My Name is Tony Jackson
Thank you for visiting TruthChristian.com. My prayer for you is that the content on this site encourages you to seek God. If you know God, I pray that you would be more and more conformed to the blessed image of His dear Son, by the inspiration and power of His adorable Spirit.
Check out the bio section below for a bit more about me and who I am.
This site is about truth. Christian Truth. Those two things in my view, are not mutually exclusive. Christian Truth is the foundation for knowing anything at all. All other knowledge is either a distortion of, borrowed from, or comes directly from the true knowledge of God the Father, His beloved Son and the Holy Spirit, all that they have done and will do. From Creation. To Redemption. To the New Creation. All in love. All by grace. All amazing.
Obviously, there are lots of opinions and ideas about the question, "what is Christian Truth?" Eastern Catholic (Orthodox). Roman Catholic (both old and novus ordo). Anglo Catholic (Anglican). Reformed Christianity, including Lutheran, Reformed, Presbyterian, Reformed Baptist, et al. Evangelical (Protestant), including Anabaptist, American Baptist, Weslyan, Pentecostal, Seventh Day Adventist, et al. In addition, there are now many new expressions, such as the Hebrew Roots movement (Messianic Judaism). Out of all of that, came many peculiar ideas, including Mormanism (LDS), Jehovah's Witnesses, and many, many others.
First and foremost, Christian Truth is truth that is revealed to us by God Himself. This is called special revelation. General revelation tells us about the beauty, majesty and glory of God who created all that there is. That revelation causes ALL men to ask in their hearts... "Where is God and how can I know Him?"
Special revelation answers that cry. The Bible is God's inspired Word given to mankind to show us who God is and what He is up to throughout all of history. From the beginning, which is Creation, to the end, which is New Creation.
The trouble is, because of our sinful ideas and because of the Protestant Reformation, a lot of us (all of us?) have our own take on what the Bible says about different subjects, such as sin, righteousness and the judgment to come.
This is why God knew we needed more than the Bible. We also need guidance to understand what God says. In the Old Testament, this guidance came generally through the Prophets, but also through Judaism itself. This is why we see Jesus straightening out disputes between leaders, such as Pharisees and Sadducees.
In the New Testament, following Jesus resurrection and ascension, Jesus established a new authority to help us understand the Bible. The Apostles. Apostolic Christianity is what the Apostles taught in the New Testament AND to their disciples in the early church. These disciples taught truth to their disciples (the Church Fathers) and Apostolic Christianity was born. Were all of those disciples perfect? Of course not. But as a whole, they understood the fundamentals, or the foundation of Christian Truth.
Ancient Christians, until about the fourth century, dealt with many (if not MOST) of the same issues that most or all of these expressions deal with. They rallied against wrong thinking (called heresy) and distilled and expressed Biblical thinking (called orthodoxy - literally... "right worship") in creeds. The greatest (in my opinion) and most thorough of creeds was called the Nicean Creed.
Wikipedia summarizes it pretty well:
The Nicene Creed... "is a statement of belief widely used in Christian liturgy. It is called Nicene /ˈnaɪsiːn/ because it was originally adopted in the city of Nicaea (present day İznik, Turkey) by the First Council of Nicaea in 325. In 381, it was amended at the First Council of Constantinople, and the amended form is referred to as the Nicene or the Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed. (Source)
One of the reasons this creed is so enduring is that nearly ALL true Christian churches have accepted this creed for over 1600 years!
My goal for this website it to stay within the boundaries of the early church creeds, and to expound those doctrines from the most Holy Scriptures. Am I going to mess up? Undoubtedly, yes! Am I going to say things you don't agree with? For sure. I might even say a few things that make you mad.
So please... For Christ's sake, be patient with me. I know it's a lot to ask. I spent half of my life and most of my ministry, getting mad at other people, or at best "tolerating" other folk because they did not agree with my narrow understanding of the truth.
But thank God and God alone for awakening me to my harshness and narrowness. My heart's cry is that as Christians, we would be united about things that matter and still truly love each other when we disagree about a whole lot of other stuff.
I was born in Irian Jaya, Indonesia in the 1960's. My parents were evangelical missionaries with a mission called "TEAM." The people there were stone age, primitive people with no written alphabet. They were also Animists who worshiped and feared their ancestors and spirit beings. My parents sacrificed eight years of their lives to bring the good news of the Gospel to a primitive people who were crying out from their hearts, "Who is God and how can we know Him." There are many churches in that tribe today. Bless you dad. Bless you mom.
I was four years old when we returned to the United States. My upbringing was primarily baptist and generally, evangelical. Fundamentalist in many respects.
I grew up primarily in southern California (Inland Empire). After high school, I served two years (active) in the US Army, stationed in west Germany.
After military service, I enrolled in Multnomah Bible College (now Multnomah University) in Portland, Oregon. While in college I met and married Amy, my dear bride of more than 30 years as of this writing.
Upon graduation from Multnomah, I worked for a couple of years and then accepted a position as a youth pastor with the Christian and Missionary Alliance in Woodland Hills, CA, located in the San Fernando Valley.
After three years of service in that church, I enrolled in Grand Rapids Baptist Seminary (now Grand Rapids Theological Seminary) in Michigan. While in seminary, I also pastored a church in Muskegon, MI.
It was during Seminary, partly "under the influence" of some of my professors and partly from my own reading, I became increasingly "Reformed." I became so "Reformed" in fact that by the end of Seminary, I was sort of forced out of my denomination (The Christian and Missionary Alliance), because I no longer believed in their doctrine.
After seminary, we moved to Texas. The main reason we moved was to help my wife's mom who was sick (she had paranoid schizophrenia), and she was getting sicker all the time. She eventually died from that disease and it was an awful thing. I'm sure along the way, I'll write about mental illness and a few things I have learned along the way.
While in east Texas, we planted a church. It was during that time, I became what is called "Reformed Baptist." The version I chose was a harsh, narrow version. I was right. Period. Pretty much, everyone else was wrong. Period. It was quite heady and rather scholarly and mostly... sinful. My greatest sin, and I am speaking for myself here, is that I forgot about the one thing that is above EVERYTHING else (including godliness!! See 2nd Peter 1:6). That thing of course is... LOVE.
Fast forward to 2012. Around that time, ISIS started killing Christians on T.V. The persecution of Christians in the middle east started to get a lot of press. Christian leaders, including American big shot pastors and leaders were talking about it. Everyone was talking about it! Then, one day, it hit me like a ton of bricks. Most of the Christians being killed were Orthodox, Coptic or in general terms, CATHOLIC! Oh my gosh, I thought, they are not even Christians. They are Catholic!
I guess that is what God used to begin to soften my heart. A very close friend and excellent scholar and thinker (Rev. Doug Van Dorn), called me out. He asked me a very simple question (or a couple of questions). Do these "Christians" believe in the Nicene Creed? Yup. That was true. Are they enduring in their Christian faith until the end? Many were. Then, why are you worried about it? Some great questions!
Over the course of the following two years, I approached things very differently. I got to know a lot of Roman Catholic, Orthodox and Anglican Christians. Many of these folks became friends and I often stand in awe as to the genuineness and fervor of their faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.
Some people might read these words and think (or say)... "Well, Tony has become an ecumenical Christian." I hope that you will say that. But please, drop the word "ecumenical." It is man made. It is probably meant to be pejorative. I hope that you will simply say, "Well praise God, Tony has begun to act more like a Christian." For this reason (there are so many divisive Christians), I have closed the comments on the blog. If you have a beef, our something good you want to say, send me an email. If its helpful, I'll publish it.
It's 2020 now. Amy and I have five adorable kids. One married (to an also adorable kid). One lives away. In 2019, we moved back to Beaumont, CA to help care for my aging parents. It is a beautiful place (Beaumont actually means, "Beautiful Mountains"). I help some people with marketing and reputation management (like Google reviews). Both of us help people with life insurance, annuities and financial planning.
If you want to reach out to me, you can do it through the contact page. Thank you again for stopping by!