An Open Letter To A Street-Preaching ‘Pastor’ Who Uses Profanity
I penned the following letter in Feburary 2019 in hopes to convince Pastor Aden Rusfeldt to abandon both his use and defense of unbecoming language while supposedly preaching the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. I am not the first to confront Mr. Rusfeldt. Pastor Aaron Brummitt admirably confronted him at the 2017 Atlanta SOAPA Conference in a widely publicized formal debate addressing, ‘Harsh Words & Railing’. Moreover, many trusted voices in the street preaching community have openly condemned this behavior. Thus, the progression of confrontation communicated by the Lord Jesus in Matthew 18 has more than been satisfied. Yet, Mr. Rusfeldt and others of his ilk, obstinately reject correction and consequently refuse to repent, but rather continue to excuse this reprehensible practice. Many of the arguments that Mr. Rusfeldt uses are common among street preachers who justify such language. My hope in making this public is to present sound Biblical and philosophical arguments to counter this erroneous and heretical reasoning…
Dear Pastor Aden,
As I promised, I’ve prepared the following rebuttal to address what I deem, as inappropriate language while preaching in the open-air. What I’ve written below is certainly not exhaustive and I’ve purposely avoided being redundant by disregarding previously established points, unless clarification has been requested or necessary. I’ll attempt to systematically address, as I see it, the foundational issues.
As you stated in your correspondence with me via e-mail…
“You do misunderstand my position from your first e-mail. My point is, I’m NOT having authority over the Universal body of Christ in this area…” -Aden Rusfeldt (claiming no one has the authority to accurately or absolutely determine sinful language in preaching)
No, Pastor, I did not misunderstand you; I perfectly understood what you were attempting to communicate. Specifically, you take issue with men like Pastor Brummitt (or me) who conclude there are words which you and others either use or defend while open-air preaching that are inappropriate or sinful. You have categorically denied anyone can legitimately make such accusations.
The premise undergirding this fundamental disagreement appears to be two-fold:
1) You propose that terms/phrases that can be defined as synonyms for Scriptural words/phrases cannot be condemned. Everyone uses synonyms for Scriptural words, therefore, if any Scriptural synonyms are permitted, then all Scriptural synonyms must be allowed.
2) Also, you avow that no one has the authority to make a list of permissible or impermissible synonyms as they cannot be absolutely known and/or universally applied.
These two assertions, for the most part, are demonstrably false as I will attempt to prove in the following arguments.
In my first e-mail, I didn’t misunderstand your point regarding authority. I was merely attempting to expose the numerous crippling contradictions of your thesis. I will address that in a moment, but first may I graciously point out that your position fails to make a vital distinction between the universal authority to regulate behavior and the universal authority to determine and judge what is sinful. This failure to define and clarify, I believe, has gendered much confusion. True, no man has universal authority to mandate speech for the entire Body of Christ, nevertheless, this doesn’t mean a standard does not exist. Nor does it mean when a believer deems the speech of other street-preachers is sinful he cannot act in accordance with his conscience (warning, reasoning, and if need be, separating from those he believes are sinful). To demand all open-air preachers have liberty to use an endless variety of questionable words/phrases as they preach but deny others the liberty of conscience to express outrage, warn, and separate from what they consider as sinful, is essentially to violate the so-called liberty you claim to honor. Without question, you can disagree with our conclusions. You can claim that God Himself disagrees with us. However, you wax philosophically hypocritical to condemn us for acting in accordance with what we believe while you plead for liberty of conscience.
Your position, whether you’re aware of it or not, is essentially moral neutrality in speech. Yet, moral neutrality is a demonic fallacy, an age-old humanistic device to undermine the Scriptural teaching of absolute moral standards. In fact, it’s impossible to plead for moral neutrality while insisting all remain morally neutral. This is so because to impose neutrality is to violate moral neutrality. It’s very much like men insisting there is no absolute truth while violating their own philosophical rhetoric by establishing the absolute that there is no absolute truth. Both in the debate with Pastor Brummitt and in our personal correspondence, you, in effect, argue that each of us should basically respect other open-air preachers’ points of view in regards to speech (making no absolute moral judgement, each following his personal conviction). You also imply, however, that any point of view other than yours (and others who practice using questionable language while preaching) is legalistic and essentially tyrannous. If we disagree with your stated position—that God grants all a ‘great liberty of words’ (including speech we deem filthy and unholy) and that we should be non-judgmental and simply let God-sort-it-out-in-the-end—then you openly dismiss our point of view as invalid. Thus, your argument is self-refuting and conspicuously commits philosophical suicide; it self-destructs because it rejects our position for disagreeing with yours. Amazingly, you are even willing to ‘debate’ about something you claim no one can absolutely know and judge. This is absurd, as debate presupposes accurate, comprehensible, identifiable conclusions regarding the topic debated. For example, if a man claimed no one truly knows the location of Africa, nor could anyone provide accurate directions to find it, it would be utterly futile and illogical to debate with others over the whereabouts of Africa, much less provide a map.
I propose the Bible-believer’s position should be something altogether different. I confidently assert all Christians have both the authority, yea the moral obligation, to unequivocally determine what sort of speech is sinful and what sort of speech is not. I also insist God can and will reveal this truth to all who truly care to know. Remember, Jesus clearly warned us in Matthew’s Gospel…
“But I say unto you, that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” −Matthew 12:36-37
If men, and Christians in particular, cannot know the difference between lawful and unlawful speech then God cannot hold them accountable for every word, indeed, every idle word that they speak. Hence, the ridiculous suggestion that we cannot know what sort of language is sinful or not while preaching is absolutely proven invalid by this one statement by the Lord Jesus Christ. Moreover, if as you assert, “No one has the authority to make a list of synonyms—what synonyms can be used and which ones cannot”, it stands to reason that ‘no one’ would include you. Hence, if you, as your stated view claims, cannot determine what synonyms are lawful and which are not, then you should refrain from using any Biblical synonyms while preaching as you might mistakenly use something unlawful. All this extra-biblical pontificating about what constitutes a ‘hardball’ and ‘softball’ street-preacher (Mr. Rusfeldt’s words, and a classification, I might add, that’s completely foreign to Scripture) cannot be objectively verified, according to you, because no one can actually know exactly what Biblical synonyms are lawful for others to use. Do you see the folly of your position? Claiming that your view only addresses the issue of ‘universal authority over the Body of Christ to establish a list of acceptable and unacceptable synonyms’ does not absolved you from the absurd and self-conflicting implications of your theory. Lies and deception are always riddled with inconsistency, while the beauty and purity of divine truth is always confirmed by its consistency.
The truth is–I can make a list and you can make a list as well, Pastor Aden. Pastor Brummitt can make a list too, along with Joel Osteen and Jed Smock and anyone else for that matter. To suggest otherwise is to refuse men the God-given right to determine what sin is and sin isn’t. Granted, simply because someone compiles a list of appropriate and inappropriate synonyms doesn’t mean their conclusions are true. Yet, if anyone actually knows the mind of God, he will be right. If not, he will most certainly be misguided. Nonetheless, every man is morally bound to determine what is holy and what is unholy, even regarding speech. Moreover, it is wholly reasonable to assume these moral absolutes are knowable via God, His Word, and His indwelling Spirit. Again, this is self-evident.
“Therefore, if synonyms are banned, then NO ONE should use the word ‘homosexual’ anymore, right? Or the word lesbian.” -Aden Rusfeldt
Again, this is a terribly flawed argument, namely—if any synonyms are permissible then all synonyms must be permissible—or—if one uses any synonyms, then one must allow all synonyms.
This is a lie, it is a fallacy of hasty generalization. When expressed as a syllogism the deductive reasoning is easily exposed as defective…
Premise 1—Some Bible synonyms are permissible.
Premise 2— All street preachers use Bible synonyms.
Conclusion—Therefore, all Bible synonyms are permissible.
Both premises 1 and 2 are true. However, the conclusion cannot be reasonably deducted from the two respective premises. Simply because some Bible synonyms are permissible and all street preachers presumably use synonyms does not necessarily establish that all Bible synonyms are permissible. This is quite easy to understand. I reject the idea that all Biblical synonyms are permissible simply because they are synonyms for Scriptural words. I propose that some synonyms for Biblical words are clearly right and others are plainly wrong.
Before we delve too deeply into how we can know what synonyms we can use while preaching, it’s important that our terms be strictly defined to avoid confusion. A distinction should be noted between spoken and written language, or words and speech. A word is a written or printed orderly arrangement of character(s), referred to as letters, that represent an utterance which signifies things, thoughts, and/or ideas. However, words, though they may represent something lawful or unlawful, alone have no intrinsic moral value. In the same sense, a bottle of wine, a cigarette, a loaded gun, or a marijuana plant are all amoral until they are used or misused by a moral agent. Likewise, words are spoken by moral agents, which constitutes speech. Also, speech is framed in context and is spoken with underlying intents and motives. Thus, it is the moral agent that attaches moral value to all speech. All human behavior, whether actions, thoughts, motives, or speech, must logically hold intrinsic moral value. Therefore, all human utterance is either moral or immoral. If not, then it would be impossible for God to demand we differentiate between acceptable and unacceptable speech. For example…
“But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.” −Colossians 3:8
“In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.” −Titus 2:7-8
You’ve confidently proclaimed, over and over, “We 110% do not cuss! Cussing is SIN! It is pure slander for anyone to say I or anyone in our church cusses.”
Not to belabor the point, but the conflicting, self-refuting nature of your position is again bleeding-thru. How, may I ask, can you confidently claim you do not cuss? You must have some standard whereby you make this assured claim. Remember, law is required to not only expose disobedience but also to define obedience. Thus, you cannot claim to refrain from cussing unless you’ve absolutely defined it by some standard. Not only that, you assert anyone who differs with your view, or accuses you of cussing by their standard, are guilty of the sin of slander. This flies in the face of your stated view of ‘no one has the authority to make a list of lawful or unlawful synonyms as they cannot be absolutely known and universally applied’. Notice, you both claim to know and you, without hesitation, quickly apply your view by demanding all honor your standard or be charged with slander. Sir, you are essentially imposing your standard for lawful speech on us! Frankly, it’s difficult to believe your rhetoric when you apparently don’t believe it yourself. I will concede you do not believe you’re using filthy language because your definition is different than almost everyone’s definition. I agree, according to your stated view, you can believe you are not cussing but you cannot be consistent and demand I believe you are not cussing. I’m thankful you don’t use the ‘sh_t’ or ‘f__k’ words. In all honesty, I can’t really fathom why not, seeing you use the awful term ‘c_cks_cker’, and other assorted profane idioms, etc. So, please understand, I believe you use profanity and it thoroughly disgusts me. I also believe it to be sin and is a manifestation of a much deeper spiritual problem.
Hence, consistent with your doctrine of moral neutrality, you may with great confidence exercise your liberty to use such disgusting words in preaching and refuse to acknowledge it is profanity. Likewise, I’ll appeal to my liberty of conscience to wholeheartedly condemn you for doing so. Like it or not, this is the end of your stated philosophy if you will be consistent.
Thus, let’s delve into how we should make sound judgments regarding language. A governing principle in speech, according to Titus 2:7-8, is to refrain from language that is considered filthy and universally understood, even by worldlings, to be foul, sinful language. If our testimony is damaged, our effectiveness as a witness for Jesus will be greatly hindered. Hence, a mindful and careful stewardship of our speech, speech that cannot be righteously condemned, is essential for maintaining a holy, and therefore effective testimony before not only the church, but the world as well. This is why such a standard is expressed in 1 Timothy 3 regarding spiritual leadership…
“Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without…” —1 Timothy 3:7a
Of course, if we truly represent Christ, the world will hate us, persecute us, and say all manner of evil against us falsely (Matt 5:11; 2 Tim 3:12). Thus, maintaining a sound testimony before them ‘which are without’ is to be understood not as being free from any accusation, because surely the world will accuse, but rather, as being free from any legitimate accusation. I assert, we obviously cannot do this using filthy, unchecked, sexually explicit language that would make demons blush. As the Scriptures teach and Pastor Brummitt so eloquently communicated in the debate–there is nothing new under the sun. There has always been profanity, even in Koine Greek, the original language of the New Testament. Yet, God never moved on the inspired writers to include any such words in the inspired text. In the Scriptures, profanity is always associated with frustration, anger, blasphemy, sin and even denying Christ.
“And the son of an Israelitish woman, whose father was an Egyptian, went out among the children of Israel: and this son of the Israelitish woman and a man of Israel strove together in the camp; And the Israelitish woman’s son blasphemed the name of the LORD, and cursed…” −Leviticus 24:10-11
“But he began to curse and to swear, saying, I know not this man of whom ye speak.” −Mark 14:71
Historically, profanity/swearing has consisted of explicit, offensive, and slang sexual terms and base words that depict or describe excrement. To suggest that God’s Spirit would prompt open-air preachers to incorporate such language into their preaching for holy service is not only unscriptural, it runs contrary to the underlining and historic motivations behind such language…
“Primitive swearing as well as modern swearing invokes sexual and excremental words and subjects; this is a significant fact. In order to appreciate its significance, let us review a few of the central facts. Godly oath-taking is a solemn and important religious act. Man aligns himself under God and in conformity to His righteousness to abide by his Word even as God abides by His Word. Godly swearing is a form of vow-taking. But ungodly swearing is a deliberate profanation of the purpose of the oath or vow; it is light use of it, a contemptuous use of it, to express contempt for God. But ungodly swearing cannot remain merely negative or hostile: it denies God as the Ultimate, but it must posit another ultimate in God’s place. Godly oaths seek their confirmation and strength from above; ungodly swearing looks below for its power. Its concept of the ‘below’ is Manichaean to the core: it is material. Hence, ungodly swearing finds its power, its ‘below’, in sex and in excrement. The association is significant. Now what does this mean, ‘strength comes from below?’ It is sterile to be respectable. It is sterile to be moral. Vitality comes from below. So, when you swear now, you may not take the name of the Lord in vain, you reach, increasingly in modern swearing, to that which is forbidden, to the unconscious, to sex, to excrement. To everything that is ugly and evil, because here is strength. There is thus a religious progression in profanity. And as you study the history of swearing, there is a religious progression. It moves religiously from a defiance of God and a misuse of God’s name to an affirmation of grace from below, a demonic kind of power.” −R.J. Rushdoony
Jesus warned that our words irrefutably reveal our heart as well as our character. Profane language is associated with anything but godliness, even among most sinners. It is base, petty, unintelligent, and represents the worst in human communication…
“A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.” −Luke 6:45
“How then, can we know what we’re to say and not say when we preach?” you may ask. The Christian’s epistemology is founded in divine revelation—or—we know Someone who knows all things, including what specific speech pleases Him and what speech does not. God reveals His Mind to us via His Word and His Spirit. If any man’s ambition is to obtain the knowledge of lawful and unlawful speech it will be through these two divine means.
As I mentioned, the only objective standard we have for a ‘liberty of words’ is the Scriptures…
“If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God…” −1 Peter 4:11a
But this is especially true while preaching/ministering the Gospel…
“For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God…” −John 3:34a
It’s also interesting to point out that the preacher is merely the mouthpiece of God. God-called preachers have no liberty outside of communicating the mind of God. They are not to say anything but what Jesus would say in any given situation. Preachers are simply to speak what God gives them to speak. If preachers cannot absolutely and universally know what words are lawful and unlawful to use in preaching, this presents several glaring spiritual problems, specifically…
1) If preachers cannot absolutely know exactly what Jesus wants them to say or not say, how can they claim to actually speak for God?
2) If preachers are not exactly sure what Biblical synonyms are lawful and unlawful to speak while preaching open-air, how can they safely use any synonyms at all?
3) If we cannot absolutely discern between lawful and unlawful speech, how can we, as the Scriptures teach (1 Cor 14:29; 1 Jn 4:1) accurately judge others who claim to be teaching and preaching for God?
To actually suggest, as a preacher, that God would leave His church ignorant of the exact words and specific method they are to employ preaching the Gospel message, is to admit by default, a very limited understanding of preaching at all. True Biblical preaching is not merely man speaking about God, but God literally speaking through a redeemed and sanctified man. Thus, for true Biblical preaching to occur demands that God, via His indwelling Spirit (Rom 8:9), wholly speaks and God certainly is not at a loss in knowing what sort of speech is holy and what is unholy. To reduce this issue to merely man’s proposed limited knowledge of acceptable vocabulary is to unconsciously divorce God Himself from preaching and unwisely humanize evangelism. Sadly, these are the shocking implications of your stated views. However, after surveying several of your teaching/preaching videos on evangelism, I’m not surprised. I was appalled by your frequent carelessness and flippant Bible interpretation. There are times you seem alarmingly inept when expounding on a Scriptural text, no doubt unconsciously twisting the Bible to justify your erroneous evangelistic presuppositions. I have observed several instances of this, but for the sake of time and space, I’ll only offer three shocking examples…
1) In the ‘Debate on Harsh Words’, under questioning from Pastor Brummitt, you amazingly suggested the Spirit of God could inspire men to call someone a ‘M__therF__cker’. If this wasn’t bad enough, when pressed, you hinted perhaps the Apostle Paul could have referred to the fornicator in 1 Corinthians 5 as a ‘M__therF__cker’. As the questioning continued, you sank even lower claiming the, ‘Two Witnesses’ in the Book of Revelation, would use the term ‘M__therF_cker’. Of course, I’ve already brought this to your attention and you admitted this was a ‘bad example’. However, it’s far worse than simply a bad example. Such a statement is so far from Biblical orthodoxy and the rules of sound interpretation, it reveals an alarming void of the fear of God and a terrifying tendency to twist the Scriptures to win an argument.
2) In a SOAPA teaching session entitled, ‘Furious Rebukes’ you stated that Jesus called the Syrophenician woman who sought Jesus for the deliverance of her daughter, a ‘dog’. First, I assure you, I am not offended with the term ‘dog’, it’s a Biblical word and God uses it elsewhere. However, for clarification, Jesus didn’t actually call this woman a dog, at least not directly. The reference to dog was implied by way of analogy, yet I concede the analogy was potentially offensive and have often pointed this out myself. Granted, teaching that Jesus called this woman a dog, without qualification, is not completely accurate but certainly not unreasonable. Thus, if this was all that was said, it could perhaps be considered taking a little too much liberty with the text, but nothing extreme. However, Pastor Aden, you mindlessly press forward to offer the most bizarre interpretation of Mark 7:27 that I’ve ever heard. In a rant, no doubt passionately driven to undergird your application of ‘furious rebukes’, you quickly remind the audience that God uses the term dogs to describe sodomites (which, I concede is sometimes true). You then astonishingly make the insane leap-in-conclusion that Jesus, by using the term dog in his illustration, is essentially calling out this woman as a ‘filthy faggot’ (your words). This is an absolutely terrible twisting and butchering of the text. Why? First, Jesus’ use of the term dog obviously doesn’t have anything to do with sodomy, He is using the term because she was a Gentile, not a sexual pervert. Finally, if the term dog exclusively means sodomite, how could Jesus call this woman a dog, and consequently a ‘filthy faggot’, unless that’s exactly what she was? Obviously, Jesus never lies and never discerns wrongly. Yet, there is absolutely nothing in the text to indicate she was anything but a desperate pagan mother seeking deliverance for her daughter. This is an embarrassing example of horrendous, slapdash Bible-teaching at its very worst.
3) In the same recorded message, you posed the following rhetorical statement, “People say, ‘Jesus never called anyone a whore!’ But I always say, ‘yes He did, John, chapter 4.” Again, I have absolutely no problem with the Biblical word whore. To have Biblical authority to use a word in evangelizing it is not necessarily required to prove Jesus used that particular word while preaching. All that’s necessary, is that God used it in the Bible–for Jesus, the Living Word, and the Scriptures, the written Word, are inseparable; they are one (Jn 1:1). Yet, you felt it necessary to irrationally equate Jesus pointing out the woman at the well had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband, with actually calling her out as a ‘whore’. The only problem is–Jesus obviously did not literally call her a whore? The amazing thing is, the foundational premise you seek to refute—Jesus never called anyone a whore—you inadvertently highlight and actually prove. This is nothing more than a dishonest handling of the text. Or, if you insist on making this fantastic linguistic equivocation, am I to assume instead of calling promiscuous women ‘whores’ I can merely point out their marital status and still qualify, as you say, as a ‘hardball preacher’? Again, this is clearly another disconcerting case where you have taken far too much liberty when interpreting the Bible to reinforce your doctrinal presuppositions.
The above examples reveal a sad pattern of eisegesis in Scriptural interpretation, or essentially playing fast and loose when handling God’s Word in a presumably unconscious attempt to justify the unjustifiable.
“But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God.” −2 Corinthians 4:2
“Who and why does Anyone have the authority to make a Universal list of not allowed synonyms” -Aden Rusfeldt
The answer is simple–obviously, God has this authority (the ultimate ‘Who’). Moreover, He will and does reveal right and wrong to all Christians, or those with a right heart who care to truly know (the secondary ‘who’). Again, this is indisputable because if God does not reveal an absolute standard for our speech then it’s impossible for anyone to truly obey the Scriptures (the ‘why’). Thus, your above question is soundly answered.
Again, when addressing this absolute, it’s important to delineate between the authority to regulate behavior/discipline sin and the authority to determine what is sin. Of course, no man has absolute, central authority over the universal Body of Christ to regulate all speech and strictly impose discipline for failure to comply. However, as I mentioned before, that does not negate the spiritual fact that a standard for all speech exists and can be known. Furthermore, every individual Christian has not only the authority, but the moral necessity to accurately determine what speech is sinful and what speech is not because God will hold all accountable for what they say, especially while claiming to speak for Him (Jam 3:1).
Granted, though Gospel preachers are wise to cling to and rely upon the Scriptures for authority in their preaching, I admit they’re not limited to merely quoting the Bible. Preaching, especially to sinners, is often enriched by lawful elaboration, explanation, and clarification. Hence, other words, besides Scriptural words, are permissible, but Scriptural words are the only terms that are objectively proven righteous. In regards to extra-Biblical speech the Scriptures teach us…
“Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” −Colossians 4:6
The Spirit of God is the practical Agent of grace. Hence, when we speak, whether we are quoting the Scriptures or otherwise, we should be submitted to and led by God’s Spirit. The Bible says that the Lordship of Christ is a requirement for discipleship and this is verified by the believer’s willingness to be led by the Holy Ghost. Those who refuse to be governed by God’s Spirit prove they are not in a right relationship with God…
“So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his…For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” −Romans 8:8-9, 14
Spirt-filled speaking is typically represented in the Scripture by the Holy Ghost giving the utterance. As I mentioned, true preaching is God speaking through man, not merely man speaking about God. Yet, it’s important to note, that the Spirit of God will never speak in violation of the Scriptures, for the Spirit of God and the Word of God are in absolute unity and are the same in divine essence…
“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” −1 John 5:7
The Holy Ghost, of course, was the divine Agent in the inspiration of the Scriptures (2 Pet 1:21). He always glorifies Jesus, who is the Word (Jn 1:1; 16:14) and He guides believers into all truth (Jn 16:3) and God’s Word is truth (Jn 17:17). Thus, it stands to reason that the Gospel preacher, governed by the Word of God and led by God’s Spirit, will never speak contrary to the Scriptures. His message will be Bible-centered and He will often be heard saying, “The Bible says!”, for the Scriptures are the foundation for His Authority. He will be primarily a Bible-quoter and even when he uses extra-biblical language, it will never be outside the Scripture’s holy parameters and immutable principles.
We would be wise to soberly consider the Book of James, which warns us that…
“If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.” −James 1:26
“And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell…Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.” −James 3:6, 9-12
Knowing that apart from the restraining and inspiring influence of God’s Spirit we are apt to sin with our tongue, it would seem the Holy Ghost would always prompt us to stay very close to the Scriptures. When reading through the Bible and taking a careful overview of the preaching communicated therein, namely the words used by the Patriarchs, the Prophets, the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Apostles. When studying church history and reading the sermons of the Church Fathers, the Reformers and Revivalists–I cannot fathom how anyone could be left with the impression they could use the sort of language you and others use on the streets.
I would tremble to use such language, as even Biblical language quoted verbatim, if not used properly, can misrepresent God. For example, ‘God’ and ‘damn’ are both Biblical terms, yet carelessly spoken together represent blasphemy. Many spiritual dynamics factor into the moral value of speech, including but not limited to: context, emphasis, application and frequency of use (yes, Jesus cleansed the Temple, but not every day). Remember, false teaching is often just selective application of God’s Word or a confusing mixture thereof: Job’s comforters cited the truth, but it was a misapplication. The Apostle Paul, in Acts 23:1-4, was prompted to speak because the law was violated, but unknowingly reproving the High Priest contrary to the law. The Devil quoted Scripture while tempting Christ (Lk 4:10-11). The sons of thunder, James and John, attempted to cite an O.T. Scripture to justify a wrong spirit (Lk 9:54-56). Thus, all we must do, even if we’re quoting the Bible, is pervert (Gal 1:7), or wrest (2 Pet 3:16), or add or take away (Rev 22:18-19) from the plain understanding of the Bible or Bible words to reap judgment. Yet, this appears to be the subtle dynamics behind justifying many words and phrases being used by open-air preachers everywhere.
“He that keepeth his mouth keepeth his life: but he that openeth wide his lips shall have destruction.” −Proverbs 13:3
“Will ye speak wickedly for God? and talk deceitfully for him?” −Job 13:7
When I heard you proclaim at the SOAPA debate, ‘God is P_ssed_ff’ I was shocked and grieved. As I mentioned in my first e-mail to you…
“I propose slang phrases like, ‘God is ‘P_ssed_ff’ in substitution of Scriptural phrases like, ‘God is angry’ or ‘God’s wrath’, confuses rather than clarifies the Scriptural concept of God’s anger. Why? It humanizes, corrupts, and defiles the pure and transcendent nature of God and His holy wrath, reducing it to something akin to sinful men losing their temper. This example, though many would not consider such phrases as brazen profanity, is what I believe is a gross misrepresentation of God. I want no part of public preaching that would be, in my estimation, so cavalier about the holy nature of God.” -Britt Williams
However, those comfortable with such profane and demeaning language like to point out that the word ‘piss’ is in the Bible. “It’s a Bible word!” they confidently say. True, the word piss is in the Scriptures. The English word Piss, in any form is only mentioned eight times in the Scriptures. Twice the term is used by the enemy of God, Rabshakeh, the spokesman for King of Assyria in a threat to King Hezekiah and Israel (2 Ki 18:27; Isa 36:12). It was used here to represent human urine. In all the other six occasions it’s mentioned, it’s used to denote gender with the phrase, ‘He/him that pisseth against the wall’, identifying males. Never is it used to depict anger of any sort, much less divine. The root definition of the Hebrew word, מַיִם or mayim, translated into the English words piss or pisseth, never denote anger of any sort. Hence, attempting to justify the despicable and God-dishonoring declaration, “God is PO’d at you” by the misappropriation of the Scriptural word ‘pisseth’ is completely invalid. Be warned, wresting and distorting the intended meaning of Biblical words is no different than wresting and distorting Biblical passages–both are the work of the devil and constitute perverting the very words of God.
Finally, I found a video of what I assume is King of David Christian Center (the church Aden Rusefeldt pastors) preaching an event called, “Slut-Walk Philly 2017”. To be fair, this is an extreme example. It’s the worst of the videos I viewed, nevertheless it represents what I believe should never be tolerated in an open-air preach. Even though I’m sure the event was very wicked and something akin to a sodomite parade, I found the ‘preaching’ to be almost unbearable to listen to. I’ve condensed the whole into one concise paragraph that I believe represents the overall spirit and language of the video…
“Shame on you co_k-su_king sluts! You’re like sperm-depositories! Shame on you sluts, blow-j_b queens! You semen-guzzling sluts! Hey you c_m-dumpsters, your vagina-is-a-revolving-door, you should be ashamed of yourselves. Shame on you sluts, you open your legs to every man! Shame on you sluts, you treat semen like it’s Listerine! God bless you with a yeast infection! God bless you with herpes and warts in your mouth you nasty sluts, you deserve to be raped! You need to get right with Jesus!” −A Street Preacher from King of David Christian Center, pastored by Aden Rusfeldt
This video, ‘Slut-Walk Event Philly 2017’ is 5 minutes and 44 seconds in duration, containing approximately 1000 words. Yet, amazingly, not one full verse of Scripture was quoted.
“Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.” −Titus 1:9
“But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine…” −Titus 2:1
“For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publickly, shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ.”−Acts 18:28
Even though the Scriptures teach it’s the law that divinely illuminates sin, not one “Thou shalt not..” was heard.
“…that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.” −Romans 7:13
“Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” −Galatians 3:2
The word ‘repent’ was never uttered, but the name of your city, Philadelphia was mentioned several times, even more, as I recall, than the name of Jesus. As documented above, an array of profane insults constituted the vast balance of the ‘preaching’–profane insults, I might add, that Ezekiel or Isaiah or any godly spokesperson for God have never used. Indeed, it’s important to note, hardly any of these words/phrases can rationally be defined as synonyms for Scriptural words/phrases. So, the entire religious façade, the word-game charade that appeals to Bible synonyms to justify profanity suddenly is exposed for what it is—a hypocritical smokescreen to demonically neutralize, confuse, and conceal. The sad truth is, there are several examples on YouTube of you and your church using extreme, brazen extra-biblical terminology, absolutely foreign to Scripture.
A body is merely a vehicle to express a personality. The Body of Christ is commissioned to continue the work of the Lord Jesus Christ on earth and manifest the glory of God. As I mentioned, the man who is a faithful preacher is one who says what Jesus would say and do, nothing more, nothing less.
Please soberly and prayerfully consider the following observations.
• The Scriptures are absolutely void of any Messianic narrative delivered to anyone, anywhere that even remotely resembles, even in the slightest, what is heard in both content and spirit on the video “Slut-Walk Philly 2017”.
• A thorough overview of the entire Bible, examining every public sermon by Prophet, Apostle, and disciple will not yield one example of anything akin to what is heard on the video “Slut-Walk Philly 2017”.
• As an avid student of church history, the Reformation, historic Revivals, and Revivalists themselves, I cannot recall one sermon by anyone in church history laced with such offensive and profane language, none (I should ask you the same question you asked Pastor Aaron Brummitt at the SOPA debate, but in an inverted way, “Do you have a different Holy Ghost than the Prophets, Jesus, the Apostles, the Reformers, the Revivalists, and every spiritual man I’ve ever met? What linguistics license does God give you to be so radically different in speech than everyone in the church of yesteryear?).
With the above points in mind, Pastor Aden, I ask you—back in 2017, as you were preparing to preach the “Philly Slut-Walk”, if it were possible on that day, you could unzip eternity and the Lord Jesus Christ could step out in bodily form and be the featured open-air preacher for the event. At the end of the day, do you suppose Jesus would preach exactly, word for word, what was actually preached at the event in 2017?
If you answer ‘yes’ — I know you are reprobate.
If you answer ‘no’ — you need to thoroughly repent, humble yourself, sit down, be very quiet, and learn of the Biblical Christ.
I will simply end by apologizing. I’m sorry I failed to delve more deeply into your ministry before you visited us in November. Had I done so, this all would’ve been avoided. I would’ve never allowed you to fellowship with us without repentance and a complete spiritual house-cleaning (nor will I now). I’m willing to continue our dialogue, if you’re interested. However, there will be no fellowship, no visiting our church, without a very deep and thorough public repentance for the ideas and practices addressed in this letter. I do love you and your family; I have no personal malice against you. My main concern is your spiritual well-being and the honor of Christ—so I call you to repentance. May God convict you of sin and misrepresenting His dear Son, Jesus Christ.
Consider yourself warned,