QUESTION: Dr. Couch, why is Southern Evangelical Seminary featuring Hank Hanegraaff and touting him as they do? They are inviting him to speak (probably on Mormonism) at their next Apologetic Conference. Dr. Norman Geisler is a Dispensationalist and Hank so opposes it. I don’t understand. What do you say?
Answer: The argument of the school is probably that Hanegraaff is coming to speak on an area that would not conflict with what the school teaches. But I have a problem with that. I have always held fairly consistently that I want only those who are correct on their overall view of the Bible to speak for me. There are a few times that this did happen but not often.
Hanegraaff is a flaming allegorist and a preterist, though he seems to deny this. He is not a biblicist! And because he is so opposed to dispensationalism, the clear doctrine of the rapture, and other eschatological issues, I could not have him come and address even Mormonism. I have learned through the years that if one is off on certain important parts of Scripture, he will have a failure or deficiency in another part of the Word of God!
(1) Discernment, (2) Consistency, and (3) strong biblical Exegesis must be maintained by seminaries and churches. There can be no doctrinal bending of the truth. The apostle Paul told the Ephesian elders (in the Greek text) that he “did not himself keep away from distinctly teaching” to them the entire will (purpose, boulan) of God (Acts 20:27). Note that the word “will” is in the singular. He did not fail to give them the whole, the entirety, of all of the Word of God! He then reminded the elders that their job was “to be on guard” not only for themselves but for the whole flock of God entrusted to them (v. 28).
Thus, there was to be no slippage, on compromise, no this or that in teaching the complete Bible.
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch