Archive for the ‘Bethel Church (Redding)’ Category

Guest Commentary: The Unholy “Holy Ghost Fire” of Todd White and the NAR

By Tony Baugh

The Bible is clear that in the last days, just before Jesus returns, there will be false prophets, deceiving through false signs and lying wonders. There is no greater present-day evidence of this than the NAR (New Apostolic Reformation). The Ground Zero of the NAR is Bethel Church in Redding, California, with whom Todd White is strongly affiliated. White speaks at their conferences and is very tight with Bethel Church’s commander-in-chief and senior pastor, Bill Johnson, whose “School of Supernatural Ministry” offers courses on doing precisely what Todd White does, as well as “teach” people to be ordained as “Prophets” and “Apostles” (if you are willing to pay their hefty tuition). Upon completion of the courses, Bill Johnson himself “Knights” graduates.

Bethel (and the NAR at large) inducts youth through the emotionalism of repetitive, hypnotic “worship” music, which has since morphed into the “Jesus Culture Movement,” a rapidly rising youth movement spreading the NAR agenda like wildfire across the globe. Some of the techniques used are: Getting kids “high” on the music, telling them it’s the Holy Ghost moving, running the kids in lines through “fire tunnels” during intermission, laying hands on them and imparting the Kundalini Serpent Spirit . . . where they often fall down, twitch, convulse, oftentimes as if burning in agony, all in the name of “Jesus,” calling it “Holy Ghost Fire,” yelling commands to the Holy Ghost such as, “MORE! MORE! MORE LORD!!! . . . DOUBLE IT!! DOUBLE IT!!”, etc.

Todd White

This is precisely what Todd White does, always “calling down fire” in the name of “Jesus,” which is also precisely what we are warned will be one of the great deceptions of the Beast . . . calling down fire from heaven . . . aka: false signs and lying wonders (Revelation 13:13). Jesus Himself said it would be a deception so powerful, that if it were possible, it would deceive even the very elect.

In Bethel’s best-selling book (co-authored by Bill Johnson), The Physics of Heaven (sold in their campus bookstore alongside a plethora of Jesus Culture CDs and a multitude of NAR authors), it states that Christians are “’taking back truths’ from the New Age that really belong to citizens of the Kingdom of God. (Kindle Locations 407-408).

One of the Bethel’s own “prophets” trained by their Supernatural School unknowingly prophesied to a real practicing witch, telling her “[God] is pleased with you!” and “implored [her] to keep doing what [she] was doing.” (http://www.patheos.com/blogs/agora/2015/07/born-again-witch-witches-at-a-pentecostal-church-healings-and-prophecies/)

There are multiple videos and photos evidencing Bethel students on campus field trips, who take classes on “Grave Soaking/Sucking, as well as the Johnsons (Bill and wife Benny) traveling to grave sites to “suck” or “soak” the anointing of the dead from faith healers like William Branham, the very godfather of the NAR, whom they worship like a god and who has multiple, easily verifiable, failed, false prophesies. This practice is an act the Word of God calls “Necromancy” (contacting the dead), condemning it as an abomination to God (Deuteronomy 18:11).

Todd White Receives Kundalini “Annointing” From Benny Hinn

Another stunning fact is that Todd White received his Kundalini “anointing” from Benny Hinn. When Hinn laid hands on Todd White, Todd fell back, and Hinn repeatedly and creepily told him he was going to be part of a “great youth movement.” This is verifiable on video.

What Christians may find difficult to believe is that Satan himself can indeed heal in the name of “Jesus,” but it’s “another Jesus” (2 Corinthians 11:4). To verify this, Johanna Michaelsen’s book or video testimony The Beautiful Side of Evil, is highly recommended. Her books was the catalyst that delivered author/speaker Warren B. Smith out of the New Age. Both he and Michaelsen are early pioneers of exposing New Age mysticism’s creeping into modern Christianity, largely and sadly unaware by most.

As an ex-New Ager myself, I can attest that psychics, Yogi’s, Reiki masters, and witches employ the exact same techniques as the NAR, by tapping into the demonic realm of unclean spirits, who supply very personal, intimate information (such as certain ailments or sickness they may have) about the indviduals they approach (sort of like an invisible phone line direct to the demonic spirit realm. These “mediums” also employ flattery, telling people how “amazing” they are and how much “Jesus love them.”  This immediately impresses the recipients, who the mediums then asks if they can lay hands on them to heal them through the power of the “Holy Ghost,” while doing it in the name of “Jesus” (another “Jesus” . . . aka Satan). The recipients often feel “heat” or “electricity” (common sensations associated with the New Age practice of Reiki). The recipient are told it is “Holy Ghost Fire” and that they just felt the power or even just received the Holy Ghost. Generally, not one word about sin, repentance, or even the Gospel is used.

Jesus Christ said in the end times, many false prophets would come as wolves in sheep’s clothing and that we would know them by their fruits. And the greatest evidence of these falsehoods is that there is always “another Gospel” preached, void of the vital messages that save souls, which Jesus Christ Himself preached: repentance from sin, judgment, hell, fear of God vs. the NAR “Holy Ghost” which is all about an obsession with healing via “signs and wonders,” power, seducing people through the emotionalism of music and the flattery of telling people how amazing they are with no conviction of sin and no contriteness or brokenness of spirit before a holy God, even though Jesus told us the ministry of the Holy Spirit of truth is to “reprove [convict] the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment (John 16:8), a message absent from these mouths of these “faith healers.'”

A false prophet is not always known by what he does preach but often by what he doesn’t preach.

There is “another Gospel,” “another Spirt,” and “another Jesus.” In the warning of the Bible, it describing precisely the “Jesus” being promoted by Todd White and the rest of the NAR.

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.—Matthew 7:22-23

The most horrifying words in the entire universe:

For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. —Jesus Christ, Matthew 24:24

Used and edited with permission.

Related Information:

The New Age Propensities of Bethel Church’s Bill Johnson

Beware of Bethel: A Brief Summary of Bill Johnson’s Unbiblical Teachings

Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture

 

Letter to the Editor: Bethel’s Attempt to Make “Same Old” Teachings Sound More “Mainstream”

To Lighthouse Trails Editors:

Bill Johnson of Bethel Church; Photo credit: Christianity Today | http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2016/may/cover-story-inside-popular-controversial-bethel-church.html

I wanted to write you about Bethel’s trend of trying to make their teachings sound more “mainstream” evangelical, even though their aberrant teachings are clearly not (as LT has pointed out over the past few years through booklets, blogs, etc.).

Bethel has gotten more sophisticated with their lingo and presentation of some rehashed Latter Rain heresies and “revival” pep-speak, but the calculated supposed “upgrade” that has escalated in the past few years has been an attempt to repackage their same old “kingdom-now,” Christian dominionism,” 7 mountain mandate,” into more palatable, mainstream language.

Why? Probably in an attempt to increase its already huge following (that continues to multiply over the Internet and worldwide: including its affiliated “Jesus Culture” band).

Who are they targeting? Not just young people who may not be familiar enough with God’s Word to discern error and unbiblical teachings, but Bethel is also targeting the unsuspecting, struggling evangelical who may not be familiar with some of the charismatic lingo, and “signs and wonders” and who are being enticed by the “power” and “revival” that Bethel falsely promises at every turn . . .

Here are two items with Pastor Rod Page (pastor of Lewiston Community Church, Lewiston, CA–20 miles from Bethel Church in Redding, CA), speaking about God’s Word, God’s heart, and God’s truth regarding those entangled, unaware that Bethel’s teachings (Kris Valloton, etc.,) are unbiblical and dangerous:

2) Link to TBC Radio program: “Has Bethel Church Been Upgraded?” with Rod Page Part 1: https://www.thebereancall.org/content/has-bethel-church-been-upgraded-rod-page-part-1

3) Link to TBC Radio program: “Has Bethel Church Been Upgraded?” with Rod Page Part 2: https://www.thebereancall.org/content/has-bethel-church-been-upgraded-rod-page-part-2

Sincerely,

Concerned Believer

 

Pictures Say a “Million” Words About Bethel – “As Above, So Below”

Dear Lighthouse Trails:

So Bethel Church leadership cannot feign ignorance on this phrase as their “Physics of Heaven” shows they are thoroughly versed in New age teachings.  I was on Facebook scrolling the  news feed when I saw a sponsored ad for Bethel advertising their coming “Open Heaven” Conference.   Well within the first 10 seconds the first thing to appear on the screen was As above, So below. I’m sure Ray Yungen would find this interesting as well.

I find it extremely creepy  as they have a large white pyramid atop their prayer house (see the photos below). How they get away with this rank occultism is beyond me, unless they are already under strong delusion.

In Christ Alone,

RA

Bethels prayer house with pyramid

http://static.panoramio.com/photos/original/19679779.jpg

prayer house at night.  pyramid glows red

http://static.panoramio.com/photos/original/27178584.jpg

inside prayer house- directly under the pyramid

https://emeraldscribe21.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/2014-01-11-14-58-22.jpg

(Used in accordance of the U.S. Fair Use Act for the purposes of review, critique, and education)

bethel-prayer-room-3 bethel-prayer-room-2 bethel-prayer-room-1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 For more information about Bethel Church, please review the following:

BOOKLET: The New Age Propensities of Bethel Church’s Bill Johnson

BOOKLET: Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture

The Physics of Heaven by Larry DeBruyn

NEW BOOKLET: Signs & Wonders! Five Things You Should Consider

NEW BOOKLET: Signs & Wonders! Five Things You Should Consider by David Dombrowski is our newest Lighthouse Trails Booklet Tract.  The Booklet is 10 pages long and sells for $1.95 for single copies. Quantity discounts are as much as 50% off retail. Our Booklets are designed to give away to others or for your own personal use. Below is the content of the booklet. To order copies of Signs & Wonders! Five Things You Should Consider, click here. 

BKT-DD-sw-sSigns & Wonders! Five Things You Should Consider

By David Dombrowski

Setting Things Up With Great Delusion

Jesus taught his disciples that in the last days, a time of mass delusion will come upon the earth. He said:

For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall show signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect. But take ye heed: behold, I have foretold you all things. (Mark 13:22-23; emphasis added)

Likewise, Paul spoke of this time when he said:

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils. (1 Timothy 4:1)

If we look at what is happening in the world today, the only logical conclusion is that we have already entered into that period of history. The world is going through a mystical paradigm shift where an increasingly high number of people are engaging in occultic mystical practices which are leading them into a New Age all-paths-lead-to-God kind of mentality.

This is not only happening in the world, but it is happening in the church as well. It is shocking to see that doctrines and values formerly held sacred are now being discarded. Many Christian leaders today have replaced the reading and study of Scripture with having spiritual experiences or what Jesus referred to above as signs and wonders. In effect, multitudes of Christians are being led to believe that if they can have some type of spiritual experience or witness a miracle, that will bear more validity than the words of Scripture itself.

What we have now generated is a delusion so great that if one has an “experience” that contradicts the Bible, one will hold the experience as valid and not the Bible because the experience is seen as tangible and therefore more real. But this is an insult to our God because as David points out in a Psalm:

I will worship toward thy hold temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name. (Psalm 138:2; emphasis added)

God holds His Word in highest esteem as being entirely truthful, but many would rather trust and rely on their own experiences as their standard for truth.

We have become like the masses in former centuries who believed that the world is flat (because it appears to be flat), while the Bible itself refers to it as a globe (Isaiah 40:22). Frankly, in a practical day-to-day sense, it makes no difference to me whether the earth be flat or round, except perhaps a fear of falling off the edge if I went too far, but when it comes to spiritual matters, the truth is essential as to where I will be spending eternity. You see, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ Himself, who is all Truth and paid the price to take us to heaven; but we also have a deceiver, Satan, who is the father of lies and is intent on leading us to hell.

It is imperative to realize that not all paths lead to heaven, or should I say, there is only one path to God, and Jesus is that Path (John 14:6). All the other paths of the world believe that man is intrinsically good and can therefore earn his way to heaven. Only the Gospel reveals the truth that we were born sinners, and our transgressions have alienated us from God; but Jesus paid the price for our sins, and through His death and resurrection we have, by faith, salvation (having been forgiven), righteousness (imputed and not earned), peace with God, and the grace for holy living (being “raised with Christ”).

Nothing could make the enemy of our souls happier than to steal away our soul, and his primary way of doing this is through deception because Satan is a master of lies.

Are All Signs and Wonders From the Same Source?

Knowing that we are in a time of great delusion, let us focus here on one aspect of it, where Jesus referred to it in Mark 13 as the realm of signs and wonders.

In doing a Scripture search on the words “signs” and “wonders” appearing together, I expected to find only a few references but was surprised to find eighteen references in the Old Testament and fourteen references in the New Testament. The majority of these references in both the Old and New Testaments were used in a positive sense. In the Old Testament, the most common examples were those referring to how Moses delivered the Israelites through signs and wonders, while in the New Testament, the most common examples were those of God confirming the preaching of the Gospel by the apostles through signs and wonders. When used in a negative sense, the words “signs” and “wonders” were usually used together in a prophetic warning to avoid false leaders and prophets.

Now, the point I wish to make here is that we cannot make a sweeping statement saying that all signs and wonders are bad, nor can we say that they are all good; rather we need to look beyond the physical manifestations and determine the source from which they come. But in the cases of Moses and the apostles, God was confirming the ministry and message of these men. Too often, however, signs and wonders are unquestioningly accepted as being “from God.”

As a former Catholic, I can remember stories from my youth up of miraculous signs taken as divine confirmation that God has spoken, be it the apparitions of Mary giving messages that contradict Scripture or of communion wafers that bleed or pulse contradicting the message of the Gospel (Jesus clearly said that the “flesh profiteth nothing” (John 6:63) and the book of Hebrews speaks of a sacrifice made once for all time—Hebrews 9:27-28;10:10,12,14). In the case of the Catholic Church, there are strange manifestations that inevitably glorify man, and those who perform such wonders bear a message that requires redemption through human performance as opposed to grace by faith alone. It is not always easy at the surface level to recognize the meaning behind a sign or wonder, but we do have the Holy Spirit and the Word of God as witnesses for us.

A key passage from the Old Testament that strictly forbids the unquestioning acceptance of all signs and wonders is the following:

If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, and the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him.” (Deuteronomy 13:1-4; emphasis added)

Notice how explicit these instructions are about maintaining a faithful and unwavering devotion to the Lord even when the sign or wonder has “come to pass!” It is never enough that a sign or wonder happens; it must always be tested as to whether or not it supports and confirms God’s Word.

Yet, for many people today (including many Christians), if a strange, paranormal manifestation occurs, that is evidence enough that it must be from God without any recognition or acknowledgment that dark supernatural forces can do these things. For example, the manifestations of holy laughter, “slaying in the Spirit,” jerkings, convulsions, twisting, contortions, and animal-like behaviors have all been witnessed under the “ministering” of eastern gurus who draw on kundalini energy (serpent power) to do their work. And, as discerning believers, when we listen to the doctrine or teaching of these ministers (who are so wrapped up in manifestations that they hardly preach at all), we can only conclude that these are wolves in sheep’s clothing deceiving and being deceived. Many of the ministers actually even mock the preaching of God’s Word and arrogantly proclaim or imply that because they have the power to do these things, they are greater than all preachers. But God has chosen to use the “foolishness of preaching to save them that believe” (1 Corinthians 1:21).

Now, I’m not saying that these ministers necessarily know they are wolves. For the most part, they believe they are doing God a service. But as Jesus pointed out, many ministers are just hirelings in that they “careth not for the sheep” (John 10:13); they will fleece the flock for gain, but they will not lay down their lives for the sheep. Jesus said, “I lay down my life for the sheep” (John 10:15).

Preparing the Way . . . But For Who?

Unbeknownst to themselves, many of today’s ministers are paving the way for the Antichrist. They are like John the Baptists for the Antichrist as their efforts are actually preparing the hearts of the people for such a leader. This is especially true of ministers who minimize the preaching of sound doctrine and maximize on manifestations “from God.” I say this because the Antichrist will be a master of signs and wonders, which will actually be his trademark and likely the primary way he will get the world to believe in him. In speaking of the coming Antichrist, Paul had this to say:

And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. (2 Thessalonians 2:8-10)

Meanwhile, people’s hearts are being conditioned for this figure who will integrate the economic, political, and religious sectors together under a worldwide peace plan while confirming his authority and power through lying wonders. It will be a “grand day” for the world as millions will be duped by a man with a charismatic mantle and anointing like unto Adolf Hitler who stirred up a nation; but this time it will be the whole world. In fact, there are many similarities today between our country (the USA) and much of the world with that of the mindset of much of society in Germany prior to Hitler coming into power: In both cases, we see an emergence of anti-Semitism, even among those claiming to be Christians; churches and Bible colleges are becoming more and more liberal and humanistic in theology and rule; spiritual apostasy can be seen everywhere; and political powers are bringing about radical changes to the infrastructure of our society. At Lighthouse Trails, as we watch the pace of things accelerating, we often wonder if we may have less time than we think.

This is a time in history when it is imperative for Christian believers to stay alert and warn all we can about the delusion coming upon the world and the apostasy taking place in the church. The future will unfold as predicted in the Bible, but we can be prepared and help prepare others for whatever comes.

Signs and Wonders, and A True Minister of God

As for the signs and wonders delusion, it is important to remember that if someone performs a sign or a wonder, he is operating beyond the realm of his own strength and mere physical laws, but we cannot automatically assume he is operating from God just as we cannot assume he is operating from the demonic realm. To help us discern, we can apply the test of 1 John 4:1-3 and ask ourselves what is the message of the person performing the wonder? Is he glorifying God and promoting the Gospel, or is he glorifying himself as if he were greater than all other ministers? The mark of a true minister of God is humility and not pride. Jesus said of the true John the Baptist, “Among those that are born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist” (Luke 7:28). Here is a man who was anointed of the Holy Spirit while still in his mother’s womb (Luke 1:15, 41). Yet, we also read in John 10:41 that “John [the Baptist] did no miracle.” John was a unique individual, and we need more like him. When he said of Jesus, “this my joy therefore is fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:29-30), in a few words, John indicated his attributes. He was a humble man with the right priorities who remained obedient to his mission. He did not need to do a sign or a wonder because he revealed Jesus and had prepared the way for Him.

The Purpose of Signs and Wonders

Signs and wonders are performed for a purpose.

In the Old Testament, they were performed to deliver God’s people:

Which hast set signs and wonders in the land of Egypt, even unto this day, and in Israel, and among other men. . . . And hast brought forth thy people Israel out of the land of Egypt with signs, and with wonders. (Jeremiah 32:20-21)

In the New Testament, Jesus performed signs and wonders to show that He was approved of and from God. Peter spoke of this on the day of Pentecost:

Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs. (Acts 2:22)

The apostles likewise did signs and wonders:

And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. (Acts 2:43)

The book of Hebrews makes it clear that these signs and wonders were done to confirm the Gospel message:

How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation [the Gospel message]; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will? (Hebrews 2:3-4)

Yet, we know that Jesus rebuked the seeking of signs and wonders where the Gospel is not received and believed:

Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe. (John 4:48)

And this is the way it is today. People flock to witness manifestations, but they will not flock to hear the Gospel—to hear about sin and judgment and faith in the finished work of Christ on the Cross. The fact is, we do not need to be seeking signs and wonders because that is not where the real power lies. The prophet Elijah, a man who called fire down from heaven to burn his sacrifice, subsequently had an encounter with God while hiding in a cave. As the Lord passed by, He sent powerful manifestations: first, in a strong wind that “rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord” (1 Kings 19:11); second, there was an earthquake; and third, there was a fire. Yet, it says that the Lord was not in any of these, and Elijah remained unmoved from his fear and despair. But, after the fire, there was “a still small voice” (vs. 12) and then we read, “And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave” (vs. 13).

The point is really quite simple. While God can demonstrate His power in marvelous and supernatural ways, it was the word of the Lord that brought Elijah out of the cave, encouraged him, instructed him, and sent him on his way. And this is the problem with signs and wonders that are not accompanied by and supported by God’s Word; nothing really changes of lasting value. People may witness signs and wonders, but that is not going to bring personal transformation or eternal salvation to them. Only when a life has been surrendered to the Lord through faith in hearing the Gospel do we have changes that are of a true and lasting spiritual value. We know that the apostles went out to preach the Gospel, and signs and wonders followed them—the emphasis being on the Gospel. Paul made it clear in his letters that the power that changes lives for eternity is in the Gospel. It is the power to save:

For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. (1 Corinthians 1:18)

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. (Romans 1:16)

I know there are people reading this who have great needs and are hoping for a word of encouragement to get through a particular situation. And there always will be needs of one sort or another where at times it seems that it would take a miracle to get through the present challenge. If you feel this way, let me say this: God is faithful, and He is there for those who hope in His mercy (Psalm 147:11). But as Christians, let us be careful not to be caught up in fear and worry that would rob us of our effectiveness for God and of the abundant life God has for us. Jesus said:

The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. (John 10:10)

Remember also that Jesus said:

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things [our needs] shall be added unto you. (Matthew 6:33)

God is faithful, and He can be depended upon to deliver us in whatever trials we face. Peter writes in his epistle:

Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator. (1 Peter 4:19)

We are on a journey through life, and there are many obstacles along the path that would slow us down and rob us of our attention to the things of the Lord. Let us not lose sight of our destination.

To order copies of Signs & Wonders! Five Things You Should Consider, click here. 

Ichabod Fulfilled in the Body of Christ

LTRJ Note: Some who read this article and other similar articles by Roger Oakland and LT accuse us of “lumping” all Calvary Chapels together saying they are all bad. We find this line of reasoning troubling. Lighthouse Trails historically has challenged many denominations (and the leaders within those groups), Calvary Chapel being one of them. Because Calvary Chapel has claimed it is not a denomination, there has been this expected idea by some who contact us that they are so loosely connected to each other that one Calvary Chapel church should not in any way be implicated with other Calvary Chapel churches.But the fact is, if a church takes on a particular name for the benefit of being associated with that name or group, then it seems unfair to expect that no one associate them with that group. Does this mean that all Calvary Chapels are going astray because some are? Of course not. Just like not all Baptist or Nazarene churches are going astray because some are. Calvary Chapel, as a group or denomination, should not be singled out for undue criticism, but neither should it be excused from criticism. And if a church has the name and association of Calvary Chapel, then that church must bear some of the responsibility for the leaders of that group, just like any other denomination or ministry. While Lighthouse Trails does not say that a particular local church should break away from a denomination if some of the denomination is going astray (because that is a decision only that church can make), we do say that pastors and church members who see their group or denomination going astray should speak up, not be silent, and call out those who are leading their group toward apostasy. Roger Oakland and Chris Lawson, both long-time Calvary Chapel ministers/teachers, finally left the Calvary Chapel movement and speak about the problems within the movement in an effort to help Christians stay the course of truth. Lighthouse Trails supports their efforts.

By Roger Oakland
Understand the Times, International

Roger Oakland

Roger Oakland

This commentary will be short. It will also be clear and to the point. There are three things I am compelled to share.

First, I am often accused of being a Calvary Chapel basher. Not so. For those of you who have read my biography, Let There Be Light, you know I first began working with Calvary Chapel in 1989 at Chuck Smith’s personal invitation. Chuck had asked me to bring my teachings on evolutionary thinking and the New Age (and how both were affecting the world and the church) to Calvary Chapel pastors. Thus, I moved my family from our farm in Saskatchewan to Southern California.

I had only been with Calvary Chapel less than a year when I began seeing serious problems within the movement. In my book, I described the situation:

From 1998 on, the battle I faced in southern California . . . only intensified . . . A number of things simply did not line up with my “farming” way of seeing things. Many times I was reminded of my dad’s famous statement: “The reason I am a farmer is that I would rather deal with nature than human nature.” This became etched in my mind over and over as I saw the signs of a Christian church being run more like a corporation than a New Testament church. . . . Since I had traveled throughout America and the world in Calvary Chapel circles since 1989, giving me opportunity to make observations, I didn’t have to be a forensic scientist to see when something was wrong. [1]

You can read more about my years at Calvary Chapel in Let There Be Light, but I bring this up because of being accused of only wanting to hurt Calvary Chapel. Nothing could be further from the truth. I’ve sometimes been asked, “Why did you stay so long at Calvary Chapel if problems began surfacing within the first year.” I explain this in my book:

Well, that’s simple—I truly was convinced God had brought me to Calvary Chapel to be a blessing, to teach those at Calvary Chapel about creation versus evolution and the ramifications of believing in evolution, and to help prepare and equip Calvary Chapel against spiritual deception and a great coming apostasy. With such conviction and my love for the Calvary Chapel pastors, I never felt the freedom to just walk away from the movement, at least not until I had done all I could possibly do. My farmer heritage gave me the tenacity to not give up, while the Lord in my life helped me to persevere. [2]

While I have been accused of being divisive and unloving, the fact is, to say nothing when people are in danger is the most unloving thing of all. Bottom line is, at Understand The Times, we have attempted to promote the truth, not just to Calvary Chapel but to the body of Christ at large. When light shines into the darkness, the darkness does not like the light. You will find this in the Bible where we read:

The light shall be dark in his tabernacle, and his candle shall be put out with him. (Job 18:6) Click here to continue reading and for endnotes.

NEW BOOKLET: Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture

Introducing the newest Lighthouse Trails author, Danny Frigulti and his Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture Lighthouse Trails Booklet The Booklet is 16 pages long and sells for $1.95 for single copies. Quantity discounts are as much as 50% off retail. Our Booklets are designed to give away to others or for your own personal use.  Below is the content of the booklet. To order copies of Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture, click here.

 Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture

bkt-df-wf-4By Danny Frigulti

Since the 1970s, a growing and captivating faith-teaching movement has saturated the world. This movement continues to emphasize “faith Scriptures” as a foundation for encouraging Christians to have strong and unwavering faith when speaking, confessing, or declaring God’s Word for health and wealth. Most people refer to this faith movement as the “Word of Faith,” and many use Romans 10:8 and 17 to lay a foundation for their faith belief. These read:

But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach.

So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

In this booklet, we will look at some common Word of Faith teachings and compare these with Scripture to discern the definition of their doctrines. This will verify whether any person or ministry is preaching doctrines of truth or false doctrine. Some faith-teaching ministries do not claim to be Word of Faith ministries but still teach false faith doctrine. Therefore, our focus will also be on refuting ten common false faith teachings found worldwide.

1) Identifying the Sources of Sickness and Disease

Word of Faith teachings promote the belief that all sickness and disease is from Satan and his demons. Therefore, God has not and will not chastise His people with sickness. They also say that no Christian should be sick, and if sickness happens, it is because of 1) sin in your life; 2) weak faith; or 3) you are not walking in love. We will first look at various Scriptures to see if demons are responsible for all sickness and disease. Also, we will view Scripture to find the Lord’s role in any area of sickness. Then we will look at verses where servants of God were sick and see if sin, weak faith, or lack of love are mentioned as the cause of their ailment.

A verse Word of Faith teachers distort and use to convince themselves and their followers that all sickness comes from demons is part of Matthew 18:16 which reads “…that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.” Jesus is quoting from Deuteronomy 19:15. The obvious context is two witnesses who confirm testimony about sin, not testimony of sickness. Frederick K. C. Price ignores what Jesus teaches about trespass/sin in Matthew 18:16. He selects two passages where demons cause affliction (Acts 10:38; Luke 13:11-14) and says, “I am perfectly convinced, from these two scriptures, that sickness and disease is of Satan.”1 Acts 10:38 is to be understood as Jesus “doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil.” This is not a verse that teaches all sickness and disease are from the devil because forthcoming Scriptures in this section will prove otherwise.

Others who teach that all sickness is from Satan are: Larry Huch, “All sickness, no matter where it comes from—birth, inheritance, injury—is from the devil;”2 Guillermo Maldonado, “According to Scripture, every sickness is directly related with demon activity;”3 and E. W. Kenyon (1867-1948), “Every disease is of the Adversary.”4 Though the Bible does cite instances where demons are shown to be the cause of different physical problems (Matthew 12:22; 17:14-21; Mark 5:1-16; Luke 4:40-41), Scripture also reveals other sources of sickness that are not from demons, as will be shown.

In Matthew 8:1-4, a leper comes to Jesus to be cleansed of the disease. Jesus does not rebuke or cast a demon out of the person. The Law teaching about leprosy in Leviticus 13-14 never states that all leprosy is caused by demons. Matthew also mentions the mother of Peter’s wife was sick with a fever, and Jesus “touched her hand, and the fever left her” (verses 14-15). This Scripture says “the fever left her.” A demon did not leave her. More scriptural proof that some diseases are not demonic are Matthew 9:27-30 and Mark 7:32-35; 8:22-25.

There are several biblical examples of God directly using disease/sickness to chastise His people, if needed, as cited in Leviticus 26:15-25; Numbers 11:33-34; 12:1-15; Deuteronomy 28:15-29; 1 Chronicles 21:1-14. Also, the New Testament confirms that God uses sickness, and even death, to punish Christians who choose to sin (Acts 5:1-11; 1 Corinthians 11:20-32). And because of sin, our corrupt/cursed creation is another source of sickness (Romans 8:20-22). Excessive sun exposure causes skin cancer. Air pollution causes respiratory ailments. Contaminated water and food cause various physical ailments and sometimes death. From the Bible, we have proof that demons are not responsible for all sickness.

Furthermore, the teaching that sin, weak faith, or not walking in love are the reasons Christians get sick is unscriptural as verified in Philippians 2:25-30; 1 Timothy 5:23, and 2 Timothy 4:20. None of these false faith beliefs/teachings are found as causes of the ailment/sickness in these verses. Still, Creflo Dollar writes, “Have you noticed that every time God deals with sickness and disease, He deals with sin as well?”5 Jesus never taught the sin of an individual always caused every disease but actually refuted the idea in John 9:1-3.

2) Discerning True Faith

Hebrews 11:6 states that “without faith it is impossible to please [God],” with the remainder of the chapter describing biblical characters as examples. These examples show that His servants had knowledge of His will and trusted and obeyed Him of whom some were “destitute and afflicted” (vs. 37). Where false faith followers create worldwide deception is found in their improper belief of verse 1 which reads, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” They believe faith is a spiritual substance Christians can speak into existence and direct, and the “faith substance” of their belief will cause the Lord to give them the content of their words, such as healing and money. The Greek word for substance is hupostasis and translates: assurance, confidence, substance.6

When studying the verses in Hebrews 11, it is obvious that the people mentioned did not “speak by faith” and declare their will to be done as the substance of their belief. The substance of their belief was obedient response to God’s will as revealed personally or through His messengers of choice. They followed God’s spoken/written Word with confidence and assurance. God didn’t follow their spoken word. This is where false faith believers are deceived, because they insist if you have faith without doubt, God must honor your faith. No verse teaches the Lord is obligated to man’s faith level (Isaiah 64:8). Our faith in God should accept His will for us whether or not it means health, success, and prosperity; Paul is an example of one who knew “both how to be abased and . . . how to abound . . . to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and suffer need” (Philippians 4:12).

I will list some faith teachings from Word of Faith teachers/authors, and you will see that their personal definitions of faith are not supported by Scripture:

Have or receive God’s faith. This is the same faith that God Almighty used to create the universe.7

Each time God spoke, He released His faith—the creative power to bring His words to pass.8

Every born-again believer has the faith of God in him NOW.9

You can’t build without substance. He took words; faith-filled words were God’s substance . . . God filled His words with faith. He used His words as containers to hold His faith and contain that spiritual force and transport it out there into the vast darkness by saying, “Light be!”10

Such ideas and beliefs are not found anywhere in Scripture. Teaching that God needs faith to create strips Him of His sovereignty to simply speak anything into existence as He wills. The word “faith” is never mentioned in Genesis 1! God speaks. It is done (Isaiah 44:24; 45:12).

However, misled Word-Faith people insist when Jesus said, “Have faith in God” (Mark 11:22), He meant “Have the faith of God” or “the God kind of faith.” They teach this to convince people to believe they can call miraculous things into existence like God does (Romans 4:17). A look at the Greek will show the correct translation is “Have faith in God.” Renowned Greek scholar A. T. Robertson taught the Greek word structure for “Have faith in God” (echete pistin theou) is translated “Have faith in God” because of what is called an objective genitive in the Greek.11 An objective genitive means the noun (in this statement, theou) is the object of the action. God is the object of faith in Mark 11:22, not your faith, and “the God kind of faith” is the kind of faith that is focused on God. Your faith is never to be the object of your faith. Jesus didn’t teach “Develop faith in your words”12 as some have done for years. Such a belief leads to word-faith idolatry.

To follow unbiblical faith (i.e., God always responds to your words of faith for what you claim) is to embrace presumption—a disastrous false faith belief. Concerning presumption, the psalmist said:

Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression. (Psalm 19:13)

Notice the words “great transgression.” This sin has serious consequences. Presumptuous sins were punishable by death in the Old Covenant (Deuteronomy 17:12-13; 18:20-22). In 2 Peter 2:10, presumption reveals those who are self-willed, not God-willed. Presumption graphically describes the heart of false Word of Faith belief because it sets itself against the true faith of Scripture. True biblical faith always submits to God, trusts in His guidance, and never speaks presumptuously, and is rooted in Scripture.

3) Jesus and the Teaching of Positive Confession

A popular Word of Faith teaching is “positive confession,” also called “confessing God’s Word,” “name it (what you want from God) and claim it,” “confession of the Word brings possession of what your faith believes,” “faith decrees and declarations,” and “You can have what you say.”13 The last sentence gives “positive confession” its definition. Obviously, this doctrine has nothing to do with biblical prayer. It’s all about finding verses you believe God has already ordained for you or a specific need you believe you’re entitled to claim. Then you “confess” your faith claim out loud. Common “positive confessions” usually refer to physical healing and money because Word-Faith people believe the shed blood (death and resurrection of Jesus) guarantees them not only the forgiveness of sins but also health and wealth. This heretical atonement belief will be refuted later.

Though the word confess indicates a strong conviction in what one believes, there is no citation in the New Testament where Christians are encouraged to use “positive confession” for healing or money. First Timothy 6:12-13 and Hebrews 3:1; 4:14; 10:21-23 refer to a Christian’s confession of Jesus as the Son of God, High Priest, or holding on to the faith. None of these verses teach “positive confession” for speaking forth healings, miracles, or prosperity.

Some unbiblical “confession” teachings for health and wealth circulating the world are:

“If you want to change your life, you have to change your confession. The miracle is in your mouth” (John Osteen 1921-1999).14 Miracles are by God’s will, not man’s mouth (1 Corinthians 12:10-11).

“Confession is to your faith as thrust is to an airplane.”15 No verse proof is given.

Yet, Word of Faith believers proclaim “positive confession” for health, wealth, and miracles, because Jesus said “he shall have whatsoever he saith” in Mark 11:23:

For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.

In this verse, Jesus did teach you can have what you say if you do not doubt in your heart and believe what you say will come to pass. However, there are scriptural guidelines that always pertain to answered prayer or miracles. Jesus said, “he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone: for I do always those things that please him” (John 8:29). Jesus did only as directed by His Father (John 5:19-20) so He withered the fig tree (Mark 11:20-21). We must ask according to His will (1 John 5:14-15). Miracles happen according to God’s will, not our faith-determined will (1 Corinthians 12:10-11).

Mark 11:23 is not a step-by-step formula for daily miracles. It must be the Holy Spirit’s will for the miracle to occur. Exodus 14:14-22 is an example of “You can have what you say.” Moses first heard from God, and then he told the sea to part. It obeyed Moses because God had willed this to happen in advance.

Finally, two things are important to remember 1) the words “positive confession” are not found together in the Bible; and 2) Jesus never used “positive confession” when teaching us to pray, request, do miracles, ask, or call upon God for anything. Obedient Christians will not use “positive confession” because it is unbiblical.

4) Creative Visualization

For decades, Word of Faith people have taught “creative visualization” to enhance a Christian’s prayer life where a person is encouraged to create a picture or image (also called mental imagery) in their mind as if it has already happened as they desire and seek the help of supernatural power to make their created vision manifest/happen. This is combined with “positive confession” to activate the supernatural spiritual realm. When done, these two components of visual and verbal effort have the spiritual potential to connect users to the wrong spiritual realm, a realm where demons are found.

Normal visualization imagines pictures of events in our mind that have occurred or might happen (daydreaming). Athletes picture or imagine, with concentrated focus, the free throw going into the basket or picture the body movement needed to perform in a specific event. These everyday examples of picturing something in the mind are simply ways of thinking something through and do not engage supernatural powers for something to become a reality.

David Yonggi Cho, a Korean pastor, teaches “Through visualizing and dreaming you can incubate your future and hatch the results.”16 Charles Capps (1934-2014) taught, “The best way to get the image in you of the thing hoped for, is with your own words.”17 “Creative visualization” is actually an occultic practice (secret, hidden things) that is commonly used in magic as shown in the following references:

“What is the purpose of creative visualization? . . . creative visualization is a key component to making magick.”18

“Creative visualization is one of the Most Occult Spiritual practices in the world.”19

Creative Visualization is the name for a Magical-Occult-Operation.20

These three sources show the occult/demonic nature of “creative visualization.” “Prayer picturing” (creative visualization) is not biblical prayer; it’s occult prayer. Christians are to pray (ask) in Jesus’ name (John 14:13) and in accordance with God’s will (1 John 5:14-15), not in accordance with our pictured and positive confession will.

5) Financial Angels

Angels are a common Word of Faith topic. Many believe we can use Hebrews 1:14 to command the angels around us to get money for needs and ministry. This verse says angels are “sent forth [by God] to minster.” God sends them “to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation” (emphasis added). Therefore, they listen to “the voice of His Word” (Psalm 103:20-21), not man’s word. Here are some unbiblical teachings about money angels at your verbal command from Kenneth and Gloria Copeland:

In the name of Jesus, I take authority over the money I need . . . I command you to come to me…Ministering spirits, you go and cause it to come.21

The angels are in the earth to prosper you.22

Your words put the angels to work on your behalf to bring to pass whatever you say. . . . The angels are waiting on your words.23

[W]hen you use the Word in the name of Jesus, they are obligated to follow your command.24

Even the late Kenneth E. Hagin (1917-2003) was convinced angels are for gathering money. He declared that Jesus personally spoke to him25 and said the following: “Claim whatever you need or want. Say, ‘Satan, take your hands off my finances.’ Then say, ‘Go, ministering spirits, and cause the money to come.’”26 This couldn’t have been the real Jesus who spoke to Mr. Hagin because the real Jesus knows the context of Hebrews 1:14 and also knows angels are subject to Him only (1 Peter 3:22). His chosen apostles didn’t have this convenience, and Jesus didn’t tell angels to get Him money during His ministry.

6) Seed Faith for $

In the last few decades, there has been a significant increase in televangelists devoting more air time to preaching faith in financial prosperity rather than faith in the true Gospel. Financial “seed faith” planting is preached constantly. These false preachers proclaim that if you plant a “seed faith investment” in their ministry, God will bless you with a financial return if you have faith to receive it. Here’s the problem; Jesus and His disciples never taught the Gospel was a financial system where money given to the work of the Gospel guaranteed your money back and even more, if you have faith. In 2 Corinthians 9:10, Paul says the seed sown (money) is multiplied for Gospel use, and increases “the fruits of your righteousness.” Paul does not say the “seed faith donation” will be money multiplied back to the givers if they have enough faith.

Still, some insist that if you plant a seed of financial faith in their ministry, “you can receive a 30, 60, or 100 fold financial blessing.”27 They set up the unlearned listener by combining Mark 4:20 which states seed sown on good ground “brings forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred” with Mark 10:29-30. These verses cite various blessings, including persecutions but do not talk about exchanging faith for money. The seed is the Word of God (Luke 8:11).

7) 3 John 2—Health and Wealth?

Globally, false prosperity preachers insist 3 John 2 is God’s will for all to prosper financially. John writes directly to Gaius (verse 1), not all Christians. The King James Bible is commonly used in Word of Faith congregations. They should remember that when “Thou” is used, as in 3 John 2 in reference to Gaius, it is in the Greek singular, not the plural. John wrote this verse to Gaius only. This means any who teach 3 John 2 is God’s will for all Christians to be financially prosperous and healed are wrong. Dr. Floyd Nolen Jones explains the singular/plural use in his book Which Version is the Bible?28 Dr. Jones explains in his book how the following authors mislead people by teaching that 3 John 2 assures health and/or wealth for all Christians:

Rod Parsley—Your Harvest Is Come, 1999, p. 26.
Benny Hinn—Rise & Be Healed!, 1991, p. 66.
Gloria Copeland—God’s Will is Prosperity, 1978, p. 45.
Guillermo Maldonado—Jesus Heals Your Sickness Today, 2009, p. 28.
Joseph Prince—Healing Promises, 2012, p. 61.
Charles Capps—The Tongue—A Creative Force, 1995, p. 66.
Joyce Meyer—Prepare to Prosper, 1997, p. 46.

8) Abraham’s Covenant

Concerning Abraham’s covenant from God, Gloria Copeland writes:

When the Church received spiritual redemption, she let go of the rest of the blessing of Abraham. Prosperity and healing became a lost reality. The Church took spiritual blessing and left the prosperity and healing portions of the promise.29

This doctrine is incorrect. A careful reading of chapters 12-17 in Genesis will reveal Abraham’s covenant was about his seed, land rights, and circumcision. Though Abraham was wealthy, nowhere in these chapters is physical healing and wealth promised to all future New Covenant believers.

Luke 1:67-79 mentions Abraham’s covenant. Health and wealth are not recorded. Romans 4:1-5:2 cites several references about Abraham’s blessing and does not teach this covenant provides health and wealth for all New Covenant believers. Galatians 3:8 explains God’s plan to justify the heathen through faith. Verse 14 reveals the blessing of Abraham for the Gentiles; they would “receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.” According to the apostle Paul, who was inspired by the Holy Spirit to write Romans and Galatians, Abraham’s covenant guarantees forgiveness (justification), not money and healing.

9) the Curse of the Law

Galatians 3:13 says “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us.” Kenneth E. Hagin taught the curse of the Law is threefold: Christ redeemed us from sin, sickness, and poverty.30 Frederick Price also believes we “have been redeemed from the curse of the Law, which is poverty, sickness, and spiritual death.”31 Both of these authors confuse the various curses (plural) in the Old Covenant (Deuteronomy 28:15; 29:20-21) with the specific curse of the Law. Galatians 3 contains information which defines the curse of the Law. Paul never writes Jesus redeemed us from the “threefold curse of the Law,” and Paul received the Gospel by revelation from Jesus (Galatians 1:11-12). The curse of the Law was that no one could keep the entire Law (Galatians 3:10-11), therefore, all were under the Law’s curse of sin. Christ kept the entire Law and never sinned (1 Peter 2:22). His perfect blood sacrifice redeems us from the death penalty of unforgiven sin.

More proof that the curse of the Law doesn’t guarantee physical healing and prosperity for all is found in Galatians 2:10 where Paul records he was aware of their poverty. If Christ’s sacrifice removed poverty from the curse of the Law, Paul would have told them in this epistle, and Jesus would have reminded His followers in Revelation 2:9 that they should not be in poverty. It is unscriptural to teach that Christ’s shed blood guarantees health and wealth throughout our life. Clearly, redemption from the curse of the Law is redemption from the penalty of all our sins. The totality of our redemption (complete curse removal) will be finalized as recorded in Revelation 21:1-5; 22:1-5.

There are serious consequences to indoctrinating people into believing that the atonement guarantees health and success; people who have been taught this often lose heart and possibly even deny the faith when they are unable to attain these goals.

10) Guaranteed Physical Healing Through Christ’s Atonement

When teaching on healing, Word of Faith healing ministers repeatedly declare throughout the world, “Isaiah 53:5 says by His stripes you are healed. Jesus died to physically heal you. Your healing has already occurred at the cross. Just claim it by faith, and you will be healed!” First Peter 2:24 is often combined with Isaiah 53:5 by faith healers. A few atonement healing advocates are the following:

Joyce Meyer—Be Healed in Jesus’ Name, 2000, pp. 16-19.
Rod Parsley—At the Cross Where Healing Begins, 2003, pp. 37-39.
Joseph Prince—Healing Promises, 2012, pp. 17-19.
Kenneth Hagin—Plead Your Case, 1979, p. 28.
Kenneth Copeland—You are Healed! 1979, pp. 9-12.
Frederick K. C. Price—Is Healing for All? 2015, pp. 120-121.

The context of Isaiah 53:5 reveals whether physical or spiritual healing is emphasized. As you read, notice the words in italics:

But he was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed. (emphasis added)

The words “transgressions,” “iniquities,” and “peace” all refer to the condition of our spiritual relationship with God. Christ’s purpose for being wounded, bruised, and chastised for us on the Cross was to reconcile us through His forgiveness that we would have peace with His Father in heaven. The healing that Isaiah describes in this verse is spiritual healing. The Messiah forgives so we can be reconciled to Almighty God. Isaiah is foretelling the Lamb of God will be the propitiation for our sins (1 John 2:2; 4:10). Physical sickness and financial poverty are not mentioned in Isaiah 53:5 because these problems do not separate us from God, as sin does. Isaiah 53 vividly directs our focus on the Suffering Servant who atones for the sins of the world.

An argument from Isaiah 53:5 false faith healers have used to convince people to have faith to receive healing is: “The word for healing in Isaiah 53:5 is râphâ, and it means physical healing.” Yes, râphâ can mean physical healing, but it also can mean spiritual healing, and it does not have to mean both: Psalm 41:4; 147:3; Isaiah 6:10; Jeremiah 3:22; Hosea 7:1; it can refer to the healing of water, 2 Kings 2:21-22 and the healing of the land, 2 Chronicles 7:14. Therefore, the context of Isaiah 53:5 determines what type of healing the Holy Spirit is referring to. In this case, the context is spiritual healing (forgiveness). Also, Isaiah 61:1 is a prophecy describing the Messiah’s ministry and gives clarification to 53:5. It says:

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound.

Jesus reads this messianic identity prophecy in Luke 4:18 and says, “He hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted.” Jesus does not say He was sent to heal all sickness and disease, though He did heal multitudes due to His great compassion for them: “Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick” (Matthew 14:14, emphasis added). But He also “withdrew Himself” from multitudes (did not heal them) who wanted His healing (Luke 5:15-16), and He was selective in healing only one in a multitude who continually sought healing (John 5:1-9). Concerning atonement healing, Isaiah 53:4 is a final verse needing explanation from an apostolic observation.

Matthew 8:1-16 cites miraculous healings and deliverance from demonic spirits while verse 17 comments, “That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias [Isaiah] the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.” Verse 17 is quoting from Isaiah 53:4 where it says “He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.”

Isaiah 53:4 appears to be a verse referring to Christ’s time on the Cross (“smitten of God”). But Matthew records these healings as happening during Christ’s ministry, not linking them to the atonement. If Matthew had wanted to teach guaranteed physical healing through the atonement, he would have followed verse 17 with “and with His stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5). But he didn’t, and a crucial Greek word he uses in verse 17 shows what he was taught by the Holy Spirit when recording Scripture to ground us in truth.

The Greek word for “bare” (our sicknesses) is bastazō and is never used to describe atonement bearing of sins or diseases in the New Testament. It directs our focus to everyday bearing of burdens and sufferings borne on behalf of others.32 If Matthew had wanted to teach guaranteed atonement healing in verse 17, he would have used the word anapherō, which “is used twice of the Lord’s propitiatory sacrifice, in His bearing sins on the Cross, Hebrews 9:28 and 1 Peter 2:24.”33 On the Cross, Jesus does bear the sins of the world and all the problems sin has created, so in the future all the consequences of sin will be removed (Revelation 21:1-5; 22:1-5). Until then, we seek the Lord for healing as He wills (1 Corinthians 12:9, 11), ask for the elders to pray (James 5:14-18), and read His Word to strengthen the inner man daily (2 Corinthians 4:16). Those who teach that physical healing is guaranteed for all through Christ’s atonement are teaching false doctrine.

Take the time to read every Gospel message preached in the Book of Acts, and you will see the apostles never preached “Jesus died to heal and prosper all,” and they never used “by His stripes you are healed” in any Gospel presentation. First Peter 2:24 is the only time Isaiah 53:5 is used in the New Testament, and it refers to spiritual healing. Furthermore, if healing was guaranteed through Christ’s atonement, there would be no need for the gifts of healing (1 Corinthians 12:9).

Response Needed to Glorify the Real Jesus

If you will look back at the various Word of Faith doctrines that have been exposed, you should scripturally discern the real Jesus didn’t teach any of these, nor did His apostles. These false faith doctrines are rampant worldwide. If you are involved with believing any of these unscriptural doctrines, you need to repent by renouncing them and exposing them. The leaven of false doctrine (Galatians 5:9) inflates deception which impairs abundant life in Jesus (John 10:10). False teachers and false prophets (Matthew 7:15-23) proclaim doctrines and a gospel not taught by the real Jesus (2 Corinthians 11:4, 13-15).

Luke 24:45-48 teaches exactly which Gospel Jesus wanted preached. His true Gospel does not include guaranteed atonement healing and prosperity for all. Not preaching the true Gospel is working against God’s Holy Spirit of truth (John 15:26; 16:13) because it redefines Jesus and His atonement. Jesus prayed that we would be sanctified in truth (John 17:17). True doctrine glorifies the Lord Jesus; false doctrine does not. We are to treasure God’s Word in our heart that we might not sin against Him (Psalm 119:11). Receiving and confessing the true Son of God as Lord and Savior (Romans 10:9-10) establishes the assurance of eternal life in one’s heart (1 John 5:11-13). Make sure you have eternal life.

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Endnotes:
1. Frederick K. C. Price, Is Healing for All? (Los Angeles, CA: Faith One Publishing, 2015), p. 7.
2. Larry Huch, The 7 Places Jesus Shed His Blood (New Kensington, PA: Whitaker House, 2004), p. 41.
3. Guillermo Maldonado, Jesus Heals Your Sickness Today! (Miami, FL: ERJ Publications, 2009), p. 23.
4. Don Gossett & E. W. Kenyon, The Power of Your Words (New Kensington: PA: Whitaker House, 1981), p. 63.
5. Creflo A. Dollar Jr., How To Obtain Healing (College Park, GA: Creflo Dollar Ministries, 1999), p. 16.
6. James Strong, The New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance Of The Bible (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Inc., 1996), p. 94.
7. Bill Winston, The God Kind Of Faith (Oak Park, IL: Bill Winston Ministries, 2014), p. 13.
8. Kenneth Copeland, The Power Of The Tongue (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Publications, 1980), p. 5.
9. Kenneth Copeland, The Force of Faith (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Publications, 1992), p. 13.
10. Charles Capps, Faith and Confession (England, AR: Capps Publishing, 1987), p. 25.
11. A. T. Robertson, Word Pictures in the New Testament, The Gospels According to Matthew and Mark, Volume I (Nashville, TN: Broadman Press, 1930), p. 361.
12. Charles Capps, Faith and Confession, op. cit., p. 255.
13. Kenneth E. Hagin, “You Can Have What You Say!” (Tulsa, OK: Rhema Bible Church, 1979), pp. 1-6.
14. John Osteen, There is a Miracle in Your Mouth (Houston, TX: Lakewood Church, 1972), pp. 42-43.
15. Charles Capps, Faith and Confession, op., cit., p. 78.
16. David Yonggi Cho, The Fourth Dimension, Volume One (Alachua, FL: Bridge-Logos Publishers, 1979), p. 32.
17. Charlie Capps, Faith and Confession, op. cit., p. 22.
18. http://www.wicca-spirituality.com/creative-visualization.html.
19. http://web.archive.org/web/20160327163131/http://www.iam-tunes.org/pages/Simple-Visualizations.html.
20. Ophiel, The Art and Practice of Getting Things Through Creative Visualization (San Francisco, CA: Peach Publishing Co., 1968), p. 1.
21. Gloria Copeland, God’s Will is Prosperity (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Publications, 1978), p. 63.
22. Ibid., p. 117.
23. Ibid., p. 121.
24. Kenneth Copeland, The Laws of Prosperity (Fort Worth, TX: Kenneth Copeland Publications, 1974), p. 102.
25. Kenneth E. Hagin, How God Taught Me About Prosperity (Tulsa, OK: Rhema Bible Church, 1985), p. 23.
26. Ibid., p. 18.
27. Gloria Copeland, God’s Will is Prosperity, op. cit., pp. 70-71.
28. Floyd Nolen Jones, Which Version is the Bible? (Humboldt, TN: Kings Word Press, 2014), pp. 78-79.
29. Gloria Copeland, God’s Will is Prosperity, op. cit., p. 25.
30. Kenneth E. Hagin, Redeemed From Poverty, Sickness, and Spiritual Death (Tulsa, OK: Rhema Bible Church, 1983), pp. 1-2.
31. Frederick K. C. Price, Three Keys to Positive Confession (Los Angeles, CA: Faith One Publishing, 1994), p. 59.
32. W. E. Vine, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words (Old Tappan, New Jersey: Fleming H. Revell Company, 1966), pp. 100-101.
33. Ibid., p. 101.

To order copies of Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture, click here.

Other Related Booklets from Lighthouse Trails

“I Just Had a Vision!” by Kevin Reeves
False Revival Coming: Holy Laughter or Strong Delusion by Warren B. Smith
The New Age Propensities of Bethel Church’s Bill Johnson by John Lanagan
10 Questions for those who claim The “Supreme Beings” of the Nations Are the True God by Sandy Simpson
IF it is of God: Answering the Questions of IF:Gathering by Cedric Fisher
Slain in the Spirit: Is it a Biblical Practice? by Kevin Reeves
The Perfect Storm of Apostasy: The Kansas City Prophets and Other Latter-Day Prognosticators by Mary Danielsen

To order copies of Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture, click here.

Lighthouse Trails Publishing to Make Contact with Over 100 Christian Leaders to Warn About Jesus Calling

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. (Isaiah 119:105)

For nearly 14 years, Lighthouse Trails has been trying to warn Christian leaders and the body of Christ of the spiritual deception that has entered the church. While thousands of Christians have responded favorably to the work we do, and we believe our material and the material of our authors has influenced, either directly or indirectly, tens of thousands of believers, the sad reality is tens of millions (if not hundreds of millions) of proclaiming Christians throughout the world are following leaders who will not warn them about spiritual deception, even when it is warned about in the Bible. In an ongoing effort to warn the church, Lighthouse Trails has put together a spreadsheet with the names of over 100 Christian leaders. We have now collected mailing addresses to all these names. While we have given away thousands of copies of books, booklets, and DVDs to leaders, professors, missionaries, pastors, and church members since 2002, we have never had a list with names and addresses so that we could send materials to a large number of leaders all at once. Now that we have this database, we are going to begin sending these 100+ leaders booklets on a regular basis with the hope of stirring them to discerning action.

Bible On PulpitWhile we realize our efforts in this mailing project to leaders may end up being futile, we are motivated by a sense of desperation as we witness the snowballing effect taking place in the church with regard to Christians becoming seriously deceived and deluded.

Because most Christian leaders are not even talking about Sarah Young’s Jesus Calling, the first booklet we are sending out to these leaders is Warren B. Smith’s new booklet, 10 Scriptural Reasons Why Jesus Calling is a Dangerous Book.

The following is a cover letter we will be including with the booklet. Below that, we have listed the 100+ leaders who will be getting this booklet and subsequent ones. As the Lord provides and leads, we will send out a new booklet to these men and women every two or three months. Please take a look at the names we have listed below, and if you know of a leader whom we have not listed and feel we should, please e-mail us at editors@lighthousetrails.com, and we will take your suggestion into serious consideration. Please include that person’s organization name and mailing address so we can include him or her on the list. Keep in mind, the names we have chosen are primarily considered influential leaders of the evangelical church.

We hope our efforts will encourage you to continue the good fight for the contending of the faith. For those who may be feeling dismayed at the struggle in their own efforts to contend for the faith, please read “The Unacknowledged War and the Wearing Down of the Saints” by Cedric Fisher.

OUR LETTER TO CHRISTIAN LEADERS

Dear Christian Leader:

Sarah Young’s perennial best-selling book, Jesus Calling, has sold over 15 million copies since it was first published in 2004. It continues to be enthusiastically read around the world and is available in over 20 different editions in English alone. With the book more popular than ever, there are entire Sarah Young’ sections in Christian bookstores that feature Jesus Calling and other related products. Sadly, most Christian leaders are either unaware of the book’s serious problems or are just choosing to stay away from the growing controversy surrounding Jesus Calling. Whatever the case, few, if any, warnings are being issued by those in Christian leadership.

In case you happened to be unaware of the problems involving Jesus Calling, we have enclosed our recently published Lighthouse Trails booklet titled 10 Scriptural Reasons Why Jesus Calling is a Dangerous Book. Hopefully, it will help you to understand why Sarah Young’s book is such a threat to the spiritual well-being of today’s church.

Sincerely in Christ,

The Editors at Lighthouse Trails Publishing

The List of Leaders We Are Reaching Out To
(Not all of the names below are those in deception. This list has a variety of persuasions within the evangelical camp. We are compelled to send each of these people specific information on various important issues that are basically not being addressed in the church today.)

First Name Last Name Organization
Randy Alcorn Eternal Perspective Ministries
John Ankerberg John Ankerberg   Ministries
Kay Arthur Precept Ministries International
Ted Baehr MovieGuide
Mark Bailey Dallas Theological Seminary
Jim Bakker Morningside Church
Gary Bauer American Values
Alistair Begg Truth for Life
Steve Berger Grace Chapel
John and Lisa Bevere Messenger International
Pat Boone Actor and Activist
Brian Broedersen Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa
Kirk Cameron c/o Liberty University
Pastor Tom Carter Dinuba First Baptist Church
Dan Cathy Chick-fil-A
Matt Chandler The Village Church
Gary Chapman
Bryan Chappell Grace Presbyterian Church
Roberta Combs Christian Coalition of America
Ray Comfort Living Waters
Jim Daly Focus on the Family
Mart DeHaan Our Daily Bread
Dr. James Dobson Family Talk
Joni Eareckson-Tada Joni and Friends
Jack Eggar Awana CEO President
Dr. Tony Evans Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship
Pastor Jonathan Falwell Thomas Road Baptist Church
Jerry Falwell Liberty University
Joseph Farah World News Daily
Dr. Ronnie Floyd Southern Baptist President Crosschurch
Jim Garlow Skyline Church (La Mesa, CA)
Norman Geisler Summit Ministries
Louie Giglio Passion City Church
Franklin Graham Samaritan’s Purse
Dr. Jack Graham Prestonwood Baptist Church
Anne Graham-Lotz AnGel Ministries
David Green Hobby Lobby Stores Inc
Pastor John Hagee Cornerstone Church
Ken Ham Answers in Genesis
Hank Hanegraaff Bible Answer Man
Jack Hayford The Church on the Way
Pastor Skip Heitzig The Connection
Hugh Hewitt The Hugh Hewitt Show
Pastor Jack Hibbs Real Life With Jack Hibbs
Pastor Dave Hocking Hope for Today
Dr. Michael Horton Westminster Seminary
Pastor Bill Hybels Willow Creek Community Church
Pastor Robert Jeffress First Baptist Church
Pastor David Jeremiah Shadow Mountain Community Church
Bill Johnson Bethel Church
Pastor Timothy Keller Redeemer Presbyterian Church
Pastor R T Kendall R T Kendall Ministries
The Kendrick Brothers Film makers
Dan Kimball Vintage Faith Church
Ben Kinchlow 700 Club
Dr Tim LaHaye Southern California Seminary
Dr. Richard Land President-Southern Evangelical Seminary
William Lane Craig Biola University
Pastor Greg Laurie Harvest America
Nancy Leigh DeMoss Revive Our Hearts
Mike LeMay Stand up for the Truth
Hal Lindsey Hal Lindsey Ministries
Pastor Max Lucado UpWords
Pastor Fred Luter Franklin Avenue Baptist Church
Dr. Erwin Lutzer Moody Church
Pastor John MacArthur Grace Community Church
Mike Macintosh Horizon Christian Fellowship (Calvary Chapel)
James McDonald Walk in the Word
Josh McDowell Josh McDowell Ministry
Janet Mefferd Janet Mefferd Today
CEO Santiago “Jimmy” Mellado Compassion International
Eric Metaxas The Eric Metaxas Show
Joyce Meyer Joyce Meyer Ministries
Chuck Missler Koinonia House
Albert Mohler Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Beth Moore Living Proof Ministries
Elisa Morgan Women of Faith
Dr Joel Mullinex Rejoice in the Lord
Pastor Joel Osteen Lakewood Church
Luis Palau Luis Palau Association
Sarah Palin
Tony Perkins Family Research Counsel
John Piper Bethlehem Baptist Church
Dennis Pollock Spirit of Grace Ministries
Thom Rainer LifeWay Resources
Dave Ramsey The Lampo Group
Dave Reagan Lamb and Lion Ministries
Ron Rhodes Ron Rhodes Ministries
Pastor Raul Ries Calvary Chapel Golden Springs
Pat Robertson 700 Club Christian Broadcasting Network
James & Betty Robison LIFE Outreach International: LIFE TODAY
Rev. Samuel Rodrigues New Season Christian Worship Church
Joel Rosenberg Trident Media Group
Dennis Rydberg Young Life Service Center
Philip Ryken Wheaton College
Pastor Tim Savage Camelback Bible Church
Mark Schoenwald HarperCollins Christian Publishing
Bobby Schuller Crystal Cathedral Church
Jay Sekulow American Center for Law and Justice
Gary Smalley Smalley Relationship Center
Larry Spargimino Southwest Radio Church Ministries
Dr Charles Stanley First Baptist Church
Brad Stine Christian Comedian
Cameron Strang Relevant Media Group
Steve Strang Charisma Magazine
Jimmy Swaggart Jimmy Swaggart Ministries
Leonard Sweet SpiritVenture Ministries
Chuck Swindoll Insight for Living Ministries
Tim Tebow Tim Tebow Foundation
Jack and Rexella Van Impe Jack Van Impe Ministries International
Pastor Joe Van Koevering Gateway Christian Center
Sheila Walsch musician
Pastor Rick Warren Saddleback Church
David A.R. White Founder Pure Flix Movies
Dr George Wood Assemblies of God president
Dr Rick Yohn Men of the Word
Dr Ed Young The Winning Walk
Pastor Michael Youssef Leading the Way
Ravi Zacharius International Ministries
Charisma magazine
Board of Director Bible Study Fellowship
 Aviel  Schneider  Israel Today
Kimm  Carr Community Bible Study
Michael Farris Home School Legal Defense Association
Marvin Olasky World Magazine
Dr. Jeff Meyers Summit Ministries
Dr. Jerry Nance Teen Challenge global president

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