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Christians Say the Darnedest Things: IFB Pastor John MacFarlane Reminds Congregants That They Are Worthless Without Jesus

first baptist church bryan ohio

Recently, John MacFarlane, pastor of First Baptist Church in Bryan, Ohio, reminded congregants that they are worthless without Jesus as their Lord and Savior:

Today is considered a day of empowerment. Self-affirming statements beginning with “I am” are to spoken to yourself. [I AM Bruce Almighty! Man, that’s empowering.] 🙂


Interestingly, I preached a sermon a month ago that addressed this issue.  The purpose of self-affirmation is to remind those who may be considered weak, insignificant, or less than others in society that they are not and to provide a dose of encouragement.  There’s one huge, significant problem, though, with worldly self-affirmation. [In other words, we should treat people like shit because God treats them like shit.]

Humanity is glorified.  Man affirms the goodness OF man and IN man while ignoring the truth found in Romans 3:10-12.  “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:  (11)  There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.  (12)  They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.”

By making these humanistic affirmations, it comes dangerously close to elevating man to the place of God. [OMG! Humanism!!!!!!]

When I make a self-affirming statement and say, “I am,” it is falling into the psychological trap of affirming man whereas theology and the Christian life is about affirming God.  Either MAN gets the credit or GOD gets the credit, but you cannot simultaneously credit both. (Please see Giving Credit to Whom Credit is Due.)

Remember, dear Christian, that we are NOTHING apart from God and the salvation provided by His Son, Jesus Christ.  It is the Lord who makes “all things work together for good.”  Self-affirmation is a sinful, prideful maneuver to stroke our egos.

Affirm GOD. Credit GOD. Glorify GOD. Praise GOD. Amen! [except when something “bad” happens. then it is your fault; the flesh’s fault; Satan’s fault]

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

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    I remember my grandfather saying humanism was bad because it tries to make man the center, the equivalent of a God. My teen mind couldn’t wrap itself around why that was supposed to be bad. I quietly logged that away as something to explore later on my own, through research.

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