He put a bullet in his head or so he tried. We’re talking about Nels Crux. That’s his real name. Sounds like he is kneeling before a cross. Kinda sums him up, though. You would think that was a good thing, right? I’m not sure.
Nels was the pastor in Pergamum. I had known him for years. Just as Dr. Carp had been raised through this type of thinking and was supremely arrogant, so Nels was a royal pain in the leg.
Nels was like a bad sports coach. He would get great ideas and then have other people carry them out. He wanted me to do a podcast on the Bible. Great idea. Not so easy to execute. So in preparation, I wrote a commentary on the entire Bible, Old and New testaments, Psalms and Proverbs. Wonderful idea! I had my stroke during that time.
He was going to promote it. He did. To all his friends but after a few months he decided he didn’t agree that God loves everyone. He believed that God didn’t expect people to reciprocate and love Him back! Duh! No, this heresy teaches that God chooses some and discards the rest into everlasting perdition!* It makes a neat package but results in an impotent, empty faith. And it gives me agita and causes the contents of my stomach to churn! Even worst, I notice a lot of those who adhere to this nonsense become desperately depressed. OK, maybe even worse they may not end up going to Heaven.
Nels, with his great ideas, asked me to go around town and video YouTube videos. I did it. Others who had the same dogma, mocked them. I guess sometimes I just don’t learn.
I did a video on how to pray. I thought it showed a little sense of humor. It was short and at the end of it I bowed my head and was silent. Then I looked up and said, “Isn’t that easy?”
I did another one on how to read the Bible. I took out a Bible and opened it. Then I looked down and was silent for a few seconds and again, exclaimed, “Isn’t that easy?” Hmm. It amused me anyway.
So why was Nels left here on earth after the Big Draft? And why did he try tooff himself? Well, you would have to figure that out yourself. I’ll give you some hints, though.
He was part of a large segment of “christian-dumb” that believed that God chose them and they really didn’t have anything to do with it. That was the foundation of their doctrine. It was closely linked to the doctrine of the sovereignty of God. Before the Great Snatch, those kinds of ideas had spread across the world. I was even taught a modified version of it in my school.
Don’t get me wrong. I certainly believe in the supremacy of God and His sovereignty over the universe. But I think we have to learn the entire Bible and we should believe everything in it. There are no shortcuts. People always want shortcuts in their belief systems. This particular heresy majors in imbalances like an overemphasis on sovereignty. It was rtso widespread that it had spread like a cancer into the majority of churches and seminaries.
Would it sound great to major on God’s supremacy of the world? It is. But not to the exclusion of people’s ability to choose God. Without a person’s being able to choose God, there is no relationship between them and God. The Bible is all about God having a relationship with humankind. C.S. Lewis handles this nicely in his book, Mere Christianity.** All basic Christian theologies center on the idea of having an association with God.
Maybe that is why Nels got left behind. Maybe he never had had a relationship with God.
That brings us to the church in Pergamum. They all believe this hogwash. It’s sad. Of course, they are powerless. And most of them survived the Great Draft. Only a few were evacuated in the Rapture.
Now I have been called to preach to them. Lucky me!
I knew I was going to have a tough audience on Sunday.
(To be continued . . . .)
- Deut. 30:19 “I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants . . .”
** see 2 Peter 3:9 for God not consigning anyone to Hell: “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” emphasis mine