Judgement of GotQuestions.org
GotQuestions presents itself as the one-stop shop for answers to all your questions about God and the Bible, from a Christian perspective. We show that this is not true – their perspective is their own, one born of flesh, not the Spirit of God. His thoughts and ways are not men’s, and men’s are not His, no matter if they claim to represent Him.
Let the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ speak against the presumptuous mockers and wicked men who take and use His Name in vain. Founder of GotQuestions.org, S. Michael Houdmann, claims to have received a “vision” from God “for helping people find answers to their Bible questions through the internet.”
His definition of a vision from God will not be found in the Bible, and the vision that is found there, Michael Houdmann does not believe in.
We say his vision and work is from none other than the god of this world, Satan, who has given them their “ministry.” This we know by the answers they give to many questions, which answers, presuming to be Biblical, are from another Bible, not God’s. That is to say, they preach an anti-Christ gospel, as Peter prophesied:
2 Peter 3:15-17 MKJV
(15) And think of the long-suffering of our Lord as salvation (as our beloved brother Paul also has written to you according to the wisdom given to him
(16) as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which the unlearned and unstable pervert, as also they do the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction).
(17) Therefore, beloved, knowing beforehand, beware lest being led away with the error of the lawless, you fall from your own steadfastness.
Some answers are good and true, but with many of their answers, one will find subtle, if not blatant, error – the works of the serpentine beast from the Garden of Eden, feeding unwary and unstable souls by the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil – carnal reasonings and men’s false doctrines.
GotQuestions writes, “The cults, false religions, and other semi-Christian groups have websites as well. Some of these sites perform much the same function that we do. The answers these sites provide are often very unbiblical and lead searching people down a false path – potentially to their own spiritual destruction.”
There is no doubt whatsoever that cults, false religions, and “semi-Christian” groups perform much the same function as GotQuestions – preaching a false gospel, misrepresenting Jesus Christ and His will. There is also no doubt that GotQuestions would condemn our site, as we condemn GotQuestions’ work. The differences are that 1) we are of God and 2) this will be demonstrated, for God will make manifest who is the false one. God is finished winking at the sweet works of Satan that destroy in comely ways. See The Lovely Essence of Satan and The Nature of Deception.
They write, “So, the GotQuestions staff began to pray, how can we prevent people from visiting these unbiblical sites?”
If their figures are true, and we don’t have any good reason to question them, they receive about 100 questions a day. Apparently God did not answer their prayer, for according to their own testimony, people are visiting their unbiblical site in increasing numbers.
Their History page states:
“History of GotQuestions.org
GotQuestions.org was founded in February of 2002. God gave our founder, S. Michael Houdmann, a vision for helping people find answers to their Bible questions through the internet. Little did he envision how quickly God would turn GotQuestions.org into a full-time ministry. We quickly discovered what a great need there was for a quality Bible answer service on the internet.
Within one month of our launch, GotQuestions.org was receiving over 30 questions a day. The volunteer staff grew from 5 writers, to 10, to 20, to 50, and ultimately to our current staff of over 185. At the same time, the volume of questions steadily increased. We are currently averaging 110 questions per day. In response, we opened our question answering ministry to volunteers whom the Lord brings our way. We continue to praise the Lord for our volunteer writers. They are what makes this ministry possible!
Just as in any other field, the internet is a battlefield. This is equally true in the spiritual realm. The cults, false religions, and other semi-Christian groups have websites as well. Some of these sites perform much the same function that we do. The answers these sites provide are often very unbiblical and lead searching people down a false path – potentially to their own spiritual destruction. (Note: we are by no means claim to be the only site on the internet that answers people’s questions in a God-honoring way. In fact, there are others.) So, the GotQuestions staff began to pray, how can we prevent people from visiting these unbiblical sites? In response to our prayers, God led us to search engine optimization and search engine advertising. By designing our webpages to be search engine friendly, we achieve good listings in the search engine. For example, we seek to be listed highly every time someone searches for Bible Questions, Bible Answers, and Christian Answers – because that is what we do. We determined that we would strive to be listed higher than the sites that do not proclaim the truth – no matter the cost – trusting that God would provide the funding we would need. God has met our needs every step of the way, as we knew He would (Philippians 4:19).
As our website traffic increased and the volume of questions continued to grow, we recognized the need to have our most frequently asked questions and answers posted online for easy access. We currently have over 1500 of our most frequently asked questions posted online in our archives. We started posting a question of the week online and immediately received requests for it to be sent out via email as well. Many ‘questioners’ would ask us to recommend a good Christian book that would help them with their question, so we began including recommended books along with the answers, and created an affiliate bookstore online.
In November of 2005, we began the process of translating what we believe to be our most important webpages into other languages. It is our goal to translate our 52 “most important” articles into every major world language. Beyond that, it is our goal to translate at least 200 webpages into the world languages that are most prominent on the internet. There are, sadly, many languages in which there is very little to no quality Christian content available online.
We continue to pray and dream regarding how God would expand and improve the ministry of GotQuestions.org! We praise the Lord for what He has accomplished through us and in us! We look forward for how God will use GotQuestions.org in the future (Jeremiah 29:11).” (end quote)
GotQuestions begins, as is common with nominal Christian sites, with a “statement of faith,” rather than a “statement of doctrine.” Calling it a “statement of faith” indicates faith in doctrine, not in God. Anyone can list doctrine and call it faith, anyone can claim faith in God, but who has true faith? A statement of doctrine is more honest and accurate; it simply states what their doctrines are, whether they claim to believe in God or not. The Christian walk is about faith in God, not in knowledge or doctrine.
We begin with a look at each of their sections in their “statement of faith” (keep their page open while you read along):
Section 1: The Bible
They say, “While still using the individual writing styles of the human authors, the Holy Spirit perfectly guided them to ensure they wrote precisely what He wanted written, without error or omission (2 Peter 1:21).”
It’s fine to say the Holy Spirit inspired the original writings, and we can agree, in part. However, the problem comes with translations and interpretations of the Scriptures, as well as omissions and additions men have presumed to make. Read How We View, Interpret, and Use the Scriptures and Versions. The transmission of a pure and untainted message isn’t as simple as they and other evangelicals make it out to be.
Section 2: God
Here, we have two problems:
One, they simply repeat the letter of the Bible in terms of what it says about God. It is fine to use terms to describe God, but do they know Him, or is it only head knowledge? One should think that if they state that they believe the Bible is God’s Word, there is no point in repeating its words, in this instance, without telling us what those words mean to them.
Two, they speak of that blasphemous orthodox doctrine of the trinity. We cover that demonic doctrine in another paper addressing GotQuestions: The Asininity of the Trinity.
Section 3: Jesus Christ
To which we can only say, “Amen!” We find no fault there at all. However, read Jesus Christ Is God to see where we differ with GotQuestions, despite their words with which we agree.
They say, “We hold that His death is sufficient to provide salvation for all who receive Him as Savior (John 1:12; Acts 16:31)….”
This is true, and in due time, all will receive Him as Savior, bowing the knee to Him and confessing Him as Lord:
“Turn to Me, and be saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other. I have sworn by Myself, the word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that to Me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear” (Isaiah 45:22-23 MKJV).
Section 4: The Holy Spirit
Here we have two problems:
One, the Holy Spirit is Jesus Christ. They speak of Him as though He is a separate personality, an expression of the erroneous trinity doctrine. While the Bible refers to the Holy Spirit, and the Son, and the Father, there is but One Person. Read our section Jesus Christ Is God.
Two, they diminish the reality and importance of the gifts of the Spirit. This is because they have never received the Spirit of Jesus Christ. They have never known Him as Lord or they would not be able to disregard the gifts as they do. It is anti-Christ. No new birth, no gifts; no gifts, no Spirit; no Spirit, no Jesus Christ; no Jesus Christ, no faith in God. “The fool has said in his heart there is no God.” All of the Scriptures they reference about the gifts only validate their existence, never their diminishing or putting away.
Section 5: Angels and Demons
Here we have at least two problems:
One, read for yourself and nowhere will you find that Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28 speak of Satan, as is so commonly believed in nominal Christendom. So where do they get that notion? (If Satan is a man, however, then there is something there.)
Two, when they speak of Satan and his demons being eternally punished in the Lake of Fire, their meaning of “eternal” is a never-ending span of time, or an age without an end. They are so wrong. Read The Great Promise of the Lake of Fire and the Second Death and The True, Scriptural Meanings of “Forever, “Everlasting,” and “Hell”.
Section 6: Humanity
We agree here for the most part, except that the verse they give to substantiate that humans choose to sin (Romans 3:23) does not say that, and Romans 6:23 does not say that all sin is exceedingly offensive to God, as they suggest. (This is not to say that men have not chosen to sin or that sin isn’t offensive to God.)
These people are loose with their words and with their usage of Scripture, believing and repeating that which has been told them through doctrine and tradition of other men, which demonstrates an artificial faith and total lack of reverence for God, despite their sincerity.
Section 7: Salvation
We cannot and would not argue with what they present here, for we know these things to be very true, having experienced and learned them directly from God, not by indoctrination, as it seems they have.
However, one of their questions deals with repentance: “Question: ‘What is repentance and is it necessary for salvation?’”
They are right when they say:
1) “In the Bible, the word repent means ‘to change one’s mind.’”
2) “The full biblical definition of repentance is a change of mind that results in a change of action.”
3) “To repent, in relation to salvation, is to change your mind in regard to Jesus Christ.”
4) “It is crucially important that we understand repentance is not a work we do to earn salvation. No one can repent and come to God unless God pulls that person to Himself (John 6:44).”
They err when they say, “Turning from sin is not the definition of repentance,” although the next portion is true – “but it is one of the results of genuine, faith-based repentance towards the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Paul Cohen writes:
John the Immerser, whose express mission it was to come preaching, and baptizing unto, repentance, also gave practical things to do to the people who were listening to him:
“And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then? He answered and said to them, He who has two coats, let him give to him who has none. And he who has food, let him do likewise. And tax-collectors also came to be baptized and said to him, Teacher, what shall we do? And he said to them, Continue to do no more than that commanded to you. And the soldiers also asked of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said to them, Do not forcibly extort anyone, nor accuse any falsely. And be content with your wages” (Luke 3:10-14 MKJV).
We tell people the right thing to do, not because we are expecting them to be able to do it without faith, but using the Law as a schoolmaster to bring them to Christ and His faith.
There is the planting of repentance before repentance blooms in full. The Lord said to me in ‘87 that He had brought me to a place of repentance, yet I had begun to turn years before that when things were required of me.
Removing the turning from sin from repentance is like removing the oxygen from water. What do you have left?
GotQuestions writes: “It is impossible to place your faith in Jesus Christ as the Savior without first changing your mind about who He is and what He has done.”
This is the “accepting Jesus as your Savior” false gospel. Despite what they say about it being God’s doing, they are doing it themselves and don’t know the difference. No one has faith prior to coming to Christ, that is, godly faith. And coming to Christ, changing our minds about Him, is not something we can do. God must draw us. He is the Author and Finisher of our faith.
They also say: “Biblical repentance is changing your mind about Jesus Christ and turning to God in faith for salvation (Acts 3:19).”
They are talking about man’s faith, which is subject to, and moved by, carnal reasoning and convincing. It is not at all God’s gift of faith in Christ, His faith. So they do many things that track with the words in the Scriptures, yet without Him. These are works of the flesh, exposed when the Light comes, just as Jesus exposed the “righteous” Pharisees.
Back to Victor:
I must add that when the Lord began to draw me to Himself, I needed to put away, or at least TRY to put away, those things I knew I should not be doing. He wasn’t permitting me to continue in my vices and various sins and say, “It’s up to God. I’ll just continue doing what I do until He changes or delivers me.” I had to try to repent of sins even though I would fail. I had to try to get right with Him and fail. Failure is part of the package.
It was His grace that gave me to fail, so that I might know for certain that I needed His grace to prevail. I discovered I could not repent, yet He required it of me and encouraged me to keep going until He met me and gave me His gift of repentance. Truly, even the desire to repent comes from God.
We must not be misled into thinking that repentance does not include the need to turn from our sins, which is the error I perceive to be operating in the GotQuestions answer. Peter spoke to Simon the sorcerer, which words give us a sound perspective on repentance:
Acts 8:18-24 MKJV
(18) And when Simon saw that the Holy Spirit was given through laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money,
(19) saying, Give me this power also, that on whomever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Spirit.
(20) But Peter said to him, May your silver perish with you, because you have thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.
(21) You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for your heart is not right in the sight of God.
(22) Therefore repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray God if perhaps the thought of your heart may be forgiven you.
(23) For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bond of iniquity.
(24) And answering Simon said, You pray to the Lord for me that none of these things which you have spoken may come on me.
Yes, repentance is a changing of the mind, a turning to Christ, but it is also, and very importantly, a turning from sin and from wickedness, which Peter counseled Simon to do. Repentance is to turn from the evil, the wrong, the erroneous, and the Devil to the good, the right, the true, and the Lord. It is turning from doing our own thing independently of God to doing His will.
Section 8: The Church
We have several questions concerning this section on the Church:
One, they say, “We believe that the Church, the Body of Christ, is a spiritual organism made up of all believers of this present age….”
If by “this present age,” they mean this world in this life, at this present time or the time since Christ, we disagree (I don’t see what else they could mean). We say the Church includes all those who have gone before us:
Hebrews 11:37-40; 12:1 MKJV
(37) They were stoned, they were sawed in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented.
(38) The world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains and dens and caves of the earth.
(39) And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, did not receive the promise,
(40) for God had provided some better thing for us, that they should not be made perfect without us.
(1) Therefore since we also are surrounded with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily besets us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us….
“But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the first-born who are written in Heaven, and to God the judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, and to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and to blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel” (Hebrews 12:22-24 MKJV).
Two, they say, “We believe in the ordinances of believer’s water baptism by immersion as a testimony to Christ and identification with Him….”
I have seen many people water baptized without a genuine change in life, while others, never having been baptized in water, live a righteous life of faith because they have been baptized in the Holy Spirit, which is the whole point (water depicts receiving, or being immersed in, the Spirit). Water baptism avails nothing, but GotQuestions makes the figure a major point while being ignorant of the substance, the baptism with the Holy Spirit. Read our Water Baptism section.
The baptism in the Holy Spirit is the entrance, that is, the new birth, into the Body of Christ, the Church:
“For also by one Spirit we are all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether bond or free, even all were made to drink into one Spirit” (1 Corinthians 12:13 MKJV).
Not having ever been made a part of the Church, how can these people speak authoritatively about it?
Three, they say, “We believe in… the Lord’s Supper as a remembrance of Christ’s death and shed blood (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:41-42, 18:8; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26).”
While they place importance upon a physical ordinance – the “Lord’s Supper,” with capital letter reverence – they do not eat His flesh or drink His blood, which, again, is the whole point of the walk of faith in Christ:
John 6:48-58 MKJV
(48) I am the Bread of life.
(49) Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and died.
(50) This is the Bread which comes down from Heaven, so that a man may eat of it and not die.
(51) I am the Living Bread which came down from Heaven. If anyone eats of this Bread, he shall live forever. And truly the bread that I will give is My flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
(52) Then the Jews argued with one another, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?
(53) Then Jesus says to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man, and drink His blood, you do not have life in yourselves.
(54) Whoever partakes of My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.
(55) For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed.
(56) He who partakes of My flesh and drinks My blood dwells in Me, and I in him.
(57) As the living Father has sent Me, and I live through the Father, so he who partakes of Me, even he shall live by Me.
(58) This is the Bread which came down from Heaven, not as your fathers ate the manna, and died; he who partakes of this Bread shall live forever.
Jesus was not speaking of the “Lord’s Supper,” as nominal Christians know it, a mere physical ordinance that never did anything for anyone. He was speaking of a walk of faith and obedience, trusting Him for one’s life. He was speaking in figurative terms, just as with the foot washing, which some have also taken literally.
I have seen many thousands keep the “Lord’s Supper” as a ritual while having only a profession of faith and no reality in Christ. On the other hand, I know those who have never partaken of the formal ordinance, yet eat His flesh and drink His blood daily, abiding in Him.
Only those who know Him know what I am talking about; otherwise, it is impossible to understand. That is why the 70 walked away when He spoke those words:
“From that time many of His disciples went back, and walked no more with Him” (John 6:66 KJV).
Many walk away from this understanding today, including GotQuestions.
Four, they say, “We believe in the Great Commission as the primary mission of the Church. It is the obligation of all believers to witness, by word and life, to the truths of God’s Word.”
GotQuestions knows little, if anything, about the newborn nature of God, or they would not speak in terms of legalism and obligation. True believers are not obligated to slavish duty. They naturally testify because it is in them to do so, just as it is in a dog to bark. Dogs do not bark to meet the obligations of a dog; they just bark. This is so with real believers, who speak and do out of what they are. GotQuestions tries to sprout wings and fly, thinking to please God.
Furthermore, true witnesses of Jesus Christ are witnesses not unto “the truths of God’s Word” (meaning the Bible as they understand it) but unto the Lord Jesus Christ:
“But you shall receive power, the Holy Spirit coming upon you. And you shall be witnesses to Me both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8 MKJV).
Glibly, they say, “The gospel of the grace of God is to be preached to all the world.” Just what is the Gospel? Do they know? To whom do they preach and how? Are they suggesting that every believer is to preach to all the world? They know nothing of the leading of the Spirit of God for individual believers.
“The Spirit breathes where He desires, and you hear His voice, but you do not know from where He comes, and where He goes; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit” (John 3:8 MKJV).
Section 9: Things to Come
We find much wrong in this section.
One, the escapist doctrine of the rapture is offensive, highly insulting to those who have shed their blood in suffering, and entirely unBiblical. Jesus Christ brings us through the fires of tribulation, not away from them. If it is His way to save His sons and daughters from the tribulation, how does one explain the terrible atrocities suffered by the faithful throughout history who had no escape? Where was their rapture?
GotQuestions interprets the allegedly supportive Scriptures for their doctrine carnally, without revelation or understanding. They refer to Titus 2:13:
Titus 2:11-14 MKJV
(11) For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,
(12) teaching us that having denied ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live discreetly, righteously and godly, in this present world,
(13) looking for the blessed hope, and the appearance of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,
(14) Who gave Himself for us that He might redeem us from all iniquity and purify to Himself a special people, zealous of good works.
We have experienced the appearance of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, which is what all saints experience when they celebrate the Third Feast, overcoming and entering rest. The Kingdom of God comes without observation and is within, as Jesus declared (Luke 17:20-21). Is He the liar or fool these people inadvertently make Him out to be?
They also refer to 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18:
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 MKJV
(13) But I would not have you ignorant, brothers, concerning those who are asleep, that you be not grieved, even as others who have no hope.
(14) For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will also bring with Him all those who have fallen asleep through Jesus.
(15) For we say this to you by the Word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord shall not go before those who are asleep.
(16) For the Lord Himself shall descend from Heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ shall rise first.
(17) Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air. And so we shall ever be with the Lord.
(18) Therefore comfort one another with these words.
These are spiritual words and figurative language with spiritual fulfillment. Again, the Kingdom of God does not come with observation.
Two, they say, “We believe in the visible and bodily return of Christ to the earth with His saints….”
The Lord does indeed return physically, in His Body, His people, in whom He is formed:
“My children, for whom I again travail until Christ should be formed in you” (Galatians 4:19 MKJV).
When the saints mature, He becomes manifest in them to repeat and even exceed the works He did on earth when in His flesh:
“Truly, truly, I say to you, He who believes on Me, the works that I do he shall do also, and greater works than these he shall do, because I go to My Father” (John 14:12 MKJV).
Those who look for a physical coming of the Lord are no different from the Jews in their carnal expectations. The Jews of Jesus’ day erroneously expected a military/political Messiah to physically put down the secular powers and raise physical Israel to reign over all the earth with a physical throne set up in Jerusalem. This physical fulfillment didn’t happen then, and the physical fulfillment won’t happen now, or ever.
Three, they say, “…the wicked to eternal punishment in the lake of fire…”
While the Lake of Fire will do its work, the wicked will not be in it forever, time without end, but they will be purged with the perfect fire of God and made free and clear of all corruption and wickedness. Their deliverance will come as with us and all others, by the blood of the Lamb, by grace through faith, through repentance of sin, being granted a new heart, in which will be written His Law. Again, read The Great Promise of the Lake of Fire and the Second Death and The True, Scriptural Meanings of “Forever, “Everlasting,” and “Hell”, both found under The Restitution of All Things.
There has been no greater lie told to defame and misrepresent God, Who is Love, than the one of souls subjected to eternal torment. It is perfectly blasphemous, antiChrist, and antiScriptural, provably so. Read Diabolical Doctrine: Never-ending Torment.
Those who hear our words and do not believe are already before the Great White Throne judgment. As we judge, our judgment is just, not according to appearance, but according to the Mind of Christ Jesus, Who first judged us.
Let it be known that we are not here to condemn any man. We are here to speak the truth. If men are free to speak lies and blasphemies, how much more do we have the right to speak the truth that contradicts their speech?
After writing this piece, GotQuestions sent us a request to financially support their work. How does their request and the nature of this work square with The True Marks of a Cult? While they say some true things, the fingerprints of man are all over this work, but God’s work is pure, with no inconsistency or shadow of turning in that which He says and gives to man.
How sure is a man in his knowledge! “I know; therefore I am!” It’s been this way ever since Adam and Eve ate from the forbidden Tree. The only way out of this state comes by faith and obedience, which allow men access to the Tree of Life and to become as He is in this world. Then it’s, “I am, therefore I know!”