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Teachings of Arnold Murray

Submitted: 9/18/2009
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Question: I have a family member who has latched onto the daily 'Shepherd's Chapel' bible teaching, by Arnold Murray. I believe he is quite dangerous, mixing truth with unsound exegesis. For example, He interprets Gen. 1:2 to be a second earth age (Gap Theory), and that we existed with God in spirit form, and that to be 'born again' means that our spirit bodies are sent down to earth to live in the infant fleshly bodies that are prepared for us. Also, he states that Eve had physical relations with Satan, and bore Cain, and that men survived Noah's 'little ole flood,' the mark of the beast is in one's mind only, not a literal mark, no physical resurrection of the body, Judas was murdered, and so on. If you disagree with Murray, my relative says that Murray has read the original manuscripts (which I have discovered are margin notes by Ginzberg and 'Ginzberg's Massorah', a set of notes that belong to original manuscripts of The Bible. Ethelbert William Bullinger, the editor of the notes and appendixes to The Companion Bible. As far as I can discern, these 'notes' were written by scribes down through the years to help the next generation decipher and translate them, and not by the prophets and apostles themselves), and thus has 'deeper' insight into the Bible. I have researched the effect Murray has upon his viewers. They, like my relative, think that any criticism of Murray just means that I haven't read the deeper meanings into the scriptures that Murray has, and therefore I am still immature in regards to my being a Christian. How do I go about gently refuting the doctrine of Murray? It seems as though my relative wants to bring up these topics without my asking to discuss it, as though it is to correct my understanding of the scriptures with the 'deeper' insights Murray has imparted. If I disagree, I am looked upon with barely disguised pity. What's more troubling however, is that we used to have good, productive discussions about the scriptures, until Arnold Murray came along.

Answer: We don't know anything about the teachings of Arnold Murray. We do know that we live in the time when Jesus said, 'Beware of false prophets.' There is certainly no shortage of them today. As for how to refute his teachings, the only answer the Bible gives us is 'speaking the truth in love.' Speaking the truth is not enough. We must speak out of a sincere desire to see people set free from error and deception. Of course, even if you do that, there is no guarantee that they will respond. Some people are given over to error and, frankly, there is no hope for them. The Bible says, 'The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders,10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie,12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness' (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12).