Leaving the NAR Church: Candice’s story

“How lonely and devastating it is to find out that something you believe in so strongly can be so wrong, and that cognitive dissonance disorder is very real to all of us who share this journey.”

Candice is one of many Christians who has watched helplessly as the New Apostolic Reformation infected the church and the friends she loved.  She has allowed me to include her story in this series about a movement called the New Apostolic Reformation, or NAR for short. In this series, I want to take readers beyond the textbook What is the New Apostolic Reformation Movement explanation, into the personal experiences from those who have been there, and what happened when God opened their eyes to the truth.

Here is Candice’s account in her own words:

I am thankful to everyone who shared their stories, as it helped remind me why we left the church that we attended for over 10 years.

A few years ago, my husband and I started to notice  changes in the elders, worship leaders, and others,  who were spending time at IHOP and Bill Johnson’s, Bethel Church in Redding, California. We noticed major changes in the music, and started sensing an elitist demeanor of so many who were getting into Jesus Culture and IHOP music.

As a nurse, I was noticing a lot of New Age influences in the Heath Care Industry and stumbled upon Marcia Montenegro’s Christian Answers for the New Age. Reading her articles made me aware of the heretical teachings I was seeing of IHOP, Bill Johnson and the NAR movement. As the bells started going off, I plunged into researching everything I could on the NAR and realized this was happening at our church, too.

We had a few meetings with the Pastor and shared our concerns, but the elders refuted all the evidence and information we provided. We started to feel like strangers at this church, and eventually left. The grief we experience from leaving was heartbreaking, as we called this Church, home and the members, family.

After reading many articles from Christian discernment ministries and getting back to the basics of the Bible, we are attending a conservative mainline church.  I can’t believe how nice it is to “feel safe” in church again. I guess my point in writing this was to relay how lonely and devastating it is to find out that something you believe in so strongly can be so wrong, and that cognitive dissonance disorder is very real to all of us who share this journey.

It has taken us a couple years to feel right side up again, and we are so grateful for Amy, Marcia Montenegro, Chris Rosebrough, Fighting for the Faith, and others who have put forth the facts to show us the errors that are flooding these churches.

Author’s Note:  You can read the entire series of NAR testimonies here.  If you would like to send me your story about your NAR church experience and what happened when your eyes were opened, you can email me here. I will be changing your first name to keep you anonymous.

8 Responses to Leaving the NAR Church: Candice’s story

  1. kim May 9, 2017 at 8:03 pm #

    Yes Candace

    This happened to me..it hurt bad. Messed me up bad there was a lot to my experience than yours. But I didn’t realize that what I experienced was cognitive dissonance. IM glad you found a church it has been 10 yrs and I am still churchless and dealing with the fall out. I am very re committed to Jesus but also dealing with chronic illness and living in a new place and pretty much alone..outside of Jesus and having a husband who is not so much on the emotional supportive side. Have sought for a church for 8 yrs still looking. Still dealing with doctrinal confusion on some things but God is with me.

    • Aaron September 20, 2017 at 1:30 pm #

      My advice would be to see if you can find a solid Assemblies of God, Church of God (Cleveland, Tennessee), Foursquare, or Pentecostal Church of God church which is teaching correct eschatology. If not, find a church which teaches the Word of God. There are many good Pentecostal churches out there which teach the Word of God, and reject this NAR heresy. I will eventually be leaving the church I grew up in, because the pastor doesn’t have much discernment when it comes to the Word of Faith or NAR (we do Bethel Music/Jesus Culture songs on Sunday mornings). I’m convinced my pastor is ignorant of what the NAR teaches. I have A/G churches that I know in my area which are teaching the Word of God.

      • Maggie September 20, 2017 at 2:14 pm #

        I disagree with your statement that “There are many good Pentecostal churches out there which teach the Word of God.” There are very few churches overall that teach solid doctrine. Pentecostal and non-Pentecostal churches are focused on the experiential, teaching contemplative/mystical practices. The visible church is inebriated with these practices and teachings, and it is easy for the NAR to stealthily infiltrate these church bodies and take over. Instead of the true gospel of salvation being preached in churches, it has been replaced by a gospel “of the Kingdom” which has a dominionist agenda–Christians transforming the earth into God’s Kingdom. Any pastor or church body unaware of the dangers of these popular teachings is unlikely to resist.

        • Maggie September 20, 2017 at 2:41 pm #

          I sincerely hope you find a Biblically sound church in your area. Have you already asked the hard questions of the pastor/elders of the churches you are considering attending? Have they been open and welcoming in answering any and all your questions and concerns? I had to leave my long-time church when I realized that just by asking questions I was labeled a troublemaker. (I can thank the “purpose driven” training from Saddleback that the elders received for dealing with a member who questions.)

          • Maggie September 20, 2017 at 3:56 pm #

            I understand Moriel Ministries is helping to start churches globally that are continuationist/Pentecostal? with emphasis on sound biblical teaching. You may want to look into that.

          • Manny1962 September 20, 2017 at 7:00 pm #

            Hi Maggie,

            It’s come to the point that I personally cannot recommend any congregation in my area. It’s heartbreaking, but I’ve come to the conclusion that 99% of professing Christendom is either outright apostate or in the process of apostasizing. Truly dark the days are!

          • Maggie September 20, 2017 at 8:06 pm #

            Oh, Manny, I know. I found my present church through the discernment ministry of my pastor. I travel a fair distance to attend and I am happy to do it. Closer to home, I attend a Lutheran Bible study with mostly elderly ladies. I’m very grateful for both groups. May the Lord provide all that you and your family need and give you strength and encouragement in these dark times!

  2. Manny1962 May 9, 2017 at 9:07 pm #

    Hi Kim,

    Remember, you’re not alone…..you’re very much loved by an amazing God. All I can tell you is keep on keeping on! Read your bible, and keep on praying! God is miraculous, and He is faithful to meet all your needs! God bless you Kim, may our amazing God be a lamp unto your feet! And pray for your husband, seeing your godliness on display might change his disposition. He is coming soon! Maranatha!

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