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Ecumenical Jihad by Peter Kreeft: A Book Review by Dr. Robert A. Morey

I am not an emotional person by nature and tend to take things in stride. Thus I rarely read a book that frightens or alarms me. But Peter Kreeft has managed to stir me from my dogmatic slumbers more than any other writer in the last five years. 

The back of the book has endorsements by Chuck Colson and J. I. Packer. I reproduce their endorsements below so that you can make up your own mind what they said about Kreeft's book.

"Peter Kreeft is one of the premier apologists in America today, witty, incisive and powerful. On the front lines in today's culture war, Kreeft is one of our most valiant intellectual warriors."

Chuck Colson
"This racy little book opens up a far-reaching theme. With entertaining insight Kreeft looks into the attitudes, alliances, and strategies that today's state of affairs requires of believers. Catholics, Protestants, and Orthodox alike need to ponder Peter Kreeft's vision of things-- preferably, in discussion together. What if he is right?"

J. I. Packer
The first question that comes to mind is "Who is Peter Kreeft?"

Academically, he is a professor of philosophy at Boston College, a Roman Catholic Jesuit institution. His discussion of pagan religions reveals that he is well-versed in philosophy and comparative religion. 

Personally, he is a dedicated Roman Catholic whose manifest agenda is to destroy Protestantism and to exalt the Pope and his church as the one true Church. This agenda runs throughout all his articles, books and lectures as well as in this book. 
Psychologically, the reason why he is such a zealous Protestant-basher is that he was raised as a Protestant and attended Calvin College before converting to popery. Just as many ex-Catholics have an axe to grind against Rome, Kreeft has an axe to grind against Geneva. 

For example, While Kreeft tells us that such pagans such as Confucius, Buddha, Muhammad, etc. are now in heaven, he nowhere tells us that Luther or any of the other Reformers made it. On page 80, he plainly states that Luther was a "heretic.” It would not surprise me to find that he believes that Luther, Calvin, et al. are in hell.

Spiritually, Kreeft is an apostate who has turned away from the Gospel of free grace and now preaches a works-based salvation (Gal. 1:8-10). As a modern Judaizer, he is a “false brother” according to the Apostle Paul. 

Given the above facts, it is truly amazing that Kreeft speaks at Evangelical colleges and universities and is touted as a "Christian" apologist. His books are even used as textbooks in some Evangelical institutions and various campus ministries. 

Intervarsity Press, at one time an Evangelical publisher, has printed several of his books. In the book, Handbook of Christian Apologetics, (IVP, 1994), Kreeft and co-author Tacelli, (also a Jesuit), argue that it is not necessary to believe in or even hear of Jesus Christ to go to heaven. Pagans like gay Socrates make it to heaven without "repentance toward God and faith in Jesus Christ" (pgs. 323-335). 

It is sad to remember that at one time IVP put out books giving the Biblical Gospel to lost students such as Roman Catholics. But, since IVP now prints books that deny eternal conscious punishment in hell, justify abortion, reduce God to a pagan finite deity, and call for a "new" attitude toward sodomy, that it would now publish an apostate Protestant turned papist, seems par for the course. Let us pray that the leaders of IVP become Christians.

Now, who in their right mind would invite a Romanist zealot who preaches a different gospel with another way of salvation to lecture Evangelical students? What professor would recommend books written by Kreeft to his students? Only a "wolf in sheep's clothing" or someone who is incredibly ignorant and naive. 

The questions above cannot be avoided. The following propositions emphasize the radical nature of these questions. 

Proposition #1 At the Reformation, the Council of Trent made it clear that the Protestant Gospel of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone was NOT the gospel of Rome. 

Protestants and Romanists have two contradictory gospels that present two different ways of salvation. If one is true, the other is false. The Protestant bloodshed by the Catholics during the Inquisition sealed the contradiction forever.

Proposition #2 The wars waged by the Pope against Protestant nations had as their goal to bring all Christians under obedience to him. 

Proposition #3 When it became clear that violence would not accomplish reunification under Rome, the Jesuit order was created to undermine the Reformation by philosophic sophistry such as Molinism. They were sent forth to build universities and colleges throughout Protestant nations. These Jesuit schools Notre Dame would promote reunification with Rome through natural theology and natural apologetics that are antithetical to the Protestant doctrine of sola scriptura. Of course, Roman Catholic countries did not allow Protestants to set up universities on their soil. 

Proposition #4 Naive Evangelicals attended these Jesuit schools and were trained in Roman Catholic natural theology and philosophy. Some of these Jesuit-trained students have become professors in Evangelical colleges and universities. Some of them have even been invited to teach at such Jesuit schools as Notre Dame. Note: The Jesuits have NEVER hired a true-blue Reformation scholar to teach their students. 

Proposition #5 Using the pagan philosophy of Aristotle (via Thomas Aquinas) as a Trojan Horse, Jesuit-influenced professors introduced "natural" theology in Evangelical circles as a substitute for Bible-based Evangelical theology. Instead of going to the Bible for apologetics, theology and philosophy, these professors follow the standard Catholic methodology of relying on their own reason, experience and feelings. In other words, they base their teachings on the old pagan maxim: “Man is the measure of all things.” This is nothing short of the heresy of human autonomy. Such Jesuit doctrines as "Middle Knowledge" have become a fad as natural theology and apologetics have always been hostile to the sovereign grace of God as well as to sola scriptura.

Proposition #6 Some of Jesuit-influenced professors have become bold in their support of the ecumenical movement that has as its goal reunification with Rome. Roman Catholics such as Kreeft are embraced as "brothers" and any Protestant who objects is condemned as "mean" or "unloving."

Proposition #7 Thus UNIVERSALISM has now gained dominance in many Evangelical circles. The heresy of universalism teaches that there is not just one way of salvation but many different ways of salvation. The Bible states that the ONLY WAY to heaven is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. You must repent of your sins and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. 

But now it is said that the Roman Catholic gospel of works will save you just as much as the Protestant gospel of grace. To these professors, it does not matter that they are contradictory ways of salvation and thus different gospels. To them, there are many different ways of salvation. 

Proposition #8 The Evangelical and Catholic Accord was the first visible attempt to begin the process of reunification with Rome. The Reformation was abandoned and the gospel of the free grace of God was denied. This Accord was also endorsed and promoted by Colson and Packer.

Proposition #9 But, thanks be to God, Evangelical leaders such as John Ankerberg, James Kennedy, John MacArthur, and others saw the danger of the Accord and denounced it as heretical. It was a Trojan Horse that had, as its hidden agenda, the yoke of Rome. 

Proposition #10 Kreeft and other Roman Catholics should be denounced as non-Christians and refused the opportunity of infecting our students with popish heresies. The Catholics do not allow us to evangelize their students. Why should we allow them to evangelize our students?

Proposition #11 The ultimate agenda of Rome is not limited to making Protestants come under the Pope, but to unite all religions into a one-world religion with the Pope as its head. Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Protestants, Orthodox, the cults, the occult, native religions and witches have all been invited to join with the Pope in joint prayer meetings at the Vatican. These prayer meetings have already taken place and included representatives from all religions.

Proposition #12 Kreeft is an eloquent spokesman for this new form of universalism. His vision includes all religions worshipping Mary and the Eucharist. That this is his goal and his agenda is clear from what he wrote in Ecumenical Jihad. The following citations will demonstrate this to be irrefutably true. 

Kreeft's Vision:
"God's people" is composed of all human beings who attempt to live a good life. Protestants, Catholics, Orthodox, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, New Agers, witches, native religions, cultists, occultists, sincere atheists and agnostics are all part of the "City of God" and they all have the same Commander (God)- even if they do not acknowledge this while on earth. Once they reach heaven, they will all join with Catholics in worshipping Mary and the Eucharist. He pictures Muhammad in heaven on his knees worshipping Mary.
The Source of Kreeft’s Vision

Kreeft relates on pgs. 85f an occult experience in which he left his body and went to heaven. He claims that he had an “OBE” during a surfing accident. He does not later state that he was joking. If he were only spinning a story, he should have said so. But at all points he is dead earnest that he had a real out-of-body experience and went to heaven.
Who should he find in heaven but Confucius, Buddha, Muhammad and other pagan religious leaders. He relates how these spirit guides led him to see that they all followed God in their own way. Now in heaven, they see the full light of the Eucharist and worship Mary.

Kreeft’s Heroes
"My heroes Jesus and Socrates" p. 9
"Brother Socrates" p.118

Kreeft on Islam
"Many of our former enemies (for example, Muslims) are now our friends" p.9

"Allah is not another God...we worship the same God" p.30

"Islam, our ancient foe, is beginning to become our friend." p.37

"Why is Islam expanding so spectacularly? Because God keeps His promises and blesses those who obey His Laws and fear Him and punishes those who do not." p.38

"The emergency is so great that prudence dictates a moratorium on our polemics against each other and our attempts to convert each other" p.38

"Protestant, Orthodox, Catholic, Jewish-practice Islam: total and absolute submission and surrender to God's will" p. 39

"Islam is growing faster than Christianity in America because Muslims want to be saints more than Christians do.” 60

"The same God! The very same God we worship in Christ is the God the Jews-and the Muslims-worship." p. 160

"Perhaps in heaven the most ardent worshippers of the Eucharistic Christ will be The "outsiders", like pious Muslims." p.164

Note: Kreeft has written elsewhere on his views of Islam: The following citations are from his website.

“Allah, of course, is the same God Jews and Christians worship. Islam is not only a Western, monotheistic religion rather than an Oriental, pantheistic religion, but explicitly bases itself on the historical revelation of the God of the Jews, tracing itself to Ishmael, Isaac's brother, to whom God also promised special blessings according to Genesis.”

“In one sense Islam is a simplification of Christianity as Buddhism is a
simplification of Hinduism. But in another sense Islam adds to Christianity, for where Jews have only our 'Old Testament' Scriptures and Christians add the New Testament, Moslems also add the Koran. They accept the claims of the Jewish prophets to be sent by God. They believe Jesus deepened this revelation and that Mohammed completed it. Mohammed is 'the seal of the prophets' He tells you how to live Jesus' ethic (Jesus is seen only as a man, an ethical teacher). Actually, Islam neither merely simplifies Christianity nor merely adds to it, but reinterprets it somewhat as Christianity does to Judaism. As the Christian interpretation of the Old Testament is not the same as the Jewish one, the Moslem interpretation of the New Testament is not the same as the Christian one; the Koran authoritatively interprets the New Testament as the New interprets the Old.”

Kreeft Vision of Reunification with Rome
"The first millennium was the millennium of Christian unity...The second millennium was the millennium of Christian disunity...the third millennium will be the millennium of the resurrection of unity, reunification." p.26

Kreeft On Pagan Religions
"We can and should investigate and learn from the wisdom in other religions" p.79

"Medieval Scholastic philosophers, especially Saint Thomas, studied and used the pagan 
philosophers."

"The result of this open-minded yet critical attitude was the rich synthesis, or marriage, of faith and reason that we know as Christian philosophy." p.80

"Catholicism agrees with paganism more than with Protestantism in being robustly sacramental. Catholicism is more like African religion than Scandinavian religion...Catholics believe pagans are right and Protestants are wrong" p.150 

Kreeft On Where The Reformers Went Wrong
"Many Christian writers who thoughtlessly rejected all non-Christian writers as dangerous to the faith eventually became heretics themselves and left the Church (for example...Luther)" p. 80

Eucharistic Adoration: The Key To Ecumenicism
"The power that will reunite the Church and win the world is Eucharistic adoration." p.164

"The distinctly Catholic devotion of the Eucharist (and to Mary) may prove to be the key to victory in ecumenicism and in the "culture war." p. 172

Conclusion
The time has come for Bible-believing Christians to stand up and be counted against this new form of universalism. Did our Protestant forefathers die in vain? Was their bloodshed for nothing? The Bible you hold in your hand came from the Reformation, not from Rome. 

Religious freedom did not come from Rome but from the Reformation. It is at your own peril if you forget these historical realities. 

Kreeft and those like him are deluded as well as heretics. They are not Christians in the biblical sense. We do not really have much in common with them. By their idolatrous doctrine of the Eucharist, they deny the incarnate humanity of Jesus. Thus we do not even worship the same Christ! (See: The Trinity: Evidences and Issues)

If Kreeft comes to speak at your school, let people know that he is antichrist. If his books are used as textbooks, go to the Board of your school and reveal that heresy is being taught at your school. All you have to do to see the antichrist's one-world religion take over your church and school is to sit back and do nothing.