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Old 04-18-2018, 05:03 PM   #91
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 247
Default Re: Deceptions on Campus

Originally Posted by ABrotherinFaith View Post
I remember being in a meeting when it was annouced that CRI had changed their position on the LC. Copies of the "We Were Wrong" issue were passed out and we were told triumphantly, "show your friends and family!"

It struck me as strange that suddenly Christless Christianity was to be believed! They were even needed to prove the legitimacy of the LC. The appeal to an authority that was, just moments ago, without the "blessing" was suspicious to say the least.
I know. I don't think there's necessarily PROOF that it was 100% a PR stunt from LC leadership...but where there's smoke- there's fire. And there's a lot of smoke!

Allegedly, the CRI article didn't address all the topics of their original claims. It's almost not relevant though bc the LC has many orthodox teachings. I would even say that MOST are orthodox. So you can argue all day about which doctrines in the LC make them a cult but that's just addressing half of the criteria when distinguishing whether or not a group is a cult. PRACTICES can also make you a cult. There IS such a thing as a Christian cult, this is something most Christian scholars believe and teach! Even if some of the doctrines are questionable, there is no doubt that they use many of the "trademark cult practices" in various degrees. There's a lot of info on this site or online about what those are. You don't get to be a Christian group and use cult practices, then get mad and sue people for calling you a cult when you're choosing to act like one. Who cares if the doctrine is "orthodox" if you're controlling and damaging your members and creating an environment that breeds spiritual abuse and exploits its members? You can "say" whatever you want and still have terrible practices!

Anyways, about CRI...nobody KNOWS the truth except those involved and God. There is enough "smoke" though to question CRI and not necessarily take their word at face value. It is also the RESPONSIBLE thing to do. It's no secret that H.H. was "clearing" the names of several aberrant groups, not just the LC. He had released similar "pardons" to other groups, one was a Christian biker group that wanted to be "gangsters for Jesus." Is it just a coincidence that CRI was profiting from selling the "We were wrong" article to the local churches (they weren't free!) and that all the sudden localities were not only praying, but sending money to support his "Bible answer man endevours?" You have to remember, the more popular that radio show gets, the more popular he becomes, the more books he can sell. If H.H. were IN the local church, they would have probably criticized him (at the very least) for being "ambitious" by selling his own Christian books but that's easy to overlook when Christianity (which ironically they claim is fallen, dead, and POOR POOR POOR) will vindicate them. Sure, CRI is profiting too but that's not the reason they're vindicating the LC, right? Who knows. It's something to think about even if you can't prove it. When you follow the money, many times things become clear. Maybe it was all genuine too, but like I said- there's enough "smoke" to look at it critically. Enough "smoke" that I don't think the local churches should be hanging their hat on that article! Of course, I'm sure so many (like I was) are unaware of the controversy bc the LC leadership isn't going to tell them about it and they don't dare to go online for fear of being poisoned. They're right but not in that way- they'll be poisoned in their ability to continue living in a cult! Ha! Ok, back to the "smoke" around CRI/Hank Hanegraff....

All this is online and easy to watch/read about if you take the time (google searches should be sufficient). There are podcasts from apologetics in the Christian community and videos on youtube from former employees of CRI describing how H.H. financially profited from "clearing" the air on whether or not certain groups were a cult. They also talk about CRI being less respected as a Christian apologetic resource compared to what it had been in the past. Many of them admired Dr. Walter Martin and being able to work at CRI was their "dream job" as an apologetic. They found themselves disappointed with the new leader, Hank Hanegraff, and describe his education (or lack there of) and the process he used to be able to answer questions quickly on "the Bible answer man" show. The calls were first screened and he had employees help him get the info fast on his screen so he could speak about it. I understand almost anyone would need that but they obviously didn't think he was qualified. He was however, a likable person with a good radio voice. Their opinions on CRI was that it was now "fluff apologetics" that doesn't tackle the really complicated doctrinal issues/debates. I have to say, if you listen to Dr. Walter Martin- he did not hold back. He was a very interesting person to say the least. It's obvious though that he had a strong faith and conviction for apologetic research. I DO have a very hard time believing he (Dr. Walter Martin-original founder of CRI) would have ever released a "We were wrong" article from CRI based on what I've seen and read from his speakings/writings. It's also important to know that the transition from Martin to Hanegraff is also controversial. Many assumed Walter's daughter would take over CRI after his death- and were surprised/some upset about H.H. coming in. From what I've read, Martin never publicly announced who he wanted to succeed him. Whatever happened/should have happened, most would agree that CRI was different after that, understandably- given the two mens's extremely different personalities and goals. For me, the biggest smoking gun with Hank was after hearing how he was meeting with the local churches in California, and the localities were praying for his "Bible answer man show"- there was a huge shift and all the sudden, he converted to the Eastern Orthodox Church- (one step away from Catholicism)! Yet, hasn't he sold books and practically based his career off being a Protestant?? That was when I REALLY felt something was off. I don't understand how that isn't extremely hypocritical on behalf of H.H. Later, I saw a video of Christian apologetics discussing this on their youtube channel/podcast and they were talking about how Hank got free radio time with the EOC and that's why he converted. He also made a lot of Protestant leaders mad, there's a lot of discussion on that as well. Who knows, but the shift from one polar opposite of the Lord's Recovery to the Eastern Orthodox church seems SO incredibly extreme that it does warrant questioning his character and his possible motivations throughout his career.

I've also heard H.H. been diagnosed with cancer and that's awful. I don't say all this to speculate or accuse. I would love to see it cleared up- either way though! All I've mentioned can be easily found online and I'd be happy to find those links to everything above if someone can't find them from a google search.

Anyways, this could probably be on another thread but I wanted to bring it up bc the article from CRI was used as "proof" the LC isn't a cult by a forum member. Nothing is that simple though, is it!? This info really helped me see the local church and LSM with their "blended brothers" (AKA "blinded brothers") for who they are. I hope it helps shed some light on the issues for those that are unfamiliar with the controversy. The local church still uses CRI's "We were wrong" article as vindication that they are a legit and sound Christian group but the article isn't something you should take at face value. This wasn't written by an objective third party apologetic research center and they didn't address the issues as you'd expect a Christian research journal would. Please do not take my word for it but look it up yourself! Doctrine is not the only issue that makes you a cult and if anything, I think that article possibly exposed more about what the local church leadership is doing in their attempts to attain a better image to the world. It's all a facade though. Until they change their practices and break ties/requirements between LSM and the localities, loosen the reins of control, humble themselves and admit past wrong-doings, as well as drop the elitist sectarian teachings/practices, they remain the same- a group of Christians with MAINLY orthodox teachings that use many cult tactics and practices. If you don't think that makes them a cult- you're entitled to believe that! But how many cult practices do you get to use and enforce on your members before you're officially a cult? Food for thought!
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