Now I've been all over the world, as you know, and have had lots of discussions with lots of Christian leaders and I've read lots of things about the church and the history of the church and the theology of the church. I've been all over everywhere and I can just tell you this. Right now in this day, and it's been this way for a long time through this twentieth century, THE biggest problem in the church is its inability and unwillingness to distinguish true Christians from false. It's...it's literally killing the church.
You go all over the world, and you see people who claim to be Christians. I've been in the eastern Europe and I've seen the orthodox church which is by its own definition a Christian church. They believe they're the only true Christians in eastern Europe. And then you go into western Europe, and earlier this year in France and then in the last couple of weeks in Italy and there is this massive monolithic system called Roman Catholicism which believes itself to be the only true Christian Church on the planet. It's one thing for them to believe it, it's something else for Billy Graham to say the Pope is a fine, outstanding Christian. Something else for him to hold an evangelistic meeting and invite all the Catholics to cooperate. It's something else for Bill Bright to say that the Pope is a fine, outstanding Christian. It's something else for people in the ECT, the people who are in Christian leadership in America to embrace the Roman Catholics and say we all love the same Christ, we all serve the same God in the same way. And these are all our Christian brothers and sisters. It's one thing for these institutions to exist, it's something else for those people who are Christians to embrace them as if they're all true Christians. This obliterates the line of clarity and invites the enemy into the camp and just devastates the church.
You can turn on your television and watch TBN. Everybody that comes on is embraced as a Christian, even though it's just...just filled with false teachers and people who obviously haven't been delivered...It's the idea that anybody who believes in Jesus is a Christian. And if you want to push the point beyond that, you're somehow a problem and you're divisive and schismatic. Liberal--liberal Anglicanism in England back in the 60's was in its heyday and there were some evangelicals in the Anglican church and they thought...Well, we need to move in to the Anglican church and get a hold of this thing and partner up with these brothers, they're our brothers. We can't let things divide us, we're all one church.
And it was David Martyn Lloyd-Jones who stood up and said this is wrong. You've got to separate. And he was vilified and he was marginalized and he was pushed out, but he was right as time has proven because whatever evangelicalism was there has succumb to the power of liberalism and the pollution of the church.
You can look at the American denominations...the Presbyterian historic denominations of the Presbyterians, and the Methodists and the Episcopalians and even largely the Lutherans and others and you can see the tremendous slide. And it goes back. They invited people into their schools, in their seminaries to teach. They said they were Christians but they were wrong and they came in and they stole the institutions and sent them right down the drain. This is deadly stuff. And now you even have evangelical churches that are designing their churches to make unbelievers comfortable.
This is frightening stuff. And I guess I feel at this point, I've got nothing to lose anyway, I need to...I have to be accountable to the Lord, it's just time to stand up and say this...this has got to be brought to the test of Scripture. You can have a thing called Amsterdam 2000, you can have 5,000 so-called evangelists and celebrate all this unity, but who's finding out whether these people are Christians? They come from Catholicism and orthodox groups and fringe groups and all kinds of strange groups and even some cults. I talked to a man even this week who said he thinks there's going to be many Mormons in heaven. This is continuing to escalate.
And I guess it's time to just stand up and say there has to be a line drawn. The issue of who is truly a Christian is at the very center of the church's life and ministry. This has to be protected. There isn't any fellowship between light and darkness, is there, 2 Corinthians 6? There isn't any concord between Christ and Satan. Two can't walk together unless they be...what?...agreed. You have to come out from among them and be ye separate and touch not the unclean thing.
And here is the church absorbing all of this. And now it's so confusing that the church itself doesn't even know who's a Christian and frankly I don't think they particularly care as long as you say you believe in Jesus. A friend, Iain Murray who is a gifted theologian and a great biographer, wrote the massive two-volume biography of Martyn Lloyd-Jones has also written on Jonathan Edwards and many others, he is a very esteemed Englishman and has been here many times, we've spent many hours together, has written a new book called Evangelicalism Divided in which I read it, just devoured it over the last few weeks while I was in Italy in the plain, in the back of the bus, in the room, everywhere because it just consumed me. Murray is tracking the twentieth century decline of evangelicalism and it's a book of history that is very, very revealing. And Murray says, and I think he's absolutely right, he says, the inability of the evangelical church to distinguish between a Christian and a non-Christian is quote: "The greatest failure of professing Christianity in the English-speaking world in the twentieth century," end quote.