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  #1  
Old Mar 4, '09, 2:12 pm
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JAGCath28 JAGCath28 is offline
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Default Shepherd's Chapel

Has anyone ever studied (or heard of) Shepherd's Chapel located in AR under the direction of Pastor Arnold Murray? I only ask, because growing up, once we no longer went to the Methodist and Church of Christ churches, my dad found Pastor Arnold Murray on cable. I spent about 6 or more years studying with this church over the television and through audio tapes (mostly because of my dad). Since then, I've become Catholic. Pastor Murray is the only person that my dad will listen to when it comes to studying scripture, and his views are very different. I was curious if anyone else has had any experiences with this church and what your thoughts are.

God Bless,

Jessica
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  #2  
Old Mar 4, '09, 10:52 pm
Patrick1982 Patrick1982 is offline
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

He is a nut. He definitely teaches the heresy of 'modalism', that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are not three Persons in one God, but three different "offices" of God, as he puts it. I grew up Roman Catholic, fell away from the faith from the ages of 13- 18 or so. I remember his show used to be on TV at 5 AM and as I had a hard time falling asleep before the sun came up at that time I used to watch it. He doesn't teach "Once saved always saved", but confession to God alone. He does include pseudo-scholarship into the mix as per his understanding of scripture and definitely believes that the earth is 6,000 years old and that he has a cast of the footprint of an Angel(some fossil footprint). He teaches about quasi-sacramentals such as annointing oil that you do up yourself by asking God to bless the oil as the "oil of our people". As I remember he doesn't believe in the physical resurrection of the dead, but I could be wrong. I know he once threatened a man with a gun for interrupting one of his sermons with shouts of "blasphemy!". He teaches that no race is superior to another but that God is against 'race mixing', since He created the races the way he wanted them to be. I never once heard him mention the Eucharist- ever.

He is definitely a fringe nut and uber-heretic, but I guess the one good quality in what he teaches is continual repentance for sins, which I suppose if one is going to be a fringe nut is some sort of step in the right direction. If it's any consolation I watched the guy for two years, which eventually got me interested in reading the scriptures, and against all odds I developed an interest in praying the rosary before the influence of a girl I dated finally brought me back to the Catholic Church. I have since been lead to the Orthodox Church, which I believe contains the fullness of the truth, but my point is that at least one person has gone from watching that guy and come back to Apostolic Christianity by the Grace of God.
  #3  
Old Mar 5, '09, 3:55 am
GKC GKC is offline
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick1982 View Post
He is a nut. He definitely teaches the heresy of 'modalism', that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are not three Persons in one God, but three different "offices" of God, as he puts it. I grew up Roman Catholic, fell away from the faith from the ages of 13- 18 or so. I remember his show used to be on TV at 5 AM and as I had a hard time falling asleep before the sun came up at that time I used to watch it. He doesn't teach "Once saved always saved", but confession to God alone. He does include pseudo-scholarship into the mix as per his understanding of scripture and definitely believes that the earth is 6,000 years old and that he has a cast of the footprint of an Angel(some fossil footprint). He teaches about quasi-sacramentals such as annointing oil that you do up yourself by asking God to bless the oil as the "oil of our people". As I remember he doesn't believe in the physical resurrection of the dead, but I could be wrong. I know he once threatened a man with a gun for interrupting one of his sermons with shouts of "blasphemy!". He teaches that no race is superior to another but that God is against 'race mixing', since He created the races the way he wanted them to be. I never once heard him mention the Eucharist- ever.

He is definitely a fringe nut and uber-heretic, but I guess the one good quality in what he teaches is continual repentance for sins, which I suppose if one is going to be a fringe nut is some sort of step in the right direction. If it's any consolation I watched the guy for two years, which eventually got me interested in reading the scriptures, and against all odds I developed an interest in praying the rosary before the influence of a girl I dated finally brought me back to the Catholic Church. I have since been lead to the Orthodox Church, which I believe contains the fullness of the truth, but my point is that at least one person has gone from watching that guy and come back to Apostolic Christianity by the Grace of God.

He also has this thing about Eve and the snake, in the garden.

GKC
  #4  
Old Mar 5, '09, 8:47 am
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick1982 View Post
He is a nut. He definitely teaches the heresy of 'modalism', that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are not three Persons in one God, but three different "offices" of God, as he puts it. I grew up Roman Catholic, fell away from the faith from the ages of 13- 18 or so. I remember his show used to be on TV at 5 AM and as I had a hard time falling asleep before the sun came up at that time I used to watch it. He doesn't teach "Once saved always saved", but confession to God alone. He does include pseudo-scholarship into the mix as per his understanding of scripture and definitely believes that the earth is 6,000 years old and that he has a cast of the footprint of an Angel(some fossil footprint). He teaches about quasi-sacramentals such as annointing oil that you do up yourself by asking God to bless the oil as the "oil of our people". As I remember he doesn't believe in the physical resurrection of the dead, but I could be wrong. I know he once threatened a man with a gun for interrupting one of his sermons with shouts of "blasphemy!". He teaches that no race is superior to another but that God is against 'race mixing', since He created the races the way he wanted them to be. I never once heard him mention the Eucharist- ever.

He is definitely a fringe nut and uber-heretic, but I guess the one good quality in what he teaches is continual repentance for sins, which I suppose if one is going to be a fringe nut is some sort of step in the right direction. If it's any consolation I watched the guy for two years, which eventually got me interested in reading the scriptures, and against all odds I developed an interest in praying the rosary before the influence of a girl I dated finally brought me back to the Catholic Church. I have since been lead to the Orthodox Church, which I believe contains the fullness of the truth, but my point is that at least one person has gone from watching that guy and come back to Apostolic Christianity by the Grace of God.
From what I remember, he taught 3 earth ages. One prior to the now, the now, and the one to come. I don't remember him teaching the 6,000 years old thing because he definitely believes in dinasours and stuff which I think falls into the earth ages. I've gone to their "Passover" celebrations as well as their "Fall Fellowships". When you first get into it, it is like your mind has been opened for the first time (at least it was for me when I was in high school). My dad had him on 24 hours a day even when we slept. Talk about repetitive. We changed our whole lifestyle. Stopped eating pork and unclean seafood. My dad considered Easter an evil word and would only let us say Passover. We stopped going to any kind of church institution, and therefore relied solely on our own (my dad's) interpretation or Pastor Murray's. It then got to a point where my Dad "knows" more than Pastor Murray. I went away to college and so the hold that this had over my life was no longer there. I was able to formulate my own opinions which eventually led me to the Catholic church.

One major thing for me is the traditions of men that Pastor Murray went on and on about. I agreed with him at first mostly because there were traditions in my Bible classes in the Baptist high school that I went to that I didn't agree with. However, I felt it was important to really learn the history of our Christian faith. That's what led me to embracing Catholocism. The Catholic Church was the first church. Easter has been celebrated as easter for just under 2000 years. How could God let us get it so wrong if we were indeed wrong? Anyway, I appreciate your story about this. I would be curious to find out if anyone else was ever sucked in to Shepherd's Chapel and then left.

I'm in no way wanting to give the impression that I am being disrespectful to him, his teachings, or those who follow them. It's just that in my family, my dad is an extremist and therefore, I've seen where this can lead if you aren't careful. It is scary. I want my dad to come back to the truth. I see nothing wrong with studying the Bible. I encourage it, but when you aren't fellowshipping with other Christians or partaking of the Eucharist or being accountable to anyone except for you and your idea of God....it is really sad.
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  #5  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:03 am
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

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Originally Posted by GKC View Post
He also has this thing about Eve and the snake, in the garden.

GKC
Yes. He says that the snake is Satan (which we all know this), but he says that the snake is literally Satan as in not a snake, but Satan. And that Eve, Satan, and Adam "knew" each other which caused Eve to have twins: Cain and Abel, Cain being from Satan and Abel being from Adam.

He gets this from using the Companion Study Bible with the notes from Bullinger that were compiled sometime between 1837-1913. This interpretation is in the side notes prepared by Bullinger of Genesis Chapter 3 and 4.
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  #6  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:04 am
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

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Originally Posted by JAGCath28 View Post
Yes. He says that the snake is Satan (which we all know this), but he says that the snake is literally Satan as in not a snake, but Satan. And that Eve, Satan, and Adam "knew" each other which caused Eve to have twins: Cain and Abel, Cain being from Satan and Abel being from Adam.

He gets this from using the Companion Study Bible with the notes from Bullinger that were compiled sometime between 1837-1913. This interpretation is in the side notes prepared by Bullinger of Genesis Chapter 3 and 4.
And Cain's descendants being, roughly, all who do not agree with him. Serpent Seed, Kenites.

GKC
  #7  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:54 am
firstmode firstmode is offline
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

What is the Shepherd's Chapel?

Shepherd's Chapel is an independent Church in Gravette, Ark, which is the product of the gentleman by the name of Arnold Murray. Arnold Murray is an avid Bible teacher with a radio and television ministry found on over 200 TV stations. However, what Arnold Murray teaches in many areas of theology is his own brand of Christianity. In fact, it is not Christian at all in at least one very important essential; he denies the doctrine of the Trinity. This is a serious error for him as it is a denial of the true and living God. Murray teaches the heresy known as modalism, that God is one person who takes three forms: the Father who became the Son who became the Holy Spirit. Also, the Shepherd's Chapel teaches what is called the Christian Identity movement. This is the belief that the British and, therefore, the Americans and Canadians, are the true descendants of the ancient Israelites the 10 lost tribes. This later doctrine is very often used to by militia groups support racist ideologies. It is no surprise, therefore, to find that the Shepherd's Chapel s against interracial marriages. I am not here saying that the Shepherd's Chapel teaches racism, but their denial of interracial marriage is unbiblical.

Mr. Murray goes through the Bible verse by verse adding his own interpretations and using the Strong's concordance to support his position. Those who do not understand God's word, and those who have very little biblical training are easily swayed by the pseudo logic and Greek word explanations Murray uses to support his positions.

One comment that is very revealing is that the people who follow Murray are very often just as rude and condescending as he is. They, like their teacher, regularly call others liars, deceivers, idiots, losers, etc. Murray is full of quick, condescending remarks about anyone who disagrees with him. Unfortunately, it is rubbing off on his followers and this is particularly troublesome since there is a recording of him pulling a gun on someone who disagreed with him in a teaching setting.

I would like to add that obtaining specific information from Shepard's Chapel is very difficult. I have gleaned as much as I could from their website, from reading other web sites about Shepherd's Chapel, and from going over the newsletters from Arnold Murray. The statement of faith on their web site is not very descriptive and I think it is this way on purpose.

A list of the Shepherds Chapel teachings is most revealing. I strongly recommend that Christians and non-Christians alike stay away from this pseudo-Christian group.
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  #8  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:55 am
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

Who is Arnold Murray?

Arnold Murray is the "pastor" of a church called the Shepherd's Chapel out of Gravette, Ark, with over 200 television stations carrying his ministry. Mr. Murray presents himself as a Christian scholar, calls himself "Dr.", and says he is a an ex-marine who served in the Korean war where he was wounded. Unfortunately, proof of his doctorate degree is not available. He also refuses to provide any documentation regarding his scholastic achievements. In fact, getting any information on Mr. Murray is very difficult. He is rather private about his personal history and has refused to provide any biographical information about himself. What we learn of Mr. Murray is what he tells us on his television show and his website. Also, it is immaterial whether or not Mr. Murray has a doctorate. He does not need one to be an adequate teacher. But since he refers to himself as "Dr.", it would be nice to know from what institution he received his credentials.

Mr. Murray stated that when he was young he attended many different churches and that he has incorporated some of the teachings of these different churches into his current theology. Again, these different churches are not mentioned. I would be very curious to know which ones they were, especially if some of them were non-Christian cults.

Mr. Murray, or Pastor Murray, as his followers call him, teaches a brand of Christianity with many problems. Mr. Murray denies the doctrine of the Trinity, denies the existence of hell and the rapture, and states that Eve had sexual relations with the devil.

When watching his television show it becomes quickly evident that he is a bit condescending to those whom he claims are misled, something that seems to have rubbed off on his followers. He justifies this approach by stating that he was in the Marines and learned how to "teach his troops" with discipline. It seems his approach is lacking the humility and grace of the Holy Spirit which is demonstrated in this brief audio clip where Murray threatens someone with a 9mm handgun. In addition, it seems that he has made a false prophecy as is documented by the Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance, a secular religious analysis organization.

Mr. Arnold Murray also frequently refers to the Christian identity movement which teaches that the British and, therefore, the Americans and Canadians, are the true descendants of the ancient Israelites the 10 lost tribes. Jews in Israel are really descended from Cain who was the result of sexual intercourse between Eve and Satan. Murray also teaches that all people had a pre-existence in spirit-bodies before they were born here on earth.

Mr. Murray supports his off-base theological positions by interpreting verses in light of his pre-conceived ideas, sometimes stripping biblical verses of their context. He also selectively appeals to the Strong's concordance, cites what Greek and Hebrew words mean, and weaves his theological positions into the text. In reality, all he has done is justify his ideas through his unsound interpretive techniques.

The fact that Mr. Murray deviates from orthodoxy in some significant areas (i.e., trinity), that he is cryptic about his qualifications and experience, that he is often rudely condemning of those who do not agree with him, and that he has non-biblically based teachings are all signs of a false teacher. I recommend that you stay far away from this man and the Shepherd's Chapel.
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1 Cor. 14.39 - Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.

1 Thes 5:19-21 - Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.

  #9  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:55 am
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

What does the Shepherd's Chapel teach?

The Shepherd's Chapel is, at the very least, a controversial church with many unorthodox doctrines. The following list of teachings from the Shepherd's Chapel is derived from scouring the Internet, chat rooms, bulletin boards, asking the followers of Arnold Murray, and looking at the Shepherd's Chapel web site.

Even though the Shepherd's Chapel is considered to be a non-Christian cult by many people, it is left to be fully determined whether or not it is.

Unorthodox

1. Denies the Trinity and teaches that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are really three offices held by the one God.
2. Denies the existence of eternal Hell.
3. Denies the doctrine of the rapture.
4. Denies physical resurrection of believers. We will be raised spiritually.
5. Teaches annihilationism: non-existence after death for sinners.
6. Teaches that certain Old Testament kosher laws regarding meat should be followed.
7. Teaches Serpent Seed doctrine: Eve had literal sexual relations with the serpent.
8. The offspring of Eve's impregnation resulted in Cain, Satan's offspring.
9. The Kenites are the tares of the parable of the wheat and the tares in Matt. 13.
10. Satan's fallen angels impregnated women around the time of Noah.
11. Interracial marriage is wrong.
12. Being born again is to enter into this body from a spiritual body of another age.
13. America and Britain are the lost tribes of Israel.
14. People were alive in a pre-existence.
15. There was an earth age prior to Adam where a race of people lived.
16. The Rapture is a false doctrine.

Orthodox

1. Satan is a literal being.
2. Jesus will return.
3. Jesus will set up a future millennial kingdom.
4. The Bible is the inerrant word of God.

Other

1. The earth is millions of years old.
2. Arnold Murray is one of God's true teachers on earth today.
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1 Cor. 14.39 - Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.

1 Thes 5:19-21 - Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.

  #10  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:56 am
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

Is Shepherd's Chapel Christian?

In order to ascertain whether or not something is Christian, we must first understand what makes something Christian in the first place. Throughout history, the Christian Church has gleaned from God's word those essential doctrines that if denied, place the person outside the camp of Christ.

Following are three of the essential doctrines declared by Scripture as being necessary. In other words, to deny any of these is to deny the heart of Christianity and be outside the camp of Christ.

1. The Deity of Christ
1. Jesus is God in flesh (John 8:58 with Exodus 3:14). See also John 1:1,14; 8:24; 10:30-33.
1. 1 John 4:2-3: "This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world."
1. The above verse needs to be cross referenced with John 1:1,14 (also written by John) where he states that the Word was God and the Word became flesh.
2. 1 John 4:2-3 is saying that if you deny that Jesus is God in flesh then you are of the spirit of Antichrist.
2. Salvation by Grace
1. "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith -- and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God -- not by works, so that no one can boast," (Eph. 2:8-9, NIV).
1. "You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace," (Gal. 5:4).
3. The Resurrection of Christ
1. "And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith," (1 Cor. 15:14). "And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins," (1 Cor. 15:17).
2. To deny the physical resurrection is to deny Jesus' work, sacrifice, and our resurrection.

There are other doctrines such as the doctrine of the Trinity, the Virgin birth, etc., are derivatively necessary. But these are the ones in the scripture that are declared, by the Bible, as being essential. The derivative doctrines like the Trinity are orthodox and accurate teachings from the Bible.
Correction as of 12/8/2003

I had previously written that Murray denied the physical resurrection of Christ. This page originally contained the following two paragraphs:

"The most important doctrinal issue that the Shepherd's Chapel deviates on is the physical resurrection of Jesus. The shepherds Chapel teaches that Jesus rose in a spirit body, not the same physical body that he died in. Because of this, the Shepherd's Chapel is not Christian.

"Note: I have received conflicting information on this issue of Jesus' resurrection in regard to the Shepherd's Chapel. Therefore, I will revise this paper if I discover that the Shepherd's Chapel affirms Christ's physical resurrection. However, the fact that I have discovered conflicting information on this issue is very problematic. The Shepherd's Chapel should be very clear on the issue of the resurrection since it is a vital Christian doctrine. Its statement of faith says that Jesus rose from the dead, but does not tell us what it means by that statement."

Via an email, I have been pointed to an audio clip of Mr. Murray speaking on Christ's resurrection. It is found at http://khyron_4.tripod.com/PMurray/Resurrection.html. I transcribed the clip of Mr. Murray speaking to the best of my ability. It is as follows:

"Much like I, I gave you an example of when we came by the resurrection in chapter two of this great book. There's some idiot on the net, O how I dislike the Net, claims that I teach that Christ wasn't bodily resurrected. Never in my life have I said such a thing. Don't worry, the students will take care of him. They know he is a liar and a gossiper, because he does not speak truth."

I am happy to hear from Murray that he denies teaching that "Christ wasn't bodily resurrected." I would love to hear him teach that Jesus rose from the dead in the same body He died in, but perhaps I am too hopeful. Nevertheless, it seems that Murray is not denying the physical resurrection of Christ.

I would like to point out the rather insulting manner and tone that Mr. Murray conveys in his "teaching." It is unfortunate that so many of his followers have the same tone. Please not how he accuses the person on the net (whoever that is) of being a liar. The problem is that a person can be mistaken about a point and not be lying. To lie is to willingly mislead. Is Murray then stating that this person is purposely being deceptive? Such an accusation should not be made by a person who is motivated and guided by the Lord Jesus. I, for one, have never purposely misrepresented anyone on my site. Nevertheless, Murray would do well to memorize 1 Tim. 1:5,

"But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith."

Shepherd's Chapel denies the Trinity

The next problematic issue with this church is its denial of the Trinity. The Bible teaches that there is one God in three persons: Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Shepherd's Chapel teaches modalism, the idea that God is one person who took different forms or modes. The Christian church long condemned modalism as contrary to sound biblical theology.

The Shepherd's Chapel is at best a very aberrant Christian church and at worst, a cult. Is denial of the Trinity enough to make a group non-Christian? Yes it is. If Murray continues to deny the Trinity, that God is three distinct persons -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, then this would cast great doubt upon Murray as a proper Bible teacher.

Modalism has been condemned by the Christian church as heresy.
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1 Cor. 14.39 - Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.

1 Thes 5:19-21 - Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.

  #11  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:56 am
firstmode firstmode is offline
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

Did we exist as souls prior to Adam's creation?

One of the several false doctrines of the Shepherd's Chapel is the teaching that all people had an existence prior to being here on earth in what is called the first earth age. According to Shepherd's Chapel, there are three earth ages:

* First: Beginning of all things up to fall of Satan. This fall caused incredible destruction and waste. We preexisted the earthly existence in soul bodies. Those preexistent ones who rebelled against Lucifer and sided with God are called the elect. Gen. 1:1.
* Second: After the fall of Satan, God had to remake the world. It consists of Gen.1:2 through Revelation where all the world, except the elect, will accept the antichrist.
* Third: Begins with the establishment of the millennium, proceeds through its end, and extends into eternity. During the millennium, the elect are in spirit bodies, not physical ones.

These "ages" are based, in part, on what is called the Gap Theory. The Gap Theory states that between Gen. 1:1 and 1:2 was a huge gap of time. The theory states that there was a great destruction in verse one and a great rebuilding in verse two. This gap is also claimed to encompass the geologic epochs in which the dinosaurs lived.

The Shepherd's Chapel teaches that we were created in the first earth age, a time before the fall, where we existed in the form of soul bodies. The problem with this is that there is no biblical support for this position. In fact, the Bible contradicts this soul-body idea.

"it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. 45So also it is written, "The first man, Adam, became a living soul." The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. 46However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural; then the spiritual. 47The first man is from the earth, earthy; the second man is from heaven," (1 Cor. 15:44-47).

Paul is teaching here that the first "body" we have is the natural, or the physical body. After that comes the spiritual body which is a resurrected body. Paul is telling us about our existence, about our bodies, and about the order of their existence. Clearly, the teaching that we had soul-bodies prior to this life is wrong. The Shepherd's Chapel position is simply not biblical.
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1 Cor. 14.39 - Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.

1 Thes 5:19-21 - Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.

  #12  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:57 am
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

The serpent seed and the Kenites

snakeTwo additional distinguishing and erroneous doctrines of the Shepherd's Chapel are known as the Serpent Seed doctrine and the Kenite doctrine. These are intimately related. The Serpent Seed doctrine is the teaching that in the Garden of Eden, the serpent (the devil) had sexual relations with Eve. The result was that she bore Cain. The descendents of Cain are called Kenites. Abel, however, is the result of Adam and Eve having relations.

Arnold Murray, the pastor of the Shepherd's Chapel, is the primary advocate of these doctrines which he adamantly teaches and which his followers have adopted as biblical truth. Mr. Murray states,

When you look for the in-depth meaning of "men as trees, walking", you are able to see that Christ wants us to understand there are plantings of God and plantings of the devil. The plantings of that wicked one began in the garden of Eden with the conception of Cain and follow down through his progeny, the Kenites. (Newsletter #195, Jan 1995. See also, #202, August 1995).

The Kenites, according to Mr. Murray, must be exposed. "We must continue to teach who the Kenites are," says Mr. Murray, (Newsletter #190, August 1994). He states that the Kenites survived the flood (he denies the global flood) and are found in the lineage of Israel, not Judah, (Newsletter #179, Sept. 1993). Eventually, the Kenites permeated the nation of Israel and are the ones who shouted "Crucify Him," in reference to Jesus, (Newsletter #179, Sept. 1993).

In an attempt at biblical support, on his website at Answers to Critics, Mr. Murray states:

In Gen. 3:15 God is speaking to the serpent, "and I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shall bruise his heel."

Mr. Murray infers that when God says "thy seed" to Satan, He is referring to the Kenites, the descendents of Cain which were literally produced through the literal "seed" of Satan.

Of course, I disagree with Mr. Murray in his analysis. We do not really know exactly what form Satan was in the Garden, though I will submit to God's word and affirm it was a snake of some sort. The word "serpent" is "nachash" and means serpent or snake. If we take the word literally and it means snake, then Mr. Murray would be forced to explain how a literal snake could have sexual intercourse with Eve. If Mr. Murray were to acknowledge the potential of a figurative usage of the term here, then he needs to explain why the term "serpent" would be figurative and the term "seed" would be literal. Furthermore, if the serpent were Satan in a different form, and Eve spoke to the serpent, then did Eve have sex with a snake or with a different form of the snake; that is, did the snake change into another more apropos form to consummate his deception? If so, wouldn't Eve have been suspicious of a talking snake that changes form into something else with which she then agrees to sexual intercourse? As you can see, the issue, from Mr. Murray's perspective, is wrought with problems -- none of which he has answered.
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1 Cor. 14.39 - Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.

1 Thes 5:19-21 - Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.

  #13  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:57 am
firstmode firstmode is offline
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

Nevertheless, his entire position is easily refuted when we examine Gen. 4:1: "Now the man had relations with his wife Eve, and she conceived and gave birth to Cain, and she said, "I have gotten a manchild with the help of the Lord." We can see that the Bible clearly tells us who the Father of Cain is: Adam. The Serpent Seed idea is proven wrong.

In addition, I believe that it is more natural to attribute the term "seed" in Gen. 3:15 as a reference to the spiritual decedents of Satan, not his literal ones. We can see that being a true spiritual descendent is by faith, not by biology.

* "For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: 29But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God," (Rom. 2:28-29).
* "For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God," (Rom. 8:14).
* "The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with Him," (Rom. 8:16).
* "That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants," (Rom. 9:8).

Clearly, being a descendent has a spiritual quality. Likewise, Satan's descendents are those who identify with him in his lies. This is why Jesus said in John 8:44 to the Pharisees, "You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature; for he is a liar, and the father of lies."

In addition, "seed" is also referred to as the word of God (Matt. 13:18-23; Luke 8:11; 1 Pet. 1:23) and as the spiritual life in (1 John 3:9). The whole flavor of spiritual identification with God is included in terms of being the offspring of God (Gal. 3:29; Acts 17:28) and the children of God (Rom. 8:16-17). Consider 1 John 3:9 which says, "No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God." Obviously, the Christian does not contain the literal seed of God in him. Seed here, must refer to a spiritual element of indwelling, of ideology, and of faith. The Christian does not practice sin. It is against his beliefs and confession. Therefore, God's seed abides in the Christian, but it isn't literal seed as a descendent through procreation, but through spiritual identification.
Us against Them

The Serpent Seed doctrine is an unscriptural and unfortunate teaching. From it is derived an "us against them" mentality in which anyone who disagrees with Mr. Murray can easily be accused of being a Kenite. This is obvious in some of his quotes:

* "How many today are teaching from a quarterly written by a Kenite, rather than teaching from God's Word? (Newsletter #193, Nov. 1994).
* How can we sum this up? If you are doing God's will, don't worry about criticism from others. "Well, Pastor Murray they say we are a cult." Who cares what they say? God is on our side. Victory is a certainty. Does it ever seem like the enemy is winning? Anytime you get to feeling this way, turn to Psalms 9. This Psalm tells us what we should be earnestly expecting. Keep the meaning of "apokaradokia" in mind as we read this Psalm. (Newsletter #229 - November 1997).

Of course, if you study with him you are not being deceived, but if you are studying elsewhere, you're studying with a Kenite or siding with the enemy. Such are the machinations of this leader who teaches false doctrines.

Please be very wary of the Shepherd's Chapel.
__________________
1 Cor. 14.39 - Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.

1 Thes 5:19-21 - Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.

  #14  
Old Mar 5, '09, 9:57 am
firstmode firstmode is offline
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

Shepherd's Chapel and the rapture

The Shepherd's Chapel denies the doctrine of the rapture which is the teaching that upon the future return of Christ those Christians who are alive will be "caught up" to meet the Lord in the air. The word rapture is derived from the Latin "rapio" which means "to seize," "to snatch." The primary verses used to support this doctrine are found in 1 Thess. 4:16. "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." At the time of the rapture all Christians will be transformed bodily. According to 1 Cor. 15:51-52, "Behold, I tell you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed."

There are three main theories to deal with when the rapture will occur in relation to the seven year tribulation period. They are known as pre-tribulation, mid-tribulation, and post-tribulation. In short, the difference between them is in respect to when the rapture will take place. Will it occur before the tribulation, at the midpoint of the tribulation, or at the end of the tribulation?

Mr. Murray, in an attempt to support his erring doctrine, teaches that the word "clouds" in 1 Thessalonians is not referring to clouds in the sky but a gathering of people of like mind, a collection of witnesses who know the truth. Such interpretations are not consistent with the 1 Thess. passage.

Accepting or denying the teaching of the rapture does not affect one's salvation. It is a doctrine that can be believed or not without any affect upon a person's position in Christ. Unfortunately, the Shepherd's Chapel teaching is rather harsh regarding the rapture. Mr. Murray, the pastor of the Shepherd's Chapel, states that the rapture is a false doctrine (Newsletter #193 - Nov, 1994) and that many who believe in the rapture will be deceived into worshiping the Antichrist (Newsletter #205, Nov. 1995). At one point Mr. Murray stated that 95 percent of the churches that teach the rapture will accept the antichrist as the savior (Newsletter #116, June 1988). Such statements are simply not sustainable from a biblical perspective. Nevertheless, please consider some more quotes from Mr. Murray regarding the rapture:

1. Teachers of the rapture are dangerous.
1. "The false prophets promise salvation cheaply. ... They say, 'All you have to do is believe and then wait to be raptured out of here'. These are dangerous teachers, friends." (Newsletter #193 - Nov. 1994).
2. Preachers have twisted the truth regarding the rapture.
1. "Christ taught in their streets, but they weren't listening. You can hear it unto this day from the very pulpits that should be teaching truth. They have twisted the truth into teaching the rapture, the Easter bunny and the apple Eve ate in the garden of Eden. These false teachings make those that accept this doctrine easy marks for Satan's bondage." (Newsletter #230 - Dec. 1997).
3. False prophets teach the rapture.
1. The false prophets utilize the rapture as a security blanket. Placing words in God's mouth is very dangerous. Believing those words is also dangerous. Think for yourself. Believe only what God has said in the letter He wrote to you. (Newsletter #245 - March 1999, Men Say and God Says)
4. The Rapture doctrine is from Satan.
1. Yet, today we have false teachers leading people to Satan's doctrine of rapture from the very pulpits from which they should be hearing the doctrine of Jesus Christ. It is very appropriate that judgment begins at the pulpits. (Newsletter #253 - Nov. 1999).
5. The Rapture is not in God's word but is from seducing spirits.
1. The rapture is not in God's Word. God is against those seducing spirits who would teach His children to fly to save their souls. In conclusion, let's go to the Book of Mark. The disciples asked Jesus what it would be like when He returns at the second advent. Jesus gave us seven events that must transpire before His return. (Newsletter #262 - Aug. 2000)
6. There will be no rapture.
1. There will be no rapture; however, if you believe the rapture theory, Satan might use this fact to deceive you. The false prophets promise salvation cheaply. ... They say, "All you have to do is believe and then wait to be raptured out of here". These are dangerous teachers, friends. (Newsletter #193 - November 1994, Prepare to Meet Your God)

As you can see, Mr. Murray adamantly denies the doctrine of the rapture and states that those who believe in it are greatly deceived since it is a doctrine of Satan. In reality, it is Mr. Murray who is deceived. He is perfectly free to deny the rapture doctrine; it isn't an essential teaching of the Bible. But, his condemnation of those who believe in it goes well beyond the admonitions of Rom. 14:5 which says, "...Let each man be fully convinced in his own mind."
__________________
1 Cor. 14.39 - Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.

1 Thes 5:19-21 - Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.

  #15  
Old Mar 5, '09, 10:08 am
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JAGCath28 JAGCath28 is offline
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Default Re: Shepherd's Chapel

firstmode,

Is this all from your research? What got you interested in researching Shepherd's Chapel?
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