Old Testament History & the Story of Redemption -- Join Professor Gretchen Passantino Coburn
for a graduate level seminary class that provides an exciting, in-depth
exploration of the events, ideas, theology, culture, & revelations
that brought God's story of redemption alive through the history of the
Jews, the Semitic people who grew from a single family more than 4,000
years ago following their patriarch Abarahm to a nation called Israel
that brought forth the Messiah to reconcile the world to God 2,000 years
Whether you have advanced Bible or theological education or not;
whether you are seeking an accredited graduate degree or simply desire
to know God's Word better; whether you have studied the Bible before or
not; your spiritual life & your understanding of the Bible will be
changed by this exciting course of study under one of the most
knowledgeable Christian apologists today.
This class will provide: Academic rigor coupled with spiritual depth;
Conservative, inerrant approach to scripture as the infallible Word of
God; Current historical, archaeological, & theological researched
lectures, handouts, & publications; Challenging but achievable
written, oral, & group assignments & projects; Spiritually
stimulating theological application; Clear historical background &
memorable historical paradigms.
Prof. Passantino's more than 3 decades of in-depth biblical study
& commitment to personal mentoring toward individual study goal
attainment succeeds in this small class format that facilitates
interaction & tailors the subject matter to the particular interests
& needs of students. This class will satisfy you if you have always
struggled to understand the Old Testament; Don't know how the theology
of the Old Testament relates to the New Testament; Confuse ancient
centuries, cultures, events, societies, & acts of God; Desire to see
how God's eternal plan of redemption is predicted & pre-figured in
the Old Testament; Think you're missing the main value of the Old
Testament in your daily Christian living; Frustrate yourself trying to
understand how the New Testament uses the Old Testament; Commit yourself
to letting the Holy Spirit speak in & through the Old Testament
text in transforming you in Christ.
The tuition cost is $250 for audit; $400 for credit; & TBA for
Faith Seminary credit toward an accredited degree from Faith Seminary.
Textbook cost not included. No pre-requisites required.
Enrollment is strictly limited to facilitate close
student-teacher-student interaction. Reserve your place early to ensure
acceptance. Call Prof. Passantino (949.290.2819) for questions or
Oprah spirituality or Jesus redemption?
Christian newspaper publishers have joined to publish a critique of popular TV entertainment queen Oprah & well-respected cult apologist Richard Abanes has published an outstanding critique of Oprah's spiritual "guru," Ekhart Tolle. As Answers In Action
director Gretchen Passantino explained in a radio interview on
Wednesday, July 16, 2008, "Oprah points people to themselves for
fulfillment. Jesus points people to the cross for salavtion."
Oprah's Gospel, written by Christian journalist Steve Rabey & published by Keener Communications Group
(May 2008), summarizes Oprah's "media mission," reviews the most
prominent spiritual leaders Oprah has hosted on her television talk
show, provides cogent Christian responses to their spiritual claims,
& warns Christians that with Oprah's great media power, people are
extremely susceptible to her "gospel." In Passantino's interview on Lutheran Public Radio'sIssues Etc.,
Passantino noted, "At one time, most people received their spiritual
influence from their parents, their pastor, & their local
congregations. Today people are much more apt to adopt the religion of
In A New Earth, An Old Deception, Richard Abanes
carefully & respectfully untangles the real spiritual needs &
longings people experience from the false answers & solutions
promoted by Oprah's #1 spiritual "guru," religious mystic Ekhart Tolle, whose book A New Earth
has sold more than 4 million copies just since Oprah chose it as her
book of the month in January 2008. Abanes, who has authored nearly 20
books on various apologetics issues, carefully & fully explains
& then critiques all of Tolle's major spiritual beliefs, &
presents a clear, persuasive case for the biblical gospel centered on
Jesus Christ & his redemption for us. On Issues Etc.
Passantino recommended the Abanes book as the best antidote to Tolle's
book, remarking, "Abanes' book is deadly in its rational critique, but
incredibly healing in its affirmation of the transforming power of the
true gospel of Jesus Christ."
Passantino's radio interview is available in a variety of media formats, including on the Internet at Issues Etc.
Mars Hill Clubhas been reborn in Lakewood, California.
Long-time Answers In Action volunteer & Mars Hill Club moderator
Don Stoner hosts a discussion group in the spirit & heritage of the
late Bob Passantino's unique Mars Hill Club.
Although this is not an official Answers In Action event, Don
Stoner's Mars Hill Club is an exciting opportunity for the
philosophically committed to discuss deep issues of faith, philosophy,
theology, & science in a cordial but intellectually demanding
atmosphere of intellectual stimulation.
For full information, check our Calendar & get the upcoming topics, dates, & address for the meetings.
The Book of Romans: A Community Bible Study & Worship Event held weekly in Costa Mesa, CA led by Answers In Action director & co-founder Gretchen Passantino & her husband, Pat Coburn.
Sponsored by Christ Our King Community Lutheran Church, a new church
plant that combines tradtional Lutheran heritage with rich Christian
relationship & fellowship.
Using the stimulating & faith-nurturing insights of pastor & New Testament scholar Dr. N. T. (Tom) Wright, the Bible study follows Wright's Paul for Everyone (Romans). Also included is material from Wright's fascinating lecture series Romans in a Week,
Gretchen & Pat encourage a community of Christian believers bound
together by the Holy Spirit in fellowship & study of God's Word as
given by the Apostle Paul in his letter to the Romans.
In addition to the stimulating Bible study, our community of
believers enjoys traditional, confessional worship as we join together
in prayer, hymn singing, & the confession of our faith. This is not
merely an academic exercise, nor even a simple fellowship time, but by
joining yourself to others who are committed Christians living in
fellowship with other Christians, you will experience worship, siritual
growth, & biblical insight.
Between 6:00 & 8:00 PM, the community Bible study provides for
faith building application as well as solid, contextual teaching from
this pivotal New Testament book. This is not dry, academically obtuse
lecture. This is not vacuous, subjective pseudo-piety. It is a deep
immersion in the world of the early church, under the vision of the
"apostle to the Gentiles." The New Testament comes alive as we bridge
the centuries, cultures, and experiences between the first century
Jewish-Gentile Christians of the Roman Empire & the 21st century
Evangelical Christians of the United States.
Gretchen Passantino has been teaching the Word of God for more
than 35 years. She first taught the Book of Romans with her late
husband & co-founder of Answers In Action, Bob Passantino, in 1974 & has hardly stopped teaching it since. An adjunct professor with Faith Evangelical Lutheran Seminary,
Passantino taught Romans for the seminary several years ago, enjoying
the life-transforming power of that book with her students in a rigorous
academic study. Those who have studied with her over the years, whether
in a formal, challenging academic setting, or in the intimacy of a
small group Bible study fellowship, agree that she brings vivid realism,
sound doctrine, historical insight, contextual sense, & spiritual
application to every class. Pat Coburn, a Faith Seminary student,
is an experienced professional painter by trade, a long-time Christian
by the grace of God. He does not consider himself an expert in biblical
study, but he knows that he loves God, he loves God's people, & he
loves God's Word. Together he and Gretchen focus the study of Romans on
God's power to transform a collection of individuals into a fellowship
community of brothers & sisters in Christ who support, encourage,
& love each other.
If you are looking for both a deep study of God's Word that goes
beyond the mental exercise to spiritual transformation, & a
spiritual exerience of worship & fellowship, please join us. If you
are tired of "church-hopping" & want a community of Christians who
are committed to each other, you will find a family here. Whether you
have been a Christian for years or are still standing on the sidelines,
this experience will bring you closer to God. Whether you have an
enormous amount of knowlege of the Bible or aren't even sure how to find
the book of Romans, you will gain a depth of insight that will change
The Book of Romans: A Community Bible Study & Worship Event
meets every Sunday evening from 6:00 - 8:00 PM in Costa Mesa, CA. Check
our Calendar for the location & other information.
The Secret Exposed! A Christian Response to the Motivational Phenomenon Promoted by Oprah Winfrey & others!
Rhonda Byrne's The Secret Isn't the Answer to Life
is Gretchen Passantino's review & critique of the book, DVD, CD,
& motivational program that is sweeping the country. This is not
just a media hype or Hollywood fad, it is even invading the Christian
church -- being adapted & promoted through Sunday morning messages,
Bible studies, & fellowship groups. What is the Secret? How does it
masquerade as the gospel? How can you answer its claims?
This new Answers In Action article will equip you to respond to this
challenge to Christianity. You can depend on Answers In Action to
provide reliable reporting, cogent analysis, & biblical fidelity.
WEEKLY PRAYER MEETING with Answers In Action Director Gretchen
Passantino and her husband, Pat Coburn, Wednesdays in Costa Mesa, CA.
Sponsored by Christ Our King Community Lutheran Church, a new church
plant combining traditional Lutheran heritage with warm spiritual
fellowship among committed Christians.
"Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one
another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of the righteous is
powerful and effective" (James 5:16).
Prayer is not the useless time waster that you do when there's
nothing else to do. Prayer is empowered by God to establish and extend
His kingdom "on earth, as it is in heaven." Prayer benefits the one who
prays, because it brings us into the presence of God in humility and
service. Prayer benefits the one for whom we pray, because God touches
that person's life with His Spirit. Prayer exalts God because it is
commanded and it is worship.
If you are in Southern California and would like to join Gretchen and
Pat for a brief time of prayer and supplication, we would love to have
you. We meet every Wednesday night from 6 - 7 PM PDT in Costa Mesa,
California. Check our Calendar for location.
Christian Response to Controversial Discovery Channel Special Purporting to Find the Tomb of Jesus & His Family
The Discovery Channel special that first aired Sunday, March 4, 2007, The Lost Tomb of Jesus, produced by award-winner James Cameron & Canadian archaeology documentarian Simcha Jacobovici,
claims there is good probability that an obscure first century Jewish
tomb & tomb boxes (ossuaries) found near Jerusalem in 1980 may
belong to Jesus & his family. Such a supposition would mean that
Jesus did not rise from the dead, fulfilled his life with a wife &
at least one son instead of dying on the cross for our sins, & that
his original apostles & disciples pulled off a tremendous lie
without any successful opposition in the first century.
"After 3 years of careful dialog, study, & evaluation, we have
affirmed the orthodoxy of the core theology represented in the teachings
of Watchman Nee & Witness Lee, published by Living Stream Ministry, & embraced by Christians in churches commonly known as the local churches," announced Gretchen Passantino, co-founder & director of Answers In Action.
"It has been more than 20 years since we had examined these teachings,
& we are grateful for the opportunity to reconsider our conclusions
by a much lengthier, more comprehensive, & better informed lengthy
study process. Direct interaction with leadership was an important
aspect of the process."
Nee & Lee's teachings in China formed the basis for a distinctive
move of Chinese Christians that began with Nee's ministry in 1922 &
came to the United States with Lee in 1960. Although the American
movement was largely unknown by Americans for the first decade it was in
the United States, by the 1970s the local churches were attracting
attention from many American Christians who became alarmed at some of
the teachings & practices attributed to the group. This controversy
resulted in numerous critical evaluations of the teachings &
practices, including 2 small booklets by Bob & Gretchen Passantino
& an appendix in the late Walter Martin'sThe New Cults.
Those controversies continue among some today, although the local
churches have gained a hearing and/or re-hearing among some Christian
bodies, such as Fuller Theological Seminary, who have affirmed their essential orthodoxy.
"Although some of our colleagues will initially question the basis
for our re-evaluation, & others will continue to disagree with us, I
am proud for Answers In Action to stand with Hank Hanegraaff &
Christian Research Institute in acknowledging as true brothers &
sisters in Christ those involved with the local churches & Living
Stream Ministry," Passantino announced. She concluded, "Hank & I
both affirm that they are not a cult, their core theology is well within
essential orthodox theology, & our fellowship with them in the
wider Body of Christ is not hampered by secondary issues with which we
or other Christians may disagree."
In essentials unity. In non-essentials liberty. In all things charity. -- St. Augustine
If Christianity should happen to be true -- that is to say, if
its God is the real God of the universe -- then defending it may mean
talking about anything and everything. Things can be irrelevant to the
proposition that Christianity is false, but nothing can be irrelevant
to the proposition that Christianity is true. All things not only may
have something to do with the Christian God, but must have something to
do with Him if He lives and reigns.
G. K. Chesterton (thanks to the Wilberforce Forum)
I believe in Christianity as I believe that the Sun has risen, not only
because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.
-- C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory
Answers In Action is a dynamic
non-profit religious organization training Christians to adopt and
promote a Christian world view in every area of their lives. Answers In
Action was founded by award winning authors Bob
and Gretchen Passantino. Our hope and prayer is that you find this
web site useful and edifying. Answers In Action is supported entirely
by private donations.
The Lord's Servant must not quarrel; instead, he
must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Those who
oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will give them a
change of heart leading to a knowledge of the truth
II Timothy 2:24-26