For the past thirty years Neil Anderson, PhD, has been one of the most influential voices in North American Christianity. He has influenced many through his millions of books sold (from his work on the demonic in The Bondage Breaker to his recent work, Becoming a Disciple Making Church). That’s not to mention his influence as professor at Talbot Theological Seminary and his leadership through Freedom in Christ Ministries, which he founded.
Neil is a friend of mine, and he recently told me that he really believes that “The Cost of Discipleship” theme for our National Disciple Making Forum on November 4–5 is vitally important for the church in North America.
The following is a Q & A summary of our discussion:
Bobby Harrington: Why is “The Cost of Discipleship” theme for this year’s Forum important?
Neil Anderson: If you haven’t noticed, the “progressives” have already “woke” up, which has changed the American culture, while many churches were sleeping. The march to Marxism is fueled by “big tech,” propagated by liberal universities, supported by the media, and presently controlled by the Executive and Legislative branches of government.
BH: What is of particular concern to you about this current culture?
NA: I have always loved and served my country, but my biggest concern is for the church, which is my first love and for whom I serve in ministry. Perhaps God had such times as these in mind when he inspired Paul to write, “Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed” (Rom. 13:11).
BH: Why are you concerned about the church?
NA: What is happening to our country is sickening, but my greatest concern is for the “church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:15). Jesus said, we are the salt of the earth, but when it becomes tasteless, “it is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men” (Matt. 5:13). Here’s one example of what has fueled my concern. I read about a local pastor that caved into social pressure and adopted same sex marriages and acquiesced to the LGBTQ movement.
The church went from 1200 to 150 in a matter of months. He left the church and is now traveling around the country sharing his insights. If you give the devil an inch, he will bilk you for a mile. Jesus said, “Until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 5:18, 19). If you don’t want to be the least in the kingdom of God, then don’t compromise who you are or what you believe.
BH: What is the role of discipleship in this time?
NA: After the pandemic, the church will be smaller in number, but those churches who wake up to the reality of who they are in Christ will be better stewards of the faith. They will also have to pay the price for discipleship. If we hold the line, we will be called racists, bigots, hypocrites, and haters. We cannot retaliate in kind, but we must speak up. I strongly recommend Erwin Lutzer’s latest book, We Will Not Be Silenced.
BH: So, do you think courage is particularly important right now?
NA: Edmund Burke said, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” What does it take to stop us? It is the test of every Christian’s character. Nobody and nothing can keep us from being the people God created us to be, and that is God’s will for our lives.
We will have to face persecution, but to this we were called.
Neil Anderson will be leading a track at our National Disciple Making Forum this November 4–5. Click here to get more information and register.