Sunday, March 19, 2017


republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, and research purposes:
 This morning I spoke at the Young America’s Foundation conference at the
 Reagan Ranch Center in Santa Barbara, California on Trump’s immigration
 ban and why the judicial blocks on it are illegitimate.


republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, and research purposes:
By Kelleigh Nelson
March 19, 2017
Shortly after Donald Trump announced the nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, it was revealed that Gorsuch had picked a Henry Kissinger quotation to caption his 1988 Columbia yearbook photograph: “The illegal we do immediately, the unconstitutional takes a little longer.” -Henry Kissinger, August 29, 1967

It’s an odd remark for someone whose primary credential is his supposed textual fidelity to the Constitution, but then people often change from their college days. Yet many questions remain about our President’s first nominee for the Supreme Court.
In nominating Tenth Circuit Judge Neil Gorsuch, a Harvard Law School graduate who was unanimously confirmed to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in 2006 by George W. Bush, President Trump believes he has effectively chosen to restore the Court to the status quo. Unfortunately, a number of strong Constitutional conservatives are not so sure.
In my February article, The Pros and Cons of Judge Neil M. Gorsuch, I stated the facts as we knew them, hoping my readers would come to their own decision on the man, but now even more about this judge has come to light. There are some good things, and there are some very disturbing things that we need to immediately consider.
A very troubling factor to me was the fact that Neil Gorsuch was a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations, listed in the 2008 CFR Annual Report Membership Roster. He is not listed in the 2017 Annual Report, but is listed as a member in his 2006 nomination by President George W. Bush. (See part 8)
Gorsuch on Executive Privilege
Judge Gorsuch’s record indicates that he is neither a staunch defender nor a harsh critic of immigrants’ rights. (We’re talking about illegal immigrants here.) In his time on the bench, Judge Gorsuch has dealt with only a handful of prominent immigration law cases. Of those, he has ruled in favor of the immigrant slightly less than half of the time.
However, while Judge Gorsuch and Justice Scalia are similar in many ways, many have noted that they disagreed sharply on how much deference to give to federal agencies’ interpretations of the law.
Under what’s known as “Chevron deference,” courts play only a limited role in reviewing an agency’s interpretation of a law within its area of expertise. Although Justice Scalia was a staunch supporter of this principle, Judge Gorsuch has openly criticized Chevron deference, asserting instead that only judges should get to decide what the law is.
Do you see the danger here? This would lead anyone to understand that Judge Gorsuch could side with the tyrannical judges who have stopped the Constitutionally legal executive orders of our President, Donald J. Trump, who wishes to limit the influx of Islamic foreigners immigrating to the United States, (foreigners who may well be a danger to American citizens that our President has sworn to protect), to oppose our President’s Constitutional duty and legality.
To top it off, our globalist Vice President is taking the exact opposite opinion of his boss and saying, “A judge ‘certainly’ has the right to stop Trump’s travel ban.” I’m sorry, VP Pence, but the Constitution allows the Executive branch to deny entry into the United States. [Link] It has been done in the past by Democrats Jimmy Carter, and Barack Hussein Obama. The President has sworn to protect American citizens!
Remember VP Pence’s pledge of commitment to the unelected councils (read Soviet) of the dictatorial European Union! [Link] And, God forbid anything happens to our President because with globalist Pence, you can forget the wall, forget repealing Obamacare, forget stopping the trade deals, and everything else that encouraged us all to vote for the man who spoke our language.
Gorsuch on Travel Ban
The Drudge Report revealed a Bloomberg article where some experts and academics say Gorsuch’s criticism of executive overreach in the Gutierrez-Brizuela case and others could lead him to reach decisions at odds with the 45th president’s policies. The judge’s thinking in those cases is likely to be a subject of intense interest in confirmation hearings next week.
Here’s the Bloomberg Story:
A Mexican immigrant who twice entered the U.S. illegally has one man in particular to thank for being able to live and work in Oklahoma City with his family -- Judge Neil M. Gorsuch.
Gorsuch, the nominee President Donald Trump is betting on to be his Supreme Court tie-breaker, wrote a 2016 ruling permitting Hugo Rosario Gutierrez-Brizuela to stay in the U.S. and, his lawyer hopes, within a few years become a citizen.
“Without it we were done," said Timothy Cook, the attorney. Had the decision gone the other way, Gutierrez-Brizuela would have been promptly deported, he said.
As Trump vows to fight all the way to the nation’s top court to preserve his temporary ban on travel from six mostly Muslim nations and immigration agents turn to more aggressive tactics on city streets, Gorsuch’s conservative credentials have been hailed as likely to swing the divided court in the president’s favor.
But as lawmakers scrutinize Gorsuch’s decade-long tenure on a federal appeals court for clues about how he might rule on hot-button issues such as abortion and gun control, his record shows that on immigration rights, he can’t be easily categorized.
Moreover, some experts and academics say Gorsuch’s criticism of executive overreach in the Gutierrez-Brizuela case and others could lead him to reach decisions at odds with the Republican president’s policies. The judge’s thinking in those cases is likely to be a subject of intense interest in confirmation hearings next week.
I am not at all convinced that this choice coming from the left leaning Federalist Society is one that will resonate with the Trump supporting American electorate. 

Gorsuch belongs to an extremely liberal, pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage church, and he and his wife and daughters are very involved in this church.
Secondly, Gorsuch’s stance in this Gutierrez-Brizuela case would worry anyone about American citizens’ safety with this judge on the Supreme Court.

Please pray for our President, and pray for our nation. And above all, get off your couch and get involved. Run for a county commissioner seat, city council, school board, whatever. Trump is giving us an opportunity of a lifetime to take America back, if not for yourself do it for your grandchildren. The corrupt swamp is not just in Washington DC, it's also in your state, county and city government as well.
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republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, and research purposes:
The SBC pastor closes his blog entry endorsement with this statement:
“Both Al Mohler and Paul Young believe the same thing about God’s unconditional love and Christ’s effectual death. They just disagree for whom it was intended. So go and enjoy the Shack. It is not heresy.”
Consider now a distinctly different comment from another pastor.
“If the leadership of your church does not vocally, openly, and staunchly oppose the theology presented by “The Shack,” you need to find a new church. It is really that simple. If they cannot spot the heresy in this book, they are not qualified to protect the flock from false doctrine – not in the least. They are not shepherds; they are hirelings who are more than willing to open the gate and let the wolves come in and ravage the flock.   Don’t walk, RUN from that place!”
In light of these two opposing pastoral recommendations, if you were to find yourself standing at the proverbial fork in the road of faith, with each pastor standing on his own path, beckoning you to follow, which would you choose? If you are a Bible-centered, Bible-informed, genuinely regenerate believer, to err on the side of orthodox caution and Berean discernment seems not only the proper thing to do, but also the one most likely to keep you on the tough-to-trod, narrow path. To take the more heavily trod path – in this case, meaning to follow the multitudes who extol the power, grandeur, and emotions-evoking power of The Shack – would necessarily imply taking the wider, easier path, skipping gleefully along with the glowing, celebrity-laden endorsements that make it just sooo appealing.   (Deception, mind you, just like sin, is always appealing.)
SBC Pastor Wade Burleson
The opening, encouraging quote comes from Wade Burleson, lead pastor of Emmanuel Enid, a Southern Baptist church located in Enid, Oklahoma. Burleson, a former IMB trustee (he resigned in 2009 over Board charges that he violated non-disclosure, code of conduct protocols by publishing on his blog some details of the non-transparent proceedings of the Board, according to Baptist Press), penned his endorsement of The Shack (multiple entries, actually, laud the work of author William Paul Young) on Istoria Ministries Blog.  (Burleson’s endorsement of
(Burleson’s endorsement of The Shack should, perhaps, be considered in light of his Feb. 16, 2017 entry in which he also promotes a Jesus Culture video.  Jesus Culture is the flagship music group from the thoroughly heretical Bethel Church, FYI.  This speaks volumes, of course, to this pastor’s woeful capacity for exercising Biblical discernment.)
In a 2009 blog post defending the book The Shack, Burleson made jest of LifeWay’s then response to concerns about the book by marking it with a “Read With Discernment” label.  He emphasized that “the book is a work of fiction.”  (Emphasis original)  What may have been the case in 2009 would be today, after the release of the movie, a difficult claim to defend.  The Shack Small Group Study Kit and Study Guide are being marketed by one of the movies “partners,” Outreach, Inc.  Why, one wonders, would a work of “fiction” need a church or small group study guide if it were being proffered for merely allegorical, entertainment purposes?

Burleson’s blog entry from February 2, 2017, serves up a response of sorts to Albert Mohler’s article that soundly denounced the theology of The Shack as “sub-biblical and dangerous” and called the evangelical embrace of it a “tragedy.” Mohler emphasized that “evangelicals have lost the art of biblical discernment,” a lamentable reality that “must be traced to a disastrous loss of biblical knowledge.”
But Burleson’s response, in his blog entry entitled “The Shack and Universal Reconciliation: Answers to The Charge of Heresy By Evangelical Christians,” does not address the continuing downgrade of biblical knowledge within the evangelical church, nor the glaring absence of any attempt at discernment which Mohler rightfully bemoaned.   Burleson’s response was an attempt to favorably close the gap between Young’s theology in The Shack and Mohler’s as a “five-point Calvinist.” Burleson points out that “I understand Dr. Mohler’s theology and happen to agree with it, though I prefer to call it ‘the doctrines of grace’ because I see these doctrines taught in Scripture.”
So Burleson, a confessed Calvinist, attempts to reconcile the glaring universalism of Young in The Shack with his own and Mohler’s theology. His intent is to dispute the charge of heresy brought against the fictitious work and paint it in an evangelically-favorable light.  It is worth noting that to buttress his defense of Young’s theology, Burleson turns to the likes of C.S. Lewis, George Macdonald, G.K. Chesterton, and the “Christian” Mark Twain.
(Lewis, you might note, drew the criticism of Reformed stalwart Martyn Lloyd-Jones who said, “C.S. Lewis had a defective view of salvation and was an opponent of the substitutionary and penal view of the atonement.”  For more on Lewis, go HERE.  So “C.S.” obviously doesn’t stand for  “Credible Source” drawn from the mainstream of orthodoxy.  As to Chesterton, his pithy witticisms do not negate his praise for Catholicism, writing that “The difficulty of explaining “why I am a Catholic” is that there are ten thousand reasons all amounting to one reason: that Catholicism is true.”  Another non-credible witness for Burleson’s defense of Young’s heresy.  MacDonald, a prolific author and poet, influenced Lewis, Chesterton, and Twain.  But MacDonald was, as Burleson notes, an avowed universalist.  As for Twain, who some would like to tout as a Christian – though he has long been a poster-boy for atheism – two quips of his seem to make him an equally undesirable defendant in Burleson’s apologetic for The Shack. See below.)
“If Christ were here now there is one thing he would not be – a Christian.”  Mark Twain
“I believe that the Old and New Testaments were imagined and written by man, and that no line in them was authorized by God, much less inspired by Him.”  Mark Twain
Effectively dismissing Young’s universalism as seriously problematic, Burleson’s argument is to minimize the charge of heresy down to the single issue of the extent of the atonement.  “For whom did Christ die?”  But the reduction of the theological problems with The Shack to this single point is deceptive.  There is more to The Shack‘s problems than Burleson addresses. (A resource from Justin Peters is provided below that addresses many of these issues.)  But, you can read his argument and determine for yourself whether Burleson’s attempt to evangelically anoint The Shack with the mantle of authentic, Biblical Christianity is valid. Perhaps, though, you’ll find his argument (not to mention his cadre of unorthodox co-defendants)  not merely ineffective in achieving this purpose, but serving as further evidence that validates Mohler’s claim of an increasingly discernment-free church suffering from a severe dearth of Biblical apprehension.
Burleson seems far more interested in extending an olive branch of culturally-approved tolerance to a work that is decidedly heretical- though heavily Christianized and emotions-generating – than he is to defending Christ’s sheep from Word-twisting wolves, regardless of how impressively, sheepishly dressed those wolves appear. And make no mistake, Young is a wolf.  And The Shack is not Christian.
The fundamental measure of whether something is authentically Christian is not the frequency of Bible verses that it cites. It is not the prevalence of Christian words and phrases that might permeate it.   Neither is sincerity of message a measure of Biblical authenticity, just as the exhibition of powerful emotions is no evidence for the activity of the Holy Spirit.  False teaching – heresy – does not come with a demonic warning label announcing itself. Rather, it comes elegantly attired as Christian, incorporating selectively chosen tidbits of truth and the vernacular of faith that are woven together into its overall deception. A measure of truth always accompanies the error, a condition which is fatal to truth itself. As Christ warned, “beware the leaven.”
A thing – like The Shack -may look Christian, sound Christian, and smell Christian, but a Christianized facade, even one that powerfully evokes emotive responses, does not make something Christian. The fundamental measure by which something is rightfully gauged “Christian” – be it a book, a movie, and perhaps especially, a church – is the crucial element that has become increasingly absent in the evangelical church – the authentic, Biblical Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Shack is devoid of the Gospel.  It is not Christian.
But not only is The Shack not Christian, it is not helpful to the Christian faith. We can be reminded by what may seem a silly point, but John, the apostle and gospel writer and Revelation writer, wrote these inspired Words as the opening to his Gospel, “In the beginning was the word.”   He did not write, “in the beginning was the movie, or the shack, or the whatever.” The Word is what was in the beginning, and it is the Word which He has progressively, and specially, revealed to humanity. That Word, of course, is Jesus, the Christ of the Gospel.   And that Gospel is the power of God to save (Romans 1:16) because that Gospel is the zenith of his redemptive revelation.
For a thing to be Christian and to start at some point other than the Gospel, to only continually avoid that Gospel, means that thing is not authentically Christian, nor is that thing capable of bringing Spirit-regeneration to a dead soul.  It is completely incapable of edifying Christ’s sheep in whom the Holy Spirit resides. Error does not come with God’s “look the other way” endorsement just because it contains a modicum of truth.  And, be sure of this …. God does not need a work of heresy, regardless of how seemingly “God-friendly” it may be, to generate conversational buzz about Him.  He will do his redemptive work as He always has, through the Gospel.
No doubt to capitalize on the current Shack craze, Young has recently released his newest work, Lies We Believe About God. (A review of this book is forthcoming.) The 28 chapters presume to refute erroneous evangelical beliefs about God, as well as to defend the theology he presented in The Shack.   But at the close of Lies, Young offers “A Catena” (“Catena” is Latin for “chain.”) intended to substantiate his unorthodox and, according to Mohler (and multitudes of others), heretical universalistic view:
“A catena, in this case, a chain of Scriptures (various translations based on the Greek New Testament) strung together as commentary on the theme of God’s saving work for all – the grand arc of God’s drama of redemption. When read aloud with a touch of gravitas, the momentum is powerful:” (Source: Lies We Believe About God, pg. 241)
A “touch of gravitas” or not (that suggestion alone expressly indicates that the evocation of positive emotional responses is more desirable than the apprehension of inherent truth), the 34 bullet-pointed Scriptural “commentary” references that Young weaves together represents the classic example of Scripturally caustic hermeneutics. No contextual consideration is given, but great emphasis is impressed upon the reader by each selection in which Young’s notion of universalism seems Scripturally supported.   His citations italicize words such as any, all, every, and world to imply that the verses demand, defend, and substantiate God’s salvation of every sinner.  He weaves these 34 plucked verses to produce a narrative that is pure universalism.
A few examples of Young’s italicized, non-contextual “thread” …
“This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, than through him all would believe.  (John 1:7)”
“Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.  (John 1:29)”
“We labor and strive for this, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of everyone, especially of those who believe. (1 Timothy 4:10)”
But the error of The Shack does not come only with an endorsement from SBC pastor Burleson. Other SBC’ers endorsed it, too. Their comments, coming from a pre-screening of the fictitious flick, are being used as endorsements on
We reported that 1000 Faith Leaders Endorsed The Shack. One of the many SBC churches and agencies represented was The Greater Orlando Baptist Association. A representative of this Florida Baptist group of over 250 SBC churches is named among the 1000 “faith leaders” who lauded the film.
According to the association’s website, Mark Weible is its Church Planting Director.  While The Shack clearly promotes universalism, this endorser seems particularly impressed by a presentation of what amounts to little more than a “therapeutic gospel,” not altogether unlike the word-faith, prosperity gospel.  Want to get rid of pain?  Get God.  It’s an equally invalid, unscriptural, and heretical presentation of God.
Another such endorsement comes from a Texas Southern Baptist.
Smith happens to be the Executive Director of the Austin Baptist Association. His comment – again, used as an endorsement – doesn’t denote the error with the film’s blasphemous depiction of the Trinity; he merely lauds it as “very creative.” Creativity, however, is neither a spiritual gift, nor a fruit of the Spirit, leaving his endorsing comment suggestive of the importance of something that is fundamentally unimportant when compared, say, to the “very” glaring lack of the Gospel in the film.
It is unclear whether Weible or Smith offered their laudatory comments with the approval of their respective organizations.  Burleson clearly promoted his on a website independent of his church’s site.  But what motivates Burleson that doesn’t apparently motivate the other two SBC’ers is his close friendship with Young.  In fact, back in 2009, so enthralled was Burleson with the book The Shack, it having been recommended to him by his mother, his sister, and his wife, that he invited Young to preach at his church, a move that evidently did not sit well with some (as it rightly should not have).
Burleson’s love of sinners argument is intoxicatingly unscriptural, though, when it comes to opening up the pulpit of Christ’s church to a pagan. While we all are born depraved sinners, the church is not a showcase for pagan philosophy, trotted out though Young’s is as Christian theology.  Though tares exist among the wheat, the pastor is, first and foremost, to feed the sheep, a task that cannot be done by fertilizing them with error.
Which takes us to the second quote at the beginning of this article, the one which warns authentic sheep to flee from any “church” and any “shepherd” that does not vigorously, “staunchly oppose the theology of The Shack.”  That comes from pastor and author Jim Osman.  He and Justin Peters viewed the movie and came away aghast that such a thing could remotely be considered Christian.
(Peters and Osman have produced 5 radio episodes about their visit to The Shack, exposing its heresies, for The Justin Peters Program.  I heartily encourage you to tune in.  If you are inclined, by the endorsements of pastors like Burleson or others, to see no problems with The Shack, please, “examine yourself to see if you are in the faith” (2 Corinthians 13:5) because the Holy Spirit always, always, ALWAYS leads TO the TRUTH (John 16:13) and AWAY from error.)
The beginning of the Christian life for every believer necessarily begins with the Gospel.  Nowhere else.  Despite the multitude of Jesuses proclaimed by the evangelical church today and portrayed in culture by some Hollywood flick or a publisher’s paperback novel, unless He is the Jesus of the Gospel of Scripture, it is the wrong – and unsaving – Jesus.  The universalism of The Shack intentionally demeans the real atoning work of the real Jesus on the Cross.
Know, embrace, and follow the genuine Jesus of the Biblical Gospel.  “Repent and believe in the Gospel.” (Mark 1:15)
But just know this … given the rapidly quickening pace of its downgrade, to find that saving Gospel and that Biblical Jesus, you might just need to start somewhere other than a Southern Baptist church …
Because, sadly enough, it’s remotely plausible to say that “you can’t get there from here.”



Albert Mohler Slums Up SBTS with Dope-Smoking, Profane Rapper



republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, and research purposes:
“It is with a single man that error usually commences; and when such a man has influence or position, it is impossible to estimate the evil that will attend it.” James P. Boyce

 “What are you thinking” doesn’t begin to sum up the concern. Is this a practical joke? Is the most respected man in all of Baptistdom (if not evangelicalism) really standing there with a recreationally pot-smoking, foul-mouthed, gutter-talking Sho Baraka? Really?
Sure enough.
Put on by Albert Mohler, Dan Dumas (Sr. Vice President at Southern Seminary) and Eric Geiger (Vice President of Lifeway), the Renown Conference is designed for Middle School an High School students and is hosted at SBTS, and it started today.
The Renown website posted Sho Baraka as the musical talent invited to entertain the students, and says in his bio, “[Baraka] desires to blend his artistic platform with his academic leanings to contribute a unique perspective in both arenas in hopes of raising the standard, thereby raising the culture.”
While that may sound ambitious, Baraka is best known as the filthy-mouthed performer who blends talks about Jesus with vulgarity. He has been making the news for his lewd speech (spoken and sung) since 2013 . You might give him a pass for singing the “N-Word” because of the color of his skin (if you’re an ethnic gnostic), but referring to his mother as the B-Word might be tougher to stomach. And it’s not just lyrics to his profane songs, but he regularly uses profanity on podcast interviews and in other venues. Most recently Lifeway (of which Eric Geiger, above, is Vice President) pulled his album to much protest among the “black community” (with tacit accusations of racial insensitivity, of course) because – according to Lifeway – profanity, as illustrated in the following lyrics:
The disco-rave type stage design of the SBTS youth conference, designed by Mohler, Dumas and Geiger.
The stately chapel building at SBTS was transformed into what appeared like a rock concert, complete with a dancing light show.
I was an insecure boy who just thought he was a genius
But always pissed off, that’s because I thought with my penis
It’s all strategic, I’m just asking us the reason
Share my faith on the track, I’m just exorcising demons
This is the very same Sho Baraka who endorsed the use of recreational marijuana, saying “there are some laws that are unjust, and almost need to be broken” (source link). The same link, should you care to click on it to research it yourself, will provide the audio of that conversation.
One also has to wonder why on Earth a respected seminary would invite someone like Baraka to influence children and youth. To add insult to injury, the theme of the Renown Conference was “Salt and Light,” and claims that the conference exists to “help middle school and high school students understand their purpose as Christians in serving as useful elements in the service of God.”
Being a profane pot-smoking pseudo-celebrity is hardly being salt and light. Adopting the culture’s vulgarities rather than shining forth the Gospel isn’t being light. There is a difference between winning the culture and being won by the culture. Sho Baraka is not the former.
At worst, Dr. Albert Mohler is seriously sliding into Downgrade and bringing the SBTS with him. At best, he’s guilty of the soft-bigotry of lowered expectations in order to achieve some semblance of cultural unity.

"Have you ever asked the question: What is the purpose of the Christian life? Jesus described this life in Matthew 5:13-16 as represented by two elements: Salt & Light.
Salt represents usefulness, healing, and the ability to change things for the better, while light speaks to prevailing over darkness as a shining beacon of truth for the gospel. But in the same passage Jesus warns that salt can become tasteless and light can be hidden. When these things happen, both elements are useless.
How can a Christian remain useful to Jesus Christ the king? Renown: Salt & Light is a conference designed to help middle school and high school students understand their purpose as Christians in serving as useful elements in the service of God. Join us as our speakers Albert Mohler, Dan Dumas and Eric Geiger help guide students toward the Scriptures in order to gain an understanding for their life’s highest calling; Bringing the light and changing power of the gospel to men and women in need of reconciliation to God."
 R. Albert Mohler Jr.


Sho Baraka

"Educated at Tuskegee University and the University of North Texas, Sho studied Television/Film, Anthropology, and Public Administration. He has become an artist, philosopher, and social-thought leader in contemporary culture. He has spent nine years traveling the world as a recording artist and public speaker. He has done numerous overseas activist work, ranging from race relations in South Africa to establishing musical cohorts in Indonesia. He is a founding member of nationally known Christian hip hop group 116 Clique. Sho Baraka is also the founder of Forth District.
He now desires to blend his artistic platform with his academic leanings to contribute a unique perspective in both arenas in hopes of raising the standard, thereby raising the culture. Sho currently lives in Atlanta, GA and co-leads a consulting network that is active in cultural renewal."
 Sho Baraka Responds To The Lifeway Decision 


republished below in full unedited for informational, educational, and research purposes:
“Freemasonry teaches that salvation may be attained by ‘good works’ and not through faith in Christ alone.”  The North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention
If you are a Christian you have probably asked this question to someone at least once in your life:
“If you died today, do you know if God would accept you into Heaven?”
Every Sunday, in churches all across the world, this is a question that preachers ask as they prepare to give a gospel invitation to their audience.  This same question is asked during the rest of the week as God’s people go throughout their cities to evangelize lost.  Faithful Christian evangelists communicate the answer to this question clearly – those who have not accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior will perish in Hell.  The correct answer to this question is easily supported by the Bible:
“Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, ‘Rulers and elders of the people, if we are on trial today for a benefit done to a sick man, as to how this man has been made well, let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by this name this man stands here before you in good health. He is the stone which was rejected by you, the builders, but which became the chief cornerstone. And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.’” Acts 4:8-12
“Thomas said to Him, ‘Lord, we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?’ Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; from now on you know Him, and have seen Him.’” John 14:5-7
“Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.” Revelation 20:14-15
This question is one of eternal consequence.  It is perhaps the most important question that can be asked.  The Christian answer to it is clear, but how do Freemasons answer this pivotal question?  The Masonic answer to this question is apparent from their official policies and funeral rights.
When any Master Mason dies, he is entitled to a Masonic burial.  Funeral rites are prescribed by Masonic handbooks and include readings, responses, and prayers.  Clearly, Masonic funeral rites (which are led by the “Worshipful Master” of an individual lodge) are religious services.  Yet, these services are not particular to any one religion.  A specific religious affiliation is not required to be a Freemason.  According to Cartersville Masonic Lodge 63 F&M[1] an absolute requirement for becoming a mason is to “have belief in a Supreme Being (of any faith. No particular religion or faith is required or excluded. All are welcome.)”  The Cartersville lodge claims that “Masonry is universal in its ideals.”
Any Master Mason is entitled to a Masonic funeral and Christian belief is not required to be a Freemason.  Thus, deceased non-Christian Freemasons can (and do) receive Masonic funeral services.  According to God’s word, non-Christians suffer for an eternity in Hell.  Yet, Masonic funeral rites do not indicate such, in fact, they indicate the opposite.
The funeral ceremony of the Mount Scopus Lodge A.F & A.M. includes the following language:
“My Brethren, the roll of the workmen has been called, and one Master Mason has not answered to his name. He has laid down the working tools of the Craft and with them he has left that mortal part for which he no longer has use. His labors here below have taught him to divest his heart and conscience of the vices and superfluities of life, thereby fitting his mind as a living stone for that spiritual building — that house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. Strengthened in his labors here by faith in God, and confident of expectation of immortality, he has sought admission to the Celestial Lodge above.”
Clearly, there is an expectation that the dead Freemason (whether or not he accepted the Lord Jesus as his Savior) will reach Heaven, or what the Freemasons call the “Celestial Lodge” of the “Great Architect of the Universe”.  Akin’s Lodge Manual, which was published by John W. Akin of Cartersville, GA, includes the following funerary language:
“Most glorious God, Author of all good and Giver of all mercy pour down thy blessings upon us…may we be induced so to regulate our conduct here that when the awful moment shall arrive that we are about to quit this transitory scene, the enlivening prospect of thy mercy may dispel the gloom of death; and after our departure hence in peace and in thy favor, may we be received into thine everlasting kingdom, and there enjoy, in union with the soul of our departed friends, the just rewards of a pious and virtuous life.  Amen!”
From a Christian worldview, this language is profoundly disturbing.  A dead non-Christian has no hope of receiving mercy from God.  He has no hope of being received into God’s kingdom.  His Christian friends will never again unite with him.  He is forever under the curse of sin, destined for Hell.  To make matters worse, the language of the funeral rite implies that getting to Heaven is the result of living a “pious and virtuous life.”  In other words, getting to Heaven is the result of living a good life and doing good works.  Scripture clearly and absolutely teaches that good works do not and cannot save.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9
The language of the Masonic funeral rite cannot be said or believed by a Christian in good conscience.  It is a lie.  It contradicts God’s word.  This lie is more insidious than the Christian friends of Masons might know.  Akin’s manual actually includes alternate funeral language which is to be read when a Masonic funeral service is held at a church.[2]  The language designed for readings in front of a body of Christians does not include the language which indicates that works save.  Thus, Christians may be unaware of the unbiblical practices of their fellow church members who participate in Freemasonry…because they have been hidden from them.
Freemasons have one answer to the question “If you died today, do you know if God would accept you into Heaven?” at church and another at their lodge.  They are double-minded men.  Scripture teaches that a “double-minded man is unstable in all his ways, like the surf of the sea and driven and tossed by the wind.”  Unchecked, such men are dangerous to the health of a church.  If there are Freemasons at your church, scripture makes your duty clear.  Members of this secret society must be dealt with according to biblical standards:
“Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not be partakers with them; for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord. Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret.” Ephesians 5:6-12
“Brethren, even if anyone is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, so that you too will not be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:1-2
As a Christian, it is your moral responsibility to call Freemasons to reject freemasonry in repentance.  If a Freemason refuses, thereby proving that his loyalty to his lodge is greater than his loyalty to Christ’s church, then he must be treated according to the prescription of 1 Corinthians 6:
“I wrote you in my letter not to associate with immoral people; I did not at all mean with the immoral people of this world, or with the covetous and swindlers, or with idolaters, for then you would have to go out of the world. 11 But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler—not even to eat with such a one. For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within the church? But those who are outside, God judges. Remove the wicked man from among yourselves.” 1 Corinthians 5:9-13
This will not be easy…but then again taking up cross and following Jesus is not supposed to be.  The most loving thing to do is call sinners to repentance.  The most Holy thing to do is to remove the wicked from the body.  Like the Israelites who suffered from the secret sin of Achan, the work of the local church will be hindered by the secret sins of its Masonic members.  The more Freemasons that infiltrate a church, the greater influence they have.  Freemasonry is not harmless.  It has temporal and eternal consequences.  It literally teaches a different, works-based gospel than the faith-based gospel taught in the Bible.
“But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!” Galatians 1:8
Because church membership is so prevalent among Freemasons, potential pastors should inform church pulpit committees that they will not countenance Freemasonry under their shepherding.  Church members should support their pastors and fellow church members who insist on exercising Biblical fidelity and church discipline in regards to Freemasonry.
After reading this you may be saying to yourself, “There have been Freemasons in my church for years.  They seem like good men.  I’ve never heard any of this before.  I didn’t know any of this.”
Well…you know it now.  Faithfulness to Christ is paramount.
“Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin.” James 4:17
Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.  Let all that you do be done in love.” 1 Corinthians 16:13-14
For an additional, first-hand resource on Masonic funeral rites, see the video below from Chrisitan Apologist John Ankerberg of Chattanooga, TN:

*I have resided in Cartersville, Georgia since 1996.  I write to you from the very town where Akin’s manual was written and is practiced.  This is a small town.  Pray for me that the Lord will protect me from any persecution that comes as a result of my taking of this biblical stand against an influential group.  If you need any help with this issue, please don’t hesitate to contact me.  If you are a Freemason, I adjure you to abandon the craft.
**Please note that the preceding is my personal opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend, or the educational institution at which I am enrolled. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.
[1] “F&M” refers to “Free and Accepted” masonry.  It is the mainstream form of masonry.  Free and Accepted lodges operate under the jurisdiction of Grand Lodges.  Cartersville #63 operates under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Georgia.
[2] Many pastors do not allow Masonic funeral rites to be held in their church buildings.  Many of these same pastors, however, do not initiate church discipline on Masons.  This action is contradictory.  If a Mason can be a member in good standing, why can he not have a Masonic funeral in a church?