No. We partner with and provide resources to other ministries and well as small groups and individual congregations. But we are not dependent on any other ministry or church.
The vast majority of our support is from the generous contributions of our dedicated Friends and Partners. The remainder of our income is derived from resource sales and miscellaneous income. PTM is a 501(c)(3) charity, registered with the IRS. Contributions to PTM are tax-deductible in the U.S.
Greg Albrecht is president and CEO of Plain Truth Ministries, teaches at PTM’s online church, Christianity Without the Religion, and Editor of our two magazines. You can read a short biography here
As a nonprofit corporation, PTM is served by a board of directors. PTM’s operations are conducted by a small staff, directed by president Greg Albrecht.
Religion can be defined in various ways, but its popular connotation is any system of practice and observance intended to make people more acceptable to God. By that definition, authentic Christianity is not a religion – because authentic Christianity is not about human effort that enhances our standing with God, but about what God has done for us.
In the city of Duarte, California.
Plain Truth ministries has chosen to put its resources into the Internet, where Christianity Without the Religion (our worldwide online church) and Plain Truth radio are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week around the world. Some PTM Partners and groups of our supporters choose to sponsor our programs on local stations. Other stations run our programs free of charge, but as this varies from week to week, we have no set listing of stations.
He is part of PTM’s history, as he founded Plain Truth magazine in 1934. Although Armstrong was a popular religious broadcaster for many years, his doctrines were deeply flawed. After his death in 1986, Plain Truth magazine and its parent organization, Worldwide Church of God, underwent significant doctrinal reform, abandoning Armstrong’s flawed teachings and embracing the good news of the gospel of grace. Plain Truth Ministries was formed in 1996 and has published the new Plain Truth magazine since that time. PTM is no longer involved or affiliated with the Worldwide Church of God (itself renamed Grace Communion International). Our former history of legalistic oppression motivates PTM to warn against religious legalism, to teach sound Christian doctrine and to boldly proclaim God’s amazing grace!
James 1:27 tells us about pure and undefiled religion– implying that there is such a thing as impure and defiled religion. So not all religion is good. The idea behind many words changes over time. Religion is such a word. Religion can be used as a term for any kind of belief or faith in God. Religion thus may refer to Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, etc. Many secular individuals dismiss all religion as useless, as an emotional crutch that some people seem to need to make it through the day.
However, there is another meaning attached to the word “religion” today to which The New Testament is absolutely opposed. The popular, common denominator of religion is the idea that humans must do, perform and produce works, deeds, virtues or behaviors as stipulated by rituals, rites and regulations. The idea is that having performed ceremonies, having followed religious prescriptions, priests, pills and potions, then God is more pleased with humans than he otherwise would have been. This is the fundamental difference between biblical Christianity and religion in general (whether it be a non-Christian religion, or a practice which claims to be Christian). The gospel of Jesus Christ insists that God does for us what we cannot do for ourselves. We are, according to the gospel, incapable of pleasing and appeasing God on the basis of our works. That is the definition of religion that PTM uses– and opposes, for it is the enemy of the gospel.
Could you please differentiate between legalism and fundamentalism in an easy to understand definition? I think I understand for the most part. Is there an overlap in their definitions or are they two totally different entities? Thank you very much and I also thank Plain Truth Ministries for all it offers.
Thanks for your question— responding to it might serve to sharpen my thinking. Legalism is the religious viewpoint that proposes that our performance of deeds enhances our relationship with God. Legalism can lead one to fundamentalism. Legalism is the virus (somewhat like HIV) that leads to the full blown toxic condition of fundamentalism (somewhat like AIDS). Fundamentalism is the religious viewpoint that proposes that its teachings and practices are the one and only true religion. Fundamentalism is an environment in which legalism thrives. Fundamentalism is the organized religious/political movement that gives birth to sects, cults, exclusivist parties, groups and denominations. Fundamentalism is fueled by legalism. Thus, it would seem that all fundamentalists are legalists, but not all legalists are fundamentalists. The self-love of legalism, the glorification of human performance as something with which God is supposedly well pleased, can eventually turn into the monster of fundamentalism, which not only is about self-love, but now is adversarial, demonizing those who do not agree, eventuating in hatred, bigotry, and war. Legalism can seem harmless, in which those who are infected begin to focus on religious pills, potions, prescriptions and priests as their saviors— but it can turn into the nasty, malicious monster of fundamentalism. Our cover story, in the July-August 2007 Plain Truth, was titled “The Gathering Storm of Fundamentalism” —it might provide further insights.