Beth Moore’s Legalism: A Discernment Lesson applicable to any teacher

Elizabeth Prata of The End Time reminds us that popular Bible study teacher, author, and speaker Beth Moore’s theology is off the rails. (Prata has a page on her blog that contains past critiques of Mrs. Moore’s teaching.)  In this piece she addresses Moore’s legalism and admonishes us not to listen to Moore “or any teacher who imposes conditions on your walk that are absent from the Bible. Or who uses absolute words like unless, can’t, always, never, all the time, and so on.”  In this “refresher course” Elizabeth Prata once again takes on Beth Moore:

 

I have written about Beth Moore’s legalism in the past (2011). It’s hard to believe that was 7 years ago. Here is a refresher course on how, while seeming to speak a Gospel-infused sermon, Beth Moore’s speeches are really just a try harder legalism. This is a lesson in discernment.

You have to listen carefully and do a lot of note-taking because Moore speaks so fast, or if you listen online, use the pause button a lot. Her ‘try harder’ theology is also in her books as you will see, so the issue is not just her speaking style, but her theology. You will hear that Beth Moore shapes the scriptures away from pure faith and toward legalism. She splits sentences, putting a crowbar between words and inserting things you’ve ‘got’ to do. There is a lot of ‘do this or else’. There are also lots of warnings about the dire conditions of our walk, without real explanations. Like this from a few days ago.

 

It seems she is trying to say that we shouldn’t be too busy. Too busy for what, Moore never says. Yet after more than three successive tweets (yes, it went on) she never got to any clear point. Milk meaning from graffiti? Huffing and puffing? And what does it mean, exactly, that we are ‘blowing our houses down’? A teacher is supposed to be “able to teach.” (2 Timothy 2:24). Not vaguely warn. Or be so in love with her writing that plain meaning is obscured…

Our precious Lord gave salvation as a gift. No matter how we stumble, or no matter how many times we enter a sin-repent-forgive cycle, we are saved and effective for His glory. He gave us a GIFT of salvation. It is the gift of redemption, a gift of imputed righteousness. Here are some examples of how Moore diminishes the gift of the Gospel and makes it a confusing, burdensome, treacherous walk among the heavy stones of the Law.

Example #1:

 Her contemplative prayer quote: “[I]f we are not still before Him, we will never truly know to the depths of the marrow of our bones that He is God. There’s got to be a stillness.”

According to Moore, we will “never” “truly” know who God is UNLESS we are still. Beware of Bible teachers who frequently use absolute words.

Example #2:

In one study, Beth Moore is speaking of ‘confidence and competence’ that Christ gives us. The study is based on Hebrews 10:19-20 but her interpretation of the verse is wrong from the beginning. Once the basic interpretation is wrong it is no surprise that what follows falls into even worse error. Watch carefully as she inserts conditions to salvation. She even outlines the effect of not believing the new add-ons that she includes.

 …but what can happen is this … If we receive Christ as our Savior but we never recognize and by faith believe Him to also be our healer and our restorer then we just stay just as cracked as when we got here.

The Gospel is now Law. According to Moore, we have to believe some things above and beyond what the Bible says we need to believe for salvation. According to Moore, we must believe in a different Christ than the Jesus presented in His Word. I certainly don’t see anything in His word about having to believe that Jesus is our Savior AND our Healer AND our Restorer or else we stay “cracked”. And what does cracked mean, exactly? This is some vague warning of looming disaster, the kind of warnings Moore loves to issue.

Now as for this cracked business, the Bible does speak of being cracked:

For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, The fountain of living waters, To hew for themselves cisterns, Broken cisterns That can hold no water. (Jeremiah 2:13).

The cracked ones were the ones who forsook God. They were the evil ones.

But when Jesus saves us, we are sealed!

Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee. (2 Corinthians 1:21-22).

There is no in-between in the New Testament, being saved but leaking through a crack. Continue reading

SEE OUR WHITE PAPER ON DISCERNMENT

, , , , , ,