My Time In Purgatory — Part I

The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him.  Proverbs 18:17

For 25 years I have turned the other cheek while I’ve been slandered and libeled by the Clown Reformed Church (hereinafter referred to as “CRC”) but in this document, I am telling, in the words of Paul Harvey, the rest of the story.

We showed up in 1995 after United Airlines (UA) decided to close operations in Columbia South Carolina. From 1989-1995 I Pastored the first Church I served while at the same time working part-time for the Airlines. With UA’s decision, there was no way that I could support my family on the small rural Church’s salary alone and so my wife and I decided we would take UA up on its offer to pay for our move to one of six cities of our choosing. Our #1 bid was Grand Rapids Michigan, primarily because my kin lived in and surrounding that area and also because there was a Seminary there where I could do my next level of degree work if we decided that was possible.

In our visits to Grand Rapids to set up shop one of the first things we did was to check out with the local Seminary if there were any area churches that needed pulpit supply. I had been preaching on Sundays for nearly 7 years and it seemed like a good idea to at least investigate the possibility of pulpit supply while living in Michigan. We contacted the appropriate person in the bowels of the bureaucracy of the CRC and he told us that there was indeed a Church that routinely needed pulpit supply and that it would be good for them to have someone who would be a constant for them in this regard. He went on to say, however, that we would have to talk to another person as well about this opportunity and immediately ushered down to another office to talk to yet another bureaucrat but not without first giving us a contact name for the small Church that needed the pulpit supply.

We waited in the waiting room of the office and soon an older rounded man asked us into his office. The first chap we spoke to popped in again and explained what was going on. Having explained the situation the first chap promptly left. The second chap just stared at the door that the first chap departed out of. He then stared at us for a moment and returned again to his staring at the door. This happened for some little while the 2nd chap caught his bearings. Finally, in the first words he spoke to us, he said, “You can’t do this.” I simply responded by saying “OK.” For 5 minutes he kept repeating over and over in different ways, “You can’t do this,” and for 5 minutes I kept saying “OK.” I already had the local contact name and so I knew that once I finally was finished with the 2nd chap saying, “You can’t do this,” I would make a beeline for the phone to call the contact number. I never saw the older rounded man again.

I contacted the number given to me by the first chap and the man on the other end of the line seemed genuinely excited to know that I was interested in not only filling their pulpit but also quite possibly living in their parsonage. They were a small congregation that could not, like the congregation I had been serving in South Carolina, afford a full-time man, though they could afford a “tentmaker.” That is what I was offering them. Long story short here, we met several times with the contact man and within a month I was filling the pulpit and within a month of that, the small Church received approval from the District denominational authorities that I would be allowed to be pulpit supply for this small struggling Church. The district authorities were gleeful for me likewise because I solved a problem that they had in trying to figure out what to do with this congregation For years the District was allotting a small percentage of their budget to keep the Church afloat but with my presence, the District no longer had to cut checks for this Church because the Church could make it by paying me a small salary ($ 300.00 a week) while I continued tent-making working for UA in Grand Rapids. Indeed, there had even been discussion among the District Denomination to close this Church before I arrived. I was a solution for many parties. I was a solution for the congregation itself. I was a solution for the Seminary guy always having to find pulpit supply for this Church every week. I was a solution to the District’s problem of spending money on a mission Church that they were convinced would never be self-supporting.

This worked for three years before my health began to burnout. I was working nearly full-time for UA while working full-time for the Church. At the end of 1998 UA made it nearly impossible, by their purposeful scheduling of me to work on Sundays, (Station Politics) for me to keep tent-making at UA in Grand Rapids while pastoring. At that point, Jane and I made a proposal to the local Church that if they could meet a very modest salary we would step out in faith and quit UA and pastor full time in Charlotte. The Church, to their credit, resolved to meet that modest salary and I quit UA and the tent-making I had done for nearly a decade.

One result was that I got to know my children who I had seen comparatively little of for those ten years. Eventually, another result was that I had to, once again, deal with denominational politics. For the most part, the Denomination left me and the Church alone. However, they had assigned me a “mentor,” by the name of Dr. Dusty Lugnut. Dr. Lugnut was the Pastor of the flagship Church in the District 40 miles up the road and had the endearing virtue of always thinking very well of himself as combined with letting you know that he thought very well of himself. The problem with Dr. Lugnut and me is that Dr. Lugnut was a full-on Barthian (Neo-Orthodox) while I had sworn my life to extinguishing Barthians. Putting the two of us together in a mentor-mentee relationship was like tying two polecats together at the tail and slinging them over a clothesline. I think we met twice before we both realized that we were not going to be best pals.

At that point, the condescending Dr. Lugnut just decided to ignore me and ignore the Church. Now, keep in mind he had been assigned by the District to shepherd me into an official capacity in the Denomination while at the same time working to make sure that the Church I was serving moved from a “mission church” to an “organized” church. However, Dr. Lugnut determined he was going to show me and us that he was in charge and so he just ignored us for nearly 14 years. Just try to imagine how disappointed I was.

Every so often during those 14 years (maybe three times), we would be contacted by either Dr. Lugnut or by some other District chieftain. I remember one time there was a Minister from Toledo who phoned me and told me about his big plans for the District now that he had been elected moderator and that he wanted me to be part of that and so he was going to bring me in. I just grunted agreement suspecting that like so many times before this was just so much talk. I was right. In six months he transferred to another Church and that was the end of his maniacal plan to shape the District in his image.

I would occasionally attend District denominational meetings of the Clown Reformed Church (CRC), and would inevitably return home in a rage with my blood pressure in the stratosphere. These meetings were held twice annually. At one of the meetings, I remember the Anabaptist and so Pacificst John Howard Yoder being invoked as a guru on war theory with the whole floor adding their Amens. I finally couldn’t bear it any longer and stood up and said, “It is amazing to me that a room full of putatively Reformed people are kissing the arse of an Anabaptist and Pacifist. I get not agreeing with this war, but invoking an Anabaptist intellectual? What is wrong with you people. I thought you were Reformed.” A deep and spooky silence blanketed the floor.

Another time at the District Denominational meeting a discussion was had on the floor about the necessity to extend to homosexual ministers insurance benefits. I sat there with my mouth agape because I had been persuaded that there was no such thing as homosexual ministers. I arose to object and that created its own fun firestorm until one of the tenured Ministers realized that this discussion was not going well and was able to table it.

Over the years I witnessed many amazing things at these District meetings and I will return to more of these shocking things in subsequent installments. Most commonly what shell-shocked me was the low snake-shit standard for ordination. I saw a man ordained who couldn’t answer one question put to them. (I kid you not –not one.) I witnessed another chap get ordained who had no answer to the question; “What is Original Sin.” Another chap, when asked “what books he enjoyed reading,” responded with, “I don’t really like reading books.” Another chap I saw ordained explicitly denied “Justification by Faith Alone.” More than one chap could not explain the meaning of infant-Baptism. I saw one woman ordained who told us that as a chaplain she was not allowed to be explicit about the necessity of Jesus Christ for salvation with the dying patients she ministered to in the hospital per hospital policy and that she abided by that rule. I saw another woman ordained whose husband was a deacon in the Roman Catholic Church. It was so bad that I finally got to the point where I just checked out of the meetings. If I went I would sit in the back by myself and listen to lectures on my Zune or read a book. I can honestly say these were some of the most enraging, depressing, and discouraging moments in my life. To see the Church of Jesus Christ be staffed with such people and to see the Church of Jesus Christ not care about who they were staffing the Church with just ripped my heart out.

Finally, in 2009, fourteen years after serving as “stated supply” for this mission Church the denomination decided that they better push hard to make me official. After a great deal of wrangling characterized by my previous foot-dragging on these issues, the District finally corralled me into agreeing to take a one-week hermeneutics class at their Grand Rapids Seminary. I had angled for a Church history class dealing with the Continental Dutch Church but they insisted on hermeneutics.

And so I suffered through a week of hermeneutics as taught by someone who embraced higher criticism and subsequently stood for an ordination exam. The only person who gave me a hard time was Dr. Lugnut but it should be known that I gave as good as I got from Dr. Lugnut during his attempt at grilling me. I passed the ordination exam despite Dr. Lugnut’s fury with my position on women in office (I opposed it) without any problems though according to the denominations Book of Church Order it was not a legitimate ordination exam since there were only two representatives from Synod present as opposed to the required three. (The BCO used the language; “There shall be three officers from synod present.”) So, I passed the exam but not by the Denomination’s own standards.

Further, by the denomination’s own standards I was never finally ordained in the Denomination. I really wasn’t conversant with the Book of Church Order and only later had to become conversant with it and so I did not know that the BCO required ordained men in the denomination to be present at Ordination/Installation services in order to ordain and install me. I did not have any denominationally ordained men at my ordination/installation service and so according to the denomination’s own book of church order I was never officially ordained in the denomination. In point of fact, I did not have any ordained men from any denomination present at my ordination/installation service. So, per their own book of Church order, I never sustained a legitimate ordination exam and I was never legitimately ordained in their denomination. I learned this only when I was seeking to leave the denomination – which according to their own BCO I did not have to do since I was never in their denomination per their own standards, to begin with. It was the oddest thing. Here I was resigning from a denomination I was never a part of and requesting a release from a denomination in which I had never been accepted.

Jerry Seinfeld captured this situation perfectly,


Trump Exposes Division in Visible Church

It is interesting that God has used the whole Trump phenomenon to expose the cleavage that has existed in the Church for quite some time now as between the Biblical Christians on one side and the Cultural Marxist / R2K “Christians” on the other side of the chasm. This has been seen again most recently with the hue and outcry being breathed out by the Liberation theology type Churches over what they consider to be the absconding of their Christian symbols as used in the Trump march. These types expressed by the likes of Wheaton College, and Third Avenue Baptist Church in Louisville Kentucky (Where Al Mohler attends). These and others have been hyperventilating that Jesus was desecrated by the Christians marching on 06 January 2021 in DC. They are doing all they can to create distance between themselves and those who marched in DC.

Now, as a large contingency of those marching in DC are from the Pentecostal strain of Christianity I have my own problems with many in that crew of marchers – enough so that I also don’t really care to be associated with their erratic theology and behavior. However, on the issue of where the chief danger in this country lies count me a Pentecostal fanboy. On this subject, the Pentecostal ecstatics are far closer to the truth than the “we want to be as close as possible to those who hate Christ and still claim to be distinct” Evangelicals who populate the R2K “Reformed,” Southern Baptist, and Evangelical world. For simplicity’s sake let’s call them the “Soy Boy” crowd.

The Soy Boy crowd communicate that they desperately desire to be neutral in the current kulturkampf that we are experiencing. They consistently suggest that Jesus doesn’t really care about the kulturkampf and that for all they know Antonio Gramsci may be as close to the truth on cultural matters as R. L. Dabney was though they are certain that R. J. Rushdoony is a dunce. On one hand, they present a studied indifference to the kulturkampf while on the other hand, they are constantly letting their slip show that there is more Herbert Marcuse about them on cultural issues than there is John Calvin. They are forever raising dire warnings about “Christian America” theology but are never heard sounding the klaxon on the Sovietization of America. They trip all over themselves rushing to the mic to denounce Pastors who have opened their Churches to worship Christ (looking at you RSC) while at the same time you never hear a peep from them in denouncing those who are forbidding us from worshiping Christ and doing so via contrived reasoning. They seem to be blind to the irony of strip joints and pot dispenser businesses remaining open while the houses that are responsible for Word and Sacrament remain under tight closure orders in many states. John Knox wouldn’t recognize them as ministers of Christ. Neither do I.

These chaps spent too much time reading Harvey Conn, Meredith Kline, and the Frankfurt authors and not enough time reading Calvin, Knox, and Rutherford. Their studies find them more beholden to humanist authors than Christian authors. They are passing that legacy on to those who will pilot pulpits in the West today.

The Reformed Church in the West needs another grand Reformation and it needs that Reformation as coming out of the “conservative” Reformed denominations.

Revoice Conference Real Quotes vs. A Future Revoice Conference Fake Quotes

Here is a sampling of some of the main speakers at the looming Revoice conference regarding their thoughts on whether their homosexual desires are sinful or not, or rather, whether they really struggle with them. Following the italicized quote I have interjection in standard type the same sentiment but only as related to a sexual perversion that has not yet become acceptable to the “Christian” mind. The purpose for doing so is to expose the fact that these quotes being found acceptable proves that the larger Christian public has already accepted the normalcy of sodomy. This is proven by the fact that the inserted fake quotes created by me would find Christians being morally repulsed. Keep in mind that all these italicized quotes are from speakers who would label themselves, “Gay but celibate.” The point in the varied italicized quotes is that homosexual desires are perfectly fine as long as those desires are not followed through to become live physical same-sex engagement. The point in the varied non italicized quotes is to demonstrate how much homosexuality has been accepted by demonstrating how the same sentiment as applied to some other heretofore  agreed upon perverted sexual desire would leave Christians with a moral sense of unease.

“I really think the most important thing is, I really like being gay and I really like being Catholic” ~Eve Tushnet

“I really think the most important thing is, I really like being a necrophiliac and I really like being Catholic.” – Evelyn Nettush

“I believe my same-sex attractions are broken, but I do not believe they are sinful. It is not a sin for me to be attracted to another man, in the same way it is not sinful for you (a man) to be attracted to a woman.” ~Stephen Moss, Organizer of Revoice

I believe my animal-sex attractions are broken, but I do not believe they are sinful. It is not sinful for me to be attracted to an animal, in the same way it is not sinful for you (a man) to be attracted to a woman.  -Steven Mossberg

 “Simply experiencing attraction to the same sex (or being gay) is not in itself a morally culpable sin.” ~Nate Collins

“Simply experiencing attraction to dead bodies (or being necrophiliac) is not in itself a morally culpable sin.” -Tom Collins

“SSA can be a product of the Fall—like blindness—and yet not be a morally culpable sin.” ~Preston Sprinkle

“Coprophilia attraction can be a product of the fall — like blindness — and yet not be a morally culpable sin.”  – T. Inkle Sprinkle

“I do not believe homosexuality in itself is a sin as that would imply our basic human desires for things such as intimacy and beauty would be inherently sinful.” ~Jeb Ralston

“I do not believe bestiality in itself is a sin as that would imply our basic human desires for things such as intimacy and beauty would be inherently sinful. -Deb Ralston Purina

“My main worry with some of the “renunciation” and “surrender” and “death to self” language that Christians use in relation to homosexuality is that, for most people, it will end up implying that we believe all aspects of “being gay” are sinful. This is a devastating burden for many same-sex attracted Christians to bear” ~Wesley Hill

“My main worry with some of the “renunciation” and “surrender” and “death to self” language that Christians use in relation to fang bang is that, for most people, it will end up implying that we believe all aspects of “being a fang bang” are sinful. This is a devastating burden for many fang bang attracted Christians to bear.”- Jon Wesley

Again, the point in contrasting these real quotes in relation to a long acknowledge sexual perversion in conjunction with fake quotes in relation to long acknowledge sexual perversion is to shock the reader who thinks the real quotes are reasonable into seeing that the reason that they see the real quotes as reasonable is that they have already accepted, in principle, how reasonable same sex attraction is.

For a far more erudite discussion of the problems with “Gay Christianity” and the Revoice Conference see,

Full Homosexual Inclusion in the PCA?

Newly Discovered Letter From Uncle Screwtape to Wormwood …”Destroy Distinctions”

Yesterday I was doing some research in the libray and I came across an old book titled, “From the Cutting Floor.” It contained passages from classics that ended up, for one reason or another, being edited out of the final published work.

The following passage did not make it into C. K. Lewis’ “Screwtap Letters.”

My Dear Wormwood,

Word us gone out from our Father below that an all-out assault on that which went by the detestable name of “Christendom” must be pursued. Even old Slubgob is going to be forced from behind his desk and be sent to the new front. Doubtless, once the fighting gets hot all resources will be poured in there.

Until the day arrives we are to prepare the ground by continuing our work in and among our assigned deep state human minions.  Remember, our motto here continues to be, “By way of deception, thou shalt do war.”

Our goal here remains the pulling down of the Enemy and his influence. The task that we’ve been assigned for the softening up phase of the recently announced assault is to make the minds of our oblivious humans no longer capable of making any distinctions at all. It really doesn’t matter what those distinctions are, our goal is to make damn sure that humans continue to embrace the facile idea that distinctions are evil and that noticing the differences that proper distinctions bring forth is a blasphemy worthy of being criminalized over. The fact that we are at this stage means our work thus far has been a success. Even the bureaucrats at HQ, Bleedbeard and Remphan have admitted as much.

However, we must not rest on our previous successes. We must continue to push our advantage against the Enemy. We must continue to resist, for now, the direct assault, and instead, do our sidewinder work.  As I’ve taught you since you took this assignment, frontal assaults are not the work of Junior or even Senior Tempters. Our goal is to destroy people and peoples without them even knowing they’ve been destroyed.

As this remain true, in preparation for the grand assault planned, we are to continue to loosen people from those loyalties that the cursed Enemy has always used as his means of determining the ground where the fighting would be done. We have forever been fighting on his terrain. Our job is make him fight on our terrain.  The way we go about that is to detach the verminseed (humans) from their natural loyalties. We are to detach them from their natural attachments of family, place, people, and faith. In doing so we isolate them from any context and support nexus that they might rely upon in order to withstand our coming direct assault.

Concretely this means we must continue to champion Internationalism in our politics pressing for a Globalist order which will eliminate the cursed idea of Nations. We must be careful here. We thought we had this battle won long ago at a place called Babel, but the Enemy decided to Nuke our work there and we’ve been in repair mode ever since.

This work of eliminating nations is part and parcel of the work of destroying distinctions. We do want our verminseed thinking in terms of borders or people groups. The presence of these kinds of macro distinctions in the verminseed’s heads makes it easier for them to continue to see the macro distinction that is the goal of all our destructive work; to wit, the Creator – Creature distinction. And so my dear Wormwood, your goal is to continue to sell Globalism. If you’re doing your job well you will make Globalism so attractive that it will be seen as the Christian (cursed be that word) position.  Our highly placed “Christian” (cursed be that word) Clergy will teach this is the only position for those who believe in the Fatherhood of the Enemy and the Brotherhood of all men. Always keep before you that the goal here isn’t really Internationalism or Globalism. These are just means by which the real goal is arrived at and that is the destruction of that vile, maggot infested, bloody thing called the Christian (cursed be that word) faith.

The work of eliminating ethnic, family, and gender, distinctions follows from this Wormy.  We will obliterate that bent and twisted faith called Christianity (cursed be that word), not by direct assault on the King of the Enemy above but rather as by sideways in pulling down all the Enemy’s infrastructure and institutions. We will eliminate the sense of belonging to ethnic and family structures. In doing so we will strip from people any idea that worthwhile distinctions exist in their identity. By belonging to everyone they will belong to no one and by belonging to no one they will then be ripe fruit falling into the hands of those who teach that there is nothing to live and die for and no religion too. If we can convince the verminseed that they have no identity then we can convince them easily that distinct identity itself is wicked. If they belong to no people, if they are neither masculine nor feminine, if family has no connection to blood so that any combination can be arrived at as “family,” if we can so reinterpret their faith as that which teaches and supports a distinctionless world then we have finally achieved our precious tabula rasa and we ourselves can start writing our full story upon them via the work of our social engineers Fathers Grimgrit and Glewglaub.

Keep in mind that in all this one of our oldest tools remains our best tool. From the beginning, we have used the tool of Gnosticism to leverage them away from their corporeality. This is what we are still doing here in the modern world. We want them to disassociate themselves from their humanness. Get them so focused on being “Spiritual beings” that they conclude that acknowledging their corporeal identity as given to them by the Enemy is immature and even sinful. Sell hard the idea that our Father below himself came up with; “As Christians (cursed be that word) all are spiritually one, therefore, race, or ethnicity, or gender, or place does not matter because all are one in the Enemy’s King.” Tease out the implications for them and do so my using our Clergy henchman. Have our Clergy minions teach from their romper room pulpits that The Enemy above is pleased with all colors bleeding into one. Remember, Distinctions are the enemy and if we can so maul and bloody the reputation of distinctions then the Christian (cursed be that word) will forever be defeated. The defeat of Christianity and Christendom (cursed be those words) is the ultimate goal here. Everything else is subservient to that end.

Of course, it’s been policy since the spread of Christianity (cursed be that word) to Europe to especially seek to destroy the White European Civilization. They have been public Enemy #1 on our hit list in order to pull down that pretender who sits in Heaven above. It’s not that we think that the White European is special. Indeed, in and of himself he most certainly is not. But for whatever reason, that Old Fool in Heaven above has decided to set the White European people apart to be the carriers of his damnable religion. As such, if we destroy the Nations of the White European people we destroy the White European Civilization and if we destroy White European Civilization then we destroy the Christian (cursed be that word) faith as it has uniquely existed as a Civilizational creating reality. Sure, even once this is accomplished there will remain flotsam and jetsam non-European micro Christian civilizations that will have to be mopped up but if we bring down the White-European beast all others will soon follow. Cut off the head and the rest of the body will die. This is why your attack on the evil white man must continue Wormwood. Never let up on your rending and tearing of the Christian (cursed be that word) White-European’s wicked history of oppression and victimizing. Keep telling our hackneyed story of Colonialism and Conquering. Keep impressing upon their children how the world would have been a better place had it not been for Christian (cursed be that word) White culture. The critical theory of our foot soldiers, the Cultural Marxists, is our friend here.

I’ve spent time here encouraging you to do your work Wormwood but now I must give the other side of the coin. If you fail, if the ideas of Christian Nationalism and Patriotism and Patriarchy are allowed to return as ascendant, if White European Christian Civilization makes a comeback, if the recognition of ethnicity, family, gender, and place waxes strong again, if Distinctions are once again recognized as Enemy above honoring  you and everyone else responsible will be reduced to ash. There will be no leniency. We have not done all this work to turn a blind eye to an incompetence that makes us lose all. Losses like those suffered at Babel, and Golgotha, and Tours, and Vienna, and Lepanto will not go unpunished and you know how our Father below excels in punishing those who have disappointed him.

So, your first assignment is to bring the heretofore “conservative” Church into the fold of our war outlined above. Your task is to weaponize the Church against the ideas of nation, ethnicity, family, gender, and place. I don’t care if your clergy clients weaponize the new Christianity (cursed be that word) as willing tools or as duped fools, but weaponize it against distinctions they must. Put the language of our brethren, the Cultural Marxists, on the lips of the Clergy. Make the clergy turn the politics of the Cultural Marxist into the politics of the Enemy above. That shouldn’t be hard. We’ve been doing that for over 100 years now.

You’re safe as long as you do your job. Fail to do your job Wormwood and I will be your first and worst enemy.

Uncle Screwtape

Rev. McAtee contra Rev. Dr. Keller on Good Doctrine Being a Problem in Today’s Western Church

Starting @ the :52 second mark and ending at the 1:29 point

“I actually do think some people make an idol out of doctrine because there are sectors of the church that say if you have your doctrine straight, and if you have your doctrine right then you’re pleasing to God and  then you are part of the solution, not the problem and you’re not like all these other parts of the church that are very heretical.

There is a pride and a smugness about having good doctrine that, to me,  puts doctrine almost in the place of the saving grace of Jesus Christ and so it becomes an idol.”

Rev. Dr. Tim Keller, Pastor
Redeemer Presbyterian PCA,
New York City, NY

Rev. McAtee responds,


Rev. McAtee responds,

1.) Certainly, we must concede that as anything can be turned into an idol and so even doctrine can be turned into an idol. However, if and when that point has arrived the question that must be asked is whether or not the doctrine is the problem or whether the idolator is the problem. Of course, the problem is not the doctrine since it is only doctrine which will rescue the idolater from their making doctrine an idol.

2.) Keep in mind that if someone really has straight and right doctrine then it is not possible to be involved in idolatry since straight and right doctrine, by definition, is not compatible with idolatry. Indeed if one is making an idol of doctrine their doctrine certainly is neither straight, good nor right.  This is a large part of the confusion inherent in this statement by the Rev. Dr. Keller.

3.) Keep in mind that the only solution for those who have turned doctrine into an idol is to tell them to return to doctrine. Since the problem is not with the doctrine but with the idolator the only thing that is going to solve their idolatry is more doctrine. As the problem isn’t the doctrine the only solution is doctrine. If someone has turned doctrine into an idol they can only be reached by giving them true doctrine. As such, contrary to the Rev. Dr. Keller, the doctrine isn’t a problem.

4.) Obviously, we are pleasing to God only as being in Christ and coming under His protection and covering. However, that is a doctrine that I must have straight before I am pleasing to God. God is pleased when we by searching the Scriptures look to see what it is that we should believe (doctrine) in order to honor God. Now, while as a judge God is either pleased with us or not, as a Father God is more pleased with His children who search out Christ wherein are the treasures of all wisdom and knowledge (i.e. — doctrine). That this is so, is seen in how the Lord Christ deals with the seven Churches in Revelation. All Churches are Christians. Five churches are condemned for some weaknesses that the Lord was displeased with while two were only commended. God was more pleased by their faithfulness to the true doctrine than he was with those who were not faithful to true doctrine.

5.) Would to God that every sector of the Church would connect increasingly straight doctrine with God, as Father, being increasingly pleased with us. What other option is there? Would we say that God isn’t increasingly pleased as we are led by the Spirit to increasingly get our doctrine straight? Is God non-plussed over whether our doctrine is increasingly straight or increasingly crooked?

6.) People with crooked doctrine are part of the problem, no matter their good intentions. In the same way, people with straight and right doctrine are part of the solution.

7.) Would the Rev. Dr. Kell have us pray that our doctrine would not be good so that we would not suffer from pride and smugness?

8.) Rev. Dr. Keller complains about doctrine being put in the place of the saving grace of Jesus Christ and yet the whole idea of the saving grace of Jesus Christ is a doctrine that we’ve been warned against as having right, straight, or good.

9.) Rev. Dr. Keller worries about pride and smugness and idolatry and rightfully so. However, each of those is an issue of improper orthopraxy (right behavior). As proper orthopraxy can only be present where good, straight, and right proper orthodoxy (doctrine) first exists we realize that we can never steer clear of improper orthopraxy (pride, smugness, and idolatry) unless we are good, straight, and right, in our orthodoxy (doctrine).

10.) Some sectors of the Church are indeed very heretical and they are heretical precisely because their understanding of the truth as it is found in Jesus Christ is severely deficient.

Some might say, “Come on Rev. McAtee, you know what he means.” To that my response is, “I’d like to think I know what he means, but I honestly am not sure.” The Rev. Dr. Keller has had his bell rung on certain doctrinal issues that are important and where he has been less than clear upon. Is this a complaint on his part that people who dare disagree with him on his doctrine are examples of those who are pride, smug, and idolatrous?

Look, in our irrational age, it strikes me as passing odd to complain that one of the major problems of the Church is that it is over precise when it comes to its doctrine. This is like warning someone suffering from hypothermia that there is danger in sunstroke.