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Should Christians Hold Prayer Vigils With Apostates?

December 16, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

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.

Further…

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.

Resources:

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


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

Obama Calling: America’s Life after Death

November 8, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

I have never been so unhappy to be right. I’ve long said that Barack Obama would win re-election, and two weeks ago I stated as much in print. In making this prediction, I was almost alone among traditionalist pundits, with some, such as Dick Morris (Mr. Batting Zero), actually forecasting a Mitt Romney landslide. And, no, I’m not pointing this out to numb despair with some perverse kind of gloating, like a man consumed in flames looking to suck on an ice cube. It’s because of why I knew that Romney would lose:America is lost. And there is something to be found, but not unless good people understand what truly lies ahead.

America is heading toward a dark winter. Of course, I can’t give you a Mayan-like prediction of a precise time of reckoning; details are always sketchy, which is why I wasn’t entirely right on the micro of the election. But this is much like how it’s difficult to predict the weather for two Wednesdays from now, but easy to forecast cold in February. And of our civilization’s overall weather pattern, there is no doubt. Now let’s discuss what prevents conservatives from seeing the clouds on the horizon.

Rationalization

Many conservatives probably knew better in their hearts than to predict a Romney win, but just couldn’t come to terms with the depressing reality of a second Obama term. Rationalization is common among man; it’s how we avoid unwelcome truths. But it also blinds us to danger. Just think, for instance, of Jews who saw their coming winter in 1930s Germany and emigrated; then think of those who didn’t because they couldn’t face reality. This is how dangerous rationalization can be.

Likewise, for years I and a few others have been warning that fighting in the political arena while losing the culture is like trying to grow beautiful leaves on a tree whose roots are beset by steady rot. Sure, we may win some battles, but they’re merely a rightward movement of deck chairs on a ship steadily drifting left. Yet even when this phenomenon’s specifics are explained to simplicity, they’re often rationalized away by conservatives. Most would rather talk about Obama this and Romney that, about how we just, by gum, need a real conservative. But this is for naught without a real conservative electorate. We can’t elect a better government when we’ve bred a worse people.

And just as I knew Obama would win last night, I’m quite sure of something else.

No truly “conservative” Republican will ever win nationally again.

Ever.

(Don’t click that mouse and grab the hemlock, because there is hope. I’ll get to that later.)

To understand a major reason why, read my piece, “Does the GOP’s Demographic Death Spiral End in a Texas Graveyard?” And to understand why I put “conservative” in quotation marks, click “Conservatism is Dead; Long Live Conservatism.” I’ll give many such recommendations in this piece, as they’re necessary background for a proper understanding of our coming dark days.

But let’s start with a simple fact: Mitt Romney is a photogenic, articulate, moderate Republican who was up against a scandal-ridden leftist radical presiding over a listing economy and foundering foreign policy. Still he couldn’t win.

Or, I should say, voters chose to lose.

Because what the American people were before, they are no more.

I know, I know. The media deceived the citizenry. Romney started playing not to lose instead of to win. There was vote fraud. There was that storm and Chris Christie playing Misty for Mr. Limp Wristy.

Rationalization.

Oh, it’s not that the above isn’t true. But no candidate is tactically perfect; Obama certainly made his share of mistakes. There also will inevitably be unforeseen events during any campaign, and they don’t matter when enough people can distinguish good from evil. And the left does steal hearts and minds through the media and votes through electoral sleight-of-hand, but this merely reflects our cultural decay. And it’s only getting worse.

If You Can’t Get Elected, Appoint a New People

This variation on a Bertolt Brecht line gets at our problem. And our new people has been forged via both importation and domestic production.

While conservatives complain about illegal migration — ever more tepidly — I’ve been warning that it was merely an exacerbation of a larger problem: legal immigration, through which statists have been importing reliably socialist voters. This I have explained thoroughly over and over and over and over and over and over again, yet most conservatives won’t touch the issue. This is partially due to “immigrationism,” dogma stating that immigration must be a permanent and unquestioned fixture of American life (death?); partially due to pundit cowardice; and partially due to rationalization. After all, immigration is here to stay, we think, so better to shunt its scary implications to the mind’s recesses, where the rest of the wild things are.

But I’ll make this simple: remember the pre-election stories about how Obama was wildly popular overseas? The English are enchanted, the French are all aflutter,Indonesia is infatuated, and Kenya is kvelling. Obama isn’t foreign to foreigners, and do you think this will change because the foreigners come here? Just as with religion, people bring their ideology with them. And unless you think you could talk a Muslim jihadist out of Islam, why suppose you could talk a socialist out of socialism?

The world’s consensus political orientation is no surprise, mind you. Note that nascent, adolescent, and young adult America was the rarest of anomalies, as man’s historical default is tyranny. And as geriatric America has proven, it’s difficult enough instilling the mindset that birthed her into the native born, never mind those who come here in the hardened clay of adulthood. Having said this, there is a reason why we are being, as Alan Keyes put it, “colonized….”

“Israel hath cast off the thing that is good; the enemy shall pursue him. They have reigned, but not by me: they have been princes, and I knew not….” — Hosea 8:3-4

As a people’s morality goes, so go its fortunes. You simply cannot be one kind of people but have another kind of government (see “Written in the Eternal Constitution”). And what has happened to our sense of virtue in America? So lost it is that even the word has been replaced with “values,” that fixture of the atheistic literary style. For decades we have instilled children with leftism, nihilism, hedonism, relativism, and atheism through academia, the media, and popular culture; we have seduced them into sin and made them, as Ben Franklin wrote, “more corrupt and vicious, [so] they have more need of masters.” For sure, masters will be one’s lot if he has not mastered himself.

And this inner anarchy has outward manifestations: the imagery of pagan barbarism. Like primitive tribesmen, the young today deface themselves with tattoos and body piercings; the tramp stamp has become a stamp of youth-generation membership, while even large earlobe rings, something the West previously reserved to Discovery Channel documentaries, are now worn. And this physiognomy correlates with a certain voting pattern. Do you know what it is?

Speaking of voting patterns, for my atheist friends…

“It is when a people forget God that tyrants forge their chains” — Patrick Henry

Like many reading this, I once was that rare breed: a conservative agnostic. And, like so many who bristle when I now promote faith, I probably didn’t realize how rare I was — and always would be.

Fox News alluded to this when trying to explain Obama’s win last evening, pointing out that religiously unaffiliated people are 20 percent of the U.S.for the first time ever. And does a poll showing that this burgeoning group of Americans favors Obama surprise you? It shouldn’t. There is a strong atheism-statism correlation the world over, which is why it’s no coincidence that “conservatives” in heavily secular Western Europe are simpatico with our liberals. Take note of this before you cheer the diminution of faith and fancy it can be replaced with Ayn Randism. Without the Christian right, there is no right at all.

So where do we go from here? First, we must stop rationalizing and look truth in the eye. There are no national ballot-box solutions, and America’s winter is nigh. And will we, as all civilizations eventually do, soon go the way of ancient Rome? It’s possible. Remember, however, that when Rome fell there were still people living in her lost lands. They still had to forge societies. And some did a better job than others.

And what of the immediate future? Well, I’ll write more about that in the coming months. For now I’ll leave it at this: what would you do if you were part of an organization whose leadership became ever more tyrannical and intransigent?

We must focus on our states and localities, on uncompromisingly doing the right thing within them. Are you with me? Because all I can say is that if I were a governor, I would certainly make news. What else can you do when caught in the course of human events?


Selwyn Duke is a writer, columnist and public speaker whose work has been published widely online and in print, on both the local and national levels. He has been featured on the Rush Limbaugh Show and has been a regular guest on the award-winning Michael Savage Show. His work has appeared in Pat Buchanan’s magazine
The American Conservative and he writes regularly for The New American and Christian Music Perspective.

He can be reached at: SelwynDuke@optonline.net

Selwyn Duke is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

Questions And Answers

September 30, 2012 by · 1 Comment 

Both Must Be Right…

“A bad question deserves no answer because it raises false issues and requires incriminating answers.”  Dr. R. J. Rushdoony  “A Word in Season” Vol. III, Pg. 35

Our society is saturated with bad questions.  The media delights in publically tripping up guests. Lawyers spend countless hours devising questions that will incriminate a suspect.  Police seek confessions with hours of exhausting inquiries.  Water boarders and other torturers seek to illicit information through fear.  The disgusting Brad Pitt movie “Inglorious Basterds” glorifies this evil practice.

Katie Couric’s interview with Sarah Palin before the 2008 presidential election was a prime example of questioning with intent to create embarrassment.  Couric’s belittling and embarrassing inquiries succeeded in making Palin a laughing stock and garnering commendations for herself.  Being a successful governor of Alaska and publically fencing with experienced media street fighters are entirely different arenas.  I am not defending Palin who was stupid to allow the interview but I am indicting Couric whose bullying spirit is pervasive throughout the wicked United States media.

Larry King’s CNN program was popular; Piers Morgan has now filled the spot.  There are more guests but the format is similar and the media agenda remains firmly in place.  Homosexuality is promoted with vigor and every effort is made to make guests who oppose it look ignorant and intolerant.  Morgan is a bit more abrasive than King but both defy Biblical principles and scorn those who don’t.  Absolutes are quickly challenged and peppered with confrontational questions.

If a bad question is not worthy of an answer a good question should produce a proper answer.  This is an election year in the United States of America.  It is the year when the people are responsible for voting for a leader who under the mandates of the Constitution will seek the best interests of the Republic.

A majority of our voters know very little about the inner workings of our government.  They go to the polls and cast a vote for their favorite candidate and leave with the feeling they have discharged their responsibility.  They know there is a depression but they are not sure what caused it or who is responsible.  They don’t want to be bothered with worry about evils they cannot control.  They seek to be obedient to the laws of the land though they don’t actually know what those laws are.  They are patriotic and tend to support the nation right or wrong.  They stick to a particular political party the way sports fans stick to their favorite teams.  They go to church on Sunday but are not familiar with God’s legal system and are skeptical of large portions of the Bible.  They think themselves righteous and might notify the authorities about anyone who is too critical of the nation.  There is little resemblance between them and the Savior Whose Name they often claim.  They are enemies of truth and justice and useless in preserving freedom.

Righteousness cannot be realized by voting for the lesser of two evils.  Christians who engage in this practice must repent of their sinful action.  When there is no righteous candidate, voting for a heretic is an offense against God.  Evil does not produce righteousness.  God is not pragmatic!  We are to avoid evil and do what is right leaving the results to Him Who made us.

Piers Morgan recently succumbed in a debate with Jesse Ventura.  Ventura, former Governor of Minnesota, claims he will run for President if the people demand it and he is guaranteed equal media access. Is the power structure appointing Ventura to succeed Ron Paul as a placater of rational dissidents?

http://12160.info/video/this-is-why-jesse-ventura-is-not-allowed-on-live-tv-every-war?commentId=2649739%3AComment%3A995968&xg_source=msg_com_video

Ventura, like Ron Paul, speaks truth to power and contends on the proper side of a number of issues. Paul appears to be a nominal Christian who believes in the fairy tale god preached in most churches. He and his son, Rand, are pragmatic politicians capable of major political compromises.  Ventura is an atheist.  He hates religions and claims it is responsible for most of the strife of the world.   With no theological undergirding he fails to understand that atheism itself is a form of religion.  In spite of their correct positions on many issues neither Ron Paul nor Jesse Ventura fear God and seek to act under His jurisdiction.

During the Twentieth Century mankind changed their estimation of human character.  Little by little we became self-righteous and as this evil took hold we became alienated from the Triune Christian God replacing His wisdom with our own arrogant opinions and allowing our leaders to do likewise.  We began to overlook the checks and balances our Founders wisely put into our Constitution and allowed our nation to become a democracy rather than a Republic.

Though I disagree with David Barton about the Christian character of many of our Founders we could agree that they understood that leaders could not be trusted with too much power and sought through the Constitution to restrain them.

The question of “good and evil” is critical to maintaining freedom.  If humans are born good history should record peace and prosperity through the reign of a good ruler.  If they are born with a proclivity to sin history should record the disastrous results of human government.  Unfortunately, this question seldom receives an honest answer.  History is replete with war, murder, mayhem, mendacity, and theft, it provides ample evidence that we are evil and conniving.   The Bible informs us unequivocally that we are born in sin, but Americans, including American Christians, have lost that verity.  Instead of taking an oath to obey the Living God our leaders take an oath to obey the Constitution which allows atheists, agnostics, Muslims, Mormons, Jews, Satan worshipers and all other heretics to become our leaders.

Secular governments have murdered millions of Christians and robbed freedom from an even larger number of pagans.

Our once great nation will continue to deteriorate until its citizens humble themselves and repent of the great evils of the past and present.  They must ask the proper questions and provide the proper answers.  Rebellion, resentment, and self-righteousness must fall away and we must see ourselves as God sees us.

On his deathbed God’s favorite, King David, said this: “The God of Israel said, The Rock of Israel spoke to me, ‘he who rules over men righteously, who rules in the fear of God, is as the light of the morning when the sun rises, a morning without clouds, when the tender grass springs out of the earth, through sunshine after rain’.” 2 Samuel 2:3,4  We will have no freedom when our leaders eschew the overarching authority of the Living God.  We were not created to govern ourselves.  We have all sinned and fallen short of the mark we are incapable of righteous governance.

In his writing to the American people East Indian intellectual Vishal Mangalwadi quotes Historian Stanley Wolpert’s description of Emperor Shah Jahan’s imperial reign: “The virtues of humility, obedience, patience, and loyalty were thus instilled in all the mighty generals and civil administrators, at the cost of intellectual initiative, independence of mind, self sufficiency, integrity, and courage…. The whole system was a pyramid of power designed to perpetuate its imperial pinnacle, whether through ruthless violence, extortion, harem intrigue, bribery, or sheer terror.  The formal gardens, marble mausoleums and Persian miniatures were as nectar squeezed from a subcontinent crushed into obedience, milked of its riches by the few, who had reason to lyricize in Persian couplets carved into the ornate walls of Delhi’s Hall of Private Audience, ‘If there be Paradise on earth, It is Here, it is Here, It is Here!’”

Page 113, “The Book that Made Your World”

 

History confirms the fate of Christians in secular societies.  R. J. Rushdoony writes about a Christian named Speratus who was ordered by a Roman Proconsul to renounce his faith and to “swear by the genius of our lord the emperor!”  Like thousands of his brethren Speratus choose death saying, “I know no imperium of this world.  I know my Lord, the King of kings and Emperor of all nations.”

Rushdoony continues: “Rome insisted that it was ready to grant religious liberty provided that any church or religion acknowledged the Roman emperor as lord and the right of Rome to control, regulate, tax, and issue permits for churches.”

No government has the right to control freedom; it is tyranny to do so. Freedom is a gift that God bestows on His people in return for obedience to His Law.   It is disgusting hubris when individuals or governments usurp God’s dominion.

Lou Rockwell writes clearly about the problem with Christians in government: ”It often happens that an ideological movement will make great strides through education and organization and cultural influence, only to take the illogical leap of believing that politics and political influence, which usually means taking jobs within the bureaucracy, is the next rung on the ladder to success. This is like trying to fight a fire with matches and gasoline. This is what happened to the Christian right in the 1980s. They got involved in politics in order to throw off the yoke of the state. Twenty years later, many of these people are working in the Department of Education or for the White House, doing the prep work to amend the Constitution or invade some foreign country. This is a disastrous waste of intellectual capital.”

It is not only a waste of intellectual capital but it is a sin that must be confessed and repented from before God can restore freedom to His people.  When Christians seek help from a wicked government rather than a righteous God it exposes the idol worship that has invaded our churches and provides a lesson on the vulnerability of human reason.

We live in a society that brims with propaganda and is full of dishonest questions and dishonest answers.   If we are to stem our plummeting toboggan Americans must begin asking the right questions and demanding the right answers.


Al Cronkrite is a writer living in Florida, reach him at: trueword13@yahoo.com

Visit his website at:http://www.verigospel.com/

Al Cronkrite is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

Rick Warren Once Again Caught Up In Controversy, Part 2

March 31, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Plastic pastors transparent enough to see through, like Joel Osteen, are not as dangerous as Rick Warren. Modalistic moguls of the painfully-obvious-money-hungry prosperity movement, like T.D. Jakes, are not as dangerous as Rick Warren. Self-serving sorcerers of the false signs and wonders movement, like Todd Bentley, are not as dangerous as Rick Warren. No. None of the before-mentioned personalities or groups are all that dangerous because what you see is what you get. They all lack the ability to change their appearance to accommodate a change in environment. They lack the chameleon-like ability, the self-serving ability, to say what needs to be said in order to keep people in every camp liking them.—Tony Miano

In part 1 I brought you up to speed on what some “watchbloggers” refer to as “Kingsway-gate.”  I’m guessing we haven’t heard the end of this mess.  However, this matter and many others commented on in part 1 have helped to earn Rick Warren the title: Teflon Pastor.  So we shall see what happens with Kingsway-gate.

Common ground in the love of God…or god?

Most likely Saddleback Church congregants are unaware that their pastor signed a controversial document produced by the Yale Center for Faith and Culture titled Loving God and Neighbor Together: A Christian Response to a Common Word Between Us and You.  In July 2008 Christian and Muslim leaders gathered at Yale University for a conference to promote understanding and peace between Christians and Muslims. The letter urged the two faiths to find “common ground” in the love of God.   Since Christians and Muslims do not believe in the same God, one wonders which God we’re to find common ground with.

The Christian Post reported that Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, “disagreed with key points raised in the letter because he felt they compromised the Christian faith [and] amid calls for love in a common God, the letter ‘failed to clearly define the Christian understanding of God as the trinity.’”

So why would any serious Christian sign a document that did not clearly define the Trinity?

Rick Warren claims he believes in the Trinity and we must take him at his word on this.  But to what extent does his belief in the Trinity come through in his ministry to Muslims?  Does he keep his Trinitarian belief close to the vest so as not to offend them?  Or is he forthcoming in his belief that there is one true God who exists in three co-equal, co-eternal, and co-existent Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit?  If his Muslim friends cannot understand his view of the Godhead, perhaps he’s not bothering to explain it to them.

The Christian Post report revealed some of the notable leaders at the conference:

Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad of Jordan; former Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi of Sudan; Geoff Tunnicliffe, CEO and international director of World Evangelical Alliance; Leith Anderson, president of NAE; and Antonios Kireopoulos of the National Council of Churches. A handful of Jewish leaders will also attend the conference.

Scroll through the list of signatories and you’ll discover several other notable leaders (theological liberals) such as Emerging church proponents Brian McLaren, Tony Jones and Scot McKnight; prosperity evangelist David Yonggi Cho; one of the “seeker-sensitive” architects, Bill Hybles; Richard Mouw, President, Fuller Theological Seminary; David Neff, Editor in Chief, Christianity Today; gospel of self-esteem sageRobert Schuller; Marxist sympathizer Jim Wallis (mentioned in part 1); and of course Rick Warren.

Certainly biblical unity can be a good thing, but as Phil Johnson reminds us:

The concept of “unity”  commonly touted today has nothing whatsoever to do with ‘being in full accord and of one mind’ (Philippians 2:2). Instead, it is a broad, visible, ecumenical homogeneity without boundaries.  And that is nothing like the biblical concept of unity.

What did Jesus say regarding unity?  “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword” (Matt. 10:34).

Global peace, at last

April 17, 2005 speaking before 30,000 at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, Rick Warren breathlessly proclaimed his plan:

The bottom line is that we intend to reinvent mission strategy in the 21st century.  As I stated, this will be a new Reformation.  The First Reformation returned us to the message of the original church.  It was a reformation of doctrine – what the church BELIEVES.  This Second Reformation will return us to the mission of the original church.  It will be a reformation of PURPOSE – what the church DOES in the world.

Our goal will be to enlist one billion foot soldiers for the Kingdom of God, who will permanently change the face of international missions to take on these five ‘global giants’ for which the church can become the ultimate distribution and change agent to overcome Spiritual emptiness, Self-serving Leadership, Poverty, disease and ignorance . (Online source)

Warren put forth his program for global Christian dominion.  He also encouraged the crowd, the majority of them Christians, to adopt the same sort of dedication shown by followers of Hitler, Lenin, and Mao.

The New Apostolic Purpose Driven Reformation

As Rick Warren reveals the details of his global agenda, more and more Christians are expressing concern over it.  And so are liberals.  In fact liberals are so uneasy over what he and other dominionists are doing that the New Apostolic Research Group was formed.  Far-left blogger Bruce Wilson is part of it.  In a 2009 column Wilson declared:

Both C. Peter Wagner and Rick Warren want to transform the world, and both [1,2] have proclaimed the advent of a second Reformation. Wagner calls it the New Apostolic Reformation, while for Rick Warren this is a “purpose driven” effort powered by Warren’s global P.E.A.C.E. Plan. In Uganda both visions for societal transformation appear to include the categorical elimination of homosexuality – by any means.

By any means?  Hyperbole, I presume. As a committed lefty, Bruce Wilson fully supports the radical homosexual agenda to normalize sodomy and other aberrant behavior.

Wilson continues:

Rick Warren wrote his 1993 dissertation for a Doctorate of Ministry from Fuller Theological Seminar, under Wagner’s supervision. It is titled New Churches For a New Generation: Church Planting to Reach Baby Boomers. In his 2008 book “Dominion”, C. Peter Wagner describes the process through which this brand of Christianity can take dominion over government and society, and Wagner claims that this can be done within a democratic framework. Wagner clearly states that Rick Warren’s global P.E.A.C.E. Plan is an example of “stage one”: 

Wagner is the Convening Apostle in a movement of charismatic “relational networks” which has extended its reach from the United States to Uganda, and worldwide. Under its umbrella of authority are virulently anti-gay apostles in the United States and Uganda including Lou Engle of TheCall, who led thousands of young people in a twelve hour November 1, 2008 stadium rally in support of California’s anti-gay marriage Proposition Eight. The San Diego event closed with Engle, a member of Wagner’s inner circle of “prophets,” calling for Christian martyrs. Wagner’s plans include reorganizing charismatic Christianity under the authority of these apostles and prophets. (links in original) (Online source)  

Wilson has done his homework on the NAR.  Unbelievably, most Christians have not taken this movement seriously even though these false teachers have united with the Christian Right, politicians, rock-star pastors, entertainers, radio personalities, and a host of Christian leaders.  Likewise, New Age Mormon Glenn Beck has weaseled his way into these groups.  (Learn more about the NAR here.)

Growing a church

In Break Through These 3 Barriers to Growth “Coach” Warren outlines three essentials for breaking through the barriers to church growth. Following is barrier #2:

You must change the primary role of the pastor from minister to leader.

What’s the difference? In leadership, you take the initiative; in ministry, you respond to the needs of others. When someone calls and you pick up the phone, that’s ministry. When you pick up the phone and call someone, that’s leadership. Typically, you learn ministry skills in seminary, but you learn leadership skills in seminars. Pastoring is a balance. Here are five skills you must learn if your church is going to grow:

…Learn to communicate your vision.

…Learn the ability to motivate through messages.

…Learn how to equip for ministry. If you don’t learn how to coach, you will not be able to equip. And, if you do not equip, you will burn out in ministry.

…Learn how to raise money. Those who write the agenda must also be able to underwrite it.

…Learn the skill of managing your time and energy.

What about Rick Warren’s view of growing a church?  In Ordinary Pastors, part 2: A Biblical Definition of Ministry C. J. Mahaney defines pastoral ministry thusly:

Pastoral ministry that is pleasing to God is not ultimately about gifting, influence, or even fruitfulness. It is not about how many books you have written, which conferences invite you to speak, or how many of your sermons are downloaded on iTunes. It is not even about whether your church membership numbers grow or shrink. Pastoral ministry that is pleasing to God is about faithfulness to the charge of 2 Timothy 4. You and I are called to be faithful to this charge.

For the record, here’s what Paul said in 2 Timothy 4:1-5:

I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. 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. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.

Peace + unity = universalism

In part 1, I pointed out that Rick Warren serves on the advisory board of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation and that the foundation’s goal is to unify the world’s major religions.  Following is Warren’s explanation for serving:

The vision and values of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation are desperately needed today…. In any effort to help people learn to live and work together, we must engage the vast networks, resources, wisdom, and influence of the faith communities. My friends, [Roman Catholic] Tony Blair is uniquely prepared with the gifts of temperament, knowledge, experience, leadership, and global respect essential for a task this great. I honestly don’t know of anyone better suited for this challenge. It’s why I agreed to serve on the Advisory Board. The Tony Blair Faith Foundation’s potential for doing good is staggering.

What is staggering is that a Protestant pastor has no problem with a Catholic’s plan to unite all religious faiths.  In a piece I wrote titled Damnable heresies invading the church I touched on the push for unity:

What Warren is purporting is ecumenicism. Actually, we are moving beyond ecumenicism intointerspirituality (interfaith spirituality) or interdenominational cooperation.  “In the name of peace and unity,” says Ray Yungen, “the world’s religions are more and more joining together. And with that joining together will come a consensus that it is narrow minded and even hateful to say there is only one way to salvation.”

Peace and unity has a nice ring to it. But traditional, historic, evangelical Christianity holds that there is only one path to God, one door to enter through. Peter left no doubt when he said, “Salvation is found in no one else” (Acts 4:10). (Also see John 3:16, John 6:66-68, John 14:6, Acts 16:30-31, 1 Tim 2:3-6, 1 John 2:1)  The Bible clearly teaches that all paths do not lead to God.  Those who take a different path will spend eternity in hell.  So the loving thing for a committed Christian to do is to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the lost.  In fact, Jesus commanded His followers to go out into the world and spread the good news.   Those who keep the good news to themselves fail to understand that God gives no second chances.  Jesus said, “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Mat. 7:22).

My reason for this article (part 1&2) is to highlight some very concerning issues related to Rick Warren.  Each of the concerns that were identified could have been substantially expanded upon and if that is the readers’ desire there are links and references that will help one to do that.  My purpose has been to urge his followers and supporters to be like the Bereans who “were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11).

In these dark days ahead, God’s people must be watchful and discerning. We must “Prove [test] all things; hold fast that which is good” (1Thes 5:21).

Recommended articles and videos:

Read Part 1
Articles by Joseph Farah of Worldnet Daily:
The purpose-driven lie—11/16/06
Rick Warren on Syria: ‘A moderate country’–11/26/06
Listen to what Rick Warren said about Syria in an audio version of the video message his church pulled down from YouTube after it was exposed by Farah
There you go again, Rick Warren–12/26/06
Rick Warren’s distortions of reality—12/13/07
“One wonders if Pastor Warren’s discussions with President Assad about peace included a presentation of the Gospel of peace through Jesus Christ, as promoted in the author’s new P.E.A.C.E. Plan. The opportunity for an evangelical leader to meet with the head of a terror regime is rare.” –Lawrence E. Ford, Sr., Institute for Creation Research
Videos
John MacArthur on the Purpose Driven Life
Who’s Driving the Purpose Driven Church
Rick Warren’s SHAPE acronym is explained
Articles
Articles on the New Apostolic Reformation—On Solid Rock Resources


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

Dominionists Are On The Move…And They Mean Business

October 12, 2011 by · 2 Comments 

“Once we have the apostles in placewe will then bring the intercessors and the prophets into the inner circleand we will end up with the spiritual core we need to move ahead for retaking the dominion that is rightfully ours.”  – C. Peter Wagner

Until recently not many folks were aware of a man by the name of C. Peter Wagner.  But Wagner is quickly becoming a person of interest thanks largely to Christian Right (CR) becoming chummy with him and other high-level charismatic dominionists.   In the past couple of months much has been written on pro-family groups uniting of the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) dominionists.  In fact it was the prominent American Family Association (AFA) that sponsored Governor Rick Perry’s August 2011 prayer rally The Response that included many NAR notables in leadership roles.

The NAR’s purpose is to restore the office of Apostles and Prophets and advance the Kingdom of God.  According to Albert James Dager “dominion theology is predicated upon three basic beliefs: 1) Satan usurped man’s dominion over the earth through the temptation of Adam and Eve; 2) The Church is God’s instrument to take dominion back from Satan; 3) Jesus cannot or will not return until the Church has taken dominion by gaining control of the earth’s governmental and social institutions.(Online source)

So – 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 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.” (Online source)

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.

MAINSTREAMING A CULT

Discernment ministries such as Deception in the Church, Let Us Reason, and Herescope have been reporting on the apostate Latter Rain, now the NAR, for decades.  The Latter Rain holds that God is pouring out His Spirit just as He did at Pentecost and is using believers to prepare the world for His Second Coming.  The name has been changed numerous times.  “Presiding Apostle” C. Peter Wagner is the one who dubbed it the New Apostolic Reformation.

Some pro-family organizations such as the AFA, the Family Research Council and Liberty Counsel have joined forces with the NAR to fight the culture war. Until recently not many folks were paying attention – but they are now.  Why?  Because the CR has brought the NAR cult into the mainstream.

In A Warning About Latter Day Apostles Herescope’s Orrel Steinkamp gives us some background info on Wagner:

This restoration teaching percolated on the back burners of the Charismatic Renewal for years, but it was never promoted heavily and no one attempted to systematically implement it on a worldwide scale.  Into this vacuum has stepped  C. Peter Wagner as a central personality.  Wagner has given organizational and promotional impetus to this so-called restoration and has taken bold steps to implement apostolic restoration to a wider Global Church–as a result he is positioned to have a greater influence than many other promoters of apostolic restoration.

Beginning with his association with John Wimber, Wagner moved quickly into charismatic Christianity.  He has systematized certain charismatic spiritual warfare practices and developed his strategic warfare mentality etc.  He also promoted what he called the “Third Wave.”  In this “Third Wave” he saw generic evangelicals getting involved with signs and wonders without adopting traditional Pentecostal Theology.  He has a broad Evangelical pedigree and has notoriety as a former missiologist at Fuller seminary.  He is the recognized heir and successor to Donald McGavern, the founding father of all church growth teaching.  In addition to being a co-founder of the World Prayer Center in Colorado Springs, he is the founding president of Global Harvest Ministries, which is responsible for the “United Prayer Track” of AD2000 and Beyond” as well as many other missions related activities outside the AD2000 organization.  The Billy Graham Lausan conference adopted Wagner’s missions/evangelism agenda.  And he is now in association with many holdovers from the Latter Rain of the 50’s who got a new lease on life in the Charismatic Renewal. 

PINOCCHIO’S NOSE

In one of my articles (here) I said that the CR was uniting with cultists.  Wagner was indignant that I referred to the NAR as a cult. Within days he sent AN URGENT MESSAGE FROM PETER to his mailing list explaining what the NAR is and is not.  Is it a cult, as I claimed?  No, he said. “The NAR is definitely not a cult.”  He went on to say:

Those who affiliate with it believe the Apostles’ Creed and all the standard classic statements of Christian doctrine. It will surprise some to know that the NAR embraces the largest non-Catholic segment of world Christianity. It is also the fastest growing segment, the only segment of Christianity currently growing faster than the world population and faster than Islam.

The NAR is not an organization. No one can join or carry a card. It has no leader. I have been called the “founder,” but this is not the case. One reason I might be seen as an “intellectual godfather” is that I might have been the first to observe the movement, give a name to it, and describe its characteristics as I saw them. … The roots of the NAR go back to the beginning of the African Independent Church Movement in 1900, the Chinese House Church Movement beginning in 1976, the U.S. Independent Charismatic Movement beginning in the 1970s and the Latin American Grassroots Church Movement beginning around the same time. I was neither the founder nor a member of any of these movements, I was simply a professor who observed that they were the fastest growing churches in their respective regions and that they had a number of common characteristics.” (http://www.globalspheres.org/)

Let Us Reason’s Mike Oppenheimer responded to Wagner’s explanation in a piece he wrote A Case of Pinocchio’s Nose:

Wagner is claiming he does not want to be labeled a cult. He, as a teacher, ignores the fact that there are cults within Christianity that do confess many of the tenets of the apostle’s creed on paper, they just don’t implement them in practice.

Cult expert Walter Martin, says Oppenheimer, described a cult as “a group of people gathered about a specific persons [sic] interpretation of the bible… from a theological view point, the cults contain not only a few major deviations from historic Christianity.” Moreover, “A cult in its most simplistic meaning operates in falsehood, either theologically, sociologically or both (in beliefs and practices). Some are theologically dangerous others are sociologically dangerous. Not all cults are physically harmful, but they are harmful spiritually. While the cults more often operate using control, they also operate in falsehood and will have secrets that are not public. They claim to have a new or better way applied to various aspects of Christianity, more often about salvation. This aspect is seen in the NAR as they state the church will not succeed without incorporating their apostles and prophets.” (emphasis added)

TAP DANCING

Recently Wagner appeared on National Public Radio’s Fresh Air.   The tap dance he did around the truth could rival Fred Astaire who made tap dancing seem effortless.  Granted, he did answer some of host Terry Gross’ questions straightforwardly.  For example, he admitted that the NAR’s influence at The Response was “fairly strong and that it was a significant step forward in NAR’s work in America.”  This is a chilling thought!

When asked about his close friend Ted Haggard’s homosexual drug-fueled trysts with a male prostitute while pastoring the 10,000 member New Life Church, he lamented:

But when his homosexuality was revealed, it was a devastating blow to me, because not only was he pastor of this influential church, he was president of the National Association of Evangelicals. And he was a representative of all of us, and we all had a great deal of confidence in him.

When asked about the NAR’S Seven Mountain mandate, he made Fred Astaire look like a novice:

In terms of taking dominion, we don’t – we wouldn’t want to – we use the word dominion, but we wouldn’t want to say that we have dominion as if we’re the owners or we’re the rulers of, let’s say, the arts and entertainment mountain.

What we strive to do, and our goal is to have people in the arts and entertainment mountain who are committed to the kingdom of God. So therefore, we use the adjective they’re kingdom-minded believers, and we – our goal is to try to have as many kingdom-minded believers in positions of influence in the arts and entertainment mountain as possible. And the reason for that is to help bring the blessings of heaven to all those in the arts and entertainment mountain.

To help bring blessings?  Really?  Then why did Wagner teach the following at a conference?:

Dominion has to do with control. Dominion has to do with rulership. Dominion has to do with authority and subduing and it relates to society. In other words, what the values are in heaven need to be made manifest here on earth. Dominion means being the head and not the tail. Dominion means ruling as kings. It says in Revelation Chapter 1:6 that He has made us kings and priests, and check the rest of that verse.  It says “for dominion.” So we are kings for dominion.   (Online source)

Here’s what they mean by “ruling like kings.” The Little Lions is a dominionist website for children.  In a DVD, The Little Lion Chronicles, producers Dave Munoz and James Nesbit tell children that the Creator gave them the name lion.  “We are strong!  We are ferocious!  We are lions!  We are recognized as kings!  We are the keepers of the Royal Way.”

Jesus referred to His followers, not as lions, but as sheep.  Also, the Bible says God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.  Proverbs 16:18 says “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.”

The Bible also says, “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.”

Why?  Because, “there are certain men crept in unawares [wormed their way in], who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ (Jude 1:3, 4). [emphasis added]

Speaking of those who have wormed their way into churches, Wagner also wrote in a newsletter:
The kingdom of God furnishes the template for our stream. We believe that God’s desire for this season can be discerned through ‘The Dominion Mandate’ and ‘The 7-M Mandate.’ Chuck has laid groundwork through his books, The Future War of the Church and God’s Unfolding Battle Plan. I have been doing the same through The Church in the Workplace and Dominion! We want to provide a viable opportunity for apostolic alignment for leaders who minister in all seven mountains….

We feel that Global Spheres, Inc., will fill a gap for many who believe in the direction that Chuck, Doris and I are taking into the future, and who desire official alignment with us as their apostolic leaders. We do not want it to be a traditional, religious organization, but rather an aligned network of leaders from all seven spheres that make up societal structures.This is a way that we can do our part toward fulfilling the Dominion Mandate.” [emphases and links added by Herescope](Online source)

WHAT A REVOLTING DEVELOPMENT THIS IS

Going back to our adroit tap dancer, C. Peter Wagner, I admit he seemed like a rational man during the NPR interview.  He did not, however, seem rational during Todd Bentley’s commissioning ceremony during the Lakeland Outpouring when he “prophesied” over Todd, who was on stage in the prone position sizzling like a rasher of bacon:

“This commissioning represents a powerful spiritual transaction taking place in the invisible world. With this in mind, I take the apostolic authority that God has given me and I decree to Todd Bentley, your power will increase, your authority will increase, your favor will increase, your influence will increase, your revelation will increase.

“I also decree that a new supernatural strength will flow through this ministry. A new life force will penetrate this move of God. Government will be established to set things in their proper order. God will pour out a higher level of discernment to distinguish truth from error. New relationships will surface to open the gates to the future.” (Online source)

Shortly after the televised commissioning ceremony Todd fell from grace.  It was discovered that the man who had been given apostolic authority and whom God allegedly “poured out a higher level of discernment” was having an affair with a woman on his staff (here).  It also came to light that the anointed one’s alcohol consumption had “crossed the line.”   To make matters worse, he divorced his wife and married his mistress.  Not to worry, though.  After repenting and going through a short but intense period ofrestoration under the guidance of “super apostles” Rick Joyner and Bill Johnson, Todd was reinstated.   Now the tattooed wonder is traveling the highways and byways with his new wife “opening the gates to the future.”

What I’ve tried to do here is to give a brief overview of the NAR to help true followers of Jesus Christ understand what’s happening within Christendom—and this is just the tip of the iceberg, my friends!  For decades the Latter Rain was considered a fringe movement but in recent years it has wormed its way into every facet of society.  And it hasn’t been all that hard for them, and other cults, to pull the wool over the eyes of the sheep.  Sadly, this includes undiscerning Christian clergy/teachers/authors/entertainers/media and as I pointed out, many esteemed pro-family leaders. 

I’ll close with this verse from Hosea 4:6:

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you….

Recommended Reading

Links to NAR articles—On Solid rock Resources

C. Peter Wagner: Takes the Kingdom Message to NPR’s “Fresh Air”–by Sara Leslie

Spiritual Warfare Evangelism: How Did We Get Here?–by Orrel Steinkamp, The Plumbline, Volume 6, No. 5 – November/December 2001

C. Peter Wagner Quotes—Deception in the Church

C. Peter Wagner on taking Dominion—Herescope, November 2, 2005

The Coming Kingdom—“Apostle” Rick Joyner explains what the kingdom of God on earth will look like.  Joyner is frequently linked to pro-family conservatives.

Apostolic letter by C. Peter Wagner, May 31 2007

FYI

Does the NAR groups hold to all the standard classic statements of Christian doctrine” as Wagner claims?  Take a look atAdvance K’s Statement of Faith.


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

Christian Leaders: It’s About Time You Test False Teachers

August 28, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

I have written several articles voicing concern over the Christian Right (CR) uniting with leaders in the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) for the purpose of fighting the culture war.  Other Christian bloggers are concerned as well and have been asking valid questions, such as why the CR chooses to involve themselves with these fringe groups.  As of this date we’re still in the dark.  So I’ll toss out the question again: Why do Christian leaders, pastors, and luminaries choose to unite with what Jesus referred to as “ravenous wolves”?

In my article series The Religious Right uniting with Religious Renegades I expressed alarm over some or our Christian leader’s decision to attend Gov. Rick Perry’s The Response: A call to prayer.  Many evangelicals were distressed that respected leaders would be standing shoulder to shoulder with folks who are associated with fringe groups such as the New Apostolic Reformation(NAR), the International House of Prayer (IHOP) and the Word of Faith (WoF).  These groups hold many of the same unbiblical beliefs such as “positive confession.”

“‘Positive Confession’, a movement that came to popular acclaim through supposedly good fruit such as healing, has revealed its true nature as something more like a cult, with extremes of belief that bring the Name of the Lord into disrepute. The roots of Word of Faith doctrine are firmly planted in the soil of the metaphysical cults.” (Cross + Word, 1997)

For several weeks before The Response many CR leaders who weren’t on board with the rally warned their brothers and sisters who were endorsing it that if they went to Perry’s prayer rally they’d be joining forces with false teachers and heretics.  But their warnings went unheeded by many.  A case in point would seem to be Joel Rosenberg.

On August 5, Joel posted his reasons for attending The Response (here).  He later posted a glowing report of his experience (here). From where I stand it appears he chose to shut his ears to friends and fans that urged him not to lend his good name to an event that included IHOP-Kansas City on the leadership team.  Here’s what Joel wrote on his blog:

“The Response” was no ordinary prayer meeting. Personally, I’ve never been to anything like it, and I was blessed by every minute of it. There were no political speeches. No entrance fees. No offering. No fund-raising appeal. No merchandise sold. No light show. No entertainment of any kind. This was simply seven straight hours of prayer and fasting, heartfelt contrition and repentance, Bible reading from the Book of Joel and many other Scriptures, and wonderful worship – both modern praise songs and beloved hymns — with every generation represented along with so many races and ethnic backgrounds. Let’s do more of this.

About those who urged him not to participate he said:

Some evangelicals were critical of “The Response.” They urged people not to attend because they have serious and fundamental theological differences with some of those involved in the event. A few emailed me and urged me not to participate. I heard those concerns and I have strong disagreements with some of the participants, too. But the truth is the vast majority of organizers and participants of this prayer meeting were theologically, morally and ethically solid evangelical, Bible believing followers of Jesus Christ. They included some trusted friends and allies that I have worked with over the years like Dr. James Dobson and Shirley Dobson, Vonette Bright of Campus Crusade for Christ, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, Pastor Greg Matte of Houston’s First Baptist, Penny Nance of Concerned Women for America, Don Wildmon of the American Family Association, among others. Such men and women see the grave crises facing our country. They believe and faithfully teach that the Bible offers the only answers. Together with the governor of an important state, they called the country to pray based on the Scriptures. And many — including the media — paid attention.

Three things.  (1) A large number of organizers and endorsers were NAR/IHOP leaders.  (2) Bible believing follower of Jesus Christ Tony Perkins has partnered with the NAR in the past (see links below).   Tony knows how dangerous these groups are so why does he continue to partner with them?  (3) The AFA sponsored and organized the rally so most likely Bible believing follower of Jesus Christ Don Wildmon chose the leadership team.  Don knew well in advance that some were apostate IHOP-KC leaders. Is Wildmon (and other Bible believing followers of Jesus Christ in AFA’s leadership) so results oriented that it doesn’t matter to them who they unite with as long as they get the results they want?  Another question for AFA is: Do some of its leaders share the NAR’s unbiblical Dominionist beliefs?

Last year Joel Rosenberg was invited to speak at the 2010 Break Forth Canada Conference and promoted the conference positively on his blog.  He shared a platform with those in the contemplative/emerging/new spirituality camp including New Age sympathizer and Emergent guru Leonard Sweet and universalist William P. Young.  When people wrote to voice their distress over his involvement in the conference, here’s how Joel responded:

The reason I am attending is because it is the largest Christian conference in Canada (some 15,000 are expected to attend), I believe the Holy Spirit wanted me to accept the invitation, and I’m not ready to concede such ground to those who are peddling false teaching. I’ve been asked to come and teach the Word of God and preach the gospel and that’s what I intend to do. I can’t explain why Young, for example, was invited. But why cede the entire stage to him? Moreover, at this critical juncture, I hope to explain why the God of the Bible loves Israel so much and why He wants us to help mobilize a global movement of true believers to stand with Israel while so much of the rest of the world turns against her. Thanks for your concerns. I would appreciate your prayers. God bless you. (Online source)

The Holy Spirit wanted him to accept the invitation?  That doesn’t seem very likely in light of what the Bible says:

But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils. Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’ table, and of the table of devils. (I Corinthians 10:20-21)

Please understand that I’m not picking on Joel Rosenberg.  To be fair, he’s not alone.  Many Christians share a platform with men and women they have theological differences with.  I’ve singled Joel out because the reasons he gave for doing it don’t really stand up.  It stands to reason that if he’s invited to “teach and preach the gospel” the other speakers are invited for the same reason.  At the Canada conference attendees were exposed to Sweet’s and Young’s heresy!  Moreover, they were exposed to a false gospel.

In a previous article I pointed out that some of The Response organizers and participants were also involved in the May Day 2010: A cry to God for a Nation in Distress put on by NAR “prophet” Cindy Jacobs of General’s International.  James Dobson promoted the event and recorded an audio message encouraging people to attend. Several CR leaders who attended both prayer rallies have been guests on Mormon Glenn Beck’s radio and TV broadcast.  Glenn’s guests have included Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, mega church Pastor Jim Garlow, David Barton of Wall Builders, televangelist James Robison (he didn’t attend The Response), even Joel Rosenberg.  Rev. John Hagee was one of the only pastors to pray solo at The Response.  Hagee chose Glenn Beck as a keynote speaker for “A Night to Honor Israel.”  CR leader Gary Bauer, President of Our American Values and a board member of Hagee’s Christians United for Israel, also spoke.   For readers who are unfamiliar with Rev. Hagee, he’s the founder and pastor of San Antonio-based Cornerstone Church which is one of America’s largest WoF churches (prosperity gospel, name it and claim it).  According to G. Richard Fisher, Hagee is a false teacher:

[C]areful evaluation of the teachings of Hagee…reveals false teaching and a defective view of a basic and essential issue regarding salvation and the Gospel. Hagee preaches another way of salvation for the Jew, which is in direct violation of Paul’s warnings in Galatians 1:6-9.  (Online source)

Some of you are probably thinking, “Hagee’s books line the shelves of Christian bookstores and sell like hotcakes so he must be a solid Christian.”

It ain’t necessarily so:

“How a book sells is not an indication of its merit. The American public has a seemingly bottomless appetite for nonsense, as evidenced by the countless tomes about astrology, aliens from outer space, quack diets, and UFOs that have regularly graced best-seller lists over the years. Some books that sold millions have later been exposed as hoaxes. A slot on the best-seller list tells you exactly one thing about a book: that a lot of people bought it.” (Online source)

The point I’m making is that even discerning Christians are finding it difficult to ferret out true believers from those that have a very different agenda.

I have one final question for CR leaders:  Do you not know that:

Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your houseneither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds(2 John 9-11) (Bold mine)

The NAR’s aberrant doctrines and beliefs are causing division in the Church.  In Romans 16:17-18, Paul writes,

Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned and avoid them. For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. (See also Philippians 3:17-19).

CR leaders must be obedient to God’s Word and stop uniting with those who are deceiving the hearts of the simple and do as Paul says: Mark them!

I’ll leave you with an excerpt from a 1988 message given by the late Dr. Walter Martin Warning of the Word Faith Movement’s teaching to the church:

Jesus said there will come men who will speak claiming their authority is from me…There will come men who will speak in my Name. That is, I am supposedly saying this to you – that’s a very important phrase!  They are going to come and say I’m speaking to you in my Name, they will work miracles in my Name, they will cast out devils…they will prophesy and preach. But when I meet them I will say, leave me, I never knew you, workers of iniquity!

Why? Because they use His authority and His Name because the power was in Jesus’ Name, or in Jesus’ authority, not in them. And God honored the Name of His Son. And they took that as a means of teaching their own false doctrines and false prophecies and because of that they corrupted the faith of the church. But inwardly, spiritually, they really roooaaar! And if you don’t know fleece from fur, you’re dinner, dumb dumb.  And the only way you can know fleece from fur is to know how to test them. And you don’t test them by Walter Martin or by Norman Geisler, as good as the apologist and defenders of Christianity might be and as much as you trust them. You don’t test them by other people.  You test them by Scripture. Then if your fidelity is the Scripture, and your allegiance is the Scripture, you reject them! But, says Paul, in the last days men are going to be drawn away by false teachers and prophets in the Church speaking in the Name of Jesus and you’re not going to test them.  You’re going to go along with them. And they’re gonna fragment and divide the Church because you won’t test them.  Well, it’s about time we test them. (Note: For clarity I took the liberty of making a few changes.  The original quote is onLet Us Reason Ministries.)

RECOMMENDED READING

The New Apostolic Reformation article links—On Solid Rock Resources

Word of Faith article links—On Solid Resources

Apostles and Prophets and the Foundation of the Church: Biblical Exegesis that Proves that Only the New Testament Apostles are Authoritative–Critical Issues Commentary

IHOP Enters Dominion/Christian Right Politics—Herescope

Former IHOP Member Explains Why IHOP (International House of Prayer) Is A Cult–Sola Sisters website, posted by Christine Pack

VIEW VIDEOS:

The Devil’s Algebra (False teaching and the real Gospel of Jesus Christ)—Jacob Prasch, Morial Ministries

Part 1 of 4 – Morningstar Ministries – Rick Joyner and Bob Jones – God is moving

The Religious Right’s Modern Day Spartan Army–Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council talks with NAR “Apostle” Rick Joyner

America Needs Godly Leaders–Tony Perkins of FRC talks with televangelist James Robison


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

My Response to “The Response” Gov. Rick Perry’s Call to Prayer

August 10, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Having previously written a piece on The Response voicing my legitimate concerns over Gov. Rick Perry’s August 6th prayer event that was held at Reliant Stadium, now that all is said and done I’ll respond to what I watched via the live streaming on their website.

As the camera panned a sea of people with their arms outstretched to heaven, many of them with tear-stained faces singing praises to God, my eyes well up and I was moved.  There is something about that Name…

Christians go to big events expecting to hear a Christian band playing praise and worship music.   It breaks down barriers, draws the crowd together and pulls them out of their chairs and onto their feet.  The right kind of music puts people in a worshipful mood.   Did you know that the steady beat in conjunction with word repetition…Jesus, Jesus, Jesus…can put individuals into an altered state of consciousness?  But that’s an article for another time.

The band played mostly contemporary music and also some old hymns.  I knew the words so I sang along!  Hearing the Name Above all Names booming through the air is a wonderful way to start the day.

For close to 3 hours I was glued to my computer screen.  Quite honestly, I was both moved and infuriated.

 

THE GOOD

 

I’ve stated before that I believe it’s good for Christian groups gathering together to fast and pray for America and to repent of our egregious sins against God.  Praying is what Christians do.  Through prayer and Bible reading we are able to connect with God. Because our nation is in dire straits we need to call on God for His help in putting our Humpty Dumpty nation back together again. We serve a loving, gracious God.  We have the hope that our prayers will be answered.

I believe Gov. Perry’s call for prayer and fasting was a good idea.  Not many politicians would stick their necks out like he did.  He got pummeled by the liberal press, even worse by the far-left loons.  And he stood his ground.

Gov. Perry had invited 49 governors.  Only Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback attended.  He joined Gov. Perry on stage and said a brief prayer.  Florida Gov. Rick Scott participated via a videotaped message.  Texas Rep. Louis Gohmert was also there.

It warmed my heart to see thousands of Americans join together to pray, fast, weep and mourn for the country they love.  Every ethnic background and all generations, from the very young to the very old, came up on stage to pray.  Time and time again Scripture was cited.  Some repented for the “shedding of innocent blood” of 50 million babies who have died as a result of Roe v. Wade. People prayed for our awesome military.  They prayed for the state of Israel too.

The best part by far was hearing a multitude of voices lift up the precious Name of Jesus.

 

THE BAD

 

So, what went wrong?  Gov. Perry made an unfortunate decision when he chose his leadership team.

“Apostle” Doug Stringer of the International House of Prayer (IHOP) cult hosted the event so he was on stage all day.  Seeing Stringer in the limelight was my first clue that the American Family Association (AFA), the pro-family group that sponsored the event, had made the decision to ignore the pleading of Christians who urged them not to unite with false teachers.  I was one who pleaded with them.  (Read my piece here)

Doug Stringer seemed like the perfect choice to host the event.  He’s articulate, has a soothing voice, his prayers are fluid and heartfelt, and he demonstrated that he is more than capable of handling a microphone!  From all appearances Doug is a “godly man” who has a passion for God.  What I’m leading up to will no doubt shock some of you.  This so-called apostle is up to his eyeballs in a cult.  Any person who shares the beliefs of the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR), as Stringer does, is a false teacher.  Anyone who shares the beliefs of the Word of Faith (WoF) movement is a false teacher.  Anyone who stands on a platform with false teachers, as some of the most respected Christians in America did, ignores what God says in Scripture:

And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove (rebuke) them.” (Eph 5:11)

In 2 Tim 3:5 Paul explains that some men have a form of godliness, but they deny the power of God.  He admonishes Timothy to turn away from such men.

Gov. Perry and other politicians along with many in the Christian Right (CR) did not turn away from false teachers; instead they invited these men and women to break bread with them.  CR leaders were warned that they were uniting with cultists, but instead of turning away they received them.  And then they publicly embraced them, even prayed with them.

Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your houseneither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds(2 John 9-11) (Bold mine)

 

THE UGLY

 

Let me give you the Cliff Notes version of the NAR’s warped theology that is being introduced through the back door of many evangelical churches:

Advocates believe they are equal with Jesus Christ and have the same power that Jesus had.

They believe they receive extra-biblical revelations from God apart from Scripture and they are able to rewrite doctrine with “new understanding.”

They are modern day prophets and apostles and claim that the biblical ministry of an apostle has been forgotten so God has called them to restore it.

They are “Super Apostles” second only to God.

They believe the church is a theocracy not a democracy and the government of the church must be under the leadership of restored “apostles.”

They believe “all people, nations, and demonic principalities must submit to these so-called apostles and prophets, who will lead God’s end-times army in establishing His kingdom on earth.”

They believe that through the power of the Holy Spirit—who was the source of all of Jesus’ power when He was here on earth– they can perform miracles even greater than Jesus performed because they have access to the same power source, the Holy Spirit.

They’ve been commanded by God to “take dominion” over certain spheres of influence.  They call this the Seven Mountain mandate. These mountains of influence are (1) Arts and Entertainment; (2) Business/Economy; (3) Education; (4) Family; (5) Government; (6) Media; (7) Religion.

According to NAR czar C. Peter Wagner,

We can pray for all these mountains with power because we have that power that Jesus had and it’s up to us to be in a place where we’re open to release that power of the Holy Spirit so that His name will be know and that His kingdom will advance.(Online source)

Did you get that?  Wagner believes born again Christians have the same power that Jesus had.

Do we…really?

No!  First off, the Holy Spirit is a not a personal power source and God’s people are not Energizer Bunnies!   Secondly, the Holy Spirit cannot be manipulated.  Thirdly, if we have the same power that Jesus had, why are true believers unable to walk on water? Why can’t we stop a tornado in its tracks?  Why are God’s people unsuccessful at bringing our dead loved ones back to life?   Jesus performed miracles with a wave of a hand.  He also used words, but very few.  “Lazarus,” He commanded, “come forth!” Lazarus, who had been dead 4 days, instantly obeyed the Voice and came out of the tomb. (John 11:43)  I for one would like to see Peter Wagner or Cindy Jacobs or Rick Joyner or Todd Bentley perform the same kinds of miracles Jesus did.

Listen to what Mark Vrankovich says about these people:

[T]hese Super Apostles do not follow Paul’s example. They are rigorous self-promoters who see power and wealth as important goals. They demand that you cede (to yield typically by treaty) to their authority. Church members must sign “covenants” stating that they will obey the church leadership. Church leaders themselves must “submit” their lives to the Super Apostles. To not submit is to rebel against God’s will and condemn you to a barren Christian life outside the protection of the Super Apostles magical “umbrella of authority”.  (Online source)

Calling them heretics does not qualify as an argument, which is the reason I cited a small portion of their heretical beliefs.  (Read more about the NAR/Dominionism here)

What does the WoF movement believe?  Faith is a force.  Our words are the containers of our faith or fear.  Through faith we can create our own reality.  Pastor Gary Gilley explains that supporters of this movement believe that faith works like a mighty power or force. Through faith we can obtain anything we want — health, wealth, success, whatever. However, this force is only released through the spoken word. As we speak the words of faith, power is discharged to accomplish our desires. (Bold by author)

Later in his article Gilley says of faith teacher Kenneth Copeland,

Kenneth Copeland states the faith formula this way: “All it takes is 1) Seeing or visualizing whatever you need, whether physical or financial; 2) Staking your claim on Scripture; and 3) Speaking it into existence.”

More…

Paul Yonggi Cho, borrowing from the occult, has developed what he calls the “Law of Incubation.” Here is how it works: “First make a clear-cut goal, then draw a mental picture, vivid and graphic, to visualize success. Then incubate it into reality, and finally speak it into existence through the creative power of the spoken word” (Online source)

As you can see, the NAR (Dominionist, Latter Rain, Manifest(ed) Sons of God) and the WoF (positive confession, name it and claim it) movements share many of the same beliefs.  I don’t have the space to go into IHOP.  What’s important to “get” is that it’s an outright cult and some of its members including, as I said above, the very pleasant host Doug Stringer, were on Rick Perry’s leadership team.   Why?  Only AFA, the group that sponsored the event and its founder Tim Wildmon, has the answer.

 

DANCING WITH WOLVES

 

Knowing what you now know about what these people believe, does it make sense that Gov. Perry, the AFA, CR leaders, pastors, ministry leaders, politicians and Christian luminaries would have anything to do with these wolves?  I use wolves because that’s what the Bible calls false teachers.  Wolves are ferocious creatures who stalk their prey before they pounce and devour it!  This is how God views these people!  They stalk and devour.  They are cunning and crafty.  This is why God’s people are to avoid them like the plague.

Not long ago I wrote a piece on prayer titled Are You Praying to the Only True God?  I’ll close with this quote:

The scriptures speak 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. 

 

“This is life eternal, that they might know thee, the only true God,

and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (John 17:3).

 

Recommended Reading:

New Apostolic Reformation–On Solid Rock, links to articles

Word of Faith/Televangelists—On Solid Rock, links to articles

IHOP & the Latter Rain—Herescope

IHOP Enters Christian/Dominion Christian Right Politics—By Ken Silva


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

Texas Governor’s Aug 6th Prayer Event Leadership Team Includes Cult Members

August 2, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

The prayer event I’m speaking of is The Response: a call to prayer for a nation in crisis.  The cult Gov. Rick Perry has involved himself with is the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR). The NAR has dozens of offshoots and an assortment of  names such as Dominionists, Latter Rain, Kansas City Prophets, Third Wave, Joel’s Army, Manifest(ed) Sons of God, Five-Fold Ministry, to name a few.  Another offshoot, and the one I’ll deal with here, is the International House of Prayer (IHOP), a splinter group of the Kansas City Prophets.   Confusing? You betcha!

I’m not alone in my view that much of the NAR and IHOP theology and doctrines are unbiblical, most conservative Bible scholars, apologists and pastors agree.   According to Brannon Howse:

The Response…is being promoted as a time of prayer and repentance. However, how can Christians and Christian leadersgather together in a spiritual enterprise and a spiritual service, with individuals that embrace a theology and doctrine that teaches a different Jesus and a different gospel? I, and thousands of pastors and theologians, believe that the Word of God reveals that the teaching of the New Apostolic Reformation, (NAR) the Word of Faith movement and the prosperity gospel is completely unbiblical.  (Online source)

The American Family Association (AFA) is sponsoring the event. AFA is part of the Religious Right a.k.a. the Christian Right (CR). Is the fact that cultists are involved just a slip up or a failure on the part of AFA to fact check?  No. They know perfectly well who these people are and have decided to unite with them anyway.

So why would a so-called Christian group pal around with members of a Christian cult?  In a word, pragmatism.  This is the philosophy that “the end justifies the means.”  In this case the end is getting people motivated to show up at a prayer rally.  The NAR has the resources to accomplish this task because a large part of what they do is planning global prayer events.  Although I have no way of validating how this project was conceived it’s not out of the realm of possibility that the NAR wanted to do a prayer event in Texas that included the governor so they presented the plan to the AFA and a partnership was created.   Since it benefits politicians to have the support of the Religious Right, Perry also jumped on board. Another possibility is that AFA’s leadership has Dominionist leanings and they, feeling comfortable with this group, sponsored the event.  Finally, it very well might be that the governor’s staff came up with the idea and presented it to the AFA, they liked the idea and agreed to sponsor it.  Although it would be interesting to know how the idea for this event was conceived and how this group of organizers was put together, the fact remains that Gov. Perry and the CR are involved with cultists.

It’s not a stretch to say that most folks, including the governor, have never heard of the NAR or IHOP-KC, so it’s possible that at first he was unaware that cultists were on The Response leadership team.  He knows now!  And rumor has it that he might be backing away from the event.  We shall see what happens on August 6th.

On the other hand, the AFA is not backing away.  As of today AFA.net has a large advertisement on its website.  But I’m getting ahead of myself.  More on the AFA after I summarize the NAR’s beliefs.

Let there be no doubt that the NAR is a cultic movement within many Pentecostal and Charismatic churches.  It stresses supernatural signs and wonders, prayer, and spiritual warfare. According to C. Peter Wagner, former professor at Fuller Theological Seminary, church growth guru, and NAR author,  the new apostolic churches, better than any I have previously studied, combine, on the highest level, solid technical principles of church growth with solid spiritual principles of church growth. (Online source)

The NAR believes that God is restoring the lost offices of Prophet and Apostle and that the modern-day apostles and prophets are gifted with the same gifts as the New Testament era Apostles.  What do the apostles and prophets do?  Wagner explains:

The apostles bring spiritual government to the pastors of the city so that the pastors of the city can do the job that God has given them in a much more effective way. The only thing is that the pastors of the city have to recognize the existence of apostles and be willing to acknowledge their governmental role. This hasn’t happened too much yet. (Online source)

Wagner said this over a decade ago.  Today it is definitely happening… too much.

The NAR also believes God is giving them new revelation, thus they are able to rewrite Church doctrine. Moreover, these so-called apostles and prophets plan to aggressively “retake the reins of our country” for Christ. They also hold that Jesus Christ cannot return until Christians subdue and rule the earth.  You say, “that’s crazy!  The Bible doesn’t teach that!”  True….which makes one wonder how a savvy politician like Rick Perry—who’s considering a run for the presidency–got bushwhacked by a band of religious renegades.

That’s it in a nutshell.  (For more on the NAR go to Recommended Reading.)

Returning to the AFA, what’s important to know is that it is a prominent Christian organization that has been on the frontlines of America’s culture war since 1977.  How prominent?  According to their website,

AFA is one of the largest and most effective pro-family organizations in the country with over two million online supporters and approximately 180,000 paid subscribers to the AFA Journal, the ministry’s monthly magazine. In addition, AFA owns and operates nearly 200 radio stations across the country under the American Family Radio (AFR) banner. 

AFA is big.   My reason for bringing attention to them is simple: Their supporters have a right to know if the AFA leadership shares the NAR’s unbiblical beliefs — or they’re simply deceived.

In my opinion the AFA’s leadership is anything but deceived.  Whoever chose The Response leadership team knew perfectly well that they were choosing members of the IHOP-KC and I have good reason for believing this.  Several weeks ago an article I wrote titled The Religious Right unites with Religious Renegades, Part 1 was featured on AFA’s blog Rightly Concerned.  After 2 days my piece was pulled — with no explanation for several days.  Why did they suddenly pull it?  Because I connected the dots between the CR and the NAR.  (Blogger David Brumley noticed that my article disappeared from AFA’s blog.  He became curious and began digging to find out why.  There’s not enough space to explain what he found.  Read his report.  You will find it very interesting.)

Christian discernment groups have been all over the Perry debacle.  They’re rightly concerned that the NAR is a major player in the event and that their participation will give these wolves credibility, not only with people of faith but also with politicians.   CR leaders must heed Christ’s warning:

For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect. (Mark 13:22).

In an effort to right the wrongs here I’m going to include the names (it’s biblical) of The Response leadership and endorsers.  Some of them are high-profile Christian leaders, others not so much.

Leadership:

AFA

Don Wildmon—Founder

Buddy Smith—Executive VP

NAR/IHOP

Luis & Jill Cataldo-Mike Bickle’s International House of Prayer (IHOP)

Randy & Kelly Bohlander-IHOP & Lou Engle’s The Call

Dave Sliker–The Call & The Elijah Revolution

Doug Stringer–NAR “Apostle”

Honorary Co-Chairs:

James & Shirley Dobson

Richard Land–Director of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission

Penny Nance—CEO Concerned Women for America

Tony Perkins—President of the Family Research Council

Tony Evans—President of the Urban Alternative

Rev. Samuel Rodriguez –President National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference / Hispanic Evangelical Association

Endorsers: (More here)

David Barton–President & Founder, WallBuilders

Jim Garlow—Senior Pastor Skyline Church

John Hagee—Cornerstone Church; John Hagee Ministries

Timothy Johnson–Founder and National Chairman, Fredrick Douglass Foundation

Max Lucado—Pastor, author, speaker

Kelly Shackelford–President and Chief Counsel, Liberty Institute

NAR Endorsers (includes “Apostles” and “Prophets”)

C. Peter Wagner—Presiding Apostle of the International Coalition of Apostles.  (According to Herescope: “Wagner’s presence indicates the marshaling of forces of his Seven Mountains Army behind a potential presidential candidate.”  Wagner and his wife’s names were recently removed from the list with no explanation)

Cindy Jacobs—General’s International

Mike Bickle—Director, International House of Prayer – Kansas City

Ché Ahn–Senior Pastor, Harvest Rock Church

John Benefiel—Heartland Apostolic Prayer Network

Laura Allred—Founder, Captured and Back to Life Movement

Nick Nilson–Youth & Young Adult Pastor, Lakewood Church (Joel Osteen’s church)

This is only a partial list.  And the list is growing.

You’re probably wondering, Is something sinister going on behind the scenes?

According to Herescope:

This type of prayer is not about evangelism. It is about Dominionism. This movement has been going on for decades now, but it gained momentum and popularity under the auspices of C. Peter Wagner, who first articulated this agenda in numerous books on the topic. Wagner… began to experiment with novel forms of worship, including prayer, in the 1980s. Wagner says that his idea about prayer began to change when he was exposed to Paul Cain in 1988 and Cindy Jacobs in 1989.  Paul Cain was a father figure in the “Kansas City Prophets” which formed the IHOP … movement. Cindy Jacobs has since become one of Wagner’s chief lieutenants in the global Dominion movement, particularly through the vehicle of prayer. (Online source)

The Response is not the only event where the CR and the NAR have joined forces.  In my 3 part article on the CR uniting with the NAR, I took no joy in reporting that “prophet” Cindy Jacobs and General’s International held the May Day 2010: A Cry To God For A Nation In Distress at the foot of the Lincoln Memorial and that pro-family conservative Janet Porter  of Faith2Action organized the event.  Among the many promoters were James and Shirley Dobson.  According to the Christian Post intercessors included Janet Porter, Tony Perkins, Jerry Newcombe, host and senior producer of “The Coral Ridge Hour,” the television outreach of the late Dr. D. James Kennedy, and Rev. Pat Mahoney, director of the Christian Defense Coalition.  NAR leaders Cindy JacobsDutch Sheets and Chuck Pierce offered prayers of “Repentance for the Mountain of Religion” and for “The Church.” A large number of pro-family conservative leaders showed up for the prayer meeting.

Janet Porter is a huge supporter of Israel.  On May 19, 2011 she ran a full page ad in the Wall Street Journal and in the Jerusalem Post on May 20th:  Israel: You’re Not Alone. We Stand With You.  Following are some of the signatures of CR leaders Porter gathered for her ad: Tim Wildmon, Mike Huckabee, James Dobson, Mathew Staver, Lou Sheldon, Bill McCartney and Judge Roy Moore.  She also gathered signatures from NAR “apostles” and “prophets” Chuck Pierce, Rick JoynerMike Bickle and Che Ahn. Far be from me to criticize Janet for supporting Israel.  I’m with her on this one.  What troubles me is her ongoing friendship with wolves in sheep’s clothing.

There’s more.  A number of prominent pastors and Christian leaders attended Televangelist James Robison’s Leadership Summit in September of 2010 and again in June of 2011.  Robison conducted the gathering because he believes, there is an insidious attack on God, faith, family and freedom” and that God was planning on using this group of “national leaders to help inspire a spiritual awakening, a return to sanity and a restoration of freedom’s foundation. (Online source)

Robison’s blog provides visitors with a list of attendees along with those who encouraged and assisted in bringing about the gatherings.   The list includes some of the leaders and endorsers of The Response such as AFA founder Don Wildmon, Tony Perkins, Jim Garlow, Richard Land and Tony Evans.  Emergent Church guru Dallas Willard is also on the list.  And there are several infamous televangelists.  For example: Kenneth Copeland, Creflo Dollar, Joyce Meyer and Rod Parsley.  On the roll with prosperity preachers you find David Meyers (Summit Ministries), Jay Richards (Discovery Institute), Maggie Gallagher (National Organization for Marriage), Wayne Grudem (author and professor of Phoenix Seminary) and Rabbi Daniel Lapin (American Alliance of Jews and Christians).  David Barton and Ravi Zacharais were on the list but their schedules did not permit their attendance.   You’ll find the entire list here.

I have thrown out a number of names, events, and organizations in this article.  My intent is not to confuse but rather to provide limited insight into how blurry the lines are becoming between true believers and cultists.  I hope readers will do their homework and follow the links I’ve provided.

The serious Christian must ask oneself if it is prudent to support false teachers in an effort to “take back America.”  You’ll find the answer in the Bible:

And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove (expose) them. (Eph 5:11)

Exposing unfruitful (worthless) works is not happening!  What’s happening is that so-called Christian organizations are teaming up with outright heretics and unbelievers.  What does the Bible say on this subject?

“Be ye not unequally yoked  together (team up) with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness and what communion hath light with darkness?”  (2 Cor. 6:14)

It seems many Christian leaders do not have an ounce of discernment.  Here they are standing on platforms all across America in front of thousands of people calling for repentance when they’re the ones who need to repent for going against God by uniting with wolves in sheep’s clothing!   Many in the discernment ministries have been warning the Religious Right about their alliances with those in false religions the cults.  How do they respond?  By thumbing their noses and continuing their march down the path to destruction.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, if you really want God to bless this nation His people need to start keeping His commands beginning with Jesus’ command to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with the lost.  He said, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” (John 14:5)

Do you love Him?  Then prove it.

Recommended Reading:

New Apostolic Reformation—Email Brigade

Links to articles

Joel’s Army—By Jewel Grewe

The Latter Rain Revival Movement, Part 1—By Thomas Ice

The Formation of a Revolution—Herescope Blog

What is Dominionism? —By Sarah Leslie

IHOP’s New Breed Leaders—Herescope

Mike Bickle’s Gigolo Jesus—Herescope

Mike Bickle of IHOP wants book about Catholic mystics to be “manual for IHOP-KC”—John Lanagan

The Ramp Exposed—Babylon Forsaken

You’ll find many names of false prophets on this site.  Watch the video to see the NAR “apostles” and “prophets” gathered together for Todd Bentley’s commissioning ceremony.

The Shocking History of Spiritual Warfare—End Times Prophetic


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

CNN Catches up to The New Fourth Estate Regarding Walid Shoebat

July 18, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

On 13 July 2011, CNN’s Anderson Cooper reported on the so-called Islamic terrorist export, Walid Shoebat, who has been duping The MSM and making a mint off of Americans claiming he is now a devout Christian after years as a Palestinian Liberation Organization terrorist. [1]

See Video here: http://t.co/7o0UkZf

On 25 February 2008, this reporter attended one of Walid Shobat’s shows in Melbourne, Florida and most all of the 2,000 seats at The King Center in Brevard County were filled with fannies attached to Americans who paid $18.00 for a seat and upwards of $1,000.00 to attend the pre-show meet and greet with the ‘three stooges’ of Christian fundamentalism during their “WAKE UP AMERICA! Confessions of 3 X-Terrorists” show.

“Walid Shoebat, Kamal Saleem and Zachariah Anani [who was a no show that night] are the three stooges of the Christian right. These self-described former Muslim terrorists are regularly trotted out at Christian colleges…to spew racist filth about Islam on behalf of groups such as Focus on the Family…Curly, Larry and Mo, who all say they are born-again Christians, engage in hate speech and assure us it comes from personal experience. They tell their audiences that the only way to deal with one-fifth of the world’s population is by converting or eradicating all Muslims.” [2]

This event was sponsored by Project: Restoration, an “educational performing arts ministry that emphasizes Hebraic teaching and support of Israel. [Whose] mission [and] ministry is to restore the biblical and historical truth of God’s word regarding His commandments, His people, His land, and His coming kingdom [by working] together with Christian and Jewish communities to bless Israel and the Jewish people. [For they] believe that we are living in a time spoken of by prophets as the end of times when Israel will be a ‘cup of trembling in the hands of the nations’ and that we must stand with Israel and the God of Israel [for the] Restoration of the Kingdom of Israel and the return of Israel’s King, Yeshua ha Maschiach (Jesus the Messiah).” [3]

Missing from the Christian website and the rhetoric from the speakers were the teachings of Jesus who warned that, “What ever you do unto the least; you do it unto God…Stop judging…Stop condemning…Forgive and you will be forgiven…For the measure with which you measure any other will be measured back unto you.” [Luke 6:36-38] and Jesus’ promise that, “The Peacemakers shall be called the children of God.” [Matthew 5:9].

While the teachings of Jesus were neglected, I was most encouraged when Walid kicked off his show claiming that the “stupid” New York Times and a “stupid” journalist [this reporter] who interviewed his relative Kamal Younis were smearing his good reputation of being an ex-terrorist by exposing his fabricated biography.

From his pulpit, Walid insisted that his father is a fundamentalist and that Kamal Younis’s brother Jawad lost his arm making a bomb and is an attorney who defends other terrorists.

On 3 February 2008, I published my interview with Kamal Younis, titled “USA Air Force Academy Feb. 6, 2008: Failure of Intelligence to Support the Troops” from which I excerpt:

The infamous darling of fear filled fundamentalist Christians and Jews of the cult spewed by the likes of John Hagee and the idiot wind blown on FOX’s Hannity & Colmes, Bill O’Reilly and Neil Cavuto show, will be show boating at the annual political forum at the US Air Force Academy on Feb. 6, 2008.

Walid Shoebat, author of “Why We Want to Kill You” has built a lucrative speaking career by manipulating the fears and whipping up hatred between Jews and Muslims and he claims to be a former Islamic terrorist who has converted to Christianity.

Shoebat also feels very strongly that the ongoing war against Israel has nothing to do with an Arab desire for a Palestinian state, “Never in history was there a Palestinian state,” said Shoebat, “we never wanted a Palestinian state – even today the Palestinians do not want a Palestinian state. They want the destruction of the Jews, period. It’s a religious holy war.”

Keith Davies, the director of the Walid Shoebat Foundation announced that not just Walid, but two other ‘former terrorists’ s would be filling the heads of our troops and he was, “delighted that the United States Air Force has recognized the brave stand that these men take in educating the American people on the real causes of terrorism. The fact that the Academy has invited our speakers is an important step as to understanding the issue of terrorism and the issues surrounding the problems of the Middle East.”

The Navy failed to protect the troops when they failed to investigate the history of Walid Shoebat!

I learned from one of Walid’s many Palestinian American relatives, Kamal Younis, who checked his facts with other relatives and everyone of them agreed that, “Walid’s entire biography is a manufactured fabrication. His handlers have taken one point and have twisted it and built up a fictional story.”

That fictional story can be read @ www.shoebat.com/bio.php

Kamal clued me in, “His bio claims that his grandfather was the Muslim Mukhtar (chieftain) of Beit Sahour-Bethlehem. It neglects to mention that Beit Sahour is adjacent to Bethlehem, not a part of Bethlehem and also ignores the fact that in Beit Sahour at that time there were eight tribes; two Muslim and six Christian. Walid’s grandfather was only the Mukhtar for one of the Muslim tribes. Walid’s bio claims his grandfather was a friend of Haj-Ameen Al-Husseni, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and notorious friend of Adolf Hitler. Walid’s grandfather never even met him and was a peaceful man.

“I helped Walid’s father Ahmad get a job and we both attended Humboldt State College in Arcata, California, from 1954-1960. Walid was born in September of 1960 in Beit Sahour after his American mother and father returned there from America. His older sister and brother were born in the USA, and the family lived in Jericho until 1968, then in Saudia Arabia for two years then returned to Beit Sahour.

“In 1976, his sister Mona was coming home from school with her friends and were stopped and beaten up by Israeli soldiers, they nearly broke Mona’s back. This made Walid very angry and shortly thereafter he attended his first demonstration against the occupation. In 1977 Walid was caught distributing Palestinian flags and was arrested and held for about two weeks in Mascubia Prison, until his mother went to the Embassy and got him released.

“The biggest act of ‘terror’ he ever committed was to glue Palestinian flags on street posts. But, when he was in jail he met someone who invited him to join a group against Israel. In 1977 Walid and his friends put packages behind a bank, but there were no explosives in it. That year he also met some Jehovah Witnesses and joined them for a while.

“Walid speaks about his grandfathers whom he never met, never knew and he labels them as terrorists! I knew them and they were peaceful men.

“Walid came to the U.S. in 1978 and met an Afghani friend and they went into business together, but it didn’t work out, so he moved to Chicago in 1981 where many cousins live and asked for help. He went to Loop College [now Harold Washington College] and was appointed as a foreign student advisor; a position offered him so he could pay his tuition.

“The repo man took Walid’s truck and after that he went back to California. He met a Palestinian girl there and they got married and had a son. But, he beat his wife and that marriage broke up.

“Walid’s maternal grandparents were wealthy and when they died Walid was to share the inheritance with his sister and brother, but his siblings never received a dime from their grandparent’s estate. And, while his own father was in a nursing home in California Walid took his mother and moved far away from him to another city.

“Walid claimed on CNN that he met Sheikh Jamal and was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and claimed he had been a member of a U.S. sleeper cell terrorist group. All his relatives doubt this greatly, but we do believe he is being paid big money to keep saying bad things about Muslims.” [4]

On 5 February 2008, I received an email threat of a lawsuit from Walid’s handler unless I apologized and recanted what I reported.

I emailed back that I would do neither but took Walid up on his offer to engage in a dialogue. I have yet to receive a reply or a legal notice, but I did publish the email threat and parts of Walid’s epistle defending his terrorist past with my side of the dialogue on the 7th of February: http://j.mp/nbTQjA

I have known Walid’s relative, Kamal Younis as a friend since 2003. I met him through the non-profit Interfaith Olive Trees Foundation for Peace dedicated to raising awareness of and funds to purchase fruit bearing trees on both sides of The Wall in Israel Palestine who hope to replace the over one million trees destroyed by The Wall. The International Court of Justice in The Hague has deemed The Wall is illegal and it must fall.

“Financed with U.S. aid at a cost of $1.5 million per mile, the Israeli wall prevents residents from receiving health care and emergency medical services. In other areas, the barrier separates farmers from their olive groves which have been their families’ sole livelihood for generations.” [5]

During my five trips to Israel Palestine, I went to Walid’s birthplace; Beit Sahour, a suburb of Bethlehem. I met 8 of his relatives who fed me, gave me a bed and then accompanied me for two days through the Dheisheh refugee camp, which is 100% Muslim and a five minute taxi ride from the Church of The Nativity in The Little Town of Bethlehem: Occupied Territory. Over half of the 11,000 resident refugees of Dheisheh are children under 18 and they exist on less than one square kilometer of the ‘Holy’ Land. I interviewed old men, dozens of teenagers and mothers, but I did not meet any fundamentalist terrorists.

Back to the 2008 Walid Shoebat Show:

Walid’s oratory style is part pep talk and part exhortation with a Hitler-eske intensity and his show is slickly produced to incite the masses.

Walid spewed that, “I love FOX News, but not Geraldo Rivera! His biggest mistake wasn’t drawing the line in the sand in Iraq; it is his support of a Palestinian state.”

The audience roared with laughter and exuberant applause, which was repeated as Walid preached, “Islam is a revolutionary faith out to destroy all governments. Muslim nations have a command from Allah to rule the world. Islam is a constitutional form of government. When you have a senator take the oath of office on the Koran he is pledging to uphold Sharia law and not the Constitution.”

The next morning, I phoned Walid’s relative Kamal Younis the good news that his name was mentioned from the King Center stage and filled him in that his brother Jawad is another supposed terrorist.

Kamal laughed, “Walid is a master of spin! He takes one iota of truth and creates a fiction! It is true my brother is an attorney. It is true that he lost his left hand and some fingers from his right; it was in 1954 and I think my brother was in the sixth grade. Jawad and a half dozen of his friends were out playing under the olive trees in Beit Sahour. They found a grenade left over from the ’48 war, but they didn’t know what it was. Jawad brought it home and got a hammer. He began banging on the grenade hoping to open it up but it exploded! The explosion killed one of the children and we almost lost Jawad too. Today my brother is a well-respected attorney in Amman, Jordan. We all know that King Hussein does what ever the CIA wants, so it would be impossible for Jawad to defend terrorists.

“Walid’s father is no fundamentalist. I have known his father since we were young men, we went to college together. Walid’s father was not too bright and was always at the bottom of the class. In fact, both his parents have something wrong upstairs. Walid’s father is a simpleton, he is a simple man but also an honest and peaceful man. He is religious in that he would pray five times a day, but not a fundamentalist at all. None of Walid’s relatives are extremists, only Walid is. It’s apparent Walid is involved in a smear campaign with fundamental Christian Zionists to convince Jews and Christians that Islam is out to get them.”

I also told Kamal that although the after show crowd around the table of hundred dollar video sets at the “WAKE UP AMERICA! Confessions of 3 X-Terrorists” show, was three people deep, I made my way through to one of the merchants and handed him my WeAreWideAwake.org business card with phone number and asked him to deliver it to Walid as coming from the ‘stupid’ reporter who had been in the audience and would love to interview him.

I am still waiting.

  1. Preview EX Terrorist Rakes in Homeland Security Bucks
  2. www.truthdig.com/report/item/20080211_the_war_against_tolerance
  3. www.project-restoration.org
  4. www.wearewideawake.org
  5. Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Page 43, Jan/Feb. 2007


Eileen Fleming is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

Eileen Fleming, Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org
A Feature Correspondent for Arabisto.com
Author of “Keep Hope Alive” and “Memoirs of a Nice Irish American ‘Girl’s’ Life in Occupied Territory”
Producer “30 Minutes with Vanunu” and “13 Minutes with Vanunu”

The Religious Right unites with Religious Renegades, Part 3

July 1, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

There’s an old saying, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions,” meaning that people who believe they are doing good often end up doing evil.  It’s the law of unintended consequences.  Unfortunately this is what has happened to some–not all–religious conservative organizations.   I know of altruistic Christian activists, both conservative and liberal, who believe they are doing God’s work, but in their effort to “right wrongs” they have utterly failed to honor God’s command to “earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. “ (Jude 1:3)

What does Jude mean?  Simply that true followers of Jesus Christ are first and foremost to share Christ with the lost.   Yet many so-called Christians are not evangelizing the lost for fear of being perceived as trying to “push their religion on others.”  They detest being thought of as intolerant, thus they remain silent.  News flash:  The Gospel of Jesus Christ always has been and always will be offensive to those who are lost!  It’s a whole lot easier to say “Jesus loves you” than “take up your cross and follow Him.”

Some prominent Christian Right (CR) leaders that head up ginormous organizations are so busy fighting the culture war that they’ve forgotten what’s most important — Truth!  Jesus said: “Thy Word is truth!” (John 17:17)

The CR (unrepentantly) unites with pretty much anyone who is likeminded politically. Sadly this includes a slew of false teachers, cultists, and Social Justice Christians (SJC) a.k.a. Progressive Evangelicals.  SJCs are chiefly liberals whose main goal is to dismantle historical, orthodox Christianity and usher in a “new kind of Christianity.”  In the name of social justice, SJC leaders stealthly steer undiscerning believers into a left-wing collectivized utopia!

SJC is beyond of the scope of this article so I’ll move on.

PRAGMATISM = COMPROMISE

Many in the CR leadership are uniting with evil doers (God’s word, not mine). They have climbed aboard the SS Pragmatism and are proceeding full speed ahead into shark infested waters. Uniting with evil doers serves two specific purposes.   It helps get the message out and provides an additional source of revenue.  And let’s face it.  When the money stops rolling in organizations are forced to close their doors.  So these additional funds, regardless of the source, keep the message alive and the group afloat.

Before I move to my next point I need to stress that it is my belief that Christians should try to influence public policy.  How?  By casting their vote, serving in local government, forming and joining special interest groups, writing letters to the Editor, giving financial support, and participating in lawful demonstrations. Anti-abortion activists are a good example of Christians trying to influence public policy.  Pro-lifers have formed groups comprised mostly of Christians that engage in politics because it is the only means they have to end abortion.  If Roe v. Wade is overturned, it will happen because of the dogged determination of political action groups.

For obvious reasons Christians should never relinquish control of the government to godless secular humanists and “grievous wolves” (Acts 20:29)!  On the other hand, Christ never commanded His followers to build a theocracy!

Isn’t the NAR’s attempting to do this?

A SUBTLE SHIFT

P. J. Miller urges visitors to Sola Dei Gloria to read an essay by Rachel Tabachnic titled Lions In the Pews. “This is an extremely interesting article,” says Miller, “one I would suggest reading in its entirety. You may not agree with all of it, (the author touches on the rapture and a few other points which many believers differ over, theologically) but sitting that aside, the information concerning the subtle shift many Churches are making into Dominionist/Dominionism theology is excellent reading for those interested in the goals these people have set and are pursuing: That includes the NAR…”  (Bold added by P. J.)

The following is an excerpt from Tabachnic’s article with bold by P. J.:

But this strand has emerged from Pentecostal and Charismatic backgrounds and has been nearly invisible to both the mainstream press and progressive writers. Like other Dominionists the New Apostolics are culture warriors and have specific stated goals for overtaking all spheres of American society and government as seen in the video above.

Also, like other dominionist groups they actually invest much of their efforts in fighting the traditional institutionalized church.

However, they differ from most other Dominionist groups in their embrace of the outpouring of gifts of the holy spirit, or manifestations, like being slain in the spirit, Holy Laughter, and other states of altered consciousness that are a part of their very experiential worship style.

The New Apostolic Reformation is also much more focused on the expulsion of demons as the process for healing, social reform, or even raising people from the dead.  They have a unique and extensive lingo that is dedicated to the description of the expulsion of territorial demons including terms like ground level spiritual warfare, occult level spiritual warfare, and strategic level spiritual warfare.

While Pentecostal churches have always celebrated a restoration of the church, this has been tempered with Rapture theology.   As churches embrace this Apostolic revolution they are moving away from the traditions of Assemblies of God and other denominations and  are adopting a  view of the end time that includes the triumph and perfection of the church as opposed to escaping  in the Rapture from an evil world descending into the apocalypse.

They see the imminent end times as a time of great glory for the restored true  Apostolic church greater than the one of New Testament times, and a time when the foot soldiers of this church will be imparted with supernatural powers.

This outpouring of powers will allow them to crush evil with a “rod of iron” and deliver a purified church to Jesus when he returns.

Seeing as pro-family leaders Tony PerkinsDon WildmonJanet Porter and Mat Staver have united with the NAR one can’t help but wonder if they share their end times beliefs.  It’s a legitimate question to ask.

PENTECOSTAL MOVEMENT

Methodist holiness preacher Charles Parham is considered the founder of modern Pentecostalism. Parham broke with the Methodist church and started his own ministry. In 1901Agnes Ozman began to speak in “tongues” when hands were laid on her. Parham believed that speaking in tongues was both a sign of Spirit baptism and also the signal of the end of the age. Parham also linked the Baptism of the Holy Spirit with a latter-day Pentecost.

“What began on a corner at the turn of the twentieth century is now barreling down Main Street. What was once known as thePentecostal movement has now splintered into numerous diverse, yet overlapping movements: PentecostalCharismaticVineyard,Word-Faith, and Holy Laughter.” (1)

Add to the list Latter Rain Restorationism/ International House of Prayer (IHOP)/Third Wave/Deliverance/ Soaking in the Spirit/ and the aforementioned Dominionists/ Seven Mountains/Elijah Revolution/Kingdom Now/Joel’s Army/Manifest Sons of God and most recently the NAR.  I’ve only scratched the surface!

Bud Press of Christian Research Service lamented:

The Prophetic Movement is a dark, evil wasteland teeming with false apostles, false prophets, hyper-heretics, false healers, and greedy, money-hungry con men and women, all of whom are overshadowed by Satan and his demonic forces.

There’s plenty of blame to go around for the unholy mess the Church has become.   Liberals, liars, and loons have infiltrated her.  To paraphrase my pastor’s teaching (from my notes), believers have been misled by well-spoken, self-promoting, self-serving, charismatic leaders who emphasize power gifts but put little emphasis on preaching the gospel.   These men and women think nothing of exploiting God’s people for their own gain.

Jesus gave us fair warning:

Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. (Mat 7:15-17)

While we’re on the subject of ravening wolves, some false teachers deny the divinity of Jesus Christ…

There was no bodily resurrection…

The Bible was written by men, not by Divine inspiration.   It’s a book of myths and fables, full of contradictions, open to interpretation, holds hidden meanings that only the “enlightened” can know…

Seriously?

Wolves teach that God loves, doesn’t judge, so all humans go to heaven.

Triniterianism is out…

No vicarious Atonement…

The virgin birth?  Don’t make me laugh!…

As for sodomy? No sin there!…

Fornication and cohabitation? What’s the big deal?…

Abortion?  It’s my choice!…

Wait a minute!  A Christian can choose to murder a baby?

Really?

I could go on, but hopefully the point is made. The postmodern Church will only tolerate a small “g” god who simply rolls his/her eyes at sin and say, “Boys will be boys.”

Over 20 years ago the late Dr. Walter Martin took on liberalism in the Church:

Let me tell you something that I have learned; I know the liberals. I know them well; I was one of them. And they are the most dangerous, insidious, and all-pervading cult that’s loose in the United States right at this moment…

And this theological flea infestation is ruining the lifeblood of the Church, which is evangelism. And, you think these are very strong statements; I intend to back them up in—if necessary—excruciating details. For any person who does not know that today in the United States, and in denominational structures world-around, we are in an accelerating apostasy does not know—I repeat—does not know what’s going on…

We have, for more than one hundred years, been under sustained attack in the United States; in our theological seminaries, church related schools, and our churches. A sustained attack by people, who have the form of godliness, and work within the structure of the Church and have—wherever they have been permitted the opportunity—diluted the Gospel and destroyed the Faith.

They occupy today the chairs in our major theological seminaries; the rulership of our major denominational structures—they maintain boldly and boastfully—“This[is] the Church!” But it’s not the Church if it denies the power of the Gospel… (2)

LYING SIGNS & WONDERS

The NAR travels the globe allegedly performing miraculous healings, raising the dead back to life and breaking down “demonic strongholds.”  They have visions as clear as a movie screen… give future prophecies…experience visitations from Jesus, angels, and Aimee Simple McPherson.  As an extra added bonus they get “revelation knowledge” directly from God and have the unmitigated arrogance to say, “The Spirit of God spoke to me…” but there’s no way to verify whose voice they hear!  According to Isaiah 8:20, “[I]f they speak not according to this word it is because there is no light in them.”

With all the powers these wolves possess, I presume some of them can walk on water.

WE’RE STILL WAITING, RICK

In 1988 “super-prophet” Rick Joyner shared his “vision” concerning the coming “revolution” in the Church:

“What is about to come upon the earth is not just a revival, or another awakening; it is a veritable revolution. The vision was given in order to begin to awaken those who are destined to radically change the course, and even the very definition of Christianity. The dismantling of organizations and disbanding of some works will be a positive and exhilarating experience for the Lord’s faithful servants. A great company of prophets, teachers, pastors and apostles will be raised up with the spirit of Phineas; it will be said of the apostles soon to be anointed that they have turned an upside down world right side up. Nations will tremble at the mention of their name.” (3)

Have I missed something?  I can’t think of a single nation that trembles at the name of Rick Joyner or the other so-called apostles and prophets.  Joyner’s alleged prophecy came to him over two decades ago. He claimed that the “soon to be” anointed would turn an upside world right side up. Well, what’s the hold up? With the way things are going in this country, I’m eager for the “great company” to turn things right side up, aren’t you?

A CALL TO DISCERNMENT

Admittedly there are some CR leaders that want to build a theocracy as do Dominionists, but many in the CR do not.  The CR leadership unfamiliar with the NAR’s global goals is leading those involved in fighting the culture war into shark infested waters.  They must “take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them (evil men).” (Deut. 12:30)  In other words, listen up — and abandon ship!

For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. (2 Cor. 11:13, 14)

Part 1
Part 2

FOOTNOTES:

[1] The History of the Charismatic Movement–By Gary E. Gilley

[2] Walter Martin, The Cult of Liberalism, CD Rom—Obtained from Apprising Ministries

[3] Rick Joyner. Restoration, May/June 1988, “The Harvest”

RECOMMENDED READING

For a more thorough understanding of the NAR, go to “Recommended Reading” in Part 1 & Part 2

The Prophet Movement: An Evil and Adulterous Generation—Christian Research Service website

Alexander Campbell Looks Beyond the Dominionists’ Seven Mountains–By David Brumley

Apostles and Prophets and the Foundation of the Church: Biblical Exegesis that Proves that Only the New Testament Apostles are Authoritative—By Critical Issues Commentary

Former IHOP Member Explains Why IHOP (International House of Prayer) Is A Cult— Sola Sisters website, posted by Christine Pack

VIEW VIDEOS:

The Religious Right’s Modern Day Spartan Army—Tony Perkins of FRC talks with NAR “Apostle” Rick Joyner

America Needs Godly Leaders–Tony Perkins of FRC talks with Word of Faith preacher James Robison

Mat Staver invites you to TheCall Sacramento—Mat Staver, President of Liberty Council

LISTEN TO INTEVIEWS:

Ingrid Schlueter’s interview with Sarah Leslie of Discernment Ministries

Jan Markell’s interview with Mike Oppenheimer of Let Us Reason Ministries


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

The Religious Right unites with Religious Renegades, Part 2

June 19, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

My purpose for writing this article is not to discredit, scold or embarrass the Christian Right (CR) for their part in helping to advance the bizarre beliefs of a renegade movement known as the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR).   My words are intended to be loving but firm. (Eph 4:15)   I believe the CR’s intentions are good and that they are honorable men and women who believe they are faithfully serving our Lord.  What they fail to understand is that the NAR is a Christian sect!

So with this in mind I am calling for spiritual discernment from CR leaders.  Prominent Christians are not exempt from doing as the Bible instructs: “Prove [test] all things; hold fast to that which is good [true].”  (1 Thes 5:21)  My hope is that CR leaders will scrutinize NAR’s theology and doctrines by the light of God’s Word.  If they will do this, what they will discover is that the NAR’s message has little to do with the true Gospel of Jesus Christ – and this should be cause for alarm.

CHRISTIANITY 101

God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high: Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.

(Heb 1:1-4)

The words the Son of God spoke while He was among us are found in the pages of the Bible.  The Holy Spirit inspired the writers of the four Gospels to correctly record what they heard from the lips of Jesus.  One of the essential doctrines of Christianity—a non-negotiable– is the inerrancy of Scripture.  In other words, everything in the Bible is true, thus God’s people must believe what the scriptures say.  This is Christianity 101, my friends.

Nowhere in Scripture does it teach that we can expect “new revelation” from God.  Those who teach this are in error.  Moreover, our feelings and experiences are not to be trusted.  I mean, seriously.  Can you really trust your emotions?

Many Christians, especially Charismatic Christians, are open to receiving a “prophetic word from the Lord” through a so-called prophet.  Some have even bought into the notion that they actually hear God speaking to them in a sort of whisper.  Apologist Greg Koukl offers this warning:

This teaching that God will whisper in your ear all kind of particulars that pertain to you and His will for your life is very appealing to Christians. Even though when you look at the Scriptures, the specialized directions are rare. They are unusual. They are usually unsought. And they are always crystal clear. None of this “I think the Lord is telling me” business. People are still gravitating to the suggestion that we can develop a sixth sense that can tie us into a hotline to God so that we can have certitude about the things of life and the decisions we ought to make. Why is this appealing? Because it’s easy. (1)

It is vitally important that we understand that God has chosen to speak to us through His Word:

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness (2 Tim 3:16-17).

The Bible makes it clear that God’s people are to live righteous lives.  The Bible says thou shalt not lie, cheat, steal, have sex outside of marriage, laze around, dress like a slut, get occult tattoos, drink like a fish, view pornography, and so on and so forth.  Living righteously means not being involved in immoral behavior.  (I find it ironic that Christians knowingly participate in all sorts of activities that displease God, yet they sit around fretting over whether or not it’s God’s will for them to take that job offer, or marry Harry, or go on a mission trip to Timbuktu.)

Simply because someone believes they hear God whisper things that pertain to them—or His will for them–does not mean the “voice” is God’s.  (Read Greg Koukl’s article Does God Whisper?)

Christians must be careful of such things as voices, visions, dreams, revelations, strong impressions, angel visitations and drawing on their experiences.  None of these things should be given equal or greater authority than what is contained in Scripture.  The Bible is the believer’s final authority.  Everything we need to know has already been written.  “If we do not base our understanding of Christ on the Word of God,” says Justin Edwards, “then all we are left with are opinions based on the figment of our imagination, the consequences of which are fatally hazardous to the soul.”

SEVEN MOUNTAINS TO CONQUER?

Conquering The Seven Mountains for Christ is the brainchild of the Dominionist movement.  Over the years Dominionists have gone by many names including Latter Rain/Kingdom Now /Joel’s Army/Manifest Sons of God and most recently the NAR.  The so-called Apostles and Prophets have a plan to aggressively “retake the reins of our country” for Christ.  Dominionist Johnny Enlow wrote The Seven Mountain Prophecy where he shares his expertise on the subject.  Enlow proclaims:

You are called to impact your culture!  The coming Elijah Revolution will affect the entire world and will prepare the way of the Lord before His return.

What is the Elijah Revolution?  ER’s website explains:

Elijah Revolution is a new ministry working in partnership with TheCall, Luke18 Project, and IHOP–KC, launching teen conferences and high school campus initiatives, calling teenagers to a life of wholehearted devotion to Jesus and radical commitment to God, in the spirit of a Nazirite.

Enlow continues:

There are seven nations “greater and mightier than we” – the Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. These nations correspond to seven “mountains” of global society – Media, Government, Education, Economy, Religion, Celebration/Arts, and Family. These culture-shaping areas of influence over society are the keys to taking a nation for the kingdom of God.

This is hogwash.

The purpose of Enlow’s book is to:

help each individual determine his or her specific assignment in this mission; and then to offer insight into the nature of the battles involved in this spiritual confrontation.

Enlow then adds:

With divine power and favor, revolutionaries will take these mountains for Christ!

Revolutionaries?  Does he mean Christian young people must stand together and organize a far-left type revolution to take mountains for Christ? Yes, this is exactly what Enlow is purporting.

I don’t have a problem with Christians standing together to try to shape the culture using biblical morality as a guideline.  Nor do I have a problem with Christians becoming social activists, especially when it comes to protecting the unborn and traditional marriage. But here’s what I do have a problem with.  It is a fact that the NAR is awash in heresy — and this is easily proven – and yet these men and women, who teach doctrines of demons, are being taken seriously by the CR.

Something else I find troubling is that many professing Christians no longer share the Gospel of Jesus Christ – ever!  Christians of all people should know that real change will not come until hearts and minds are changed.  Why?  Because the unregenerate (unsaved) man is dead in his sins.   In other words, the unsaved man is spiritually dead.  (Eph 2:1) When he accepts Christ, he is “born again” or regenerate.  Thereafter he will see things through a spiritual lens.  In time his worldview will change.  Which leads to this question: Why are Christians not sharing the good news?

Listen to what Jesus commanded His followers to do:

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. (Mat. 28:19-20)

This is a far cry from what the NAR is doing.  They think God has given Christians a mandate to stem the tide of evil in this world.  In order to accomplish this they must take the Seven Mountains of influence.  These mountains of influence are:

(1) Arts and Entertainment; (2) Business/Economy; (3) Education; (4) Family; (5) Government; (6) Media; (7) Religion.

They believe 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.  And this is in the Bible?

One disgruntled left-wing blogger wrote:

I’ve been writing a lot about the steadily increasing influence that 7 Mountains/Dominion theology has been having on the Religious Right recently, though mostly as it has relates to Janet Porter.

But it is important to note that Porter is not alone in embracing this theology and partnering with activists who espouse it.  For instance, Lou Engle played a central role in last year’s Family Research Council “prayercast” against health care reform and has developed ties to many other Religious Right leaders as well. Others, like Cindy Jacobs of Generals International, have likewise been making similar connections and several of these groups have also become members of the right-wing supergroup known as the Freedom Federation.

And even Newt Gingrich is cultivating his own ties to 7 Mountains advocates.  Last year, Gingrich appeared alongside Engle at a “Rediscovering God In America” conference where Engle laid hands upon Gingrich and prayed for God’s protection for him. Not long thereafter, Gingrich formed a group called Renewing American Leadership and tapped Engle-associate and Prop 8 leader Jim Garlow to serve as Chairman of the organization. (2)

So what is going on here?  It is obvious—even to the far-left–that the CR has united with the NAR.  If this is untrue then why, for example, is the American Family Association (AFA) part of the leadership group promoting Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s “apolitical prayer meeting” The Response: August 6 1011?  Is AFA not aware that the group includes several NAR leaders?  Look at the list! In the leadership are such notables as:

Luis & Jill Cataldo—Mike Bickle’s International House of Prayer (IHOP)

Randy & Kelly Bohlander—IHOP &Lou Engle’s The Call

Dave Sliker—The Call & The Elijah Revolution

Doug Stringer—NAR Apostle

I can only assume Gov. Perry’s heart is in the right place and his purpose for this event is honorable, but without question the aim of many of those in leadership is to advance the NAR’s Seven Mountain agenda to take over society and government for Christ.

Sarah Leslie of Discernment Ministries has written extensively on the NAR.  In an email to me Sarah explained the depths of the NAR leader’s depravity:

They believe that the modern-day apostles are gifted with the same gifts as the New Testament era Apostles (with a capital “A”). We know from Scripture that the first Apostles in the New Testament era were given a unique job by Christ Himself, which was to write the books that we have in the Canon of Scripture. These 12 men gave us the Foundation (Rev. 21:14) of the DOCTRINE of the Gospel of Salvation. It was the APOSTLE’S DOCTRINE which built the church.

The NAR believes that the modern-day apostles are being given new words (both rhema and logos) from God and are able to re-write that doctrine with “new understandings.”  We have many articles posted about this on Herescope, including some key quotes from C. Peter Wagner and Hector Torres.

The NAR teaches the heresy that the modern-day apostles are the “foundation” of the church in a reverse hierarchical pyramid structure where they will rule the world (the 7 mountains) from a top-down networking structure. Their rule is said to be absolute and requires obedience from their downline.  See the series that we ran on Herescope, for example. (3)

I’ll end part 2 with a quote from 2 Thes. 2:13-15:

But we are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.

Stay tuned for part 3

Read part 1

FOOTNOTES

[1] Hearing God’s Voice—By Gregory Koukl

[2] The Dominionist Agenda Driving Gingrich’s New Organization—RightWingWatch.com

[3] The quote was taken from an email sent to me by Sarah Leslie, used by permission.

RECOMMENDED READING:

New Apostolic Reformation articles

The Death of Truth—By Greg Koukl

My 7 years working for the Elijah List—By KevinKleint

VIEW:

Lou Engle–Our Nazerite call

Rick Joyner – meeting with congressman

Morningstar Ministries and the End-Time Army– they are referring to Joel’s Army/Joshua Generation, and they are targeting our children!


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

The Religious Right uniting with Religious Renegades, Part 1

May 21, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Some Religious Right leaders have joined forces with movers and shakers, literally speaking, of the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR).  They have been warned about this “New Breed” of Christian and their global kingdom agenda and have chosen to disregard the warnings.   This article will put to rest the notion that the NAR’s esoteric doctrines fall within the pale of orthodox Christianity. The hope of course is that the Religious or Christian Right will wake up and smell the coffee and sever all ties with these renegades.

What’s astounding is that conservative Christian leaders, many of whom are biblically literate, fail to recognize blatant false teaching. For instance, some of them assume John Hagee, senior pastor of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas, is an orthodox preacher when Hagee promotes unbiblical word-faith teaching!

But this is not about John Hagee’s promotion of the doctrine of positive confession.  This is about the unorthodox teaching and the sinister plans of the NAR.  The reason I’m sounding the alarm is that more and more Christians are getting caught up in this cult.

False teachers have made their mark on the Church by marketing a user-friendly “relevant” Christianity that is a whole lot more palatable to the unchurched “seeker” than the Christianity of the Reformers.  Admittedly, even to the discerning believer truth laced with false teaching is as tough to detect as a few drops of arsenic in a tall glass of water.

Some apostates are so sly that the average Christian in the pew is defenseless against them.  But, thankfully, not everyone is taken in by them.  When false teaching comes into churches from lose canons who depart from sound doctrine (Titus 2:1) some folks recognize it and alert others.   In many instances those who speak up and address their concerns are ignored, marginalized, or accused of being divisive.  The person who will not back down is often given the boot!

THE NEW APOSTOLIC REFORMATION

I have written about NAR previously.  I pointed out that,

leaders in the New Apostolic Reformation, a heretical movement that sprang from the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements, claim that they hear directly from God, Jesus and angels. They even encourage their followers to contact angels despite the fact that Scripture expressly forbids contacting the spirit world because Satan and his demons can appear as an “angel of light” to deceive people. (2 Cor 11:14) Like the apostles who established the early church, these “restored apostles and prophets” believe they are called by God to lay the foundation and government for the new earthly Kingdom. Moreover, they believe that soon they will take dominion over government and dominate the world politically and spiritually. (I’ll cover Dominionism in Part 2.)

It has become necessary to report on the NAR again because it is gaining credibility with evangelicals as well as the conservative media, entertainers, politicians and the Tea Party movement.

Last year self-professed NAR prophet Cindy Jacobs’ and General’s International held the May Day 2010: A Cry To God For A Nation In Distress at the foot of the Lincoln Memorial where “local representatives shared about their state’s Christian heritage and lifted up prayers for their state and the United States. National leaders offered up prayers of repentance for seven main issues: family, the church, education, arts and entertainment, business, government and the media.” Janet Porter of Faith2Action had an active role in organizing the gathering.  In attendance were  such notables as James Dobson, Tony Perkins, Wendy Wright, Jerry Newcombe, Peter LaBarbera,  David Barton, Mathew Staver, Robert Knight, Alan Keyes, to name a few.  Also in attendance were several NAR leaders including C. Peter Wagner, Chuck Pierce, Dutch Sheets, Lance Wallnau and Rick Joyner.

In April 2010 conservative Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA hosted The Awakening 2010 conference sponsored by the Freedom Federation. They define themselves as “a group of the nation’s largest multiracial, multiethnic and multigenerational faith-based and policy organizations representing more than 30 million Americans united by core values. The group’s mission is to bring together community leaders committed to mobilizing the Judeo-Christian worldview to preserve freedom and promote justice.”

One of the speakers at the event was Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.  Other influential leaders include Newt Gingrich, Gary Bauer, Tony Perkins, Wendy Wright, Richard Land, Andrea Lafferty, Kelly Shackelford, Ken Blackwell, Mat Staver, Rick Scarborough, and NAR Apostles Cindy Jacobs, Lou Engle, Harry Jackson and Samuel Rodriguez.

What is wrong with this picture?  People from the NAR who are in the grip of evil were invited to participate in both of these events. One example is Cindy Jacobs.  Jacobs is the NAR’s “lead U.S. National Apostle.”  Cindy is supposedly a modern day prophet.  But I beg to differ.  This woman has uttered more false prophecies than Walgreen’s has pills, proving beyond a reasonable doubt that she is no more a prophet of God than Lady Gaga!  The truth is, Cindy Jacobs is a false prophet.

The May 2010 edition of Herescope reported:

Forays by NAR Apostles into the political scene in America have been until recently sparse. But Lou Engle…who has his own ministry to youth called “The Call,” has been politically active in pro-life and homosexual issues.  Some months ago he was able to pray for Gingrich and Huckabee with the laying on of apostolic hands.  But very recently the political stars seem to have come suddenly into alignment.

American political landscape has suddenly changed. A tumult is appearing in the land with the passage of health care reform. The Christian Right, with its years of courting political influence, is now poised to merge with the new Tea Party Movement. In times of crisis, natural or caused, things seem to happen faster and opportunities, that would take years, seem to happen in months. There is the scent of rebellion in the air.

Before I move on, I should point out that there is nothing wrong with Christians gathering together to stand up for biblical principles and fight the forces of wickedness that are destroying America.  And there’s certainly nothing wrong with praying for our country and for the men and women in the armed forces who put their lives on the line so that we can live free.  To say that our nation and our soldiers are in dire need of prayer is an understatement.  Even though the Christian Right (CR) often shares a stage with controversial groups/persons it does not mean that they necessarily share their views; what it does mean however is that when controversial groups/persons are invited to participate in a CR event it appears that they endorse these groups/persons.  It grieves me to say this—and I’ll get a lot of flak for it–but many professing Christians seem to have little or no problem partnering with false teachers and cultists, perhaps because these groups/persons are useful in furthering their political causes.

As a conservative Christian myself, I find partnering with the wicked unacceptable for the reasons that: (1) God opposes the wicked; (2) The wicked should not be given a platform — especially when God’s people provide that platform!

But that’s just me.

Ever notice how the CR complains about RINOs (Republican in name only) hijacking the Republican Party?  Former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani is considered a RINO because he’s fiscally conservative and socially liberal.  So when he ran for President in 2008 he couldn’t muster the support of socially conservative evangelicals because they get all hot under the collar when liberals, who call themselves moderates, refuse to adhere to the official Republican platform on important issues such as abortion, homosexuality and same-sex “marriage.”  Yet the CR has no problem joining forces with CINOs (Christians in name only) that pervert sacred Scripture!

Listen to what Jesus said about false prophets:

Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves (Mat. 7:15).

And,

For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if [it were] possible, even the elect (Mark 13:22).

MOVIN’ ON UP

The NAR a.k.a. Latter Rain/Kingdom Now/Dominionist/Joel’s Army/Manifest Sons of God—no doubt I’ve left some names out–has been on the rise for over six decades.  As you can see the name has been changed umpteen times so that unsuspecting Christians will swallow the hype that there’s a “New Wave” or a “Paradigm Shift” taking place in Christendom.  They claim they’re receivingnew revelation from God and are ushering in “a reformation greater in scale than the reformation of the 1500′s.”  They also claim that a new group of believers will rise up and be given the power to perform miraculous signs and wonders, even greater than the miracles of Jesus and the Apostles – and they believe they have the power to cast out demons, heal the sick, raise the dead and bring multitudes into the Kingdom of God.

The founder of this sect is C. Peter Wagner from Fuller Theological Seminary.  Wagner is one of the leading authorities on the Church Growth movement and has been studying the field of church growth for close to 40 years.  (Rick Warren wrote his doctoral dissertation at Fuller Seminary on Wagner’s church growth ideas and was mentored by Wagner.)   C. Peter Wagner is the “presiding apostle” in the International Coalition of Apostles.

Orrel Steinkamp of Discernment-Ministries believes Wagner is, attempting to will into existence [the] ‘New Apostolic Reformation.’  He tells us in a book he has edited called ‘The New Apostolic Churches’ of the struggle he had with naming his new reformation. [3]

As I pointed out earlier, what the NAR is putting out there is not new.  In fact, Bill Hamon of Christian International has been teaching it for decades.  Hamon runs a school to train people to become modern day “Apostles” and “Prophets.”  In his view the church is in her third and final Reformation and Christ can’t return to earth until the Church purifies itself.

Steinkamp wonders:

Can it be argued that this ‘New reformation’ is something that God has just recently dropped new from heaven like the baby Superman from Krypton? I suggest that there is nothing new here at all and for anyone willing to do the study they will find it a mere cutting edge version of something at least 100 years old. G. Raymond Carlson, former General Superintendent of the AOG [USA], had this to say regarding the new apostles and prophets:

‘I saw it in the New Order of the Latter Rain in the late 40′s and early 50′s. Before that, it made its presence felt in the early days of the century among early Pentecostals.’

Steinkamp continues:

To Latter Rain teachers it seemed obvious that if there was to be a repeated apostolic Pentecost then apostles and prophets must be restored as well. These teachers then devised a historical scheme of restoration. Church history was understood as a succession of recoveries of lost or neglected truths. Luther recovered justification by faith, Baptists believers’ baptism, Wesley holiness, A.B. Simpson healing and the early Pentecostal pioneers the gifts of the Spirit. The recovery process was now extended further. The end time body of Christ must go on to maturity and restore the apostles and prophets and these restored ministries must lead the church to a new and final dimension of power and authority not only bringing in the final harvest but establishing the Kingdom of God upon the earth. [4]

Are we to establish a Kingdom of God upon earth?  Listen to what Jesus says:

My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence. (John 18:36).

The NAR has one thing right.  The ministry of the apostles continues today:

Not in the person of anyone claiming to be an apostle, but in the New Testament.  Every time the Word of God in the New Testament is read and proclaimed, the apostolic ministry and office fulfills its role. The apostles of the first century live on today, in the Church, through the Word God has given us through them. [5]

NOTES:

1. The History of the Charismatic Movement–By Gary E. Gilley

2. Rick Joyner. Restoration, May/June 1988, “The Harvest”

3. The New Apostolic Reformation –By Orrel Steinkamp, D. Min

4. Ibid

5. Quote from Human Capital Systems and Church Performance by Lynn D. Leslie, Sarah H. Leslie and Susan J. Conway

RECOMMENDED READING

The Coalescing of the Christian Right with Apostolic Dominionism–By Orrel Steinkamp

Dominionism and the Rise of Christian Imperialism–By Sarah Leslie

NAR Prophetess’s Inflammatory Comments on the Egypt Crisis–Herescope blog
The ‘Great Wealth Transfer’ — 100 Percent Returns!–By Spirit of Error

Links to articles that cover the New Apostolic Reformation


Marsha West is a regular columnist for Veracity Voice

She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

Education leads to Compassion, Compassion leads to Change

January 30, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

An Interview with Richard Forer and the Arab Awakening…

Richard ForerMazin B. Qumsiyeh, was born in 1957 in Beit Sahour, a suburb of Bethlehem. He became a Professor of Genetics and taught at Yale University School of Medicine and Duke University. He is currently teaching at Birzeit Universities in occupied Palestine and his main interests are media activism and public education, human rights and international law. In a 30 January 2011, email he wrote:

“Arabs everywhere (yes even here in occupied Palestine) are talking about a transformation and about revolution.  But all such transformations carry pain. Over 200 Egyptians were killed, thousands injured, and there is much destruction. Yet in a nation of 85 million people this is still a relatively peaceful transformation…I know most politicians like to feel 100% safe (mostly for their position of power) and are afraid of any change. But I wish they would realize that daring politicians make the history books and those who hang around trying to protect their seats will be forgotten. Cowardice is never a virtue…Clearly, the era of ignoring the masses is gone.”

Richard Forer, was born in New Jersey in 1948 and attended Sunday school at his reform synagogue from the ages of five through fourteen. In 2006, Forer zealously supported of Israel’s invasion of Lebanon. At about the same time, he became a member of AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee), the most powerful pro-Israel lobbying organization in the U.S. When a Jewish friend challenged him on the ‘facts’ he used to justify his support for the invasion, he began an intensive study of the history of Israel Palestine. That led to a crisis of identity as he discovered that his attachment to the State of Israel had blinded him to the heart of Judaism and to the universal truth that lies beyond all labels and beliefs: there is no exclusive or separate self. We are all connected.

Regarding Islam, Richard said, “Many who’ve been influenced into forming enemy images of Islam will find the fact that all but one of the Koran’s 114 chapters mentions compassion infuriatin­g because their identities require an attachment to a belief that Islam is evil. In my book, Breakthrou­gh: Transformi­ng Fear into Compassion – A New Perspectiv­e on the Israel-Pal­estine Conflict I describe my awakening to True Compassion­.

“Briefly, True Compassion only arises when one gives up his/her core identity. Once that relinquish­ment occurs the world is no longer seen as a realm of Us against Them. That is because the attachment to a separate/i­ndividual identity requires the creation of the ‘other.’

“The other is a person, society, religion, idea that does not fit within the boundaries of how an individual­, consciousl­y and unconsciou­sly, defines his/her identity. Thus, the other is a threat to the ‘reality’ of one’s self-image or identity. Additional­ly, I assert that Clarity always accompanie­s True Compassion­. True Compassion­, unbounded by labels or definition­s and the influence exerted upon one’s belief structure by a presumed identity, can see from a 360 degree perspectiv­e and, therefore, understand or be willing to understand all points of view. Thus, I can also say that although I find the brutal violence carried out by extremists abhorrent I understand that deep in their hearts even these extremists want the same things we all want – self-deter­mination, freedom and peace.”

Regarding particular Christians, Richard wrote: “Christians who ignore the suffering of human beings by using the same justification as the more fundamentalist of Jews – that ‘God gave the land to the Jewish [or chosen] people’– need to take a closer look at the teachings of Christ. Did Christ single out some for his blessing while ostracizing others? Did he teach hatred or did he teach love and compassion? And they need to look more deeply into their own hearts. Then they will discover that in denying the humanity of some they deny their own humanity…Separative thinking is never divinely inspired. It is always narcissistically inspired; it is, in fact, the very antithesis of the unifying and all-encompassing nature of the divine.” [1]

Regarding the fundamentalist fire and brimstone preacher, John Hagee and his Christians United for Israel/CUFI cult, Richard said:

“Hagee raises millions of dollars annually for Israel’s settlement enterprise on Palestinian land. He believes that the boundaries of Israel are set by God, that Judea and Samaria, otherwise known as the West Bank, are within these God-given boundaries and that these lands must be inhabited by Jews. This, of course, would require the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians. One can argue that this viewpoint obstructs the chances for peace but it certainly doesn’t qualify as anti-Semitism.

“Unfortunately, though, Hagee is an exponent of the ‘End of Days’ when Jesus will return to Earth and non-believers, Jews included, will have to either convert to Christianity or fall into a lake of fire (Hell). Hagee further believes that the Jewish people are guilty of deicide – the murder of Christ – the one unpardonable sin. This belief has been at the heart of anti-Semitism for nearly two thousand years. Without this belief, Adolf Hitler might not have been able to rely on both the hatred and the silence of those who supported or closed their eyes to the evils of the Holocaust. But most perniciously, Hagee has stated that the Nazis had operated on God’s behalf to chase the Jews from Europe and ‘shepherd’ them to Palestine. And, Hagee continues, Hitler was a ‘hunter’ sent by God to expedite His will of having the Jews re-establish a state of Israel.”

I was born in Greenwich Village, New York in 1954 and up until that day we call 9/11, I never gave a thought beyond my family, friends and local community. That day transformed me and I began to research about the Middle East and traveled seven times to Israel Palestine beginning in 2005.

On 6 November 2007, I attended a John Hagee cult event in Miami and was astounded by his mastery of manipulating the fears of Christian Zionists and south Florida’s right wing Jewish community.

As the shofars blew in the packed to the rafters James L. Knight Center, Hagee blew idiot wind that brought the crowd to their feet, “Israel was re-born by an act of God and Israel lives! God Jehovah will bury Hamas, Hezbollah and Iran! The flag of Israel will fly over the undivided Jerusalem and be the praise of all the earth! It’s 1938 again and the new Hitler is Ahmadinejad! Radical Islamists are threatening to develop nuclear weapons in order to destroy Israel and then the USA! But we are indivisible and we are both here forever!”

The oft repeated comment ascribed to President Ahmadinejad, that “Israel must be wiped off the map,” was addressed by Virginia Tilley, Professor of political science who wrote:

“In his October 2005 speech, Mr. Ahmadinejad never used the word “map” or the term “wiped off”. According to Farsi-language experts like Juan Cole and even right-wing services like MEMRI, what he actually said was “this regime that is occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time.”

“In this speech to an annual anti-Zionist conference, Mr. Ahmadinejad was being prophetic, not threatening. He was citing Imam Khomeini, who said this line in the 1980s (a period when Israel was actually selling arms to Iran, so apparently it was not viewed as so ghastly then). Mr. Ahmadinejad had just reminded his audience that the Shah’s regime, the Soviet Union, and Saddam Hussein had all seemed enormously powerful and immovable, yet the first two had vanished almost beyond recall and the third now languished in prison. So, too, the ‘occupying regime’ in Jerusalem would someday be gone. His message was, in essence, ‘This too shall pass.’”[2]

Tikkun is Hebrew for mend, repair and transform the world.

Tikkun is also an American Jewish progressive political and spiritual community and organization, that researched and discovered that there are three distinct elements energizing the Christian Zionists:

  1. A strong commitment to conservative and ultra-nationalist American politics (so strong, I believe, that if the U.S. were to decide to break with Israel, this part of the Christian Zionist leadership would go along with that and drop its defense of Israeli policies).
  2. Dispensationalist religious commitments that lead many of the Christian Zionists to yearn for a cataclysmic “end of history” eschatological war in the Middle East that will precipitate the second coming of Jesus and the Rapture in which
  3. all true Christians will go to heaven and all Jews who have not yet converted to Christianity will burn in hell for eternity.

  4. A widespread understanding among many Christians that atonement and repentance is needed for 1700 years of murder, rape, and oppression of Jews that was frequently generated by the Church (though, of course, the Evangelicals do not recognize that church as their church). In this category are many Christian Zionists who genuinely feel terrible about what has happened to the Jews and genuinely want to help the Jewish people. Their philo-Semitism is real and sincere. [3]

But in Miami that night, I witnessed multitudes of misled and misinformed Christian’s celebrating military occupation, violence, power and control but they ignored the gospel/good news that Jesus promised, “It is the peacemakers who shall be called the children of God.” –Matthew 5:9

Hagee repeatedly cited that all worship the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, but neglected to mention that the first mention of Israel is in Genesis 32:22, when Jacob was renamed Israel for having wrestled and struggled with the Divine. This Christian Anarchist [meaning I take Jesus very seriously but all the rest is commentary for me] contends that anyone who wrestles and struggles with the Ultimate Mystery of the Universe is also Israel, for Israel is not just a State but a state of mind, spirit and soul.

Hagee threw out the names of Hebrew prophets, but neglected the fact that God raised up prophets to speak truth to power, to confront arrogance and to remind the people, “What does God require? He has told you o’man! Be just, be merciful, and walk humbly with your Lord.” -Micah 6:8

God also raised up prophets to remind the people that they cannot know the mind of God for “His thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.”- Isaiah 55:8

God also raised up prophets to admonish the “stiff necked people” [Exodus 34:9, Proverbs 29:1] and warned them that, “My people are fools, they do not know me! They are skilled in doing evil, they know not how to do good.”-Jeremiah 4:22

Hagee also invoked the “Torah Way” but the Torah commands:

“From Moses to Jeremiah and Isaiah, the Prophets taught…that the Jewish claim on the land of Israel was totally contingent on the moral and spiritual life of the Jews who lived there, and that the land would, as the Torah tells us, ‘vomit you out’ if people did not live according to the highest moral vision of Torah. Over and over again, the Torah repeated its most frequently stated mitzvah [command]: When you enter your land, do not oppress the stranger; the other, the one who is an outsider of your society, the powerless one and then not only ‘you shall love your neighbor as yourself’ but also ‘you shall love the other.’” [4]

A Brief History of Christian Zionism:

In 1891, Christian fundamentalist and lay-preacher, William Blackstone appealed to President Benjamin Harrison to help establish a Jewish state in Palestine. Blackstone was a disciple of Dwight L. Moody and the father of premillenial dispensationalism, John Nelson Darby, influenced them both.

Darby had great success in connecting with the post-Civil War survivors and was able to transmit his new heretical theology into the heartland of America. Despite the horrifying news of Czarist pogroms that could have been the catalyst to establishing a Jewish state before the Holocaust, the Christian fundamentalists moved onto the Scopes Trial and forgot about the Jews-for a while.

Fifty years later and after millions of Jews and other innocents who had been deemed outcasts by the Third Reich were tortured and murdered and the British Mandate ran out, the land we call Holy was partitioned by the United Nations to make a home for Jewish immigrants.

Most evangelicals interpreted the establishment of the state of Israel to be the fulfillment of -how they understood and interpreted- certain prophetic scriptures. They interpreted the Israeli victory in the 1967 War and the capture of Jerusalem, the West Bank, Gaza, Sinai and the Golan Heights to be an act of God but neglected to consider the fact of Israeli superior military might.

The American Bi-Centennial in 1976 was a watershed year for the religious right. While mainline churches declined, evangelical and fundamentalist churches became the fastest growing sector of American Christianity. TIME magazine named 1976 as The Year of The Evangelical and suddenly they became a political force.

Following the War of 1967, Israel gained an increased portion of USA foreign aid and military budgets, becoming the ‘western pillar’ of the USA strategic alliance against Soviet incursion into the Middle East.

During this period AIPAC and other pro-Israeli lobby agencies began their ascent to power in shaping USA foreign policy. The Roman Catholic Church and mainline Protestant denominations began to develop a more balanced approach to the Middle East, bringing them closer to the international consensus on the Palestinian question but Pro-Israel organizations interpreted this shift as being Anti-Israel and in turn began to court conservative and fundamentalist Christians.

In 1977, when President Carter stated “The Palestinians deserve a right to their homeland,” Christian fundamentalists and the Israeli lobby responded with full page ads stating: “The time has come for evangelical Christians to affirm their belief in biblical prophecy and Israel’s divine right to the land…and affirm our belief in the Promised Land to the Jewish people.”

The Reagan White House hosted a series of seminars from the Israeli lobby and Christian right. This was when Hal Lindsay, Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell and the Moral majority infiltrated the West Wing.
Falwell received a Lear Jet from the Israeli government for his personal travel. When Israel bombed the Iraqi nuclear plant in 1981, Prime Minister Begin called Jerry Falwell -before he called Reagan- to ask him to explain to the Christian public the reasons for the bombings!

In 1996, Netanyahu and Likud ideology dominated Israeli policy and 17 evangelical USA pastors pledged their support of the illegal colonies in the West Bank, Gaza, the Golan Heights and full support for a Jerusalem under sovereignty of Israel.

The Christian Zionists launched a PR campaign under the banner: “Christians Call for a United Jerusalem.”

They ignored the fact that they were in conflict with American policy and the Oslo process as well as a direct attack on Roman Catholic and mainline Protestant unity with the Churches for Middle East Peace that called for a Shared Jerusalem.

In 2006, Hagee wrote for the Pentecostal magazine Charisma, “The coming nuclear showdown with Iran is a certainty. Israel and America must confront Iran’s nuclear ability and willingness to destroy Israel with nuclear weapons. For Israel to wait is to risk committing national suicide.”

With the publication of the fictional Left Behind series many more Christians were mislead and a major reason I wrote KEEP HOPE ALIVE was to challenge its escapist heretical theology.

274 years ago on 29 January, Thomas Paine was born a man before his time; but his wisdom and spirit speak to the NOW:

“Soon after I had published the pamphlet Common Sense [on Feb. 14, 1776] in America, I saw the exceeding probability that a revolution in the system of government would be followed by a revolution in the system of religion…The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion.”

Thomas Jefferson penned The Jefferson Bible: The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth which weeded out the miracle stories as it illuminated what Jesus’ was about:
Always work for PEACEFUL resolutions, even to the point of returning violence with COMPASSION.

Consider valuable the things that have no material value.

Do not judge others and do not bear grudges.

Give out of true generosity; not because you expect to be repaid.

Being true to your self is more important than being loyal to ones family/tribe.

Those who think they know the most are the most ignorant.
Jesus said that his mother, sisters and brothers were those that did the will of the Father and again, the Hebrew prophet Micah summed it up best: “What does the Lord require? He has already told you o’man: Be Just, Be Merciful and walk humbly with your God.”

To be just is to be fair and reasonable.

To be merciful means to treat all people the way we want to be treated.

To be humble is knowing oneself; and good and evil cut through every human heart.
Jesus taught that the only way to resist evil is with good. Jesus was a nonviolent Palestinian devout Jew who was mocked, whipped and nailed to a cross and his final prayer was, “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.”

Education is the way to compassion and compassion will bring in the change we all really want to see in this world for we all desire this same trinity; self-deter­mination, freedom and peace.

When the people Rise Up/Intifada to seize their RIGHTS governments had better get out of their way and let them have them.

Hear Richard’s latest interview here:

http://www.radio4all.net/files/ jblankfort@earthlink.net

/1752-1-totw012611rforer.mp3

Very RELATED:

7:35 God’s Side and The 9th of Av: Number 9, Number 9, Number 9

1. http://www.richardforer.com/writing/jewish-support-for-anti-semitic-theology-dooms-israel-to-endless-conflict/

2. http://www.counterpunch.org/tilley08282006.html

3. Rabbi Lerner, Tikkun Magazine page 9, Nov/Dec. 2007

4. Rabbi Lerner, Tikkun Magazine page 35, Sept./Oct. 2007


Eileen Fleming is a regular columnist for Novakeo.com

Eileen Fleming, Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org
A Feature Correspondent for Arabisto.com
Author of “Keep Hope Alive” and “Memoirs of a Nice Irish American ‘Girl’s’ Life in Occupied Territory”
Producer “30 Minutes with Vanunu” and “13 Minutes with Vanunu”

Compassion VS. Antichrists

February 27, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

AntichristsWilliam Blake wrote, “Imagination is Evidence of the Divine” and I agree totally, but must add that genuine Compassion is a Manifestation of The Divine.

All of the Koran’s 114 chapters except one begins with the phrase “Allah [which is Arabic for God] is merciful and compassionate.”

A true Muslim recognizes the brotherhood of man and will respect and treat even a non-Muslim as a brother.

A true Muslims understand that compassion and charity, is serving God.

The Koran states, “No man is a true believer unless he desires for his brother that which he desires for himself.”
Learn More Here:

COMPASSION is Manifestation of The Divine

The cult of ‘Christian’ Zionism is what the concept of the Anti-Christ is all about.

This heretical theology of Premellenial Dispensation worships a god of Armageddon and not the God of love, forgiveness and compassion that Jesus/AKA The Prince of Peace modeled even while being nailed to a cross.

The Left Behind series of fiction is the epitome of what millennium of theologians have always understood to be what the term anti-Christ is truly about.

The term “Antichrist” only appears five times in the Bible, but a cult not based on sound theology has created an urban legend that seeks Armageddon.

The term “Antichrist” never appears in John’s Revelation or Daniel, two disparate works of literature written three centuries apart and under very different circumstances, yet the Left Behinder’s weave them together.

The small texts that mention the “Antichrist” were written to attack the Gnostic understanding of who Christ was. A Gnostic relies on intuition and not on dogma and doctrine. Gnostic’s were most certainly free spirits and most all of the writings we have about Gnostics, have been the attacks upon them. That all changed when the Nag Hamadi Library was translated and published, for what had been deemed heretical by those in power in the fourth century can now be read in most every language.

Biblical scholars today agree that many books of the Bible were written by others in the name of an apostle, for the quickest way to gain credibility is to trade on another’s reputation. We may never know if the author who coined the term “Antichrist” was actually the apostle John who wrote I John and 2 John-the only sources where the term appears.

John also say’s much more: “Dear Children, as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many have come.”- I John 2:18

“This is how we know who the children of God are not: anyone who does not do right; nor anyone who does not love his brother.”-I John 3:10

“If anyone has material possessions and see’s his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him?  Let us love with actions and in truth.”-I John 3:17

“God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. There is no fear in love. Perfect love drives out all fear because fear has to do with punishment [and God is love].”-1 John 4:18

The theology promoted in the Left Behind fiction is a theology based on fear and punishment. These misinformed Christians worship a punitive father as God. They do not have eyes to see that nature is God’s primary temple, and war the greatest abomination.

During the time when John was writing about the spirit of Antichrist, Gnosticism was still in its evolution and far from the intricately developed system of the second and third centuries when the church and its institutional hierarchy became firmly established. During the time John was writing against false teachings, the Gnostics were by and large libertines who denied Christ’s humanity. Some Gnostics claimed that Christ only appeared to have a body; others said the divine Christ joined the man Jesus at his baptism and left him when he died.

The Gnostics left no testimony in their behalf, so all we have to go on is what was written against them until the discovery of the Nag Hamadi Library. These Gnostic texts offer no new information, they provide no answers, but they do illuminate us to the fact that 2,000 years ago that follower’s of Christ were very diverse and engaged in lively debates on who he was and what was his purpose.

The Armageddon groupies believe they will be lifted out of the misery of the world, and neglect to reflect upon the Antichrist within their own heart. The term anti/against Christ means to be anti/against his teachings. A neglected and ignored fact is that Christ is quoted in Matthew 12:31-32, Mark 3:28-29, and Luke 12:10 which are all simpatico with the Gnostic gospel of Thomas saying 44:

Jesus said: “Whoever blasphemes against the father will be forgiven, whoever blasphemes against the son will be forgiven, but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven either on earth or in heaven.”

The Holy Spirit has always been understood to mean the spark of the Divine within all beings, for the spirit of God is within all created things.

One should wonder what spirit is driving those that want to bomb another, for just who would Jesus bomb? Just who would Jesus torture?

NO ONE!

Jesus has been hijacked by the right wing fundamentalists and the time has come to liberate him. Christ was no Christian, that term was not even coined until three decades after he walked the earth. But, Christ was a social justice radical revolutionary Palestinian devout Jewish road warrior who rose up/intifada and challenged the job security of the temple priests by claiming there was no need for ritual baths and animal sacrifice to be OK with God, for God loves all, just as they are!

Jesus was crucified because he disturbed the status quo of the occupying forces of Rome by teaching subversive concepts such as all people are equal and valuable. Christ taught that to be his sister and brother one must forgive to be forgiven and that one must love ones enemies. He modeled that one must always work for peaceful resolutions, even to the point of returning violence with forgiveness and compassion as he did while being nailed to a cross. Christ always dealt compassionately with sinners and outcasts, but hypocrites received his wrath.

Compassion, which is sorrow for the suffering of others accompanied by the urge to help, is what should define the Christian attitude.

If there is no compassion within a Christian, then it is the spirit of the Antichrist that rules.

Christian Zionists desire to convert the Jews to Christianity or leave them behind to perish in a nuclear holocaust, for they believe that is Gods desire.

A short history on where this corruption of Christ’s message came from:

In 1891, Christian fundamentalist and lay-preacher, William Blackstone appealed to President Benjamin Harrison to help establish a Jewish state in Palestine. Blackstone was a disciple of Dwight L. Moody and they both were influenced by the father of premillenial dispensationalism, John Nelson Darby.

Darby had great success in connecting with the post-Civil War survivors and was able to transmit his new heretical theology into the heartland of America. Despite the horrifying news of Czarist pogroms that could have been the catalyst to establishing a Jewish state before the Holocaust, the Christian fundamentalists moved onto the Scope’s Trial and forgot about the Jews for a while.

Fifty years later and after six million Jews and five million other innocents were cold-bloodily murdered because good people did nothing for a very long while-and only after the British Mandate ran out, Israel was born.

Most evangelicals interpreted the establishment of Israel to be the fulfillment of -how they understood and interpreted- certain prophetic scriptures. They interpreted the Israeli victory in the 1967 War and the capture of Jerusalem, the West Bank, Gaza, Sinai and the Golan Heights to be an act of God and never considered the fact of Israeli superior military might and USA Intelligence.

The American Bi-Centennial in 1976 was a watershed year for the religious right. While mainline churches declined evangelical fundamentalist churches became the fastest growing sector of American Christianity. TIME magazine named 1976 as The Year of The Evangelical and suddenly they became a legitimate political and religious force.

Following the War of 1967, Israel gained an increased portion of USA foreign aid and military budgets, becoming the ‘western pillar’ of the USA strategic alliance against Soviet incursion into the Middle East…During this period AIPAC and other pro-Israeli lobby agencies began their ascent to power in shaping USA foreign policy. The Roman Catholic Church and mainline Protestant denominations began to develop a more balanced approach to the Middle East, bringing them closer to the international consensus on the Palestinian question. Pro-Israel organizations interpreted this shift as being Anti-Israel and in turn began to court the conservative Christians.

In 1977, when President Carter stated “The Palestinians deserve a right to their homeland,” the Christian fundamentalists and Israeli lobby responded with full page ads stating: “The time has come for evangelical Christians to affirm their belief in biblical prophecy and Israel’s divine right to the land…and affirm our belief in the Promised Land to the Jewish people.”

The Reagan White House hosted a series of seminars from the Israeli lobby and Christian right. This was when Hal Lindsay, Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell and the Moral majority infiltrated the West Wing.

LEARN MORE:


John Hagee CUFI
conference in Miami

Falwell received a Lear Jet from the Israeli government for his personal travel…When Israel bombed the Iraqi nuclear plant in 1981, Prime Minister Begin called Jerry Falwell -before he called Reagan- to ask him ‘to explain to the Christian public the reasons for the bombings.

In 1996, Netanyahu and Likud ideology dominated Israeli policy and 17 evangelical USA pastors pledged their support of the illegal colonies in the West Bank, Gaza, the Golan Heights and full support for a Jerusalem under sovereignty of Israel.

The Christian Zionists launched a PR campaign under the banner: “Christians Call for a United Jerusalem.” They ignored the fact that they were in conflict with American policy and the Oslo process as well as a direct attack on Roman Catholic and mainline Protestant unity with the Churches for Middle East Peace that called for a Shared Jerusalem.

“The coming nuclear showdown with Iran is a certainty,” Hagee wrote in 2006, in the Pentecostal magazine Charisma. “Israel and America must confront Iran’s nuclear ability and willingness to destroy Israel with nuclear weapons. For Israel to wait is to risk committing national suicide.”

The theology of the fictional Left Behind series is the epitome of the spirit of the anti-Christ:  which is the evil within ones own heart that leads one to fear “the other” and compels them to violence.

Thomas Jefferson did America and the world a great service when he penned The Jefferson Bible: The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth which illuminates just how far these Christians have strayed from the message Christ delivered and modeled with his life:

Which was consistently compassionate and nonviolent and to be just: for justice comes from virtue which comes from the heart.

To treat people the way we want to be treated.

To always work for PEACEFUL resolutions, even to the point of returning violence with COMPASSION.

To consider valuable the things that have no material value.

Do not judge others, do not bear grudges, be modest and unpretentious.

To give out of true generosity, not because we expect to be repaid and that being true to ones self is more important than being loyal to ones family,

And those who think they know the most are the most ignorant.

According to Christ, to be his follower, one must do what the Father requires. The Hebrew prophet Micah summed it up best: “What does the Lord require? He has already told you o’man: Be Just, Be Merciful and walk humbly with your God.” -Micah 6:8:

To be just is to be fair and reasonable.

To be merciful means to treat all people the way we want to be treated.

To be humble is knowing oneself; the good and the evil, for both cut through every human heart.

Christ taught that the only way to resist evil is with good and he modeled that one must always work for peaceful resolutions, even to the point of returning violence with compassion and forgiveness. Jesus did just that, even after being mocked, whipped and nailed to a cross for he prayed:  “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.”
VERY RELATED:

The Stages of the Soul and How Fundamentalism is Holding up Evolution

God’s Side and The 9th of Av: Number 9, Number 9, Number 9

The New Body of Christ and Liberating Jesus

Valentine Message from a Prophetess of Love


Eileen Fleming is a regular columnist for Novakeo.com

Eileen Fleming, Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org
A Feature Correspondent for Arabisto.com
Author of “Keep Hope Alive” and “Memoirs of a Nice Irish American ‘Girl’s’ Life in Occupied Territory”
Producer “30 Minutes with Vanunu” and “13 Minutes with Vanunu”

Where Are Dobson And PCC Now?

December 13, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

James DobsonI ask my non-Christian friends to bear with me on this column. As one will quickly see, this column is addressed to my fellow Christian conservatives.

Regular readers of this column know that one of my chief frustrations is the way Christian conservatives (otherwise known as the “Religious Right”) are so easily deceived by Republican politicians. The all-time classic illustration of this foible is the way the Religious Right was (and is) so enamored with President George W. Bush. No matter what Bush did: no matter how egregiously unconstitutional, no matter how utterly stupid, no matter how blatantly evil his actions were, Christian conservatives (almost universally) either robotically accepted and approved what he did, or blindly looked the other way. It was maddening!

It was as if Christian conservatives lost all ability to reason; it was as if they lost all discernment and discretion. Because George W. Bush claimed to be a Christian, and because he was a Republican, he could do no wrong. To this very day, the only group of people who yet approves of Bush’s Presidency is the Religious Right. Everyone else on the planet realizes that George W. Bush’s Presidency will go down in history has one of the all-time worst.

George Bush took a prosperous and robust economy, and led America to the verge of a second Great Depression. He has taken a (relatively) free and independent republic to the brink of becoming a globalist Police State. He has pushed the envelope of executive power; he has trampled individual liberty; he has made a mockery of justice; and he has made America the laughingstock of the world. In addition, Bush has misused and abused our nation’s bravest and finest by his illegal and inexcusable invasion of Iraq. No matter. The Religious Right still loves him. Why? Because he is a “Christian” Republican.

Since 2000, James Dobson, Pensacola Christian College (PCC), and their peers around the country have had an eight-year lovefest with George W. Bush. Life-size cardboard posters of Bush have stood in their bookstores for eight long, laborious years. Grade school children in their Christian schools have been subjected to Bush propaganda for eight tedious, tiresome years. To them, G.W. Bush ranks somewhere between Moses and the Almighty. And nothing Bush said or did seemed to matter.

I said all of that to call attention to a recent interview Cynthia McFadden had with President Bush on ABC’s Nightline this past Monday. During the interview, McFadden asked Bush if the Bible was literally true.

Now, acceptance of the Bible’s literalness is one of conservative Christianity’s most sacred doctrines. There is not a professor at PCC (or any other conservative Christian college or university) that would keep his or her job for a nano-second, if he or she even questioned the veracity of the Scriptures. Right? You know it’s true! Most conservative Christians would even go so far as to say that one cannot be a born-again Christian who does not believe that the Bible is the infallible Word of God.

Well, what was George Bush’s response to McFadden’s question? He said, “You know. Probably not. . . . No, I’m not a literalist.” Notice, Bush twice denied the veracity of the Scriptures.

Now, Bush has no reason to “fudge” his answers, right? He has no more elections to face. No more, “He’s got to say this to get elected,” which was the flippant explanation given by the Religious Right to excuse Bush’s numerous apostate positions during the past eight years.

So, George W. Bush clearly stated that he does not believe the Bible is God’s Holy, inspired Word. Will Dobson and PCC still say that Bush is “one of us”?

Then, as Bush attempted to give a Christian testimony, he told McFadden, “It is hard for me to justify or prove the mystery of the Almighty in my life. All I can just tell you is that I got back into religion and I quit drinking shortly thereafter . . . .”

What kind of Christian testimony is this: “I got back into religion”? I doubt that this kind of testimony would grant membership in the Campus Church (which is not even a genuine New Testament church, you understand) at PCC or in virtually any conservative Christian church.

I am confident, however, that Bush’s statements will do nothing to diminish his god-like status with James Dobson and the rest of the Religious Right in America. For eight long and bloody years, Christian conservatives have been selling their convictions, doctrines, and even their consciences to George W. Bush. I will even go so far as to say that, in many respects, millions of Christians have turned President Bush into an idol. Many of them would forsake their pastor, their friends, and even their own family before they would forsake George W. Bush and the Republican Party.

Of course, none of this would have happened had Christians–and especially Christian pastors–not lost touch with their American heritage. Had they maintained a studied understanding of constitutional government, and of the principles of Natural Law upon which it rests, they would not have become dupes for Bush and his fellow neocons.

I doubt very much whether Thomas Jefferson was a born-again Christian (after all, he, like Bush, expressed doubt regarding the Bible’s literalness), but he fully understood–and embraced–the “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” and was more than willing to inculcate those principles into our country’s most sacred document: our Declaration of Independence. As such, Jefferson will be forever regarded as one of America’s greatest Founding Fathers and Presidents. Believe me, America was far better off with Thomas Jefferson than with George W. Bush!

So, where are Dobson and PCC now? Will any of them utter a word of rebuke to their “Christian” President for his apostasy? No, they won’t. (As a comparison, contemporary pastors most certainly did rebuke Jefferson for his public statements questioning Christ’s divinity, even though he was a Founding Father and author of the Declaration of Independence.) Of course, Barack Obama will not escape the public repudiation of Dobson and Company. Why? He is a Democrat. You see, it’s not principle; it’s partisan politics that matters, after all.

While we are asking questions, when will our fellow Christians and pastors finally open their history books? When will they read the U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights, and Declaration of Independence? And when will they open their minds and hearts–even a crack–to the possibility that they might have been duped, and that there is more to being elected to the office of President besides being a “Christian” Republican? Probably never.

In four more years, there will doubtless be another “Christian” Republican for the Religious Right to fawn over. Where he or she stands on the Constitution won’t matter; neither will it matter whether this newest “Christian” Republican has any commitment to national sovereignty, the Bill of Rights, or to fundamental freedoms. All that will matter is that he or she professes to be a Christian, and has an “R” behind their name. And, quite frankly, this last election proved that even a Christian profession is not necessary. All that is required is the “R” behind the name.

Chuck Baldwin is a regular columnist for Novakeo.com
You can reach him at: chuck@chuckbaldwinlive.com
Please visit Chuck’s web site at: http://www.chuckbaldwinlive.com

Televangelists Snicker All The Way To the Bank

August 6, 2008 by · 3 Comments 

Benny HinnI detest the prosperity gospel. Ever noticed how the “name-it-and-claim-it” preachers are lining their own pockets but those who support their ministries can barely make ends meet? These smooth talking televangelists are adept at using psychological manipulation and peer pressure to persuade people to pull out their credit cards. (More on this later.)

Televangelists hold to Word-Faith beliefs that are both blasphemous and heretical. Faith preachers say, “Demand what you want by faith and you will receive it!” Moreover, they hold that Christ provided for physical healing at the cross. So not only are Christians saved from sin, they are promised a healthy life! You ask, “Is what they teach biblical?” Nope. Still, Faith teachers contend that their “enlightened” view of the Bible is the gospel truth. Read some of the blogs and you will discover that many in the Body of Christ find the radical beliefs and practices of the false prophets in the Charismatic movement deeply disturbing. Unfortunately much of their unscriptural teaching and ungodly behavior is posted on YouTube.com, GodTube.com, and shown on God TV.

Jesus did not mince words with this warning:

“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves” (Mat. 7:15).

What I’m about to reveal illustrates the great lengths two false prophets have gone to to add to their own personal wealth.

In a recent article “God Bless Your Credit Card” [1] Rapport news describes what occurred in Johannesburg during televangelist Benny Hinn’s Miracle Crusade. Around 18,000 people went to the Coca-Cola Dome in Randburg to hear Hinn’s message of healing and miracles. What they heard was that God wants to make people rich. Pastor Todd Koontz, who accompanied Hinn, spoke about financial burdens. He told the receptive crowd that 500 audience members would receive “an exceptional blessing.” He said the service would “yield millionaires and billionaires within 24 hours.” The “exceptional blessing” rested on everyone donating up to $1,000. Here’s the catch. To motivate people to part with their money the blessing would be poured out for only two minutes. That’s right. Folks had only two minutes to receive God’s “exceptional blessing.” Credit-card machines were at the ready to accommodate those who were convinced that the “anointing” was flowing through to them.

Pay God for a blessing? Leave it to a sham artist to come up with something that preposterous.

But what about all the disabled who had come to Hinn for healing? Did Koontz really expect them to get to the stage in 2 minutes?

Pastor Tommie Ferreira was not happy with the underhanded way in which Koontz, on Hinn’s behalf, squeezed money from the gullible sheep. He saw a large number of people push their way to the front. “Poor people, rich people, people from all sections of our society.” So naturally he got to wondering if any of the people who donated $1,000 or more had become millionaires, as Koontz promised.

Later that week Rapport News spoke to a money counter in Hinn’s South African office in Durban who admitted that after a week they were still raking in money. Which is not surprising at all considering that many people give to get — and Koontz promised they’d get rich!

Something else the money counter told Rapport:

“’Americans always talk in dollars. If some of the churchgoers believed that they would not be blessed, then they should not have given their money.’”

And besides…

“’The church-goers did not have to give $1,000. If they couldn’t afford it, then they could’ve given less. And, some of them did.”

Does this not make your blood boil?

Ferreira assured Rapport that he wasn’t attacking Hinn and Koontz. “It just20really gets my goat when people make unfounded claims and then they’re off with these people’s money.”

At last, some good news! Someone at the event actually had the backbone to check up on Benny Hinn and put the facts out there!

If this kind of mind-manipulation weren’t such a serious issue in the Church, it would be laughable. But it makes you want to cry. Even though people have been warned about televangelists they continue to contribute to their ministries!

Another televangelist who uses tactics similar to Benny Hinn’s is John Avanzini. At his events a message is flashed across a large screen: INCREASE… INCREASE… INCREASE for the waiting audience to see. Some televangelists induce the “sheeple” to increase a ministries bank account by using psychological manipulation to get what they want.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Crosstalk Radio Talk Show host Ingrid Schlueter drove to Harvest Church in Tinley Park, Illinois to investigate the Inspiring Faith Conference. Ingrid tells us what happened after Avanzini finally arrived on stage: (All quotes by Ingrid are from “John Avanzini and His Talking Stones” 2)

“After a rambling, free-ranging talk about the worsening economy and the price of gas, he told us that he would give us all two things to help us get through perilous times. The first was a list of 7 Bible promises, as he called them, that he had printed up on a card. The mixture of truth and error was very evident here.

“The list…gave the following “seven anchors for these perilous times”. Note that the word prosperity as he uses it is referring to material wealth. Spiritual wealth was never mentioned that night.

  1. God has already made plans for your prosperity. Jeremiah 29:11
  2. Everything you will need and want has already been provided for you by your great God. 2 Peter 1:3
  3. God has already given you his best so there is no need to worry about him denying you anything else. Romans 8:32
  4. God wants you to live with limitless supply. Judges 18:10
  5. Your wealthy place is always on the other side of the perilous times you are facing.
  6. It gives God great pleasure to prosper you in good times…in bad times..at all times. Psalms 35:27
  7. In good times or in bad times, God is willing to make you rich. Proverbs 10:22

Ingrid describes how truth is mixed with error in the 7 Bible Promises:

“All of those Scripture verses given do talk about the prospering of God’s people. The idea that this is always referring to physical wealth is patently absurd. Avanzini and all of his huckster compatriots only use Scripture as proof texts for their own ridiculous claims that God wants everyone wearing Brioni suits and Rolex watches.”

Avanzini informs the crowd that to help them through “perilous times” he would give them a stone. Ingrid describes what the stone represents:

“He went through several Bible references where stones ‘talked’ in the Old Testament. Here Avanzini introduces the stone idea. He strolled down the aisles, his ring winking in the lights, and held out a shiny stone for a woman to hold. Avanzini told the assembled crowd of about 650 people that these stones should be rubbed whenever people faced rising prices or higher prices at the pump. The ushers went down the aisles with buckets of shiny, smooth stones and handed them out.”

As I mentioned above, Avanzini uses psychological tactics on Christians who come to hear him speak. As soon as he had the Harvest Church audience in the palm of his hand, he conveyed his real message. Incredibly, he takes Bible stories out of context and misapplies the intended meaning to get people to buy what he’s selling. For example, he used the story of Gideon found in the Old Testament book of Judges. Ingrid tells how he skillfully twisted the story to suit his purpose: (My comments in brackets.)

“His [Gideon’s] offering of a goat [to God] was such a sacrifice for someone who lived in a cave. He [Avanzini] described how the angel of the Lord IGNITED the offering on the rock. We, who were in possession of the lucky rubbing stones, would need to ignite ours. I’ll give you a guess how that should be done…[I]t turns out, Avanzini had a whole new doctrinal revelation to tell us about: the doctrine of reverse entrapment. If you’ve never heard of that before, that’s because God just showed it to him right there. Reverse entrapment is when you put a gift to Avanzoni [sic] on a credit card and outsmart the lenders who are trying to get rich off your debt. When you put a gift on a credit card, I quote, ‘something happens in the spirit world.’ Here he tells everyone how to have a credit card breakthrough. Turns out Avanzini has a way for you to get rid of your mortgage debt. All you have to do is to give him a20gift the size of your house payment and God will see that your mortgage gets paid off right away. If you don’t have a house, $500 will do nicely for future debt. Avanzini assured us that it worked for him.

“Perhaps the man sensed a few hostile vibes from the audience (from our row in particular) because he warned us not to let the devil keep us back from getting free from debt by putting a gift for his ministry on our credit card. The credit card ‘invitation’ began as the keyboardist began to noodle around with some mood music. Then Avanzini warned everyone again not to let the devil keep us away. The people streamed down to the stage area and wrote out their credit card numbers and house payment gifts and left them at the expensively shod feet of the speaker. While the people came down to the front to divest themselves of their money, Avanzini appropriately chose to tell an Al Capone joke. I doubt if one other person in the house recognized the irony.

“Avanzini then prayed an igniting prayer over the stones everyone was clutching. Presumably, we still have to ignite our own with a credit card gift, but maybe his igniting prayer was considered the first step. The entire thing was an unspeakable tragedy. These men target the poor in particular because they are the ones desperate enough to need a ‘breakthrough.’ That is the evil in all of this. The rich aren’t stupid enough to give away their cash to the likes of Avanzini. It’s the poor and the needy, the hurting and the ill who desperately need help who are vulnerable to these sharks.”

Speaking of sharks. Did you know that God wants popular televangelist Joel Osteen to be rich? Portfolio.com repoted in “God Wants Me to Be Rich” [3] that in these troubled times “Reverend Feelgood” wants us to be rich, too.

“Joel feels our pain and has made himself wealthy (reportedly earning $13 million for his last book advance alone) and his church prosperous ($75 million and counting in annual revenue) by urging us to let go of it, to turn it over to God, to accept God’s favor so that we may be as prosperous as Joel.”

So, if we accept God’s favor He will prospers us financially? Who knew? There is no biblical precedent whatsoever for what Osteen preaches. But that hasn’t stopped the name-it-and-claim-it preachers from going all over the world preaching that God wants us to have a big house, drive expensive cars, even own yaughts and jet airplanes – and many of them do!

More…

“Osteen is one of a new breed of televangelists — Joyce Meyer, T.D. Jakes, and Creflo Dollar are also rising stars — who are preaching a less sanctimonious, more inclusive message. His church is in that part of the economy that thrives in troubled times, that can count on full pews when wallets are empty and an ever more receptive audience if we do go into a full-on recession.”

As noted above it would appear that Benny Hinn and John Avanzini are already making plans to see that they, or anyone close to them, won’t suffer during a full-on recession.

Lately televangelists are receiving a huge amount of attention, even from the U.S. Senate. Six prosperity ministries are under Senate Finance Committee investigation because of “possible misuse of donations.” The list includes Benny Hinn, Kenneth Copeland, Joyce Meyer, Creflo Dollar, Eddie Long and Randy & Paula White. All of them have become filthy rich because of supporter’s generous donations. For example, televangelist Kenneth Copeland’s ministry (Eagle Mountain International Church of Newark Texas) owns a multi-million dollar Citation 10 and has a private airstrip capable of landing jets that cool their engines in a hangar. Brother Copeland personally owns three other aircraft. According to t he TimesOnline, Copeland told his congregation, “The Lord spoke to me and said ‘you’re gonna believe for a Citation 10, right now.’” He promised them that the jet “will never ever be used as for anything other than what is becoming of you Lord Jesus.”

TimesOnline revealed that Copeland’s ministry “leases land for Mr. Copeland’s cattle and horses and also leases land to the family so that it can operate oil and gas wells.” The ministry also owns a $6 million lakefront mansion. And that’s not the half of it.

Copeland did not cotton to the Senate’s investigation into his finances:

“In a television interview last month, Mr. Copeland’s son John hit back at allegations of financial impropriety:

‘The jet is a tool. It is just a tool to use in ministry. Where in the Bible does it say you should have watchdogs and judgment groups that watch over ministries?’”

Where in the Bible does it say Christians should be rich? My husband, a pilot, would relish owning Copeland’s ministry “tool,” as would most pilots. Christian pilots can “believe9 D for a Citation 10, but the chances of owning one is slim and none.

Certainly the Apostle Paul’s life would have gone a whole lot smoother had he been the CEO of a tent company, instead of a humble tentmaker. As an itinerant preacher having money would have afforded him first class accommodations on luxury sailing vessels. But God did not open up the vault in the Bank of Heaven for his beloved apostles. To Paul he said, “’My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me” (2 Cor.12:9). This is authentic Christianity!

Please join me in “believing” that false prophets like Benny Hinn, John Avanzini, Joel Osteen and Kenneth Copeland will be exposed as frauds and go flat broke.

“Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take him into your house or welcome him. Anyone who welcomes him shares in his wicked work.” – 2 John 1: 9-11

Notes:
[1] God Bless Your Credit Card, By Marthinus van Vuuren, Rapport

[2] John Avanzini and His Talking Stones – Ingrid Schlueter, Slice of Laodicea blog

[3] God Wants Me to Be Rich, By Karl Taro Greenfeld, Portfolio.com

Additional Reading:
The Word-Faith Movement, By Gary Gilley

Marsha West is a regular columnist for Novakeo.com
She can be reached at: embrigade@aol.com

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