Steven Furtick: Unqualified, Not Unworthy

Cameron Buettel of Grace to You reviews megachurch pastor Steven Furtick’s latest book that he wrote to defend his qualifications as a pastor.  However, Buettel reveals that the criterion for “overseers” detailed in 1 Timothy 3:1–7 and Titus 1:5–9 are not mentioned in the book!

As we pointed out in Why Won’t Steven Furtick Answer Tough Questions About His Ministry?, Furtick is “one of the high-profile pastors that the late Ken Silva of Apprising Ministries dubbed: Evangelical Ecumenical Magisterium.  ‘His Furtickism is a hybrid of Seeker Driven and quasi-Word Faith mythology,’ quipped Silva.

Bottom line: Steven Furtick is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. “I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive.” (Rom 16:17 & 18)

So with this background in mind, following is Cameron Buettel’s review of Furtick’s book…

Wolf in sheeps clothing 5

 

“Unqualified.”

That was John MacArthur’s one-word assessment of Steven Furtick during a Q&A session at the 2012 Shepherds’ Conference.

It’s also the title of Furtick’s latest book. Furtick credits that brief appraisal of his ministry as the inspiration for writing this:

“Unqualified.” . . . Unqualified?

That word started the wheels spinning in my head. . . . Yes, I struggle with my temper, with my focus, with my motives, with my eating habits, with my prayer life, with my state of mind. And that list doesn’t even scratch the surface.

I know my weaknesses and faults better than anyone. I don’t need to listen to an online interview to feel disqualified. Hardly a day goes by that I’m not seized by the sensation that I have no business doing what I’m doing. That I’m in over my head. That I don’t deserve any of my blessings or opportunities.

Am I unqualified? This book is the answer to that question. [1]

Furtick’s certainly asking the right question. But the answer doesn’t lie in chronicling one’s own journey of self-discovery and self-evaluation. Pastoral qualifications aren’t a mystery—they’ve been clearly and definitively spelled out in Scripture.

I was in the room during the aforementioned Q&A session. For me and the thousands of pastors, church leaders, and seminary students in attendance, John MacArthur’s answer was an obvious reference to the qualifications for “overseers” detailed in 1 Timothy 3:1–7 and Titus 1:5–9.

In those passages Paul describes the clear line of distinction between those who are qualified to be Bible teachers, and those who aren’t:

An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money. He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity . . . and not a new convert. . . . And he must have a good reputation with those outside the church. (1 Timothy 3:2–7)

A more detailed discussion of those requirements can be found here.

But such detailed analysis isn’t necessary when it comes to Unqualifed. Furtick proves MacArthur’s point by not addressing or even referring to those biblical requirements. It is frankly astounding that in a book ostensibly defending Furtick’s qualifications that Timothy and Titus are nowhere to be found!

This oversight is glaring—either Furtick doesn’t know or doesn’t care what it means to be biblically qualified.

Instead he chooses to go down the road of subjectivity: “When I started the journey that lies behind this book, I wanted to finally figure out how to respond to that question within myself” (emphasis added). [2] And true to that assertion, Furtick almost exclusively relies on his own opinions and experience to argue his case in Unqualified.

He describes a church leader as primarily “a decision maker, a risktaker [sic].” [3] But that baseless definition is as far as Furtick goes in discussing qualifications specific to church leaders. The rest of the book has a much broader application:

At one point or another, you’ve probably felt unqualified. . . . I think we all secretly fight feelings of inadequacy, insufficiency, and incompetence. We wonder whether we really measure up. We fear we are not “enough”—whatever that means in our particular situations. [4]

That quote captures Unqualified’s utter failure to answer the questions regarding Furtick’s qualification—in that sense, he sidesteps his own purpose statement.  Continue reading.  Continue reading

Related:

Steven Furtick teaches that God Breaks the Law By Tim Challies

See our White Papers on Word of Faith movement and Seeker Driven

 

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13 Responses to Steven Furtick: Unqualified, Not Unworthy

  1. Manny1962 May 24, 2016 at 12:06 pm #

    Rob Bell, Steven Furtick, Mark Driscoll, Rick Warren, Todd Bentley……the new brood of super apostates, fleecing the sheep, leading astray the undiscerning, antichristian to the core, headed for such a great condemnation if they don’t repent, return what they’ve stolen and leave the pulpit immediately. These are the faces we are seeing as the old diehard wolves get grey, old and die off. These are the latest in a long line, there are more coming, the last and greatest of these will be The False Prophet, that these men, if alive at the time, will pay homage to, agree to follow and when the man of sin appears they will worship.

    • Mark April 10, 2017 at 9:04 pm #

      You seem a bit short on names, Brother, so I’ll fill out the …………a little~!
      We also have Joel Osteen and his wife, Joyce Meyer, Heidi Baker, Beth Moore, Patricia King, Paula White(Affecting Trumps presidency with her fowl hissing’s) T.D. Jake, Creflo Dollar, everyone at Hillsong and Jesus Culture, I could go all day so I’ll do this; go to http://so4j.com and see the list, the list at Sold Out 4 Jesus, is alphabetical and they need prayer and even more importantly those they have led down a dark path~!
      Except for two or three that are dead a long time or have just died like False Prophet; Kim Clement, and False teacher; Eddie Long~! The list is for the most part complete
      – Justin Abraham
      – Enoch Adeboye
      – Che Ahn
      – John Arnott
      – Winnie Banov
      – Neil T. Anderson
      – Carol Arnott
      – John Avanzini
      – Heidi Baker
      – Georgian Banov
      – Rob Bell
      – Paul Begley
      – Todd Bentley
      – Mike Bickle
      – Reinhard Bonnke
      – Greg Boyd
      – William Branham
      – Rodney Howard Browne
      – Juanita Bynum
      – Jonathan Cahn
      – Paul Cain
      – Stacy Campbell
      – Wesley Campbell
      – Harold Camping
      – Tony Campolo
      – Charles Capps
      – Morris Cerullo
      – Mark Chironna
      – David Yonggi Cho
      – Deepak Chopra
      – Randy Clark
      – Ian Clayton
      – Kim Clement
      – Gerald Coates
      – Graham Cooke
      – Todd Coontz
      – Kenneth/Gloria Copeland
      – Paul & Jan Crouch
      – John Crowder
      – Paul Cunningham
      – Creflo/Taffy Dollar
      – John Alexander Dowie
      – Clare du Bois
      – Ezekiel du Bois
      – Jesse Duplantis
      – John Eckhardt
      – Gene Edwards
      – Lou Engle
      – Richard Foster
      – Pope Francis
      – Steven Furtick
      – W.V. Grant
      – John Hagee
      – Ted Haggard
      – Kenneth Hagin
      – Christian Harfouche
      – Bill Hamon
      – Jen Hatmaker
      – Jack Hayford
      – Ruth Heflin
      – Marilyn Hickey
      – John Hinkle
      – Benny Hinn
      – David Hogan
      – Larry Huch
      – Bill Hybels
      – Cindy & Mike Jacobs
      – T.D. Jakes
      – Leroy Jenkins
      – Bill Johnson
      – Ian Johnson
      – Bob Jones
      – Tony Jones
      – Manasseh Jordan
      – T.B. Joshua
      – Rick Joyner
      – Morton Kelsey
      – E.W. Kenyon
      – John Kilpatrick
      – Dan Kimball
      – Patricia King
      – Kathryn Kuhlman
      – Bob Larson
      – Roberts Liardon
      – Eddie Long
      – Lord Maitreya
      – Brennan Manning
      – Marjoe
      – Brian McClaren
      – Clarence McClendon
      – Aimee Semple McPherson
      – Joyce Meyer
      – Beth Moore
      – Myles Munroe
      – Steve Munsey
      – Mike Murdock
      – Andrew Murray
      – Joel Osteen
      – Doug Pagitt
      – Luis Palau
      – Rod Parsley
      – Earl Paulk
      – Norman Vincent Peale
      – Chuck Pierce
      – Peter Popoff
      – Fred Price
      – Joseph Prince
      – Phineas Quimby
      – Oral Roberts
      – Richard Roberts
      – Pat Roberson
      – James Robison
      – Sid Roth
      – Robert Schuller
      – R.W. Shambach
      – Dutch Sheets
      – Andy Stanley
      – Ruth Carter Stapleton
      – Don Stewart
      – Leonard Sweet
      – Tommy Tenney
      – Choo Thomas
      – LeRoy Thompson
      – Robert Tilton
      – Eckart Tolle
      – Kris Vallotton
      – C.Peter Wagner
      – Lance Wallnau
      – Kathie Walters
      – Rick Warren
      – Ronald Weinland
      – Jason Westerfield
      – Ellen G. White
      – Paula White
      – Todd White
      – Dallas Willard
      – John Wimber
      – Oprah Winfrey
      – Andrew Wommack
      – Ed Young Jr.
      – William P Young: The Shack
      – Sarah Young: Jesus Calling
      – Zig Ziglar

      • Manny1962 April 10, 2017 at 10:09 pm #

        Zig Ziglar! There’s one I haven’t heard of in years, had a lost friend who would always quote Zig!

      • Parker June 17, 2017 at 10:00 am #

        How is Hillsong a false teacher Mark?? Agree with everyone else on your list.

        From what I heard they still preach the gospel, forgiveness of sins thru Jesus Christ’s death alone on the cross, and that to receive eternal life is not by good works but by Faith alone.

      • Michael June 17, 2017 at 10:26 am #

        So I suppose you have met all of these people and know first hand that they are false prophets/teachers? Otherwise, your conclusions really carry no weight. At least reference where and how you came to these conclusions (for each person please). P.S: I don’t sanction any of these people, but such a list does no one any real helpful service without valid proof of your claims.

        Want to do some criticizing that takes even less work but which will make a never ending list?

        Please, make us a list of all the individuals who claim to be modern day Senior Pastors in any religious denomination. The position of Senior Pastor, like religious denominations are the inventions of men- they have ZERO scriptural warrant whatsoever. Is this not a falsehood as well. Are not all those claiming to be such not lying to “their” (a whole other problem in itself) congregations about who they claim to be? Their is no such person as a Moses in the New Covenant. All those claiming to be such are mere hirelings (that’s what Jesus Himself calls them) and are just as needy of repentance as those you list above.

        • Mark Gallagher June 17, 2017 at 7:27 pm #

          Far from it, Parker~! To begin with Brian Houston teaches Chrislam and says that we and the Muslims worship the same God~!
          I could see where Brian might be worshiping the same God because Muslims worship Satan only they don’t realize it~!
          Hillsong’s leadership is NAR~!

          I think You’ll find Laura very thorough and very sweet, of course she’s Irish, and I could listen to her all day, and she knows her stuff~!

          God Bless You and Yours every moment till HE comes~!!!
          MARANATHA~!!!

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8uLT8JdeA1M

        • Mark Gallagher June 17, 2017 at 7:55 pm #

          Michael,
          You’ll find no one to argue with, here~!

          Although I have researched everyone on the list, I did not create it~!

          I usually tell those who see a name on the list, to do their own research don’t believe me~!

          Just go to Scripture and compare what an individual teaches to what Scripture says~!

          I will provide You with proof on anyone listed~! You might need to make and informed comment, next time~!

          If You’d read my post carefully, You would’ve noticed that The website in question is Sold Out 4 Jesus,” @ http://so4j.com,

          They do provide videos and information to prove what they say and if You have problems with that, just go talk to Justin Peters @ justinpeters.org

          God Bless You and Your’s

          • Michael June 17, 2017 at 10:15 pm #

            Thanks for your cordial response Mark. I wasn’t literally asking you for anything in particular- I just don’t see how the list by itself accomplishes anything profitable or edifying whatsoever.

            Although I’m not assuming you are part of a discernment group, many of those who are come from the Reformed Camp and have never once addressed a single concern I’ve directed toward them in relation to their own numerous hypocrisies. Many of them don’t even allow for comments after they write articles. In relation to their hypocrisy, “How can one confront Steven Furtick’s qualifications as being a pastor when they themselves justify the unscriptural religious position of Senior Pastor within the body of Christ? The very fact that they allow such a falsehood to exist when it’s scripturally unfounded proves many things:

            1. These professing believers regularly justify lies. It is a lie that any religious position exists within the body of Christ (there are roles/functions to be carried out) especially ones that denote a religious hierarchy like the word Senior does. A hierarchy Jesus Himself roundly condemned.

            2. That these same people have no issue with mixing traits and practices of the Old Covenant with the New despite that being prohibited and those practices superseded by better things.

            3. That to allow such old practices to continue both stunts the growth of the saints, keeps them reliant upon human teachers and leaves them deceived as to the full nature of Jesus and His redemptive work. Do any of these so-called seniors even read the book of Hebrews?

            4. Keeping the saints in the dark purposefully is to willfully deceive them. To him who refuses to do what he knows he should, to him it is sin (paraphrase of course but you get it) When someone continues to teach what is contrary to scripture willfully, that is synonymous with suppressing the truth with unrighteousness.

            5. With all these peoples so called education (which alone is worthless) they have no excuse for not telling people the truth about many of the present poor or completely mistranslated Bible words. They can start with “ekklesia” which completely crushes any special significance of a building called a church.

            6. Let’s be honest. These Senior Pastors in institutions have never even begun to count the cost of being a disciple. They do not and will not lose their lives as Jesus Christ commands them to do- and yet people follow them, hilarious.

            Feel free to offer your own explanation for Senior Pastors if you are so inclined Mark.

            I may check out the site above…….but I’ll probably just draw more contempt from people who only claim to follow the Bible but in reality really don’t. We’ll see.

  2. among the forgotten May 25, 2016 at 5:40 pm #

    Of the various church leaders who continually promote the concept on earthly physical organization called “church,” none of them have ever come forward and justified their reasons for doing so. Where in the New Testament does Jesus promote or endorse an earthly sectarian organization ruled by a religious salaried hierarchy?

    Such concepts are altogether unscriptural- unless of course one desires to return to the lesser things of the old covenant instead of standing upon the “all new things” in Jesus.

    Those who promote such former things are no more qualified than Steven Furtick himself and likely even less so. Lies are lies regardless of who tells or promotes them. The greater condemnation lies with those who know the truth and purposefully keep those truths from people in need.

    A word to those thinking themselves wise (professional ministers): He who desires to keep his life (his reputation, his ministry, what he has made with his own hands through institutionalism) will lose his life, but he who relinquishes these things for My sake (Jesus says) will save their lives. Was Jesus joking?

    Professional ministers are hypocrites of the highest order, condemning others while they themselves refuse to carry their cross while ruling over and usurping the place of Christ in His people.

    Still waiting for even one of the above to explain a justified return to the old covenant practices mentioned above- all of which have been plainly superseded in Christ.

  3. Mark April 10, 2017 at 8:38 pm #

    I know it says do not hate Your enemy but the FOWL BLASPHEMIES that come out of that mans mouth are beyond what a man of God can endure~!!! This is what carrying the name of The Lord God name in Vain, is all about~!!! He insults Yahuwah’s name every time he opens his mouth~!!!!!!!

  4. Olumide May 25, 2017 at 5:31 pm #

    I feel that criticizing all the pastors in your country or continent does not solve any problem…and do not deceive yourselves. You are not passing any message with all these.
    Catch the revelation, preach the gospel, seek God diligently and leave out human theology. Whoever is working against the faith has God to answer to. Not you or any other person. You want to criticize Pastors for living big? I bet if you come to Nigeria, you will make more money doing this new critique business than you have ever made.
    Pray for revelation, seek God’s face and ask your spirit. Am I really doing what God would have me do in this time and season? If Christians do not go to churches where they are fed because of your publications? Can they at least come to you instead? Will they be fed with the only valid doctrine in the world? The doctrine of our Faith which comes through revelation by hearing, and hearing the word of God?
    Friends and Writers, work this out with fear and trembling.

    • Manny1962 May 25, 2017 at 10:27 pm #

      Good evening Olumide, I hope this explains what a BEREAN is to do:

      “I feel that criticizing all the pastors in your country or continent does not solve any problem…and do not deceive yourselves. You are not passing any message with all these”

      It’s not criticizing ALL pastors, just the ones who are teaching unscriptural, false gospel. We are commanded to do this in the Bible, the deceived ones are those that promulgate false teaching and deceive this sheep that are not reading their bibles.

      “Whoever is working against the faith has God to answer to. Not you or any other person. You want to criticize Pastors for living big? I bet if you come to Nigeria, you will make more money doing this new critique business than you have ever made.”

      The Bible makes it perfectly clear we have to call out errors and heresy, it also makes it quite clear to shun those that do such things. We as Christians judge those that say they follow Christ, we are NOT to judge the world, the world is not the bride of Christ. If you mean by living big, private jets, huge mansions, staff that rivals a corporate business, lavish parties, fleecing the gullible of their money by promising health and wealth, promising things that Jesus did not? Critique “business” does not make money, on the contrary those that support the false pastors turn on you and try and defame you, usually it begins with the phrase “don’t touch God’s anointed.”

      “If Christians do not go to churches where they are fed because of your publications? Can they at least come to you instead? Will they be fed with the only valid doctrine in the world? The doctrine of our Faith which comes through revelation by hearing, and hearing the word of God?
      Friends and Writers, work this out with fear and trembling.”

      In these days we live in, surely foretold millennia ago, “church” might be more dangerous to your soul than you might think. Being exposed to those teachers that are spreading false teaching is dangerous and toxic, you are warned to stay away from those who would deceive you and wreck your faith. Faith comes from hearing the unvarnished word of God, called The Truth, the holy bible is the litmus test for every teaching or doctrine, if the pastor behind the pulpit isn’t teaching what is in scripture, if he deviates from it, if he preaches another Jesus or gospel, he is false, and you are to shun him!

    • Manny1962 May 25, 2017 at 10:31 pm #

      The list posted by Mark is a good starting point. Those on the list preach a different gospel and a different Jesus.

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