"Chuck Fromm Is...."
If you were reading the news last week, they were discussing this "bible study" that was being threatened with shut down and fines by the local government all over the place! Well it turns out this wasn't a circle of beleaguered bible believers but a very deeply connected Calvary Chapelist, Chuck Fromm who is a nephew of Chuck Smith! Fromm used to own Maranantha music, and holds a Phd from Fuller University.
The meeting was no BIBLE STUDY but CONTEMPLATIVE, which is admitted in the articles:
"They don't think noise or traffic issues are to blame for the citation. There is no music, and the meetings, they say, are largely "contemplative."
Now realize CHUCK SMITH JR. is the ONE leading these Bible studies! Chuck Fromm is a follower of Chuck Smith Jr, Chuck Smith's Emergent son. This is admitted on Fromm's own website:
"Brad Dacus, President of the Pacific Justice Institute (pacificjustice.org), is representing Chuck & Stephanie Fromm, who were fined $300 by the city of San Juan Capistrano for holding a “regular religious meeting” in their home and would need a CUP before doing it again. They were cited in May for holding a Sunday morning Bible Study that drew about 40 people, many of them former members of Calvary Chapel Capo Beach, and Chuck Smith, Jr. has been leading the Bible Study. The arbitrary enforcement of this bad ordinance is egregious and needs to be changed. They were told they would be fined $500 for each additional gathering. They go to Orange County Superior Court in October."
Brad Dacus who is representing them and from the Pacific Justice Institute, as you will see on the original news4themasses link, has been to many Costa Mesa Calvary Chapel conferences. Lest some think that Chuck Smith totally rejects what his son teaches and what he is doing, he does not. While they "parted ways" on the surface, read this part of the LA Times article carefully....
"He stresses how much he loves his son, regrets that he didn't spend more time with him as he grew up: "Surely he's not a clone, and I respect and admire him for that. There's nothing shoddy about his ministry at all."
He shrugs off the controversy as the result of critics who "get on and blog their ignorance," adding: "If you don't march to their drumbeat, they begin to pick at you, and once you put on that hypercritical mode, you can find plenty of things to criticize."
Reminded of the memo he issued cracking down on his son's views, the father replies, calmly and amiably, that he and his son are just aiming for different audiences, and he doesn't want to alienate the one he has. He says their relationship is stronger than ever, even deepened by the controversy.
"I don't feel that he's an apostate at all.
If he would begin to question that Jesus is the son of God, then I would be concerned."
"Chuck Smith Jr. is pastor at Capo Beach Calvary, which recently removed itself from the Calvary Chapel fellowship of churches—creating more online speculation about possible controversy. Smith Sr. denied any rift. He said that Capo Beach’s ministry is directed toward the postmodern generation, and that style of ministry does not fit within the more conservative Calvary Chapel model."
Sounds like his son is being prepared for the future probably by Chuck Smith himself, and while Chuck Smith Sr separated himself from his son, to placate the mainstream Calvary Chapel members who weren't yet ready for such overt displays of Catholic religiosity, he obviously is OK, with him being a teacher of younger folks.
If anyone wants to know how far gone into Emergent and Catholicism that Chuck Smith Jr is, see here at his website. On the Reflexion video, are some of videos illustrating his teachings, the background looks like he could be at the Fromm home. On his blog, you can see endless discussions of contemplative techniques:
"Quiet sitting will allow us to identify these voices. We will learn to separate one from the other. We will learn to tell the difference from our thoughts, our memories and the voice of God. When these thoughts of ours arise we simple recognize them as thoughts and then return to our breath. Out thoughts will rise and fall; they will come and go."
Here on his Reflexion website, Chuck Smith Jr. comments back to a self-confessed Catholic monk:
"But I have not left the Evangelical church. Then, again, it is difficult to say exactly what I am. I think it is possible to grow in Christ to a place where labels no longer mean anything. I frequently miss the liturgy of the hours that I attended when staying for a month in a hermitage a few years ago. I think if the Protestants who disparage Roman Catholicism would take a closer look at what Catholics actually say and pray before God, they might be surprised to find how it is filled with scripture and fully glorifies God–especially in respect to the Trinity and Incarnation. Also, the one person who has had the most profound influence on my growth in Jesus Christ was a devout monk who lived at the hermitage. He had intense theological training, which marinated in thirty-five years of contemplative spirituality. From our very first conversation, he greeted me with acceptance and the love of Jesus. I never failed to hear or see Jesus in him.
So what am I? I’ve heard it said that I am a Catholic (even though I haven’t taken any Catachism classes or ever attended a mass at any Catholic church–can you “get Catholicism” just by riding on a public bus?), emergent, and new age. But as far as I’m concerned, none of those labels define me. If my love for other Christians and the enjoyment of conversing about Christ with them crosses denominational and sectarian boundaries, does that exclude me from Evangelicalism?"
Read that one over acouple times, this is what the man leading the "bible studies" at the Fromm home believes...
Chuck Smith Jr. has done the sign of the cross, and has gone to Catholic retreats before. He used to be pastor of Capo Beach Calvary Chapel and here was a picture of a "prayer-station" at that church during his tenure.
Here is another quote showing his false teachings:
"In a January 15th sermon, Calvary Chapel Pastor Chuck Smith Jr. ended his message by giving the sign of the cross, a Catholic gesture. In light of the following statement by Smith Jr., this is not too surprising: In his book, The End of the World As We Know It, ... he stated:" More and more Protestant Christians—and we are way behind the Roman Catholics on this score—are discovering a new, yet old way of reading the Bible: lectio divina." p. 103
It appears that Chuck Smith Jr. has jumped on the contemplative/emergent bandwagon."
So going back to Fromm and his story about a persecuted Bible study, obviously this is no "normal" Bible study....As I wrote on the news4themasses blog in the comments, this all seems to be a "set up" to me probably with even deeper deceptions attached to it then we know at this time. Remember how the "order out of chaos" thing works where they take something to the extreme, so laws are passed and something is "normalized"? Well wouldn't some desire the "normalization" of gov't involvement and "control" of Bible studies? Was that the goal? Well it seems to be be heading that way. Otherwise why lie to people about the nature of this group, which is Emergent-Catholic contemplative? Did you notice the Emergent "Catholic" art and candles in the top video?
And why is Chuck Smith's son and Chuck Fromm involved too? Makes one really wonder and what is sad is all the Christians reading this in the news thinking this was a group of true bible believers who are being oppressed!