Author Topic: L. Ray Smith?  (Read 7020 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
L. Ray Smith?
« on: March 30, 2009, 10:41:58 PM »
Before I go rooting through this man's website, does anyone here have an opinion about his teaching? Does anyone know where I can get his bio?

http://bible-truths.com/

Thanks.
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Offline jabcat

  • Admin
  • *
  • Posts: 9107
  • SINNER SAVED BY GRACE
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2009, 10:56:24 PM »
My opinion...a lot of good, some at least questionable, worth discretion.  Like EVERYONE else I know of, I'd say take what he has to say, sift through it, be aware of how your spirit feels about it, and much to benefit from.  My thread "The Seven Wonders of Hell" was taken from his website, his analysis of a John Hagee sermon on hell.  Again, IMO, their discussion forum is a bit too much "Ray-focused" for my taste.

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2009, 12:45:49 AM »
My opinion...a lot of good, some at least questionable, worth discretion.  Like EVERYONE else I know of, I'd say take what he has to say, sift through it, be aware of how your spirit feels about it, and much to benefit from.  My thread "The Seven Wonders of Hell" was taken from his website, his analysis of a John Hagee sermon on hell.  Again, IMO, their discussion forum is a bit too much "Ray-focused" for my taste.

Thanks James,
I want to try getting a feel if the website is even worth the time to sift through. Do know who this guy is? Ex-pastor, layperson? Anytime a teacher is "shrouded in mystery", that's enough right there for me to not bother with any further exploration.
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2009, 02:54:20 AM »
Anytime a teacher is "shrouded in mystery", that's enough right there for me to not bother with any further exploration.
Okay, okay.  I can take a hint.  I'll come clean.  I'm Batman. :cool:

SQ

  • Guest
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2009, 03:08:59 AM »
I definitely think his writings are worth reading but like Jabcat said sift through and discern.
 I haven't found much that is questionable in his writings.
I withdrew my membership from message board, it is way too hard to carry on a conversation there.
Also I forgot to mention Ray is a retired roofer, no degrees as far as I know.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2009, 03:11:08 AM by SQ »

Average_Bear

  • Guest
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2009, 03:16:13 AM »
He gives bits and pieces of his biography. He's never been in any kind of ministry, but says that he went through several traditional type churches over many years. By my calculations he's his late sixties, is married, and has a daughter who is a doctor. He also had a son who died at a young age. His ideas seem to come from a blend of various non-trinitarian groups such as Jehovah's Witnesses (he shares their doctrine of soul sleep, but not annihilation), he clearly believes in universal salvation.

His writing about hell is a real eye opener, and a great introduction to the topic of eternal torment. He obviously spent a lot of time in the library.

Personally, I like his style and sense of humor, and I would definately say his stuff is worth reading. Like anything, take it with a grain of salt, and weigh what he says against scripture and common sense.  He doesn't claim to any special authority or revelation, so read his stuff with discernment.

Offline peacemaker

  • Bronze
  • *
  • Posts: 1043
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2009, 05:36:22 AM »
Anytime a teacher is "shrouded in mystery", that's enough right there for me to not bother with any further exploration.

The "Mystery of Christ" is a contemplative and marvelous exploration!

"Golly Gee Willickers, Batman, to live is to die."

Offline jabcat

  • Admin
  • *
  • Posts: 9107
  • SINNER SAVED BY GRACE
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2009, 05:43:44 AM »
I really wouldn't say he shrouds himself in mystery as much as he just doesn't claim any special education other than from scripture and perhaps God allowing him to see certain things in scripture.  He is upfront that he's a roofer, and actually seems to s/w enjoy the "simpleness" of that, as I've seen him talk about (my words and perception here) those considered wise and highly educated often being blind, and the lowly being given the ability to see and understand.  Mostly, I believe what he has to say is beneficial...I have struggled a little with his view of salvation, as he doesn't seem to necessarily see a moment of conversion, as in "getting saved", as I believe it occurs when someone is given the faith to believe, then the "all things becoming new" begins...new wine, new wineskins, etc.  I think he sees it more as a process (I'm not saying it's not, following conversion)...anyway, I think worth looking...
« Last Edit: March 31, 2009, 09:51:40 AM by jabcat »

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2009, 10:32:49 AM »
I really wouldn't say he shrouds himself in mystery as much as he just doesn't claim any special education other than from scripture and perhaps God allowing him to see certain things in scripture.  He is upfront that he's a roofer, and actually seems to s/w enjoy the "simpleness" of that, as I've seen him talk about (my words and perception here) those considered wise and highly educated often being blind, and the lowly being given the ability to see and understand.  Mostly, I believe what he has to say is beneficial...I have struggled a little with his view of salvation, as he doesn't seem to necessarily see a moment of conversion, as in "getting saved", as I believe it occurs when someone is given the faith to believe, then the "all things becoming new" begins...new wine, new wineskins, etc.  I think he sees it more as a process (I'm not saying it's not, following conversion)...anyway, I think worth looking...

OK. Thanks everyone, that's what I needed to know. I don't care if someone is a roofer as opposed to having a PhD. But if I were to start a website like that, I'd have an up front article of who I was, where I'm from, my "religious" experiences etc. L. Ray Smith, isn't much of a name to go by. Might as well be L. John Doe. I always think of "Pastor" "Dr" Arnold Murray; "Where did you get those credentials Arnold?" "My gift to teach is the only credential that I will give."
http://www.mission.org/jesuspeople/arnmuray.htm
http://www.youtube.com/results?search_type=&search_query=arnold+murray&aq=f

I'm 46. I grew up in California's San Fernando Valley. Growing up, the main influence was John Macarthur. I dropped out of high school, and later got my GED. My main earthy pastor teacher was E. Allen Ratta, formerly of Mountain View Assembly of God, in Las Vegas, NV. And then he and me and my relatives migrated to Belleview WA, where he pastored at the Neighborhood Church AG. This is where he's at right now. http://www.zoominfo.com/people/Ratta_Allen_32908592.aspx
We're both back in Vegas. (I should track him down and say howdy, it's been a few years).
I'm currently being taught by Tommy Bertoli http://www.tommybertoli.com/.
I felt motivated by the Spirit to start off with a very fundamental foundation. Tommy is a very down to earth brass tacks teacher. My other earthly teacher is Steve Gregg http://www.thenarrowpath.com/ who I meet with once a month. Steve was a solid fundamentalist, with ties to Chuck Smith's Calvary Chapel like Tommy. But now he is well out of anyone's shadow.

My point is, I feel as a follower of Christ, I should be up front and out in the open, with no stone left unturned, about who I am.
No one should have to ask who is that guy? If I were to start a website filled with my teachings.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2009, 10:45:11 AM by Brian »
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Offline jabcat

  • Admin
  • *
  • Posts: 9107
  • SINNER SAVED BY GRACE
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2009, 10:38:56 AM »
I hear you.  And I MAY BE WRONG ABOUT HOW RAY SEES SALVATION, but that's sort of how I picked up what he was saying...my perception/understanding.  Don't want to bear false witness against him...if anyone knows anything different about this, I'll gladly be corrected on it  :thumbsup:.

Brian...with the Chuck Smith, Steve Gregg etc. leadership/influence, what do you do with the UR beliefs, especially when talking with Steve?  And what reactions do you get?  Thanks, James.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2009, 11:09:46 AM by jabcat »

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2009, 11:16:35 AM »
I hear you.  And I MAY BE WRONG ABOUT HOW RAY SEES SALVATION, but that's sort of how I picked up what he was saying...my perception/understanding.  Don't want to bear false witness against him...if anyone knows anything different about this, I'll gladly be corrected on it  :thumbsup:.

Brian...with the Chuck Smith, Steve Gregg etc. leadership/influence, what do you do with the UR beliefs?  And what are their reactions?  Thanks, James.

I've never listened to Chuck Smith.
Tommy is as I said, a brass tacks fundamentalist. But he's willing to give me latitude. He knows about my time here, and what's been discussed with Steve Gregg. He trusts my objectivity. As for Steve, He "puts on the Universalist hat" and defends UR, when he gets a caller discrediting it, if the caller doesn't know what he's talking about. The last time we all got together in Vegas, practically the whole 4 hours revolved around the subject of hell. Whish you could've been there, you would have really enjoyed it. He pretty much blasted ET to bits. Tommy doesn't like the idea of ET, but he feels the weight of Scripture teaches it. He does teach Eternal Security, which can be downloaded from his web site, http://www.messiahschristianfellowship.org/index_files/Page346.htm
Which will contain a lot of verses and concepts held by Universalists in my opinion.
Steve is at http://www.thenarrowpath.com/
I encourage everyone to give Steve a listen. All his radio shows are archived. All his many topical lectures are free. Select the February 18, 2009 show in the archive and hear him address Ghenna, and then the third caller is me! (The call screener thought I said my name was "Brad". And then me again, 02/26/09, (first caller) challenging the Rich Man and Lazarus popular interpretation.

For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #11 on: March 31, 2009, 11:20:46 AM »
Anytime a teacher is "shrouded in mystery", that's enough right there for me to not bother with any further exploration.
Okay, okay.  I can take a hint.  I'll come clean.  I'm Batman. :cool:

Which one?
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Offline jabcat

  • Admin
  • *
  • Posts: 9107
  • SINNER SAVED BY GRACE
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #12 on: March 31, 2009, 11:27:00 AM »
I hear you.  And I MAY BE WRONG ABOUT HOW RAY SEES SALVATION, but that's sort of how I picked up what he was saying...my perception/understanding.  Don't want to bear false witness against him...if anyone knows anything different about this, I'll gladly be corrected on it  :thumbsup:.

Brian...with the Chuck Smith, Steve Gregg etc. leadership/influence, what do you do with the UR beliefs?  And what are their reactions?  Thanks, James.

I've never listened to Chuck Smith.
Tommy is as I said, a brass tacks fundamentalist. But he's willing to give me latitude. He knows about my time here, and what's been discussed with Steve Gregg. He trusts my objectivity. As for Steve, He "puts on the Universalist hat" and defends UR, when he gets a caller discrediting it, if the caller doesn't know what he's talking about. The last time we all got together in Vegas, practically the whole 4 hours revolved around the subject of hell. Whish you could've been there, you would have really enjoyed it. He pretty much blasted ET to bits. Tommy doesn't like the idea of ET, but he feels the weight of Scripture teaches it. He does teach Eternal Security, which can be downloaded from his web site, http://www.messiahschristianfellowship.org/index_files/Page346.htm
Which will contain a lot of verses and concepts held by Universalists in my opinion.
Steve is at http://www.thenarrowpath.com/
I encourage everyone to give Steve a listen. All his radio shows are archived. All his many topical lectures are free. Select the February 18, 2009 show in the archive and hear him address Ghenna, and then the third caller is me! (The call screener thought I said my name was "Brad". And then me again, 02/26/09, (first caller) challenging the Rich Man and Lazarus popular interpretation.

Very good Brad  :happygrin: , thanks...glad to hear it about Steve...kind of sad about Tommy...maybe you'll have an influence as time goes on.

martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2009, 02:15:51 PM »
My point is, I feel as a follower of Christ, I should be up front and out in the open, with no stone left unturned, about who I am.
No one should have to ask who is that guy? If I were to start a website filled with my teachings.
Transparency isn't always necessarily the best possible thing to have.  I've spent years and years and years being as transparent as I've known how to be.  All day yesterday, I was seriously reevaluating whether or not that's been the worst possible thing that I've been doing.  I don't know how to be anything else, other than transparent.  But I may have to learn how to be like many others who say a lot of things, but don't really say anything, in order to survive.  There comes a point in beating your head against the wall repeatedly :BangHead: where after a while, you're finally like "okay, I get it!  Wrong approach. I didn't die a hero, so I guess I'm living long enough to see myself become the villian." 

There's more than one topic that I've been banging around in my head about this, that if I'd been a little less upfront, might of gotten somewhere...especially by now, even if it could have only been right about now....  God Himself began things in thick darkness, from behind clouds, etc., before becoming the noon sun to us about everything.  Maybe there's no other way around it.  Maybe every prince has to be a frog first.  Maybe every diamond has to be a piece of coal first.  Maybe a parable is the only way you can start before you tell anyone plainly about your heavenly father.  Transparency is a very complicated subject. 

I evolved over 20 years into being too transparent in reaction to everything that I was seeing that was formless and void where darkness was the only thing on the face of the deep.  But when the earth was created, it went from thick darkness to a translucent condition on day two, and only to a transparent atmosphere on day four.  My one "yuk!" in the thoughts that I've been having is "but what's the alternative?  Being just as big of a _________ as everybody else??" 

Anyway, I'll probably be thinking a lot more along the same lines as my thoughts were yesterday, where this very thing is concerned.  Just be careful with throwing stones when you don't know someone else's life story, simply because you don't know their life story.  What they're doing or what they might wind up doing might make all of the sense in the world when all of the facts are on the table on judgment day.  All any of us can do is to always bare in mind that we will give an account on THAT Day.

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #14 on: March 31, 2009, 06:22:24 PM »
I think what concerns me is how many not so great teachers are out there. We all remember our friend Paul Cohen. Now if someone wants to be obscure, that's their right. But for me personally, if I can't establish who they are and what their statement of faith is, in a simple concise bio page, or if I have to ask around, I'm just going to have to move on. And in that process, maybe miss out on something. I love listening to my pastor's testimony. He ran from God for nine years after he received his initial calling. He was still a Las Vegas casino card dealer for many years after he finally answered the calling. It's not one of those overnight success stories. It's a wonderful testimony for someone like me, receiving a calling as I'm inching towards 50. I personally don't want a calling, but it seems to be there nonetheless. (I mainly don't want it because I'm lazy selfish). As far as Arnold Murray goes, I started watching his show 10 years ago, when I received my initial calling, so I have a personal understanding of who he is and what he teaches. However, the idea seems to be that you have to get to get to know him real well, before you have a clear idea of where he's coming from. So, maybe this is just a personal pet peeve of mine. But I truly like the fact that the two main instructors God lead me to, are both an open book. No guesswork involved. No trying to shade their past. I always laugh at what Tommy Bertoli said regarding anyone challenging his authority. "Who gave you authority to teach?" "God! God gave me the authority! I was minding my own business dealing cards!" And for me, it's like if God can do that with an average Joe card dealing stick ball player from Brooklyn, he can do it with me too, if that's His will. So, nothing against L. Ray or Arnold. I just hate playing guessing games, or have to rely on someone else's take on someone, instead of being able to just read it for myself up front, in their own words. If I were to start expounding  on my life story to the generalpublic, being a security guard at the moment, no one would give a rat's tail. If I were to become a public teacher, then I think it would matter.
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #15 on: March 31, 2009, 06:58:48 PM »
I hear you.  And I MAY BE WRONG ABOUT HOW RAY SEES SALVATION, but that's sort of how I picked up what he was saying...my perception/understanding.  Don't want to bear false witness against him...if anyone knows anything different about this, I'll gladly be corrected on it  :thumbsup:.

Brian...with the Chuck Smith, Steve Gregg etc. leadership/influence, what do you do with the UR beliefs?  And what are their reactions?  Thanks, James.

I've never listened to Chuck Smith.
Tommy is as I said, a brass tacks fundamentalist. But he's willing to give me latitude. He knows about my time here, and what's been discussed with Steve Gregg. He trusts my objectivity. As for Steve, He "puts on the Universalist hat" and defends UR, when he gets a caller discrediting it, if the caller doesn't know what he's talking about. The last time we all got together in Vegas, practically the whole 4 hours revolved around the subject of hell. Whish you could've been there, you would have really enjoyed it. He pretty much blasted ET to bits. Tommy doesn't like the idea of ET, but he feels the weight of Scripture teaches it. He does teach Eternal Security, which can be downloaded from his web site, http://www.messiahschristianfellowship.org/index_files/Page346.htm
Which will contain a lot of verses and concepts held by Universalists in my opinion.
Steve is at http://www.thenarrowpath.com/
I encourage everyone to give Steve a listen. All his radio shows are archived. All his many topical lectures are free. Select the February 18, 2009 show in the archive and hear him address Ghenna, and then the third caller is me! (The call screener thought I said my name was "Brad". And then me again, 02/26/09, (first caller) challenging the Rich Man and Lazarus popular interpretation.

Very good Brad  :happygrin: , thanks...glad to hear it about Steve...kind of sad about Tommy...maybe you'll have an influence as time goes on.

Tommy is a far cry from being a fire and brimstone preacher. His main focus is the richness of our lives in Jesus Christ. In my opinion a person can be a very, very good teacher and still hold to ET. Whereas there are not so good teachers who hold to UR, like Paul Cohen. To me, something like UR takes a back seat, compared to having complete and total faith in God's sovereignty to do what's right, perfect and just. I don't know for sure if Tommy Bertoli is wrong about his interpretation of scripture regarding hell, and if Gary Amirault is right. And it doesn't matter. Because I follow neither Paul or Apollos (1 Corinthians 1:12-13). I follow Jesus Christ. Him and Him alone. And I trust Him implicitly. :HeartThrob: :cloud9:

« Last Edit: March 31, 2009, 07:04:46 PM by Brian »
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Offline legoman

  • 500
  • *
  • Posts: 907
  • Gender: Male
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2009, 08:37:02 PM »
I think what concerns me is how many not so great teachers are out there. We all remember our friend Paul Cohen. Now if someone wants to be obscure, that's their right. But for me personally, if I can't establish who they are and what their statement of faith is, in a simple concise bio page, or if I have to ask around, I'm just going to have to move on. And in that process, maybe miss out on something. I love listening to my pastor's testimony. He ran from God for nine years after he received his initial calling. He was still a Las Vegas casino card dealer for many years after he finally answered the calling. It's not one of those overnight success stories. It's a wonderful testimony for someone like me, receiving a calling as I'm inching towards 50. I personally don't want a calling, but it seems to be there nonetheless. (I mainly don't want it because I'm lazy selfish). As far as Arnold Murray goes, I started watching his show 10 years ago, when I received my initial calling, so I have a personal understanding of who he is and what he teaches. However, the idea seems to be that you have to get to get to know him real well, before you have a clear idea of where he's coming from. So, maybe this is just a personal pet peeve of mine. But I truly like the fact that the two main instructors God lead me to, are both an open book. No guesswork involved. No trying to shade their past. I always laugh at what Tommy Bertoli said regarding anyone challenging his authority. "Who gave you authority to teach?" "God! God gave me the authority! I was minding my own business dealing cards!" And for me, it's like if God can do that with an average Joe card dealing stick ball player from Brooklyn, he can do it with me too, if that's His will. So, nothing against L. Ray or Arnold. I just hate playing guessing games, or have to rely on someone else's take on someone, instead of being able to just read it for myself up front, in their own words. If I were to start expounding  on my life story to the generalpublic, being a security guard at the moment, no one would give a rat's tail. If I were to become a public teacher, then I think it would matter.

Hi Brian,

I think when one first comes across a new teacher, you have to read everything with a grain of salt.  At least thats how it was for me.  Much of the time you will see that what you are reading is from a crackpot - but once in a while you find will find a great treasure.

I've read most of the articles on Ray Smith's site.  I didn't know anything about him when I first started reading it, in fact I didn't even know anything about UR - I was exploring.  The thing about his articles is that he backs everything up with scripture.  Initially I thought I would read his articles and be able to debunk them myself (back when I believed in eternal torment) - but I couldn't.  So to me it didn't matter WHO he was at all - the key thing was he was explaining the scriptures, and he backed up everything so clearly I couldn't deny it.  He would take scriptures I had never read or understood and put them together with other spiritual matches and explained it all in a way that I could understand.

Of course I had a lot of time (months) to study his material, compare it with other sites, compare it with the bible, and form my own conclusions.  Personally I think he is spot on most of the time.

However his presentation is a bit harsh sometimes - personally I don't have much of a problem with it - its more like a slap-to-the-face/snap-out-of-it kind of wakeup call.

Its interesting - I get the feeling that here at tentmaker a lot of people left bibletruths for various reasons.   I'm not sure exactly why as I believe he is teaching the truth.  I don't know the whole history - I do think perhaps their forum is a bit difficult to discuss things in - basically no discussion outside of what Ray believes.  Perhaps it is too "ray"-centric instead of "bible-centric" - is that the general consensus here?  I can see that Ray may be a bit too harsh or prideful as well sometimes - but who I am to judge.

Anyway I would 100% recommend his Lake of Fire series.  The "Free will myth" section is particularly illuminating, but I think it is probably tough for some people to swallow, and perhaps could lead to some strife (that topic always seems to do that).  Prepare to spend several months going through it.

Legoman

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #17 on: April 01, 2009, 12:15:33 AM »

Hi Brian,

I think when one first comes across a new teacher, you have to read everything with a grain of salt.  At least that's how it was for me.  Much of the time you will see that what you are reading is from a crackpot - but once in a while you find will find a great treasure.

I hear you. But I'd rather that they just provide a statement of faith/belief and some background info, rather than sift through lots of material to make a judgment call. My feeling is that if it were that easy to spot a crackpot, there wouldn't be so many crackpots in business. Or, let me put it this way, I've never known of a non-crackpot to not give a full declaration of who they are and exactly what they believe/teach right off the bat.
Now I'm not launching an attack against L. Ray Smith. But after I thought it over, it occurred to me I shouldn't have to perform an "investigation" like this on him (or anyone else legit) or read through reams of material to establish who he is.
I didn't for example have to spend countless hours wading through his material to find out what I needed to know about Gary Amirault right off the bat: http://www.tentmaker.org/testimonials/GaryAmirault.html
See what I mean?

Quote
I've read most of the articles on Ray Smith's site.  I didn't know anything about him when I first started reading it, in fact I didn't even know anything about UR - I was exploring.  The thing about his articles is that he backs everything up with scripture.  Initially I thought I would read his articles and be able to debunk them myself (back when I believed in eternal torment) - but I couldn't.  So to me it didn't matter WHO he was at all - the key thing was he was explaining the scriptures, and he backed up everything so clearly I couldn't deny it.  He would take scriptures I had never read or understood and put them together with other spiritual matches and explained it all in a way that I could understand.

Not meaning to be argumentative, but the problem I have with that is a lot of bad teachers back everything up with scripture. But unless someone has learned or been trained on how to properly interpret and rightly divide scripture, they can't count on themselves to do so correctly. If whoever knows his way around the Bible ten times better than I do, then he's going to be able to subtly manipulate it any way he wants, without me being any the wiser, even though I think I have a handle on it. I recently challenged a radio host going on about all kinds of kooky sounding stuff about his special God revelation given forgotten Hebrew moon calendar etc. I started out by giving him a brief background on who I was and what I know about scripture and what I know about Old Testament law and history. He more or less replied that I wasn't the kind of person he was trying to reach i.e. I was too Biblically literate.

Quote
Of course I had a lot of time (months) to study his material, compare it with other sites, compare it with the bible, and form my own conclusions.  Personally I think he is spot on most of the time.

However his presentation is a bit harsh sometimes - personally I don't have much of a problem with it - its more like a slap-to-the-face/snap-out-of-it kind of wakeup call.

Its interesting - I get the feeling that here at tentmaker a lot of people left bibletruths for various reasons.   I'm not sure exactly why as I believe he is teaching the truth.  I don't know the whole history - I do think perhaps their forum is a bit difficult to discuss things in - basically no discussion outside of what Ray believes.  Perhaps it is too "ray"-centric instead of "bible-centric" - is that the general consensus here?  I can see that Ray may be a bit too harsh or prideful as well sometimes - but who I am to judge.

Anyway I would 100% recommend his Lake of Fire series.  The "Free will myth" section is particularly illuminating, but I think it is probably tough for some people to swallow, and perhaps could lead to some strife (that topic always seems to do that).  Prepare to spend several months going through it.

Legoman


Well if enough people I know here recommend him, then that's good enough for me. I just whish I could have gotten it from Smith himself in an article on his website titled something like "Who Is L. Ray Smith?" One of his fans should at least write a Wiki article about him. I did find out pretty quick on his website that he has stage 4 prostate cancer, and therefore is in need of prayer.

« Last Edit: April 01, 2009, 12:22:52 AM by Brian »
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Offline legoman

  • 500
  • *
  • Posts: 907
  • Gender: Male
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #18 on: April 01, 2009, 06:13:02 AM »
Well if he had a blurb saying "I used to be a roofer, but now I study the bible all day..." would that have really made a difference in your decision to read his material?

I believe he does say that somewhere, and he also says he is a member of the church of the body of Christ (or something like that).

For me these are both sufficiently vague that they wouldn't necessarily draw me in to read his material.  But after reading the first couple pages of one of his articles, I was intrigued enough to continue on, and eventually read through it all.  If your looking for a place to start - probably start with the Hagee letter.

It helped that what he said made sense instantly - no double talk/double think required - it was refreshing. 

Mind you I know what you mean about credentials - for the first several months I spent a lot of time trying to figure out who he was as well.  There are a few web sites out there that slam him.  Eventually I stumbled on to that he was just a retired roofer - but I believe he was also involved in the WW church of God.  I don't know the history too much.

Of course I like information overload, examining everything from both sides so I can understand it.  Even if I didn't believe UR I probably would have read his material so I could try to debunk it (which is what I tried to do initially - and failed! :laughing7:)

Right now I am reading through a number of Calvinist tracts - Pink's sovereignty of god, John Edwards stuff, etc.  Mainly so I know what I am up against in understanding.  Nothing strengthens your belief more than understanding the opposing arguments and understanding why their belief is false and why yours is true.  If you can't do that, then you need to do more studying.

Good luck in your studies...

Offline jabcat

  • Admin
  • *
  • Posts: 9107
  • SINNER SAVED BY GRACE
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #19 on: April 01, 2009, 07:41:50 AM »
I do understand wanting to know some basic things about a person, I'm the same way...sort'a who are you and where are you from?  But here's another view from the outfield...i have lost very much respect for "credentials" over the past bit...there are so many "credentialed" pastors, priests, rabbis that have so many spiritual areas that apparently have not been revealed to them, I'm at the point of looking more for an individual's understanding of scripture and the workings of God, than their titles.  Remember John The Baptist...basically, Jesus said what did you expect to see...some fine looking fella?  Quite the opposite  :Sparkletooth: 

There are many titled "experts" that I have a very hard time even listening to any more.  Shoot, who trusts most of what the seminaries are teaching?  They're the ones perpetuating hell and many other of the orthodox Dark Ages beliefs   that God is leading many away from  :mshock:.  The Hagee letter, "The Seven Wonders of Hell" is excellent  :thumbsup:.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2009, 07:43:49 AM by jabcat »

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #20 on: April 01, 2009, 07:49:37 AM »
Well if he had a blurb saying "I used to be a roofer, but now I study the bible all day..." would that have really made a difference in your decision to read his material?

I would consider what he did for a living, unless he was a pastor teacher etc., to be immaterial. Like I said, my chosen pastor/teacher was a Vegas poker dealer for many years. One of our deacons is still a bartender. Jesus was a woodworker. What of it?

Quote
I believe he does say that somewhere, and he also says he is a member of the church of the body of Christ (or something like that).

For me these are both sufficiently vague that they wouldn't necessarily draw me in to read his material.  But after reading the first couple pages of one of his articles, I was intrigued enough to continue on, and eventually read through it all.  If your looking for a place to start - probably start with the Hagee letter.

It helped that what he said made sense instantly - no double talk/double think required - it was refreshing. 

Mind you I know what you mean about credentials - for the first several months I spent a lot of time trying to figure out who he was as well.  There are a few web sites out there that slam him.  Eventually I stumbled on to that he was just a retired roofer - but I believe he was also involved in the WW church of God.  I don't know the history too much.

Of course I like information overload, examining everything from both sides so I can understand it.  Even if I didn't believe UR I probably would have read his material so I could try to debunk it (which is what I tried to do initially - and failed! :laughing7:)

Right now I am reading through a number of Calvinist tracts - Pink's sovereignty of god, John Edwards stuff, etc.  Mainly so I know what I am up against in understanding.  Nothing strengthens your belief more than understanding the opposing arguments and understanding why their belief is false and why yours is true.  If you can't do that, then you need to do more studying.


I agree with you totally on exploring all avenues, once you've established a firm foundation in Jesus Christ and Scripture.

Quote
Good luck in your studies...

Thanks. I'm a good learner, but a lousy student, if you know what I mean. I've never done well with curriculum. But I'm seeing this thing through. One class at a time. Just wrapping up the historical books. Then the book of Acts is next. I don't know where this all leading. But I do know within a year or two, I'll know my way around the Bible a whole lot better than I do now. And then, I'll start tackling all the various doctrines. In the meantime and forever more, all I need to know is, Jesus Christ. Him and Him alone.
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Offline WhiteWings

  • Gold
  • *
  • Posts: 13126
  • Gender: Male
  • Yahshua heals
    • My sites
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #21 on: April 01, 2009, 08:02:46 AM »
Well if he had a blurb saying "I used to be a roofer, but now I study the bible all day..." would that have really made a difference in your decision to read his material?

He wrote that quite often in his e-mail section.
ETs quite often ask "Who are you to discredit <insert famous name>. What is your (theological) education."
Sometime people thank him for his teachings and say how smart he must be to figure it all out.
Then his answer is that he was a roofer and started talking about it with his colleague/friend. IIRC his friend helps Ray with all kinda BT stuff now.

If he answers the ET I'm a roofer then the problem for the ET is solved. Ray says weird things because he has low education (just like that's always a marker for intelligence). If he would have 10 PhDs then well he's misguided.
As written above He backs up everything with verses. And not just listing 5 verses and that's it. He really uses the verses.
Is he speaking the truth? To know that you have to start investigating his answers/verses. Many don't want to do so. They just read the Bible without really reading it. For the meaning of the story they turn to a teacher. A teacher that never would have passed his exams if he wouldn't have answered many times hell=fire=eternal. At least that's my thought.
(I would like Martin to start a little thread on that education/indoctrination)

I would say just spend an hour in his e-mail section. Even if you don't like his teachings you have a good time reading.
Scholats usually start with something like "Dear collegue I have to disagree". Ray just spits in your face as an introduction and then starts kicking :winkgrin:
A thing scholars both ET and UR have to take in mind not all of theur audience has studied theology. Or has a degree of any sort. They often tend to talk over peoples head. Ray tells equally truthful things with laymans words. I think he certainly reaches a group of people the scholar fails to reach. Note that with reaching I mean make people understand instead of listening without really understanding the conclusion or how that conclusion was reached.
1 Timothy 2:3-4  ...God our Savior;  Who will have all men to be saved...
John 12:47  And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.
Romans 4:5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in the one who declares the ungodly righteous ...

Offline Brian

  • 300
  • *
  • Posts: 395
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #22 on: April 01, 2009, 08:14:12 AM »
I do understand wanting to know some basic things about a person, I'm the same way...sort'a who are you and where are you from?  But here's another view from the outfield...i have lost very much respect for "credentials" over the past bit...there are so many "credentialed" pastors, priests, rabbis that have so many spiritual areas that apparently have not been revealed to them, I'm at the point of looking more for an individual's understanding of scripture and the workings of God, than their titles.  Remember John The Baptist...basically, Jesus said what did you expect to see...some fine looking fella?  Quite the opposite  :Sparkletooth:  

There are many titled "experts" that I have a very hard time even listening to any more.  Shoot, who trusts most of what the seminaries are teaching?  They're the ones perpetuating hell and many other of the orthodox Dark Ages beliefs   that God is leading many away from  :mshock:.  The Hagee letter, "The Seven Wonders of Hell" is excellent  :thumbsup:.

I agree completely. It's not a matter of credentials to me. I may never have any credentials. My pastor is a former Calvary Chapel Bible college director, an he is giving "credits" for those who want them in our little school gathering. But, if I ever teach, which will probably be textually, like Smith. And I'll want people to who I am and what I teach and why I teach it. I want to be a real person with a face and a background. That way people will know me, know who I am before they get started. Now in a discussion group like this, it's not necessary to have everyone's background. But at the same time, it makes a difference. While I was wandering, I became attached to a Las Vegas discussion group, Well, a lot of the participants all get together in Vegas once a year. They're no longer just words on a screen, they're living breathing people. Makes a big difference, at least to me. Even before I met Steve Gregg in person, I felt like I already knew him because of his extensive bio, including photos. It wasn't like meeting or seeing him for the first time. Oh, here's a You Tube clip of me hanging out with the "sinners" in Sin City. In the group I go by the name nickname of "Ace" (even though I don't play poker. I asked my pastor to teach me, but it hasn't happened so far. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpvP5zxiTEE
For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10

Paul Hazelwood

  • Guest
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #23 on: April 01, 2009, 08:16:19 AM »
I don't agree with everything L Ray Smith writes.   His standing challenge to prove him wrong with 2 scriptures is not necessarily a factual way to prove anyone wrong, but he is not that receptive when you actually send him 2 scriptures.   ;)    He has his articles well thought out, some of his points when talking text comparisons are indeed difficult to find 2 scriptures to send.  However, sending him 2 scriptures and some commentary doesn't really count with him, lol.  

Not everything his views stand on is entirely scripture.  He is even less receptive to challenging his non scriptural resources.  Not saying he is "unscriptural", only that his grammar rule he uses for aionios does not exist.  Superior is greater than Super.

The problem we ALL have to deal with is that no man has all truth even if someones point seems iron clad.  That is why each of us individually are the ones that God works on.



martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: L. Ray Smith?
« Reply #24 on: April 01, 2009, 08:22:58 AM »
Unfortunately, people are shallow enough to where if they're under impressed by the background, it won't matter how revelatory that you are in what the Holy Spirit is delivering through you.  There's no right or wrong on this.  Got to thinking about an earlier post that I'd made that itself had come out of weeks of private whining.  The most transparent are going to attract an audience that the mysterious Phantoms of the Opera could never reach, and there are others that the Phantom of the Opera is the only one that's going to get through to them 'cause they're like a little baby in awe with their mouths dropped open and the good ol' Phantom can sneak in there with the spoon full of Spiritual Gerber.  Peter we understand to be the business man from Galilee whose boat that Jesus would fill.  St. Paul is debated to this day as to who he was, why he was, whether his call was genuine or if he was Roman infiltration, etc.  Yet, St. Paul's writings do things for some people that nearly the same thing being said by St. Peter with a little different phraseology will seldom do as much for, and vice versa.