31 October, 2007

Martin Luther's Body Exhumed, Found "Rolled Over"

Wittenburg, Germany - In a shocking story that is now making headlines on only the most reputable of news sources, a recent exhumation of the body of Martin Luther showed that the Reformer has indeed "rolled over in is grave." Luther was buried beneath the pulpit of the Castle Church in Wittenburg after his death in 1546. As noted in the records of the burial ceremony, Luther was placed within the tomb laying on his back. When the work crew opened the tomb over the weekend to perform maintenance on it, they found the remains of Luther lying face down, indicating that at some point over the past 450 years something has caused Luther to roll over. Many theories and questions now abound.

"This is, in some ways, both funny and highly disturbing" stated Peter Lundenfestenaker, pastor of Peace Lutheran Church in Green Bay, Wisconsin. "Various people within Lutheranism have joked over the years when this or that new policy was passed that 'Luther must be rolling over in his grave' and low and behold, we find that he has."

Indeed, there have been numerous complaints over the past 200 years that many Protestant churches in general have departed from the Biblical Christianity that was espoused by Luther and the other Reformers.

"It's no shock to me" said Michael Ingvestenknocken, pastor of Soli Deo Gloria Lutheran Church in St. Paul, Minnesota. "We've gone in every direction except straight for well over the past one hundred years. I'm not the least bit surprised that this has happened."

In the past 500 years since the beginning of the Reformation, many have surmised that Protestantism no longer, on the whole, represents its original foundations. Some of those foundations which are seemingly no longer important include the doctrines of Sola Scriptura, Solus Christos, Sola Fide, Sola Gratia and Soli Deo Gloria.

"We gave up on all of that sola stuff a long time ago" said Rev. Patricia Hines, pastor of Trinity Presbyterian Church (USA) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. "While that kind of jargon worked in Luther's time, we feel the true spirit of the Reformation today lies in the questioning of what is believed to be true, and seeking out new paths of spiritual exploration. That's essentially what Luther did, he questioned the status quo. He wasn't going to be bound by a theocratic dictatorship that would tell him what to believe. I believe it was Luther who said 'My conscience is captive," and we must have the same attitude. Our consciences are free only with they become captive to our own free thinking."

While the religious world looks on in curiosity and waits for an explanation as to why Luther has done a one-eighty, many are dismissing it as merely coincidence. But the situation has brought to light the question as to whether the "Spirit of the Reformation" has indeed, by and large, been lost in Protestant Christendom.

When asked what continues to make Protestants distinct from the Roman Catholic Church one minister commented,

"I believe the 'Spirit of the Reformation' is still alive and well today. Protestants are still seeking independence from the shackles of Rome" said Rev. Brian Humphries, pastor of Little Hills Episcopal Church in Nashville, Tennessee. "We won't be bound by outdated doctrines such as the virgin birth, or the literal resurrection story like Rome still teaches. Furthermore, Rome still has this idea of sin, which we enlightened Protestants gave up on a long time ago. And even more so today the Catholic church continues to hold a very close-minded view on issues such as abortion and homosexuality, which we too have become more enlightened about. So I think the Reformation continues today."

So on this Reformation Day, in light of these strange and unusual events, many Protestants may find themselves faced with the question "Is the true Spirit of the Reformation still at work in our lives and in our churches today?"

29 October, 2007

Heckler at Benny Hinn Miracle Service: "Don't Slay Me Bro!"

Hampton, Virginia - At a recent Benny Hinn Crusade meeting in Hampton things did not go as smoothly as many would have hoped. Hinn's "Miracle Service" met at the Hampton Coliseum before a packed house, and while almost the entire audience was overjoyed by the opportunity to witness Hinn in action, one man came with a different agenda. Bailey Truden, a college student at Virginia Tech, showed up at the service with one thing in mind; to mock Hinn and disrupt his "Miracle Service."

Truden entered the service pretending to act like all of the other participants, with a smile on his face and a song in his heart. He filled out the visitors card given to him by the ushers as he entered and took his seat next to the excited worship participants. As the service began, he stood up clapped his hands with the rest of the people, and even managed to force out a few tears at emotionally appropriate moments. The music time went on for close to two hours, but Truden patiently waited for his moment. It was when things began to settled down and Hinn took the stage to "preach" that Truden seized upon the opportunity to strike.

"As brother Hinn stood up to speak, everyone one was quiet and focused, waiting expectantly for what was about to happen" said Ellen Pitts, who witnessed Sunday's events. "This loud voice broke the silence, and this man was screaming out something that I couldn't understand."

A tape of the program shows Hinn for a moment becoming confused, and then becoming angry. A transcript of the incident is as follows,

Hinn: "Hallelujah, what a wonderful moment of peace (sings the word peace several times), can't you feel..."
Truden: (Screaming somthing)
Hinn: "I'm sorry, sir, you're going to have to be quiet."
Truden: "You're a fake. You're a joke."
Hinn: "Get him out of here! He's a servant of Satan!"

The tape then shows the confrontation continuing for about a minute before Hinn finally screams "enough!"

Hinn himself jumped off of the stage and ran towards Truden. Truden tried to run but members of the security force grabbed him. Truden resisted violently, flailing his arms and legs and screaming at the security officers. But it was when Hinn arrived that things became even more chaotic. Hinn approached the restrained Truden with the microphone in his left hand and his right hand extended towards him, ready to lay hands on him. When Truden saw him coming he began to shout "Don't slay me bro! Don't slay me!" It was at that moment that Hinn reached down and touched Truden, immediately causing him to fall to the floor and shake violently. Everyone cheered and Hinn shouted "Hallelujah" and began singing the hymn "How Great Thou Art."

Truden remained unconscious for the remainder of the service and was escorted off the property only after all of the other worshipers had left. He was sternly warned not to come back again, or else Hinn would have to "slay him" again.

TBNN attempted to contact Hinn's office for comment, but calls were not returned. It was discovered that the University of Florida Security Office has contacted Hinn about helping out with security during an upcoming speak by Senator Jonathan Edwards.

26 October, 2007

Jesse Jackson Calls for "Boycott of Heaven"

Chicago, Illinois - The Reverend Jesse Jackson released a public statement late on Thursday calling for a "boycott of Heaven." Jackson called for the boycott based upon "certain scriptures" that he had apparently "never read before" particularly 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 which reads, "Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, no adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God."

Jackson stated in the press release,

"I was shocked, dismayed, stunned and stupefied when I came across these words. I had never seen them before, and they had never come before my eyes. It is imperative, and highly important that we confront such a limiting, and immoral statement as this and take issue with it so that we may approach it and come before it with a spirit of disqualification, dissatisfaction, disappreciation and disassociation."

Jackson went on further to state,

"It is immoral, immaterial, immature and incomprehensible that any place, whether on earth or extraterrestrial or not on earth to make claims of exclusitivity against any people based on who they are or what they done. Heaven is no exception. I call upon all people of conscience to stand against Heaven until such policies of limitation are changed and made different."

In addition to calling for a boycott of Heaven, Jackson has also called for a march on the Mall in Washington D.C. on November 20th calling for "discrimination" to end. As Jackson further states,

"The policies of this administration have only furthered such opinions and caused them to grow. We will pressure Congress and the White House to come out and take a stand against Heaven."

In an interview with Jackson he explained what a boycott of Heaven entails.

"What we are trying to do is show that perhaps a mistake has been made here" said Jackson. "It is highly immoral and wrong for any place to put up barriers and not allow people to come in. Until these discriminatory policies are changed and altered we will not be going there."

A local conservative Anglican pastor in the Chicago area who wished to remain anonymous commented on that statement by saying "If Jackson keeps doing what he's doing then he's got nothing to worry about."

24 October, 2007

Man "Devastated" to Discover Krakozhia Not Real

Halifax, Nova Scotia - Three years ago Christopher Price saw a movie that deeply affected his life. Price went to see the move "The Terminal" with several of his friends one night, and what he saw in the movie touched him deeply. The setting of the movie is in the International Transit Terminal of JFK airport in New York. The story is about a man named Victor Navorski, a traveler from the country of Krakozhia, which, in the movie, is depicted as a former Soviet Republic. Due to a revolution that breaks out in Navorski's country while he is en route to the United States, his visa is revoked. He gets lost in the shuffle of bureaucracy for nine months, having to live in the airport terminal.

As amusing as the story line might be for most people, for Price it was anything but.

"When I saw the movie I had been interested in missions for a number of years" said Price. "While we watched this movie my friends all around me were laughing and enjoying it, but I was crying on the inside. I couldn't stop thinking about Krakozhia. I had never heard of the place and seriously wondered why. Why hadn't someone gone there with the gospel?"

Price further recalls that night. After the movie was over he went back to his apartment and spent the night searching maps for Krakozhia, only to come up empty-handed. By the next morning, Price had "surrendered to missions" and had dedicated his life to reaching the people of Krakozhia. Price then began to set about the task of raising support to serve on the "mission field."

"I had prayer cards made up" said Price. "I would talk to perfect strangers on planes and buses and tell them about my vision for the unreached people of Krakozhia. Most people, like me had never heard of the place. Some had, and some even had the audacity to laugh at me, sometimes hysterically, when I told them that I was going to be a missionary there."

Price's passion for the people of Krakozhia continued to grow and grow, until this past weekend when he finally came to grips with something sad but true...that Krakozhia is not a real place.

"I was at church this past Sunday and we had some new visitors that day" said Price. "I was talking to one of them after the service and gave him my prayer card, and the guy laughed. I thought 'Yep, here's another guy who just doesn't care.' Then this guy says to me, 'Hey, you know this place isn't real.'"

The conversation that followed was filled with shock and dismay for Price. Not only did he have to come to grips with the fact that the country did not exist, but that his friends and church members had never had the gall to tell him the truth.

"We just didn't want to hurt him" said friend Mindy Adams. "He was always so excited and pumped up, I just didn't have the heart to break it to him."

"I always thought it was just a joke" said Alvin Connely, Price's pastor. "I just assumed it was meant to be funny. Never once did I think that Chris was being serious."

Now, "devastated" by the shocking revelation, Price is seeking direction for his life.

"I have not the faintest idea what I'm going to do now" said Price. "Everything I've been pursuing for the last three years has been from the neighborhood of make believe."

Several of Price's friends have tried disparately to get him to look at other possibilities for mission work, but seemingly to no avail, as Price notes,

"Mindy was telling me the other day about these places called Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, and I just told her 'Look, I'm not going to be made a fool of again!' I'm not about to look ignorant again, that's for sure. 'Tajikistan,' ha, where did she get that one from?"

22 October, 2007

More Churches Accepting and Affirming Calvinists in Their Midst

Austin, Texas - Pastor Micah Law is excited about the direction that his church is going these days.

"We've become more open and accepting of others" said Law, pastor of Riverside Baptist Church in Austin during a recent interview with TBNN. "We know that our decision to become more open and accepting of Calvinists and Reformed people has caused a lot of trouble within our own denomination, but we feel it is the right thing to do."

Law's church is part of a growing number of churches within the Southern Baptist Convention that are declaring themselves to be Calvinist/Reformed/Sovereign Grace (CRSG)-friendly. While many SBC churches are currently struggling against Calvinistic tendencies within the denomination, some, like Riverside Baptist, are embracing the movement.

"While I myself am personally not a Calvinist, I don't think there's anything wrong with being one" claimed Law. "These people love the Lord and want to serve him too, and I don't think we should hinder them. There's no reason we should shun them or not let them become full members of our Southern Baptist churches."

But not everyone is so welcoming of the idea of a church that openly accepts Calvinists.

"I think it's absolutely terrible" said Rev. Danny Douglas, pastor of Longview Baptist Church in Onida, Arkansas. "It's one thing to say you welcome a Calvinist into your church. Of course we'd welcome one if he came, but we are going to be honest with him about his sin. For him to call himself a Christian and yet remain a Calvinist is just wrong. And these churches out there in our own denomination that are welcoming Calvinists, four and five-pointers and embracing them as brothers and sisters are in serious error."

Still others are even more infuriated by the whole tendency within the denomination.

"My son went off to college and became one of those blasted Calvinists!" shouted an angry Mark Tenderfoot, from Memphis, Tennessee. "I thought I had raised him right. We sent him off to school and a year later he comes to us and says 'Mom and dad, I'm a Calvinist.' It just broke our hearts. We still love him, but he's just not the same to us. Every time we see him we just can't get past it."

But despite objections CRSG-friendly churches continue to grow within the SBC.

"We have seen the good character of Calvinists within the SBC towards those of us who are not" stated Law. "We particularly respect Pastor Dever up at Capitol Hill Baptist, and Dr. Mohler. Both fine men of God. While I don't agree with all of their positions, they have been very gracious to those of us in the SBC with whom they differ and have done a lot for the cause of the conservative revival within our denomination."

When asked to what degree Riverside Baptist Church would allow a Calvinist to serve, Law commented,

"They are free to serve anywhere in our church. They can teach Sunday School, lead children's classes or even pursue pastoral ministry. We want Calvinists to know that they are welcome and accepted here, so that they may freely serve."

When asked if Law would marry a Calvinist couple in his church Law responded,

"Of course, if a Calvinist couple wants to marry, who am I to say that it's wrong."

19 October, 2007

KJV "Typo" Nullifies Pastoral Calling, Perhaps More

Woodsville, Washington - Pastor William Herliksen is finding himself in a bit of a "faith crisis" these days. Herliksen, who has pastored Bible Believers Baptist Church for the past twelve years has made two things the primary focus of his ministry.

"We do two things here at BBBC" said Herliksen. "We lift up the King James Bible above all, and we follow only what Paul teaches."

Under Herliksen's leadership the church has adopted a KJV-only position that even some who advocate only using the King James Bible find "radical." Some of those views taken directly form BBBC's statement of faith include,

  • One cannot be saved with any other version of the Bible other than the King James
  • All translations into other languages must be made from the King James Bible
But lately Herliksen has had to come face-to-face with his own words. Last week, as Herliksen was on vacation with his wife he woke up one morning to read his Bible. Realizing he had left his Bible in his bedroom and not wanting to wake up his wife, he decided to pick up her Bible and read. He began reading in Romans chapter 13, and was only 10 verses into the chapter when he noticed something strange. The passage in his wife's Bible read, "Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law." The problem lay with the word "neighbour" which Herliksen immediately noticed was spelled differently than he had been used to in his Bible.

"I became instantly concerned" stated Herliksen. "I was almost certain that my Bible spelled the word 'neighbor.'"

Herliksen pondered the problem for some time and waited until his wife woke up to retrieve his Bible.

"As soon as I walked in the living room Bill just shot up off of the couch and tore into the bedroom" said wife Lillian. "No 'good morning' or anything."

Upon retrieving his Bible Herliksen's "worst fears" were confirmed. In his Bible, the Bible that he had used for over 30 years, it read "neighbor" and not "neighbour." Upon further investigation, Herliksen soon discovered that his own copy of the KJV was a misprint.

"I was devastated" said Herliksen. "That was the Bible I was reading when I supposedly got saved. That's the Bible I've preached from for over 30 years."

The crisis for Herliksen now is this; because of the typo his Bible cannot technically be called a real "King James Bible" thus nullifying all of his ministry including preaching, teaching and personal reading. But more frightening to Herliksen than anything else is the possibility that he has missed salvation altogether because of the mistake.

"This means that the Bible I was reading when I got saved was not really a King James Bible. I'm probably not even saved. This means that the Bible I have been preaching from to people all of these years has not really been a King James Bible, and that means all of those people who have walked the aisle are not really saved either. I've spent the past 30 years using a Satanic translation."

Since making the discovery Herliksen has resigned his position as pastor of BBBC.

"I don't know what I'm going to do now" stated Herliksen. "I'm still going to the church each week, but I just don't know if I can be forgiven of this sin. I've gotten another Bible, but I'm so scared that there might be another typo in it. My eternal destiny rests upon me actually reading the exactly right and perfect translation. How can I know that I have that? How can I be certain?"

17 October, 2007

Revival Ends Before Session Can Approve It

Larsonville, New Mexico - Over two years ago in the small town of Larsonville something happened that people still call "a special time." It all started one February Sunday morning during regular services at Trinity Presbyterian Church. The pastor, Rev. Colbert Dunnigan, preached the sermon that morning, and went significantly over time with no one seeming to mind.

"I remember it like it was yesterday" said member Patrick Larkin. "When Colbert was preaching that Sunday morning it was as if the floodgates of heaven had opened up. He just kept preaching and people weren't minding. We stayed close to three hours that day. After the service people were staying around and talking. People were getting convicted about sin and were repenting. It was a marvelous time."

In the weeks that followed more and more people began coming to the services at Trinity. Members began holding home Bible studies. Two deacons even claimed that they had just become Christians. In all, the church's attendance increased from an average Sunday morning crowd of 200 to over 600 persons. From that first Sunday in February until mid-July the church recorded over 90 adult baptisms.

All seemed to be going well until one Sunday morning when Dunnigan made a bold statement from the pulpit.

"That Sunday morning I said to the congregation 'we are having a true revival here' " said Dunnigan. "After the service I was approached by three of my elders who wanted to talk with me. One of them said to me 'Colbert, you were out of line with that statement. ' "

The elder went on to say that Dunnigan was premature in making such a remark as it had not been properly discerned as to whether a true revival was taking place or not. Dunnigan tried to persuade the elders but the conversation was postponed until the regular Session meeting on the third Tuesday of the month.

"I had made that statement in July, and after our conversation it was stated that the issue would be discussed at the next Session meeting" stated Dunnigan. "We had already had our meeting though for July so it had to be postponed until August. But the session normally doesn't meet in August with school starting back and vacations and everything. So we didn't meet until September."

The Session did finally meet in September and the issue was deferred to the Worship Committee.

"We decided that the issue of whether or not to say we were having a revival should be handled by the Worship Committee" said Elder Carl Gromlin. "So we would wait for their decision on the issue and then discuss it further."

Unfortunately though, the Worship Committee did not meet during the month of October, so the issue was still not settled by the time of the November Session meeting. The committee did however meet the last week of November.

"When the Worship Committee met we decided that this was too important of an issue for us alone to figure out, so we decided to form a Committee on Revival to study what was going on" said Elder Rodger Wheims, head of the Worship Committee. "We submitted the names of the people we thought would best work on the committee back to the Session."

As usual, the session did not meet for the month of December, so the issue was taken up during their regular meeting in January of 2006. During that meeting there were some questions concerning several people chosen to be on the Committee on Revival, so the issue was referred back to the Worship Committee with the proposed changes. In February the Worship Committee made the proposed changes and resubmitted them back to the session for approval in March. During the Session's March meeting the list was approved. The Committee on Revival met for the first time in April, and decided that the issue would be studied for a period of three months.

The Committee on Revival reconvened in July of 2006 and ratified a report stating that they believed that a "real revival was taking place." By this time though, the church's Sunday attendance had dropped to almost 350, and many of the Bible studies had stopped meeting. The report was sent to the Session for approval, but the Session, as usual, did not meet for the month of August. The issue was brought up during the September meeting but was tabled due to 'more pressing issues.' The Session then took up the issue again in October, but several of the elders questioned some of the research done by the Committee on Revival. The proposal was sent back for clarification. The Committee on Revival did not meet in November, and the Session, of course, did not meet in December, so the issue was not reevaluated by the Committee on Revival until January of 2007.

In January of 2007 the committee decided to restudy the issue for another three months. The group then met again in May of 2007 and "further clarified" the issues regarding the alleged revival. The proposal was sent to the Session for approval. During their June meeting the Session officially approved that the church was indeed "having a revival" and began discussing dates to make it public to the congregation.

"We didn't want to be to hasty about this" said Wheims. "We decided that we were going to have a 'Revival Sunday' to celebrate the events.

The Session decided to postpone the declaration of a date until their July meeting. During their July meeting they set a date of Sunday, September 30 as 'Revival Sunday.' It was then that Dunnigan could officially announce to the congregation that the church was in the midst of a revival.

And so, on Sunday, September 30 Dunnigan stood before his congregation of 125 and announced "Well, we're having a revival."

It is now October at Trinity Presbyterian and all but one or two of the home Bible studies have ended. The congregation groans when Dunnigan now goes past noon with his sermons, and attendance is at an all time low.

"We are really praying that a real revival will come some day" said Gromlin. "We're ready for it whenever it might come, and when it does we'll be there to support it and pray for its continuance."

15 October, 2007

New Study Reveals Good Looks = Bad Theology

St. Petersburg, Russia - A recent study conducted by the TBNN research group revealed a possible connection between looks and theology. The survey was conducted over the course of three months during which time 2,000 people were shown pictures of various religious and theological figures and were asked to rate the individuals' beauty on a scale of one to ten. In the end 80% of those who held to poor theological perspectives were considered to be on the "attractive" or "good looking" side while 76% of those who held to sound evangelical theology were considered "unattractive" or "not pleasing to the eye."

A total list of 100 theological/religious figures was used with 50 being from the "bad theology" camp and 50 from the "good theology" camp. S ome of the more popular figures in question from the "bad theology" camp included Joel Osteen, Creflo Dollar, and Rod Parsley.

"Our research brought some very interesting results" said Brother Slawson who assisted in the research. "At the top of the list were Osteen and Parsley, with Osteen taking a slight advantage over Parsley. I think it was the teeth that won it for Osteen though. So many people would tell us, 'Oh, what a lovely smile!' For many people Parsley seems to have more of a Hollywood appeal, almost a suave 'tough guy' appearance. Amongst the older crowds, Robert Schuller and Bishop Spong won hearts."

In the end the top five rated persons for the "Bad Theology" group were as follows;

Joel Osteen - 9.87
Rod Parsley - 9.25
Creflo Dollar - 8.90
Gene Robinson - 8.25
Benny Hinn - 8.20

Under the category of "Good Theology" though, things looked significantly different.

"We were shocked when we began to show people photos and pictures of good theologians" stated Slawson. "Very few rated over five."

A sampling of the ratings from the "Good Theology" category clearly showed that with improved theology often comes less attractive looks.

George Whitfield - 4.97
C.H. Spurgeon - 4.23
Martin Luther - 4.15
John Owen - 3.99
Jonathan Edwards - 3.98

"When it was all said and done the evidence was pretty overwhelming" said Slawson. "The better one's looks the worse his or her theology will be, and the less attractive one is the better his or her theology will be. We are now trying to figure out a possible reason for this. One theory is that perhaps those with good theology are so occupied with studying God's Word that they don't have time to visit hair salons and beauty parlors and such."

There were exceptions on both sides. Under the "Bad Theology" category, Charles Finney scored only a 0.76, while under the "Good Theology" category J. Ligon Duncan III managed to score a 9.11.

"Of course there are exceptions, that's always the case" stated Slawson. "But the paradigm seems pretty consistent. If you're visiting churches out there, or are perhaps unhappy with your current church situation I'd take a look at your pastor. If he's a handsome guy, I'd be careful."

12 October, 2007

Split Personality Pastor Has "Emerging Conversation" with Himself

Newark, New Jersey - The "followers of Jesus" of "The Pub" are deeply concerned about their teacher, Peter Trout. Trout, affectionately known as "Trouty," founded "The Pub" seven years ago when he and a group of friends began meeting at Brantly's Pub in downtown Newark on Friday nights for discussions about life, love and the Bible. They were small at first, with just seven or eight people coming, but within a years time the group had grown to twenty, and then to fifty. Two years later Brantly's Pub closed, and the group took the initiative to buy the building. By that time, Trout had become the de facto leader of the group, having completed three years of college, studied Yoga for several years, and having backpacked Europe for two summers in a row. And so Trout and his group simply renamed the building "The Pub" and continued meeting on Friday nights for several hours, with the only difference being that now the meetings were B.Y.O.B. (bring your own beer).

All seemed to be going well for the group. The Pub's "followers of Jesus" had grown to almost 200, and the "family" had finally managed to acquire a liquor license so that they could serve first timers who didn't have anything to drink. But during the last Friday meeting in July, something happened that now has The Pub's "followers" worried that their favorite hangout spot along with their cherished leader is going to fall apart.

The trouble began the night of July 27th. The Pub had booked the group Allison Chains, a 90's grunge/alternative cover band to play for their evening "hang out time." The group played for almost two hours and then Trout stood up to speak. It was then that, "members" say, he just "lost it."

"I don't know what happened with the man" said one 'member' who simply calls himself 'The Parable.' "Trouty got up and started talking all this weird stuff about being obedient to the Bible and actually basing everything we believe on it. He then went into some tirade about our mouths reflecting what's in our heart. Everyone was just standing around really bummed out. I didn't know if I was hearing things right, I mean, I had had about 4 pints by that time, so maybe I just was confused, or maybe I just was confused, or confused or something, like something."

Trout spoke for almost a solid hour, during which time he cited numerous commentaries and quoted the Puritans. After he finished he stepped off of the stage for about thirty seconds only to return a with a completely different demeanor.

"When Trouty got done everyone was totally in shock" said Heather Lilly. "But then he got back on the stage and started going into this impassioned plea for people to keep an open mind and not to set fixed standards. He shouted, slamming on the Puritans and was cussing them out. That was the Trouty we all knew and loved."

When members of the congregation approached Trout after the service he responded totally dumbfounded to what they were talking about.

"I ask Trouty if everything he had said was some kind of joke or something and he said 'like what are you talking about man?' " Said The Parable. "It was like he didn't even know what had happened."

Ever since that fateful Friday night at The Pub, the "followers" have watched on a weekly basis as Trout has seemed to have developed a two-for-one personality, constantly having an "emerging conversation" with himself.

"We're all so worried about Trouty" said Lilly. "The other day I called him up and one minute he's cussing himself out, and the next minute he's preaching to himself about the need for sound Biblical doctrine. I just don't know what we're going to do. We all love Trouty so much, and we'd hate to see him turn orthodox or something."

Several of the "followers of Jesus" at The Pub have recently come together in an effort to approach Trout to help him. But the "followers" are uncertain of what lies ahead.

"When we go to talk to him, we don't know which Trouty we're going to get" said The Parable. "It's all going to depend on which one of him is talking during his inner conversation. Our hope is to interrupt that conversation at just the right time."

10 October, 2007

Try New "Up Yonder" Rolls Today!

Nothing completes a holiday meal with family and friends like fresh hot yeast rolls. For over 50 years now Up Yonder rolls have been a part of family holiday traditions everywhere. Only the finest ingredients go into our pre-made frozen yeast rolls. All you have to do is pop them in the oven and in just 20 minutes you'll enjoy that warm fresh homemade flavor like grandma used to make, but in just a fraction of the time.

And now, just in time for the holiday season, try our new flavors of Up Yonder rolls. There's Festive Pumkin, Apple Cinnamon Spice and Honey Butter.

Warm your family's appetite while you warm your hearts around the dinner table. Try Up Yonder rolls today and your family will be sure to say, "When the roll is called 'Up Yonder' I'll be there!"

08 October, 2007

Family Disheartened After Watching Baptism Film

Newport News, Virginia - Recently the Chalmers family of Newport News mourned the death of the man they all called "Papaw." Papaw, whose real name was Douglas Chalmers, died three months ago at the age of 82 after a year-long battle with cancer. While the family was saddened about losing Papaw, they were confident about Papaw's eternal destination, that is until a recent film made them question that confidence.

The trouble began over the weekend when the family gathered together to celebrate what would have been Papaw's 83rd birthday on Saturday. Richard Chalmers, Papaw's son had managed to obtain a copy of a film showing Papaw's baptism at the Newport News Church of Christ over 40 years ago. It was what the family saw in the film that now has them scarred that Papaw may not have made it to the Pearly Gates.

"I had found the film in Papaw's cedar chest after he passed away" said Richard Chalmers. "I was able to find a machine and watch it. I then paid a guy to have it transferred to DVD so that we could always have it. I naturally decided to bring it to the celebration this past weekend for everyone to see."

The family watched with smiles on their faces, until daughter Cortney Contrell noticed something strange.

"Courtney said 'Did y'all see that? His right big toe didn't go all the way under!'" said Richard Chalmers. "We ran the movie back several times and watched it over and over again, and we all saw the same thing. As Papaw was being dunked in the tub of water, his right foot came up and his big toe came out of the water about an inch, which means that he was never properly baptized."

While such an issue might seem insignificant to some, to the Chalmers family it's an matter of eternal importance.

"In our branch of the Church of Christ we believe that baptism saves you" said Thomas Chalmers, the eldest son. "If you're not properly baptized, if you don't get completely immersed then your not really saved. You've got to get all the way under that water or you just won't make it to heaven. We're all scared now, because as far as we know that's the only baptism that Papaw ever had."

The family is disparately searching records to find if Papaw was ever baptized again over the course of his life. But they they fear that all of their searches will turn up empty.

"We're bracing ourselves for the worst, but we're not giving up hope yet" said Thomas Chalmers. "Papaw really loved to fish, and on a number of occasions he went with his pastor buddies. Perhaps on one of those trips he may have been re-baptized and we just don't know about it. We're currently trying to track down all of our old ministers through the years to see if they know anything."

The incident has since prompted the entire family to get re-baptized over the weekend.

"We're not taking any chances" stated daughter Elizabeth. "How terrible it would be to have to suffer in hell for all eternity because of a toe."