Why I Support Jim Bakker

Jim I first want to thank you for sharing the supernatural photos from heritage USA, the last time I was there at Morningside talking about On the Path of the Immortals. Even though I am S. Baptist, (and I know they gave you a hard time in the media.) I am sure you know at least some of them genuinely wanted to protect the church from a percieved scandal. Before, I was a believer, I used to use Jim Bakker as a reason Christians were all hypocrites. But I had never read the Bible and I honestly didn’t want too. So I was worse than a hypocrite anyhow.  Then I met real Christians, not legalists, the kind of people who confessed their own sin and they told me unexpected things like  “If you’re not a hypocrite, your standards are probably far too low. Why not visit our church we always have room for another one!” Although we strive not to judge others hypocritically, we are all hypocrites according to scripture:

For what I am doing I do not understand, because what I want to do, this I do not practice, but what I hate, this I do.(Romans 7:15)

That very same Paul taught the purpose of the law was to gain knowledge of sin, no one other than Jesus was able to keep it perfectly.

For by the works of the law no person will be declared righteous before him, for through the law comes knowledge of sin.: (Romans 3:20)

Paul also taught:

“The righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. For there is no distinction,(Romans 3:22)

James was a little more harsh:

“Come now, you rich people, weep and cry aloud over the miseries that are coming upon you! Your wealth has rotted, and your clothing has become moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have become corroded, and their corrosion will be a witness against you, and it will consume your flesh like fire. You have stored up treasure in the last days.(James 5:1–3)

I am convinced Bakker is a redeemed Christian with good intentions who was misled by the prosperity gospel popular in AOG churches during the PTL era. He has now confessed it was wrong. It takes a humbled man to make such an admission, that’s character, that impressed me.

It was my Mom’s church Providence Baptist that led me to Christ, when I was hopeless and suicidal. So I continue to go there. After some struggles, I earned a Masters in Theological studies from Liberty Baptist Seminary because it’s the only accredited school that holds to biblical inerrancy, traditional marriage, creation, and the traditional Gospel that offers most of the curriculum online.   (They taught me to research and write)
I graduated from Liberty but I do not approve of cessionationism, Falwell’s cult of personality, nor  of the way he treated Jim Bakker in the 1980s. Today I believe a small group just wanted to take Bakker’s ministry for themselves, the critics in the church’s motives were not Godly either but just as greedy and more mean spirited. Not that Bakker’s motives were always good, but, frankly, I understand and empathize with Bakker more than the self-righteousness Falwell exhibited – who accepted a lot of money from cultist Sun Myung Moon and was, frankly, a pompous ass himself at times, but, in his defense, Falwell was a an accomplished evangelist and spokesperson for morality.  He’s with the Lord now, so God bless him.

Most people are unaware that the majority Bakkers jail sentence we repealed for lack of evidence. It was trumped up. (At the same time Wachovia bank was laundering Pablo Escobar’s cocaine profits but the NC attorney General was more interested in crucifying Jim Bakker in the media.) So, today, I consider Bakker a Christian  hero for having the courage to “die to self,” admit past mistakes, and ride out an unjust sentence, much like Joseph in Egypt, and, upon release, proclaiming that he’s a new creation in Christ, while preaching against the prosperity Gospel (he used to advocate).

It takes a genuine Christian to admit he was mistaken and humble himself as Bakker did. Bakker truly seem genuine. Instead preaching to itching ears Bakker is now preaching impending judgment on America– the the ongoing apostasy and imminent appearance of antichrist (2 Thes 2:3) and pre-wrath rapture and tribulation judgements. It’s not what most folks like to hear… It takes a genuine anointing from the Spirit of God. No one likes to hear it and tend to shoot messenger.

 In context of the NT era. We Americans (including the unsophisticated folks living in the trailer park down the street)  are “the rich in this present age” –that’s right you are wealthy by biblical standards —that is, the rich being referred to in this convicting and scary passage:

Command those who are rich in this present age not to be proud and not to put their hope in the uncertainty of riches, but in God, who provides us all things richly for enjoyment,(1 Titus 6:17)

By world standards the average american is quite “rich in this present age. In Pope Francis’ homeland, Argentina, a salary of $30,000 American a year, literally less than what most school teachers make, ranks a worker one of the top 15.3% wealthiest folks in the country. In contrast, in Elzalvador, literally an American fast food job salary can put one under the top 1% richest in the country, (see source) So we Americns, as the rich of this age, have a stewardship and responsibility, to be humble and trust God, not the idol of wealth.
Jim Bakker, in your down moments please recall that VERY FEW preachers from any denomination are willing to call people out for greed and using God like “the tooth fairy .” My wife said it best, “If Christianity is not about forgiveness, then what it is it about?” The church needs more Jim Bakkers and fewer Rick Warrens and Joel Osteens.

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Countdown to Apocalypse: Four Horsemen

I made my national TV debut last Friday night. Overall I was pleased with the show and I am pleased that my statements were represented fairly by the producers. I spoke with Ray Gano who is featured prominently as a “prepper” and he felt good about how he was portrayed as well. I am told I will be on the upcoming episode “Prophets of Doom” as well. For those of you who would like to see the show but do not have digital cable the History Channel is posting it online here:

Countdown to Apocalypse: Four Horsemen

If you would like to discuss the show, please leave me a comment.

10 Nation European Union Newspaper Exegesis of Dan 7:24 & Rev 13:1

Here is some unabashed “newspaper exegesis”  based on: “As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom ten kings shall arise, and another shall arise after them; he shall be different from the former ones, and shall put down three kings.” (Da 7:24) and “And I saw a beast rising out of the sea, with ten horns and seven heads, with ten diadems on its horns and blasphemous names on its heads.”(Re 13:1)

I don’t know if my newspaper exegesis is accurate but what are we to make of the fact that Hal Lindsay believed in a “ten nation confederacy of European nations” (Late Great Planet Earth, 1970)? As well as Dallas Theological Seminary President and prophecy scholar John Walvoord anticipating the formation of a revived Roman Empire composed of a ten-nation confederacy? Walvoord wrote on Daniel 7:24:

The interpreter of the vision states plainly in verse 23 that the fourth beast represents the fourth kingdom, an earthly kingdom which will be different from the preceding kingdoms and will devour the whole earth, that is, be worldwide in its sway. In the process, it will tread down and break in pieces the preceding kingdoms. By so much, the interpretation eliminates the idea that the fifth kingdom refers to the rule of God in the new heavens and the new earth (Rev 21 and 22) or that it is merely a spiritual kingdom which gradually gains sway by persuasion, such as the kingdom of God in the earth at the present time. By its terminology the interpretation of verses 23–27 demands that, for the fifth kingdom to overcome the fourth, the fifth must be basically a sovereign and political kingdom, whatever its spiritual characteristics. By so much, it also demands that this be a future fulfillment, inasmuch as nothing in history corresponds to this.
The ten horns of the vision in verse 24 are declared to be ten kings that shall arise. They clearly are simultaneous in their reign because three of them are disrupted by the little horn which is another ruler, but not given the title of king here. He also will be different from the first, that is, from the ten horns, and shall subdue three of them.
The endless explanation of critical scholars attempting to find these ten kings in the history of the Grecian Empire or to find them later in Rome, by their very disagreement among themselves demonstrate the impossibility of satisfactorily explaining this verse as past history. If the ten kings are in power at the end of the age, which also seems to be supported by the ten kings of Revelation 13:1; 17:12, it follows that they must be still future. The fact that they appear in the book of Revelation, written long after the fall of the Grecian Empire, plainly relates them to the Roman Empire in its final stage.

John F. Walvoord, Daniel: The Key To Prophetic Revelation, 174.
And in his Revelation commentary:
The monstrosity of seven heads and ten horns probably refers to the remnants of the confederacy which formed the Roman Empire in the beginning, namely, the ten nations of which three were overthrown by the little horn of Daniel 7:8. The ten crowns, therefore, refer to the diadems or symbols of governmental authority. The fact that they have the names of blasphemy (“names” is properly plural) indicates their blasphemous opposition to God and to Christ.

John F. Walvoord, The Revelation of Jesus Christ, 198.

with that in mind read the below:

10 countries for a United States of Europe

Die Presse, 20 June 2012

Ten EU foreign ministers participating in a “study group for the future of Europe” aim to exert pressure to transform the EU into a federation along the lines of the US. Together they have prepared what the front-page headline in Die Presse describes as a “Plan for transformation into a European state.” On 19 June, the ten ministers* presented an initial report to the EU officials who will likely benefit the most from the initiative: Commission President José Manuel Barroso, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and Eurogroup President Jean-Claude Juncker.

More: http://www.presseurop.eu/en/content/news-brief/2211991-10-countries-united-states-europe

Here is a link to a translation of the original German article.

Personal Update & Exegetical Research on 2 Thessalonians 2 :1-12

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! My own is is ongoing as my wife and I are boarding a plane to spend a week with her parents in Iowa.  I really appreciate those of you who read my posts here on a regular basis and I have some exciting news. First, I finished my Masters of Arts degree in Theological Studies at Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary last Fall semester. While now I have some credentials to serve in this capacity, I have hopes of perhaps teaching at the college or seminary level, so I will be pursing further study at Southeastern Baptist Theological seminary this Spring. I will be concentrating on Greek intensives, with the goal of entering the PhD program in the near future. Second, I have signed a contract to co-author a book with Tom Horn on the Malachy Prophecy of the Popes. The reason I have not posted here much lately is that I have been working 14 hour days on that project. I assure you the subject is much deeper than I ever imagined. The research for this book has taken me places I never imagined possible. Look for some jaw dropping revelations this Spring.

My last research project  for my Master’s Degree was an exegetical paper on Paul’s most definitive statement concerning the Antichrist and end-times, 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12. It is a notoriously difficult pericope for exegesis but I chose it due to my deep interest in things eschatological.  Fee and Stuart even use it as an example of “problem passages:”

In many cases the reason the texts are so difficult for us is that, frankly, they were not written to us. That is, the original author and his readers are on a similar wavelength that allows the inspired author to assume a great deal on the part of his readers. Thus, for example, when Paul tells the Thessalonians that they are to recall that he “used to tell [them] these things,” and therefore “you know what is holding him back” (2 Thess 2:5–6), we may need to learn to be content with our lack of knowledge. [1]

Even so, I think this passage has a very important word for us today. In lieu of cutting an pasting the entire paper, I am going to post the introduction and a link to down load the pdf if yu want to read the whole thing. I derive several important implications for the modern church which I may post later as a separate post but  I wanted to make it available to you now as 2012 promises to be a big year.


No one likes waiting. Patience, persistence and perseverance are not popular words. They convey capricious craving, laborious longing and unrequited love. How intense is the longing when waiting for one of infinite worth? Christians live in the tension of what is called the “already but not yet” paradigm. This refers to the idea that Christ inaugurated the kingdom at the first advent but it will not be fully realized until the second at the eschaton. Gordon Fee writes, “The theological framework of the entire New Testament is eschatological.”[2] Thus, there is a tension inherent in the Christian worldview that eclipses all the yearnings of adolescence. It is the groaning of creation itself (Rom 8:22).

The purpose of this paper is to interpret 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12 using sound exegetical methodology. This presentation will first give a survey of the historical and literary context, and then it will offer exegesis of the text. Difficulties arise because Paul assumes knowledge on the part of the original recipients that subsequent generations do not have. Allusions to the Old Testament will be discussed based on Paul’s background. Each issue will be handled sequentially. The paper will attempt to show that because we still live in the apocalyptic tension of the already/not yet, the eschatological content still has great value for the contemporary church. Paul taught the Thessalonian church that they would recognize the “day of the Lord” by two harbingers: the apostasy and the appearance of the man of lawlessness.

Download: 2 Thessalonians 2 Exegetical Research – Cris D. Putnam


[1]Gordon D. Fee and Douglas K. Stuart, How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth, 3rd ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1993), 69.

[2]Ibid, 145.

Was Jesus a Failed Apocalyptic Prophet?

By Cris D. Putnam

A popular view amongst skeptics is that Jesus was failed apocalyptic prophet.  Their argument centers on the Olivet discourse in Mark 13:30 where Jesus says, “Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.” They contend that this means Jesus predicted his return in power prior to the death of the disciples and that since this failed to happen, Jesus is proven a false prophet.  Atheist websites galore use this as a proof text. Even a few serious scholars do as well.  For instance, Bart Ehrman argues:

Jesus appears to have anticipated that the coming judgment of God, to be brought by the Son of Man in a cosmic act of destruction and salvation, was imminent. It could happen at any time. But it would certainly happen within his generation.[1]

Albert Schweitzer held a similar position:

At the end of His career Jesus establishes a connection between the Messianic conception, in its final transformation, and the Kingdom, which had retained its eschatological character; He goes to His death for the Messiahship in its new significance, but He goes on believing in His speedy return as the Son of Man.[2]

These are established scholars and we must take them seriously. However, are they really being honest with the data? More so, are they accounting for all of the data or merely pulling a verse from its context because it seems to infer an error on Jesus’ part.

I was listening to Gary Habermas’ lecture on the historical Jesus and an interesting question surfaced concerning Mark 13:32,

But concerning that day or that hour, no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father (Mk 13:32).

Habermas uses this verse to demonstrate that Jesus’ messianic title “Son of Man” (cf. Dan 7:13) was not added later (no one would claim Jesus was God and then add a verse claiming he did not know something).  Theologically, this verse is an embarrassing detail so it has an air of authenticity.[3] But more importantly, this verse appears directly after Jesus’ alleged prediction that he would return in his own generation. Doesn’t it seem odd that Jesus would predict his return within a very narrow time frame (his own generation) and then immediately say that he did not know when it would be? Actually, it seems incoherent for a reason. The skeptics have it wrong.

Jesus did not really teach that his return would be imminent. In fact, he provided hints it would not be. In Jesus’ parable about the ten talents, which is clearly about him leaving and then returning, he includes a pertinent detail, “Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them” (Mt 25:19). The parable of the Ten Virgins is another one which is centered on Jesus’ return and it provides a similar clue, “As the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and slept” (Mt 25:5). Craig Blomberg asks why Jesus would bother addressing so many worldly matters if he really believed as the critics suggest:

the majority of Jesus’ teaching presupposes a significant interval before the end of the world, because Christ spends much time instructing his disciples on such mundane matters as paying taxes, marriage and divorce, dealing with one’s enemies, stewardship of wealth, and so on.[4]

Jesus also implied an extended period of world evangelization, “And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come”( Mt 24:14). It seems absurd to argue that Jesus and the apostles would have expected world evangelization in their lifetime. This begs the question what did Jesus mean by this generation.

From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place (Mk 13:28-30).

The “these things” of v. 30 must be the same as the “these things” of v. 29, which clearly refer to signs preceding Christ’s second coming. Jesus was teaching that the generation who witnessed the signs he had previously outlined in chapter 13 would see his return. There has been no other generation in history prior to our own that has seen these signs in such abundance.

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[1] Bart D. Ehrman, Jesus, Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium (Oxford: Oxford University Press, USA, 1999),160.

[2] Albert Schweitzer, The Quest of the Historical Jesus (Joseph Kreifels).

[3] If you are interested in how Jesus can be God and not know something, the solution lies in his two natures human and divine. Look into the two minds view here.

[4] Craig Blomberg, in Michael J. Wilkins, Jesus Under Fire: Modern Scholarship Reinvents the Historical Jesus (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 1996), 31.