Institute in Basic Life Principles

Status
Not open for further replies.

JM

Puritan Board Doctor
My wife and I are reading "20 and Counting" by the Duggars. In the back of the book they have a resource section with a list of books found on the IBLP website, I honestly do not know much about this site/group, can anyone fill me in on what they teach?

Thanks.

j
 

Leslie

Puritan Board Junior
Concerning the IBLP: Gothardism, Making doctrine out of the commandments of men, etc.
Can you explain more specifically what is wrong with this? I had some superficial acquaintance with it years ago and thought it was good but don't have much memory of it.
 

jaybird0827

PuritanBoard Honor Roll
I remember being taught to follow "scripture formulas" to make things happen.

For example, praying the "hedge of thorns" on a son or daughter that has gone wayward and to find the prayer answered in that they end up coming home because no one wants anything to do with them anymore.

in my opinion it subtly makes God's actions dependent on what we do.
 

toddpedlar

Iron Dramatist
I remember being taught to follow "scripture formulas" to make things happen.

For example, praying the "hedge of thorns" on a son or daughter that has gone wayward and to find the prayer answered in that they end up coming home because no one wants anything to do with them anymore.

in my opinion it subtly makes God's actions dependent on what we do.
Gothard's "life doctrines" are like the Ezzo's parenting philosophy... BAD NEWS legalism. I wouldn't touch any of either of those things with a ten light-year pole.
 

tcalbrecht

Puritan Board Junior
Concerning the IBLP: Gothardism, Making doctrine out of the commandments of men, etc.
Can you explain more specifically what is wrong with this? I had some superficial acquaintance with it years ago and thought it was good but don't have much memory of it.
Legalism 101. I recall Gothard didn't like men with beards. In his mind it indicated a lack of humility. Not sure what he thought about women with beards.
 

JM

Puritan Board Doctor
Concerning the IBLP: Gothardism, Making doctrine out of the commandments of men, etc.
Can you explain more specifically what is wrong with this? I had some superficial acquaintance with it years ago and thought it was good but don't have much memory of it.
Legalism 101. I recall Gothard didn't like men with beards. In his mind it indicated a lack of humility. Not sure what he thought about women with beards.
I guess I'm out.
 

Kevin

Puritan Board Doctor
Flee far from it!

As mentioned above Gothard teaches a strrange sort of legalism. On of his most dangerous doctrines is that girls are always under the authority of some man. Father, future husband, if no husband back to dear ol dad. In this position the woman has no moral culpability for her actions. In other words, she must do as told even to the point of sinning!!!!

this is contrary to the reformed doctrine of the individual priesthood of all believers, including women!

Very dangerous.
 

Augusta

Puritan Board Doctor
*Looks around for Lady Flynt* She will have a few choice words about this. I remember going to his seminar and the HUGE notebook. :rolleyes: Ditto to the negative comments. Even the stuff that is common sense, in his book if you don't do it you are not Christian. Very legalistic.
 

Grafted In

Puritan Board Freshman
My father-in-law uses Gothard's Character Sketches with his children (my wife was raised on this stuff).

It seems the material employs a reductionistic view of the word of God, distilling all of special revelation into "basic life principles" that can be lived. It is a radically moralistic approach to the Scriptures.

Rather than viewing the Scriptures in the redemptive historical sense of making Christ known, it emphasizes that what people really need is twenty verses on why drinking is bad.

:2cents:
 

Spinningplates2

Puritan Board Freshman
Bill Gothard was real big here in the Chicago area in the late seventies and early eighties. I went to a number of them even though the Church I was attending was Reformed. I remember one major section being about accpting ten things that God has control over, such as; when you were born, how smart you would be, what your race would be and if you would be rich, poor, ugly or handsome. We would laugh that Bill was more Calvinistic then he knew.

We quit going when we found out that he taught that if your stock piled food or bought extra insurance then you were not trusting God. I never even thought about taking my own children though.
 

JBaldwin

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
Ditto to all that has been said. I was an employee of Gothard's in the early 1980s and knew Gothard and his family and relatives personally. As has been said, what he teaches is an odd brand of legalism. Gothard has never married, but gives out all kinds of advice on how to raise familes. Gothard lives in his own little world. When I knew him, he would take the first 40 days of each year and go off and fast, pray and study for his seminars and books.

Gothard is fond of taking stories out of the scriptures and making life principles of them. I remember particularly one talk he had in our daily staff devotional time about Gideon and his fleece. He believed in putting out fleeces to find God's will.

When I resigned from my position on staff to go to a 2-year Bible Institute (I was 23 at the time), he tracked down my father who was living in Florida at the time and just days out of open heart surgery (still in the hospital) to tell him that I was out God's will, because I went to a Bible Institute without my father's consent. My father nearly had a second heart attack and wouldn't speak to me for quite some time, because he thought I had given Gothard his phone number at the hosptial. I had done no such thing.

My advice is to stay away from anything that has to do with Bill Gothard. It will lead you into bondage.
 

Stephen L Smith

Moderator
Staff member
Ditto to all that has been said. I was an employee of Gothard's in the early 1980s and knew Gothard and his family and relatives personally.
It is interesting to read of someone who has personally known Gothard.

I read some of his materials when i was young and searching and been in churches where there was poor pastoral care. I thought he had the answers to life and this principles would make strong, godly and caring families - something I was searching for. It took me a long time to find cracks in the system, then start a blessed journey to Reformed Theology.
 

LadyFlynt

Puritan Board Doctor
My wife and I are reading "20 and Counting" by the Duggars. In the back of the book they have a resource section with a list of books found on the IBLP website, I honestly do not know much about this site/group, can anyone fill me in on what they teach?

Thanks.

j
Run far, Run fast, don't look back or you'll turn into a pillar of legalistic, fundamentalist salt.

-----Added 5/6/2009 at 12:03:01 EST-----

*Looks around for Lady Flynt* She will have a few choice words about this. I remember going to his seminar and the HUGE notebook. :rolleyes: Ditto to the negative comments. Even the stuff that is common sense, in his book if you don't do it you are not Christian. Very legalistic.
Thankfully someone posted a link, because I'm just too tired to go into a spew right now and really am trying (with success) to stay away from spewing topics :lol:
 

moselle

Puritan Board Freshman
I was brought to the basic seminar as a youth - I remember missing a friend's birthday party (hosted by James Gallaway!) by being guilted out of not missing one of the sessions. Later, my parent's required dh to attend before he could marry me. Mostly what I remember is that he believed true, Godly music sounded basically like Mozart. Maybe you could throw in Handel and early Beethoven.

My parents tried for a while to use the Character Sketches in family devotions, but I think we got tired of the shallow lessons and started acting like badgers during the story and arguing about the use of the terms goose/geese and moose/meese.

Also, because of the Advanced Seminar, several of my relatives will no longer eat cheeseburgers (dairy + meat). :lol: Oh, the tangled web...
 

twogunfighter

Puritan Board Freshman
Having attended 3-4 Basic and two advanced seminars, I would say that there is much scripture that is taught. However, as others have noted the interpretation of it is extremely poor. After I was done, I seriously flirted with Arminianism. I would say that it wasn't until I began going to a PCA church that I was able to really begin to understand where my thinking had been wrong. It took three years of PCA to get "Gothardism" out of my system.
 

Knoxienne

Puritan Board Graduate
I attended one of Bill Gothard's seminars when I was a kid and we were attending an Assembly of God church for a time. I kept the big red and black book for awhile, but it started crowding out too much of the good stuff so I tossed it, sent it to goodwill, etc. I wish I'd kept it. I like Lady Flynt's idea of a heresy shelf! :)

One of the things that I don't like about Bill Gothard is his doctrine that children are still under the authority of their parents, even when they're married. :eek: That contradicts scripture, big time.

We have some close friends who have his materials in their library. It would be interesting to look at them again, laugh at some of the stuff and look at the stuff that could be useful, if anything. It's been a long time since I've seen his stuff. I'm sure there are some practical things that I'd find useful about his stuff now. When I attended the seminar I was a rebellious child and probably a lot of the reasons I didn't like him were related to my own rebellion and not because the teaching was legalistic. Back then I didn't know anything about reformed theology either, so I couldn't really replace his teachings with anything else.

I liken him to Michael and Debi Perl - keep the stuff that's biblical and chuck the stuff that isn't. Test everything. Test, test, test.

I find it's really no different than listening to Great Courses Teaching Tapes. Most of those professors are anti-christs, but there are still good things to be gleaned from the lectures. Machiavelli's (?) - a keep your friends close and your enemies closer sort of thing! :smug:

The biggest struggle of my sanctification is being willing to be patient through the chaff to find some pearls of biblical wisdom that I can apply to my life as a Christian woman and to not let the errors drag me down. At the same time when someone does say something that's true or good to rejoice.

I think as Christians we also need to be able to recognize true legalism from a counterfeit legalism. Sometimes in the past, I've called a specific practice or belief legalistic as a mask for my own rebellion. There's a difference between a person believing that he has to do or not do something in order to be saved (justified) and that person studying the scriptures and coming to a point in his sanctification where he believes that doing or not doing something is helpful or important to his Christian witness and his sanctification. Legalism teaches justification by works. Legalism teaches that the law (God's or man's) saves. Fundamentalism in sei does teach legalism, but then again, so does anything that isn't Biblical. Humanism is very legalistic.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top