Posts Tagged ‘signs and wonders’
To Lighthouse Trails Editors:
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 several 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:
1) Link to 12/6/16 Herescope posting/article: “The Bethel Church Upgrade”: http://herescope.blogspot.com/2016/12/the-bethel-church-upgrade.html
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
Alliance Theological Seminary/Nyack College – Seminarian’s Ecstatic Encounter at the Resting Place: House of Prayer and Revival Center
By L. Putnam
Learn to Discern
In this article you will meet Maddy, a twenty-seven-year old ATS [Alliance Theological Seminary] seminarian, who genuinely desires a deeper walk with the Lord. Now, as Maddy goes after these experiences, she describes them in the Nyack “New York’s Christian College” official blog called “Life at Nyack.” It is here one can read her astounding story of her encounter with the man with the piercing sword as well as other stories of her spiritual quests.
Maddy Recruits for ATS
Who is Maddy? Maddy is a third year seminary student who, up to this past summer, was the Admissions Associate for ATS. In “Why ATS?!”, Maddy records just who she is, “I am that enthusiastic face found behind a table, a banner, and a whole lot of ATS and Nyack College material at an event or church. And I am that woman who prays, encourages, and answers the tough questions and lends a listening ear to … prospective students of the Alliance Theological Seminary.”
Maddy further writes, ” … for me recruiting … isn’t something I do out of obligation. I recruit for ATS because I strongly believe in everything the … seminary has to offer.” Maddy continues, “As a student of the Master’s of Divinity program God has literally shaken and is in the process of shaking everything that can be shaken within me.” A bit later, she reveals two of the places where this “shaking” has been going on. She says, “… through lecture after lecture in courses like ‘PPTF’ and in ‘Initiation to Spiritual Formation,’ I truly began to understand who it is that God says I am.”
Maddy Retreats to the Resting Place
In Maddy’s blog “Fearless” one finds Maddy at the Resting Place: House of Prayer and Revival Center which she writes is, “… a house of prayer where many Nyack and ATS students frequent.”
http://life.nyack.edu/fearless/ And just where is this House of Prayer that Maddy frequents, and what is it all about? . . .
Its Friends: Bethel Church, Redding; Bill Johnson; Bob Jones; Che An; John and Carol Arnott; Kansas City IHOP; Lou Engle; Mike Bickle; Heidi Baker; Rick Joyner; Randy Clark; and other NAR stalwarts. Its Teaching and Podcast Suggestions: Bethel Church podcast, YWAM Fire and Fragrance DTS Podcasts, Weekend Teaching KC IHOP, IHOP Atlanta Podcast, IHOP Atlanta Awakening, and Personal Spiritual Formation by Ron Walborn. To read this entire article, click here.
By John Lanagan
My Word Like Fire Ministries
Bill Johnson is an effective purveyor of kenosis, the heretical teaching that Christ operated on earth solely as a man, with no “Divine capacity” whatsoever. Every miracle, every healing that Christ performed, according to Johnson, came about through the power of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, Johnson teaches, we can all perform healings and miracles, since we also have access to the Holy Spirit.
Thus Johnson’s kenosis doctrine serves to reduce the biblical Christ and elevate man. As Bob Dewaay points out:
“Jesus is no longer unique, but only a special enlightened one who could lead the way to many such enlightened ones in the future. Thus we have a New Age Christ.” 
Kenosis comes from a misunderstanding of Philippians 2:7: …but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Click here to continue reading.
By Mike Oppenheimer
Let Us Reason Ministries
We have been hearing from a number of people on four Blood (red) Moons for 2014, making it is a unique and significant event. We are told the first of these four Blood Moons is to occur on Passover (Pesach) 2014 and through October (Sukkot) 2015. We are reminded by those pointing this out of Jesus saying there would be signs in the sky, specifically that the sun would be darkened and the moon would turn blood red.
Jesus’ statement on signs in the sky include far more than the sun being darkened and the moon turning. There are signs—plural.
Luke 21:11 “[A]nd great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven.”
V.25-26 “And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.”
Most have connected the predicted blood moons with Acts 2:19-21. “I will show wonders in heaven above and signs in the earth beneath: blood and fire and vapor of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
We see both signs: in heaven – sun darkened, moon turns red
Signs in the earth – blood fire, vapor of smoke
And salvation to Israel (spoken elsewhere)
The whole thing on blood moons is completely blown out of proportion and speculation. Acts 2 is about the latter rain that takes place at the END of the TRIBULATION. This is when all of Israel that goes through the Tribulation and those who survive are saved as a nation (Zech.14). They call on the Lord, and Zech. 12:10 is fulfilled: see Joel 2:32.
Rom 11:25-26 “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. And so all Israel shall be saved.”
One of the purposes of the Tribulation is turn Israel back to know her God. Another purpose is to punish the nations that come against Israel and the Jews whom the lord has covenanted with.
Remember the sun is turned black at the same time, indicative of the day of the Lord.
The timing speaks against this being fulfilled in 2014 because the tribulation would have begun before this (I know many believe we are in the tribulation, many more than 10-15 years ago: we are not. If you are here, you will clearly know the Tribulation has begun).
Rev. 6:12 “And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood.”
Matt 24:29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken” (same event of Rev.6).
For something spoken of in prophecy to be fulfilled all the elements, the descriptions must be included. This means those points not just found in one particular scripture but others that also give information on the same event and time period. If the sun is darkened or the moon turns red it does not mean fulfillment has occurred unless the other points mentioned coincide. This is where prophecy teachers get ahead of themselves and make something out of near nothing. We should be careful not to say this will be fulfilled or is fulfilled when it is not.
Author Bio: Mike Oppenheimer is the founder and director of Let Us Reason Ministries, which began in 1994. He has been researching and writing about spiritual deception in the church for many years. His website has extensive information, articles, books, and DVDs. Mike was brought up Jewish, later spending many years in the New Age movement. He became a born-again Christian in the mid-’80s. You can read his testimony at: http://www.letusreason.org/testim.htm. For this and other important articles, visit Mike Oppenheimer’s website, Let Us Reason Ministries
By Heather Clark
Christian News Network
SANTA ANA, Calif. – Dr. Paul F. Crouch, the controversial founder of the global Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) has died. He was 79.
Crouch was born in 1934 in St. Joseph, Missouri and was the son of Assemblies of God missionaries. His father died when he was just seven years old and was raised by his widowed mother with the support of his grandparents.
In 1957, Crouch married Janice Bethany, the daughter of Assemblies of God Pastor Edgar W. Bethany, after the two met while attending Evangel College in Missouri. The Crouch’s had two sons, Paul Jr. and Matthew, both of whom became involved in their parents’ ministry.
In 1973, Crouch partnered with Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker to found the Trinity Broadcasting Network and soon obtained their first television station. Crouch and his wife Jan hosted their flagship broadcast, Praise the Lord, a two-hour talk and Bible teaching program that also featured musical entertainment. Click here to continue reading.
by Kevin Reeves
These are critical days for the body of Christ. We are in the epoch of church history spoken of by the apostle Paul as “perilous times” (II Timothy 3:1). What makes the danger all the more imminent is that not much of the church believes it. Many of us have owned the glorious but erroneous vision of an end-times remnant walking in unconquerable power, transforming entire societies. The result has been nothing short of catastrophic. How soon we forget. Every cult in the world has sprouted from the fertile soil of deception, always initiated by a drastic move away from the primacy of the Word of God into the nebulous, self-defining atmosphere of experience. At New Covenant, our desire to accumulate otherworldly wealth (i.e., supernatural power) had ushered us into a contrived system of personal spiritual elevation much like such active cults as Mormonism and the Jehovah’s Witnesses.
In the case of my former congregation, our pre-supposed love of the Word of God, along with our ignorance of and opposition to nearly every scriptural warning about false doctrine and seducing spirits in the church, left us open to bizarre teachings and practices. As we embraced mysticism, our biblical parameters melted away. Yes, we were sincere, but what we were wanting was diametrically opposed to our relationship with Jesus Christ.
Like physical signs of pain, there were signs in our church that something was terribly wrong.But just like the person who ignores the pain and avoids going to the doctor, we too ignored what should have been so obvious. That is, until it got so bad that avoidance was no longer an option.
Why do people ignore warning signs? It’s like a motorist painting over his oil pressure gauge so he won’t notice the depleting measure. But the reality of the situation will become evident enough when his engine seizes up, and the car comes to a sudden halt. I’ve discovered that in the spiritual arena most people will do exactly this: they take pains to look the other way when something bumps up against their doctrine. As a Christian, there’s no quicker way to start a fight with a friend than to tell him that some of his most fervent beliefs are wrong. I know. I’ve lost my share of friendships that way. The problem comes when folks aren’t willing to deal with the uncomfortable. And the horror of it is that in spiritual matters, we’re dealing with eternal things. While the person who ruins his vehicle can at least purchase another, the human soul is irreplaceable….
In my own case, association with a cutting-edge group offered me security and personal power, and for years, the paranoia of offending God kept me from asking too many unsettling questions. It’s ironic that, in a fellowship that taught a watered-down version of the fear of the Lord, it was fear that motivated me to stay put.
Many other Christians find themselves in this same predicament, especially those with a genuine heart for the truth. When some doctrine foreign to biblical Christianity is introduced into the congregation, they want to inquire about its origin and validity, but fear holds them in check. If it comes from the pastor, who surely must be more spiritual than the rest of the group, then God must simply have approved it. Therefore, questioning or opposing the pastor or church leadership is seen as opposing the Lord Himself.
But God doesn’t work that way. Throughout the Bible are examples of those who love the Lord who questioned authority when it was wrong. And what’s more, “prove all things” is clearly God’s instruction to the believer (1 Thessalonians 5:21).
This manipulative pastoral attitude of squelching sincere inquiries was recently brought home in a frightening way. A friend of mine attended a local church service, knowing that the pastor was fully in support of the so-called Brownsville revival. She was nonetheless unprepared for the chilling threat from the pulpit. After reminding the congregation of the judgment deaths of Ananias and Sapphira for opposing the Holy Spirit, the pastor looked directly at the congregation and said, “If you think about questioning anything that goes on in this service … well, you just be careful!”
Two plus two still equals four. His meaning was quite plain. If you want to end up like that evil-hearted couple, just go ahead and do some serious inquiry into the teachings or manifestations of this group.
Brothers and sisters, something is seriously wrong here. Brutalizing the saints with a threat from an angry heart is not the Bible way. But it is becoming quite a fashionable pastime for leadership to silence even well-intentioned criticism with threats and ridicule. It has been going on from both the Toronto and Brownsville pulpits for years and has spilled over into many other groups in the church today. Name calling and ostracizing are common methods to silence critics. Names like hypocrites, Sanhedrin, and God mockers are merely a sampling of the invective aimed at Christians who are concerned about doctrinal error. Nobody wants to be labeled a Pharisee or heresy hunter. But that is often the penalty for daring to step out and ask for a public, biblical accounting of doctrine and practice.
I know the feeling first hand. I have more than once been called legalistic and have been accused of “going down a hard path”–one of my own making, of course. I had been told repeatedly that I was spiritually immature and had not understood the importance of such works as Rick Joyner’s The Final Quest –despite its un-biblical concepts and many outright contradictions to Scripture.
A current river is flowing, which many believe to be of God. Removed from its proper setting in the 47th chapter of Ezekiel, which speaks of a stream gushing out from the Temple of God, this passage in Scripture is today used to promote a last days vision for the church. In its proper context in Ezekiel, this wonderful prophecy is an encouragement that God has not forgotten His covenant people of Israel. But overstepping the sanctity of scriptural boundaries, this passage has been reshaped into the comfortable doctrines of the shallow believism and sensual manifestations that mark a massive shift in the church. As believers, we have taken a hairpin turn from the preeminence of the Word of God to a relative, experiential, and terribly apostate faith.
The River Revival movement–encompassing the Toronto Blessing, Brownsville Revival (or Pensacola Outpouring), Dominion, Latter Rain, Word of Faith, Rodney Howard-Browne’s laughing revival, the Kansas City prophets, and an arbitrary mix of all or some of the aforementioned–is flowing into congregations worldwide. Given impetus by these major doctrinal tributaries, this movement’s teachings have led multitudes away from the truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ into a dangerous realm of subjective experiences, mysticism, and blatant heresy. Closely follow the curves of this river and you’ll find spiritual deviations at first overlooked. After all the hype, the wild manifestations, the wonderful testimonies, the flamboyant prophecies, and the earth-shaking visions, the discerning eye will gaze upon a farther shore, where an entirely different, frightening story unfolds–a story of broken lives and shattered faith, of rebellion and of merchandising a substitute “anointing.”
There is another side to all the fanfare, a glaring something that for the most part remains unspoken or deliberately avoided. There is indeed another side to the River. As believers, it is time we cross over and take a long, hard look.
(To read more about this, read The Other Side of the River by Kevin Reeves)