I have a confession to make. I’m a trekkie. I got hooked watching the re-runs with my father in the early 70’s and was absolutely riveted to ST TNG during the late 80’s with Jean-Luc and the crew.

The trekkies among us (and you know you’re out there) will recall various episodes that featured a fairly frightening theme. The gist of the plot was that some alien entity somehow infected, took control of and then began to systematically re-program the Enterprise’s main computer. It began with small glitches (for example Jean-Luc would order his customary ‘tea, Earl Grey, hot!’ but the replicator would produce a vase of flowers). For the non-trekkies among us (how anyone could actually be a non-trekkie is beyond me, but I digress) hang with me, there really is a point to all this. Soon after the ship was in chaos, the crew in a panic (except for Jean-Luc and Data of course) and right on cue a Romulan War Bird would de-cloak off the starboard bow. Our heroes found themselves somewhere in deep space, grappling with a schizophrenic ship and menacing enemy. However, in short order they would once again extricate themselves out of this latest delicate dilemma. Jean-Luc would convince the Romulan commander that he really had better things to do than to blast the Enterprise to smithereens. Data and Geordi would finally fix the computer and Riker and Worf would well… stand around and look mean.

The plot centered on a society’s reliance on technology. It’s a theme picked up by sci-fi movies like The Terminator and The Matrix (refried, retried and retired). In short, humanity could face catastrophic consequences should our technology ever gain sentience, decide we’re the enemy and then proceed to blast us to kingdom come. In the world of sci-fi technology is life. If it’s working properly everybody’s happy. If it goes loopy, watch out!

Dear ones we have a similar and potentially catastrophic situation within the Black community. The problem isn’t with our technology (your tivo is fine), but our theology. Over the last several years the unofficial, but recognized leaders of the Black church have been in the process of redefining all of the classic themes of biblical theology. Like the alien entities that hijacked the Enterprise’s computer, they have hijacked Christian theology and poured new, deviant and eventually destructive meanings into the historic Biblical doctrines of the Scriptures, the nature of God, mankind, sin, salvation, the church and Jesus Christ. Those who’ve introduced and now promote these cunning perversions are dangerous on many levels two of which I’ll mention now. Firstly, like other cults such as Mormons and JW’s they employ Scriptural language and terms but redefine those terms to suit their own means. Secondly, and more insidious is that these men and women are already accepted as orthodox evangelicals. Though we're aware of the threat, I don't know if we understand how grave it is. In the second part of this article I'll spell out the threat and will chime in from time to time with steps we can take to engage it and by the grace and power of God right our people's theological ship.

To be continued...

Lance Lewis