When what you’re reading in your Bible and what is coming from the pulpits aren’t aligning.

When what you’re reading in your Bible and what is coming from the pulpits aren’t aligning.

“For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.” 2 Corinthians 11:4

As unsettling changes take place in your Christian environment, you might find yourself in this scenario:

  1. In my Christian reading, I get a gritty feeling about a phrase here or a teaching there. Then . . .
  2. I sense that new meanings are being applied to established Christian terms. Then . . .
  3. I find outright heresy in books and/or sermons.
  4. I notice certain names repeated in those sermons or in the endnotes of books.
  5. I voice concern to my minister, but he’s dismissive: “Now, now, we can’t all agree on everything.”
  6. I see acceptance of practices that I’ve discovered are misleading: Eastern wellness techniques . . .
  7. and contemplative prayer . . .
  8. and interspirituality.
  9. But I also wonder if I’m missing out, if I’m not as spiritual as others who are having “experiences.”
  10. I come to realize that I can’t blindly follow authorities; they may be losing their grasp of the Scriptures. I’ll get into the Word for myself, stay connected to the church [the body of Christ] and to the real Jesus.

That gritty feeling

A phrase or idea sounds “off” in a seemingly solid book: “the Christ-thing which has no name.” (John Ortberg, The Life You’ve Always Wanted); “Our souls are those sacred centers where all is one.” (Henri Nouwen, Bread for the Journey); “There is nothing wrong . . . with eroticism in worship.” (Tony Campolo, Adventures in Missing the Point)

Same vocabulary, different dictionary

Terms that have traditionally been associated with the church have been infused with new meaning, like: Christ, God, atonement, kingdom, silence, spirituality, meditation, incarnational . . .

Outright false teaching on foundational doctrines

Rob Bell on the virgin birth, Jesus’ deity, truth of Scripture: If “Jesus had a real, earthly, biological father named Larry, and archaeologists find Larry’s tomb and do DNA samples and prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the virgin birth was really just a bit of mythologizing the Gospel writers threw in to appeal to the followers of the Mithra and Dionysian religious cults that were hugely popular at the time,” Bell says, we wouldn’t lose any significant part of our faith, since it’s more about how we live. (Velvet Elvis, p. 26)

Brian McLaren on salvation: “I don’t believe making disciples must equal making adherents to the Christian religion. It may be advisable in many (not all!) circumstances to help people become followers of Jesus and remain within their Buddhist, Hindu or Jewish contexts.” (A Generous Orthodoxy, p. 260)

Alan Jones on the atonement: “The Church’s fixation on the death of Jesus as the universal saving act must end . . . [because of] . . . the vindictive God behind it.” (Reimagining Christianity, p. 68.)

Foster, Willard, Peterson, Brueggeman reject the messianic passages in Isaiah, calling them “poetic imagination.” (Renovare Study Bible notes)

Sue Monk Kidd, on goddess worship: “My soul is my own. It is all right for women to follow the wisdom in their souls, to name their truth, to embrace the Sacred Feminine. . . . She is in us.” (www.christianitytoday.com/ct/article_print.html?id=45557)

Endnotes

Among those who promote mysticism (some inadvertently) is a pattern in the sources being quoted. Learn to check the endnotes in popular books. Some key names: Thomas Merton, Teresa of Avila, Desert Fathers, John of the Cross, Richard Foster, Henri Nouwen, Brother Lawrence, Madame Guyon . . .

Dismissive leaders in the local church

The response to your concerns/research: “Well, I haven’t heard about this, so you must be wrong.” Or “That’s a brilliant scholar you’re criticizing!”

Eastern wellness techniques

Yoga (union with the divine), reiki (spirit energy), and mindfulness are brought into our culture from paganism, often somewhat sanitized and/or billed as non-religious. Compare manifestations of kundalini (coiled) yoga and the Toronto Blessing/IHOP movement. Catholic writer Philip St. Romain equates kundalini serpent power to the power of the Holy Spirit.

Contemplative prayer

An integral part of “spiritual formation” disciplines, contemplative prayer (aka centering prayer, abiding prayer, breath prayer, prayer of the heart, Jesus prayer) is described by Richard Foster as: wordless (no content), not for the novice (exclusive), unmediated, and dangerous. Thomas Merton gives the dangers: you could lose your faith, contact a demon, be led into false belief by your own imagination, feel a dread sense that God has abandoned you, or have a mental breakdown. No Scripture prescribes the following ritual to achieve union with the divine: sit quietly, use measured breathing, repeat a phrase over and over for 20 minutes until your mind is empty. Is this altered mental state really the one way to achieve union with God, as mystics claim? . . . Aren’t Christians already covered with the blood of Jesus and indwelled with the Holy Spirit?

One Christian blogger expressed what thousands of proclaiming Christians are coming to believe about meditation: “The ridiculous theological squabblings between adherents of different faiths disappear when the thoughts that produce all that dissension are stilled. Call it centering prayer; call it mantra meditation. The practice is the same, and it brings mystics together under the sheltering tent of wordless reality.”

Interspirituality/Interfaith dialogue

Do these terms mean “doing benevolent work with people of other faiths” or “blending religions”? We’re hearing about Chrislam, Christian Zen, Buddhist Catholics, and demon-invoking ceremonies in churches. Also adopted from paganism and moving into the church are labyrinths, rosaries, monks and monasteries, enforced celibacy, extreme asceticism, visualization, consulting the dead, channeling, and goddess worship.

Missing out on something?

You may begin to question your own faith. Others are having spiritual experiences—seeing lights or spiritual beings, visualizing Jesus for a personal message, feeling an ecstatic unity with all mankind and the universe—all of which can subtly begin to take precedence over the authority of God’s Word and the Lord Jesus.

Naïve acceptance

Perhaps you haven’t felt the need to question Christian study materials until recently. But how are destructive heresies secretly introduced? Why are doctrines of demons (1 Timothy 4:1-3) associated with asceticism, and how is the church exposed to them? How could demonic doctrines be so clever that the elect [the whosoevers] could be deceived?

Who is “the Christ-thing which has no name”? Would God refer to his Son in that way? What are the implications of “eroticism in worship”? When confronted with several wrongly translated texts in The Message Bible, someone from the publisher dismissed the problem by asking, “Does anyone really know what any of the Bible really means anyway?”

Conclusion

Ironically, a couple of insightful Western Buddhists seem to see the problem better than we do, probably because they understand pagan doctrine. From a Buddhist’s review (2008) of Rob Bell’s popular book: “Velvet Elvis contains enough inconsistencies of logic and violations of orthodox Christian theology to raise the hairs on the back of any well-read and deep-thinking Christian’s neck.” And from a Buddhist blogger to his student on how to convert Christians to Buddhism: “If this information [Merton’s teachings, for example] could be taught in the Seminaries it might start to impact the various preachers 10 or 20 years down the road. This is the angle I’m working. If the preachers are inwardly ‘Buddhists’ in their hearts, then you don’t need to beat your head against the wall dealing with ignorant congregants.”

Take heed that no one deceives you.


This article is from Lynn Lusby Pratt’s blog. Used with permission. Click here to see the source page and also if you want to download the above article and an expanded version of it. Lynn is the author of two Lighthouse Trails booklets.


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The Rapture, Christ and The Antichrist…

Anti is a Greek prefix that not only means “opposed to” but “in the place of.” Antichrist will indeed oppose Christ but in the most diabolically clever way possible: by pretending to be Christ. For the world to follow and worship him, a false Christianity must become the world religion—a “Christianity” that all religions can […]

For by grace are ye saved…..

The simplicity of the Gospel. People and false teachers have complicated what God made so easy a child could understand. When you finally understand Gods grace and that understanding goes from your head to your heart, His yoke is easy and His burden is light. Unknowingly I was carrying a burden of a type of […]

Coronavirus Chaos…

Christians wake up from your slumber. The coronavirus is real yet it’s also a distraction. It’s not about politics. It never has been. Satan is working overtime and the chaos amongst Christians is a result of spiritual cavities caused by a diet of a ‘sugary bible’ fake churches. We can expect (and shouldn’t be surprised) […]

The tumbling of TULIP: Calvinism and Reformed Theology

“Today, a growing number of churches, ministries, and Christian colleges are promoting Calvinism. While Calvinist scholars claim that Calvinism is complex (and they have indeed created a complex system), the rudiments of it are very basic, and it can be readily understood. To call something heresy is clearly a strong accusation and should never be […]

I can do all things…..

Context is everything. One word taken out of context changes the ENTIRE meaning of something. Just think- when texting back and forth you use a word misplaced and the receiver now has an entirely different understanding of what you meant. This verse in scripture is used only in part and not in context: the partial […]

Can you be a “Christian Freemason?”

In the last year I have come across a growing number of people bearing the name Christian and at the same time accepting active freemasonry within the same breath. My hope with this blog is to provide the reader with intelligent, organized, and biblical information in order to measure the teachings of freemasonry against the […]

His number is six hundred threescore and six…

Revelation 13 And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet […]

What Does it Mean To Be Justified by God?

Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: and by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses. (Acts 13:38-39) Justification! It is a big word, and very often […]

Waiting for little girl to rise from the dead.

Ever since Sunday (12/15/19), there’s been this bizarre — no other word for it — story out of Bethel Church in Redding, Calif., about the followers of this immense church trying to raise a 2-year-old from the dead. Bethel has been an anomaly in the charismatic/pentecostal world but at the same time a place I’ve been […]

The Meeting Intended to Unify All Religions.

See Biblical Christianity here. “Pope Francis received the Grand Imam Ahmed Al-Tayeb of Al-Azhar of Egypt at the Vatican on Friday (15 November 2019, 17:21). The meeting was intended as the next step in actualizing the Document on the Human Brotherhood for World Peace and Common Living Together, a joint statement signed by the Pope […]

Hebrew roots movement…biblical Christianity or modern day Judaizers?

“The premise of the Hebrew Roots movement is the belief that the Church has veered far from the true teachings and Hebrew concepts of the Bible. The movement maintains that Christianity has been indoctrinated with the culture and beliefs of Greek and Roman philosophy and that ultimately biblical Christianity, taught in churches today, has been […]

The gospel of accommodation……….

The gospel of accommodation is to change, appease, pacify the masses with a message that sounds close enough to the truth perhaps close enough to get into heaven. Why do we do this? Because the true message of the cross confronts us convicts us and demands an answer…. “Choose this day whom you will serve.” […]

What must I do to be saved?

Today is the Day for Salvation, tomorrow is not guaranteed, do not let your hearts be hardened. Paul declares that “the gospel of Christ…is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes” (Rom:1:16) For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one […]

Saved in a cult and being a spiritual whistle-blower.

Before I jump into a heavy topic like spiritual abuse I want to be sure to clarify that these blogs are written with the hope that things mentioned (much of which is personal experience not just a random railing against people) would cause people to draw closer to Christ and for people who are not […]

Tongues of angels…private prayer language…what!

Search the scriptures daily to see if what you’ve been told is true. Spiritual Gifts are given by God through the Holy Spirit. A person cannot help another “activate” a gift that is only given by God. If it is a true gift from God that gift (s) will be exercised decently, in order, and […]

Hath God said….? Exploring the Word of Faith Movement.

Things satan has said and continues to say: “Has God indeed said…” Genesis 3:1 “You will be like God…” Genesis 3:5 “I will make myself like the Most High.” Isaiah 14:14 The above are just a few scriptures of what satan has said from the beginning. After all, if you can be a god, and […]

The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) is a spiritual Ebola virus.

In Deuteronomy 18:10-11 we read: There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. We can read similar warnings […]

There is no fear of the Lord…..

Here are some facts about crucifixion. The person would support his weight by pushing up from the legs while simultaneously pulling up from the wrists. As the leg muscles would tire, he would have to allow his body to hang limp while struggling to breathe. This process continued until the leg muscles gave out, forcing […]

Once indoctrinated ….. but now free.

Religious indoctrination, the original sense of indoctrination, refers to a process of imparting doctrine in an authoritative way, as in catechism.  I am certain my parents were doing what they thought was best, doing what their parents taught them, and what their parents, parents taught them and so on and so on, handing down a set of cultural and […]

The Shack is theology wrapped in a story.

I personally know many ‘pastors’ and ‘leaders’ who have embraced this book (movie) The Shack and actually continue to promote it to their congregations. I hope this authors newer work will open peoples eyes who have been seduced by The Shack and it’s universalist author Paul Young. Especially the leaders who should be protecting the […]

Waiting for little girl to rise from the dead.

Waiting for little girl to rise from the dead.

Ever since Sunday (12/15/19), there’s been this bizarre — no other word for it — story out of Bethel Church in Redding, Calif., about the followers of this immense church trying to raise a 2-year-old from the dead.

Bethel has been an anomaly in the charismatic/pentecostal world but at the same time a place I’ve been telling reporters they need to get to know. As the days have progressed, I’ve been amazed to see all sorts of media, from the New York Post, USA Today and the Sacramento Bee to Slate and then the Associated Press jumping on this story.

Read entire article here.

No where will you find this outlined in the Bible except for clear pagan condemned practices. Read the prophets of Baal, ( 1 Kings 18) and this is exactly what this is – it’s Baal worship. I should also add- I believe the little girl is still at the coroner’s office remains unburied after 5 plus days because everyone is “waiting for God to move.” And why are they asking for $100,000 for ‘medical expenses’ … the girl is dead and if they are trusting God to raise her from the dead, why can’t they trust Him for their need for money?

Many news sources have already reported on this story. But I want to point out what has been missed. In their coverage of the fiasco, reporters have noted that the parents’ church, Bethel Church, has rallied around the parents’ prayers for a resurrection — calling for people across the globe to join them in those prayers. But what Bethel Church has been engaged in, since Olive Heiligenthal died on Saturday, is not prayer. They’ve actually been making “declarations.” There’s a big difference.

Read entire article here

You will NEVER hear about Jesus Christ in this movement – you will never hear the Gospel—you will never hear the word repentance —you will never hear about how our sin separates us from GOD, people cannot be saved unless they hear the Gospel. It’s self centered humanistic all about me and what I can get. This is not biblical Christianity the NAR (New Apostolic Reformation) is a cult.

More resources on Bethel Church (s) and the NAR unbiblical antics here, here, and here.

But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name.”

What is the Gospel? by Harry A. Ironside

The Meeting Intended to Unify All Religions.

The Meeting Intended to Unify All Religions.

See Biblical Christianity here.

“Pope Francis received the Grand Imam Ahmed Al-Tayeb of Al-Azhar of Egypt at the Vatican on Friday (15 November 2019, 17:21). The meeting was intended as the next step in actualizing the Document on the Human Brotherhood for World Peace and Common Living Together, a joint statement signed by the Pope and the Imam in February in Abu Dhabi intended to promote a culture of mutual respect.

The meeting at the Vatican comes at a time when traditional values in the Catholic Church are changing. Pope Francis has taken on a policy in which homosexuals are welcomed into the church so much so that the American LGBT magazine The Advocate named Pope Francis their Person of the Year for 2013. In 2019, Pope Francis stated that homosexual “tendencies are not a sin. If you have a tendency to anger, it’s not a sin. Some Catholic Churches are taking this agenda even further. Catholic dioceses in the United Kingdom are reportedly hosting homosexual Masses designed to welcome homosexuals into the church and combine “gay pride” with the Eucharist and other Romish sacraments. According to reports, these pro-homosexuality events have received blessings from the local Roman Catholic bishops. It should be noted that these events welcome homosexuals into the Catholic Church while not advocating celibacy.

Pope Francis has come under fire before for connecting the Catholic Church with the children of Ishmael. In 2015, 71 elders of the Sanhedrin tried the Pope in absentia for recognizing a “State of Palestine” with an official treaty. By doing so, the Sanhedrin claimed, the Pope was denying the covenant as described in the Bible in which God gives the land of Israel to the descendants of Jacob.” ~ Breaking News Israel

What is the one-world religion described in Revelation? What will be the one-world religion of the end times?

Revelation 17 speaks of a “great prostitute” (or “great harlot”) that is generally understood as a metaphor for a false religion that will exist during the tribulation period. Many have debated the identity of this religion, with some arguing the Roman Catholic Church, Islam, or another large religious movement will be the end-times, one-world religion.

This false end-times religion will include sexual immorality (Revelation 17:2). It will also likely have its headquarters in Rome, often described even in New Testament times as Babylon (Revelation 17:5; 1 Peter 5:13). It will be opposed to Christians, as well as reject the Jews since the Antichrist will defile the temple as the abomination of desolation (Matthew 24:15). Ultimately, the deception during this time will be so great that Jesus taught, “For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect” (Matthew 24:24).

The New Age Road to a U.S. “Department of Peace”

  • The Rapture, Christ and The Antichrist…

    March 29, 2020 by

    Anti is a Greek prefix that not only means “opposed to” but “in the place of.” Antichrist will indeed oppose Christ but in the most diabolically clever way possible: by pretending to be Christ. For the world to follow and worship him, a false Christianity must become the world religion—a “Christianity” that all religions can… Read more

  • For by grace are ye saved…..

    March 24, 2020 by

    The simplicity of the Gospel. People and false teachers have complicated what God made so easy a child could understand. When you finally understand Gods grace and that understanding goes from your head to your heart, His yoke is easy and His burden is light. Unknowingly I was carrying a burden of a type of… Read more

  • Coronavirus Chaos…

    March 20, 2020 by

    Christians wake up from your slumber. The coronavirus is real yet it’s also a distraction. It’s not about politics. It never has been. Satan is working overtime and the chaos amongst Christians is a result of spiritual cavities caused by a diet of a ‘sugary bible’ fake churches. We can expect (and shouldn’t be surprised)… Read more

  • The tumbling of TULIP: Calvinism and Reformed Theology

    March 14, 2020 by

    “Today, a growing number of churches, ministries, and Christian colleges are promoting Calvinism. While Calvinist scholars claim that Calvinism is complex (and they have indeed created a complex system), the rudiments of it are very basic, and it can be readily understood. To call something heresy is clearly a strong accusation and should never be… Read more

  • I can do all things…..

    February 29, 2020 by

    Context is everything. One word taken out of context changes the ENTIRE meaning of something. Just think- when texting back and forth you use a word misplaced and the receiver now has an entirely different understanding of what you meant. This verse in scripture is used only in part and not in context: the partial… Read more

  • Can you be a “Christian Freemason?”

    February 20, 2020 by

    In the last year I have come across a growing number of people bearing the name Christian and at the same time accepting active freemasonry within the same breath. My hope with this blog is to provide the reader with intelligent, organized, and biblical information in order to measure the teachings of freemasonry against the… Read more

View all posts

Tongues of angels…private prayer language…what!

Tongues of angels…private prayer language…what!

Search the scriptures daily to see if what you’ve been told is true.

Spiritual Gifts are given by God through the Holy Spirit. A person cannot help another “activate” a gift that is only given by God. If it is a true gift from God that gift (s) will be exercised decently, in order, and supernaturally as seen in the Scripture without human intervention, persuasion, or coaxing. You will not be able to find scripture where we are told the Apostles had “gift activation” classes as if The Holy Spirit is part of the curriculum at a “Harry Potter” school. You won’t read such a thing in scripture because that is not how the gifts operated then and God is the same yesterday, today and forever.

The Holy Spirit is not “a silly blue genie” as Bethel Church/Music worship leader Jenn Johnson irreverently described Him.

I want to pause for a moment…did you hear that @ 37 seconds in? “That’s who He is to me!” Not only is she speaking about the Spirit of the Lord irreverently, she has fashioned a god after her own making, not who God is as He has manifested Himself in His Word, rather who we like Him to be “to us.”

Some history of Corinth would be beneficial to discuss because the heavy pagan /polytheistic/gnostic culture influenced the Corinthians that Paul taught and had to write to in order to reteach them. Paul states:” But I, brethren, could not address you as spiritual men, but as men of the flesh, as babes in Christ. I fed you with milk, not solid food; for you were not ready for it; and even yet you are not ready, for you are still of the flesh. For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh, and behaving like ordinary men? For when one says, “I belong to Paul,” and another, “I belong to Apollos,” are you not merely men? “(1 Corinthians 3:1-4) Paul addressed the Corinthians out of order behavior regarding the misuse of the gifts and being surrounded (and participating with) by paganism and he clarifies about speaking in tongues and mentions tongues of angels.

Many interpret tongues of angels as “a private prayer language” each believer has and then others view it as a hyperbolic statement much like when Paul stated if I, or even an angel bring another gospel to you other than the one you’ve received let them be accursed.” Or another hyperbolic statement by Jesus Christ when He said if your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out.” Paul appears to be contrasting and his emphasis is on the greatest of all, which is to pursue agape. Paul is not stating he does speak in tongues of angels, nor is he implying there is or is not an angelic language. Paul is saying “if I did speak in tongues of angels.”

A cursory look at scripture and when angels appeared to people we read they always spoke in intelligible languages to the people they appeared too. We do not read there were any linguistic barriers or interpretation needed when angels appeared. To assume such a thing would be a presupposition and exceeding the things which are written which we are told not to do. Reading Pauls correction to the Corinthians he uses conditional language as examples such as “if I pray in a tongue” not when I pray.

Paul states he thanks God he speaks in tongues (intelligible languages, the ability to speak fluently a language the speaker has never learned) more than all of us, and this would make sense, since Paul travelled extensively more so than any other recorded apostle.

Tracking only some of Pauls extensive geographic travels biblically:

  • Antioch (Acts 13:4)
  • Seleucia to Cyprus, to Salamis and Paphos (Acts 13:4-6)
  • Iconium, (Acts 14:3) Lystra
  • Paul and Barnabas went throughout Pisidia, Pamphylia, then to Perga, Attalia (Acts 14:24-26)
  • Paul takes Silas through Syria and Cilicia (now southeastern Turkey)
  • Then in Philippi, (Acts 16:14-34).
  • After teaching some in Berea, Paul departed ahead of Silas and Timothy, southward into Achaia (now southern Greece), to Athens.
  • Paul then makes his first visit to Corinth where he stays a year and a half (Acts 18:1, 5, 11). Paul left by boat with Aquila and Priscilla to Cenchrea and then across the Aegean Sea to Ephesus. Aquila and Priscilla stay there where they would later meet Apollos (Acts 18:19 and 26).
  • Paul sails on to Caesarea and then goes up to Antioch in Syria, Paul stayed a while (Acts 18:23).
  • Then off to Galatia (central region of Turkey) and then Phrygia (Acts 18:23).
  • Then Paul arrives at Ephesus (Acts 20:31) and he preached in the synagogue for 3 months (Acts 19:8). He disputed daily in the school of Tyrannus for 2 years (Acts 19:9-10), so that all that dwelt in Asia heard the word.
  • Paul had come to Troas and continued to Macedonia (2 Corinthians 2:12-13 and 7:5)
  • Then Paul went to Assos, Mitylene, Chios, Samos, Trogylium, and Miletus (now in southwestern Turkey). From here, Paul addresses Ephesian elders whom he had called to meet him (Acts 20:17-38)
  • Sailing to Coos, Rhodes, Patara, and passing on the south side of Cyprus, they came to Tyre (which is now in Lebanon) where they stayed one week. Then they went south to Ptolemais and to Caesarea where they stayed many days (Acts 21:10).
  • Paul is at Caesarea, “many years” (Acts 24:10) Paul then spends 2 years in prison in Caesarea in Judea.
  • Paul, still a prisoner, sails to Sidon with Luke and Aristarchus (Acts 27:1-2) on the way to Italy.
  • Sailed to Myra (now southern Turkey) and on to Lasea, on large island of Crete, 50 miles southeast of Greece, where much time was spent (Acts 27:7-13).

We need to read the scripture setting aside our indoctrinated beliefs, rituals, traditions, and experiences and read the scriptures as they are written plainly. The scripture read from 1 Corinthians 12-14 just does not support “two types” of the gift of tongues (i.e.) The Gift of Tongues and then a “second type” a sort of “private prayer language” or angelic tongues, often called a “heavenly language” and used interchangeably to mean that “every believer has” even though scripture is clear “not all have the gift of tongues.”

If we take the position that all have a “private prayer language” or as some will even hold (erroneously that if you don’t speak in tongues then you have “not received the baptism of the Holy Spirit” or “not saved at all” would be a direct contradiction of Gods Word regarding spiritual gifts. No where in Scripture does it indicate a person must posses a gift as evidence of being saved we know according to scripture that the Holy Spirit sanctifies a believer ongoing throughout their life and a true born again believer will produce fruit, fruit is not equivalent to gifts. We are not saved by “possessing a gift” we are saved by grace through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.

Many proponents of a “private prayer language” will cite only part of Romans 8:26 : …“the Spirit also helps our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself makes intercession for us ….“The rest of that verse is “with groanings which cannot be uttered.” A language (a tongue) must be uttered and words come forth, so this verse is not teaching a private prayer language whereby the person initiates speech, nor is anything (speech) uttered.

Paul concludes his admonition to the Corinthians with the most excellent way (contrasting the competition and pride in Corinth) and what is the most important to pursue which is agape. The problem in Corinth is very much the same today, spiritual pride. Paul was addressing that sin of pride and emphasizing the need for love amongst the brethren, Paul was not emphasizing an angelic tongue. God is not the author of confusion or chaos which was also an issue in Corinth that Paul was addressing. Paul was reestablishing the proper order of the spiritual gifts, calling the Corinthians out of their sinful lifestyle, (to be separate from the paganism around them) they had fallen into and exhorting them to love. These letters Paul wrote were not to make a doctrine of a “private prayer language” or “speaking angelic languages.”

“But now, brethren, if I come to you speaking with tongues, what shall I profit you unless I speak to you either by revelation, by knowledge, by prophesying, or by teaching?”

Primary Scripture Sources:

1 Corinthians 12

1 Corinthians 13

1 Corinthians 14

Below is an example of what the gift of tongues is not.

The Lord is quite clear how not to pray and Jesus Christ Himself gives a very detailed structural way to pray:

“Lord, teach us to pray just as John also taught his disciples.” And He said to them, “When you pray, say:

“Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us day by day our daily bread.
And forgive us our sins,
For we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”

If God intended for us to speak to Him in unknown tongues, angelic tongues, or “secret code” private prayer languages I have to wonder why God is then so specific on how not to pray and on how we ought to pray. Much scripture is written that calls us to be actively engaged in mind, speech, actions, etc. when speaking, praying, interacting with God and to have our minds be unfruitful just lends itself to much of what we are seeing in contemplative prayer and lectio divina.

Misuse/abuse and in some cases outright unbiblical use of the gifts are most often seen in these areas within Christendom: The Word of Faith Movement and The New Apostolic Reformation.

I wanted to write about this issue because I know people who have been made to feel less than and worse over this issue. So Pauls letter (s) to the Corinthians is alive and active today! Many people today hold this practice of speaking in tongues and elevating it to some sort of sign of maturity or spirituality. And if a person doesn’t have a “private prayer language” then something “is wrong with their relationship with Christ” or they are looked at as “less spiritual” and this sort of childish behavior is exactly what Paul was addressing with the Corinthians. Paul chided the Corinthians for their carnality.

Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Hath God said….? Exploring the Word of Faith Movement.

Hath God said….? Exploring the Word of Faith Movement.

Things satan has said and continues to say:

“Has God indeed said…” Genesis 3:1

“You will be like God…” Genesis 3:5

“I will make myself like the Most High.” Isaiah 14:14

The above are just a few scriptures of what satan has said from the beginning. After all, if you can be a god, and even be as God, then there is no need for God. These scriptures and those (word of faith, WOF, word faith, positive confession, seed faith, prosperity teachers ) who teach such a thing, are their own gods. And as scripture says, frighteningly so, truly they have their reward already.

Anyone with access to the world wide web can simply google some of the terms above and a variety of mostly outlandish and almost unbelievable things will flood your search engine. However it can be easy to look from the outside at the most blasphemous claims (and behaviors) made by people in this movement and think what in the world are these people thinking? Then, there are the folks on the outskirts who essentially are passing by and unknowingly get “swept up” into some of the less outlandish and more subtle versions of what this blog will highlight.

I have learned that words matter and defining terms is essential. I will provide a real life example of how important this defining of terms is. I recently met an elderly woman, who was well dressed, wearing a plain cross around her neck, and had a old tattered book titled the sermon on the mount in her lap. In my mind, I immediately thought, well praise the Lord, I can chat with this woman about Jesus and surely she will understand what I am talking about! Then very quickly a sense that something was very very wrong came over me. She seemed a certain way, she looked good but something wasn’t right and I was about to find out exactly what that was.

As we engaged in a conversation I began asking her about the book she had. I “knew” not by my own understanding that there was something wrong with that book. She clenched it ever so tightly as if her very life was in that book and said “this is the only thing I have read for 30 years!” She proceeded to exclaim to me “you must have a copy, it will change your life!” In my head I thought, I am sure it will change my life, but not for the better, this book is not from God. The sermon on the mount spoken by Jesus Christ has changed and continues to change my life. However this woman’s book the sermon on the mount was everything that is antichrist but posing itself as Christian using all the same terms yet meaning something entirely different. The book she had that was written in 1934 by New Thought spiritual leader Emmet Fox.

I am mentioning all this to bring this back to the word of faith teachings that are solely based upon new thought, “christian science”, new thought metaphysical movement, gnosticism, with some “peppered” scripture in there as a condiment to “appear” Christian just like this elderly woman I met.

Here are some resources on the occult origins that are the very spring board of the Word of Faith movement:

Phineas Quimby “Father of New Thought” influenced Mary Eddy Baker, who both in turn influenced the “christian” originator of the Word Faith Movement EW Kenyon.

At this point I would hope the reader is already starting to see this has nothing to do with God at all and we haven’t even begun to get into mainstream “christian” word faith teachings that have come from this.

EW Kenyons writings went on to heavily influence Kenneth Hagin Sr. who is the recognized “father” of the Word of Faith Movement also referred to as Neo-Charismatic, prosperity gospel, force of faith, faith healers, positive confession movement. This movement is also heavily intertwined with the New Apostolic Reformation movement previously touched upon here.

A few very short examples of the heretical teachings from the word of faith movement are:

The false teaching that “we are little gods” is central to WOF teaching as well as the NAR movement. It has to be so they can maintain the position of (“I will be like the most high”) the scriptures mentioned in the opening of this blog. The correct biblical exposition of the “little gods teaching” is here.

God “speaks words of faith” with his mouth is basic to Word-Faith doctrine is the idea that God created the world by literally speaking aloud words of faith. Thus, Hagin taught that “God created the world with words, human beings were created to be gods.”

Although Word-Faith teachers affirm that Jesus Christ was and is God, this affirmation is compromised by other elements of their teaching. According to basic word of faith teaching- Jesus was born again in hell and then rose from the dead. The correct biblical view is that Jesus was not “born again” He has always existed. They also argue that healing from disease or illness is assured in the atonement in this current temporal life, missing the true understanding of what Christs atonement entails, not just in this temporal body, but life everlasting. The focus is here and now and self centered, rather than glorifying God. Some teaching on biblical healing can be found here, here, and here.  

I mention biblical healing because there is an overemphasis and idolatry of healing and money (materialism and good health is equated to spirituality) within this movement. If people are not healed of diseases they are left with their faith bankrupt. If they are financially poor it’s because they didn’t give enough money or they “spoke out” (AKA negative confession) against their finances. As is the case within my own family I have witnessed this movement cause serious spiritual damage. There is plenty of public testimony where this movement has even caused death in circumstances because people trenched in this view often refuse medical treatment because “sickness is just an illusion.”

Word of Faith says we should speak words of faith like God does: Since words spoken in faith are inherently powerful (Prov. 18:21 ” Death and life are in the power of the tongue ….” which is used out of context) what we say, if we believe it, is basically what we get. This is a “spiritual law” and God MUST act as we declare and decree a thing so.

John 10:10 “the thief” (comes to kill, steal, and destroy) … is another half verse quoted by WOF and some NAR to once again confirm that since according to their teaching, since it is always Gods will to be healthy, wealthy, etc. then if you’re not –‘satan has stolen your inheritance, or you need to stand firm and take back what the enemy has stolen (AKA money, health)!’ They equate “the thief” in this verse to satan, when (words and the meaning matter) the word “the thief” is referring to false teachers in the context of this whole chapter. The irony of false teachers using this verse once escaped me.

The WOF movement has cashed in on this verse : 3 John 2 “I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.” … This is often used to “confirm” Gods will is always that you have good health, a lot of money, and always happy and prospering. Again words matter and in the context of 3 John 2…it’s a simple salutation. It would be the same if I sent an email to a long lost friend and said, “ It’s been awhile since we spoke, I hope you and your family are well, healthy, and doing ok.” The WOF movement has made an entire doctrine from this misused scripture.

Listed below are just some (not an exhaustive list) notable Word of Faith/Prosperity teachers/speakers today (some still living, some not) and for the most part they all share the same underlying/overlapping aberrant and even heretical belief systems which will also be explored. It is important to list these teachers as many of them are aging and rapidly “passing the torch” to the younger generation. For example- Kenneth Copeland is passing “his torch” or as word of faithers would say “passing the mantle and anointing” to Todd White. Listed below The Word of Faith and NAR (New Apostolic Reformation Movement) are very much overlapped in many ways and at the same time also have some unique characteristics unto themselves.

E.W. Kenyon

Kenneth Hagin

Kenneth Copeland

Gloria Copeland

Jessie Duplantis

Joel Osteen

Victoria Osteen

Joyce Meyer

Beth Moore

Caroline Leaf

Priscilla Shirer

Lisa Bevere

John Bevere

Charles Capps

Steven Furtick

T. D. Jakes (an unrepentant modalist)

Benny Hinn

Paul Cain

Carol Arnott

John Arnott

Robert Tilton

Jerry Falwell

Smith Wigglesworth

William Branham

Oral Roberts

Marylin Hickey

Creflo Dollar

Paula White

Joseph Prince

Johnathan Cahn

Phil Pringle

Rod Parsley

Paul Crouch

So we have covered only some of the elementary basics of the occult, new thought, christian science, and the influences it has had on major “Christian” leaders.

What is often seen in this and all false teaching is a mashing of pieces of scripture (and most often secondary non-canonical sources) and attaching to another not in the way of cross referencing/studying, rather just a “whole new” verse thus a whole new teaching can come from it.

Other central versus from Scripture within the WOF movement that will be explored in coming blogs:

For those who believe …………these signs shall follow….”

Greater works than these……………….” keep in mind Christ IS GOD. He always has been. So the “you are little gods” false teaching is very much tied into this. Christ IS GOD.

By His Stripes we were healed….”- is the mantra in WOF- and there is a reason why the Old Testament Prophet Isaiah is always quoted but the same reference in The New Testament (in Peter and Matthew) scriptures that refer to this passage in Isaiah are not the “go to” scriptures in this movement. Like I said very early in this blog– words and the meaning of words matter.

I was listening to The Berean Call radio and listened to a testimony of a man coming out of the false teaching of the NAR. When he was asked why do people continue to stay in something that they know to be false. He answered it’s largely due to the fact that people just cannot psychologically cope with the reality that they’ve been duped for 20 or 30 plus years.

I watched Pastor Steve Mitchell talk about seminary school and he met a man in seminary and they became acquainted. As I recall Mitchell speaking about this man, he says how he ministered to him for approximately 2 years before the man went off to be a catholic priest. The man agreed with Mitchell on the facts (and accepted 1st century apostolic biblical doctrine as true) that the teachings of Rome is diametrically opposed to biblical Christianity, but the man just could not let go of the belief that he had been given the power of transubstantiation. So it was more important for him to have that power than to have the truth of the Gospel. Power at the expense of Truth really is at the root of all false teachings.

So far people who may be following these teachers may not hold the belief systems mentioned, or like myself, not even aware they did hold to such unbiblical beliefs. A little leaven, leavens the whole lump, and trying to separate what is true from the lies in these teachings is like trying to strain the cream out once its been mixed in your coffee.

In the coming blogs about the Word of Faith movement deeper discussions and biblical content will be explored. Including more scriptures that are plucked out to base an entire doctrine on. I will also provide book excerpts and/or video/audio excerpts whenever possible for the reader to research on their own about the people mentioned.

I hope this has encouraged people to look at Scripture themselves and compare it to what you have heard. Feel free to contact here and also ponder this until next time.

Have a look at these sites if you are reading Jesus Calling, The Shack, The Alpha Course, A Course in Miracles, The Daniel Plan, or The Purpose Driven Life.

The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) is a spiritual Ebola virus.

The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) is a spiritual Ebola virus.

In Deuteronomy 18:10-11 we read: There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. We can read similar warnings and commands in these passages as well, and others such as 2 Kings 17:17, 2 Kings 21:6, 2 Chronicles 33:6.

Suffice it to say the Lord clearly condemns witchcraft, and any form of occultism. So, why would professing Christians practice such things? At the top of the NAR we have major leaders:

Bethel Church (s) unbiblical practices include but are not limited too:

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (2 Tim:4:3).

Approximately sixty thousand people attended The Send stadium event February 23, 2019. According to the organization’s website, it is “A NEW ERA.” We may indeed be entering a new era, but not necessarily one of increased evangelism or missions, which is the purported goal of The Send.

The Send (formerly called “The Call”) features many if not all of the people (and more) above.

Stop here and please just think about what you’ve read and what the Word of God says.

This blog isn’t just impersonal and something I haven’t been through and experienced. I understand the seduction of it all. It’s quite captivating that is for sure, and no wonder, because “Satan disguises himself as an angel of light, his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.” 2 Corinthians 11:14. I post this with love as heartbreaking as it is, I have family deeply involved in this … well.. it’s a cult … as Dr. Walter Martin said “cultism is any major deviation from orthodox Christianity relative to the cardinal doctrines of the Christian faith.” And Bethel Church is a major deviation, not just some “minor peripheral issues” to be winked at and overlooked.

The only thing being “sent at The Send” is a delusion: And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. 2 Thessalonians 2:10 -12

Resources for more information:

This blog isn’t even the tip of the iceberg on this subject. My hope is that first and foremost, if you are in this movement, repent and turn to Christ. And for those who have just breezed through this blog I hope this has given you enough information to measure against the Word of God and if you are truly born again the Holy Spirit would convict you of the Truth.

The Shack is theology wrapped in a story.

THE SHACK
Photo credit The Shack of Lies from Good Fight Ministries

I personally know many ‘pastors’ and ‘leaders’ who have embraced this book (movie) The Shack and actually continue to promote it to their congregations. I hope this authors newer work will open peoples eyes who have been seduced by The Shack and it’s universalist author Paul Young. Especially the leaders who should be protecting the sheep and not leaving the gates of the pastures open to wolves. How beautiful is the truth that even this blasphemy against Christ Himself, Christ says one can still be forgiven and have eternal life in Him…. that is mercy, that is love! (Matthew 12:30-32)

The Shack and its’ deceptive message:

When People Say, “But The Shack is Just a Novel!”

THESHACK

“Shack Author: Now Jesus is Pregnant with Adam Paul Young, author of The Shack, Eve, and The Lies We Believe About God, is pulling many away from the Savior and the Word of God. His Mother Goddess is only one of many theological problems he presents via his books and appearances.] [Following the release of Paul Young book Eve], Don Veinot of Midwest Christian Outreach intervewed James B. DeYoung, the author of Burning Down The Shack and The Lies Paul Young Believes About God. DeYoung was friends with The Shack author Paul Young, and was one of the first to learn that Paul Young had rejected the biblical God. He is a semi-retired seminary professor. The interview segment below is transcribed from the video…It lasts two minutes or so. Here DeYoung speaks of Paul Young’s book, Eve. Please note how Young, once again misinterpreting the meaning of El Shaddai, spews forth a mutated version of Christ. Here is the brief, transcribed portion of the video. Professor James B. DeYoung is speaking, starting at 31 minutes and 32 seconds: 31:32 Eve is Paul Young’s novel dealing with rewriting Genesis chapters one, two, and three, the story of Creation, and then the making of Adam and Eve. And the way that in Paul Young’s view that Adam and Eve came into being is that the Earth Man, who is Jesus Christ becomes pregnant with Adam, and after nine months gives birth to Adam, and then after Adam becomes pregnant with Eve, Adam gives birth to her after nine months… …and both of these infants at that time, immediately after birth, nurse at Jesus’ breasts. That to me is almost shameful for me to say that kind of thing, but I relate that because I think that Paul Young is imbibing at the drink of pagan mythology, myths that were in vogue in the Canaanite…” Read more here: http://ow.ly/KZpy50vaFje

Art Designer of  “The Shack” Book Cover Says He Regrets His Involvement: 

 

“I look back and see how little discernment I had. And I regret and apologize also for waiting this long to publicly share this,” he writes. 

He says the problem is that the book advocated for universal reconciliation or universal salvation, a doctrine that claims that since Jesus died for all, then all are saved, whether they believe it and receive Him personally or not.

Aldrich says this is a grave distortion of John 3:16. 

He goes on to say that John 3:18 makes Jesus’ purpose clear:

He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

THE SHACK.JPGThe Shack Designer regrets involvement