Promise Keepers' Theology Needs Scrutiny

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), July 6, 1996 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Promise Keepers' Theology Needs Scrutiny


Byline: Janet Hallman

From all appearances, last weekend's Promise Keepers gathering at Soldier Field delivered all the excitement its attendees had anticipated.

To be sure, the sight of 69,000 men packing out a stadium in blistering heat to hear how to improve their relationships with God, their families and people of other races was encouraging.

But for all the good messages Promise Keepers speakers delivered on family and race relations, some of their theological statements seemed confusing and, at times, even contradictory.

It's a hard subject to even bring up, because to raise questions about Promise Keepers on any level is, to many evangelicals, tantamount to the unforgivable sin. The important thing, many say, is that this is a group that is doing a lot of positive things for society. And how can you disagree with that?

Yet Promise Keepers has earned a powerful role among evangelicals as an almost untouchable spiritual authority. And that's all the more reason to evaluate closely what the organization says.

Case in point: Many of the speakers at the Chicago conference emphasized that only the power of God can reconcile people with one another, and men are powerless on their own.

But at a later press conference, Promise Keepers founder Bill McCartney said, "The reason this nation has never been free of racial (division) is that Almighty God's hands have been tied." McCartney went on to say that God can't reconcile the races because "we won't let him."

Human responsibility is one thing. But is Promise Keepers really trying to promote the idea that man has the power to tie and untie the hands of God? If so, why the contradictory statements?

John Armstrong, an author and director of Reformation & Revival Ministries Inc. in Carol Stream, said he was disturbed that evangelist Luis Palau's opening message did not thoroughly expound the evangelical understanding of the gospel.

"I heard him say, 'Come back to God, whether you're Mormon or Jewish or Catholic' or what, and there was no clear explanation about the God to whom we are to come," he said.

Wayne Grudem, professor of biblical and systematic theology at Trinity International University in Deerfield, also said he disagreed theologically with some of the statements he heard.

In particular, he cited McCartney's explanation of John 13:1, where McCartney said that Jesus was "taking off skin color" by removing his outer garment.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Promise Keepers' Theology Needs Scrutiny
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?