Monday, April 20, 2015

GENUINE REVIVAL IS MARKED BY FAITHFUL GOSPEL PROCLAMATION
"...God has made Him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified."

declaring the good news of the gospel of grace

For we are the circumcision, 
who worship by the Spirit of God 
and glory in Christ Jesus 
and put no confidence in the flesh—
-Phil. 3:3

I was watching a very disturbing live-broadcast last evening on www.God.tv which was featuring what has come to be known as The Florida Healing Outpouring. Some are saying this is genuine revival; others say there is real cause for concern. I am in the later camp on this. In fact, some things surrounding this "outpouring" are not only unbiblical, but grievously bazaar and cultic.

If you are a student of some of the great revivals throughout church history, there are a few common marks to them all:
1. a return to Christ-centered, God glorifying, Sprit filled biblical worship 
2. unrelenting Prayer 
3. Repentance from sin 
4. Recovery of the genuine gospel preached (justification by faith alone) 
5. Evangelism (the harvest of souls being saved) 
6. and, the lasting fruit of holiness and Christlikeness
This Florida Healing Outpouring is strained on most of these things. Is there worship? Yes, but it is far from being biblical. It is more hyped than holy. Is there unrelenting prayer taking place? Yes. But is more about getting something from God, mostly physical healing, than the prayer of contrition. Is there repentance from sin? Yes, but it is tertiary not primary. Is there the preaching of the genuine gospel? I haven't heard it yet though it may have occurred at some point. Is there evangelism taking place? Apparently, but it is difficult to know if this is easy believe Finneyism run a muck or genuine conversion. Time will tell. And lastly, is there holiness and Christlikeness being exhibited? Maybe in part, but certainly not from the platform. It is more of an arrogant, showy, entertaining, cockiness than one of a Christlike humility, brokenness, contrition, and a rejoicing with reverence.

What would mark genuine revival preaching? What would reformation proclamation embody? Here is the greatest sermon I could point to as a source of encouragement to you. We need revival beloved - no question. We need another sovereign move of God among His people in our nation. May we, by God's grace, see this happen in our day! Oh for another Great Awakening - amen?

Here is the greatest sermon I know on revival and reformation:
Acts 2:14 ¶ But Peter, taking his stand with the eleven, raised his voice and declared to them: “Men of Judea and all you who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you and give heed to my words.
Acts 2:15 “For these men are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only the third hour of the day;
Acts 2:16 but this is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel:
Acts 2:17 ‘AND IT SHALL BE IN THE LAST DAYS,’ God says,
‘THAT I WILL POUR FORTH OF MY SPIRIT ON ALL MANKIND;
AND YOUR SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS SHALL PROPHESY,
AND YOUR YOUNG MEN SHALL SEE VISIONS,
AND YOUR OLD MEN SHALL DREAM DREAMS;
Acts 2:18 EVEN ON MY BONDSLAVES, BOTH MEN AND WOMEN,
I WILL IN THOSE DAYS POUR FORTH OF MY SPIRIT
And they shall prophesy.
Acts 2:19 ‘AND I WILL GRANT WONDERS IN THE SKY ABOVE
AND SIGNS ON THE EARTH BELOW,
BLOOD, AND FIRE, AND VAPOR OF SMOKE.
Acts 2:20 ‘THE SUN WILL BE TURNED INTO DARKNESS
AND THE MOON INTO BLOOD,
BEFORE THE GREAT AND GLORIOUS DAY OF THE LORD SHALL COME.
Acts 2:21 ‘AND IT SHALL BE THAT EVERYONE WHO CALLS ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED.’
Acts 2:22 ¶ “Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know—
Acts 2:23 this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death.
Acts 2:24 “But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.
Acts 2:25 “For David says of Him,
‘I SAW THE LORD ALWAYS IN MY PRESENCE;
FOR HE IS AT MY RIGHT HAND, SO THAT I WILL NOT BE SHAKEN.
Acts 2:26 ‘THEREFORE MY HEART WAS GLAD AND MY TONGUE EXULTED;
MOREOVER MY FLESH ALSO WILL LIVE IN HOPE;
Acts 2:27 BECAUSE YOU WILL NOT ABANDON MY SOUL TO HADES,
NOR ALLOW YOUR HOLY ONE TO UNDERGO DECAY.
Acts 2:28 ‘YOU HAVE MADE KNOWN TO ME THE WAYS OF LIFE;
YOU WILL MAKE ME FULL OF GLADNESS WITH YOUR PRESENCE.’
Acts 2:29 ¶ “Brethren, I may confidently say to you regarding the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day.
Acts 2:30 “And so, because he was a prophet and knew that GOD HAD SWORN TO HIM WITH AN OATH TO SEAT one OF HIS DESCENDANTS ON HIS THRONE,
Acts 2:31 he looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that HE WAS NEITHER ABANDONED TO HADES, NOR DID His flesh SUFFER DECAY.
Acts 2:32 “This Jesus God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses.
Acts 2:33 “Therefore having been exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He has poured forth this which you both see and hear.
Acts 2:34 “For it was not David who ascended into heaven, but he himself says:
‘THE LORD SAID TO MY LORD,
“SIT AT MY RIGHT HAND,
Acts 2:35 UNTIL I MAKE YOUR ENEMIES A FOOTSTOOL FOR YOUR FEET.”’
Acts 2:36 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ—this Jesus whom you crucified.”
Acts 2:37 ¶ Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?”
Acts 2:38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 2:39 “For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.”
Acts 2:40 And with many other words he solemnly testified and kept on exhorting them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation!”
Acts 2:41 So then, those who had received his word were baptized; and that day there were added about three thousand souls.
Acts 2:42 They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.
Acts 2:43 ¶ Everyone kept feeling a sense of awe; and many wonders and signs were taking place through the apostles.
Acts 2:44 And all those who had believed were together and had all things in common;
Acts 2:45 and they began selling their property and possessions and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need.
Acts 2:46 Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart,
Acts 2:47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved.

45 comments:

Believing Thomas said...

Steve - I'd like to reserve judgement on this movement and their teachings until I see/hear more. I signed up for an account there & am observing. At first blush, I have some concerns about the subject matter... seems to be a lot of talk about financial gain... talk about how God may bless you financially to make up for other areas where things didn't work out as you planned.

It seems like the God-as-Santa-Clause teaching I've seen over and over from the Charismatic movement.

In the interest of full disclosure, I have a propensity toward distrust toward this type of movement, having seen lots of evidence of folks being blown about by every wind of "doctrine."

gigantor1231 said...

S.J.

I have been following the Florida healing outpouring for a few weeks. It is anything but Godly and is primarily about Fraud Bentley, talk about a self serving little man who is capitalizing on 'a sucker is born every minute!' There may be genuine Christians participating in this charade and if they are I hope they are observing and not being suckered. While God can use anything to glorify Himself, this event is nothing more than a opportunity for folks to imbibe in some strong delusion.

With regards to genuine 'revival', I am not certain that revival is a valid term to use in light of the fact that we are predestine and chosen by God, even from before the foundations of the World. (Eph. 1:4) In other words for any person to be saved it is a pre ordained act by God who chooses us according to His good pleasure. While it is a great thing to see great numbers of people come to the Lord and see a community or society greatly impacted it is still God sovereignly moving on those individuals that He has already chosen. My point being is that there is nothing that we can do to bring revival, our job is what it has always been and that is to faithfully preach the Gospel in all of it's glorious truth, proclaiming to all that there is only one way to the Father, one way to salvation and that is through our Savior Jesus Christ alone, by grace you are saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God; not as a result of works so no one may boast.
I believe that there have been studies done of many revivals and the conclusion has been, as is consistent with the word, that while many are called and many may display something that appears to be the initial fruit of salvation, it is still few that are chosen. Not meaning to be the bogey man on this, but I have said all of this to simply ask; What is true revival? Perhaps it is not what we have made it out to be! Perhaps what we have made it out to be is what has spawned the circus that is going on in Florida and being taken on the road by Fraud Bentley! We need to be careful in these end times days, there are perils galore for all to partake in, tickling itching ears and all. So, be diligent, contend earnestly (Jude 3), know God's word and test the spirits (1John 4: 1).

Alice said...

Here are a couple of direct quotes from Todd Bentley. I won't add any commentary. I'll just let them speak for themselves.

"I’ve been led to do some crazy looking things in the gift of faith that took real boldness. One time I was in a meeting that was just dead. So I asked God how He wanted to bring a breakthrough. He showed me an older lady right in front of the platform worshipping Jesus and the Lord said to kick her in the face! Unconvinced, I felt to tell the Lord what He already knew: “I have these big biker boots on. You want me to kick this woman in the face?” Clearly I heard God say, “Yes.” So, with no one knowing what was about to happen, I went up to the edge of the platform and BAM my boot went right out at the exact moment that she fell under the power of God. In fact the power of God caused everyone on the platform to get knocked down. There were miracles that followed."

Here's another one:

"We had a meeting in a word-faith church; not much was happening. Everyone was wearing a suit and the appearance was ‘real proper.’ I looked around thinking: God, you promised me revival. Immediately I heard God say: “‘Leg-drop’ the pastor.” That’s what He said to me! Meanwhile the pastor was lying on the ground. Then the Lord told me to leap off the platform and just jump in the air and leg-drop him. God, you’ve got to be kidding, I thought. He said, “No! Make it real. I want this to be a real leg-drop.” him. God, you’ve got to be kidding, I thought. He said, “No! Make it real. I want this to be a real leg-drop.”

parsonsipe said...

Gentles,

I am sorry, but this one leaves me cold. I cannot believe anyone with even a basic knowledge of scripture could possibly be taken in by this demon serving con man. (That sounded insulting and arrogant and I did not mean it that way). He punches a man with stage 4 cancer in the stomach. He states, more than once, that the Holy Spirit TOLD him to punch a woman in the face in order to facilitate her healing. He sees and speaks to angels. His theology is indistinct and painfully extra-biblical. I will not reserve judgment. I can promise you that he may be hearing from a spirit while on his stage, but it is NOT the Holy Spirit. Men and women of God in the Lakeland area need to take a stand and put a stop to this nonsense. I would never say that God has not accomplished something for His glory in these meetings, but the deception and diminishment of the true Gospel of Christ is almost pandemic. I have personally interacted with numerous individuals who were painfully damaged by the false "revivals" in Pensacola and here in Smithton near where I live. When individuals are glorified above Christ and personal success and self-aggrandizement are the primary focus, you know that it is NOT of God. Sorry if I sound a bit passionate about this, but we have been dealing with the after-effects of these type of meetings in many lives for a number of years. Let us pray for a true move of God that brings glory to Him and brings people to their knees in adoration and recognition of their true condition.

Winslowlady said...

Thanks for posting this! It is quite disconcerting that these things keep raising their ugly heads all over the place! winslowldy

SJ Camp said...

alice
Those quotes are very disturbing indeed. Thank you for sharing them and giving further perspective on this "movement."

Steve

josephmcbee said...

As a former (perhaps I should say liberated) charismatic church member, I have been in many of these types of meetings. I cannot speak directly to the ones in Florida since I have not been there, but from the reports I have been reading, they sound eerily similar to the many that I have experienced.

I have been shoved to the ground more times than I can count and been told that it was the power of the Holy Spirit. I have seen people run screaming through the aisles in the middle of the sermon and when I questioned it, I was told that I was blocking a move of God. I have been told fantastic stories of ridiculous sounding "miracles" and when I asked about their validity I was told that I had no right to question the "man of God" and that I was filled with doubt and unbelief and therefore in sin. I have been more abused by the "people of God" in the chrasmatic movement than I care to remember.

At the same time I was personally healed by God of chronic sinus infections in one of those types of meetings before. I have not had a single sinus infection in 12 years, and at that time I had been getting at least one every month for 2 years solid and was spending hundreds of dollars on antibiotics and doctor visits. So I can say that at least in that one case, God worked on my behalf in one of those types of metings. Thanks be to God!

From my years of experience in these types of churches I can honestly say that the people in the congregation are--generally speaking--men and women who sincerely desire to know and worship God with their whole heart and to receive all that He has for them and to obey Him in everything.

The problem is that their genuineness makes them easy prey for false teachers, con artists, and sham ministers who are only interested in stirring up people's emotions, giving them false hope, and liberating them of their money.

In addition, many people in these churches have very little knowledge of God's Word. They generally do not study it on their own, and prefer to be spoon-fed by these very same charlatans.

May the Lord open their eyes and their hearts to receive the truth so that they can be set free from deception.

SJ Camp said...

jospehmcbee
From my years of experience in these types of churches I can honestly say that the people in the congregation are--generally speaking--men and women who sincerely desire to know and worship God with their whole heart and to receive all that He has for them and to obey Him in everything.

I fully agree.

It is further proof though for the body of Christ to be discerning with events like this one, they need to be in the Word and trained by the Word. Many with good intentions have been taken advantage of in these kinds of movements.

Does God still heal? Absolutely and we can thank Him for that work He alone sovereignly does in the lives of His children. Does this man Bentley have the gift of healing? No he does not; or he would just heal at will (as the Apostles did) without all the fanfare attached to it. His claims of visiting the third heaven (like Paul) but numerous times is preposterous. It never happened. Sheer hype. Also his claim of raising the dead is farfetched as well.

The things the Apostles did or have happen to them that were even rare for them, he wants to apply to himself and treat as everyday stuff and normative. Not so. 2 Cor. 12:12 says, "they did signs and wonders of an Apostle." It was unique to them - not just anyone in the church. Like when Luke records in Acts 2 that they "continued steadfastly in the Apostles teaching..." Why? They spoke for God and were giving divine revelation. It was unique to them and not normative in any manner and ceased with them as well.

The unmistakable thing about a corpse, is that it is undeniable proof of death. Like with Lazarus. The Lord even delayed His coming to him for four days so that God would be further glorified. When they finally opened Lazarus's tomb by the Lord's command, the onlookers said that "he stinketh." Why? Decay had begun and it was indisputable that he was really, officially dead.

Those are two great words "he stinketh" for anyone who claims they have raised the dead, aren't they? Today, people consider losing a heartbeat on an operating table for 5 minutes as being really dead. Not so. Death occurs when the spirit has left the body and then the body undergoes decay. IOW, "he stinketh."

If Mr. Bentley claims to have raised the dead, show me a report where all the people knew that the one dead in fact did "stinketh." Let's talk to that corpse and those around him. But that hasn't happened. If a person is truly been raised from the dead; God is glorified and skeptics are silenced.

Mr. Bentley might be sincere in his motives in this... I don't know. But much of the fruit and methods coming from this "outpouring" are suspect and certainly are not biblical. I would think he would want to take a step back and really evaluate this biblically to remain above reproach.

Thanks again for your comment.
Steve

Believing Thomas said...

After digging around the god.tv site, I have to concur with most of the posts here... I'm concerned about what is being portrayed as a move of God, and wonder what is really happening.

The numerous links & references to "seers" including developing your Seer gift, as well as much touting of health and wealth leads me to believe that this is nothing more than a continuation of the sham "faith" movement.

While I've never been a part of this, I've witnessed it first-hand. While attending an AOG church in Hawaii, we had a service where there were a number of "prophecies" bouncing around the service. Most were inane and vague (kind of like the horoscope in the paper), some were ridiculous, like the one where God supposedly talked about freeing His Hawaiian people, but the really disturbing was when an alleged "prophetess" said something forgetable and finished by saying (ostensibly on God's behalf) "This is my final word!" This, of course was followed by several other "words" from God, so the "prophetess" had to go clarify again that this (her speech) was God's "final word."

Though my wife and I were on the worship team, that was our last Sunday there.

I see stuff like this a lot - we have family that attend a very large, very famous Charismatic church here in Colorado Springs, where the concept of deliverance is taught, rather than personal responsibility for one's sins. The continual forays into the latest thing that comes up - books, authors, speakers, doctrines, diets, etc, always makes me think of the "itching ears" mentioned in 2 Timothy 4.

Clearly we have a lot of folks without a good foundation in the Word that judge everything by their experiencing, instead of judging their experiences by the Word.

littlegal_66 said...

"I am glad of any signs of life, even if they should be feverish and transient, and I am slow to judge any well intended movement, but I am very fearful that many so called revivals in the long run wrought more harm than good. A species of religious gambling has fascinated many men, and given them a distaste for the sober business of true godliness.

We need a work of the Holy Spirit of a supernatural kind, putting power into the preaching of the Word, inspiring all believers with
heavenly energy, and solemnly affecting the hearts of the careless, so that they turn to God and live. We would not be drunk with the wine of carnal excitement, but we would be filled with the Spirit. We would behold the fire descending from heaven in answer to the effectual fervent prayers of righteous men. Can we not entreat the Lord our God to make bare His holy arm in the eyes of all the people in this day of declension and vanity?"
---Charles Spurgeon, from
"The Kind of Revival We Need"

SJ Camp said...

littlegal
We need a work of the Holy Spirit of a supernatural kind, putting power into the preaching of the Word, inspiring all believers with heavenly energy, and solemnly affecting the hearts of the careless, so that they turn to God and live.

There it is - heaven sent revival marked by a return to biblical preaching and the sovereignty of God in salvation. Great Spurgeon quote...

Thank you.

SJ Camp said...

believing thomas
The numerous links & references to "seers" including developing your Seer gift, as well as much touting of health and wealth leads me to believe that this is nothing more than a continuation of the sham "faith" movement.

I think you are correct. All the earmarks of the Word/Faith movement are here. Just more "street" in the presentation.

Also, the numerous "words from the Lord" treated as God's Word; the theatrics associated with divine physical healing; the claiming of commonplace direct visions of the Lord and angels is also troubling. He makes them sound available at will.

This undermines tremendously the authority and veracity of Scripture. Experience in the Lord is not bad; but when it goes beyond the purview of God's revealed truth then it should be a concern for us all. I always find it interesting that the same Holy Spirit they claim is speaking directly to them trumping God's Word, is the same Holy Spirit that wrote God's Word (2 Peter 1:16-21).

And let us remember that He is the "Holy" Spirit. Let's treat Him as such.

Campius

Alice said...

The Lazarus example is a telling one. From my understanding, the Jewish rabbis believed and wrote (incorrectly of course) that the spirit of the deceased hovered over his/her body for three days. After four days, it was a done deal--they were not coming back. Isn't it interesting that Jesus delayed four days? Yeah, He knew what He was doing...as always.

Joseph Mcbee said upthread, "In addition, many people in these churches have very little knowledge of God's Word." I think that is the key to it all. Like those agents who study real money in-depth in order to determine money that is counterfeit...that is how we all should be, studying the real truth in order to determine that which is false.

gigantor1231 said...

S.J.

'Mr. Bentley might be sincere in his motives in this... I don't know.'

To be quite frank with you sincerity is not a test of the authenticity of a Christian. Displaying the fruit of the spirit is Gal. 5: 22-25 and how about 1 John where it talks about not only a love for God and His children but a love for the word and keeping His commandments. Todd Bentley is displaying anything but these things, he may exhibit attitudes and behaviors that are similar but when he tells people that they need to 'trust in the angel emma' now we are seeing the truth about Bentley. Todd Bentley is one of those antichrists that it talks about in 1 Jn. 2: 18, he is simply a false prophet.
The word of God is our trust worthy and safe haven from all of this. Getting closer to the spirit of truth, to Jesus Christ is what will insure we are not deluded by this type of individual. We need to test the spirits via the Word of God and hold fast to those things that are true.

Winslowlady said...

Steve, unless you've been to heaven several times like dear Todd Bentley said he has, I would lay off questioning him about much of anything that has to do with God and theology. He's also had surgery by several angels who took out his internal organs and replaced them with white boxes representing wisdom,knowledge and character. When was the last time you had surgery? Maybe we should all go up for a group deal... :-) winslowlady

SJ Camp said...

winslowlady
LOL...

I didn't know Bentley claimed to have had his internal organs replaced with the "white boxes" of wisdom, knowledge and character. I can hardly wait for Geraldo to get the x-rays and confirm this :-).

This has gone from the questionable to the absolute nutty. This is not powerful faith in action; this is doubt - looking for proof and they call it faith.

Good post... Winslowlady.
Campi

Michele Rayburn said...

Steve,

I noticed that you had Christian Research Network and Slice on your sidebar posting this hideous video of Todd Bentley and other videos of him as well this past week.

I remember mentioning him on your post “Cessasionism Or Non-Cessasionism: Is That Even A Question?” (June 5, 2008). Here are excerpts from my comment:

....I was just over at James White's website, and he mentioned a Todd Bentley...James says of him:

"...Todd Bentley, the wild-eyed purveyor of 'revival' down in Florida. If this stuff doesn't shock you, well, nothing will. Sad, incredible stuff. See...theology matters!" (see "And The Phones Go Wild")

I then noticed a comment on another of Steve's blog posts by a girl named "r"...her website...had two videos of this Todd Bentley...the same thing James had in audio.

I also realized that I...had...an article about Todd Bentley and his "angel" Emma.

Well, I finally watched the video...and it was shocking as James had said.

What you'll hear from Todd Bentley is how "God tells him" to assault people, all presumably under the power of the Holy Spirit...kicking a woman in the face, punching, choking, and hitting people so that one man even lost his tooth, assaulting a Pastor...and all this in order to "heal" them.

I had mentioned before how tongues and prophecies have quietly crept into all the churches because the Charismatics are playing down those "gifts" during the Sunday morning services so as to be accepted by, and into, all denominations.

But now, as a result, Charismatics are not just being accepted, but non-Charismatics are being indoctrinated into the Charismatic Movement. They are learning to accept their false teachings, whether or not they themselves actually practice their false "gifts"....

If you listen to Todd Bentley and hear the terrible things he says in the name of God,...this video shows how one error leads to another and then to another.

If you believe in the tongues and prophecies going on in the churches today, then tomorrow you may believe in the signs and wonders, and the next day you may believe in "holy laughter" and "holy barking", and the next day you may follow people like Todd Bentley, who says that God tells him to brutalize people in order to "heal" them. And you may find yourself following "another Jesus".

As James White said, "Theology matters". And the one thing these false Movements have in common is that theology *doesn't* matter to them, and so neither does Truth, and therein lies the problem.

Todd Bentley is associated with mostly Charismatics that go from bad to worse...Bob Jones of the Kansas City Prophets, Dominionist Mike Bickle of IHOP (International House of Prayer), C. Peter Wagner and the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR), and Rick Joyner of Morning Star Ministries, to name only a few....

Jesus said, "God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit AND truth". (John 4:24)

...it is not "the experience" that edifies us, giving us a greater love for God. It is the Lord Jesus Christ Who edifies us, by living His life in us and through us, in the power of the [true] Holy Spirit.

Proverbs 14:12 says, "There is a way which seems right to man, but its end is the way of death."

It's The Truth that matters, Jesus Christ Himself, not "the experience".


You almost had me there for a minute, Winslowlady. If my son hadn't pointed out the smiley face at the end of your comment, I would have thought that you were serious! (I'm a little bit bleary-eyed today from all this reading and writing!)

Michele

Only Look said...

Its just plain ridiculous. You dont even really need to be a theologian to see how ridiculous it is. Not that theology doesnt matter. It does, but how can the body of Christ have gotten so far out to lunch. This is ridiculous.

Grace upon grace,

Brian

KarensFaith said...

I've been watching Todd Bentley and reading about him on the internet for a few weeks now. Saw him one night on God TV...watched lots of videos of him on YouTube and have been going to a site belonging to someone who used to be caught up in this dangerous nonsense. This person has told me their life has been threatened, I've read some of the threats... some from what I believe is called Joel's Army? (I think that's what it's called). It's scary. The one message that keeps getting left on their site (forums) is how we all are going to die for "touching God's anointed." Oh, please! He is not anointed. I've watched him kick people, I've watched a little child scream and beg her parents not to let him touch her, which, oddly, he didn't, but he did touch her parents, I've heard him say that God told him to tell someone he was possessed by a demon...why would God do that? He wouldn't! I've heard him speak of his angel Emma, who I've been reading is actually the name of some demon who was also associated with William Branham; the list goes on and on.

Such a sad thing to witness so many people being deceived by what I believe is evil and they are rejoicing in it! All I can do is pray, and pray for those who are being threatened for exposing this for what it is, and then pray some more.

Thanks for posting about this. And I also love the verses you posted about the greatest revival ever. It would be great to witness something like that now!

God bless,
Karen

littlegal_66 said...

I haven’t viewed the god.tv footage, but a few days ago I did watch the small clip from YouTube that Ingrid has up on Slice (cancer patient……kick in the stomach). I guess maybe that was all I could handle. The methodology enlisted here is especially troublesome to me. When Christ healed the afflicted or performed miracles, He was always gentle. Even when He was applying mud to a blind man’s eyes, He did it gently. Jesus is likened in Scripture to a shepherd caring for his flock (Isaiah 40:11), (while Mr. Bentley’s tactics come off looking like the after-effects of too many hours spent in front of the tube watching WWF and Ultimate Fighting). Christ-like?

Another thing that concerns me is something that “struck” me (pardon the pun) from the quotes Alice posted:
"We had a meeting in a word-faith church; not much was happening.”
“One time I was in a meeting that was just dead.”

First, how does he determine that a meeting is "just dead," or "not much" is "happening?" Because folks aren’t displaying the theatrics he seems to hold dear?

Secondly, according to his own rendition of the story, once he realized that, in his opinion, things were "just dead," we see that he apparently decided to take it upon himself to attempt to initiate or manufacture some excitement, instead of stepping back to see the Holy Spirit do the regenerative work necessary to bring about repentance. It's an all-too-familiar-sounding melody. Time will tell......

Michele Rayburn said...

Littlegal,

I guess you didn't see the latest post on Christian Research Network:

"Todd Bentley To Wrestle On WWE Smackdown" (July 2, '08 by Ken Silva)

Michele

littlegal_66 said...

Michele,

ROFL....well, there you have it!

No, I hadn't seen it, but it's pretty cool that Bro. Ken & I had similar thoughts....

"Bam-Bam Bentley".....too funny. :-D

Thanks for the link, Sis.

--lg

Terry Rayburn said...

Karensfaith,

You wrote, "This person has told me their life has been threatened, I've read some of the threats... some from what I believe is called Joel's Army? (I think that's what it's called). It's scary."

You're right. Joel's Army is creepy. They actually teach that Jesus will return to "incarnate" Joel's Army to judge the Church.

There's a lot of information about them on the Web, but a succinct article about them is on Herescope here.

They spring from the Latter Rain Movement, in connection with the Kansas City Prophets, and are promoted by the Vineyard Movement and others. Vineyard was founded by the late John Wimber with C. Peter Wagner. Wagner is the leader of the New Apostolic Reformation.

Todd Bentley, on his website, offers to train you as a Joel's Army Intern.

Blessings,
Terry

Deb_B said...

"They spring from the Latter Rain Movement, in connection with the Kansas City Prophets..."

It goes all the way back to Bob Jones, KCF and the nefarious "shepherd's rod", where Jones had certain of his self-anointed modern day "prophets", so-called, pass under his "shepherd's rod".

This type always seems so amazed when someone like a Todd Bentley takes up the charge and carries it so much further than its originators ever intended.

I recall our conversations with a highly placed Vineyard representative deep into the Toronto heresy. When Rodney Howard Browne and his traveling circus came to town, so to speak, Vineyard couldn't have been any more relieved to "mutually" sever the Vineyard name/connection from what was once the "Toronto Airport Vineyard". Toronto had gone far beyond what the late John Wimber and, subsequently, his senior staff, ever envisioned.

There IS a place for that "boring" old theological teaching in Church after all, eh?

"Thy word have I hid in my heart that I might now sin against Thee. ... In Thy light, we see light...."

You feed the flesh with these kinds of so-called administrations and manifestations of the spirit and that carnal desire for "more" (whatever "more" is) will always take you further than you ever intended to go at the start. (I know not what manner of spirit they are captivated by during these trance-like apprehensions masquerading under the guise of a "great revival/outpouring of the spirit", but it is none of the Holy Spirit - that is evident - insomuch as I, and others, personally observed on several occasions back then ... and it's gone even further in these present times, as evidenced by the following paragraph.)

As to Todd Bentley, the other evening, my beloved and I viewed in shocked silence the video of Bentley taking a good 15-20 foot running start across the stage at Lakeland and kicking a stage 4 metastatic colon cancer patient right in the abdomen. Claimed he was being obedient to "god". I don't know what "god" Mr. Bentley was serving at that moment, but it sure wasn't the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as He has revealed Himself through the canon of Scripture.

Contrast the perverted teachings of Todd Bentley to the following lyrics:

Draw me, oh, draw me, please draw me, my Jesus.
Into your presence, where I cannot lie.
My soul is so thirsty, I cannot endure it.
And if I can't get closer, I surely will die.

Take me, oh take me, please take me, my Jesus.
Quickly, before I forget that I'm lost.
For so many times, my mind has deceived me,
That I really don't have to carry the cross.
That I really don't have to carry the cross.

I just need to know how to pray.
My wicked desires block the way,
Sometimes I have grieved you away,
I don't want to do that today.

Help me, oh help me, please help me my Jesus.
Save me from sins that I thought were all gone.
Kill me with kindness, and break through my blindness.
I know till I'm dead, I can never live on.
I know till I'm dead, I can never live on.

I just need to know how to pray.
My wicked desires block the way,
Sometimes I have grieved you away,
I don't want to do that today.

Draw me, oh draw me, please draw me my Jesus.

...the late Keith Green

Alice said...

Another thing Jesus did when He healed people was deal with their sin problem. Guess Todd Bentley can't really do that. And when Jesus healed and raised from the dead it was so that they might believe and give glory to God (John 11). Oddly enough, no leg drops, booting grandmas in the face, and pro-wrestling experience necessary.

Deb_B said...

Typo correction in previous post:

Scripture quote should read:

"Thy word have I hid in my heart that I might NOT sin against Thee. ... In Thy light, we see light...."

We aren't going to "NOW sin against Thee [God], I trust? ;-)

Deb_B said...

"Another thing Jesus did ... was deal with their sin problem."

Amen.

Believing Thomas said...

In digging around about Todd Bentley & Joel's Army, I found this video on You Tube - it's the most disturbing thing I've ever seen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NwlRisYyGAI

This one is surreal: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3LzbLUQWodk&NR=1

I've heard of some of these things, but have never witnessed it. I think immediately of Galations 1:6-7 - "I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.

Does anyone know what is being taught to these "converts" when their counselors pray for them? Are they truly being brought into saving knowledge of Christ?

This video - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w_tc4idP3Zc&feature=related - has someone defending Bentley & asks "Have you raised someone from the dead?" Interesting - I thought all miracles came from GOD, not from the conduits.

Truly disturbing

SJ Camp said...

Terry
Great information... thank you. This stuff is so strange and bazaar that it defies logic.

I was thinking last night, isn't it interesting that some of these folks find it difficult to understand that God chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world and that salvation is not an act of their own free will but God's sovereign will; BUT, they have no trouble believing that angels came out of heaven, did surgery on Todd and replaced his internal organs with three white boxes.

Thank brother for being a faithful Berean.
Campius

SJ Camp said...

believing thomas
Very helpful links. Well done.

SJ Camp said...

deb b
As to Todd Bentley, the other evening, my beloved and I viewed in shocked silence the video of Bentley taking a good 15-20 foot running start across the stage at Lakeland and kicking a stage 4 metastatic colon cancer patient right in the abdomen. Claimed he was being obedient to "god". I don't know what "god" Mr. Bentley was serving at that moment, but it sure wasn't the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as He has revealed Himself through the canon of Scripture.

I am going to Florida soon to confront Bentley. I want to run across the stage and drip kick him back to Canada :-).

But seriously, i do want to go... Please pray that the Lord would provide the means to make that necessary.

Thanks again for your comments here,
Steve

SJ Camp said...

Alice
The sin issue is not high on their priority list - though it is mentioned. Just preaching the gospel clearly doesn't draw the media attention or create the hype that claiming going to the third heaven or raising someone from the dead does.

Good insight - thank you.

SJ Camp said...

Michelle
FYI: the "Bam-Bam Bentley" article is a spoof from The Sacred Sandwich (kind of like Lark News). But there is always some truth portrayed in a parody isn't there?

Bentley is not God's anointed; he is annoying though :-).

Deb_B said...

I wrote:

"I recall our conversations with a highly placed Vineyard representative deep into the Toronto heresy."

Let me clarify - my structure in this sentence may lead to misunderstanding, at least insomuch as my own impressions were at the time. During the course of our discussions about the situation in Toronto (initiated at the behest of an apologetic organization), I did not personally believe the "highly placed Vineyard representative" to whom I alluded in my previous post was himself immersed "deep into the Toronto heresy". Quite the contrary, actually.

Rather, our discussions regarding the situation at what was then still the Toronto Airport Vineyard Church did not start until the false Toronto "revival"/heresy was well underway. [Also, at the time my discussions with the authorized spokesman at the main Vineyard Church were initiated, TAVC was on the verge of formally severing its ties with the Vineyard Fellowship by mutual agreement. This was around the time John Wimber had fallen gravely ill, so some minor transition was taking place at the flagship Vineyard Church and overall parent organization].

My apologies to all for the exceptionally poor wording of my initial comment, cited above in bold italics.

(I'm sorry, Mrs. St. Digier, my former studious teacher of grammar during my "formative", more inquisitive years, wherever you are today. Yes ma'am, I still dangle my participles and my paragraph long sentences still send Strunk and White, clutching a copy of their "Elements of Style", fleeing into the night pleading mercy - nay, mercy TWICE!)

Steve, I'll swing back round with some additional comments as soon as I get my beloved fed 'n watered 'n off to earn our daily bread.

KarensFaith said...

Terry Rayburn said...

You're right. Joel's Army is creepy. They actually teach that Jesus will return to "incarnate" Joel's Army to judge the Church.

There's a lot of information about them on the Web, but a succinct article about them is on Herescope here.

They spring from the Latter Rain Movement, in connection with the Kansas City Prophets, and are promoted by the Vineyard Movement and others. Vineyard was founded by the late John Wimber with C. Peter Wagner. Wagner is the leader of the New Apostolic Reformation.

Todd Bentley, on his website, offers to train you as a Joel's Army Intern.


Thank you for that link. That was uh, quite disturbing to read. Creepy indeed!

Their purpose, it seems to me, is to want to destroy the true church. That they want to draw people away from the Cross of Christ to a new way? They don't want unbelievers to know of God's wrath...that His wrath is meant instead for God's people? They are really trying to actually deceive the true believers. Am I right here? This is all a little new to me. Why on earth would any true believer even want to believe this stuff? I may be a little naive about all this, but I do know better than to believe this stuff. What's really scary is that there are people who do believe it or want to. Well, actually, it's sad and I pray for them. I have learned that I need to get more informed about this stuff, it reaches farther than I first thought. And stay in God's Word and pray.

Thank you again for that link. It was most helpful! :)

Blessings,
Karen

KarensFaith said...

Believing Thomas said...

In digging around about Todd Bentley & Joel's Army, I found this video on You Tube - it's the most disturbing thing I've ever seen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NwlRisYyGAI

This one is surreal: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3LzbLUQWodk&...
and then
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w_tc4idP3Zc&fe


That first video made me cry. That is so sad, and as you said, very disturbing. They sounded so hopeless. The second is typical Todd Bentley but the third one is just sad. Is he trying to convince us or himself?

SJ Camp said...

t is further proof though for the body of Christ to be discerning with events like this one, they need to be in the Word and trained by the Word. Many with good intentions have been taken advantage of in these kinds of movements.


I agree.

Winslowlady said...

Steve, unless you've been to heaven several times like dear Todd Bentley said he has, I would lay off questioning him about much of anything that has to do with God and theology. He's also had surgery by several angels who took out his internal organs and replaced them with white boxes representing wisdom,knowledge and character. When was the last time you had surgery? Maybe we should all go up for a group deal... :-)


LOL!!! I actually saw that video and about died laughing. It almost sounded like an alien abduction, some of the stuff he said. I did laugh at this one, but maybe I shouldn't have because so many believed this nonsense.

In Him,
Karen

Michele Rayburn said...

Steve,

I am sitting here laughing...since last night (well I did get some sleep).

I must confess that when I initially posted the "Wrestling" link, I thought it was for real.

I believe it was after I posted it that I went back to read the rest of the article, which took me to The Sacred Sandwich.

At that point, Terry was sitting by, and before I had a chance to think about it, he quickly pointed out that Sandwich was a satire blog.

There I was rebuking Ed McMahon for condoning such a thing, when Terry tells me this, and we all burst out laughing (my son was also there).

Then Littlegal responds to it probably thinking I posted it as a joke, and we burst out laughing again.

First it was Sally A., then it was Winslowlady, now...Ken Silva of all people!

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. But fool me three times...now what do I do? I'm in trouble. I haven't been this gullible in a long time. I guess that's what happens if you read a lot of untruth...like with this Todd Bentley. After awhile, you can't think straight.

Terry was surprised that Ken Silva would link to a satire blog, and now we're wondering if he knew it was a joke!

From what you wrote me, I get this funny feeling you know that I have been had :)

You said, "Bentley is not God's anointed; he is annoying though :-)."

I like that.

Michele

Deb_B said...

For those who haven't seen this yet, here's the link through Christian Worldview of Todd Bentley doing the unthinkable in alleged "obedience" to whatever "god" he's manufacturing in his own image down in Lakeland, Florida.

Bentley takes a running start across the stage which culminates in a hard kick right in the abdomen of a stage 4 metastatic colon cancer patient.

WARNING to especially tender souls, IMO, FWIW, it's pretty brutal and I can't bear to watch it again.

I must confess, ever since we watched the video earlier this week, it's a struggle to avoid giving place to some rather base thoughts about just what I'd like to do to Mr. Bentley if given liberty to so do. One viewing of the travesty being foisted on hurting souls in the name of my God is enough for me.

Here's the link, scroll down just a bit to the video window:

http://www.christianworldviewnetwork.com/article.php/3690/

Our first reaction upon viewing this was stunned silence, then anger ... then deep sadness for the plight of this man struggling with an awful, debilitating disease.

I know nothing of the circumstances which brought this dear soul to the false revival of Todd Bentley. I don't know whether he came on his own, or perhaps some misled soul directed him there in hopes of genuine Divine healing.

What I do know for certain, however, is that what Todd Bentley did to this man was none of Jehovah God. Whatever manner of spirit is driving Todd Bentley, it is not the beloved Holy Spirit.

As for that very sad YouTube Bentley apologetic ...by "harmonlocke", all I can say is this: kind, albeit deceived, sir, I should rather be called a fool by you than to be found a fool by God when it is given to man to die once and then face the judgment.

Thank you believing thomas and karensfaith for the additional links.

littlegal_66 said...

Yes, Michele, I did assume that you were aware it was satirical; that's why I thought it was so cool that Ken Silva would go the wrestling route like I did.....apparently instead, my little mind works like the Sacred Sandwich folks, LOL.

Michele Rayburn said...

Littlegal,

I'm still laughing too.

Do you think that Ken Silva knew that it was satirical?

KarensFaith said...

Deb_B,

I'd seen this video on YouTube the other day. I don't think I can watch it again either. That poor man! You can sort of see the uncertainty in his eyes afterward. :( Sad.

I really didn't post any links, though, just reposted believing thomas' links when I was quoting him. :)

God bless!
Karen

The Seeking Disciple said...

I too have tried to stay neutral on this revival. Some folks from our church went down to Lakeland and they came back still in the middle of the road. They said they saw some good and some bad.

I do think this is a great post Steve and I do believe that Leonard Ravenhill would not support Todd Bentley and his revival. I know that his son David Ravenhill has been a supporter of the Brownsville revival back in the late 1990's but I have not heard much from David on this revival. You are 100% correct that we need a revival and we need a biblical revival!

gigantor1231 said...

How could anyone remain neutral on this garbage. Fraud Bentley is what he is and that is no man of God. Actually it is pretty obvious who he represents... any guesses?

gigantor1231 said...

By the way, having been closely associated with the Wimber's Toronto church and the Brownsville church when all of their false revival was going on, I would just like to say that it was no different! The exact same manipulative, demonic controlled things occurred there too. I am certain if you were to view both events side by side you would not be able to tell the difference!
Bottom line is, do not bye into this stuff for a minute, if anything it is driven by a spirit of strong delusion!

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