Calling (ALL) Religious Individuals!!!!!

Hank Hanegraaff and the “Christian Research Institute” by Wayne Jackson Christian Courier: Penpoints Monday, July 23, 2001 Over the years the folks at C.R.I. (Martin, Hanegraaff, et al.) have lustily pursued debate encounters with a host of cultists. They have engaged the heretical movements in verbal and written battles time and again, and begged for additional conflicts. Hank Hanegraaff is president of the Christian Research Institute, an organization located in southern California that specializes in reviewing the major doctrines of various “cults” that profess an identity with “Christianity.” Hanegraaff is the host of a radio program, called The Bible Answer Man. The program is broadcast daily throughout the United States and Canada. Currently, however, the “Answer Man” is under pressure for some “answers” relative to his own ethics. And this is not the first time the gentleman has been in legal trouble. See: CRI - Hank Hanegraaff Lawsuit. Dr. James Kennedy is “Pastor” for the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Kennedy is widely known for his own radio and television ministry, during which he enunciates strong positions relative to certain moral and social issues. For example, he vigorously opposes abortion, and he courageously exposes the fallacies of the theory of evolution. For some years Kennedy and Hanegraaff were associates and close friends. It seems that Kennedy was significantly responsible for training the “Answer Man” for the position the latter now holds with the Research Institute. Currently, though, the two are at serious odds. Recently, Hanegraaff, via his radio broadcast, rebuked Kennedy for some statements the minister had made relative to “astrology.” On the other hand, Dr. Kennedy is charging that Hanegraaff has flagrantly plagiarized his writings. Supposedly, the offense is so serious that a lawsuit would be a viable recourse were it not for Kennedy’s scruples against such a drastic action. Conversely, Hanegraaff claims that he has been conscientious in giving Dr. Kennedy credit for the training he enjoyed under the prestigious clergyman. For further information, see: Is the Good News Bear a Copycat? Hank Hanegraaff and Plagiarism. Plagiarism is not an uncommon phenomenon – even in religious circles. It is an amazing thing that some operate under the impression that they can provide a sort of “wave-of-the-hand” acknowledgment to another’s work, while copying line-after-line of material, without the common use of appropriate grammatical devices which indicate the identity of the real author. In this brief editorial, though, I want to focus upon another of Mr. Hanegraaff’s problems. Hanegraaff’s predecessor was the late Walter Martin. For years, these gentlemen have challenged those groups they deem to possess the characteristics of a “cult.” They have debated with the Mormons, Seventh-day Adventists, the Watchtower organization, etc. And, quite frankly, they have done a commendable job in some instances. The reason for their success has been that, when arguing against the peculiar doctrines of these well-known cults, they have presented truth in many cases. Tragically, however, on some issues the “Christian Research Institute” is as rank with error, and as unscrupulous in their misrepresentations, as anyone they review. With considerable regularity the C.R.I. receives inquiries regarding the churches of Christ. They must weary of the questions for they have prepared rote responses, either in a printed or taped format. Congregations of the Lord’s people are castigated as cultish simply because they do not acquiesce with some of the fundamental doctrines of sectarianism. In one small sheet, the C.R.I. has made several charges against those who profess to be Christians only. The two most prominent are summarized as follows. First, it is alleged that those affiliated with the church of Christ teach the dogma of “baptismal regeneration,” n