Thursday, February 28, 2008

Young Seminary Faculty

Dr. Couch, I'm beginning to see what you mean about "young seminary faculty." There is something wrong with many younger men now controlling Bible schools. What do you say?

ANSWER: I've addressed this many times, and yes, there is something going on. And I'm not referring to younger faculty men simply turning liberal. They have a different mind-set being part of a generation that has the same. They think they know it all and that they have more wisdom than older men. While this problem has always existed I believe it is accelerated in our day.

One Dean from an Evangelical school just told me, "Mal, we cannot find younger faculty members. There is something wrong!" Two other prominent Bible Universities are shifting to the left with their "younger" presidents and faculty members. One of these schools has about five faculty that are moving into heresy. All who are watching this believe the school could soon be split. Another school I know of has sickening in-fighting going on among the board members. One of my "older" friends who taught for years at one of them said recently, "I'm out of here!" At the other school, older experienced teachers are simply resigning.

What I am describing I hear constantly from those of you who visit this website. My advice: If the school leadership is "young," do not go there! One of the "big" schools in Virginia just had a change of the academic guard and leadership. The changes they swept in are breathtaking and will probably destroy the school in the next decade. Remember, when I say destroy, I don't mean the school will go away, I mean it just will not be the same, and will probably turn liberal. And, the teaching of the Bible will probably end up in the basement with but a handful of students attending.

Be careful of the school you choose. Feel free to ask me about what is happening as you try to decide.

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Why Opposing Speakers at Bible Conferences?

Dr. Couch, why is Southern Evangelical Seminary featuring Hank Hanegraaff and touting him as they do? They are inviting him to speak (probably on Mormonism) at their next Apologetic Conference. Dr. Norman Geisler is a Dispensationalist and Hank so opposes it. I don’t understand. What do you say?

Answer: The argument of the school is probably that Hanegraaff is coming to speak on an area that would not conflict with what the school teaches. But I have a problem with that. I have always held fairly consistently that I want only those who are correct on their overall view of the Bible to speak for me. There are a few times that this did happen but not often.

Hanegraaff is a flaming allegorist and a preterist, though he seems to deny this. He is not a biblicist! And because he is so opposed to dispensationalism, the clear doctrine of the rapture, and other eschatological issues, I could not have him come and address even Mormonism. I have learned through the years that if one is off on certain important parts of Scripture, he will have a failure or deficiency in another part of the Word of God!

(1) Discernment, (2) Consistency, and (3) strong biblical Exegesis must be maintained by seminaries and churches. There can be no doctrinal bending of the truth. The apostle Paul told the Ephesian elders (in the Greek text) that he “did not himself keep away from distinctly teaching” to them the entire will (purpose, boulan) of God (Acts 20:27). Note that the word “will” is in the singular. He did not fail to give them the whole, the entirety, of all of the Word of God! He then reminded the elders that their job was “to be on guard” not only for themselves but for the whole flock of God entrusted to them (v. 28).

Thus, there was to be no slippage, on compromise, no this or that in teaching the complete Bible.

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

Monday, February 25, 2008

The Love of Prophecy

Dr. Couch, I appreciate what you're saying about the loss of the study of Bible prophecy. I understand Rick Warren in some of his writings repudiates the study of, or love of prophecy, saying this is not for us now. How do you answer?

ANSWER: The whole Bible is ours to know and study. The OT is full of hundreds of prophecies about both the first and second comings of Christ. We should know the doctrinal facts as given to us by the Lord in inspiration!

Warren made a mistake and misquoted by paraphrase the words of Christ to his disciples in Acts 1:7-8. They had asked if at that time He was going to establish the millennial, Davidic earthly kingdom (v. 6). Jesus did not say “Shelve your teaching of prophetic truth, and especially about the coming kingdom,” but He said “It is not for you to know the times or the seasons …” (v. 8). In fact, Paul reminded the Thessalonian believers that he had previously taught them about the rapture and then about the coming antichrist. He wrote: “Did you not remember that while I was still with you [before], I was telling you these things?” (2 Thess. 2:5). Great chunks of the NT are about Bible prophecy, and even whole letters deal with the subject, like 2 Thessalonians, 2 Peter, Jude, and Revelation. In almost all the other NT books chapters are given over to the study of the coming tribulation, the rapture, and the return of Christ: Matthew 24-25; Luke 21; Acts 3; 1 Thessalonians 4-5; Romans 9-11, etc.

Back in 1947 Lewis Sperry Chafer knew where the hatred and repudiation of prophecy was going. And yet he was blessed to see that in the decades before his Theology was published there was a great ground swell of interest in Bible prophecy, especially because of what was happening in the Middle East, and specifically in regard to the return of the Jews to the Holy Land and the soon founding of the nation of Israel (June, 1948). He wrote in his Systemtic Theology (I, xxxiii):

It is important to note, also, that though predictive prophecy was made clear to the early Church, that great body of truth along with other vital doctrines was lost to view during the Dark Ages and, though not emphasized by the Reformers, is becoming increasingly clear during these past two generations in particular as reverent and scholarly men study the prophetic Scriptures.

The theme of predictive prophecy is vast indeed. It is reasonable to suppose that there is as much to record concerning the future as there is to record concerning the past, and that the theologian who ignores the prophecies which are yet unfulfilled is, therefore, eliminating a large portion of the material which enters into the whole revealed program of God.

Now with the evil philosophy of what is called The Emerging Church, and the death of strong exegetical Bible study and teaching, we are moving back into the dark ages of the lack of scriptural study. One of the specific results will be the jettisoning of the nation of Israel among Evangelical Christians. A Jewish author writing about the Middle East and Israel in the Jerusalem Post said, “The American Christians just don’t get it!”

Be careful of the voices you are listening to. Be careful who you vote for. It is becoming increasingly clear that most of the new political candidates do not have a clue about what is going on in the Middle East!

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Collapse of This Nation

 Dr. Couch, I am an older Christian and I see, along with others over fifty, the collapse of this nation. Why does the younger citizen not see it?

ANSWER: Because they came up through the government school system that was saturated with secular psychology. This is the "Me" generation that is looking for self-fulfillment and self-actualization! They feel they have an entitlement to whatever they need and want. They do not have a clue about world history, the issues in the Middle East, and what the gospel and biblical prophecy is all about. They are interested in their own agendas and have no orientation of what is taking place around the world!

Notice what is happening in our presidential race. The younger crowd simply wants "change""but they cannot say from what to what! They repudiate white hair candidates, military experience, and age experience and wisdom. And on the Democratic side they do not understand the issues of the Middle East, Israel, and the dangers in the Arab world. Israel may be turned against and ignored if the wrong man gets in office.

While no one would argue that the "good old days" were perfect, there was still a stronger moral imperative in America back fifty years or more. This does not mean that everyone was a believer in Christ but it does mean that Judeo-Christian morality ruled and was to a degree more respected.

I believe a judgment has already begun on this nation. The fall of the Trade Towers was a sign. And the economic downturn is but another indicator that God is removing His blessings.

Quoting a leading historian, Flint Whitlock and Ron Smith in their book The Depths of Courage write:

The U.S. in 1938 created 30% of the world's manufactured output, compared to at that time Germany's 13% and Japan's 4%. Beyond that, Americans were a proud people who subscribed to a common culture based on work, family, respect for institutions, and faith ... It was these intangibles that the Axis powers neglected to take into account when declaring war on the United States. (Bold mine)

In a recent edition of the Jerusalem Post, a writer talking about the Middle East and what is happening in Israel said: "American Christians just don't get it." American dispensational/premillennial Christians get it if they are awake. But many of them are shifting, going to sleep, and moving away from the prophetic Word of God.

In my opinion it is all over. Do not expect to see revival or a turn around spiritually ever again. The apostasy prophesied is upon us! You do not have to agree with me. You have the right to be wrong!

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

What is the Balance Between God's Sovereignty and Human Responsibility?

Dr. Couch, what is the balance between God's sovereignty and human responsibility, especially in the story of Cain and Abel?

ANSWER: When you look at any of the stories of the human drama in Scripture you are looking at the realm of human responsibility. But God's sovereignty is not over-ridden in what is happening in the ongoing march of human history. He is going to have His way! He is in charge of His own Plan!

So, it is not necessary to answer specifically about Cain and Abel because Scripture tells us that God is at work in all events of the Bible. I always say that God is 100% sovereign and humanity is 100% responsible. It is not a 20% vs. 80% deal! Now I cannot understand that at all but the Bible makes this clear. You cannot read any section of verses in Scripture without seeing His sovereignty at work!

Here is just one passage:

Who is like Me? Let him proclaim and declare it; yes, let him recount it to Me in order, from the time that I established the ancient nation. And let them declare to them the things that are coming and the events that are going to take place. ... Have I not long since announced it to you and declared it?" (Isa. 44:6-8)

It is God who establishes the nations, that is, each individual man on the planet. He sets the boundaries and causes history to unfold. But again, we are responsible! I cannot reconcile that!

You need a good course in systematic theology. I suggest you get Lewis Sperry Chafer's Systematic Theology and read volumes I & III. The verses he gives will blow you away! This is how at the ripe age of nineteen I began to believe in the absolute sovereignty of God. (I believe you can get this Systematic Theology set still from Kregel for a discount!) I also suggest Arthur Pink's book, Sovereignty of God, though he definitely is wrong on his view of Limited Atonement, and cannot defend it scripturally! But what he writes otherwise is right on target.

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

Saturday, February 16, 2008

The Period of the Apostasy

Dr. Couch, the more you write about what is happening in our world, I am convinced you are right. We probably are moving into the period called the apostasy in the Scriptures. Do you have any source reading I could get hold of?

ANSWER: Within the "religious" community there is the movement called The Emerging Church. It is also labeled A New Reformation. It is a conjunction of teachings and ideas that are all thrown into a melting pot, creating a poisonous stew that leads straight to the seven-year worldwide tribulation. This is taking place in Evangelical church after church, and, it is now destroying Evangelical seminaries and colleges. (I just heard last week of one of the most respected Christian institutions about to be split over what's going on!)

What is taking place also includes elements of Replacement Theology (the church replaces Israel), a flat-out denial of Christ's coming to reign in Jerusalem. It may include elements of Progressive Dispensationalism, mysticism, Eucharistic cultism, Mariology, and an outright denial of Bible prophecy, etc. We are talking about Evangelical schools warping to the left at a rapid pace - we're not discussing liberal institutions that are already over the hill!

I have been teaching and warning on this for years and now I feel vindicated!

I highly recommend you order the book Faith Undone by Roger Oakland (Lighthouse Trails Publishing, Silverton, OR). You can get it on Amazon.

There is no turning back. And while God can do anything He pleases, I believe this is the countdown to the end of days. By the way, I am also doing a CD as a companion study, on the subject: The Times of the Gentiles. Don't miss these strong doctrinal studies.

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

Friday, February 15, 2008

What in the World is Happening in the Middle East?

Dr. Couch, what in the world is happening in the Middle East?

ANSWER:Only those of us who are premillennial/dispensationalists have anything to say about Israel and the Middle East. The Covenant-amillennial-allegorical guys are silent! They don't have a clue! They do not believe Scripture and the literalness of coming Bible prophecy.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has put the death sentence on Bush's (Ha, ha, what a joke!) "Road Map To Peace." Only when the Prince of Peace comes and brings worldwide peace, and rules with a scepter of iron, will this globe have peace! But again, only dispensationalists truly understand this.

Bush has abandoned the rule of thumb that the Palestinians must stop their terror before true negotiations can take place. Rice recently said, "The administration has abandoned the most fundamental condition of its support of Palestinian statehood—namely, an end to Palestinian terror." At one time Bush said, "A Palestinian state will NEVER be created by terror" but now says this is not a prerequisite for statehood! If Bush has his way the Eternal City of Jerusalem will be divided between the Arabs and Israel. This will not be Peace! The world will tumble further into the abyss! Christ said if the tribulation is not stopped "No flesh would survive!"

Remember, when the tribulation begins and the church has been caught away into glory, the antichrist will make his move and bring about a false peace. He will broker a contract between Israel and the Arabs. I believe the Jews will be given permission to rebuild their temple on the northern side of the temple mount platform. The Dome of the Rock and the temple will coexist side by side. But half way through the seven year period, he will enter the temple and proclaim himself God. He will proclaim himself even above all gods on the earth. (See 2 Thessalonians 2)

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Why Is There a Big Move Away From Dispensationalism?

Dr. Couch, why is there a big move away from the Scofield Bible and dispensationalism? What do you think happened?

ANSWER: As many of you know I became very close to Dr. John F. Walvoord before he died. I spent months with him in conversations and ended up writing his classic and personal autobiography. He gave me a lot of insight into what happened.

Also, you and everyone reading this needs to get my Dictionary of Premillennial Theology (Kregel), which won a prestigious Silver Medallion Award from the Christian Booksellers Association. In it I give the lives and stories about C.I. Scofield and all of the other great premillennial, dispensational Bible teachers, that over one hundred years ago brought an awareness of prophecy and Israel to Evangelical Christians.

Now you asked “What happened?” I would say several things:

  1. A lack of strong Bible teaching that began around 1970.
  2. The coming of an American generation that loves prosperity and does not want to hear about a coming apostasy and a worldwide tribulation.
  3. A renewed anti-Semitism that makes people not want to hear about a coming earthly kingdom where Christ rules over the Jewish people, and the world, from the Holy Land.

Of the above points I would say a lack of Bible teaching in churches showing the dispensational distinctions of Scripture, is one of the most prominent reasons. We are now into "feel-good" messages from the pulpit, light-hearted little psycho ditties, materialism sermons, etc. Sermonettes for christianettes! Pastors now emote, devote, and promote rather than explain in depth the Word of God! Verse-by-verse Bible exposition from the pulpit is out! Many pastors are now gutless to teach Bible prophecy, being afraid of the sheep, and thinking that prophecy is divisive. My answer is: “So what?” My job is to teach the full council of God, never mind people’s responses.

So Scofield and the blessing he brought to Bible study is out the window. Ignorance is now growing like weeds! And, I believe there is no turning things back. We are moving into the apostasy!

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

Saturday, February 9, 2008

What About Illegal Foreigners?

Dr. Couch, I appreciate your stance on what you call "Illegal Foreigners" coming into our country by breaking the laws. Why don't others see what you are saying?

ANSWER: It is because most Americans today no longer are appreciative of this nation, how it got here, the Christian base of the nation, etc. We now are a consumer nation, spending, consuming, and just out for "fun"! We have taken this land and its blessings for granted. We do not understand the cultural, social Christian orientation in its beginning history, even though it is true that such spiritual roots are now almost completely gone from the present moment of our existence.

It is not politically correct to argue that the nation was founded on European, Calvinistic, Reformation roots. The secularists and humanists are ignorant of history. They are revisionists who are out to destroy the memory of our European, Christian original values. They have done a great job of it. The illegal foreigner issue comes out of the historic destruction of how our nation was founded. There is an agenda in our secular universities to degrade our nation's heritage and its spiritual beginnings.

By the way, remember what happens in England and Europe will in time arrive in America. The Europeans have decades ago repudiated their Christian heritage. It is a statistical fact that eighty percent of the people of Denmark are now atheists! You may have read recently that the Archbishop of Canterbury has called for England to accept Islamic laws for the Muslims in that country. In other words, Britain would become a nation with two different legal systems! This is madness but it is part of the spiritual blindness and apostasy that we dispensationalists knew quite well from the Bible was coming!

There are some interesting immigration statistics you need to know. For example from 1820 to 1978 the vast majority of immigrants were from Calvinistic or Protestant countries, minus Italy. Ten percent of the immigrants during that period were Catholics from Italy with eighty-three percent from basically Protestant influenced nations. Because the numbers were so low Latin American countries are not mentioned in the figures.

Another fact must be mentioned. The people arriving in America were free to worship as they pleased but they knew they were coming to a Protestant-oriented country. They accepted this and as they settled in this country were blessed by that fact.

Interestingly, the majority of those coming from Russia were Jews. They were being persecuted by the Czar and immigrated to America. The number rose to 81,000 by 1892 and peaked at 258,000 in 1907. In my opinion this furthered the blessing upon America. This nation became a haven for many of God's earthly people!

Historians note that after World War I the country turned against massive immigration. Revisionists look at this as some sort of prejudice but I have a problem with that. We were not there and living at that time! The people of that generation knew something that we don't now know or have forgotten. Immigration remained basically European until the presidency of John F. Kennedy. He opened the flood gates which began to mix and match cultures and societies, which I believe began a further destruction of the Christian and Protestant base of this nation.

Something else must not be forgotten. America cannot absorb the entire world within its borders. We cannot be the dumping ground for all the poor of the world. We have traditionally reached out with charity to poor nations, and exported technology and industrial help when able.
I am in no way arguing that all of the folks coming in from Europe were believers in Christ but their laws, mores, cultural affinities, were basically Reformation and Protestant. My Ph.D. dissertation was titled: "Public School Textbooks: Pre-Civil War." In that work I proved that early America was Christian and this was cited even by our Supreme Court. "America is a Christian Nation," said the judges.

The more we open the floodgates to cultures and societies that are not European and Protestant based, the more our nation will become something else. I believe we will not be able to stop this trend because people coming out of our government schools and universities just "don't get it!" They have been brainwashed by communist and socialist professors to believe the lies about how terrible this nation is, with the result they are turning this nation's younger generation in another direction. But the open repudiation of America's Christian values will play a role in bringing on the judgment and the apostasy I have been teaching from the Bible for decades!

It is dangerous for me personally to write the truth as I have stated it above. I will be labeled a bigot and prejudicial. But I have many personal and life-long friends who are minorities. My concerns are not aimed at the individual but my concerns are about a mass immigration of certain cultures and societies that will destroy what we have. And anyone who knows me understands that I believe all people stand before God equal (as sinners and as redeemable), but this does not mean that for the survival of this nation we can open the flood gates to all cultures without regard for the consequences. All cultures are not equal morally nor do they look at family and legal issues with the same biblical orientation! Time will certainly prove what I am writing is correct, if it has not already begun to show the truth of this argument.

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Is Jesus Just Another 'god'?

Dr. Couch, John 1:1 is one of the strongest verses about the deity of Christ and yet the Jehovah Witnesses use it to say that Christ was just another "god." How do we answer?

ANSWER: doctrine without knowing the biblical languages. A lady phoned in who did not know what she was saying, and castigated me terribly. Her ignorance and woman's emotionalism came through loud and clear! She was screaming into the telephone!

But it is true— - doctrine is really only proven and made clear in the grammar of the Old Testament Hebrew, and the New Testament Greek. We are moving into a spiritual dark age because young "theologes" are not taking the time to study out thoroughly, with discipline, the biblical languages.

But back to your question, the clause in question (John 1:1c) reads this way in the English: "and the Word was God." (The Word (logos) of course in this context is Christ.)

In the Greek text it reads this way: "And God was the Word." The English translations are correct because of what is happening in the Greek. The Greek reader in biblical days understood what John was saying but we need just a little clarification and explanation.

In the Greek there is no article with God. The JWs say that without the article you should translate this as "a God" as if Jesus is a God but one of many Gods! However, they are wrong! Quite often there is no article before God in the New Testament and yet the many passages without it are still discussing the true God of Scripture as if He is the only One, and there is no other!

But there is more here grammatically!

The "is" is the "to be" verb and that verb has the subject case (the nominative) on both sides in the verse. But another rule comes into place. The noun that has an article is the SUBJECT, with the one without an article being what is called the PREDICATE. "The Word" then is the subject and "God" is the predicate. In my AMG Commentary series, in his work on the book of John, Elmer Towns correctly writes:

John very carefully concludes the first verse of this gospel with a statement declaring the deity of the Word—"the Word was God." In this expression the World Translation (Jehovah Witnesses) has erroneously translated this phrase "the Word was a god," violating both the context of the phrase and the rules of Greek grammar but making it fit as well with the Jehovah's Witness denial of Christ's deity. Theos without the article emphasizes quality rather than individuality. Had John included the article, this phrase would tend to support the error of Sabellianism, which taught one God manifested in three different modes.

I am looking for students who have had one year of Greek to study the deity passages with me. They can get a scholarship for seminary credit. Those interested should email me.

Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch