Aloha & Greetings in the Name of the Lord Jesus,
My name is Steven Mitchell and I pastor the Garden City Grace Brethren Church in Roanoke, Virginia.
At week's end, the Grace Brethren's Celebrate 2010 Conference and Momentum Youth Conference will be in full swing and I am praying for a blessed time for all in attendance.
There is one event, however, that is being offered at both conferences concerning GBIM's Reaching Ethnic America campaign and this is the leading of tours to a Hindu temple and the possibility of visiting a Muslim mosque. These practices are of extreme concern for a growing number of people within the FGBC and I believe that it has reached the point where a loving warning is in order if you plan to attend these tours.
As a missionary who has spent time in India and is married to an Indian wife, my heart is really in this plea for discernment. Dear believer, please don't go into these pagan places of worship! Don't remove your shoes, eat a temple meal, or don the Muslim headdress (hijab) because these practices have religious significance to these false beliefs.
Please watch this Youtube clip where a friend and I lay out our concerns more fully:
If you want more info and some more detailed discussion and talking points concerning the further danger of these temple/mosque visits, please visit our blog at this address and read the three-part series about this practice that is gaining momentum in the FGBC.
Finally, I urge you upon viewing these articles of concern to be safe and refrain from anything that calls itself a “total immersion experience” into Hinduism or any other false religion(This is a quote from the latest issue of GBIM's Kairos magazine advertising the Cincinnati temple trip after Celebrate 2010). The Bible is clear that we, as God's people, ought not to participate in any aspect of pagan worship or religious practice ( 1 Corinthians 10:19-20).
Dear readers, please consider these concerns from my heart of hearts. Pastors, lovingly view the evidence and exhort your people accordingly. Parents, be wise concerning the potential dangers of this practice for your young people. Young people, dare to be different and stand against trends that would cause you in any way to compromise your stand with Jesus Christ. Beloved, be immersed in God's Word and you will have the discernment He provides to guide and protect you and help you worship Him in Spirit and in truth.
May the Lord bless you richly,
Feel free to call me at 540-904-5420 or
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org