What causes apostasy in the Church? Find out with guest Dennis Pollock on television’s “Christ in Prophecy”!
Air Date: May 9, 2021
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Tim Moore: Gross apostasy is raging in the Church today, and most professing Christians seem to be unaware of how serious it has become. That’s because the average Christian today is biblically ignorant. Stay tuned for an insightful discussion of Christian apostasy.
Tim Moore: Greetings in the name of Jesus, our Blessed Hope, and welcome to Christ in Prophecy. I am Tim Moore sitting in today for Dr. Reagan. And with me is my co-host, Nathan Jones, who serves as our Internet Evangelist. Also, in the studio with us is one of this ministries dearest friends, Dennis Pollock. Dennis served as Dr. Reagan’s Assistant Evangelist for almost 12 years, from 1993 to 2005, at which time he formed his own ministry called, Spirit of Grace. So, Dennis, welcome back to Lamb & Lion.
Dennis Pollock: Well, thank you, Tim. It’s great to be here.
Nathan Jones: Good to have you on, Dennis.
Dennis Pollock: Thank you, Nathan.
Nathan Jones: Most people don’t realize that Dennis was my predecessor. So, you laid the foundation for me, and then you went off to start your own fascinating ministry. Maybe you could tell folks a little about what your ministry does.
Dennis Pollock: Yeah. Well, our ministry does a lot of things. You know I think ministry springs from the heart of the minister, and God puts things in your heart, and then it becomes manifest in your ministry.
So, for example I’ve always had in my heart a love for Africa. I don’t know where it came from except to say it came from God. So, as a result we began to do African ministries. I ended up with an African wife. And it’s become a big part of our ministry. But it’s not the only part of our ministry, also I always have loved the Bible. And I love to read it. I love to think about it. I love to analyze it and teach it. And so, a huge part of our ministry has to do with Bible teaching, on all kinds of subjects.
And I really believe one of the reasons I was at Lamb & Lion is God knew I was a little bit deficient in the area of Bible prophecy, and the return of Christ. And I spent all that time with Dr. Reagan and with Lamb & Lion teaching and learning so when I started my own ministry I would have some insights about that that I didn’t previously have. So, we do a number of things. We’ve got YouTube Channels as well.
Nathan Jones: And you have a fantastic outreach to people with diabetes, right?
Dennis Pollock: Yeah, that has been a big shocker in my life. My mom had diabetes, had her legs amputated. And it started coming after me. And I realized I had some serious blood sugar issues. And so, I found some answers. I prayed. It’s what we Christian do. God showed me some things. Brought my glucose levels down. And now I’ve got a YouTube channel that’s just got huge numbers of people watching.
Tim Moore: Fantastic. Well, you mentioned having insights that the Lord lays on your heart. So, today we want to look at some of the insights that you have, and that we want to share with our viewers regarding apostasy in the Church. And so, I’d like to first define our terms. So, how would you define apostasy? And how does that differ from heresy as it affects the Church?
Dennis Pollock: Well, I would say apostasy and heresy are two close friends.
Tim Moore: Yes, they are.
Dennis Pollock: Apostasy, and we were talking about that earlier, is probably more a drifting away from standard orthodox biblical Christianity, towards something that is much less than that, and often becomes very dangerous. With heresy, and you maybe can give a more specific definition, in my mind heresy relates to maybe a specific doctrine that you just totally miss. What do you think? What would you say is the difference?
Tim Moore: Well, I agree with you, apostasy too often is a drifting away. In other words what once was grounded and certain, biblically grounded, whether an individual or an entire church begins to drift to where they no longer are standing where they once were, and they no longer believe what are the tenets of the faith. Whereas heresy is a specific doctrine that sometimes gets added to or adulterated in the terminology to where we are adding things that are not scriptural.
We could call an apostasy kind of a movement in terms of the churches position on marriage. Too many people now are becoming very mushy on the issue of marriage. Many pastors are afraid to talk about the sin, sexual sin, of even cohabitation or other sexual sins. And that is not our focus today, but that has been a clear drift from biblical principles. So, I think that is where we are going today is the drift we see in the Church away from what God has revealed. And we want to focus on that especially with regard to His Son. Nathan.
Nathan Jones: Well to add to that, I think one seems to be focused more too on a willingness, a desire to break from Christian orthodoxy. The other one seems to be built into ignorance. It’s an accidental happening. You put your desires for what the Bible should say, over the Bible. So, there is almost one that you are trying to change the biblical doctrine of the Church, and the other that it’s through ignorance, or your own personal things that you are changing the direction of the Church.
Tim Moore: Well, one of the things that Denise mentioned built on that very idea is the fact that too often apostasy arises because churches are ignoring, at least a good portion, of the Word of God. They preach on favorite passage, or favorite stories but they don’t preach the whole counsel of God. And of course, this particular episode was sparked when Dr. Reagan saw a conversation that you had regarding apostasy in the Church today. And in the message you read a letter from a fella who wanted to respond to one of your messages. And he made this outrageous comment, he said, “The teachings of Jesus have nothing to do with modern Christianity.” Instead, he argued that Christian should pay attention only to the grace teachings of Paul. What was your response?
Dennis Pollock: Well, the first response in my heart was just shock. That anybody could say, and who professes Christianity that Christianity has nothing to do with the teachings of Jesus. But I’ve heard so many comments that maybe don’t go quite that far, but they are essentially saying the same thing. That I’ve become aware this is a huge issue. We are not talking about a group of 12 people in some little country church that have gotten off track. We are talking about probably millions of Christians that have decided that Jesus and Paul preached different Gospels. Paul’s was right. Jesus was right for His day but is no longer right for us.
So, basically what they want you to do in your Gospels is go the cross, and everything to the left of the cross, that is all His teachings, His life story, all of that just rip it out and don’t pay attention to it because it will mess you up. It’s okay to think about the cross and the resurrection but forget His teachings, we are now New Testament Christians, we believe in Paul. And I did a YouTube message about, “Did Jesus and Paul Preach the Same Gospel?” And you wouldn’t believe how many criticisms, how many times I’ve been blasted over that, telling me I’m ignorant, I’m a fool, I’m this, I’m that. This is crazy, everybody knows Paul showed the real gospel, what Jesus said isn’t even relevant. So, I have done a lot of videos about this whole issues when I realized just how many people believe this way, and they need correcting.
Tim Moore: Well, what’s ironic is some go the other extreme, they say, well, Jesus never mentioned, for instance homosexuality, whereas Paul condemned it. So, Paul must have been wrong, or he was just fixated on his own day and age. And so, they kind of pick and choose what elements they want to adopt.
Dennis Pollock: Exactly.
Tim Moore: And that’s what we are talking about, not taking the whole counsel of the Word of God.
Nathan Jones: Well, you’ve got even the other flip side of the coin. We get this a lot, I know you answer the Bible questions for the ministry when you were here, I do now. And I get these red letter Bible Christians, very proud, I only read the red letters of the Bible. Which the old ancient manuscripts they weren’t red, but modern translators have put the words of Jesus in red. And they’ll say, only what Jesus says matters, and the rest Paul is a heretic, he taught a totally different gospel. What do you think about that as well?
Dennis Pollock: Well, again it is a huge moving away from what Christians have always believed. What Paul believed. What Jesus believed. Which is that the entire Scripture is inspired by God. It’s not like when you read what Jesus said that’s inspired, and then you read what Paul said, that’s uninspired. In fact, Paul himself says, “All Scripture is inspired by God.” Peter said about the prophets, “The holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” So, when I am reading Paul, I’m getting things straight from the heart of God. When I am reading Jesus, I’m getting things straight from the heart of God, as with Isaiah, as with the books of Moses, the whole thing.
Tim Moore: Well, it’s funny you mentioned that because we also hear a lot of people say, “Well, I’m a New Testament Christian.” And we are sometime going to turn our attention more focused manner on the Old Testament, but some Christians say, well, that was the Old Testament. That was a previous covenant that really doesn’t apply to us. And so, they discount the entire Old Testament in favor of the New Testament. And we know that Christ came to fulfill the prophecies and Peter himself preached sermon after sermon that pointed to fulfilled prophecy as proof of Jesus being the Messiah.
Nathan Jones: I had to look this up because I was curious about this. Jesus said, “It is written,” in other words He referred to the Old Testament 24 direct quotations, 78 indirect quotations, 26 exact quotations from the Pentateuch. He called the Old Testament the Scriptures, the Word of God, and the Wisdom of God. And He most… and I thought this was the most interesting… of all the books He quoted Exodus, Deuteronomy, Isaiah, and the Psalms were the most quoted. So, clearly, Jesus didn’t care to exactly quote all His words, because He is in the Trinity, and the Trinity wrote the Bible. So, the Old Testament, the New Testament, Paul, Revelation — it’s all the Word of God.
Tim Moore: And Jesus referenced all the way back to Genesis with regard to the role of men and women and their relationship in marriage. Well, many Christian teachers today that have gone to a misguided philosophy say, well, the God of the Old Testament was always angry and upset, He was full of wrath; but Jesus is full of grace and love. So, obviously there is a dichotomy. We do not believe that, so how would you answer those folks?
Dennis Pollock: Well, yeah, absolutely. It’s not like there are two Gods; there is the Old Testament God and the New Testament God, it is the same God all the way through. He has provided forgiveness through Christ, absolutely. But He still gets upset about sin.
And you know, when I started to realize there were a lot of people that wanted the idea of Paul’s gospel as they see it, but they didn’t want to hear anything from Jesus, I began to think about why would somebody want to believe that?
You know usually we tend to believe what we want to believe, and there is a motive for it. Now, if you believe the whole scripture you’re not allowed the luxury of believing what you want, you just have to believe what it says. But for a lot of these people who pick and choose they have a vested interest in wanting to believe this, but not that. Wanting to believe Paul but not Jesus.
So, as I thought about it, the conclusion I came to was Jesus was really tough about behavior, and their idea is, well, Paul says behavior does not matter. Paul says, just believe. You don’t have to change. You don’t have to be anything different than what you are. And obviously they like that idea. They like the idea that I can become a Christian and I don’t have to change at all, because Paul said you just believe. But it’s absolutely wrong for many different reasons, but one of them is, are you really reading Paul? Because Paul could be as tough as anybody about the lifestyle.
Tim Moore: Sure, he could.
Dennis Pollock: And he even said, “I declared that men should repent and turn to God and do works that befit repentance.”
Tim Moore: Well, that goes in keeping with the whole idea of what we refer to as hyper-grace; the teaching that there is no need for repentance. That once you are saved you can do anything, hyper-grace covers you, and you don’t have to have a penitent spirit, or a contrite heart ever again because all your sins are covered. And that’s not what Paul would say.
Dennis Pollock: No. Let me just give a kind of illustration that may help people see how absurd this is. Let’s imagine, now when I was young I went to a church where we had testimony meetings. I don’t know if you’ve ever been in that kind of situation. People would get up and they would testify, here is what the Lord did for me, and here’s how I got saved, and so forth.
So, let’s imagine a testimony in a home group. There are maybe 20 people in the home and several new believers are getting up to share their story. And one of them gets up and says, “Praise God, Hallelujah. Jesus has saved me.” Everybody else says, “Amen. Hallelujah!” He says, “Let me just tell you what the Lord did for me. Before I was saved I was a thief. And I would go into houses when people weren’t home I would burglarize them. I would take their stuff and go.” He said, “But, now I am born again.” He said, “Well, of course they told me I didn’t have to change, I could still just only believe.”
Tim Moore: But I’m a Christian thief now.
Dennis Pollock: Yeah, exactly. “I am a Christian thief.” So, after I steal all their valuables I leave a Gospel tract on the kitchen table. And everybody says, “Praise the Lord! Hallelujah.” Another lady gets up she says, “Well, you know before I was a Christian I used to sleep around. I slept with almost all my coworkers. But now that I’ve been saved, well, I still sleep around, but I tell them, ‘Jesus loves them at the end.'” I mean it’s just ridiculous the idea that you don’t have to change.
And back to Paul, you know if you look at for example Romans 5 it is all about grace, how we are justified by grace, justified by faith, and it’s not of works. So, you know that fits with their idea. But if you look at Romans 6 he turns around and says, “Well, shall we just continue in sin that grace may abound?” He says, “God forbid, or certainly not.” He says things like sin will not have dominion over you. You are not under law, but you are under grace. He goes on and on saying when you get born again you change; and if you haven’t changed you haven’t been born again.
Nathan Jones: Amen.
Dennis Pollock: James tells us faith without works is dead. He said the demons, you talk about believing God, he said the demons believe and they tremble. And I thought to myself, you know the demons in some ways are smarter than a lot of people who call themselves Christians. At least the demons tremble over the fact, they know they are not going to Heaven. But there are a lot of Christians they don’t even tremble. It is like I will live like I want. I’ll sleep around. I’ll do this. I’ll do that. All I have to do is believe. And they are going to be in for a shock because Jesus said, “People are going to come to me at the last day and say, ‘Well, Lord, Lord, we’ve done all kinds of things in your name.'” He is going to say, “Depart from me, those of you that practice lawlessness, or work iniquity.
Tim Moore: I did not know you. Well, stay tuned as we return for more conversations with Dennis Pollock.
Nathan Jones: Welcome back to our interview of Dennis Pollock regarding the rapidly increasing apostasy in the Church today. Well, one of the rapidly increasing apostasies I hear a lot from say Donald Dolmus down in Nicaragua and other people who are related to the ministry, especially in South and Central America is the health and wealth gospel. This idea of prosperity theology. Do you believe that God has created us to live healthy, wealthy, and wise at all times?
Tim Moore: Our best life now?
Nathan Jones: Best life now, yes.
Dennis Pollock: Well, no I don’t. I mean if I get sick I’m going to pray for healing, and I’m going to trust the Lord for healing.
Nathan Jones: Absolutely.
Dennis Pollock: But I’m not going to tell you there haven’t been seasons in my life where I haven’t felt good, and where I’ve had to go to the doctor. And you look at Job and he went through a season where he was miserable, in his health, in his finances, he lost almost everything including his children.
So, we go through seasons in life that are not fun. And if you think once you get saved you can just believe God with all your heart and you’ll never have a health issue again, you’ll never go through struggles financially. Well, you are living in a fantasy world. And the answer for that is just live life for awhile and you’ll find that. It amazes me people can cling to that when your own life testifies against it. We all struggle with different things.
That being said, I don’t believe God wants us to be dirt poor all of our lives and to struggle. You know David said, “I’ve never seen the righteous forsaken, nor seen begging bread.” If I lose a job I am going to believe God for another job. But that’s one of the keys is you work, and you make money. You know the Bible teaches about being responsible, being financially responsible, working hard. Anybody who does that they will tend to prosper more than the lazy person who never works, and never uses any kind of financial wisdom.
Nathan Jones: Absolutely.
Tim Moore: The heresy that blends into that ideology though is the belief that if you are suffering whether health or financially, then you are being punished for some sin. And the Lord Himself made it very clear, why was the young man born blind, was it his fault or his parents’ fault? He said, “No, no, it’s so the power and the glory of God could be manifested through Him.” Sometimes we are given opportunities to manifest the power and glory of God even in our circumstances which for a time seem down and out, but are we making ourselves available to be glorifying of God and bring Him honor.
Nathan Jones: Absolutely. And I think Jesus lambasted that with His teaching in Mark 10:21, “One thing you lack,” he told this rich man, “go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor and you will have treasure in Heaven, and come take up the cross and follow Me.” Taking up the cross means suffering life in this life but eternal rewards in Heaven. So, it’s funny that a lot of these health and wealth gospel guys end up getting sick and dying anyway, so where is their theology there?
Dennis Pollock: Yeah.
Tim Moore: Well, another thing that we touched on previously, Dennis is the idea that we have even heard from major evangelical pastors claiming that the Old Testament has been replaced, it has no relevance to modern Christianity. And one of the best known teachers recently said that he has discovered that God is never upset, or angry with anybody because Jesus took on the wrath of God for the whole world, so God no longer is mad about anything. There is no wrath to be poured out. Obviously, an unbiblical attitude. What is your thought?
Dennis Pollock: When I read this particular teacher’s article about it. And thought this guy has been on TV for years. He’s got his own Bible college. I was thinking, what Bible is he reading? The wrath of God doesn’t disappear when you flip from Malachi to Matthew. And when you read Revelation. One of the statements this guy made was, “If God ever judges America He’s going to have to apology to Jesus.” In other words, Jesus so took everybody’s sins that it would be a sin against Jesus for God to judge any nation, or any group of people. Well, that is ridiculous, the whole book of Revelation is about the pouring out of God’s wrath. But not only that the Apostle Paul says to the sinner you’re storing up wrath. In the day of wrath in Revelation are the righteous judgment of God. And Paul says, “Therefore knowing the terror of the Lord we persuade men.” I mean we could give scripture after scripture.
Tim Moore: John the Baptist said, “That he who believes in the Son has eternal life. But he who does not believe will not see life.” Believe in the Son.
Nathan Jones: John 3:36.
Dennis Pollock: Yeah.
Tim Moore: Because the wrath of God abides on Him. If you reject Jesus Christ the wrath of God abides on you.
Dennis Pollock: Yeah.
Tim Moore: It could not be any clearer than that.
Dennis Pollock: Yeah, the word abide means remains. So, what that means is if you are not going to receive Christ, then when you get up in the morning the wrath of God is on you. When you go to bed at night the wrath of God is on you. You are living in the wrath of God when you die, you’ll pay the price for it.
So, again, it’s almost shocking to me to see how far off people drift. And the only thing I can conclude is they have learned a pet set of doctrines that are not even right, and they hang around other preachers that preach those doctrines. They don’t really dig into the Word, and therefore they come to believe it with a certainty just because they’ve heard it so many times from so many people, who heard it from the same group of people, who heard it from the same group of people.
But open the Bible and find out what the Bible says, and you can easily dispel. I mean you don’t have to be a theologian to see that’s wrong. Anybody, just open the Bible read through the New Testament one time. Take out a notebook and start writing down how many times it refers to God’s wrath, God’s judgment, God being upset. Revelation 2 and 3 Jesus is saying to the Church, “I don’t like what you are doing. If you don’t repent I’m going to take your lampstand away. If you don’t repent I’m going to kill some of the people in your church.” Jesus is hot. He’s upset in Revelation 2 and 3 with some of the churches, not all.
But clearly, you know some people think, okay as a New Testament Jesus you’ve got this Jesus shield, you hold it up and then you drink your whiskey, and you know you do all your evil stuff, and all God can see is Jesus because you’ve got your Jesus shield up. But when you read Revelation 2 and 3 where Jesus says, “I don’t like this. I don’t like that. You better repent.” And every time when He writes to those churches, the very first statement He makes is, “I know your works.” In other words, I can see right through your Jesus shield, and I can see what you’re doing.
Tim Moore: Jesus is not a shield so much, as He comes within us and transforms our hearts, which permeates our entire being. And that is how we are to live out our faith.
Dennis Pollock: Right.
Nathan Jones: Well, plus our sins are what put Jesus on the cross. So, why would we want to continue living in sin? That would be like you marry your wife, you love her, you cheat on her, you apologize, but you keep doing it over and over again. You take that grace she gave you and keep throwing it back in their face. And they treat Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, and His grace with contempt.
Dennis Pollock: Yeah, they sure do.
Tim Moore: One of the things that we have seen, and there was a pastor in Nashville, Tennessee just recently that announced that the Bible is not the Word of God. He said, “It is Man’s record of His search for God, and therefore it is full of myth, legend and superstition.” That is a quote. I can’t imagine a pastor of an actual Christian church making that statement, but he did.
And yet, I’m reminded that in the Old Testament the prophet Amos made this statement in chapter 8, verse 11, he said, “Behold the days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will send a famine on the land, not a famine for bread, or thirst for water, but rather for hearing the words of the Lord. People will stagger from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east; they will go to and fro to seek the word of the Lord. But they will not find it.” And with ministers such as this it seems we have arrived at yet another season of famine of the Word of the Lord.
Dennis Pollock: Well, yeah, you’re right and there is an irony to this because when in the history of the world have there ever been more Bibles available, Bibles being sold, Christian Bible software, Christian television, Christian this, Christian that? All of this stuff, and yet with all the Christian resources that are available we seem to be as ignorant as ever. And I think the reason is maybe some people depend more on their particular favorite group of preachers than they do actually opening the Bible up and reading it.
And there is something to be said about just reading the Bible. Start to finish, and when you get done start it again. And when you do you start to take on the attitudes, the values. And we talked about drift earlier, and that’s really kind of the essence of apostasy is drifting away from truth. You know when I open up my Bible and read it, it is fundamentally unchanged from the Bible my dad used to read it 50-60 years ago. And when he was reading it, it was the same Bible that people read a 100 years before that, the Bible doesn’t drift. The words stay the same. The concepts stay the same. We’ve got a few new versions, but the concepts are literally unchanged.
Tim Moore: Yes, they are.
Dennis Pollock: So, the Bible doesn’t drift, and that’s why we have Evangelicals that hold to the Bible tenaciously we are looked on as freaks, because its like, why don’t you get on the right side of history? Why don’t you just start figuring out that we’ve changed, and you need to change. And it’s like, well, my Bible hasn’t changed. It’s the same. And the same Bible that tells me for example, that God so loved the world He gave His only begotten Son, also tells me how I ought to live. It tells me what’s right; what’s wrong. It gives me an entire code of ethics. I don’t have the luxury that many people do which is to come up with my own morality. I have to embrace the morality of Scripture.
Tim Moore: We certainly do. And as a matter of fact, to conclude I would repeat what Jude did. Even as Jude wanted to write to the people he was corresponding with he said, he felt the necessity to appeal to them to contend earnestly for the faith. How do we do that? By being like the Bereans and being grounded in the Word of God.
Nathan Jones: Welcome back to Christ in Prophecy. Dennis it is great having you here. How can people get in touch with your ministry?
Dennis Pollock: Well, our website is spiritofgrace.org, and also you can go to YouTube and type in Dennis Pollock and you’ll find all kinds of videos.
Tim Moore: Dennis I also want to thank you for being with us today. May the Lord continue to richly bless your ministry.
And folks, that is our program for today. I hope it has been a blessing to you, and I hope that the Lord willing you will be back with us next week. Until then this is Tim Moore speaking for Lamb & Lion Ministries saying, “Godspeed.”
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