March 23, 2006
Someone who knows everything and nothing else
negative evaluation in lesson 13 of the Basic Training Program is not a
requirement, but I always welcome constructive suggestions to improve the
training program. By constructive, Paul, I meant suggestions that would help
people in their sharing the Gospel. That kind of knowledge only comes through
time and experience on the field anyway and by that time, if faithful, you would
be writing your own training program if that was God's purpose for you.
Paul, I am always here for you and welcome continued
correspondence. Concerning the positive evaluation if you feel the need to do
something more with it, that is between you and the Lord, but I thought it was
okay as is. Through the positive evaluation you encourage other Christians about
the importance of training in evangelism and through it multiply your own life
in it in service to the Lord.
Paul, my comprehensive training program is the result of
years of keeping an open mind. I know you do not do this intentionally (it seems
to be a disease of all young people, LOL!) but often you come across critical
and absolute, you do not ask questions about things you think may be improper. I
spent the first ten years of my walk with Jesus going through several evangelism
training programs while doing evangelism on the field. I always kept an open
mind to the Lord and the Holy Spirit and so He was able to teach me and round
off my rough edges. In saying that I still stand before the Lord and say "Jesus,
I give all my education back to you. I know nothing, teach me." There are only
two things in this universe that are absolute: the Bible and Jesus. We all have
our presuppositions about things, but try to keep an open mind. It was having an
open mind that helped me understand the proper approach to issues like water
salvation through faith alone. At one point on
the field I was approached by many people who taught salvation through water
baptism or through receiving the Holy Spirit. While I was not convinced at the
time of their position, I did not write them off, I got on my knees and cried
out to God to open my eyes to His Word and what it truly teaches. The end result
was the Holy Spirit taking me through the Book of Acts, a book these camps
primarily use for their arguments, and showed me clearly how even Peter did not
agree with their assertions. When it appears to you that someone is in error
about a subject, don't attack them, ask questions: "Most Christians I know don't
believe this way, why do you hold this position?" Then take what they say to the
the Lord and ask Him to show you who is right and who is wrong. Ask the Lord to
do this, to lead you into His word. When we go to the word to find answers we
are only looking to support the positions we already hold. Only the Lord by His
Holy Spirit, if we keep an open mind and teachable spirit, can open our eyes to
our error or reaffirm our position in his word. This is what is meant by the
Bible being the sword of the Holy Spirit, not manís sword. I held at one time as
a young person to once saved always saved teaching and believed I had sufficient
reasons for believing so based on the Bible. However, a later crisis in my life
changed all that when the Holy Spirit forcibly showed me
Word why my thinking was wrong. That completely changed and
rearranged my thinking and theology. I in a sense had to start all over about my
thinking on these issues. It was after this that, while at the moment I held
certain views, I kept an open mind to the Lord to show me if I was wrong.
While I am absolute about the Bible being God's Word and
without error, I am not absolute about myself that I am absolute about what
God's word teaches on all subjects. I talk about this in the
Program about how a true knowledge of God's word is
than reading a book. I did an exhaustive study of the constitution of
man and developed a model from it years ago. However, the Holy Spirit later told
me "I want you to read a book on this subject." It was "The Spiritual Man" by
Watchman Nee. As I started reading it, it in many ways went against the then
model of the constitution of man I held. Several times I threw the book across
the room in protest, but God had commanded me to read it. As I continued reading
it and further examined God's word I came to realize my model was not quiet
right and made the necessary adjustments that were needed. Part of the
frustration for me at the time was I had just spent two years writing the first
edition of the Basic Textbook on Evangelism and was ready to publish it when the
Lord had me read this book by Watchman Nee. I was so thankful to the Lord
afterwards that I had not published the textbook because I would have been
embarrassed the rest of my life whenever the book would have been brought up by
someone. I had to completely rewrite the book and make the necessary adjustments
in my model to make it line up more clearly with God's word. You see you do not
come to a true knowledge of God's word through just studying it. That is were we
start. However, only the Holy Spirit can open our eyes to see the real truth
that is there.
1 Corinthians 1:21 "For since in the wisdom of God the
world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well pleased through
the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe."
2 Corinthians 4:3-4 "And even if our gospel is veiled,
it is veiled to those who are perishing, in whose case the god of this world has
blinded the minds of the unbelieving, that they might not see the light of the
gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God."
By the way that is why it is so important that all Christians
take time in their weeks to go out and share the Gospel with men and women.
Why? Because only a Christian has the Holy Spirit living in them.
Only a Christian by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit can see God's salvation
for man through Jesus Christ in the teaching of the Bible and clearly
communicate it to lost humanity. When an unregenerate person reads the
Bible all they see is the dos and don'ts of the Bible and the judgment of God.
Their dark heart and mind cannot discern its message of Salvation. That is
why Paul tells us in Romans 1:16-17,
"For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for
it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first
and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith
to faith as it is written, ĎBut the righteous man shall live by faith.í"
Only a person who has the Holy Spirit can communicate the
clear message of God's salvation through Jesus Christ in the Bible to an
Job had an intellectual knowledge about what he believed and
about what he believed about God. However, after his trial and God revealing
himself to him personally, Job then said in Job 42:5-6 "I have heard of You by
the hearing of the ear; but now my eye sees You; Therefore I retract, and I
repent in dust and ashes." By repenting he meant he adjusted his incorrect
thinking and theology about what he believed about God as a result of
encountering Him personally.
2 Corinthians 3:5-6 "Not that we are adequate in
ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is
from God, who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the
letter [the Word, the Law], but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the
Of course, a personal experience is never a higher authority
than the Bible itself. Jesus said in John 8:47 "He who is of God hears the words
of God." However, when we encounter the true living God it opens our eyes
to what the Bible is truly saying, not what we think it is saying. A true
understanding of Godís Word only comes through knowing God Himself.
John 1:16-17 "For of His fulness we have all received, and
grace for grace. For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth came into
being through Jesus Christ."
Jesus said in John 18:37 "For this I have
been born, and for this I have come into the world, to BEAR WITNESS TO THE
TRUTH. Everyone who is of the truth HEARS MY VOICE.í"
So it is a combination of study and spending time with and
encountering the true living God that leads us to a clearer understanding of the
truth. I say clearer because none of us on this side of heaven can ever be too
absolute about our own understanding. We must always remain open and teachable.
Only an expert knows everything and nothing else.
Paul, your only Achilles' heal I see is your critical
absolutist attitude. Please do not be offended, because we all were like this at
one time in our past, but I chuckle when I read your critical absolutist
statements because I think "Someone is influencing him in a negative
way." Paul, when I share the Gospel on the field, I am very absolutist in my
presentation of the Gospel. I share it unapologetically as truth because I
believe it to be the truth. However, at home and privately over the years I have
had to make adjustments about my absolute truth, LOL.
salvation tract has been rewritten and adjusted many times since it
was first written in 1989, more so than probably anything else I have written.
Nevertheless, when presenting the Gospel on the field you have to be
straightforward, not wishy washy. God only gives people a clear understanding of
the truth who obey Him (John 14:21). So yes whether perfect or not, God wants us
to go out and share the Gospel as we currently understand it even if imperfect.
However, in discussion with brothers and in your study of the word, if you want
to grow in a true knowledge of the Word and God, you have to always maintain an
open mind and teachable spirit that you may not be as absolute about what Godís
Word teaches as you think you are. I am not talking about compromise. One of the
reasons for my straightforward teaching on subjects is the result of watching
the compromises of mainstream Christianity not based on Godís Word, but on
trying to please everybody, so I am not talking about trying to please
everybody. There is always going to be someone out there who does not agree with
you. I seek only to please one person: Jesus. I am talking about an
open mind only in the sense that while Godís Word is absolute, none of us is
ever 100% absolute about what Godís word actually teaches.
1 John 1:8 "If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving
ourselves, and the truth is not in us."
1 John 1:10 "If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a
liar, and His word is not in us."
Ecclesiastes7:20 "Indeed, there is not a righteous man
on earth who continually does good and who never sins."
In that sense we must always keep an open mind for God to
open our eyes to see His absolute Word more clearly. I am attaching a letter
below I wrote recently to an Expert who is associated with a friend of mine who
always takes an intolerant absolutist position on subjects and therefore is not
open to hear anyone else's view point. You will find it helpful.
Your Friend in Jesus,
Dale P. Kruse
February 17, 2006
Re: Definition of an Expert
How are you? I have been praying about a matter for some time
regarding Sally and you. For the most part I have ignored it except in prayer,
but this morning the Lord asked me if I would write you a letter. First, may I
give you my definition of an expert:
"An expert is someone who knows everything and nothing else."
LOL! I was very thankful to the Lord for my Christian
University education at Oral Roberts University. Why? Because I think they are
the perfect Christian University and agree with everything they say, do and
teach? No. I remember the first time I heard that Oral Roberts had started
a Christian University. I turned on the TV to find the Merv Griffin show on and
that one of his guests for that day was Oral Roberts. I knew Oral Roberts was an
evangelist and that God used him primarily to bring Jesusí healing power to
people, but I was not aware until that day that he had also started and was
president of a Christian University called Oral Roberts University. I thought to
myself, "What is Oral Roberts doing in Education, he is an Evangelist?" I was in
the middle of a degree (75') at a junior college at the time in Electronic
Technology. A year later I was sitting in my room just having finished the last
chapter of the textbook which completed my education in this degree. As I did
the Lord flooded my room with His presence and He said to me,
"Well done good and faithful servant. Because you have been
faithful in little, I am going to put you in charge of much. You are an
Evangelist, Overseer, Teacher!"
Somehow in the process of completing this two year degree I
had managed to miss one class and so found myself taking one course that Spring
Semester to complete my degree. Along with my calling the Lord began to deal
with me about my needing to complete my studies in Biblical theology. I had
started in a Christian college in my hometown out of high school but my parents
wished me to get a two year degree in what they considered a practical field
first. I sought the Lord about it and He told me to honor them; thus how I ended
up going through a two year degree in electronic technology.
Jesus had called me to the ministry when I was 15 years old.
I did not know the Lord at the time. I was raised Catholic and thought he wanted
me to become a priest. I decided maybe I should read the Bible and so I did. I
read first through the New Testament. As a result I came to saving faith in
Jesus Christ and entered into a personal relationship with Him. As time went on
and as I continued to read the Bible, my religious convictions changed and
left the Catholic Church. This happened to me right out of high school. This is
a long story and not the intent of this letter, but a little bit of my
background to understand what came next.
I first went to a Christian Bible school in my hometown right
out of High School. However, after two semesters there I became very
disillusioned since they were teaching liberal theology and everything that
supposedly was wrong with the Bible. I decided I would do better to go to a
junior college to start with and complete my liberal arts since it was cheaper
and then seek a Bible college that had a higher respect for God's Word to complete my theological education
I was, would you believe, at this junior college for four
years (another story for another time :o) )? Every day I was on that
campus I went out and shared Christ with students. By the time my education was
completed their I was a seasoned Christian. I had encountered every kind of ism
and religion one could on that campus. The end result of that was it forced me
to go home each day and open my Bible and search for Godís answers to what I was
encountering. You see I did not develop my Biblical theology at Oral Roberts
University, I developed it while out sharing the Gospel on campus at Fresno City
Now at the end of Godís education in my life at Fresno City
College in obedience to God in honoring my parents, God now gives me His
specific spiritual calling and then deals with me that I now need to complete my
studies in Christian theology at a Christian school.
Because of the disillusioned experience I had had at the
first Christian Bible school I went to, I was not ready to just sign up
anywhere. I had had four years to think about what I believed and why and so I
wanted to go to a Christian college which best related to those convictions and
beliefs. The problem was where? I did my homework, looked into many different
schools, what they where about and stood for. Oral Roberts University was one of
those colleges. I did not know much about this University, but I was impressed
that they had a whole man philosophy about their approach to education: spirit,
soul and body. I was very much into aerobics in those days in exercise and Oral
Roberts University was the only Christian school which had adopted this into
their physical program. Would you believe that got my attention to them more
than anything else? I thought to myself "If they are this together here, what
will their Biblical theological education be like?"
This in itself did not decide my decision to go there per
say. I decided to go on a fast for a week and seek the Lordís will for me in
where He wanted me to attend Bible college. The end result of that fast was His
telling me specifically He wanted me to go to Oral Roberts University and
specifically what He wanted me to take.
The rest is history. I did attend Oral Roberts University and
did graduate from their in Church Ministry Pastoral studies along with a study
of the Biblical languages. As a result of my time at Oral Roberts University I
found many things about the school I had trouble with. I guess that would have
been true no matter where I might have attended Christian college, but the one
thing about Oral Roberts University I really appreciated was the fact that it
was an interdenominational Charismatic college. What does that mean? It means I
had theological professors who were Baptists, Assembly of God, Prespyterian,
Methodists and some other branches of Christianity. Each day I would go to class
and of course not only did these Professors teach the subject of the class but
also gave their particular brand of Christianityís view point on the subject.
The end result was instead of just being brainwashed to one view point, I got
several different view points on any one given subject. This forced me to dig
into the Bible all the more to try and determine which view was correct. I spent
many summers on my knees seeking the Lord about these many different subjects.
While many of these Professors held different convictions on
different Biblical issues, on salvation, water baptism, the work of the Holy
Spirit today, yet they could respect their differences of view point and even
would have open debates in the learning center for the benefit of the students
to listen to. You see I myself was a subject of debate within the theological
departments because of my theological teaching on Evangelism. Many of them did
not hold my view. My success with the students in training in Evangelism was
kind of a sore point with some of them because students who had attended there
for two years or more ended up taking my training course on evangelism.
Afterwards they would then go to their Professors and share with them how what
they came to Oral Roberts University to get in education they did not get until
they went through my training program. Ouch! LOL!
Why am I sharing all this? I am sharing all this with you,
Jane, because I know that you and Cindy have differing views to the views
biblically speaking that Sally and I hold. However, Sally and I have never seen
fit or found it to be in Christian Character to attack or assault you two on
your differing view points in some of these issues. However, Sally has told me
over the last year that (and if I am wrong forgive me) that whenever you have
the opportunity instead of discussing your differing views on a subject that
comes up with Sally, instead you take that opportunity to attack and demean
Sally on the subject at hand. I have gone through this with a friend of mine who
is a Catholic Priest. He thinks he is absolute and beyond error. I have had to
write him a few times and share with him that there is only one God who is
absolute and beyond error, LOL! and that the Bible teaches in 1 John 1:8 "If we
say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in
us." Also in Ecclesiastes 7:20 "Indeed, there is not a righteous man on earth
who continually does good and who never sins." (see also Mark 10:18, 1 Kings
8:46, Psalm 14:3, Ecclesiastes 7:20, Rom 3:23, 1 John 1:8-10)
What am I trying to say? Change your convictions? No. I am
trying to say donít be so absolute about your own opinion and allow Sally the
right of her opinion. Lets suppose that you are right and we are wrong. Does not
God command you in Romans 14:1-4,
"Now accept the one who is weak in faith, but not for the
purpose of passing judgment on his opinions. One man has faith that he may eat
all things, but he who is weak eats vegetables only. Let not him who eats regard
with contempt him who does not eat, and let not him who does not eat judge him
who eats, for God has accepted him. Who are you to judge the servant of another?
To his own master he stands or falls; and stand he will, for the Lord is able to
make him stand."
Again in James,
James 4:11-12 "Do not speak against one another, brethren. He
who speaks against a brother, or judges his brother, speaks against the law, and
judges the law; but if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law; but a
judge of it. There is only one Lawgiver-and-Judge, the One who is able to save
and to destroy; but who are you who judge your neighbor?"
Jane, you are a person of strong convictions and I can
appreciate that because as you all well know, so am I :o) I guess that is one of
the reasons I write, I express my view point through my writings. You all
live together and because you do you need to not badger one another about your
differences or judge your sister because you donít agree with her on a subject.
You need to have respect for each otherís differences of opinion and stay open
and teachable unless you just want to be an expert (see the beginning of my
letter). Allow Sally to hold her own opinion and even express it. You donít have
to agree with it, but doesnít 1 Corinthians 13:1-10 state,
"If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not
have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have the
gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all
faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I
give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I deliver my body to be burned,
but do not have love, it profits me nothing. Love is patient, love is kind, and
is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act
unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into
account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with
the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all
things. love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done
away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be
done away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part; but when the perfect
comes, the partial will be done away."
Note that Paul states here we all only know in part. While I
believe the Bible is absolute and beyond error, yet I Dale am not absolute and
beyond error about all that I think the Bible teaches; Sally is not absolute and
beyond error, Cindy is not absolute and beyond error, and yes, I know it is a
bigggggggg shock (LOL!), but neither is Jane absolute and beyond error. Paul
wrote "For we know in part, and we prophesy in part; but when the perfect comes,
the partial will be done away." Only Jesus is absolute and beyond error and only
when He returns will we then know fully. Until then we all look through a glass
darkly striving for perfection, but never attaining to it in this life until we
go home to Jesus or Jesus returns. So what does that mean? It means I believe
that at the moment I am right, but that doesnít mean I am closed to the view
point of my sister and even welcome it because as I hear the view points of
others it shows holes in my own theology and provides the Holy Spirit the means
to correct me. However, not through the criticism of others but through sharing
with one another.
Jane, as much as I think I know, no matter how much I think I
know, I come naked before the Lord telling Him I know nothing. The first thing I
did after graduating from college was to give back to Him my college education
and tell the Lord, "Jesus, I know nothing. please teach me." The Bible teaches
1 Peter 5:5-6 "All of you, clothe yourselves with humility
toward one another, for God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the
humble. Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that He may
exalt you at the proper time."
James 4:6 "But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says,
ĎGod battles-against the proud, but gives grace to the humble.í"
Let us be humble and respect each otherís opinions, but not
for the purpose of passing judgment on each other.
You know Jane, when you guys first moved to your new
apartment, Sally told me you guys wanted to have your own Bible study and I said
to Sally that would be great if everyone is allowed equal input, allowed to
share what is on their heart even though everyone else may not agree. I told her
that was the only way the Holy Spirit could minister to you all and you all
could grow in the Lord. However, when she told me that you and Cindy started
trying to lord it over everybody else in this Bible study and take over and let
Sally and others know they had nothing to offer you, I encouraged Sally to just
find her fellowship and Bible study in the local church she was attending.
So what is it going to be? Humility in love, loving one
another and respecting the opinion of one another? Or being an expert? Jesus had
the following conversation with some experts in His day:
John 9:39-41 "And Jesus said, ĎFor judgment I came into this
world, that those who do not see may see; and that those who see may become
blind.í Those of the Pharisees who were with Him heard these things, and said to
Him, ĎWe are not blind too, are we?í Jesus said to them, ĎIf you were blind, you
would have no sin; but since you say, "We see," your sin remains.í"
Your Blind Friend in Jesus,
Dale P. Kruse