Saturday, March 9, 2019

WHY YOU SHOULD BE READING PULPIT & PEN EVERY SINGLE DAY


Reverend Jordan Hall, known online (and possibly with friends) as JD Hall, is the head of a website called Pulpit & Pen. Additionally, he is the Pastor of Fellowship Baptist Church in Sydney, Montana which associates with, as they state, “other like-minded churches in North Dakota, Montana, Saskatchewan, and across the country.” Hall is Baptist Reformed in his theology which is a general category with varieties among this sect.


If I could ascribe to Hall a single characteristic, I would attribute to him a Lutheresque spirit, as in Martin Luther, the theologian of course. Some readers might be annoyed with this elevated attribution which is an intended compliment, on the whole but a recognition, also, of a temperament which has its weaknesses, as well, which are more possibly more obvious than shortcomings in passive personalities whose imperfections are surreptitious in their existence hence, lending themselves to less immediate scrutiny but often, can be far more damaging.


Why?


Why do I say that you should be reading and watching Pulpit & Pen every day? Well, it certainly isn’t because I have suddenly become a Calvinist, because obviously I am not one (nor am I an Arminian, to those of you who have not succeeded in growing past binary theological labeling). And it definitely isn’t because JD Hall is a thing of beauty to behold. In fact, one might call his dog-face a manly dog-face, still yet, this feature might be a blessing in disguise since you won’t forget his face and it grows on you. Nor do I insist on a diet of Pulpit & Pen because Hall is always delicate and comfy since, in the midst of Hall taking out the trash, now and then every man or woman with the courage to do so knows, it’s tough, dirty and something the weak-minded avoid altogether. So if you faint easily, you’ve been warned.


I tell my readers this because JD Hall, and his contributors such as Seth Dunn, are almost single-handedly leading the way in a rescue attempt of conservative Evangelicalism and especially the Southern Baptist Convention but certainly beyond, to all concerned CE’s and even Fundamentalists (CE/F, if you will), from the ravages of social justice gospelism being touted by groups such as The Gospel Coalition which is, in truth, Marxist ideology that has infiltrated CE/F theology and mutated into an alluring framework into which many leaders such as Tim Keller (TGC) Al Mohler (SBC), Russell Moore (SBC) and of course, John Piper (Reformed Baptist) have deposited their theology and that is now being conformed to the structure imposed by their newly adopted hull.
 

Daily, the work at Pulpit & Pen is filling the void of places where 100 men once stood and that is not an exaggeration. Day in and day out, they tirelessly vet offerings and influence of ministries around the world that they may guard the little sheep from the least to the most damning of errors. This is hard, unappreciative and alienating (it shouldn’t be, but it is) toil.


His most recent willingness to confront close ministerial friends and models


Most people in this world are fragile, maybe that is why we are called sheep. It takes a unique person with the rare temperament to slay the dragons because inevitably, one must come upon the babies of dragons, which must be killed, too. Unfortunately, however, the infirmed populace who loves to see the dragon have his head cut off, also wants the knights own head the moment he touches the baby dragons because baby dragons are so precious though, they will only grow to kill and destroy later. UGH.


So who wants to sign up for this task? JD Hall did and does so, with his crew, not only on your behalf but on behalf of our Lord, Christ Jesus. This bring me to one of more recent campaigns.


John MacArthur is one of Hall’s ministerial and theological examplars. He has set a pattern which JD has sought to incorporate into his own theology and practice. Phil Johnson, MacArthur’s editor, apparently became a ministerial companion, if not personal friend, of Hall’s. More recently and with regard to both the Dallas Statement on Social Justice and the hosting of social justice theology enablers at a conference by MacArthur, there has been a turn in the compatibility of Hall and the GTY crew.


I bring this up for a reason. Most men simply will not touch men and ministries which were primary sources of their admiration and imitation during their theological/ecclesiastical formative years. They simply cannot bear to be grieved by such confrontations which there is a warranted rebuttal to be given, especially publicly. JD Hall, however, isn’t that man. He is driven by his convictions, no prisoners allowed so far. Thus, Hall has been open and frank in his disagreement and disappointment with regard to the apparent absence of discernment and consistency by John MacArthur and Johnson on these matters and has not held back, going over his objections, point by point.


It’s not getting better, my friends


The state of CE/F isn’t getting better, it’s degrading, rapidly. Yes, there are still faithful segments but the overall condition of conservative Evangelicalism and Fundamentalism, is in frankly, scary. The major influencers among the Southern Baptists which have control of the helm, are now left of center, having embraced Marxist critical-race ideology and have incorporated Race-based Special Interest theology into their body of doctrine resulting in the horrendous practices of non-stop virtue signaling and a damning of the church with a myriad of nonsensical, toxic and malignant theology and practice.


As I close I want to simply go through the blog headlines from Pulpit & Pen and list a number of issues they are tackling where giants once braved to fight but now, only the mice mostly gather, biting and gnawing on the few, such as P&P, who now fill the ranks which are depleted by way of cowardice or other self-aggrandizing mental flatulence excuse making:
























Where are they?


“Where oh where has my Underdog gone, where or where can he be?” You might be surprised that I am advocating for Pulpit  & Pen seeing that I took to task in a most excoriating way some years ago, the Pyromaniacs blog which did tackle many of the same issues but don’t be fooled. Pyro was far inferior and quickly devolved into a spa for the narcissistic bathing of a handful of people. P&P, while driven by a strong personality which may, from time to time get in its own way, has both matured and steered clear of investing in egotistical comment wars and rather, has endowed itself with constant attention to the issues, themselves.


But aside from mentioning the long dormant Pyro’s blog which has come to life again more recently, the question is, where are they? Where are the men in ministry willing to protect the vulnerable and mostly, stupid sheep, from the hordes of liars, fable-tellers, theological thugs and thieves? There was a day when such garbage wouldn’t dare be delivered as any kind of substance on the door of any decent Evangelical but lo’ and behold, now it’s at the top of the daily lunch menu glad-handedly peddled and pushed by the Men in Black and White
.

Finally


JD Hall, I am convinced, is mostly objected to, if not despised, not because of his mistakes along the way or his inevitable shortcomings of any man and ministry but because of his precision in revealing the hypocrisy and corruption in the church today. His anecdotal missteps and foibles are simply an excuse to attempt to erase the man and his message by those who have a great deal to hide.


I am not a Calvinist. JD Hall probably wouldn’t even say complimentary things about many of my theological leanings in that regard and likely, I would be on his Arminian list (again, I am not one). I really do not care, he’s still telling the truth on so many things which matter that you should be reading and watching Pulpit & Pen every day.

5 comments:

Cindy said...

Alex, I stumbled across some discussion you were having on a blog called intermonk.com, published back in 2011. In the discussion you were discussing the teachings of R.B. Thieme, Jr. I have recently begun listening to Pastor Thieme's discs and agree with some that he can be extremely hard core. Although I do believe listening to the tapes will give me a better understanding of bible teachings, I like to think I can shift through some of the more shocking opinions of Pastor Thieme so I can stick to the facts of God's word.

My big question is this: I'm looking around for a church. I'm Catholic by baptism, but haven't practiced in decades. I feel a calling to be around other like-minded Christians as myself, but I don't even know where to begin. The last time I wandered into a church it was the Church of Nazarene and I couldn't run away fast enough.

Do you have any recommendations?

Thank you,
Cindy

Alex A. Guggenheim said...

Cindy

As we know, all Pastors/theologians will be imperfect but some, far less. I believe R.B. Thieme's material, by high majority, is superior to most. I would keep with his material while looking for a church.

My recommendation is to take your time with any visit. Our family spent two and a half years visiting churches before we decided to join one.

The emphasis of a healthy church will be an effort to teach doctrine from the basics to more meaty doctrine.

It can take time to find out the real emphasis of a church, sometimes those things are hidden. Also insist on a visit from either the pastor or some representative of the Pastoral staff if it has a multiple pastors staff.

Have a long meeting with that person, ask them many questions, interview him and find out what the real objective is.

What you will see with R B thieme jr., is a man who could have gone a different route and published books through publishers and become quite well known far beyond the circle of influence he had but in his humility he focused his energies on his responsibilities toward his sheep and from that conviction he devoted himself to studying and teaching so that you may take the doctrine you learn with you and apply it outside of church, in life.

His style and his choice to teach as often as he did may not be something you find in another ministry but it's essential that you do find something similar in the way of emphasis of studying and teaching by the pastor.

Sit and listen, does he teach or does he simply moralize and tell stories in the pulpit?

Also find out if becoming a member requires too many things that invade your privacy as a Believer priest. There are churches that do that and then when you decide not to be a member there can be a very difficult extraction so you have to learn about those things as well.

It will take your time God will enlighten your mind as you seek a church home, he promises that.

It is such a great pleasure to meet you Cindy, and learn of your commitment to learning sound Doctrine and growing in your faith.

Cindy said...

Thank you. This is very helpful.

C.

terriergal said...

Oh yes sometimes he goes after people for the right reasons. And sometimes like Brannon Howse he goes after them for all the wrong reasons. And he goes way too far in targeting people who are largely in agreement and refusing correction from friends. If you once thought team pyro guys were bullies even while saying a lot of true stuff (I see that post had been removed??) then I’m mystified as to what changed to make you commend someone like Hall.

I can’t think of any I care to listen to or follow anymore except our own pastor, who is decidedly not a bully, and fits the qualifications for elder-overseer, unlike a lot of these guys.

Alex A. Guggenheim said...

I lost a cache of articles last year. I am missing about 40-50! That was one of them.