WND: A former church has been taken over and converted to a mosque in a rural North Carolina county, and a group of Christian pastors took part in the conversion ceremony in an effort to show mutual respect for their Muslim neighbors.

Crosses have been removed from the former church’s facade and steeple, and mosque leader Ali Muhammad turned them over to the group of pastors.

“What they were attempting to do is honor our tradition and so they wanted to turn the crosses over to us,” said the Rev. Jim Melnyk, pastor of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Smithfield, a small town in Johnston County about 45 minutes south of Raleigh. “They were reaching out to us, and we were reaching out to them.”

Melnyk said he was joined by pastors from the United Methodist Church, United Church of Christ and three different Baptist congregations at Saturday’s ceremony, which marked the official conversion of a former Pentecostal church into a mosque. more …

Opinion: Christianity is being corrupted but not by Islam. The falling away began with a theology in the 2nd century BC with church theologian, Origen, commonly noted as the ‘father of the allegory’ who began a quest of allegorizing Scripture.

Origen was preceded by Gaius and followed by Chrysostom and Augustine who together explained away four-fifths of prophetic Scripture as symbolic or allegorical.

With Scripture, and especially prophecy up for interpretation (2 Peter 1:20), it was an easy jump to Replacement Theology (the church replaces Israel in God’s plan), and Covenant Theology (the church is Israel).

It is especially important for Christians to see that the final church, whom Jesus described to John (Rev. 3:14-22), would come about after six churches over 2000 years. It is equally important to understand why the apostate church of Laodicea comes after the church at Philadelphia.

This is a good time to review the 7 churches of Revelation 1-3 chronologically:

Ephesus means darling, or beloved. Ephesus represents the 1st century church. The church worked to uphold the Gospel but became too involved in works and neglected its first love, Jesus.

Smyrna means crushed. Smyrna is the 2nd-3rd century persecuted church under the Caesars of Rome. The Smyrna church began allegorizing Scripture and corresponds to the beginning of Replacement Theology, or transferring the blessings of Israel to the church.

Pergamum means mixed marriage, the mix of pagan and Christian beliefs corresponding with the 4th century when it became the official religion of Rome.

Thyatira (4th-5th century) means continual sacrifice that keeps Christ on the cross corresponding to the Catholic church. It is the first church whose members are divided into two categories: the saved and the unsaved.

Sardis means remnant and corresponds to the Protestant church when Martin Luther (1517) led the church out of Catholicism which had distorted Scripture. Sardis also began Covenant Theology declaring that the church is Israel and Israel is the church.

Philadelphia means brotherly love and represents the Evangelical church of the 1800’s. Philadelphia led the church back to a literal interpretation of scripture, pre-tribulation rapture, 1000-year literal reign of Christ on earth, and Israel as separate and distinct from the church in God’s plan.

Philadelphia also corresponds with Dispensational theology. It is the church that prepared the way and supported the rebirth of Israel and it is the only church that was shown an open door (rapture) to meet Christ in the air (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18).

Laodicea means the people rule. It is the final apostate church that will form after the rapture. Jesus told this church that because it was neither hot nor cold He would spew it from His mouth.

Once men lose the literal and perfect word of Scripture, Satan has a foothold.