Tony Campolo to speak in Belfast on 23 October 2012


Recent adverts in the Belfast Telegraph have announced that Tony Campolo is to speak in The (Elim) Ulster Temple in Belfast on Tuesday 23 October. Also appearing on ‘the same bill’ will be well-known modern hymn-writer Graham Kendrick. The visit is being organised by a group called ‘Compassion’ and a leading figure in Crown Jesus Ministries based in Belfast would be supportive as an ‘ambassador’ for the work of ‘Compassion’.

Whilst I understand the evening is being organised to focus upon humanitarian matters and it is hoped that it will result in sponsorship for needy children trapped in poverty it is nevertheless being promoted as a ‘Christian’ event and that is why I believe serious concerns about the main speaker, Tony Campolo, must be aired.

The devil likes nothing more than to raise the profile of false ‘Christian’ teachers by presenting them in a very favourable light when they advocate what in many respects are worthy charitable aims such as those that will be highlighted on 23 October.

Commendable as the ‘humanitarian’ aims may be, I believe it is biblically necessary to sound a clear warning about the scripture-contradicting teachings of Tony Campolo in the hope that any who attend the planned meeting will not be drawn into becoming followers of his false teachings.

Over the years I have written various pieces expressing my concerns about the beliefs of Mr Campolo. Herewith are links to those pieces and also to some quotes by Mr Campolo that are listed on the web site I have also mentioned below. 

Tony Campolo – Shedding Light or Spreading Leven?

The ‘testimony’ of Tony Campolo

The ‘Summer Madness’ of an invite to Brian McLaren and a look inside ‘The Mind’ of Tony Campolo

A quote from this last article reads – [Campolo teaches ‘Jesus is waiting mystically and wonderfully in every person I meet…The difference between a Christian and non-Christian is not that Jesus isn’t in the non-Christian – the difference is that the Jesus who is within him is a Jesus to whom he will not surrender his life…There are those who would limit Jesus to be being present only in those who acknowledge Him as Lord and Saviour but I will not accept that limitation. I believe Jesus is present even in those who refuse him’].

This false teaching by Mr Campolo, of Jesus automatically being present in everyone, is refuted by the words of the Lord Himself. In John 14:23 Jesus made this promise to faithful believers “If a man love me he will keep my words and my Father will love him and we will come unto him and make our abode with him”. If the Lord and His Father have to come to someone to make their abode within that person (by the indwelling Spirit) it means that no member of the Triune Godhead is automatically ‘in residence’ within everyone – they only ‘take up residence’ when someone is converted to Christ – Paul wrote in Romans 8:9 “If any man have not the Spirit of Christ he is none of his”.

On there are many ‘Campolo quotes’ including the following

“What I am trying to say is that Jesus who incarnated God 2,000 years ago is mystically present and waiting to be discovered in EVERY person you and I encounter”

Tony Campolo “A Reasonable Faith” 1983 pages 59, 171 & 192


“One of the most startling discoveries of my life was the realization that the Jesus that I love, the Jesus who died for me on Calvary, that Jesus, is waiting, mystically and wonderfully, in every person I meet. I find Jesus everywhere.”

-Tony Campolo an address at Prestatyn in the UK, 1988


“…during times of reflection I sensed that believing in Jesus and living out His teachings just wasn’t enough. There was a yearning for something more, and I found that I was increasingly spiritually gratified as I adopted older ways of praying–ways that have largely been ignored by those of us in the Protestant tradition. Counter-Reformation saints like Ignatius of Loyola have become important sources of help as I have begun to learn from them modes of contemplative prayer. I practice what is known as “centering prayer,” in which a sacred word is repeated as a way to be in God’s presence.”

Cecil Andrews – ‘Take Heed’ Ministries – 10 October 2012