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Apologetics and the “IF:Gathering” with Cedric Fisher (part two)

Berean Call Radio

Tom: We’re in part two of my discussion with Cedric Fisher. He writes for Lighthouse Trails Publishers, and his apologetics website is truthkeepers.com. Last week we opened up with just talking about apologetics and how important it is, and this week what I’d like to do is talk about one of his booklets, the title of it being IF It Is of God: Answering the Questions of IF: Gathering. So, Cedric, thanks for coming back that we can discuss these things on Search the Scriptures 24/7.

Cedric: And thank you for having me on the program, Tom.

Tom: Cedric, as I mentioned, we are co-publishing some of these booklets from Lighthouse Trails, and they’ve just been wonderful, and certainly the book that I read, the first one that I read by you, the title of it is IF It Is of God: Answering the Questions of IF: Gathering. And the topic was something I wasn’t familiar with, but I found it – reading your booklet, I found it very informative. What I’d like you to do is give us just some background. Why did you address this book? And just give us some background as to what this is about.

Cedric: Well, the IF: Gathering is a – I’d consider it a movement, founded by Jennie Allen, that basically operates from outside of the local churches. I would call it a parachurch organization. They form little local fellowships that they call IF:Table, and they are able to go inside of the church and get some converts or get some adherents from the church, and they indoctrinate them with whatever IF is producing. And that happened in our local area, in our area with one of our local fellowships, and somebody that was dear to me. And as soon as I heard what was being said, the alarms just went off, and I thought, “That’s not right.” And so I began to research it and the more I researched it, the more I realized this was not a healthy movement, not something that I would advise anybody, any woman, to get involved with. It’s a woman’s movement, but I wouldn’t advise any woman to get involved with this movement.

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APOLOGETICS AND THE “IF: GATHERING” WITH CEDRIC FISHER (PART ONE)

Berean Call Radio 

Tom: Today I’ll be talking with Cedric Fisher. He writes for Lighthouse Trails Publishers, and his apologetics website is truthkeepers.com. Now, today and next week, the Lord willing, we’ll be discussing two of his booklets that we co-publish with Lighthouse Trails.

Cedric, thanks for joining me on Search the Scriptures 24/7.

Cedric: Thank you for inviting me.

Tom: Now, before we get to our topic for the first part of our discussion, Cedric, I’d like you to tell us what motivated you to get into apologetics. For our listeners that aren’t familiar with that term (they probably are), it’s really just the defense of the Christian faith. So what motivated you?

Cedric: Well, first I’d like to make it clear I’m not a trained apologist but just a guy who began defending God’s truth several decades ago. I think it began after I had several debates with friends who had gotten into the word of faith movement, and it just escalated from there when I kept running into people that would say things I knew didn’t agree with God’s Word. I think the John Ankerberg Showwas the main inspiration in my early years, and other ones that were defending the truth, and it was just an eye-opening experience for me when I first saw that, and I sat and watched, mesmerized by the way that they could handle all these very difficult and sometimes complex questions. And, of course, later on I read books – The Seduction of Christianity by one of your – maybe your main mentor and friend, Dave Hunt – and other things, until, really, I just felt like that’s what God wanted me to do, along with my pastoring, was to defend His truth.

And so about 1993, I put up a website, began to write articles, and then I really, really found out about debates! But I found out that you develop a confidence, you develop a deep peace in you, when you study God’s Word and you know what it means, you understand what it means, and you can apply it perfectly in the light of these heresies – in the dark of these heresies, actually – and help people to understand what the truth really is.

Tom: Yeah. That’s certainly – much of what you said is on our heart with what we do here at The Berean Call. But, Cedric, your experience as a pastor, why do you think – and maybe I’m missing the boat here – but why do you think that many churches are reluctant to get involved in apologetics? And especially those churches that would consider themselves to be Bible-based?

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If:Gathering Speaker Endorses LGBT

After writing the booklet about IF:Gatherings, I received numerous complaints and rebukes. My detractors had nothing but glowing praise for the IF conferences and their speakers. None of them appeared to understand why it is important that the IF speakers are influenced by notorious heretics. Perhaps that factor will come into focus now that a popular IF:Gathering speaker, Jen Hatmaker, has declared her support for LGBT “Christians”. [i] Continue reading

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