The ‘Prophets’ and ‘Apostles’ Leading the Quiet Revolution in American Religion

This article is for informational and research purposes and is not intended as an endorsement of Christianity Today.

A Christian movement characterized by multi-level marketing, Pentecostal signs and wonders, and post-millennial optimism.

Bob Smietana interviewed authors Brad Christerson and Richard Flory wrote on the rise of  “Network Christianity.” As you will see, the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR), a term coined by the late C. Peter Wagner, has yet another name to add to the ever growing list, “INC.” According to Orrel Steincamp, “The current Latter Rain leaders have so purposefully muddied the waters that only those who are dedicated history buffs can discern the historical essentials behind the current teaching on a Second Pentecost eschatology. ACTUALLY, only insiders know the Latter Rain playbook, and they cover it up and pawn if off as a new revelation with a new name. No! the Latter Rain has been around since the early days of 20th century.” (source)

It was revealed in Smietana’s interview with Christerson and Flory that people involved in this theological cult are convinced that God is behind it all and that He’s appointing people into high level positions such as modern-day apostles and prophets–and even government cabinet members–and that these people will “know what to do when they get there.” Moreover, they’ll be listening to God (presumably His voice), and the Holy Spirit will use them to “supernaturally make America or the world into the kingdom of God.”  They claim that some of these people that are in these high-level positions are part of the Trump administration. “But they are not Pentecostals, and they have nothing to do with these groups. The movement just latches on to them and claims God is using Trump to bring in the kingdom.” For more background on this dangerous cult, see our White Paper on the NAR.

So with this in mind, on to Bob Smietana’s interview:

A quiet revolution is taking place in America religion, say Brad Christerson and Richard Flory, authors of The Rise of Network Christianity: How Independent Leaders Are Changing the Religious Landscape.

Largely behind the scenes, a group of mostly self-proclaimed “apostles,” leading ministries from North Carolina to Southern California, has attracted millions of followers with promises of direct access to God through signs and wonders.

Their movement, which Christerson and Flory called “Independent Network Charismatic” or “INC” Christianity, has become one of the fastest-growing faith groups in the United States. Apostles like Bill Johnson, Mike Bickle, Cindy Jacobs, Chuck Pierce, and Ché Ahn claim millions of followers. They’re also aided by an army of fellow ministers who fall under their “spiritual covering.”

Many of these apostles run megachurches, including Bethel Church in Redding California, HRock Church in Pasadena, and the International House of Prayer (IHOP) in Kansas City. But their real power lies in their innovative approach to selling faith. They’ve combined multi-level marketing, Pentecostal signs and wonders, and post-millennial optimism to connect directly with millions of spiritual customers. That allows them to reap millions in donations, conference fees, and book and DVD sales. And because these INC apostles claim to get direction straight from God, they operate with almost no oversight.

Nashville-based religion writer Bob Smietana spoke with Christerson (professor of sociology at Biola University) and Flory (senior director of research and evaluation at the Center for Religion and Civic Culture at the University of Southern California) about the appeal—and danger—of these burgeoning movements.

What’s the difference between INC Christians and the prosperity gospel movement or megachurch networks like the Association of Related Churches (ARC)?

Christerson: Probably the closest kinship would be prosperity gospel movement. But it’s a little different in that the INC movement has a network that cooperates more often. My sense of the prosperity gospel is that it consists of individual entrepreneurs, TV preachers, and megachurch leaders, but there’s not as much cooperation.

Also, the theology is different. The prosperity gospel would focus more on the individual’s health and wealth. This group is unique in that they really think God has put these apostles on earth to basically transform the world. It’s a sort of trickle-down Christianity, where these apostles are at the top of the mountain, exercising this power from the top down. That’s how the kingdom of God comes in.

Ironically, this group isn’t really focused on building up big congregations. Their ideas are spreading through other means, like high-profile conferences and the media products that they are selling.

Flory: These apostles are able to access a lot more money, because they are operating with a pay-for-service model, rather than relying on people’s donations and their goodwill. Congregations bend over backwards to keep people happy and keep the butts in the seats; people don’t have to pay unless they feel like it. But this is a completely different financial model, and it tends to generate much more money. Page 2

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101 Responses to The ‘Prophets’ and ‘Apostles’ Leading the Quiet Revolution in American Religion

  1. Robert George Trohon August 4, 2017 at 11:02 am #

    Thank you for this article.. enlightening and well-written questions and answers.

  2. lyn August 4, 2017 at 12:17 pm #

    Mat 24:24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.

    This is all part of the end times scenario, as Satan is stepping up his agenda because he knows his time is very, very short.
    Only the elect of God will not be fooled and only because He protects and preserves His true church.

    • Maggie August 4, 2017 at 12:27 pm #

      The elect may even be fooled. I understand that the correct Greek translation of “if possible” in Matthew 24:24 indicates that it is actually possible:

      “For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.”

      • lyn August 4, 2017 at 12:40 pm #

        Actually, it isn’t possible. The text refers to the motive/desire… The desire of the false prophets is to lead astray God’s elect, but since God is all powerful He will not let the elect be led astray by these Satan empowered minions. This is why our Lord foretells these end time events, we are warned and we are assured God will not let us fall prey to Satan’s signs and wonders.

        “f it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect – So nearly would their pretended miracles resemble true miracles as to render it difficult to detect the imposture; so much so, that if it were possible they would persuade even true Christians that they were the Messiah. But that was not possible. ” Albert Barnes

        Here is a better explanation of who will fall prey, and why…
        2Th 2:9 even he, whose coming is according to the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
        2Th 2:10 and with all deceit of unrighteousness for them that are perishing; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
        2Th 2:11 And for this cause God sendeth them a working of error, that they should believe a lie:
        2Th 2:12 that they all might be judged who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

        Take special note of verses 10 and 11

        Now go back to Matt. 24:24 and look at the ‘elect’, in the Greek – eklektos, meaning chosen, elect, choice, select. Look at 2 Th. 2:10 again, who is deceived? Those who are ‘perishing’.

      • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 12:49 pm #

        Hello Maggie!

        I don’t think that true followers of Christ can be deceived. I think the “if” presupposes “possible.” I believe 2 Thessalonians 2:10 “deception directed against those who are perishing.” Followers of Christ do not fit that description.

        2 Thessalonians 2:9-2:10

        9The coming of the lawless one will be accompanied by the working of Satan, with every kind of power, sign, and false wonder, 10and with every wicked deception directed against those who are perishing, because they refused the love of the truth that would have saved them.

        Here 2:10 clarifies: “every wicked deception,” so there are many wicked deceptions: signs and wonders, false teachings, false prophecies, even one might say false teachers as they are a form of judgement on an apostate church.

        • Maggie August 4, 2017 at 1:04 pm #

          I didn’t mean to start a controversy. Perhaps someone more learned in biblical Greek can help me out in explaining the translation of “if possible” in this context. In the meantime, I will try to get the explanation from a credible source.

          • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 1:10 pm #

            Hi Maggie! It’s no controversy! We are all here learning from Him. I’m suspicious of those that woukd curtail questions.

          • lyn August 4, 2017 at 1:11 pm #

            Here’s a great bible study tool – http://biblehub.com/interlinear/matthew/24-24.htm

            Now, as for the ‘credible source’ you were already given one – God’s own word. Both Manny and I gave you 2 Thess. 2 where God states who falls prey to the delusion and why. Matthew 24:24 is a picture of what Satan is trying to do, and why. So, by God’s own word, who will fall prey to these lying signs and wonders? ” and with all deceit of unrighteousness for them that are perishing; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.” If I could, I would highlight ‘them that are perishing because the received not the love of the truth’. We needn’t go any farther for a credible source than God’s own word.

            I don’t see your previous comment as ‘starting a controversy’ I see it as error that needed to be corrected.

          • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 1:12 pm #

            I appeal to 2 Thessalonians 2:10……… “directed against those who are perishing”

          • Maggie August 4, 2017 at 1:38 pm #

            Lyn,
            I saw that Biblehub source, along with the commentaries there on this verse. The Pulpit Commentary states: “The translation ought to run, …, so as to lead astray, if possible even the elect, SIGNIFYING THE DIFFICULTY, NOT THE IMPOSSIBILITY, of drawing them away from the truth.” The commentator then expounds on what he thinks it further implies, which just shows his theological position, which I don’t necessary agree with. I am just looking at the actual Greek translation of “if possible” in this verse, which the capitalized words above explain.

            Unless someone beats me to it, I will research further to show this is not an aberrant translation of “if possible” that I’m coming up with. Sometimes, our theology is not as neat as we would like it.

    • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 12:27 pm #

      Very well put sister! My heart breaks continuously as I see fellow brothers and sisters completely uninterested in prophecy! So many years of fake prophets selling books and setting dates has gravely affected the discernment of many to see what is occurring right now! The rift in Christendom foretold to happen is here! Yet so many can’t or refuse to see it! Is it any wonder the book of Revelation is the last book? Given the conditions as they are, many are going to be caught unawares! Jesus commanded, not suggested, we watch! How many are truly watching?

      • Deej August 8, 2017 at 8:26 am #

        Hi Manny
        I don’t know where to start so here is a good a place as any.
        I have been tracking with a friend for 20 plus years , it all started with the mention of John Wimber and vineyard , then came the book by Benny Hinn Holy Spirit , then came the mention of Todd Bentley , then came then mention of Bill Johnson and Chris Vallaton , I’m sure you can see a pattern starting to take shape here.
        Conversation laced with health and wealth prosperity , dominionism , word of faith and the fold ministry man made doctrines started popping up with nearly every contact with this friend.
        It was like he was the master and I was the apprentice.
        The elitist mentality was astounding.
        Right from the start I have had red flags with all that was shared with me which started my journey on researching this nar movement , I was asked my opinion on it all which was the first time in 20 years and expressed my concerns about this movement.
        I was rebuked and warned that I was a little off the path and needed correction , I’ve been shunned and totally cut off with no contact.
        Reading all the testimonies on pirate Christian of people that have left this movement had prepared me for this type of reaction.
        I have another close friend that left his church when this nar garbage started to be introduced to the congregation.
        It’s amazing the delusion that has spread across Christendom.
        I will stand in the truth of Jesus and His words and will not be swayed.

        • Manny1962 August 8, 2017 at 11:57 am #

          Hey Deej,

          There’s a video on YouTube called The Church of Tares, it’s a bit long at three hours, but it’s eye opening and extremely informative, I highly recommend it. I posted a link to it on another article here. It’s on the “felt needs” article on the home page.

          I’m glad your eyes are open and your ears hear! As I was telling Lyn and Maggie the blindness and deafness in Churchianity is frightening. Keep praying my friend the time for our Lord’s return grows shorter!

  3. Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 12:32 pm #

    Those clamoring for signs and wonders will get their desire! Though it will be satanic in nature!

    Revelation 13:12-13:14

    The Beast from the Earth
    …”12And this beast exercised all the authority of the first beast and caused the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose mortal wound had been healed. 13And the second beast performed great signs to cause even fire from heaven to come down to earth in the presence of the people. 14Because of the signs it was given to perform on behalf of the first beast, it deceived those who dwell on the earth, telling them to make an image to the beast that had been wounded by the sword and yet had lived”

    This is what the “religious” world is being prepped for.

    • lyn August 4, 2017 at 12:42 pm #

      Exactly Manny. Those who refuse to hear God’s truth are in fact the very ones who will follow after this satanic nonsense. God preserves His true elect by His power, the Holy Spirit is sealed in our hearts and will not let us be dragged off by this evil. For that, we must praise our sovereign God!

  4. Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 1:04 pm #

    Do you remember the link I posted on the Wisconsin company chipping it’s employees? We’ll check this out! It’s hair raising how this is being accepted as the new normal!

    https://www.rt.com/usa/398297-chip-party-company-video/

    It’s a video taken on the day of “chipping party.”

  5. Sheryl August 4, 2017 at 1:06 pm #

    These people following such false concepts are obviously deprived of common sense and sanity, and don’t adhere to biblical teaching. They’ve accepted a lie in the face of contrasting reality. Scripture doesn’t teach any of their nonsense and fanciful dreams. This world’s moral decay is rotten and stinks, and there’s no way to reverse or transform it to usher in the return of Christ. Delirious thinking. Today’s self-appointed apostles and prophets are of the satanic breed, for no one who studies scripture finds a hint of man’s ability to overtake the world for Christ. They are blindly missing the whole point of mankind’s spiritual deadness and increasing corruption that leads to the wrath of God being poured out on the world. Satan will provide the deceiving experiences, signs and wonders they long for that they credit to God. It seems we’re being bombarded by depraved minds from all sides. As someone said, “A lie is still a lie even if everyone believes it and the truth is still the truth even if no one believes it.” But God has His chosen few, His little flock, His remnant who will always believe and defend His truth in the face of enormous deception.

    • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 1:08 pm #

      Amen Sheryl, amen! Remember, those that name Christ, will be the first to turn on you for standing up for HIS word!

      • Sheryl August 4, 2017 at 2:19 pm #

        Such circumstances serve to prove who our loyalty is to and, at times, requires us to be content to stand alone.

    • lyn August 4, 2017 at 1:14 pm #

      Good comment Sheryl, as Manny said, amen and amen.

      Manny, I saw a story earlier today concerning micro chipping, it seems it’s becoming more acceptable and is presented as a ‘great technology for man’. Again, praise God He holds us in the palm of His hand and under the shadow of His wing.

      • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 1:25 pm #

        This is becoming the “new norm,” it’s amazing how society is adapting to this……. To me, it’s a jaw-dropping moment! How can’t anyone, anyone, NOT see the implications?!!!!!!

        • lyn August 4, 2017 at 1:29 pm #

          Great insight Manny. When we consider how blinded the unsaved are, we can only fall on our faces and praise Him for opening our eyes. They will make this chip more and more enticing to a technology driven culture, see how easy it is to manipulate the minds of sinners? God will keep us from Satan’s deception because we love the truth, amen and amen!

          • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 2:32 pm #

            Sister it humbles me! It really does, to my core! We are so undeserving! He is so good and gracious to us sinners! We are living in the days Jesus spoke of, John saw a glimmer of while on Patmos, and we have been given this undeserved privilege to actually be in those days and be a witness to the revealing of our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus! We are not to be afraid, we are to proclaim from the rooftops ……..today is the day of salvation!

      • Linda Slager August 4, 2017 at 4:37 pm #

        Sheeple are following the goat blindly. Many don’t see what is happening. Things are happening fast and many Christians don’t see it and to me that is sad.

  6. Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 1:06 pm #

    Ladies and gents, that’s the future! Unfortunately for the unsaved, the future is here! More than ever we MUST get the word out!

    • Linda Slager August 4, 2017 at 4:41 pm #

      Amen! and Amen. I have found that I get poo pooed by some…even in my church. Perhaps they are afraid.

  7. lyn August 4, 2017 at 1:43 pm #

    Maggie,

    I think both Manny and I have shown you from 2 Thess. who gets deceived, and why. If that isn’t sastisfactory, then by all means, look for something that ‘fits’ your view.

  8. Maggie August 4, 2017 at 1:55 pm #

    Lyn,
    I’m not coming from “a view.” I’m looking at the actual Greek translation. It is challenging. I don’t want to believe that the elect could be led astray, but I also don’t think “being led astray” necessarily means a loss of salvation. Jesus was warning his disciples in Matthew 24.

    • lyn August 5, 2017 at 8:59 am #

      Maggie,

      My apologies for being overly harsh with you, it was inexcusable. I do pray the Lord brings you to a better understanding of His truth concerning this matter.

      • Maggie August 5, 2017 at 11:10 am #

        Thank you, Lyn.

  9. Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 2:23 pm #

    Maggie,

    Mark 13:34-13:37

    “34It is like a man going on a journey, having left his house, and having given his servants authority, to each one his work. And he commanded the doorkeeper that he should keep watch. 35Therefore watch—for you do not know when the master of the house comes: either at evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or morning— 36lest having come suddenly, he should find you sleeping. 37And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!”

    Jesus is commanding us to watch, we can’t be watching if we are deceived. Also see Luke 12:35-40

    35Be dressed for service and keep your lamps burning. 36Then you will be like servants waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks, they can open the door for him at once. 37Blessed are those servants whom the master finds on watch when he returns. Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve and will have them recline at the table, and he himself will come and wait on them. 38Even if he comes in the second or third watch of the night and finds them alert, those servants will be blessed!

    39But understand this: If the homeowner had known at what hour the thief was coming,e he would not have let his house be broken into. 40You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour you do not expect.”

    Again notice the urgency to be watching. How can we be watching if we are deceived?

    • rascott247 August 4, 2017 at 2:44 pm #

      Manny, Maggie

      I’ve seen varying opinions on “if possible” (ει δυνατον — ei dunaton).

      The elect in Matt 24-25 is the remnant of Israel not the Church. Israel has a different destiny and a different gathering than the Church (Matt 24:29-31). Matt 24:24 concerns time after the abomination of desolation (Matt 24:15). Israel’s re-gathering is foretold in numerous places throughout the OT (Deut 30:1-6, Isa 27:12-13, Micah 2:12-13). The Church’s gathering was a mystery (1Cor 15:51, not in the OT) and revealed through Paul. The signs and wonders on display today are not specifically what Jesus is telling of in Matt 24. Christians (members of the Body) can be bewitched, deceived if we fail to walk in the Spirit and abide in Christ (Gal 3:1, 2Cor 11:3-4).

      The ten virgins are waiting for their Master, the Church is waiting for her Groom. The Master returns from a wedding banquet the Church is the bride and will be at the wedding banquet. The Church will have no notice of the rapture but there are signs of the second coming.

      If a commandment is given to do something or not do something then it is very possible to not do it or do it.

      • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 2:51 pm #

        Thanks RS! ……..

      • Maggie August 4, 2017 at 3:06 pm #

        RS,
        Thank you for your response. As an aside, may I ask: Do you share the same theology that Les Feldick teaches? Just curious, as I have friends who listen to Feldick and it sounds like there are similarities.

        • rascott247 August 4, 2017 at 3:12 pm #

          My understandings is that Feldick is a Hyper-Dispenationalist I am more in the traditional Dispy camp. From my understanding Feldick separates Jew and gentile, where as I distinguish between the nations. Israel and the Church. He may even hold to different ways of salvation (justification). I don’t know much about him.

        • rascott247 August 4, 2017 at 3:27 pm #

          Basically Maggie I take a plain text reading of scripture allowing for figures of speech. I take the covenants (Biblical covenants not theological ones) and prophecy literally and avoid leaning on typology to formulate doctrine. I don’t reinterpret the OT by the NT. I try not to deduce my theology and to keep to an inductive (evidential) approach.

  10. Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 2:55 pm #

    Also Luke 21 34-36

    “34But watch yourselves, or your hearts will be weighed down by dissipation, drunkenness, and the worries of life—and that day will spring upon you suddenly like a snare. 35For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. 36So keep watch at all times, and pray that you may have the strength to escape all that is about to happen and to stand before the Son of Man.”

    • Maggie August 4, 2017 at 4:24 pm #

      Thanks, Manny! I appreciate your willingness to discuss. Iron sharpens iron.

      • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 4:45 pm #

        Amen! Sister amen!

  11. berlorac August 4, 2017 at 3:28 pm #

    Hey Maggie, Matthew 24:24 has to do the with the great Tribulation, a time in which the earth-dwellers will be tested. But the Church will not be here. Remember, Yeshua was teaching His disciples prior to His death, burial, and resurrection; virtually all of His teaching during His earthly ministry was to, and for, Israel in anticipation of the prophesied Kingdom being restored to Israel (Acts 1:6).

    It’s not possible that the elect would be deceived by the antichrist (AC) and his false prophet (FP) during the Tribulation. Matthew 24:24 has for its subject the incredible power of the AC and FP (and their minions); that’s the focus of the verse. Because of the great signs performed, many will be deceived, and even the elect would be deceived because of these great miracles if it were possible, but it’s not possible. There’s nothing special about ei dunaton (if possible) as far as the Greek goes; it’s simply a clause that the Lord adds to let us know how powerful the deception will be during the Trib. There is much deception now, but this is nothing compared with the deception to come.

    As lyn and manny pointed out, it is God who will send a working of error that those who are perishing will believe the lie (2 Thessalonians 2:10-12). Notice, He does not send the delusion to the elect, but to the lost; therefore the elect of the Trib period will be “protected” from the delusion so that they will clearly see the two very distinct sides: God and Satan.

    • Maggie August 4, 2017 at 4:21 pm #

      B,
      Thanks for the input. Seems like I’m going to be taking a closer look at Matt. 24 again this weekend!

  12. Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 3:40 pm #

    B, RS…

    Would you describe history as linear or circular? I’m curious because I read an article describing the patterns of history repeating themselves while obviously time being linear. One example being Hitler as a proto antichrist and the Jewish persecution and Holocaust, of course then you have Antiochus Epiphanes, and his resemblance to antichrist. I found the whole notion intriguing.

  13. berlorac August 4, 2017 at 3:54 pm #

    Manny, in keeping with a Hebraic and Biblical understanding, I’m very much linear. Until God called out Israel, humanity on the whole was circular. Israel stood apart as a nation of history with prophets who foretold of real events on a timeline. Then, with Christ coming into the world, we have a major point on the timeline that will never happen again. The Cross will not be repeated.

    Hellenic thought has always been circular and that’s one of the reasons the Stoics had a hard time with Paul at Mars Hill. Life after death for them was the soul going out and “waiting” for everything to start over again.

    But do we see “history repeating itself?” I think we see types and antitypes in that Antiochus Epiphanes was the type of the antichrist to come. Remember, first the natural and then the spiritual (1 Corinthians 15:46). We see this throughout Scripture. As far as Hitler goes, he’s not a type in the Biblical sense, although we’ve seen men like him throughout history that are marked by unimaginable evil.

    • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 3:59 pm #

      Excellent! Thanks B! Did you get a chance to see the video link I posted above? On the “chipping party?”

      • berlorac August 4, 2017 at 4:18 pm #

        I saw the video. I’m not much into “signs of the times” anymore. So, how easy is it to put GPS into a chip? Easy. But how easy is it to remove the “middle man” (the credit card) and make the direct link between the chip and a global database that includes your financial accounts?

        • Manny1962 August 4, 2017 at 4:49 pm #

          Well the middle man is pushing for a cashless economy. I posted a link to Visa’s press release, they’re giving out rewards for businesses that start accepting plastic only. Replacing a Visa with a chip is not that far fetched, and you’re right instalingl tracking software is so simple. What I see here is how “easy” and willing these folks are to accept this intrusion.

  14. G J August 4, 2017 at 6:43 pm #

    In the Lord’s Prayer… what comes after us forgiving others of their trespasses against us? Asking God to… lead us not into temptation and deliver us from evil.

    Keep the Holy Spirit healthy and happy in the heart of flesh of the New Covenant… and we’ll be protected from evil and deception (Proverbs 1:33; 2:11-13; 4:5-6).

    If we abuse… grieve… the Holy Spirit… we can bring abominations into the temple… i.e. letting Satan into our hearts (think Ananias and Sapphira)… just like the antichrist will at “the abomination of desolation” during Daniel’s 70th week.

    The same for the cashless issue… pursue the “other gold” (faith tried by fire) (Proverbs 3:13-18; Revelation 3:18) because Christ warned that cash… gold… the treasures of the world… are subject to theft.

  15. Darrel August 5, 2017 at 9:30 am #

    “Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ’ and will deceive many.” Matt 24:4 & 5 (Mark 13:5 & Luke 21:8). ‘Take heed’ or watch, look out, beware, etc., don’t be caught unaware, watch for the deception that is coming. What deception? Believing that ‘another Christ’ is the genuine article. The quote Lyn provided from Albert Barnes (8-4-17 @ 12:40pm) sums it up This is the specific ‘deception’ to which Christ referred. It is the “strong delusion” Paul spoke about in 2 Thes. 2:8-12 as has already been capably dealt with here. The target being ‘those that perish’ because they ‘did not love the truth’. It is on par with the hardening of Pharaoh’s heart and that of Rev.17:17. This is the ‘end time’ and final deception, so that means we’re safe for now, right? Wrong. Throughout Scripture we find many times a foreshadow or precursor to the main event—how many are there of Christ, His death and resurrection? The same is true for falling for a false Christ; this began with Cain and continues unabated to the present. It has taken many forms, changes, and permutations, but the end game is always the same: the replacement of the Son of God as the Savior of the world. Today’s version is no less insidious and damning and has been with us for centuries, enhanced and encouraged by those who have fallen prey to it’s lie as is always the case, no matter what form the lie takes.

    This lie has been and is currently being taught, defended to the point of insanity (remember Diana of the Ephesians? Acts 19:34), and is a direct cause of the state of the “church” as seen in the world. It is a blatant, covert, even military style attempt to replace the Lord Jesus with this not so new idol. One is hard pressed to find a pastor and his flock that do not champion this lie, though there will always be some that do not. The promoters of this lie exhibit no fear of God as they replace the Lord Jesus with their idol. Their use and claim to wisdom of the Scriptures is seen as admirable by their supporters, yet their are completely devoid of the wisdom that is from above, they do not have the Mind of Christ. Their lack of the fear of God disqualifies them from having any godly wisdom at all. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” Psa. 111:10. Since they are fearless when it comes to replacing the Lord Jesus with their not-so-new idol it follows true that they do not fear God. Their idol claims to be necessary to the salvation of a man because Christ’s death and resurrection is said to be insufficient by itself to save a man without the enhancement given to man by this idol. All the labels, titles, definitions, and arguments aside, this idol boils down to really only one thing: man worships himself. The name of this idol is Arminianism, or “free-will” of man to approach God without Him first calling a man to Himself. It is a classic example of the mind of the wicked one to de-throne God from His rightful position as Lord over His own Creation by replacing His Sovereign will with the will and whim of a pile of dust. Classic idol. “Great is the free will of man.” More powerful and more necessary than the One who created them. Talk about “replacement theology!” These idol worshippers have negated the most fantastic, glorious, and everlasting work of their Creator in favor of their pitiful efforts to save themselves—and the NAR clowns lead the pack.

    • lyn August 5, 2017 at 3:27 pm #

      This is true Darrel. Michael Bunker wrote a book on the Jesuits and how they infiltrated protestantism with ‘free will’ in order to tear down God’s truth and place man as his own ‘god’. The book is entitled swarm of locusts, it is very well researched and laid out, particularly chapter two. It’s hard to defend free will after reading what Michael wrote, not to mention the fact that the bible does not state man has free will to know spiritual matters – 1Co 2:14 Now the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them, because they are spiritually judged.

      Swarm of locusts is available at https://elijah1757.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/swarms_of_locusts.pdf

    • Q August 5, 2017 at 3:45 pm #

      So belief in TULIP is necessary for salvation?

      • rascott247 August 5, 2017 at 4:25 pm #

        Q
        Almost all 5 pointers I ask will not say for certain that they are regenerate if they did then (P) goes down the drain. (P) is not the same as eternal security but stands for perseverance of the saints (the saints do the persevering) meaning some faith can be “spurious” and they will have to persevere to the end of life in faith and good works to see if their faith is real. Now if they are not sure that they are regenerate what makes them think that they understand the things of the Spirit, say like their “doctrines of grace”? If they are natural men then according to their take on 1Cor 2:14 they cannot possibly understand correctly. They can’t even become aware of their sinful condition and need for salvation without first being regenerated (made spiritual). But they aren’t sure if they are natural or spiritual. They are surer that they are correct about theology and Spiritual things then they are that they are regenerate.

        BTW Michael Bunker is a “Christian Agrarian”. Here are some quotes from him I found on the web. You can look him up.
        “There are mysteries in the Bible that can only be understood by an Agrarian mindset”
        “Only Agrarians have the proper foundation for proper theology.”
        “Agrarianism is the only means by which man can truly obey God”
        “Return to the garden in the physical and you will return to the garden in the spiritual.”
        “It will be given unto us to understand spiritual mysteries when we put our hands in the land and the Bible in our minds.”
        “You can read the Bible all day and not understand it unless your ‘hands are in the soil’.”

        • lyn August 5, 2017 at 4:29 pm #

          I was NOT promoting Bunker, rather, I was pointing to his research on ‘free will’ and the connection to the Jesuits. You would do well to read where your ‘theology’ originates.

          • lyn August 5, 2017 at 4:30 pm #

            Free will is nothing more than the pride of man rearing its ugly head and demanding credit for helping God to save, as though God needs puny, sinful man’s help.

      • lyn August 5, 2017 at 4:28 pm #

        What does the bible say?

        Joh 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which sent me draw him: and I will raise him up in the last day.
        2Th 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks to God alway for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, for that God chose you from the beginning unto salvation in sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:

        Joh 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he the right to become children of God, even to them that believe on his name:
        Joh 1:13 which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
        Eph 2:8  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 
        Eph 2:9  Not of works, lest any man should boast. 
        ‘And that’ in verse 8 is a neuter demonstrative pronoun, not agreeing with ‘faith, grace or salvation’ in gender or in number. This was done purposely by the writer so as to NOT point to any one thing, rather, it points to all that precedes it. So, ‘grace, faith, salvation’ are not of you, rather they are a gift of God. This text alone blows ‘free will’ out of the water. All appointed by God WILL come, because if the work of the triune God.
        One more –
        Act 13:48  And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed. 

        God draws, the Spirit quickens, and faith is gifted to those whom He has elected unto life, all because of the finished work of Christ. Who wrote the above verses, Calvin or God? How can the ‘will’ of man not be affected and tainted by sin and make right decisions concerning spiritual matters? That is why Paul wrote what he did in 1 Cor. 2:14, along with this from Jeremiah 17:9, ‘The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? What does ‘heart’ refer to? From Brown Driver Briggs, “inner man, mind will, heart”. What is it about the ‘heart’ that this verse points to? The whole inner man is ‘deceitful and desperately wicked’, what does that mean? From Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance on deceitful – crooked, deceitful, polluted. Now, desperately wicked, “desperately sick (1), incurable (6), sick (1), woeful (1).” So, the ‘will’ of man is described as incurable, sick, deceitful, crooked. And we are to believe that the will can rightly accept Jesus on it’s own power? Not according to God’s word.

        Here’s another, (Joh 3:19)  And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
        Here is the judgment of God, and why this judgment looms over sinners: men ‘love’ darkness. To ‘love’ here means ‘take pleasure in, long for , to welcome, to entertain, to be fond of, to love dearly’. This love goes down deep and has a firm grasp on every sinner. Commentary from David Guzik says it nicely, “What keeps people from belief in Jesus and salvation? It is sin, or is it unbelief? Really it is both, because people will not believe because they love their sin.” This is from Matthew Henry, “Wretched man is in love with his sickness, in love with his slavery, and will not be made free, will not be made whole. [3.] The true reason why men love darkness rather than light is because their deeds are evil. They love darkness because they think it is an excuse for their evil deeds, and they hate the light because it robs them of the good opinion they had of themselves, by showing them their sinfulness and misery.” Christ and His gospel exposes the sins of man, confronts the sinner straightforward and demands him/her to leave their sins. They must part with what it is they love the most. They are confronted by God and His Christ concerning their heinous rebellion and they will never part from this natural love of sin apart from God’s mercy and power bringing them to Himself.
        Coming to the light condemns the sinner, for their deeds are evil. They know their deeds are evil so they avoid the light, thus, they think they can avoid condemnation. The conscience testifies against them, so they silence their conscience. Creation cries out against sinners, so they deny the Creator and uphold a lie – evolution. Sinners know murder is a sin, so they slaughter the unborn for the sake of ‘women’s rights’. Sinners know homosexuality is wrong, so they call it ‘gay’. Sinners know marriage is supposed to be a man and a woman, so they re-define marriage and usurp the authority of the most High God. Sinners know idolatry is wrong, so they suppress the truth of God’s word and fashion multiple ‘gods’ to worship, including the ‘god’ of self. Sinners love their darkness – and the more they suppress God’s truth, the deeper into that darkness they go. They will never come to the light; to Christ and His gospel truth, ‘lest his deeds should be reproved’ [vs. 20] – or ‘  reprove, rebuke, discipline, expose, show to be guilty’
        Here is the Thayer Definition of ‘reproved’:
        1) to convict, refute, confute
        1a) generally with a suggestion of shame of the person convicted
        1b) by conviction to bring to the light, to expose
        2) to find fault with, correct
        2a) by word
        2a1) to reprehend severely, chide, admonish, reprove
        2a2) to call to account, show one his fault, demand an explanation
        2b) by deed
        2b1) to chasten, to punish
        The sin nature does NOT want to be confronted by a thrice holy God. The doctrine of ‘free will’ refuses to acknowledge this truth. Sinners will never come to Christ because the will of man is bent on darkness and hates the light.
        This is why earlier in this chapter the Lord told Nicodemus ‘ye must be born again’. It is this new birth, being ‘born from above’ that enables the sinner to ‘see’, to comprehend, understand, discern Christ and His gospel.

        No one said you have to believe in ‘tulip’ to be saved, the only way you can be saved is IF God elects you, re-births you and gifts you with faith to believe.

        Free willers seem have a high view of themselves and no understanding of their own vileness. No one sees their vileness until God breaks them over their sins and saves their wretched souls. That is the teaching of God, and NOT ‘Calvin’, who was a fallible sinner like every person every born.

        • lyn August 5, 2017 at 4:45 pm #

          One great contest, between the religion of Arminius, and the religion of Jesus Christ, is, who shall stand entitled to the praise and glory of a sinner’s salvation? Conversion decides this point at once; for I think, that, without any imputation of uncharitableness, I may venture to say, that every truly awakened person, at least when he is under the shine of God’s countenance upon his soul, will fall down upon his knees, with this hymn of praise ascending from his heart, “Not unto me, O Lord, not unto me, but to Thy Name, give the glory: I am saved not for my righteousness, but for Thy mercy and Thy truth’s sake..” August Toplady, from http://www.fivesolas.com/toplady.htm

        • Enz August 14, 2017 at 8:14 am #

          Can people STOP saying my sexuality so much. I’m sick of it nobody ever says the word heterosexuality or “straight” ever it’s ALWAYS my sexual orientation. I read this article and liked it and I went to the comments to see if it mentions my orientation and sure enough it did and I’m not surprised. Why do people keep saying my orientation? It’s so worn out already I don’t know why people keep using the word it’s been used so harshly but “heterosexuality” never was used harshly. Also my orientation is called that “g” word because it means that. Also sinners know Heterosexuality is a sin too so they call it “straight” also how come you don’t get mad at people that call heterosexulity “straight”?

  16. G J August 5, 2017 at 3:59 pm #

    The Holy Spirit is our “eyes and ears” of God. Keep Him strong and vibrant during these times.

    How? By obedience to God.

    It worked for Jesus Christ… Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows (Hebrews 1:8-11; Psalm 45:6-7; Proverbs 7:4-5).

  17. Darrel August 5, 2017 at 8:06 pm #

    Perhaps a little reading of the Word of God would be helpful. 1 John 5:10. As for some self proclaimed “five pointers” (another ego laden title) I know of two of the most popular pulpit jackals in America who make that claim and spout multiple heresies with impunity. James White is one and John MacArthur is the other. JM’s list is probably twice as long as JW’s including not knowing when he was saved (which means he never was). Listen to it for yourselves at his own website, in his own voice: sermon # 80-33. Being a “five pointer” is just as meaningless as being an “Arminian/free-willer.

    To be fair and balanced, I’ve never talked with or read a free willer who was not severely double minded and unstable in all his ways, especially concerning the Word of God and the Work of the Spirit and the Work of Christ. Not only can one’s “salvation” be lost due to sin, but one can “opt out” of salvation (supposedly) and willfully “walk away from Christ” which is nothing more than simple rebellion, the same rebellion they have been in all their life in spite of any claim to “salvation.” According to the Arminian/free willer God must share His glory with the one that has chosen God and “accepted Christ as personal savior”—such nonsense is nowhere to be found in Scripture, yet this mantra has been elevated to the same status as this ‘verse’: “God helps those that help themselves” which is found where in Scripture? Again, for a man to deny that God is totally Sovereign in all that He does is the thought of a man who does not fear God, has no spiritual knowledge, sense, or capabilities or the wherewithal to extract himself from this spiritual death and will therefore die in his own sins. To believe in and preach free willism is only one short step away from universalism—God saves everyone because Jesus was born, leaving out the death and resurrection of the Savior. Again, Christ is replaced in their fantasy theology. The A/FWs make themselves easy prey for all kinds of heresies like dominionism and other new age doctrines of demons. Their “spiritual growth” will be stunted, anemic, and actually nonexistent. Their ability to defend the faith is in the same boat, because the “faith” that they “defend” is not the “faith once for all delivered to the saints” Jude 3, it is the faith that a man has in himself. The redeemed have been saved by grace through faith or not at all. Resting on the work of one’s will is not going to result in salvation, it will result in false “assurance”—the kind that must be constantly pumped up—and a fake “salvation” that will not garner entrance into the Kingdom of God. Rom. 11:5 & 6. The garbage that comes out of NAR is a direct result of decades of unchecked and unchallenged preaching of the lie of A/FW. Perhaps one of the most dangerous aspects of this lie is that it necessitates calling God a liar: “there is none who seeks after God” Rom.3:11. But to listen to these hawks of insanity one MUST seek God first in order that He may be “found”; again, placing themselves above their Creator and negating the Word of God. What a sad lot these folk are! Jump on board with them at the risk of your eternal soul. God will have mercy on all His elect, and still commands all men everywhere to repent. To insist that one’s will is immune to God’s will and commands is simple rebellion and insanity.

    • Q August 6, 2017 at 4:28 pm #

      Darrel,

      It appears you don’t understand what you are attempting to confidently affirm. I say attempting because your writing is convoluted and has logical fallacies. Do you know the different Protestant soteriologies i.e., Reformed, Traditional, Arminian, Lutheran and can you explain the differences? People who can would never say the things you are saying. Since you are attempting to condemn such a large swath of Christians maybe you would take the time to explain each, their differences, and where they are correct and where they are incorrect and which are “free willers”. Tell us clearly what your soteriology is, why your’s is correct from the bible and why everyone else will be in hell. Would you also condemn Leighton Flowers, William Birch, Dave Hunt et al., all of whom understand God’s sovereignty differently than you?

      • Darrel August 6, 2017 at 6:16 pm #

        Q,

        I guess you thought I was kidding or something when I told you I would not answer any of your questions unless and until you answered everyone of mine—which you have not done. Therefore, I will answer nothing from you. But I do have a suggestion: try defending the faith once for all delivered to the saints if you can, if you even know what that entails since there is little evidence in your comments that you do. Try standing for the Lord Jesus instead of every Tom, Dick, and Harry that comes along. I hope you are able.

        • Q August 6, 2017 at 9:33 pm #

          No Darrel I didn’t take your rant seriously at all just your false teaching.

  18. Manny1962 August 5, 2017 at 10:17 pm #

    “God helps those that help themselves”……… that’s straight from the pit of hell, I can’t begin to count the times I’ve heard people say that! It’s demonic since it denies Christ Jesus, and His work on the cross. If depraved man could help himself, he wouldn’t need Christ. I’ve always heard this connected with works oriented salvation/religion. I find it stomach turning every time I’ve heard it.

  19. Michael August 6, 2017 at 6:07 pm #

    Finally, I made it through the comments. Where does one add to the wild direction these comments amounted to? Let me try this.

    There is one truth, that, each of us would agree. We might also agree that due to various factors such as our culture, mentors, education, friends, personal choices to include various types of leaders and even our preferences- we have come to see things as we think they are. That of course does not make us correct or make others wrong. There is still one truth and only God knows all.

    I cannot solve the above dilemma any more than I can change this world, but I can offer this guarantee to which most of you will reject because YOU are already deceived- at least in part.

    What comprises Christianity is not earthly but heavenly. Sure, their is an earthly outworking as we are called to act- acting is part of being obedient. But every time you or I speak of or place emphasis upon men, “Are we not resting upon our earthly morals and self-confidence?” And what have men of the recent past left for us to follow?

    1. Continue to build religious edifices.
    2. Continuing to form religious organizations that fracture the body of Christ into even more sects
    3. Continue a religious hierarchy among Christians
    4. Self-appointed leaders using titles and positions among the saints
    5. Placing confidence in worldly or so-called Christian leaders/working with them and voting
    6. Emphasizing the importance of education over and above a personal knowledge of Christ
    7. Giving lip service to the actual priesthood of believers
    = controlling what the saints do- inside and outside of the “church” (which these men still to this day advertise as a building) AND what they believe (such as the man made invention of TULIP. (not saying some, most or all of either T,U,L,I or P is right or wrong) but the use of the acronym only serves to divide people throughout history. It is only one manner among thousands where emphasizing the earthly serves to destroy the practice of the heavenly.

    I wrote the 7 lies above to simply show what the Reformed Church believes in part. You may not, but the founders of the so-called Reformation were not just merely deceived about these unscriptural practices which continue to this day, but most were even murderers! What does the Bible say happens to murderers? My Bible says they will in no way enter the kingdom of God.

    The fact is, those who supposedly founded the Reformation were very much like these folk of the NAR and many still are! In fact, in many ways they are much more scriptural than those claiming to be Reformed. The latter are surely deceived yes, but the former leaders are too! Both groups rule over the saints, tell them what to believe by using countless media, books, conferences (most for money) all the while telling you what the Scriptures actually say- to them. Are not both groups building an earthly kingdom? Who builds earthly kingdoms? Not spiritual saints, not those walking worthy- not those actually dying to themselves as Christ commands and leaving a truly Scriptural example for others to follow.

    People. STOP listening to earthly men. If it takes going and hiding in a cave for a year or two to learn to really listen to God than go do it. I don’t need to hear any more foolishness about which earthly denomination is correct or which one echoes the truth more than the other- none of them do. I don’t need to read one more book from some self-appointed religious authority (Reformed or NAR) and I certainly don’t need them to think for me- and neither do you.

    It is true…..those of the NAR will likely kill many of us thinking they are doing God a favor. The only difference between them and your religious authority (whomever it is you have chosen) is they are blackballing anyone who won’t agree with them and even resorting to murdering their opponents with anger, rage, slander- all the while claiming to be the arbitrators of what is actually true.

    At best, these “leaders” are offering you an assurance that you are the elect (if you obey them and parrot and promote what they say) and at worst-

    The purveyors of the false concept of church (with all its associated activities) which makes you think you’re saved and obedient……..building the very thing God long ago condemned and promises in the future to destroy.

    Go love your neighbor………and keep your preferred earthly religion out of it….you’ll be much more effectual and far more pleasing to God

    • Darrel August 6, 2017 at 6:22 pm #

      “Stop listening to earthly men.”

      Good advice.

      I’ll not listen to you, Michael.

      • Michael August 6, 2017 at 6:29 pm #

        Hello Darrel. I believe my comments warranted more than such a silly response. I know your not that stupid to think I meant a human being. If this is the type of rhetoric you offer to this thread (reminiscent of poking fun at people or mocking them), than frankly you’re in sin. That’s not something God takes lightly, nor should anyone else who actually cares about you.

      • SusanJ August 7, 2017 at 3:14 am #

        [ “Stop listening to earthly men.”

        Good advice.

        I’ll not listen to you, Michael. ]

        Darrel. That was not a nice way to write to Michael. I enjoyed reading what he wrote and found it refreshing. And in some ways more in line with the way I think perhaps, according to scripture. Although not saying that to form any kind alliances with anyone or to be called his “bud”. You don’t have to ‘listen’ to him at all. Neither do you have to make such a comment and spoil it for the rest of us. You asked earlier that people speak direct to you rather than around you so I have done. But I prefer not to receive another rant from you.

        Thank you for considering. This is not written in any malicious way either.

    • Q August 6, 2017 at 8:48 pm #

      Michael,

      I appreciate you taking the time to write a thoughtful comment. I’m not sure what you meant by going to a cave but I don’t think you meant what would be classified as some type of mysticism. I have a similar view of the reformers. I personally do not believe what we are seeing in most churches is what God desires at all and I’m not a follower of earthly ideas but rather believe the bible is the only place a person needs to go to know the truth, the bible and the Holy Spirit. At the same time I have been very much helped by men and their ability to teach both audible and written. I also believe we can judge different doctrines men hold and should because without doing this we would not really know what a person is saying, many times it’s the same words with different meanings.

      The reason I brought up the different denominational soteriologies is because although I believe them to be flawed I would not call believing one of them to be “the lie” in 2nd Thessalonians 2 as Darrel has said. I think that is utter foolishness The Lie is Antichrists claim be God, Jesus said, “I have come in My Fathers name and you did not receive me: if another comes in his own name him you will receive.

      I’ve seen people come on the comments here with some strange doctrine that they really cannot explain and don’t really understand what others believe and use not believing the strange doctrine for all the ills in Christianity. I think I’m seeing it again. So I wanted check to be certain.

      I believe we can compare the different doctrines on soteriologies to what the bible says but not whether the person is condemned for believing one as Darrel has done. There are people from all of these groups who have put there faith in Christ’s death for the payment of their sins and His Resurrection for their justification, in fact they may not even be able to explain that. The Gospel is so simple a child can hear it and believe and to say otherwise would be a false gospel.

      • Michael August 6, 2017 at 11:15 pm #

        Hello Q,

        We surely live in an age of confusion…..it is always wise to ask for clarification as you have done and I appreciate that. Many wrong and deceived people are actually Christians….most of them are to one degree or another I suppose.

        No. I am not endorsing any type of mysticism nor do I. I’m very familiar with those within and without endorsing contemplative prayer which is merely a “Christianized” form of TM- or so they think. I used the “cave” because for most of those I converse with that’s what it would take for them to hear clearly from God…..shutting everything and everyone else OFF for awhile. And while I’m at it, I do believe God still leads us individually (even to do specific things) contrary to Reformed thinking that God only speaks through His Word/Son through the Bible. That is unfortunate for them, though I certainly understand why they have adopted that particular view. Their are all manner/types of people hearing all kinds of things, speaking all kinds of things, their words unjudged and actions unaccountable. That is certainly not our Father’s desire. Even the prophets in 1 Corinthians 14 were to have their words judged by all.

        It’s very sad this state we find ourselves in these days. As Christians we long to help but so often that entails pulling all the weeds in an individuals life before they can begin to see clearly. First they have to be willing which is rare, and then they have to be able to endure the pain and shame that coincides with being duped all along. Then there’s more……an entire willingness to abandon everything and everyone who stands opposed to the truth. (THE HARD PART)

        This last part about abandonment is vital. I lived some 18 years where I’ve had to choose to move with God or remain with men. A hundred reasons/excuses can be given (God wants me to fellowship, so much good being done, my pastor’s not like that, our church is different) but it all comes down to this……will YOU follow Me……even if no one else does?

        But here’s the vital difference I’ve learned. When I used to leave groups or people I always disconnected completely from them. I never wanted to see them again and wrote them off……kind of like what people do on here if you don’t completely share their position/version of the truth. They make a habit of maligning you…..its a defense mechanism they use to solidify their own position. They don’t always do it on purpose….it’s just become habit. Sadly in doing so, they (or we) lose the benefit of what they may offer, maybe the little slice of truth God sent them to deliver to us. I don’t want to miss that these days. I want to believe all things….that’s what my God denotes as being loving.

        That doesn’t mean I’m naaive. I’m still listening, watching, judging rightly. But there’s more now……I’m listening to learn but also to give what little I might have that may benefit them. It’s amazing where spiritual conversations can go and to what depth as long as no one asks where you go to church or who your pastor is. Does any of that even matter in the greater scope of things? Why not…….brother, sister, “What has the Lord been showing/teaching you lately? How has He blessed you? Have you been privileged to suffer for His name’s sake? Are you rejoicing in your sufferings girl? Brother, have you been sharing Jesus this week?

        You chose to view my comments above as thoughtful and they were meant to be just that. Instead of a backlash about “views” we can simply share a common faith/experience without all the clutter that could have clouded what is better. It’s a choice and it’s as simple as recognizing not the supposed good in men, but the grace in others despite their many bumps, bruises and wanderings from what is sound doctrine. We never have to compromise the truth, but we must embrace the pitfalls, wrongs and sins of men if we truly care about them and desire to steer them aright.

        Here is good advice I read once (applies to God’s work in us as well as what ought to be our patient work with others) first hand or online….

        “When God desires to make an oak tree it takes a hundred years, when He wants to make a squash it takes six months”

    • Darrel August 6, 2017 at 8:56 pm #

      Michael,

      Your “stealth attack” on Scripture can be chalked up to ignorance of it (that is not an insult, but a statement of fact). man may have invented tulip, but man had nothing to do with the biblical precepts of election, predestination, and choice of God. Even a cursory read of the Bible will show these things took place before the Creation, a fact many deny and ignore in order to promote their own agenda, whatever that may be, which is to deny Christ His rightful place as King of kings and Lord of lords.

      You said that “most (of the reformers) were murderers” and we are just supposed to believe you because you said it? That ain’t gonna happen. Paul was a murderer, David was a murderer, what of them? Your “bible” forgot to tell you that God forgives murderers. Granted, there are many heresies in the “reformed camp” like infant baptism, their a-mill stance, not to mention nearly all have ecumenical. You think I subscribe to their nonsense, but I do not.

      If you weren’t speaking about a human being, then what, who? Say what you mean.

      • Michael August 6, 2017 at 10:16 pm #

        Darrel, thank you for once again mocking me and putting words in my mouth. Not knowing me, you cannot possibly know what my estimate of Scripture actually is. The fact is, I highly esteem God’s Words as much as you seem to do.
        I thought I made clear that I did not necessarily disagree with what the acronym stands for, actually I do somewhat (but why give you another reason to possibly attack me again) but I’m against the use of man’s inventions like TULIP. I wasn’t trying to get into a long dispute about what was and wasn’t correct about TULIP on this site.

        No Darrel, I would never hope you believe anything because I or anyone else says so. Most of those commenting upon these sites are fairly intelligent and studied and already know that most of what the Reformed Camp heralds as their “heroes” were murderers. Of course God forgives sin, but when you or I see a regular ongoing lifestyle of sin in any individual that ought to give us pause and consider their real state before God. (consider the lifestyle and earthly kingdom building of today’s Reformed leaders) Are you really convinced these people are following the Bible? Do what these people teach in practice even remotely resemble a simple, small, accountable, interactive fellowship of the saints? My 30+ years as a Christian tells me otherwise. The most dire warnings in the book of Hebrews are directed at those who willfully continue to emphasize what is old (done away) verses the better way in Christ. The seven things in my original comment are all opposed to the new way in Christ and yet they are still practiced everywhere by so-call “Christian” leaders. Have you never even considered why this is so?

        I’m not saying you subscribe to anything specifically as I don’t know you. My comments were in relation to reformed theology in general- yet my criticisms would apply to any particular religious institution.

        Lastly, I was speaking against worldly and earthly wisdom. I hate to do this to Manny but here goes:

        God helps those who help themselves- this is worldly wisdom. It is false and derives from the corrupt hearts of men. TULIP is also worldly wisdom, because it aims to take truths of God and consolidate them into man’s limited mindset. It warps the truth of God in many ways, but here’s just one way.

        Election in Romans 9. Who is Paul talking about and what is he talking about? The Reformed camp has and continues to use this verse to define who is saved and who is not based upon God’s sovereign choice. But is the text really referring to individuals? A simple look into the Old Testament shows that these individual are representative of two nations- and that what God sovereignly decreed was that one nation would be chosen over another and one brother serve the other. So why do the Reformers rarely seem to make this clear? I don’t know. One thing I do know- God does not arbitrarily send people to hell for no reason at all- for example, just because they are born. This defies all common sense and logic and could never give rest to anyone who has lost someone very young. What would you tell such a mother or father in despair- “they’ll be saved if their elect.” A ten year old could give better comfort to such a one.

        I’m opposed to anything that shrouds reality and if we really were devoted to Scripture as we say we would be devoted to Scripture. When a man puts his comments under scripture in footnotes that is sometimes helpful- but its not Scripture. It’s a small jump from there before he puts his name on a Bible- that is worldly wisdom and leads people to adopt “theories and understandings” of the commenter as truth.

        One more. The religious title of Pastor is worldly wisdom. There was never a title for any Christian in the New Testament. Sure, some individuals were shepherds (among the people) and did contribute their God given ability to teach and lead others. But their is no such position nor title among the saints. Both title and position are traits that businesses have- they exist to denote who has more authority than other people do- they prove who is in charge…..and so it is with the word “office” in the Bible. That is a mistranslation……their were never offices in the Bible….just family members with various gifts and abilities.

        Yes, we can and do learn from other people. But ultimately we do not merely need intellectual knowledge but an actual embracing first hand of the truth as it is in Jesus Christ. Did not Paul pray that God would give the saints at Ephesus a spirit of wisdom and revelation into the knowledge of Him? It’s that knowledge and revelation (not new revelation) that enables one to escape the fray of conflict that always ensues whenever any of our speech is anchored in anything this world and wisdom has to offer. The only reason any two Christians cannot get along is this: one or both of them have not entirely died to anything and everything that derives outside of God Himself. Meditate upon that one my friend.

        Is that what people are seeing in you, in me?

        • Manny1962 August 6, 2017 at 10:49 pm #

          Good evening Michael, I hope tonight finds you well. Can you please clarify this statement?

          “Lastly, I was speaking against worldly and earthly wisdom. I hate to do this to Manny but here goes:

          God helps those who help themselves- this is worldly wisdom. It is false and derives from the corrupt hearts of men. TULIP is also worldly wisdom, because it aims to take truths of God and consolidate them into man’s limited mindset. It warps the truth of God in many ways, but here’s just one way.”

          You don’t think that man can he!p himself when it comes to his salvation? I was saying I totally disagree with such a statement, I’ve heard that statement ALMOST exclusively when Evangelical Christianity was being compared and contrasted with Roman Catholicism. Faith, salvation, repentance is a gift from God. Man cannot cooperate with God in anyway when it comes to the efficacy and exclusiveness of Jesus Christ’s work on the cross. We don’t bring anything to party as they say. We are filthy little beggars who do not deserve anything from a gracious God. Thanks!

          • Michael August 6, 2017 at 11:33 pm #

            I was not accusing you of anything Manny. I just didn’t want to bring up again what you/I/others dislike so much- that particular statement. I hate it too!

            I won’t go into what I think about all this, only to say I do not agree that regeneration precedes faith. What would the point be to call people to faith and repentance if this was not necessary?

            I will also say this: Salvation is of the Lord and there is not and will not be anything anyone will ever be able to boast about before God. Man cannot contribute to his own salvation…..He is at the mercy of God entirely.

            Now if one chooses to call this a contradiction so be it. I can think of many, many more so-called contradictions in the Bible. I do not have to have all knowledge to be saved, I can and may be wrong about a whole bunch of things! Silly me.

            I am not Reformed, I am not Catholic and I’m not evangelical or typified by any worldly wisdom or set of words. In fact, people are going to have a pretty difficult time labeling me cause I ain’t like nobody else….cept maybe My Father……I kinda resemble Him yet He’s a whole lot smarter and wiser than I’d ever hope to be. Praise His name alone!

          • Manny1962 August 7, 2017 at 7:30 am #

            Good morning Michael,

            “I was not accusing you of anything Manny.”

            I didn’t think you were, I just needed to clarify if you agreed with statement. I wasn’t sure. I myself do not follow any man. I have no rockstar pastors I’m fond of. The gospels are so simple a child can understand. Man has a way of taking the simple and making it complex, we must be as a child…….helpless and unconditional.

            Maranatha! God bless!

  20. rascott247 August 6, 2017 at 10:00 pm #

    People are not predestined to become believers. Believers who have the Spirit of adoption (through faith Rom 8:15) are predestined to the actual adoption i.e. the redemption of our bodies (Rom 8:23; Eph 1:5, 11). The adoption is what is predestined and this is for people who have believed and are in Christ.

    Election means chosen and a sovereign God can make many choices. He chose the angels who did not rebel with Satan. Israel was the chosen nation to record scripture and to carry the Messianic line, the seed of Abraham and always have a remnant of believers. It was Israel that God made covenants with yet not all Israel believed. Judas was chosen to be one of 12 yet he did not believe. We (the Church) are chosen in Christ (His Body) because He was chosen before the foundation of the world (Ps 89:19, 1Pet 2:4). One has to be in Christ to be of this election. Paul tells the Galatians that they have become known by God meaning that they were not “known” by God before they were in Christ (Gal 4:9). Faith is a prerequisite to be in Christ. He does the justifying He controls the rheostat on revelation but it is man’s responsibility to respond. God will harden hearts that are unreceptive to His revelation. He will also give more light to those who have positive volition to His light as Cornelius did in Acts 10. Cornelius was not regenerated until he believed yet of his own volition he was a “devout man” who “prayed to God always”. Peter was summoned to share the Gospel with Cornelius and he believed and then he was saved, placed in Christ, given the Spirit of adoption and predestined to the adoption of sons i.e. the redemption of his body.

    • Q August 7, 2017 at 5:18 pm #

      Well said rascott247.

      • rascott247 August 8, 2017 at 6:45 pm #

        Q

        TULIP tinted glasses will make one read Acts 13:48 as “Now when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and glorified the word of the Lord. And as many as had been appointed (by God before the foundation of the world) to eternal life believed.”— They add what’s in parentheses because they have a preconditioned response to the word “ordained”. Their creeds use that word numerous of times.

        The Greek word in Acts 13:48 is g5021. τάσσω tassō meaning to place in a certain order, to arrange, to assign a place, to appoint on one’s own responsibility, to mutually agree upon. Now did those unregenerate Gentiles in Acts 13:42 of their own volition beg Paul to give them the same message the following Sabbath? Or were they regenerated or partly regenerated first in order to desire that the message be given again? Did the opposing Jews (v45, 46) of their own volition reject the same message (the exact same light from God’s word) or did God decree in eternity past that these individuals not believe?

        John 6:44 is often cited while looking past John 12:32 until it is pointed out. They then make “all” to mean “all elect” as if all elect were not being drawn before the cross. They cite John 1:12-13 which is speaking of the new spiritual birth apart from the physical birth i.e. physical descent and they use it to teach regeneration precedes faith. Again in 2Thess 2:13 “beginning” is turned to “before the foundation of the world” and “salvation” is made to mean salvation from Hell while the context is clearly speaking of salvation from the wrath of the Tribulation. Rev 13:8 which states that the Lamb was slain from the foundation of the world is changed to “names of the redeemed written in the Book of Life before the foundation of the world”. Some translations (new ones) even switch the word “from” to “before” and switch the word order to make it modify “written” instead of “slain”. If 2Peter 3:9 is appealed to they will correctly point out that in context believers are being addressed yet in Acts 17:30 unbelievers are told that God commands all men everywhere to repent. Of course in their paradigm “all men everywhere” means the elect only because without volition it is impossible for man to repent.

        Now many are very pious about scolding others who dare not hold to the dogmas written in manmade creeds. They employee all kinds of logical fallacies and this from a system touted as being so logical. One problem is that the system’s logic makes many things binary that are not. The car is not yellow so they say it must be green. You are not a Calvinist you must be an Arminian. You think people believe after hearing and being persuade of the truth of the Gospel that means you believe that you saved yourself—gave yourself the gift of life. You believe man has volition you must not believe God is sovereign.

  21. Darrel August 7, 2017 at 6:05 am #

    rascott,

    Thanks for giving us the damnable heresy of salvation by man in a not so small nut shell.
    It would be lovely if you would read the Word of God and comprehend it, but the words you just typed scream that you do not.
    Rev. 13:8; names of the redeemed written in the Book od Life BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD
    John 1:12 &13; no man is born again by an act of his will
    Acts 13:48 “as many as were APPOINTED to eternal life believed” No more, no less.
    John 15:10; “You did not choose Me , BUT I CHOSE YOU…” will you call Jesus a liar by saying that man’s ‘choice’ trumps God’s Sovereign choice?
    Eph. 1:4 &5 you conveniently left out the facts of these verses in order to promote your doctrine from hell. “…He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world…having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, ACCORDING TO THE GOOD PLEASURE OF HIS WILL” not man’s will, rascott’s will, but HIS will alone.
    Couple these verses with a few hundred more like the entire chapters of John 6 and 8; Romans 9 especially Rom. 9:11-13.
    John 12:37-40. See verse 39: “Therefore they COULD NOT BELIEVE…” and verse 40 “He has blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts…”
    May the Lord be pleased to open your blind eyes.

    • lyn August 7, 2017 at 9:35 am #

      Acts 13:48 “as many as were APPOINTED to eternal life believed” This verse alone should cause the free willer to cry out for mercy and forgiveness over their erroneous theology. Who appoints sinners to eternal life? God. Based on what? “For by GRACE are you saved..” It never states ‘grace and your free will’. I pointed out Jeremiah 17:9, where God shows us what the inner man is, crooked, polluted, deceitful, full of trickery, incurable sick. Yet, we are to believe that somehow, out of that mess, the ‘free will’ of man can discern spiritual things? This is why God told the very religious Nicodemus ‘you must be born again’. How many ‘religious’ folk will be in hell because they were never born from above by God the Spirit?!
      It is the merciful grace of a merciful God that appoints some to life eternal, leaving others in their sins. Oh that is harsh!! No, that is the sovereign God doing as He pleases. The fact that He would save ANY is beyond comprehension.

      Praise the Almighty, Sovereign, Supreme, Thrice-Holy God of ALL creation for having mercy and saving His elect!!! Let Him receive all praise and glory, let the elect sing hallelujah!
      “Not UNTO US, O LORD, not Unto Us, but UNTO THY NAME give glory, for Thy mercy, and for Thy truth’s sake!” [Psalm 115:1] Amen and Amen!!!

      • Q August 7, 2017 at 8:47 pm #

        Darrel and lyn,

        Lets take a look at each of the verses you posted and see if they really teach Calvinism or what do they really say.

        I’ll do them as I have time if others are interested…

        Darrel said –
        “Rev. 13:8; names of the redeemed written in the Book od Life BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD”

        Rev 13:8 – BEFORE or FROM

        How do you get before from the Greek word ‘apo’ meaning from or since?

        “And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from (apo) the foundation of the world.” NASB

        “And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from (apo) the foundation of the world.” KJV

        And why does the Calvinistic ESV erroneously translate ‘apo’ in Revelation 13:8 as “before” the foundation of the world, instead of “from” the foundation of the world and correctly translate it in Revelation 17:8 as “from” the foundation of the world?

        Rev 17:8 “The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from (apo) the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.” ESV

        So actually this verse in the original said “from” (meaning since) the creation of the world and not “before” the creation of the world.

        • lyn August 8, 2017 at 12:16 am #

          I won’t waste time with someone who sees everything as ‘calvinism’. I will state as I previously did, I used God’s word to point to who saves. I asked who wrote those verses I gave, yet, somehow ‘Calvin’ gets credit. That is the standard answer of every arminian. They chose to ignore God’s truth to the point of giving credit to a fallible man, go figure.

          “Dirck Coornhert was a Dutch humanist who was enamored with the teachings of the
          Catholic humanist Desiderius Erasmus and a Spanish Jesuit monk named Luis de Molina.
          Coornhert disdained the Reformation teachings on the Doctrines of Grace, and sought to confront them wherever he found them. Coornhert had read with growing affections the teachings of Luis de Molina regarding Free Will and Predestination. The Jesuits had
          hit on a brilliant way of dismantling the debate. They would preach that BOTH free will and predestination were true and that a good God who was truly sovereign surely might have given his creations a freedom of the will in order to allow them to choose to be saved. Luis de Molina was creating a doctrine that would eventually be called Media Scientia or Middle-Knowledge. Eventually this heresy would be known as Molinism.
          In an article on Luis de Molina entitled, Contending for the Faith, Rev. Bernard Woudenberg said of the Jesuit Luis de Molina,
          Being a Romanist, he was forced to honor the theology of Thomas Aquinas with its acceptance of divine sovereignty, but at the same time, as a Jesuit, he was committed to defending the papacy against the growing influences of Calvinism. And so de Molina set forth to steer between these by proposing his original and highly influential concept of the media scientia, or “middleknowledge.”
          In this he proposed that between God’s knowledge of the cause and effect relations which He had implanted in the universe, and that of divine freedom whereby He remains free at any time to do what He wills, there is an area of middle-knowledge which God provides for man in which man is granted freedom to do whatever he chooses without outside necessity or predetermination of any kind.(emphasis added)

          In 1586, Arminius was released from Geneva, but instead of heading back to Amsterdam where he was under contract to the City to labor in order to pay back his tuition, he headed to Rome for a vacation.
          By this time, Arminius had become a private student of the writings of Luis de Molina, and in 1588, the same year in which Arminius was ordained a minister , de Molina published his treatise on the will entitled A Reconciliation of Free Choice with the Gifts of Grace, Divine Foreknowledge, Providence, Predestination and Reprobation which is commonly referred to as the Concordia
          What the Jesuits were loathe to admit, was that Molinism was nothing more than a rebirth of the ancient SemiPelagianism heresy, which contends that man cannot be saved apart from God’s grace; however, fallen man must cooperate and assent to God’s grace before he will be saved. The Jesuits recognized that the Protestants would never embrace the teachings of a Catholic Spanish monk, so they capitalized on the growing and open debates taking place within Protestantism. Molinism would be recast as Arminianism, and eventually, it would take over the ecclesiastical world.
          A famous quote from de Molina eerily foretells of the Jesuit lie that proceeds from the mouths of evangelical leaders today:
          all human beings are endowed with equal and sufficient divine grace without distinction as to their individual merits, and that salvation depends on the sinner’s willingness to receive grace. (Concordia, 1588)

          The Catholics say of Molinism:
          Molinism is an influential system within Catholic theology for reconciling human free choice with God’s grace, providence, foreknowledge and predestination.

          Originating within the Society of Jesus (The Jesuits) in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, it encountered stiff opposition from BaÒezian Thomists and from the self-styled Augustinian disciples of Michael Baius and Cornelius Jansen. – [Alfred J. Freddoso, Catholic Professor at Notre Dame.] (emphasis added)

          Just in case you think that tying Arminius to the Jesuits is a concoction contrived by militant Calvinists, letís consult the Jesuits on the matter. The following quote
          came from a Jesuit, written in 1628 to the Jesuit Rector at Bruxels, to calm his nerves about an ensuing parliamentary call. The Jesuit writer tells the Rector that he has nothing to worry about, because the Jesuits have planted the seed arminianisme and it will certainly come to fruition:
          “March, 1628. Father Rector, let not the damp of astonishment seize upon your ardent and zealous soul, in apprehending the sodaine (sudden) and unexpected calling of a Parliament. We have now many strings to our bow. We have planted that soveraigne drugge Arminianisme, which we hope will purge the Protestants from their heresie; and
          it flourisheth and beares fruit in due season. For the better prevention of the Puritanes, the Arminians have already locked up the Duke’s (of Buckingham) eares; and we have those of our owne religion, which stand continually at the Duke’s chamber, to see who goes in and out: we cannot be too circumspect and carefull in this regard. I am, at this time, transported with joy, to see how happily all instruments and means, as well great as lesser, co-operate unto our purposes. But, to return unto the maine fabricke:–OUR
          FOUNDATION IS ARMINIANISME” [Hidden works of darkness, p. 89, 90. Edit. 1645.]
          (emphasis added) from
          https://elijah1757.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/swarms_of_locusts.pdf

          “In the year 1563 by the order of the Pope, there was a council held at Trent. And Rome then and there defined her theological position on the points that had been made by the Reformers, and one of their decrees read thus [now the decrees of the Council of Trent are their standard today on controverted points], “If anyone shall affirm that since the fall of Adam man’s free will is lost, let him be accursed”. I want to read that again, what I am reading now is Roman Catholic Doctrine according to their own standards the decrees of the Council of Trent 1563, “If anyone shall affirm that since the fall of Adam man’s free will is lost, let him be accursed”. So that those who insist on man’s free will place themselves side by side with Rome on that doctrine!”- A.W. Pink, from ‘studies in the Scriptures’ April 1926

          Free will is nothing more than Roman Catholic false doctrine

          • Tatsuslava August 8, 2017 at 7:25 pm #

            You are citing a conspiracy book to defend your conspiracy nice! Also most Pentecostals and Independent Baptists are very anti Catholic but in your mind they would be “pelgians” i guess the Jesuit plot didn’t work!

          • berlorac August 8, 2017 at 7:56 pm #

            Does anybody know of any Pentecostals who are anti-Catholic?? I suppose there may be a few, but I used to be Pentecostal and there was never any anti-Catholic sentiment. And now look at the current state of Pentecostalism with their Azusa Street celebration last year linking up with Catholics. That’s just one of many examples.

            Tatsuslava, if all you can do is write attacks about everyone and everything here, what’s the point? You don’t use Scripture to teach or exhort. All you do is attack. You come to a site that you see as “Calvinist” just so you can hurl barbs? With all of the Christians out there who need help to understand the Word of God better, and with all the lost people who need to hear the Gospel that Christ died for sins and conquered death, you’d think you’d have some important point to make here.

      • Tatsuslava August 8, 2017 at 7:37 pm #

        In your mind it’s God that caused the problem in the first place and then “leaves them in sin ” can’t have your cake and eat it too

  22. lyn August 7, 2017 at 9:11 am #

    Enough scripture has been provided to show God is the one who saves sinners, not ‘free will’. There is a reason Christ told Nicodemus ‘unless you are born again, you cannot ‘see’ the kingdom of God’. You cannot comprehend/understand truth without the work of the Spirit within. You will never comprehend truth on your own, or by ‘free will’. It is an affront to a holy, sovereign God to claim any vile, depraved sinner has a hand in saving himself. I often wonder why no free will thinker can answer this, if God gave man ‘free will’ to be saved or not be saved, who in their right mind would choose eternal wrath and damnation over life?After all, if one says they do not ‘accept Jesus’ or choose Him, the logical end of free will is ‘I’d rather die and face wrath than bow my knee to Christ’. Sadly, many who have ‘free will’ and state they believe still have not bowed the knee, for they usurp God’s might and claim they can believe IF they choose to….
    If the foundations are not right, everything built on that will eventually crumble.

  23. Edna Davidsen August 7, 2017 at 1:44 pm #

    Hi Marsha

    Thank you for sharing The ‘Prophets’ and ‘Apostles’ Leading the Quiet Revolution in American Religion.

    Quite an interesting read.

    This is the first time I hear about “Network Christianity.”

    It’s difficult for me to understand that members of this cult believe that God is behind them and He is the one appointing people to high-level positions.

    When I read about this, my first reaction was that I got a bit scared. For some reason, I dislike when faith and government get mixed like it’s described in your thoughtful post.

    By the way, thank you for the White Paper on this issue. It’s helpful because it provides us with some quick facts about what this cult stands for.

    What I find is very interesting with this topic is that so many people are drawn into cults like this. To me, it’s a sign of a hunger for a more purposeful life.

    As you point out in the post. The real power of these people lays in the capability to sell faith. That’s scary because they put so much focus on the individual.

    My impression is the opposite. The real strength of Christianity should be found in the fact that it’s practised in a community where we lift each other.

    Once again, thank you for sharing this post with us.

    Respectfully,
    Edna Davidsen

  24. G J August 7, 2017 at 3:23 pm #

    The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9; John 3:16; 1 Timothy 2:3-4; Ezekiel 33:11; John 6:40

    Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? Romans 2:4; John 6:44

    I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: Deuteronomy 30:19-20

    • lyn August 8, 2017 at 9:42 am #

      Briefly, concerning 2 Peter 3:9, who was Peter addressing? Was it believers or unbelievers? ” but is longsuffering to us-ward” – Peter is speaking of BELIEVERS, God is not willing that any believer should perish, and they won’t They will come to repentance, in God’s timing. Cherry picking verses to fit a theology is not wise at all, it’s called ‘eisegesis’, and the bible forbids adding to or taking from His word.

      As for John 3:16, ‘whosoever’ does not mean free will. There is no Greek equivalent for the English word “whosoever.”

      The Apostle John did not write, “Whosoever believeth.” That word construction was never part of his original letter. What he did write was, “pas ho pisteuoon.” The two little Greek words “pas ho” are literally translated “all the.” “Pisteuoon” is a form of the word “pisteuo,” the verb form of “pistis,” or “faith.”

      The King James translators’ choice of the single word “whosoever” to translate the two-word phrase “pas ho” was not an entirely errant decision. In the King’s English, “whosoever” did not have the connotation of randomness or free choice that it has come to represent in contemporary English. Originally, “whosoever” designated a particular group – as in “whosoever possesses these certain qualities.” In this case, the group included only those who believed, as opposed to those who did not.

      But, more to the point, “pas ho” simply does not mean “anyone at all who chooses to exercise their choice.” It specifically means “all the” and it serves to designate a particular group of people who share a defining characteristic -“faith” or “believing.”

      So, when we read, “whosoever believeth,” we must understand that what John literally wrote was “all the believing.” In other words, the benefits of God’s love are not indiscriminately available to anyone who chooses to possess them. Only the particular group – “all the believing” – are gifted with eternal life. – http://salvationbygrace.org/current-qa/about-john-316/

  25. Darrel August 7, 2017 at 4:35 pm #

    Let’s assume from what you wrote above, GJ, that you are a dyed in the wool Arminian/free will proponent. Only one question for you and those so disposed to believe the same:

    If you really believe what you preach about a man making his free will choice in order to get to God and thereby be saved, how can you justify sleep? or taking time to eat? or family? or job? or any other human activity that does not allow you to spend 110% of your energy, time, and resources to convince the lost that it is their choice to pick God that will assure them a ‘heavenly eternity.’ Seems as though there is great hypocrisy in the Arminian/ free will camp and yet they demand that their will be exalted above the pleasure of the Almighty God. What gall! What blaspheme! What a pack of lies spread by liars.

    • Tatsuslava August 8, 2017 at 7:21 pm #

      He is suggesting here that preaching is not necessary another sign of hyper Calvinism

  26. G J August 7, 2017 at 6:58 pm #

    3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; 4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:3-4

    13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

    8 And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein.

    27 Esaias also crieth concerning Israel, Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved: Matthew 7:13-15; Zechariah 13:7-9; Zephaniah 3:13-17; Romans 9: 24-29

    15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. Mark 16:14-16

    the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not… Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you… John 1:4-5; 3:19-20; 1 John 3:12-13; Ephesians 5:15-16

    11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. Isaiah 55:11

    And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and
    understanding. And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in
    those days, saith the LORD, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the LORD: neither
    shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that
    be done any more. At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the
    nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk
    any more after the imagination of their evil heart… Thou shalt call me, My father; and shalt not
    turn away from me (Jeremiah 3:15-17,19)…

  27. Darrel August 8, 2017 at 7:22 am #

    Lyn, what a great read you posted this morning! The particular roots of the free will heresy exposed! The Jesuits, the military arm of the pope. No wonder the proponents of free will verge on being rabid in defense of their pope.

    Welcome home!! all you free willers, make yourself comfortable as you await your final judgment. Did you seriously think that the Father does not see how you mock Him, His Son, His Spirit, and His Word? Of course you didn’t, blind men cannot see.

    So welcome home Q, GJ, and all the others who try to shove their lies down the throats of believers and convince them that the God that saved them is not who He says He is. Welcome home indeed! Welcome to Rome, your pope, and the great cloud of heretics that preceded you, those you now present to the Body of Christ as the champions of your (fantasy) “truth”.

  28. Darrel August 8, 2017 at 8:11 am #

    Perhaps the reason why so many ‘Arminian/free will’ people have latched on to the label “Calvinist” is in order to make it more palatable for them to call out who they deem to be a liar. Calvin becomes the surrogate for God, as they call Calvin a liar when they really mean that God is the liar. They cannot fathom the fact that their “cooperation” or “consent” is not just useless, but rather is an insult to the God they claim to know. Praise for the Lord Jesus is virtually nonexistent in the A/FW camp; their time is consumed hawking their heretical foolishness and fantasy god. They may be fluent in Christianese, have vast knowledge of the Bible, and taut degrees of “higher learning” but the reality is that they are blind. Their time is spent teaching others about their god who has ceded his sovereignty to the whim and will of a pile of dust. Any humility that the world can see is of the false variety, behind which is the ego-laden agenda of man’s will: “Which things have indeed a show of wisdom in WILL WORSHIP and humility…” Col. 2:23 KJV (don’t waste your time on the other mis-translations that record this verse otherwise). A/FWs worship their own will, not their Sovereign Creator. Their bluster to the contrary only cements their rebellion and eternal damnation.

    • Tatsuslava August 8, 2017 at 7:19 pm #

      Alright we got a hyper Calvinist here! He believes only Calvinists go to heaven

  29. G J August 8, 2017 at 9:23 am #

    …Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat…

    And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever Genesis 3:11-13, 22

    I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. Revelation 3:18

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

    I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah…

    And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree… Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be grafted in…

    Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear: For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee. Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off. Hebrews 8:8; Jeremiah 31:31; Romans 11:16-24

    And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. Revelation 21:1-4,9-10,22-26; 22:3,5; Isaiah 25:6-8

    Proverbs 15:18;16:32; James 1:18-20; Psalm 86:15; Numbers 14:18

  30. G J August 8, 2017 at 1:41 pm #

    Who will have {all men to be saved}, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:3-4

    Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord God, {I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live}: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; {for why will ye die, O house of Israel}? Ezekiel 33:11

    For I am the Lord, I change not… the word of our God shall stand for ever… the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning… Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away… Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. Malachi 3:6; Isaiah 40:8; James 1:17-18; Luke 21:32-34; Hebrews 13:7-9

    and now, lest he put forth his hand, and {take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever} Genesis 3:11-13, 22

    And by the river upon the bank thereof, on this side and on that side, shall grow all trees for meat, whose leaf shall not fade, neither shall the fruit thereof be consumed:{it shall bring forth new fruit according to his months}, because {their waters they issued out of the sanctuary: and the fruit thereof shall be for meat, and the leaf thereof for medicine}. Ezekiel 47:12

    And he shewed me {a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb}. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there {the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month}: and {the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations}.

    And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And {whosoever will}, let him {take the water of life freely}. Revelation 22

    And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall {all nations be blessed}. Galatians 3:8

    And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and {all nations shall flow unto it}. Isaiah 2:2

    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And {the earth was without form, and void}… And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light… (Genesis 1:1-3).

    I beheld {the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light}… For thus says the Lord, “The whole land shall be a desolation, Yet {I will not execute a complete destruction} (NASB) Jeremiah 4:23-31…

    For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but {for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened} Matthew 24:21-22…

    But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and {the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up Peter 3:10-11

    Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen… But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him… For he [Abraham] looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God… Hebrews 11

    And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God (James 2:22-24).

    …he that putteth his trust in me shall possess the land, and shall inherit my holy mountain Isaiah 57:13

    Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is. For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters… Jeremiah 17:7-8

    Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. {For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little: For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people}. To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear. But {the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little}; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken. Wherefore hear the word of the LORD, ye scornful men, that rule this people which is in Jerusalem. Isaiah 28:9-14

    {Who hath ears to hear, let him hear}. And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He answered and said unto them, Because {it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven}, but to them it is not given. {For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath}. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And (in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive}: Matthew 13:9-14; Mark 4:23-25

  31. Jaeson August 11, 2017 at 9:10 am #

    All I know is that the “Church Inc” and “NAR” & “Latter Rain” are heretical. Many people fall into these teachings because they genuinely think experiences validate scripture. Instead it should be the other way around. The problem is, the Biblically illiterate (and often times historically illiterate) latch onto these teachings thinking they are something new. They give people a false hope that they will be super special in God’s eyes, that they can have the power of Christ Himself, & in some case also will be rich. My family attended Che Ahn’s H Rock Church for over a decade, and I went with them. At first what he taught did not seem that far off from the non-denominational church I had previously attended. It was just here and there he’d say things that were odd, “7 Mountain Mandate” or “spiritual warfare” were not talked about all the time, just off and on, so it would slowly seep into a person’s way of thinking. The church become more entrenched in talking about it all the time when IHOP got bigger, Bethel became their “sister church.” At that point every service had to do (when Che was actually pastoring and in-town) with some future revival and Che’s dream about a black man (I’m not making this up). Che then said he was an apostle, so that is why he wasn’t around all the time as pastor (?). When he was around (usually in Feb/March right before taxes are due) he’d give a 1 month long sermon about how he needed money for the new building and how they were in debt…but it was always under the guise of – if you give a lot to God you will get a reward! He then would talk about how an owner of a large shipping company gave him $1,000,000 worth of shares, and then discuss shopping at Nordstroms. He also would name drop that he met Beyonce and prayed with her–although in my head I’m thinking- yeah and she’s still pushing trashy sexed-up music…..or how Justin Beiber’s mom went to our church (un verifiable). The whos-who of the NAR would show up- Chuck Pierce, C Peter Wagner (his message made no sense and was super odd), Heidi Baker (who didn’t preach she just sang and then rolled about on the floor), and others who only “preached” experiences. Their personal experiences and revelation from their “god.” I’d really have to say that I think a lot of the church was under some sort of demonic spell. There was no sound doctrine being taught. I think in the 10 years I attended only once did they have a sermon about hell (and that pastor is gone). I was given many false prophecies by these people…. many many that caused a lot of hurt. They always promised great things which never happened. Then if they don’t happen they blame you saying “you didn’t pray over it enough!” Sorry but that never happened in the Bible. It always happened there if someone was really hearing from God. The last straw was when a demon-possessed lady tried to pray over me and I could feel some gross “thing” (I’ll call it) trying to get on me from her. I remembered the verse that says “do not hastily lay hands on anyone, lest you partake of their sin.” I had to push this person away even after repeatedly asking them to NOT touch me. I left this movement. After I left it was like a cloud that was on me came off and I could see it for what it really was- something very evil that is leading young men and women astray, and the old as well into a place where all they want is experiences instead of repentance and true humility. Their doctrines are false and dangerous, but do not appear so at first. They appeal to your pride and willingness to do good even, yet the root of it is evil. I think much of what goes on is demonic. While they wage “spiritual warfare” (supposedly) they are the ones who are actually under the influence. They constantly claim to speak for God (no small matter), as if He is a faucet. There is no respect for God, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit. They even started to drop “the” from Holy Spirit. They say ‘holy spirit’ like He is a genie in a bottle you can conjure to do your bidding. NO NO NO.

    If you are part of this movement the truth is:
    1 ) God determines what spiritual gifts a person has, they cannot be “activated” or “received” by someone praying for you. EVER! Please READ YOUR BIBLE PLEASE!!!!!! IN CONTEXT!

    2) Christ says things will get worse and worse, not better and better. There is no end time harvest. This verse was taken grossly out of context.

    3) Joel’s army is always spoken about in negative terms. Please re-read the whole book of Joel.

    4) Research the Latter Rain and William Branham and how off they were doctrinally. Branaham could only “do thing” when his “angel emma showed up.” This is the same one Todd Bently says he summons (i.e. a demon).

    5) They are all linked together and mutually affirm one another- dont trust your pastor, trust God! Che, Bickle, Wimber, Houston, Johnson, Joyner, White, etc. They deceive you into think the other is ok when they are not.

    6) Read your Bible!!! That is what ultimately saved me out of this movement because it was telling me just the opposite from what I read.

    7) Experiences are not fruit, nor are “half healings.”

    8) Inner healing is demonic.. no really. It is regressive therapy and has nothing to do with Christ. Do some research on it.

    • Manny1962 August 11, 2017 at 10:39 am #

      Jason,

      Thank you so much for posting this! I found it refreshing, honest and disturbing all at the same time. Here we have a succint statement from someone who saw firsthand how depraved this movent is. I call it a movement as some branches are named differently, but they all do the same, preach a different gospel, practice the occult, twist scripture, cavort with demons and are experts at fleecing their followers. Unless God moves in the heart of a person caught in this web I don’t see how it’s possible to escape.

    • Darrel August 11, 2017 at 11:13 am #

      I am so happy for you that God delivered you from this hell hole that calls itself a “church”. Thank you for speaking out and for crediting the Lord for your exit from these people/demons.

    • lyn August 11, 2017 at 11:34 am #

      Jason,

      Praise the Lord He has shown you the evil of this ‘religion’. You make many valid points in your comment, like “Please READ YOUR BIBLE PLEASE!!!!!! IN CONTEXT!” I can only add ‘amen and amen’ brother! Many, many ‘Christians read their bibles with closed minds, pre-conceived views and use the cherry picking method. Pulling verses out of context is wildly popular, and it leads to all kinds of unbiblical views. Good point.

      You also said “Christ says things will get worse and worse, not better and better. There is no end time harvest” Yes, all one has to do is look around them! Things are getting drastically worse at warp speed. Another good point.

      “dont trust your pastor, trust God! ” THAT is a very key statement, too many believe and swallow whatever their church or denomination teaches, which is how false teachings get so deeply embedded. Thank you for pointing that out.

      ALL of your points are spot on and relevant with this present time. Thank you for taking time to share the wisdom God has imparted to you, to Him be all glory!

    • berlorac August 11, 2017 at 8:50 pm #

      Jaeson, thanks for posting this. Praise God that you saw the truth! I can identify with some of what you said. I was in it for a short time from 1999-2003, before it got really bad. They were just starting to bring in the Elijah List junk when I left. It is tragic to watch so many people get sucked into this demonic activity.

  32. Matthew Perri August 20, 2017 at 6:03 pm #

    There are only 12 Apostles, and the 12th is Matthias.

    Paul the Pharisee was never appointed an apostle or recognized individually as “an apostle” any anyone in the pages of the Bible – except himself. (Not even Luke said that – no he didn’t, not in Acts 14 or anywhere else…..)

    The NAR false teachers bring the false message of Paul the false apostle, and follow the bad carnal example of Paul.

    What we should be hearing is….
    The teachings OF Jesus –

    The message of The 11 (“The narrow gate”)

    “The eleven disciples went to Galilee”
    “Where Jesus had told them to go”
    They heard His voice and obeyed His will
    Despite uncertainty down below

    Jesus spoke to them at length
    He wasn’t really a Tweeter
    Only 3 of them wrote Scripture
    Matthew John and Peter

    “Feed my sheep” said Jesus, for though
    “Heaven and earth will pass away”
    I have the words of eternal life and
    “My words will never pass away”

    “Enter through the narrow gate”
    The voice of Jesus through the eleven
    Believe in Jesus “through their message”
    And “eat from the tree of life” in heaven

    Jesus commissioned the eleven
    With “everything I have commanded you”
    “Teaching THEM to obey” Jesus
    And “THEM” means me and you !

    “The command given by our Lord and Savior”
    Is not a Pharisee speaking alone
    It came rather “through your apostles”
    Matthew Peter and John

    If a Pharisee boasts proudly
    Those men added nothing to my message
    He doesn’t speak for Jesus
    His words are nothing more than garbage

    Bibliography
    All “quotes” in “quotation marks” are from the writings of the Apostles Matthew John and Peter in the Bible, mostly the “Red Letter” words of Jesus. [Matthew, John, Revelation, 2 Peter – NIV]

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