of scriptural infallibility to the realm of knowing.
Critics of presuppositional apologetics claim that it is logically invalid because it begs the question of the “truth” of Christianity and the non-“truth” of other worldviews.
Preterists/Preterism – a Christian eschatological view that interprets prophecies of the Bible as events which have already happened. Daniel is interpreted as events that happened in the second century BC while Revelation is interpreted as events that happened in the first century AD. Preterism holds that Ancient Israel finds its continuation or fulfillment in the Christian church at the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. The term preterism comes from the Latin praeter, which is listed in Webster’s 1913 dictionary as a prefix denoting that something is “past” or “beyond,” signifying that either all or a majority of Bible prophecy was fulfilled by AD 70. Adherents of preterism are commonly known as preterists.
Progressive Creationism – the religious belief that God created new forms of life gradually over a period of hundreds of millions of years. As a form of old earth creationism, it accepts mainstream geological and cosmological estimates for the age of the Earth, some tenets of micobiology such as microevolution; as well as archeology to make its case. In this view creation occurred in rapid bursts in which all “kinds” of plants and animals appear in stages lasting millions of years. The bursts are followed by periods of stasis or equilibrium to accommodate new arrivals. These bursts represent instances of God creating new types of organisms by divine intervention. As viewed from the archaeological record, progressive creationism holds that “species do not gradually appear by the steady transformation of its ancestors; [but] appear all at once and “fully formed.” The view rejects macroevolution because they believe it to be biologically untenable and not supported by the fossil record, and they reject the concept of universal descent from a last universal common ancestor. Thus they attack the evidence for macroevolution, but affirm microevolution as a genetic parameter designed by the creator into the fabric of genetics to allow for environmental adaptations and survival.
Prophetic Intercessor – an intercessor is a person who by calling or by nature chooses to be a mediator on behalf of those who cannot intervene for themselves. Intercessors make requests, urge, plead, beg, counsel, discuss, risk, sacrifice, and make war on issues relating to the weaker ones, and thus they have an impact on the final outcomes for those they serve. A prophetic Intercessor is one who has a personal relationship with God and act on his behalf.
Quiverfull Movement – a movement among some conservative evangelical Protestant couples chiefly in the United States, but with some adherents in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Britain and elsewhere.It promotes procreation, and sees children as a blessing from God, eschewing all forms of birth control, including natural family planning and sterilization. Adherents are known as “quiver full”, “full quiver”, “quiverfull-minded”, or simply “QF” Christians. Some refer to the Quiverfull position as Providentialism, while other sources have referred to it as a manifestation of natalism. Currently, several thousand Christians worldwide identify with this movement, although entire Christian sects hold many beliefs correlative to those who self-identify as Quiverfull adherents.
Quiverfull authors typically organize family governance with the mother as a homemaker under the authority of her husband with the children under the authority of both. Parents seek to largely shelter their children from aspects of culture they as parents deem adversarial to their religious beliefs. Additionally, Quiverfull families strongly incline toward homeschooling and toward homesteading in a rural area. However, exceptions exist in substantial enough proportion that these latter two items are general and often idealized correlates to Quiverfull practices and not integral parts of them.
Ransom View of the Atonement, is one of the main doctrines in Christian theology related to the meaning and effect of the death of Jesus Christ. The first major theory of the atonement, the ransom theory of atonement originated in the early Church, particularly in the work of Origen. The theory teaches that the death of Christ was a ransom sacrifice, usually said to have been paid to Satan, in some views paid to God the Father, in satisfaction for the bondage and debt on the souls of humanity as a result of inherited sin. The Christian philosopher Robin Collins summarized it as follows:
Essentially, this theory claimed that Adam and Eve sold humanity over to the Devil at th time of the Fall; hence, justice required that grace pay the Devil a ransom to free us from the Devil’s clutches. God, however, tricked the Devil into accepting Christ’s death as a ransom, for the Devil did not realize that Christ could not be held in the bonds of death. Once the Devil accepted Christ’s death as a ransom, this theory concluded, justice was satisfied and God was able to free us from Satan’s grip.
Rapture – a term in Christian eschatology which refers to the “being caught up” discussed in 1 Thessalonians 4:17, when the “dead in Christ” and “we who are alive and remain” will be “caught up in the clouds” to meet “the Lord in the air”.
The term “Rapture” is used in at least two senses. In the pre-tribulation view, a group of people will be left behind on earth after another group literally leaves “to meet the Lord in the air.” This is now the most common use of the term, especially among fundamentalist Christians and in the United States. The other, older use of the term “Rapture” is simply as a synonym for the final resurrection generally, without a belief that a group of people is left behind on earth for an extended Tribulation period after the events of 1 Thessalonians 4:17. This distinction is important as some types of Christianity never refer to “the Rapture” in religious education, but might use the older and more general sense of the word “rapture” in referring to what happens during the final resurrection.
There are many views among Christians regarding the timing of Christ’s return (including whether it will occur in one event or two), and various views regarding the destination of the aerial gathering described in 1 Thessalonians 4. Denominations such as Roman Catholics, Orthodox Christians, Lutheran Christians,and Reformed Christians believe in a rapture only in the sense of a general final resurrection, when Christ returns a single time. They do not believe that a group of people is left behind on earth for an extended Tribulation period after the events of 1 Thessalonians 4:17.
Religious Liberty – The freedom to believe and practice any religion without interference by goverment and other official institutions. The Religious Right is trying to redefine the term to mean the freedom for their specific religion to mix readily with government and official institutions. The reason for the redefinition is that the rolling back of privledges that Protestant Christianity has often historically enjoyed within official institutions (such as institutionalized prayer in public schools) has been viewed as a rolling back of freedoms or rights by the Religious Right.
Religious Right – The movement generally referred to in the United States as the Religious Right came of age in the late 1970s. While the Religious Right is extremely diverse and shouldn’t be characterized in simple terms, the movement as we have come to know it is an ultraconservative religious response to the sexual revolution and other events that are seen, by Religious Right proponents, as being connected to the sexual revolution–and an attempt to effect this religious response as public policy. Their primary focus lies in the areas of Family Values, Abortion, Gay and Lesbian Rights, and pornography.
Satisfaction Theory of Atonement – beginning with Anselmian Satisfaction (that Christ suffered as a substitute on behalf of humankind satisfying the demands of God’s honor) and later developed by Protestants as penal substitution (that Christ is punished instead of humanity, thus satisfying the demands of justice so that God can justly forgive). Some have argued that the penal substitution theory of the atonement was expressed by the early church fathers, such as Justin Martyr c.100-165, Eusebius of Caesarea c.275-339, and Augustine of Hippo 354-430.
Seed Faith – Jesus is called “The Seed” (Gen. 3:15), the Word of God is designated as ” Seed ” (Luke 8:11; I Peter l:23); the growth of the believer is likened to a plant (John 15), and the evangelism of the world to a harvest (Matthew 13:30). The Principles of Seed Faith:
- God Established the Principle of the Seed and the Law of Seedtime and Harvest (Gen. 8:22)
To overcome your problems, become fruitful and reach your potential; follow God’s law of seed time.
- Give God Your Best – Then Expect His Best ( 2 Sam. 24:24)
Give to God first; generously, and of your best; then you will experience harvest from seed faith.
- God is a Good God. He Desires Only His Best for You! (Ex. 15:26)
God’s goodness is abundantly promised to those who listen and do what He says, seed faith is an example.
- God Has Unlimited Resources, and the Good News Is That He Makes Them Available to You (2 Chr. 25:9); when you give through seed faith, you put yourself into a position for increase.
- God Desires Biblical Abundance for You (John 10:10)
Believe God wants you to have abundance, and line up your highest desire with His through seed faith.
- God Expects You to Receive a Harvest from Your Giving. He Wants Us to Expect a Miracle Return! (Luke 6:38)
Our seed faith giving is not a debt we owe but a seed we sow, and giving and receiving go together.
- God Has a Due Season for All of the Seeds You Plant – Good Seeds As Well As Bad Seeds (Gal. 6:7-9)
- Your Giving Proves God, Opens the Windows of Heaven to You, and Causes the Devourer to Be Rebuked (Mal. 3:10, 11)
God invites people to verify His trustworthiness by their giving through seed faith.
- All of Our Giving Is to Be to God, Our Source (Matt. 25:34-40)
As we give to others through seed faith, we look to God offering it as a service of love to Him.
- Be Wise As to Where You Plant Your Seeds of Faith. God Multiplies Seed Sown in Good Soil (Mark 4:1-20)
- God Multiplies Your Seed to More Than Meet Your Greatest Need (Luke 5:1-11).
- Give What You Have in Your Hand to Give (2 Cor. 9:8-10)
God makes all bounty, self-satisfaction and contentedness abound toward us so we can share seed faith with others.
- You Can Always Give a Seed of Prayer…A Seed of Forgiveness…A Seed of Love and Joy (James 5:15,16).
- God Gave to Us First. He Is Our Role Model for Giving and Receiving (John 3:16)
God gave sacrificially of His best and gave expecting to receive. So should we give through seed faith.
Seven Mountains Mandate – The belief that, as Christians, it is mandated by God that Christians take dominion over the seven spheres of culture to secure “His Kingdom.” From a Dominionist website:
In Genesis 12, God promised to Abraham, “I will Bless you and make you a blessing and all people on earth will be blessed through you”. This promise of God will be released through this ‘7 Mountains Mandate.”
If we are to impact any nation for Jesus Christ, then we would have to affect the seven spheres, or mountains of society that are the pillars ofany society. These seven mountains are business, government, media, arts and entertainment, education, the family and religion. There are many subgroups under these main categories. These mountains are the cultural battlefields where the Kingdom of God needs to wage their wars in Christ and win the Darkness.
In Genesis 1:26 God created humans and commanded them to have Dominion on earth and Reign over all. The Seven cultural areas / mountains to exercise the
dominion of Christ Reign on earth are
1. Spirituality and Church
4. Government and Law
5. Media and Communication
6. Arts, Sports, Medicine, Technology, Entertainment etc,.
7. Business and Finance
These Mountains needs to be Reigned (sic) in Righteousness, Peace and Joy of the Kingdom of God. It’s God’s will that His Sons and Daughters exercise Dominion on all of these Mountains executing the Will of Father on earth and Advance His Kingdom on all areas of Life. It should be a burning desire for every Son to seek God’s Kingdom First and see that Jesus Kingdom is established on earth on all these Mountains as it is in Heaven. It’s Time to occupy the Mountains to bring Glory to the KING of Kings and LORD of lords! Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth on all these Mountains!
Signs and Wonders was a phrase used often by leaders of the Charismatic movement in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It is closely associated with the ministry of John Wimber and the Vineyard Movement. One of the major emphases of the belief is that the Gospel can be communicated more effectively to unbelievers if accompanied by supernatural manifestations brought on by the Holy Spirit (such as prophecy and healing).
The origin of the phrase is in Deuteronomy 26:8, which describes the commandment to tithe first fruits as linked to God’s having brought the Israelites out of Egypt “with a strong hand and an outstretched arm, and with signs and wonders“. This passage is read with emphasis in the Passover Haggadah and Seder.
A key verse in scripture that is understood by Christian ministries which allow God to move in signs and wonders is Mark 16:20, which states “Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it.”
Soteriology – the study of religious doctrines of salvation; In Christian doctrine it is the study of how God ends the separation people have from God due to sin by reconciling them with God’s self. Many Christians believe they receive the forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation, obtained by Jesus through his incarnation, life, innocent suffering, death, resurrection from the dead, and ascension. Christian soteriology examines how an individual is miraculously saved by divine grace through faith in Jesus Christ, and reconciled to God. Humankind was saved from both physical and spiritual destruction, the resulting condemnation of one’s sin.
Spiritual Mapping – Peter Wagner claims that this type of spiritual warfare was “virtually unknown to the majority of Christians before the 1990s”.According to Wagner, the basic methodology is to use spiritual mapping to locate areas,demon-possessed persons, occult practitioners such as witches and Freemasons, or occult idol objects like statues of Catholic saints, which are then named and fought, using methods ranging from intensive prayer to burning with fire. “[T]hey must burn the idols… the kinds of material things that might be bringing honor to the spirits of darkness: pictures, statues, Catholic saints, Books of Mormon… [T]he witches and warlocks had surrounded the area… When the flames shot up, a woman right behind Doris [Wagner’s wife] screamed and manifested a demon, which Doris immediately cast out!”
“Spiritual mapping, taught by many apostles and prophets of the New Apostolic Reformation and related ministries, involves marking the locations of so-called “demonic strongholds” on maps of a community or city. If it sounds a little like Palin’s now infamous map of targets, it is. More importantly, the spiritual warfare practiced by those who believe that their prayers can eradicate the houses of worship, organizations, and businesses of those whom they don’t approve, has no doubt desensitized them to the demonization of others.” (Rachel Tabachnick, Talk2Action, http://www.talk2action.org/story/2011/1/13/41430/3459)
Spiritual Warfare/Spiritual Warfare Movement – Movements which largely began in pentecostal churches embracing dominion theology which have since spread to other dominionist churches (such as the Southern Baptist Convention) that explicitly preach that the “saved” are in a state of warfare against all things “worldly” or not of the church. Explicitly connected with word-faith and deliverance ministry movements. In some cases, members of these movements refer to themselves as “Godly Warriors” or as “Joel’s Army”.
Stealth Evangelism / Bait-and-switch evangelism – A tactic of recruitment into dominionist groups–particularly pentecostal dominionist groups–in which persons are invited to some form of get-together (often a dinner, social club, or assembly) under false pretences. Once the persons are in attendance, and often after either money has been paid or doors have been closed (and the persons prevented from leaving), the persons holding the seminar begin a call to conversion to dominionism. Some variants specifically engage in gaining trust of persons individually and then beginning a religious hard-sell. Public schools have been targeted for these assemblies, often sold to the schools as “character assemblies” or antidrug talks and without revealing religious affiliation. Several attempts aimed at teens have been targets of lawsuits. Technique that is notably used by coercive religious groups in general.
Steeplejacking – Term for the process by which theocratic Christians take over mainstream churches from within, with the express intent of eliminating progressive voices.
Substitutional Atonement – Technically speaking, substitutionary atonement is the name given to a number of Christian models of the atonement that all regard Jesus as dying as a substitute for others, ‘instead of’ them. It is thought to be expressed in the Bible in passages such as ‘He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness,’ and ‘For Christ also died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God.’ (although other ways of reading passages like this are also offered).
There is also a less technical use of the term ‘substitution’ in discussion about atonement when it is used in ‘the sense that [Jesus, through his death,] did for us that which we can never do for ourselves’.
There are a number of differing theories that come under the umbrella term ‘substitutionary atonement’. The four best known are the Early Church Fathers’ ransom theory; Gustaf Aulen’s demystified version of the ransom theory, called Christus Victor; Anselm of Canterbury’s satisfaction theory; and the Reformed period’s penal substitution theory. Care should be taken when one reads the language of substitution in, for example, Patristic literature, not to assume any particular substitution model is being used but should, rather, check the context to see how the author was using the language.
Theocracy – The term commonly used to describe a form of government in which a religion or faith plays the dominant role. Properly speaking, it refers to a form of government in which the organs of the religious sphere replace or dominate the organs of the political sphere. From the perspective of the theocratic government, “God himself is recognized as the head” of the state.
The Toronto Blessing, a term coined by British newspapers, describes the revival and resulting phenomena that began in January 1994 at the Toronto Airport Vineyard church, now the Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship (TACF), a neocharismatic evangelical Christian church located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Participants in the conferences and meetings sponsored by TACF have reported healings, incidents of personal transformation and a greater awareness of God’s love. It has also been referred to as the Father’s blessing, the Anointing, the Awakening, the Renewal, the River and the Fire.
Tribulation – A literal seven-year period that is the culmination End Times according to the beliefs of most Fundamentalist and Pentecostal Christians, and well as many Evangelicals and Charismatics. The Tribulation is and marked by wars, plagues, and cataclysms, as well as the emergence of the Antichrist, and finally the bodily return of Jesus Christ to defeat the Antichrist and his armies at the Battle of Armageddon and inaugurate his divine reign over a 1,000-year-long kingdom on Earth.
Belief in the Tribulation, during which it is prophesied many key events occur in Israel, has even affected American foreign policy through the influence of the Christian Right.
For viewing the Tribulation as a chronological chart: http://www.millennium-ark.net/News_Files/Trib_Time/Trib_Time_Images/Trib_Timeline_entire.web.jpg
Vineyard Movement – a neocharismatic evangelical Christian denomination with over 1,500 affiliated churches worldwide.
The Vineyard Movement is rooted in the charismatic renewal and historic evangelicalism. Instead of the mainstream charismatic label, however, the movement has preferred the term Empowered Evangelicals (a term coined by Rich Nathan and Ken Wilson in their book of the same name) to reflect their roots in traditional evangelicalism as opposed to classical Pentecostalism. Members also sometimes describe themselves as the “radical middle” between evangelicals and Pentecostals, which is a reference to the book The Quest for the Radical Middle, a historical survey of the Vineyard by Bill Jackson.
It has been associated with the “Signs and Wonders” movement, the Toront blessing,the Kansas City Prophets and a particular style of Christian worship music.
The Vineyard operates a publishing house, Vineyard International Publishing.
One of the most important aspects of the Vineyard church model is the strong emphasis on connecting with God through worship. Generally in regular gatherings, whether they are main Sunday services or small “homegroups” based in private homes, equal time is given to both worship and Bible study, and a significant amount of time is also devoted to prayer and one-on-one ministry. This focus on worship and connection with the Holy Spirit is one of the primary reasons (along with the active nature of spiritual gifts discussed previously) that John Wimber gave for breaking with the Calvary Chapel movement. Worship in the Vineyard almost always is performed in a contemporary worship format, with a multi-piece band leading worship, but is not restricted to this style.
Walkaway – One who leaves the faith or the cult.
Word of Faith – (also known as Word-Faith or simply Faith) is a family of teachings in some Christian churches as well as a label applied by some observers to a teaching movement kindred to many Pentecostal and charismatic churches and individuals worldwide. The basic doctrine preached is that of salvation through Jesus Christ and what that salvation entails. It is based on Jesus’ teachings concerning the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Heaven and the state humans can receive through the atonement and sacrifice of Jesus Christ. These teachers state that this state of new being or creation (found in the biblical passages 2 Corinthians 5:17 and Galatians 6:15) can be received only through faith in the Word of God.
The Word of Faith movement has many distinctive features. It shares teachings with prosperity theology, but they are not the same thing. Additionally, many beliefs that the movement holds as essential are often criticised by some Christians as diverging from Christian orthodoxy. Christian author Robert M. Bowman, J. states that the word of faith movement is “neither soundly orthodox nor thoroughly heretical”. The movement emphasizes speaking, stating, or confessing verses found in the Bible, called the Word of God. The belief is that if one believes the Word of God and confesses it then the believer shall receive what they confess. This act of believing and speaking is said to be described by Jesus in Mark 11:22-23. The term word of faith itself is derived from the biblical passage Romans 10:8 which speaks of “the word of faith that we preach.”
Young Earth Creationism – the religious belief that the Universe, Earth and all life on Earth were created by direct acts of the Abrahamic God during a relatively short period, sometime between 5,700 and 10,000 years ago. Its primary adherents are those Christians and Jews who believe that God created the Earth in six 24-hour days, using a literal interpretation of the Genesis creation narrative as a basis.