Should Christians Hold Prayer Vigils With Apostates?
December 16, 2012
During the 2012 election, the New Religious Right (NRR) held prayer vigils all throughout the United States. Their rallying cry: “If my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14
There is nothing wrong with Christians gathering together to pray for a common cause. There is nothing wrong with asking God to return our country to biblical principles for the simple reason that those of us who profess Christ believe that there’s something diabolical going on, and our country is in the grip of evil. The way we see it, spiritual forces of wickedness have invaded virtually every aspect of society. And this reality is what drives us to our knees to plead with God to intervene on our behalf. As the election drew close, we appealed to the Creator to spare us from an administration that aims to transform America into a socialist utopia.
Even though large groups of conservatives from many religious systems joined together and prayed their brains out, God did not spare America.
What struck me as odd is that many professing Christians met in large groups to pray with people that reject the God of the Bible even knowing that those from other religious faiths do not pray to the God of Christianity. So the purpose for praying with unbelievers is….?
Now consider this. The Bible teaches that anyone who is not born again is not indwelled by the Holy Spirit. I tackled this subject in “Are you praying to the only true God”:
Scripture speaks of God the Holy Spirit residing within all who believe in the Son of God. The Spirit guides, instructs and empowers believers. (John 14:16-17) As well, the “Spirit of truth” confirms everything about Jesus. (John 15:26) The unregenerate (unsaved) person is not Spirit filled. God does not hear anyone’s prayer unless it is put into words by the Holy Spirit. So if we want our prayers to be heard and answered we must pray to the right God. (Source)
Paul drives home the point in 1 Timothy 2:5:
For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.
As mediator, Jesus Christ stands between God and men to reconcile man to God. According to Scripture, God does not hear the prayers of the unrepentant sinner. “Sin had made a quarrel between us and God; Jesus Christ is the Mediator who makes peace.”
Returning to the election, Albert Mohler believes it was a “catastrophe” and a “disaster” for evangelicals. He said in a New York Times interview:
It’s not that our message—we think abortion is wrong, we think same-sex marriage is wrong—didn’t get out. It did get out. It’s that the entire moral landscape has changed. An increasingly secularized America understands our positions, and has rejected them.
Perhaps the NRR leaders should put their priorities in order and do what the Bible commands. First and foremost followers of Jesus Christ must share the Good News of the Gospel with the lost. (1 Corinthians 15:3-4, Mark 16:15) We may defeat the evils of our day through political means and we may change laws. But unless man’s sinful heart is changed, evil will persist.
We must also oppose the evolutionary secularist worldview. Many pro-family groups have been in the trenches for decades, fighting to “take back America for God.” It has been an up-hill battle — and expensive to boot. But let’s be honest; in spite of all our efforts and the money we’ve poured into winning the culture war, liberals are winning!
After months of pleading with God to oust Obama, we’re now asking, “Why did God allow his re-election?”
In a word: Judgment.
So with that in mind, the question we should be asking ourselves is, “Why is God judging America?”
Again, in a word: Sin.
When I was a child and disobeyed my parents I got a spanking. But before the boom was lowered I’d cry out, “Don’t spank me! I’ll be good, I promise!” All the pleading in the world did not work with my parents. They’d give me a licking because I deserved one.
Well, America is getting a licking because we deserve one. It would seem that God has closed his ears to our pleas and stale promises. We the Peeps have not repented of our sins and turned from our wicked ways. In fact, most Americans could care less what God thinks of their lascivious behavior. So for now, at least, God will allow us to continue wallowing in filth.
I believe one of the reasons God has turned us over to a reprobate mind, to do what should not be done (Rom. 1:28) is that, like the world, the visible Church is awash in sin. A whole host of self-professed Christians are deep in sin simply because they have no clear understanding of what God deems sinful — and they have no desire to find out!
Satan uses syncretism to separate God from His people. Religious syncretism is the blending of differing systems of belief. “Syncretism relies on the whim of man, not the standard of Scripture.” Syncretism in Protestantism occurred when elements of other religious beliefs were integrated into mainstream denominations. So, what’s the big deal?
The big deal is blending historic Christianity with other philosophies! Listen to Deuteronomy 12:29-31:
When the LORD thy God shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise. Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which he hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods.
The LORD was not kidding around.
Syncretism slithered into the Church through liberalism. But well intended evangelical conservatives who make up a large part of pro-family groups are also responsible. In their desperation to “bring America back to God” groups such as the American Family Association, Focus on the Family, the Family Research Council, Americans for Working Families, Wall Builders, Traditional Values Coalition, Liberty Council and Concerned Women for America reached out to a slew of controversial Christians (false teachers), including men and women in theological cults! And they’re routinely invited to participate in spiritual and political endeavors — even prayer rallies!
Over the years religious renegades have shared the platform with GOP candidates, congressmen, entertainers, heads of pro-family groups, and other conservative superstars. Now, I’m not saying that people on stage with renegades share their beliefs; what I’m saying is that when highly regarded leaders unite with heretics and cultists, the public sees it as an endorsement!
“If the New Religious Right were truly committed first and foremost to sound biblical theology and doctrine,” says Brannon Howse, “they would not be involved in spiritual enterprises with those who participate in the New Age Movement, the New Apostolic Reformation, ecumenicalism, globalism, communitarianism, the Church of Rome, the Word of Faith movement, social justice, and the social gospel.”
As Brannon rightly pointed out, the Word of Faith movement is not committed to sound biblical doctrine. What they teach is heretical!
Here CRI exposes word-faith teaching:
God created man in “God’s class,” as “little gods,” with the potential to exercise what they refer to as the “God-kind of faith” in calling things into existence and living in prosperity and success as sovereign beings. Of course, we forfeited this opportunity by rebelling against God in the Garden and taking upon ourselves Satan’s nature. To correct this situation, Jesus Christ became a man, died spiritually (thus taking upon Himself Satan’s nature), went to hell, was “born again,” rose from the dead with God’s nature again, and then sent the Holy Spirit so that the incarnation could be duplicated in believers, thus fulfilling their calling to be what they call “little gods.” Since we’re called to experience this kind of life now, we should be successful in virtually every area of our lives. To be in debt, then, or be sick, or (as is even taught by the faith teachers) to be left by one’s spouse, simply means that you don’t have enough faith — or you have some secret sin in your life, because if you didn’t, you would be able to handle all of these problems.
In every instance, the “Word-Faith” teaching is guilty of presenting an inflated view of man and a deflated view of God, thereby compromising God’s message as revealed in the Bible. This fast-growing movement has disastrous implications and, in fact, reduces Jesus Christ to a means to an end — when in fact he is the end. If the New Age Movement is the greatest threat to the church from without, “positive confession” may well be its greatest threat from within. (Online source)
Another movement mentioned by Brannon Howse is the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR). The NAR, aka dominionists, hold that God is restoring the lost offices of church governance, namely the offices of Prophet and Apostle. The leaders fancy themselves modern-day apostles and prophets and believe they have the same gifts as the Old Testament prophets and the New Testament apostles. In a piece I wrote entitled “Dominionists are on the move…and they mean business” I brought to light some of their unbiblical beliefs:
The NAR/dominionist’s goal is to transform society into the kingdom of God on earth. How? By controlling various aspects of society. The term they use is the “Seven Mountains,” or “Seven Spheres” of society. The Seven Mountains are: 1) Arts and Entertainment; 2) Business/Economy; 3) Education; 4) Family; 5) Government; 6) Media; 7) Religion. The NAR holds that as they accomplish ridding the world of evil, things will get better and better and then Jesus Christ will return to set up His kingdom.
The goals of the CR [Christian Right] and the NAR seem like a good idea, right? I mean, who could argue with wanting to influence the seven spheres of society that are dominated by secular humanists. Christians are not wrong in desiring to have a society based on Judeo-Christian principles. But here’s the problem. This “mandate” the NAR mob subscribes to did not come from the Lord Jesus Christ. In John 18:36 Jesus made it clear: “My kingdom is not of this world.”
However, dominionists never let a little thing like what Jesus said get in the way of their lofty goals. One of the most troubling aspects of their “theology” is the unbiblical teaching on spiritual warfare. They believe they have a kingdom mandate to do “strategic-level spiritual warfare” which is “a popular charismatic method of casting out demons from geographical locations or territories. It identifies three levels of demonic control on earth. Firstly, are “Ground-Level” demons, which possess people. Secondly, “Occult-Level” demons empower witches, shamans, magicians. Finally, “Strategic-Level” demons which are the most powerful of the three, are said to rule over certain regions or territories. Their main purpose is to hinder people from coming to Christ.”
Hence, dominionists go hither and yon to do strategic-level spiritual warfare to tear down demonic strongholds established by Satan and his demons. This is not local; it’s global. (Source)
The fact of the matter is that the word-faith/positive confession movement and the NAR have many of the same heretical beliefs. In Matthew 7:15-17, Jesus warned:
Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. You shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree brings forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree brings forth evil fruit. … Therefore by their fruits you shall know them.
In Ephesians 5:11 Paul tells us to “have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.” We are not only to expose them, we are to call them what they are – evil! We have many examples in the Bible of name calling. For example, in Matthew 23 Jesus called the scribes and Pharisees hypocrites and “whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones.” He called these same men serpents and a brood of vipers, looked them squarely in the face and said, “how are you to escape being sentenced to hell?”
But instead of exposing unfruitful works of darkness as we are commanded to do, New Religious Right leaders, many of whom profess Christ, organize prayer events with them!
So – did God hear those prayers? Consider who He hears according to Scripture and draw your own conclusion.
New Apostolic Reformation articles—On Solid Rock Resources
Televangelists & Word of Faith Movement—On Solid Rock Resources
Are you praying to the only true God? By Marsha West
Liberals created the culture of evil and death, part 2 By Marsha West
How the Religious Right Assisted in the Re-Election of President Obama And Are Hastening God’s Judgment of America By Brannon Howse
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