Calvary Chapel: Truth or Consequences!

CC Tent

By now most of church is aware of the split between Brian Brodersen/ Calvary Costa Mesa and the Calvary Chapel Association. Unfortunately, most of the church does not know the facts. Because CCCM owns not only the name, but significant resources as well [see https://emergentwatch.com/2016/11/08/calvary-chapels-brian-brodersen-his-influence-and-control/] – they have the “big microphone”, (so to speak), and essentially drown out other voices. In addition, there has been deception, via censorship of opposing voices, in what many may think are open, honest social media forums.

The real reason Brian has “resigned” from the CCA is because they were ready to remove him. No doubt the CCA had witnessed his continual compromises with, and endorsements of numerous false teachers. The final straws were, first his endorsement of women in the pulpits teaching men and women [see below] and then his apparent disdain for Bible prophecy, for the Calvary Distinctives, and his insulting comments about Calvary Chapel founder Pastor Chuck Smith at the Northwest Pastors Conference [NWPC] on Sept. 26-27.

See https://emergentwatch.com/2016/10/24/calvary-chapel-pastors-conference-2016-leadership-departing-form-gods-word/

Brian’s comments at the NWPC were in fact only the latest incident, in what has been an ongoing series of compromises. From endorsing false teachers to partnering with apostate churches in ecumenical “outreaches“, to advocating women in the pulpits teachings man – Brian has gone the way of the emergent/seeker-friendly churches. [See https://emergentwatch.com/ ]

 In what is probably his most egregious error to date, Brian pulls a fictional scenario seemingly out of thin air, to justify his inversion of the Apostle Paul’s prohibition of women teaching men in the church. In his 10/6/16 Article: “Further thoughts on Women in Ministry“; See https://calvarychapel.com/resources/article/view/further-thoughts-on-women-in-ministry/#.V_wbmQAwJpQ.twitter

Brian claims a new alleged historical “context”: that it was because women “were trying to take over the church”, that such prohibitions were necessary. The dangers of this reinterpretation should be obvious. If such a fictional scenario can be utilized to change the meaning of these verses, what verses will be next?

The truth is Brian is the one who has made the division within CC by departing from the solid biblical foundations established by Pastor Chuck. “Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, CONTRARY TO the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them.” – Romans 16:17 Then, when his errors are exposed, he completes his departure by creating his own version of “Calvary Chapel”.

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In Brian’s “Update” of 11/6, [See https://calvarychapel.com/resources/article/view/an-update-from-calvary-chapel-costa-mesa/where he announces his resignation, he makes several statements that are not true. When he says of CCA, that, “We are not agreed on the direction that the ministry is to go”, he speaks an understated truth. But then adds: “Doctrinally we are all in agreement with a few minor differences on a few secondary issues. No one has, in any way, deviated from historic biblical doctrine, or from what might be called Calvary’s core values or from what we know as the Calvary Distinctives” – This is most definitely not true.

If there was no problem of Brian deviating from biblical doctrine or from Calvary’s core values, there would be no reason for the CCA to even consider removing him, as they indicated in their letter the CC pastors of 10/31/16.

In his divisive “Update”, Brian proclaims: “We will also put on our annual Pastors and Leaders Conference, as well as other conferences…” Then the Bombshell: “We will be establishing the Calvary Chapel Global Network, which will be a place for like-minded pastors to enjoy fellowship and be a part of something greater…” and then, after creating this huge split, he has the audacity to claim: “Having said all that, let me make this perfectly clear: this is NOT a call to “choose sides”. There are no sides.” He ends by cloaking his ambitions in praises for Pastor Chuck!

The CCA, on their part, have tried to maintain unity as much as possible. Yet they have not been transparent in their dealings with the church at large, and I believe this will not work to their advantage nor sustain the trust of the flocks.

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Personal Notes:

It is apparent that Brian has, for some time now, felt he doesn’t need to be accountable to anyone, not even his brothers in the CC association. NOTE that the CCA is the one and only organization set up by Pastor Chuck to oversee the entire CC movement. But now Brian, as senior pastor of CCCM, controls an immense amount of resources – [see above] Now he has broken off from the CCA to start his own seeker-friendly, ecumenical version of Calvary Chapel II!

Probably with the help of his good friend, (TBN partner) Phil Metzger, who runs the CC Bible College in Europe – [see: https://emergentwatch.com/2016/09/08/calvary-chapel-europe-leader-joining-hands-with-catholics-and-tbn-leaders/ ] I believe that Brian will likely try to bring the CCs in Europe under the dominion of his vision of “The Calvary Chapel Global Network“, as he tries to project the image of being the “authentic” Calvary Chapel.

If you think Brian Brodersen’s promotion of Eugene Peterson, Nicky Gumbel and Brian Houston is OK… If you have no problem with Rick Warren and his ‘Purpose Driven’ systems theory… If you think contemplative prayer and ecumenicalism is just fine… THEN – you’ll probably love Brian’s new “Global Network”!

NOTE: Brian’s devotees are busy at damage control on the CC websites and on social media. See https://calvarychapel.com/resources/article/view/calvary-chapel-rumor-control/

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The following was CCA’s response that came out after the huge outcry about Brodersen’s “Comments” at the NWPC.

NOTE: Here are some of the points in CCA’s letter to pastors, dated 10/31/2016

Since Chuck’s passing there may be pastors who have thought about some of our values, such as expository teaching, and no longer hold to the Calvary Chapel approach. There may be pastors who no longer embrace our leadership style, or our view of the Lord’s soon appearing and our emphasis on preaching about the rapture of the church, or our view of male leadership and the New Testament’s prohibition of women teaching men…”

“We now feel the need for the Council members to speak with one voice. As our signatures to this letter attest, we are steadfastly committed to our roots, and want to clear up any confusion…”

Any matters having to do with the movement as a whole, or church information changes and affiliation matters need to contact [CCA] The Calvary Chapel Association at admin@calvarychapelassociation.com”.

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8 thoughts on “Calvary Chapel: Truth or Consequences!

    1. Factually, Brian departed years ago and has been pretty much doing his own thing, as much as he thought he could get away with. He is now recognized and marked as the one who has caused the division. Meanwhile, WHO is considering God’s precious kids, who are caught in the middle – Who is a genuine pastor?

    1. I don’t believe there is any such publicly available list. I do know that Brian has been making allies everywhere he could, and is probably soliciting many to join his rogue “network”. Also I know that many of the ‘new crop’ of CC pastors – those who want to be freed from the restraints of the Calvary Distinctives, and be able to do whatever they want – these will join him.

  1. What Chuck Smith became aware of early on was the need to be grounded in the word of God.
    The Calvary Chapel Movement grew out of that important emphasis and it continues to this day.
    The word of God is foundational to the church and the spiritual growth of believers.
    If we pick and choose what to teach then we are opening it up to man’s interpretation and disregarding the Holy Spirit to teach.
    But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’
    We need to give God the glory to continue to move in the hearts of believers hearing the word of God and allowing The Holy Spirit to teach as Jesus proclaimed before His crucifiction.

    1. Yes, I believe one of big reasons Calvary Chapel has been blessed and grown such, is because of the faithfulness to God’s Word – His whole Word.
      Topical sermons or other formats may be fine occasionally, but can never replace the verse by verse, line by teaching of the entire Bible. When you begin to pick and choose what seems “relevant” or popular topics to preach on, you can quickly become a people pleaser or ear tickler.

  2. duke km

    20 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will[e] believe in Me through their word; 21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22 And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: 23 I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

    Jesus prayed to God regarding saints,us, to be one !!!

    Whatever the reasons it may be, If Calvary Chapel is divided like this, this certainly does not glorify God, certainly it’s not the model church like the early church. When we have Agape love which makes us to be one. Apparently we left the Agape love. Jesus rebuked the church of Ephesus, If you do not have Love, I will remove the candlestick from you, it means that the church without Love is the church without Jesus because Jesus walks among the candlestick, therefore Jesus said Remember where was I fallen, Repent, and Return to the first Agape Love. DK

    1. That is the most abused verse of late. We are NEVER told to have UNITY with error, aberrant teachers or their teachings! On the contrary, we are told: Therefore, “COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM AND BE SEPARATE, SAYS THE LORD. DO NOT TOUCH WHAT IS UNCLEAN, AND I WILL RECEIVE YOU!” – 2Cor. 6:17 Unity with error is NOT “love”. Unity with error is error! Beyond this, Brian Brodersen is the one who made the division by departing from Calvary Chapel’s biblical foundations. “Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, *CONTRARY TO THE DOCTRINE which you learned, and avoid them.” – Rom. 6:17

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