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Jesus Revolution

Jon Harris: Chuck Smith Defeated The Jesus Revolution

Jon Harris, the host of Conversations That Matter, just released his review of the Jesus Revolution movie. It was quite similar to my own review, but he had a take that was hotter than mine, so I wanted to give it more exploration.

Jon Harris, in his thorough review of the lesson we should take away from the movie, pointed out that Chuck Smith was the best of the Jesus Movement. He talked about how Chuck Smith preached the gospel to hippies who were against institutional religion and they grew up and became members of an organized church.

Whereas the movie shows us the beginnings of the Jesus Movement and how Chuck Smith and Lonnie Frisbee fracture over Frisbee going Benny Hinn, Jon Harris looks back on the Jesus Movement as mostly a bad thing, that Chuck Smith wrestled with and ultimately won. This is not to say that everything he did was good, like getting rid of hymns. But he navigated the situation better than his contemporaries.

I thought Jon Harris’s analysis was quite unique. He further goes on to say that a true Jesus Revolution today would be one that targets trads as opposed to queers.

It was a really good episode of his podcast that analyzed the movie from his historian’s perspective.

Bonus: watch or listen to our interview with Jon Harris on American history.

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7 Responses

  1. The use of the word “queers” is unfortunate in a Christian publication. Having been a trained chaplain-counselor on sexual addictions/AIDS, the word is careless to many.
    It is so glorious to witness a hardened homosexual deeply repenting and asking Jesus to sincerely save them.
    Even today, far too many pastors don’t understand the gay lifestyle. Ergo, they can harshly judge, without God’s love, the sufferers that may be seeking to find Jesus. How deeply humbling it is to see so many homosexuals denouncing their sins and asking my wife and me to pray for, counsel, and pastor them. They became our brothers & sisters in Christ, faithfully attending our church services and testifying to God’s deliverance.
    Yes, I knew Lonnie Frisbee from the Jesus Revolution. His falling away was heartbreaking and his ultimate repentance glorious, he even wrote a small book in the end asking for forgiveness, denouncing his gay lifestyle, deeply encouraging gays to come to repentance, and turn to Jesus for forgiveness and eternal life.
    One could sense Lonnie’s agony with each written word. His life was truly his flesh fighting the Spirit of God; the Lord ultimately winning the battle. Yes, Lonnie got lost and painfully wandered from the truth of God but, the Lord eventually found him
    None of us should cast the first stone unless we are perfect, having never sinned. From one degree to another, we have, and still do, sin. While we can become faithless, God remains faithful.

      1. Ray, you know how that goes, they use certain words and it’s okay. If we use them, the liberal media will attack us like annoying flies.
        Still, I would prefer to erase such verbiage so as to not tarnish the light of Jesus Christ. If my wife and I said “fags” or “queers”, our ministries to those locked in said sins would be moot.
        One cannot be insulted into hearing about Christ. We gave them the love and care of Jesus Christ and they came to us and our churches. At one point, we had more former gay friends than straight ones. They all struggled at first and some fell away but the lasting fruit was refreshing. But yes, the phone rang off the wall with some fighting their temptations and needing prayerful support.
        Ray, you have a good ministry but in your honest disgust for what is killing the churches, I feel you, at times, cross the line a bit.
        I have emailed 2 Baptist missionary friends serving in Ukraine about reported crimes against Ukrainian churches. I hope to hear from them soon but for safety, their ministries are much underground to escape rockets, mortars, and automatic gun fire. They are fluent in Russian so I know they can read papers and listen to Ukrainians. I’ll let you know what I find.

        1. Well said Stan. I believe a lot of discernment ministries are overly discerning to the point of becoming condemnation ministries.
          Your reference to casting the first stone is appropriate. I sometimes feel like some discernment ministries won’t be happy until there’s nobody left claiming the name of Christ that doesn’t believe exactly as they believe in all areas of doctrine, theology, eschatology.
          I for one have seen much more blessing for the true Kingdom of Christ come out of the Calvary chapel movement then I have cursings.

          I’m not saying there’s not a Time to die on a hill and we should always stand up for God’s truth but I think a lot of the current YouTube and media driven discerners are just flat out mean-spirited towards anyone who slightly disagrees or has a different position than them.

          Especially on Calvinism, Armenianism debates.

          Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value and only ruins those who listen” (2 Tim. 2:14).

          “Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly. Their teaching will spread like gangrene.” (2 Tim. 2:16-17)

          “Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And 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 grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth…”

          1. I’m sure I will be impugned for this but it is hard to imagine Jesus Christ using derogatory language towards sinners. Pharisees possibly?
            I feel the frustration with all the godless things being crammed down our throats as normal but we have to truly ask ourselves how would Jesus respond.

          2. Joe, I agree with what you say here. When I set out to do this, I wanted to avoid these pitfalls, and have made it clear that these secondary issues are not dividing lines on faith, and even association doesn’t make a false teacher.

            Having gone from Aminian to Calvinist in the last ten years and studying eschatology and changing positions there. I actually hold Calvary Chapel in high regard because despite the fact that their theology is different they haven’t compromised on major issues. They are probably the best charismatic denominations, in my opinion. I think transparent metrics and defined terms of primary, secondary, and tertiary issues is key to avoiding these pitfalls.

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