At one time the distinction between those holding a modalistic view of God and those holding the Christian view was clear. This clarity was maintained because of the vigilance of the orthodox Christian Church of ancient times who were decisive in their refutation of any and all heresy that arose on their watch. Unlike Christians of old, the Church today has suffered many setbacks in its quest to present a clear, concise presentation of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
With the focus of many today on the phenomenon of "teaching experiences" rather than "experiencing teaching" doctrinal truths taught explicitly in scripture, and vigorously protected throughout the ages by the Church of old are summarily dismissed in lieu of someone's personal experiences.
Televised pulpits running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week eke out self-serving rhetoric from pseudo-theological "talking heads" that contradict, and in some cases, literally reverse the clear teaching of the Bible; all done before masses of scripturally deprived followers who are chomping at the bit for a "fresh word from God," but are left lacking by the orthodox church's lackluster public response in addressing these perversions of truth.
These neglected followers are those that Dr. Walter Martin, founder of the Christian Research Institute, used to refer to as "the spare baggage of the Church." While it may be true that this indictment is overly broad in its assignment of responsibility, it is justified in all of us who are aware of the distorted nature of these teachings, yet are remiss in confronting them publicly.1 Indeed, it is we who have left, and are leaving those for whom Christ died unprotected.
The question that confronts modern Christianity is "will be as decisive as our 3rd and 4th century brethren in meeting this heresy." Sure, much of the same terminology exists between the Christian and the modalist, and they and our Christian Pentecostal brethren even share similar experiences. But in spite of this, the fact remains that modalism and Biblical Christianity are mutually exclusive ideas, and thus must be met and overcome publicly in the marketplace of ideas. What is needed is a return to the Word of God as the final authority in matters of faith and theology, and a re-commitment to those truths that distinctly define us as the true "Body of Jesus Christ." The Christian Gospel is crystal clear:
- God the Son became a man, named Jesus the Christ, who lived a sinless life, suffered and died by crucifixion, was buried and was raised from the dead the third day (1 Corinthians 15:3-4, Philippians 2:5-11).
- God the Son was sent by The Father to perform this task. (John 3:16,17)
- There are both The Father AND the Son. The Father is NOT the Son, and the Son is NOT the father. To teach otherwise is "anti-Christ" according to scripture. (I John 2:21-23)
- One can only be saved by faith (not works) in this biblical Jesus Christ (John 1:12, Romans 10:9, Ephesians 2:8-9).
- A rejection of this truth is a rejection of the witness of Almighty God himself. (I John 5:9, 10)
In conclusion, Modern-Day Modalists reject The Father AND the Son, opting instead to believe and teach that The Father IS the Son. To them The Father didn't send the Son into the world because he "so loved" it, He BECAME the Son because he "so loved the world."
In their theology, the multitude of passages recorded in scripture depicting the subject-object distinction of inter-relations between the Father and the Son, of necessity, have to be redefined. One is led to believe that in every instance where the Father addresses the Son, He was addressing himself Because of this, they don't accept what God says about himself, they reject the Jesus of the Bible, and they distort His gospel of salvation. (2 Corinthians 11:3-4, Galatians 1:8-9).