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By Carman Bradley

It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ – Jesus Christ (Matthew 4:4)


In the first week after Christ’s crucifixion, Simon Peter, Thomas, Nathanael, the sons of Zebedee, and two other disciples were together fishing on the Sea of Tiberias.  They had a sound boat, a proper net and the experience to know that nighttime fishing was the most lucrative (they had all that was humanly necessary for success).  Ironically, that night they caught nothing. (NIV, John 21:3)  Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore and called out to them: “Friends, haven’t you any fish?” “No,” they answered.  Then Christ said, “Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some.”  When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish. (21:5-6)  The truth is, on that occasion, they needed Christ to make the large harvest; to bring in the miraculous catch.  Without His blessing, without Christ’s literal desire to perform a recognizable miracle, staying out longer, going through the actions more religiously, even adding more fishermen, might have yielded only a few.  

Once the disciples came ashore, they discovered a fire of burning coals with fish on it and some bread.  Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish you have caught.” (21:10) “Come and have breakfast.” (21:12)  When they had finished eating, Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you truly love me more than these?”[i] (21:15) Simon Peter replied, “Yes Lord, you know that I love you.” (21:15)  Jesus then replied, “Feed my lambs.”  It is thought that this sequence was repeated three times to apparently undo Peter’s earlier denials of Christ.  The second time Jesus said, “Take care of my sheep” and the third time, “Feed my sheep.”  Although feeding the “flock” material food may very well have been part of this command, it is more likely that Christ was referring to supplying believers with spiritual truth.

The word truth (or a variation like truly) is used some 365 times in the Bible.  Jesus Christ is renowned for stating “I tell you the truth…”  Indeed, He declares: “I am the way and the truth and the life.” (John 14:6)  The first Christian theologian to attempt any systematic explanation of the concept of truth was Augustine.  He argued, “If man’s mind is incapable of grasping the truth, particularly if man is incapable of grasping the truth about God, then morality and theology are impossible.”[ii] Augustine went on to assert that in God, there is moral and spiritual truth.  Indeed, the Greek philosopher Plato did not divorce truth from moral and spiritual values.  He went so far as to teach, to the consternation of many readers, that “knowledge of the truth automatically guarantees a moral life.”[iii]

In this longstanding fight over sexual liberation, now epitomized by marriage redefinition, the truth is that God cannot be double-minded on the issue.  He is not divided in opinion, or split in His guidance, on sanctified marriage.  Common sense dictates that the orthodox and the liberal cannot both be right.  One group of “professed” Christians bears the authentic witness, the other a counterfeit.  Following Augustine’s line of analysis, moral and spiritual truth underscores an orthodox-liberal theological paradox.  The contradiction is not complicated and can be simply put: “Is Christ in favour of same-sex marriage or not?”  Sadly, in this unfolding struggle, too many senior evangelists claim (or act as though) the issue is excessively complex, not capable of a yes-or-no-type answer.  Instead of feeding their flock a true solution – spiritual guidance which may be confidently understood, they do one or more of the following: (1) preach a compromised message to avoid offending some; (2) completely ignore the topic; (3) claim that there is nothing that can be done to change the outcome; (4) declare both sides right; or (5) herald the advent of same-sex marriage with joy.  Equally tragic, others act as though the matter of marriage redefinition is strategically inconsequential, certainly not important enough to warrant publicly isolating a historic denomination of some 3,500 churches and over two million adherents[iv] (about 10 percent of Canadian Christendom, 0.11 percent of Global Christians), even though willfully apostate.  The like-minded delude themselves that God will bless any unified fellowship of the liberal and orthodox.

Canadian Christendom in this century can be likened to a family in severe crisis because some members have chosen to defy the traditional family rules, which were established millenniums ago and which have been the basis for peace, prosperity and reverencing God for billions of ancestors.  The crisis is not just an issue of counter-productive divisions, rebellion and weakened family example.  The predicament is worse because disobedient members proselytize in public that the traditional rules are wrong and that their new "liberated" conduct, based upon their new "liberal" rules, is right.  As recently as May 31, 2006, a United Church minister illustrated this point in an email MarriageReality.Org:

“I’m a minister in The United Church of Canada and have grave concerns about your website and the information that you are disseminating.[v] I am wholeheartedly in favour of same sex marriage and am part of a number of campaigns to prevent our Prime Minister from raising the question at the House of Commons.  I don’t know why you persist in assuming that the Orthodox Christian belief is opposed to homosexuality; far from it.

Have you not heard, have you not seen?  Christendom is dead.  We live in a post-Christian and post-modern culture.  Your attempts to impose your specific Christian values on others are neither welcome nor Christian, in my view.

Please do not send me any further emails.

I wish you God’s peace and blessings

For over forty years the orthodox have witnessed to the rebellious in vain.  Fatigued with the fight or duped by the propaganda, many believers have chosen to acquiesce to the false witness.  They are blind to the consequences of unorthodoxy.  Indeed, during this period of struggle the "heretical" members have indoctrinated themselves with their own self-serving worldview and lobbied hard to have their view adopted throughout the religious and secular "neighborhoods."  If the rebellious called themselves by any other family name, the damage would be significantly remitted.  The travesty and irreverence lays in the fact the rebellious claim the Christian family name, yet obey few Christian tenets and follow a reimaged Christ.  The following email (extract), received at MarriageReality.Org on December 11, 2005, illustrates the point on pro-gay theological teaching:

We are all made in God's image....and that must include those of homosexual orientation as well. To demean a person for something over which they have no control is anything but life-giving and loving as God would have us be.  Jesus loved and served those on the margins...he accepted them...I can do no less. To exclude gays and lesbians from the opportunity of marrying is exclusivism at its worst...marriage is about a committed, loving, supportive relationship...not about how you use your plumbing!...I believe it is important to honour any commitment made before God, friends and family and would welcome the right to extend that opportunity to my homosexual brothers and sisters in Christ. [My underline]

Reverend Doctor John Shelby Spong, recipient of the New York Chapter of the Humanist Association’s, “Humanist of the Year” award for 1999, illustrates the point of professing a reimaged Christ in the following extract from his 2001 release, A New Christianity For A New World:

So why does it matter that we reformulate the tenets of traditional Christianity or attempt to redefine God in non-theistic terms?...We reimage God to keep the world from enduring the pain of a continuing reliance on a theistic deity….That same theistic God is quoted by people who want to impose their definitions of homosexuality or their values in the right-to-life movement on everyone else.  So it matters how one thinks of God.[vi]

Canadian Christendom (Our Christian Family) has three options under the circumstances: (1) continue with the status quo, muddling along, holding "all inclusive" prayer rallies, projecting a false image of Christian unity, evident to the observant believer, and certainly to Jesus Christ [the status quo family has neither confronted the disobedience and repented of the rebellion nor successfully reconciled the differences]; (2) accept the tenets of pro-homosexual theology and unify the family under a reimaged view of Christ; or (3) re-establish comprehensive orthodox boundaries to define membership in the "postmodern" Christian family and separate from all who wish to claim family membership, but who will not conform.

There can be no healing of our nation, no Christian revival, and no true unity of believers in Canadian Christendom without publicly isolating apostate denominations and heretical believers.  Were Christ to heal the nation without requiring these conditions being met, would be to breach the Law of one spiritual truth in God and explicitly condone the actions and theology of the liberal-minded.  The following is a short list of declarations and policy positions[vii] within the United Church of Canada which make “brotherly and sisterly unity” impossible:

“Abortion is morally justifiable.” – 1971

“Fidelity includes openness to secondary relationships of intimacy and potential

 genital expression but with commitment to the primary marriage.” – 1980

“Theological Affirmation…we reject the argument made by some that AIDS is God’s

punishment for homosexuals.” – 1986

Unrepentant homosexuals who profess faith in Jesus can join

and be ordained – 1988

Work begins on Voices United.  Rev. Dr. Victor Shepherd writes on the new hymnal:

“Two prayers [including the Lord’s Prayer] refer to God as ‘Father and Mother,’

six hymns name God ‘mother’ and ‘Goddess’ and, according to the hymnbook committee

[‘Voices United has virtually eliminated ‘LORD’ from the Christian vocabulary’]

because ‘LORD’ is hierarchical and therefore oppressive.” - 1991

UCC adopts a policy to lobby teacher’s unions to promote homosexual

affirming programs in public schools – 1997

“No I don’t believe Christ is God.” – UCC Moderator, 1997

Adopt a resolution to affirm civil recognition of same-sex “unions.” - 2000

Amend the resolution from 2000 to redefine “marriage” inclusive of homosexual couples. 

Rev. J. Clark Saunders reports: “Out of over a hundred commissioners, I saw only

four hands raised in opposition to the motion.  So I think we can say that the

General Council’s support was overwhelming.” - 2003

Affidavit to Supreme Court: “There is no theological impediment

to same-sex marriage.” – 2004

“The United Church does not believe that the faith stance of a community

which supports same-sex marriage undermines the faith stance

of a community that does not.” - 2005

“Marriage will be enhanced not diminished, religious freedom will be protected,

not threatened, and Canadian society will be strengthened, not weakened,

as a result of this [same-sex marriage] legislation.” – 2005

“Our society is multicultural, our world is multifaith; our church community has varying

theological perspectives in it.  Some make exclusive claims to absolute truth ...

While believing that our faith is grounded in truth, our truth need

 not deny the truths of others”FAITH TALK II, 2005

“My hope is that the contribution the [UCC] has offered in this debate is a window

for politicians to see the possibility of balancing human rights, tradition, faithfulness,

and religious freedoms by voting in favour of civil same-sex marriage.”  - Moderator, Parliamentary Prayer Breakfast, 2005


In a speech titled “THE PAGANIZATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH,” before the Community of Concern AGM, April 29, 2004, Dr. Don Faris said:

In 1989 I wrote the book, ‘The Trojan Horse: The Homosexual Ideology and the Christian Church,’ as a response to the 1988 General Council...If the authority of the one Word of God, Jesus Christ, as attested in the Scriptures, is replaced by the authority of ideologies from the dominant culture, are we still dealing with Christianity? It is not with great pleasure that I say 15 years later, that what I predicted has happened.  With the approval of gay, lesbian and bisexual marriage, the foolhardy blessing of behavior that God condemns, the paganization of the United Church is almost complete.  I define modern paganism as a self-centered religiousity based on the notion that everyone should believe whatever they want and do whatever they want, because there are no religious or moral absolutes.[viii]

The 2006 Global Day of Prayer theme was repentance.  Think what can happen when 200 million believers across the world repent and pray says the promotional material.  Here in Calgary, the Global Day of Prayer organization included the United Church of Canada within Christendom.  Under the title, “UNITED IN PRAYER FOR OUR CHURCHES” [My underline] the GDOP Service lists the following:

Campbell-Stone United Church

McDougall United Church

Central United

Midlands United Church

Chinese United Church

Northminister United Church

Deer Park United Church

Ogden United Church

Foothills United Church

Parkdale United Church

Forest Lawn United Church

Red Deer Lake United Church

Hillhurst United Church

Renfrew United Church

Knox United Church

Robert McLure United Church

Lakeview United Church

Rosedale United Church

Living Spirit United Church

Scarboro United Church

Southwood United Church

Wild Rose United Church

St. David’s United Church

Woodcliff United Church

St. Matthew’s United Church

Gaetz Memorial United Church

St. Thomas United Church

Carstairs Bancroft United Church

Symons Valley United Church

Cremona United Church

Crossfield United Church

Nanton-Parkland United Church

De Winton United Church

Strathmore United Church

Vulcan United Church

First United Church

Japanese United Church

McKillop United Church

Southminister United Church

Knox United Church

Airdrie United Church



Christ asks, “Do you truly love me more than these?”  God wants to perform a revival miracle in Canada, yet we persist in figuratively “fishing from the wrong side of the boat.”  Our goal is healing the nation, Christian unity, and bringing in boat-loads of saved souls.  However, the catalyst for such a miraculous renewal is true repentance.  God will not be mocked.  If we consider the United Church part of Christendom, as the Calgary GDOP does, then where is the repentance?  Where is the respect for God’s Word?  Where is the reverence for the authentic Jesus Christ?  We fellowship with the UCC as though they are “our” brothers in Christ; and we expect God to graciously initiate a national revival.  It is not going to happen, unless either the UCC repents or the denomination is declared to be outside Christendom.

Christ commands Christian leadership to “Feed my sheep.”  His gracious intervention is not petitioned by the quantity that turnout at spiritual rallies, but by what is in the hearts and behind the motivations of the organizers and participants on these occasions.  Had the Calgary GDOP attendance beat out that of Dallas, Texas, in 2005; had the City finished in first place and not second for largest turnout in North America, it is doubtful this would have changed what is now history.  Tarina White, reporting for The Calgary Sun just before the 2006 GDOP, wrote:

Thousands expected for prayer day.We may well outgrow the Saddledome this year,’ event co-director Rev. Murray Dodds said yesterday… ‘The Calgary event drew 11,000 worshippers last year,’ said Dodds.  ‘We were the second-largest in North America last year,’ Dodds said, adding Dallas Texas, was the only city to top Calgary’s turnout.[ix]

Equally, the fact that the 2006 GDOP attendance in Calgary was down by over 6,000 is not of huge consequence, unless you budgeted for many more attendees or you measure success by numbers.  Christ seeks our obedience, our faithfulness and our profession of spiritual truth; not our indifference to falsehood; not our lukewarm reverence; not our public attendance.

Prior to the GDOP 2005, a request was sent from MarriageReality.Org titled, “A GLOBAL DAY OF PRAYER: LAYING THE ECUMENICAL BOUNDARY FOR CHRISTIAN INCLUSIVITY – AN OPEN LETTER TO THE UNITED CHURCH OF CANADA.”  This letter, sent to the Calgary GDOP organizers and to the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada (who also supported the GDOP) outlined the apostate position of the United Church and argued “that an ecumenical gathering which brings together believers of literally any theological persuasion is, in reality, an event that professes no common beliefs and in the end dishonors Jesus Christ.” The letter proposed that the EFC declare to the United Church that, “In the spirit of ecumenicalism we have drawn a broad theological boundary line and yet find the UCC position outside.”  No response was given by the EFC and, in the opinion of MarriageReality.Org after meeting with a key Calgary GDOP organizer, the Calgary GDOP felt that laying down any comprehensive boundary line defining Christian orthodoxy (to the exclusion of the unorthodox) was seen to be counter-productive to the intended spirit of “togetherness.”

Is it not ironic that only two days after the largest collaborative prayer rally in history (GDOP 2005), that Belinda Stronach should cross the floor of the House of Commons, join the Liberal Party of Canada and sustain the Liberal Government by one vote (153-152).  And one month later, Parliament should vote 158-133 in favour of the Liberal Government’s Bill C-38, The Civil Marriage Act?  The overwhelming message in this outcome is that the “status quo” compromised witness of Canadian Christendom will result in continued failure to stop the tide of theological liberalism and secular-humanism.  The difference between an “event” and a successful anointed prayer rally is answered prayer.  What can be said in this regard for the GDOP?

The real disappointment in the 2006 Calgary GDOP is not the 55 percent decrease in attendance, but rather the missed opportunity to truly repent in public of the unorthodoxy, the heresy and the apostasy within Christendom and to declare an unambiguous statement of beliefs regarding abortion, euthanasia, human cloning, genetic engineering and same-sex marriage.  Praise God for the witness of Bishop Henry at the Calgary GDOP.  Without him the words “abortion,” “euthanasia,” and “same-sex marriage” would never have been said.  Without his speech the long list of problems within Canadian society would not have been declared.  Odd, don’t you think, for an event organized primarily by evangelicals?  Roman Catholics know where they stand on these issues and they witness with conviction.  On the other hand, the rest of Canadian Christendom, projects either a muddled or a muted witness. 

All Christian leaders are charged to feed believers the spiritual truth. The truth is: “Jesus Christ has not changed and He is still delivering homosexuals from same-sex attraction.   Ex-gay Mike Ensley writes in “True Love Changes You: How Jesus Christ Loved Me Out of Homosexuality”:

One day, when I was in one of the places I went to 'hook up,' feeling disgusted with myself but hopelessly needy, I was suddenly overcome by the presence of the Lord.  I heard this voice in my heart telling me Jesus had followed me there, even to that nasty sinful place, and wanted me to come back with Him.  This revelation about His true feelings toward me began a slow but inevitable change in my mind.  I knew I was meant for better, and for the first time dared to believe my life could change…[Now] everyone wants to know: ‘Do I like girls!?’  The answer is: ‘I'll get there when I'm supposed to!’  Many aren't impressed to hear this.  You aren't supposed to be impressed with me, but with God's love, grace and power.  Heterosexuality isn't the goal, holiness is.  And I am getting there!...As I walk daily in deeper intimacy with Him, and in genuine intimacy with other guys, I experience continuing victory over this struggle. Soon I will celebrate four years of freedom. [x]

The sooner that Canadian Christendom unites behind this reality and returns to confidently witnessing in public to this spiritual truth, the better.  Homosexist theology is not an issue that Christians can agree to disagree on.  Moreover, prayer and fellowship with the apostate United Church of Canada can no more bring God’s anointing (not in 2005, not in 2006, not ever), than partnering with Baal worshipers in Elijah’s time would have gained God's favour.  Elijah’s warning to a compromised Israel:

How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow Him: but if Baal, then follow him.


Copyright © 2008 StandForGod.Org


[i] NIV footnote 21:15, “more than these. May mean ‘more than you love these men” or “more than these men love me.”

[ii] Baker’s Dictionary of Theology, Everett F. Harrison, Editer-in-Chief, (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House, 1960), p.532.

[iii]Ibid., p.533.

[iv] 2001 Census shows that 2.3 million Canadians declared UCC their denominational affiliation.


[vi] John Shelby Spong, A New Christianity For a New World (San Franciso: Harber, 2001), p.230.

[vii] See Section 9 at for more detail and footnote references. 

[viii]Don Faris, “THE PAGANIZATION OF THE UNITED CHURCH,” CONCERN, Vol. XV No. 2, June 2004, p.1-3.

[ix]Tarina White, Thousands expected for prayer day,” The Calgary Sun, Sunday June 4, 2006.

[x]Mike Ensley, “True Love Changes You: How Jesus Christ Loved Me Out of Homosexuality,” Real Life Stories, the Exodus Impact, September 2005, Vol.3, Issue 9.