Promise Keepers is a national movement for men only "dedicated
to uniting men through vital relationships to become godly influences
in their world."
What do the Promise Keepers believe and practice? From official
publications of the organization the following beliefs are worthy
- The Promise Keepers Statement of Faith (creed) has five planks.
Number 4 states, "We believe in the personality and deity
of the Holy Spirit, that he performs the miracle of the new birth
in an unbeliever and indwells believers, enabling them to live
a godly life." Number 5: "[T]hat alienation can be removed
only by accepting through faith alone God's gift of salvation"
(Promise Keepers, Men's Conferences, 1996).
- There are seven promises a promise keeper must make. Number
1: "A Promise Keeper is committed to honor Jesus Christ through
worship, prayer, and obedience to God's Word through the power
of the Holy Spirit." Number 5 "A Promise Keeper is committed
to support the mission of his church by honoring and praying for
his pastor and by actively giving his time and resources."
Number 6: "A Promise Keeper is committed to reach beyond
any racial and denominational barriers to demonstrate the power
of biblical unity" (ibid., p. 6).
- "Conference Ministry: Each year Promise Keepers plan
and organize twoday stadium events throughout the nation.
By attending you will join men from around the world for worship,
prayer and teaching" (ibid.) These 2 day conferences at a
cost of $60 each are scheduled from April through October in the
following major cities in 1996: Los Angeles, Kansas City, Seattle,
Detroit, Minneapolis, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., Boise, Syracuse,
Charlotte, Denver, Chicago, Oakland, Pittsburgh, San Diego, Indianapolis,
New Orleans, Eugene, New York City, Memphis, Jacksonville, and
Dallas/Ft. Worth. Thousands of men are expected at each city.
In four cities they were "sold out" in early 1996. Some
of the topics uniformly discussed in all conferences include "Meeting
God: Reconciling you with your Heavenly Father" and "Walking
in your Brother's Shoes: Embracing Diversity in the Body of Christ."
- Under the heading "Worship Team" is "Maranatha!
Promise Band" and then "Special Music" by different
persons. On June 78, 1996 at Syracuse Max Lucado is listed
as a speaker (ibid., p. 15). On page 32 his picture is shown and
he is listed as the pulpit minister, Oak Hills Church of Christ,
San Antonio, Texas.
- Iis an official publication of Promise Keepers. The January,
1996 edition gives the 1995 Conferences Review. Editor David Halbrook
stated, "[Promise Keepers is a Christcentered ministry
devoted to uniting men through vital relationships to become godly
men" (p. 2). Coach Bill McCartney, Founder of Promise Keepers,
wrote, "We are living in exhilarating times, when masses
of men across the country are gathering by the thousands to worship
Jesus Christ, and learning what it is to be godly men" (p.
13). Here are some quotes about the "Year in Review"
in 1995. At the Pontiac Silverdome, April 28-29, "An amazing
7,000 men responded to Luis Palau's opening night invitation to
accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior." The total gathering
was 72,280. At Atlanta 69,000 men gathered and "hundreds
of men and young boys walked forward to recommit their lives to
Jesus Christ." At Seattle "God's Spirit had clearly
tugged at the heart of each man, bringing conviction in the areas
of reconciliation." In attendance were 63,000 men. At Minneapolis
61,600 came and they were "broken by God's Word and renewed
by His Spirit." Also, on "Friday night altar call had
men jamming the aisles." At Oakland with 49,000 present "Friday
night ... brought thousands forward at the invitation to receive
Jesus as their Lord and Savior."
- On February 1315, 1996 the Promise Keepers Men's Clergy
Conference was held in Atlanta. Promise Keepers National Director
of Prayer, Steve Shanklin declared that he "is blessed to
have seen 121 prayer networks and 13,000 intercessors organized
throughout this country to pray without ceasing for God's power
to touch our clergy." Shanklin asks for daily intercession
in the following areas: that God would pour out His Spirit on
our nation's clergymen; that God would impart new vision to each
pastor (p. 14).
- Also, listed in Men of Action is a twopage spread
about "resources" of books and tapes which are available
to purchase such as: The Power of, Promise Keeper ($13),
Awesome Power of Shared Belief ($13) and many others.
What Do They Believe?
From the above documented statements what are their doctrinal
- It is a religious movement that encompasses al denominations.
It is alldenominational rather the' nondenominational.
It is ecumenical. Acceptance 0 many churches is an inherent belief
rather than the "one body."
- The plan of salvation is "faith only" and coming
to God by prayer at the altar.
- The special empowerment in a mysterious ant miraculous way
is given to the Holy Spirit in the live' of people.
- It is loaded with an emphasis of emotionalism and experiential
religion. This is not spirituality in the New Testament sense.
- The "clergy" or pastor system is recognized a! being
taught in the Bible.
- Instrumental music is used in the worship.
Men Who Make the Promises
Those who promote and participate must of neces sity reject the
following Bible teaching: baptism for the remission of sins and
not by faith only; obeying the gospel rather than the prayer system
of salvation; depending on a "thus saith the Lord" in
the Bible rather than "feelings"; the Bible as the only
guide rather than a special and direct operation of the Holy Spirit;
the church of the New Testament is Christ's one body rather than
believing in "the church of your choice"; Christian
worship includes singing without the use of mechanical instrumental
music; fellowship with those "who walk in the light"
rather than those who teach error along with truth.
Therefore, to be a Promise Keeper a man just reject and ignore
such Bible passages as: Acts 2:38; 2 Thess. 1:79; 2 Tim.
3:1617; Eph. 4:46; 5:19; Matt. 16:18.