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LBC Does Not Follow The Bible!
Laurelglen Bible Church, located at 2801 Ashe Road, Bakersfield, CA (93309), follows after the deceit of this age (2 Peter 2:1-2; 2 Timothy 3:1-5; 4:3). Even though Laurelglen has "Bible" in their name, they do not hold fast to the Words of the living God.
I. Denies The Power Of Godliness, and Peddles The Word Of God
For example, in their "Easter celebration" In Touch Weekly, (April 4, 1999) on page 3 & 5 they had the following announcement:
Wouldn't it be great to experience God's deliverance from the bondage of worldly addictions? Learn to replace your earthly gods with an everlasting relationship with the one true God through an 'Exodus From Strongholds' Workshop. Cost is $88 for a 12 week seminar. Come join us for a free orientation/information meeting Monday, April 26, at 7:00 pm in the Junior High Room (#C-9). (bold added)
This is so blatantly against the Bible it's not funny! First of all, since this workshop is suppose to be for believers (we have been told it is), Laurelglen completely denies Christ's words in John 8:31-36, Paul's words in Romans 2:6-10; 6:16-22; 8:5-14; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 5:19-21; 6:7-8; Ephesians 5:5-6, and John's words in 1 John 2:3-4 and 3:4-10. If a person is saved (a believer), then they have already been delivered "from the bondage of worldly addictions" and have replaced any "earthly gods with an everlasting relationship with the one true God." If they haven't, they are not saved (see the above Scriptures). Since this "workshop" is suppose to be for those who are already saved, then Laurelglen is NOT a "Bible" Church, but rather a church that denies the power of godliness (2 Timothy 3:5).
Furthermore, this "workshop" is suppose to be also for unbelievers (we have been told that it is also for unbelievers). Whether it be for unbelievers or believers, Laurelglen is among the "so many" who peddle the word of God (2 Corinthians 2:17). It is absolutely WICKED to charge $88 for the gospel! AND, it is the gospel of Jesus Christ, and ONLY the gospel of Jesus Christ, that will (and can) set anyone free "from the bondage of worldly addictions" and give them the power "to replace [their] earthly gods with an everlasting relationship with the one true God."
Actually, it is not the true gospel that Laurelglen is giving. The true gospel does not take a 12 week seminar to "Learn to replace . . . earthly gods with an everlasting relationship with the one true God" and be set free "from the bondage of worldly addictions." The true gospel is not that complicated! In fact, what is the true gospel? In short, it is found in Romans 10:9-10, "That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, . . . ."
II. Partakers With False Teachers
Rather than exposing the works of darkness (Ephesians 5:11), Laurelglen has fellowship with them. In the same In Touch Weekly mentioned above, on page 6 they had an ad for Focus On The Family's "Life on the Edge" tour in Ontario, California (for May 21-22). In this ad they encourage people "to register, call Focus on the Family at 719/531-9300." Focus on the Family is Dr. James Dobson's ministry. Dr. Dobson is a false teacher! He is filled with psychological deceit (He is a psychologist) and propagates the false gospel of self-esteem. In fact, just as one example of this, note what Dr. Dobson wrote in his book entitled, What Wives Wish Their Husbands Knew About Women,
Joyce Landorf, the gifted authoress of His Stubborn Love, recently asked people to answer the following question: What would you change about women in general if you could wave some magic wand? My answer, which is now published with the other replies in her book The Fragrance of Beauty, is quoted below: If I could write a prescription for the women of the world, I would provide each one of them with a healthy dose of self-esteem and personal worth (taken three times a day until the symptoms disappear). I have no doubt that this is their greatest need. (p. 35, bold added)
Dobson has "no doubt that this is their greatest need."! Who is Dr. Dobson speaking of? Christians? Non-Christians? He says, ". . . the women of the world,". What is the greatest need for ANY woman? The Lord Jesus Christ! It is NOT ". . . a healthy dose of self-esteem and personal worth . . ."! This is "another gospel" (Galatians 1:8-9).
Actually to teach self-esteem is to teach the exact opposite of the Word of God. Contrary to esteeming oneself, God says, "Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him." (Proverbs 26:12). And, "He who trusts in his own heart is a fool, . . . " (Proverbs 28:26). To esteem yourself (self-confidence, etc.) is to trust in yourself. God says, "Cursed is the man who trusts in man . . ." (Jeremiah 17:5).
Besides endorsing Dobson's ministry, Laurelglen endorses Josh McDowell, who is likewise a promoter of the self-esteem teaching (e.g. see McDowell's book, Building Your Self-Image). In Laurelglen's Winter 98-99 In Touch quarterly, on page 6 they had this ad:
Singles Safari Arrowhead Springs Conference Center is sponsoring it's annual singles retreat featuring speaker Josh McDowell on June 11-13. The cost is $130.
Just as an example of McDowell's error, note the following quote from his book, The Secret of Loving. In the context of buying himself five dozen flowers and placing them all over his room, he writes,
"And every time I look at a dozen flowers, it's going to be God saying to me, 'Josh, I love you. Josh, I accept you. Josh, I forgive you. Josh, as the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Josh, you're special!' I'll look at each dozen flowers and hear God saying, 'Josh, you're of great value. I created you in My image. Josh, you're unique.'" (p.34)
God warns us of such false Christians in 2 Timothy 3:1-2 when He says,
But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves.
III. The Christmas Lie
Another example of Laurelglen following the deceit of this age and not the Bible can be found by their espousal of Christmas (see the winter 98-99 In Touch quarterly, "Making Traditions a Part of Your Christmas"). The celebration of Christmas is nowhere found in all of holy writ. It comes from the unholy and demonic (1 Timothy 4:1f) Catholic church. The date, December 25, comes from the birthday of the false god "Mithra" (see your local library on the history of Christmas). The term Christmas comes from the blasphemous term "Christ-mass", which refers to the Catholic mass in which "Christ" is sacrificed again and again at each mass (contrary to Hebrews 9:28).
Moreover, the "Christ" of Christmas is a false christ. The christ of Christmas is loved by the world ("believer" and non-believer). Just listen in the supermarkets around Xmas time to the songs like, "Away In A Manger", and "Silent Night". The true Christ is not loved by this world, but is actually hated (John 15:18-19). While yet a babe, it was said of the true Christ that He would be "spoken against" (Luke 2:34). For the most part, the "Christ" of Christmas is NOT spoken against. This should let any true believer know, it is not the true Christ.
The celebration of Christmas is a deceptive lie from the Catholic Church that gets people to NOT worship God "in spirit and in truth" (John 4:24), and to follow after a deceptive spirit (the spirit of Christmas).
IV. The Broad Way
All of the above are just examples that Laurelglen is on the broad way that Jesus warned about in Matthew 7:13-14. Laurelglen does not expose false teachers (2 Peter 2:1-2) who are "among us" (like Dobson, McDowell, Billy Graham, John MacArthur, et. al.), but actually promotes some of them. God warns those who follow the Bible that there is going to be a proliferation of false Christianity in the last days (2 Timothy 3:1-5; 4:3; 2 Peter 2:1-2; Luke 18:8; etc.). Laurelglen is just one example that is in the "heap" (2 Timothy 4:3) in the false Christian world.
May God have mercy on your soul, and open your eyes, and grant you "the love of the truth, that [you] might be saved." (2 Thessalonians 2:10). For any further information, please write, call, or see our web site.