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Hip and Thigh: Smiting Theological Philistines with a Great Slaughter. Judges 15:8

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Where's Hank?

From the "You Gotta Be Kidding Me" files.

I would have been a bit dubious of this item until I truly saw it, but Hank Hanegraaff, you know, the Christian Research Institute president and daily Bible Answer Man host, was recently participating with a conference promoting Occupy Wall Street in all places, Tehran, Iran.

Details HERE and HERE

It's not entirely clear if he actually traveled to Iran for this conference or if he participated with a stateside panel discussion group in either DC or New York. When interviewed by a reporter he was quoted as saying,

“The reason that Occupy Wall Street is continuing to go on is because people are protesting the policies of the American government.” He added, “Spontaneous activism which is organized by social media will always have a huge opportunity to make large economic and societal changes. Just like it did in Egypt with Tahrir Square, so it will, in various permutations or forms, continue to give the public that doesn’t necessarily have economic and social standing an opportunity to make a difference, because in the land of the Internet, there are no kings or queens.”


Let this all soak in a second.

Participating with a conference about Occupy Wall Street that was in Tehran, Iran.

Let's see. Iran. You know, the homicidal government that whips women for showing their arms in public and executes them for being raped; Oh, and they like killing Christians.

And Occupy Wall Street. The anti-Semitic, Neo-Marxists whose core army is made up of potheads, bums, and hippies who smell of urine.

Along with Hank, there were a large assortment of crazy people who believe America is the 1% and is to be blamed for pretty much all the ills in the world because - wait for it -

Americans support Zionism. Spell it out with me. IT'S THE J-E-W-S. Da Jooooos.

I stand with my mouth open in stunned disbelief. Has Hank's anti-Dispensationalism brought him to becoming a leftist crackpot? Seriously. What do all of the other so-called Evangelical apologists who contribute to his journal and website, like Holly Ordway, Jay Richards, Mary Jo Sharp, along with a host of others think about Hank's extra-curricular activities as a pro-Marxist, anti-Semitic useful idiot for the government of Iran? Does it matter to them? Or is it just Hank being Hank? It's one of those matters we can debate vigorously like Hank's says.

It's just grievous to see what was once an outstanding Christian ministry having it's reputation ruined and driven off the tracks by such narcissistic incompetence.

Labels:

25 Comments:

Blogger Ron (aka RealityCheck) said...

If there was such a thing as “turning over is ones grave”, Walter Martin would be “spinning” like a top!

Watching the decline of "The Bible Answer Man" would be entertaining if it wasn't for the fact that he still, somehow, has a following.

8:47 AM, April 24, 2012  
Blogger Fra'vangelico said...

Wow -- when I first read this, I thought it was one of our pieces.

9:24 AM, April 24, 2012  
Blogger Mike Westfall said...

Seems like Hank Hanegraaf has been somewhat controversial ever since Walter MArtin passed away and he took over the CRI.

9:46 AM, April 24, 2012  
Blogger Rhology said...

Since Hank can't embezzle funds from CRI donations anymore, perhaps he was hard up for cash to pay for his Lexus and his kids' computers and thus appeared before this gathering.

12:38 PM, April 24, 2012  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

That and the fact that he can't get away with lying about stolen mail that was really just misdelivered.

12:50 PM, April 24, 2012  
Blogger Bill Honsberger said...

My cynical self says with Hank one should ALWAYS follow the money
It wouldn't be his first compromise - read online about CRI's turnabout on the Witness Lee Cult.
CRI's radio show had turned into a begathon for many years before I finally turned it off. How can a ministry which is in debt afford a trip to Iran for a conference? Or perhaps (read guaranteed) the Iranians paid for his appearance. File this under the "useful idiots" file.
The level of anti-semitism of Occupy Wall Street and those other professors there in Teheran was already an issue on the political blogs this past week. Hanegraaf joining with them is truly a horrific moment for the Kingdom of God.
It is not guilt by association to say you are a "Brown Shirter", if in fact you are wearing the Nazi colors and hanging around in Beer gardens.
I used to buy the CRI Journal all the time. Then when CRI got owned by the Local Church I dropped my subscription and only bought it when an article by a friend was published. I will never buy the magazine again and I will encourage my audience, such as it is, to drop any support they have for CRI. This is a line one cannot cross.
Bill Honsberger

12:51 PM, April 24, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

Fred,
I agree with you that this looks bad on Hank H. – especially if he went to Iran (wow); and it indeed looks bad that he spoke at some kind of Occupy Wall Street gathering. They are mostly exactly what you have written. Leftists, Liberals, communists, anarchists, and spoiled College students, etc.

Glad you pointed out that it is not entirely clear that he went to Iran. I noticed that also. Anyway, given the numerous scandals, and accusations against Hank and CRI, it does look bad. And it is very sad, because those powerful TV word of faith heretics can use these scandals and associations to discredit the good that HH has done with exposing the Word of faith movement heresies and the “Counterfeit Revival” stuff.

However, there is another family member of Walter Martin who has a web-site that defends HH and backs it up with lots of evidence. Maybe we are judging those "scandals" without all the info. I don't know. Just saying.

http://www.waltermartinjude3.com/

In your comment at the Atlas Shrugged site, you called Hank a "preterist", but it would be more accurate to say, "Partial Preterist" (along with Gary DeMar and Ken Gentry).

Another problem is that most Dispensationalists call anyone who sees the new covenant as fulfilling the old covenant – including the land promises - that the land promises were also fulfilled - Hebrews 11-12 - a "replacement theologian" or imply that is "Anti-semitism".

You wrote:
Americans support Zionism. Spell it out with me. IT'S THE J-E-W-S. Da Jooooos.

I don't think that is worthy of you and it is not accurate. Zionism is not equal to the Jews. They are not equal. Many religious Jews and even Rabbis think it was wrong for the Atheist / Secular/ unbelieving/liberal Jews, along with the United Nations to force the founding of Israel in 1948.

Don't get me wrong, obviously God allowed in His providence; and I think it was right for justice and the historic tie that Jews had to the land before 135 and 70 AD since Joshua and the promise to Abraham; (and since the Ottoman Empire was dismantled, and many Jews bought much of the land from rich Arab land owners - then they had the right to built their own country, yes). And then they have been wrongly attacked by the Arabs since that time; and the PLO was corrupt and they and Hamas are evil for their view that they don't think Israel should even exist at all. Even though Arafat says he changed his view on their right to exist, it was always hard to believe him or others because of other cases of being caught in lies. The PLO and Hamas are clearly wrong.

But questioning whether 1948 is a fulfillment of prophesy or being an Amillennialism, or Postmillennialist, or questioning if 1948 is a beginning of the fulfillment of the land promises that will come later in the Millennium - those things are not and should not be equated with Anti-semitism or hatred against the Jewish people.

2:42 PM, April 24, 2012  
Blogger APK said...

Hank did travel to Tehran.

It is listed in his updated bio.

http://www.equip.org/site/about_hank_hanegraaff

It is also posted on his twitter page and facebook page. He said all of the thing he heard about Iran in the west were false and the trip to Iran was one he would never forget. It is clear he went to Iran. PressTv is Iran's English language news service which is owned by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. Hank is a useful idiot at best and a charlatan at worst.

7:09 PM, April 24, 2012  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

It's like he has become something of a Hanoi Hank.

7:34 PM, April 24, 2012  
OpenID everyman2 said...

If you are having trouble believing that Hanegraaff is capable of this type of unchristian behavior (supporting cult groups, attending conferences in terrorist nations etc)then you need to read my book from 2009, "Hard Questions for The Bible Answer Man". In it I detail a life replete with lying, cheating and deception. This pattern dates back to his days at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in the 1980s (see my interview with D. James Kennedy in chapter 6).

It is very clear, this man has never belonged in Christian Ministry.

6:52 AM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

Ken writes,
Anyway, given the numerous scandals, and accusations against Hank and CRI, it does look bad

Yes, it is extremely disheartening to see the spiraling downfall of CRI's ministries. His audio version to his Christianity in Crisis stuff was outstanding and much needed at the time.

However, there is another family member of Walter Martin who has a web-site that defends HH and backs it up with lots of evidence..

Yes. I am familiar with the lady and the claims on the site. I will say my current position affords me a bit more access to privy information and I can tell you that the scandal involving his use of CRI funds to pay for high-end vehicles and the "lost mail hoax" he perpetrated a number of years ago is true.

That said, even if there were no scandals, he has done enough with discrediting CRI. The mass telemarketing blitzes and his accommodation of theological error, especially his recent embrace of the Watchman Nee cult, are extremely problematic. Now he has this thing where he claims Iran is being maligned by Western media. Yet any basic research on persecution websites, even Amnesty Int., will tell you he was snowed when he went to Iran.

moving along,
... you called Hank a "preterist", but it would be more accurate to say, "Partial Preterist".

I didn't think I would need to be so nit-picky as to clarify the partial crowd from the hyper variety. Pretty much all the preterists I know just call themselves preterists.

Another problem is that most Dispensationalists call anyone who sees the new covenant as fulfilling the old covenant – including the land promises - that the land promises were also fulfilled - Hebrews 11-12 - a "replacement theologian" or imply that is "Anti-semitism".

I'd encourage you to pick up Barry Horner's book on this subject. I have written a good deal on this as well (you've commented on some of the posts), and will have an article going up tomorrow addressing how the NC DOES NOT nullify the land promises. Most young Reformed bloggers these days seem to have an historical detachment from their views and as a result, they are worked up over the "replacement" terminology. But it is entirely acceptable and not to be meant as derogatory. Even Steve Leher, a NCT guy, says his view is a "replacement." No one is implying Reformers are anti-Semitic, but Reformed theology has a history of anti-Semitism. It's just a fact of history.

Zionism is not equal to the Jews. They are not equal.

Of course they are. To suggest otherwise is dishonest with the facts. Zionism is the return of Jews to their recognized state. How it came about is irrelevant. The land of Israel has always been where the Jews originated. However one wants to force the exegesis of the OT to say differently doesn't change this fact. If a person opposes Zionism, they are opposing Jews, regardless of their beliefs, secular or religious, and their ability to create a national state.

7:16 AM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

Everyman2 - Jay -
Thanks for the comments and I looked at your blog.

I was dis-heartened when I first heard of the accusations that Jill Rische (Walter Martin's daughter) was bringing against HH.
(around 1998 - 2000 ?) It made me sick and I stopped listening to the BAM and I have not very often since that time.

Your blog along with the other accusations is mounting to where the defense that HH makes "doesn't pass the smell test". But, I have not had time to read every detail, and there is a lot at the other Martin daughter's site - lots of details about Brad Sparks, etc. - too much to digest for now.

Overall, this is a very sad and grievous scandal; because I appreciated his strong stand against the "Name it claim it" prosperity heresies and "Counterfeit Revival" and most of the CRI Journal has lots of good information in it over the years. I don't know much about the "Local Church" - my understanding was that Watchman Nee was orthodox, but Witness Lee was not. (Maybe I am wrong on that.)

I confess the whole thing is very depressing.

8:18 AM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

Zionism is not equal to the Jews. They are not equal.

Of course they are.

Many Jews do not go back to the land - many religious Rabbis believe it was wrong for humans to "take matters into their own hands" - the secular atheist Jews who were bitter over the centuries of oppression in Europe and Russia and the Holocaust. One of the great reasons for current Jewish secularism and unbelief in God and that Moses really was a prophet and did miracles, etc. is because many Jewish people are bitter over God allowing the Holocaust.

I don't see how you can equate the two equally.

The gospel is that Jewish people need the Messiah for their sins and repentance and faith in Him - the land has no relation to the gospel. Galatians 4:26
all the promises of the old covenant were fulfilled in Christ - Galatians 3:16.

8:51 AM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

To suggest otherwise is dishonest with the facts. Zionism is the return of Jews to their recognized state. How it came about is irrelevant. The land of Israel has always been where the Jews originated. However one wants to force the exegesis of the OT to say differently doesn't change this fact. If a person opposes Zionism, they are opposing Jews, regardless of their beliefs, secular or religious, and their ability to create a national state.

That just does not make sense to me. It is clear that God Himself expelled them from the land - 70 AD - destruction of the temple - Matthew 23:36-39; 24:1-3, 135 AD (Bar Kokhba Rebellion)

In light of Psalm 87 and "God registering the peoples" from many of the enemies of Israel as "being born in her, meaning Zion - and that Galatians 4:26 by calling the Jerusalem above as our mother - is the NT interpretation of that and allusion to that; and Hebrews chapters 11 and 12 -

Hebrews 11:10 For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.

Hebrews 11:16
Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

Hebrews 12:22-24
22 But you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, 23 to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the Judge of all, to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, 24 to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.

These, and other passages, seem to demonstrate the land promises were fulfilled in Christ, and that they are no more.

Biblical Zionism is based on Psalm 87, Galatians 4:26, Ephesians 2:11-22 (Gentiles coming into the commonwealth of Israel, being accepted, etc.); and those Hebrews passages.

Secular Zionism was the modern 1880s to 1948 movement. It was good, and just as a social justice issue because of the centuries of evil done against them, especially the Holocaust, etc. and it is understandable.

But, I am not sure it is a fulfillment of prophesy, etc. since most of the Jewish people there still do not believe in the Messiah.

8:55 AM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

moving along,
... you called Hank a "preterist", but it would be more accurate to say, "Partial Preterist".

I didn't think I would need to be so nit-picky as to clarify the partial crowd from the hyper variety. Pretty much all the preterists I know just call themselves preterists.

I disagree; for it is the difference between orthodoxy and heresy. It is very important for those criticizing the position to make that distinction. I do so all the time, because full Preterism is a heresy. It is not being "nit-picky" at all - it is very important to be accurate in our apologetics and critiques as Christians.

9:01 AM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

Ken Writes,
I don't see how you can equate the two equally.

Because "Zionism" is solely a Jewish phenomenon. It is an OT term, for goodness sake. In other words, it is primarily Jews who travel to Israel and relocate there as their national identity. I think the only possible reason why Israel is in unbelief and hostile to the Gospel (and God) is because what the Bible teaches in Romans 11:25ff.

The gospel is that Jewish people need the Messiah for their sins and repentance and faith in Him - the land has no relation to the gospel. Galatians 4:26
all the promises of the old covenant were fulfilled in Christ - Galatians 3:16.


Okay. I agree with that. How exactly does Galatians 3:16 nullify the land promises that are yet to be fulfilled according to a number of OT prophecies including Ezekiel 36 and 37?

In response to your other comments, I have plans to write on those subjects here soon. I have a post coming tomorrow on the promise of the NC and the restoration of the Jews to the land and then after it, in the weeks to come, I will address specific "passages" appealed to as a means to claim all the land promises are fulfilled.

As to the preterist term. I understand your desire to be concise, but full preterism is such a fringe version of the garden variety preterism that it is only necessary to distinguish one's self from them in certain circumstances, usually in narrow discussions. I'm a Calvinist. I call myself a Calvinist and I never feel the need to clarify with folks about hyper-Calvinism.

9:48 AM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger APK said...

Zionism is the movement for Jewish self-determination. It is Jewish nationalism. If someone rants only about this national movement to the exclusion of other natonal movements, I would say the person is anti semitic.

Its funny how Hank rails against Israel for displacement of Palestinians, but he paints Iran in roses. Look at the numbers of Assyrians and Armenians in Iran pre 1979 and post 1979.

11:35 AM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

Fred,
Just wanted you to know I am enjoying your I Samuel series. God bless you brother!
Ken T.

12:57 PM, April 25, 2012  
Blogger Ron (aka RealityCheck) said...

More food for thought on Hank:

http://www.thejerusalemconnection.us/blog/2011/07/07/a-goliath-in-the-church.html

http://lightingtheway.blogspot.com/2008/04/hank-hanegraaffs-replacement-theology.html

http://www.pre-trib.org/articles/view/neo-replacement-theology

8:22 PM, April 25, 2012  
OpenID everyman2 said...

To understand why Hanegraaff had to go to the Iranian conference it helps to understand the man. After researching him from 1999-2009 I felt I have a sense of what drives him. He mentioned to Ron Rhodes in a interview, for a CRI publication, shortly after his takeover of CRI, before he became a Christian in 1979 he wanted to be rich so that people would notice him. It has become all to apparent that the need is still with him. By extension he loved to hob-nob with important Christian leaders (D. James Kennedy, Walter Martin, Norman Geisler, Chuck Smith etc).

Now I submit to you that when he was invited to the Iranian confernce it was more than his psychy could handle. His need to feel important and to be taken seriously plus his overpowering need to be around important people were all satiated at once. So what many people at the conference were international terrorists? The most important thing was they were important terrorists!

7:24 AM, April 26, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

Hi Fred,
You asked about Ezekiel 36-37. I needed time to carve out something that might have substance to it, rather than just spouting off the top of my head.

Okay. I agree with that. How exactly does Galatians 3:16 nullify the land promises that are yet to be fulfilled according to a number of OT prophecies including Ezekiel 36 and 37?

I am not dogmatic about how to understand Ezekiel 37 and 38-48 either, but it seems to me that:

1. Remember Ezekiel is writing to the exiles in Babylon and he says in chapter 36, that God will vindicate His holy name in the sight of the nations - and it seems He did by punishing Babylon and the He did bring them back to the land by moving Cyrus, King of Persia, to let them go back (539 - 536 BC) and that was the fulfillment of Ezekiel 36:24 and ff .

2. Since Ezekiel 36:26-27 seems to be what Jesus is referring to in John 3:1-10, then it seems the return to the land was fulfilled in 536-539 BC and onward and that God was cleansing the land and people of idols and then Jesus came on the scene and taught John 3:1-10, referring back to Ez. 36:26-27.

3. I admit that I have not studied the issue of the "10 lost tribes of the N. Kingdom" and how that whole issue fits into the specific unification of Israel and Judah in chapter 37. That seems to be where the Dispensationalist would say that 37 was not fulfilled in 539-536 BC since only Judah returned from Exile.

4. Anyway, Gary DeMar makes a good case for seeing Ezekiel 38 and the wars there as fulfilled in Esther's day - the peoples in the Persian Empire - Haman's plot -and how the Jews all over the Perisan empire were allowed to defend themselves. In DeMar's book, End Times Fiction.

5. Even though it is true that there are lots of details in the Ezekiel temple vision in chapters 40-48, the verses that say that they are "an atonement" would seem to go against the whole book of Hebrews, if future to us.

6. Ezekiel calls them "visions of God" (40:2; cf. 1:1; 8:3; 11:24) - and how do we know the details of Herod's temple - was he attempting to fulfill that as far as dimensions, etc. go?

continued in the next post because of blogger limits

11:13 AM, April 28, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

continued regarding Ezekiel 36-37 and related issues.

7. the verses on the "glory of God returning" seem to be fulfilled in Jesus in John 1:14-18 - the word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth."

8. That is one of the biggest problems I have with the Dispensational / Pre-Millennial scheme - a rebuilt temple and atonement, even memorial sacrifices, etc. - just seems to go against so much in the NT, especially Hebrews, John 4:23-24.

But, I am not dogmatic and admit that it is hard to come down on one side or another, since it is all future and we don't know with certainty how these things will play out.

9. Hank Hannegraaf makes a good point here: ( I read it because you had linked to it earlier, but I see you now took that post down.)

"Christian Zionism supposes that the Jews are going to be herded back in the Holy Land where two-thirds will be killed. Christian Zionism is not only anti-Semitic with respect to the Palestinians, it is detrimental in that the Jews are going to suffer for the sins of their fore-fathers."

Both Jews and Arab Muslims (and Arabs who are Orthodox and Roman Catholic or liberal Protestant in the Levant) need the gospel – but the popularizing material of end-time scenarios that much of what Dispensationalism has fed; are what Muslims hear about and it looks to them like many Evangelicals are one sided and think like the heretic John Hagee, who seems to believe in a two-covenant scheme and has said things like “don’t bothering witnessing to the Jews”, etc. When the political land theology is put over the gospel itself, the result of that is that the nations blaspheme the Lord over that false teaching and giving a wrong impression of what true Christianity is.

Gary DeMar makes the same point many times in his two books,
Last Days Madness
End Times Fiction

I am not a theonomist - at all; but the Partial Preterism and analysis of Dispensationalism is impressive.

I am trying to read more of your material, as I have time, for your material and books you recommend are the best I have seen so far on these issues, and they have, in my opinion, replaced the old Ryrie, Pentecost, Walvoord, Hal Lindsay generation.

I was taught with Ryrie, Pentecost, and Walvoord and they influenced the popularizers - Hal Lindsay, Tim LaHaye, and John Hagee (heretic on other issues) and Jack Van Impe - those popularizers gave a negative over-all impression of Dispensationalism, Pre-Trib. and Pre- Mill stuff - that DeMar and Gentry and O. Palmer Robertson and Sproul's "Last Days According to Jesus", have helped to give a robust intellectual exegesis and careful historical analysis to balance out all the goofiness of most popular Pre-Trib. / Dispensational teaching.

But, I was very impressed with Mark Hitcock's presentation vs. Hank Hannegraaf in the debate over dating Revelation.

11:14 AM, April 28, 2012  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

Did you mean to put these under this post about Hank or my one on Israel's restoration? Just wondering.

I do plan to get to Ezekiel's Temple passage sometime. I'll take on Demar's wacky interpretation then.

Fred

1:07 PM, April 28, 2012  
Blogger Ken said...

I put it here because you asked about Ezekiel 36-37 earlier here.

8:06 PM, April 29, 2012  
Blogger Sir Aaron said...

I don't get it. A preterist shouldn't be pro Palestine. Any decent history lesson on modern Israel should make any rational person favor Israell, regardless of one's eschatological views.

7:16 PM, May 03, 2012  

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