Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Does Bill Johnson claim that he teaches a "different gospel?"

I am posting this article for my friend and fellow apologist W. B. McCarty. I think you will find it worth your consideration. A while back Bill Johnson preached a sermon in which he stated that signs and wonders were a requirement of the gospel. Essentially Johnson's premise is that gospel preaching should be disregarded if not backed up with signs and wonders ("mainfestation or demonstration of power"). This has far-reaching implications.

An Open Letter to Bill Johnson and Those Who Follow Him.

Many of my friends follow Bill Johnson. Perhaps you are reading this because you are one of them. Whether or not I know you is unimportant to the message of this letter. It's intended for all who follow Bill Johnson or, perhaps more accurately, Bill Johnson's teachings. But it has special, personal relevance to those of my friends who follow Bill Johnson.

Lately Bill Johnson and his followers have made some most extraordinary claims. Chief among these, I think, is that what they call a "glory cloud" --a physical manifestation of the presence of God, taking the form of a sparkly, luminescent cloud--had been regularly appearing at Bill Johson's Bethel Church. The appearance of that phenomenon has been the occasion of discussion, some of it quite heated, between followers of Bill Johnson and others, including me. A primary issue in those discussions has been the authenticity of the glory cloud, which might be, as Bill Johnson's followers understand it to be, an authentic theophany. Alternatively, it might be a man-made or natural phenomenon. Finally, it might even be a false miracle (2 Thess. 2:9).

I myself am skeptical concerning the nature of the so-called glory cloud. Whatever it may be, I strongly doubt that it is a divine manifestation. My expressed skepticism has led some of my friends to accuse me of being hyper-critical, of working in active opposition to God by failing to attend to the unity of the visible church, and any of a number of shortcomings and sins.

Not too long ago, one of my friends initiated a series of discussions of the glory cloud and related issues with me and others on a Facebook page created to publish warnings and critiques concerning Bill Johnson's Bethel Church. Later, my friend was joined by another apologist for Bethel. Our discussions touched on a number of topics but at the end of the day we had made little progress toward better understanding one another's views and, if anything, were probably less favorably disposed than before to accept one another's views.

I spent time today reflecting on these discussions and have concluded that almost all of them were a waste of time. That's the case not simply because no progress was made. It's the case because one of the topics we discussed is vastly more important than the other. And, interestingly, in my own view, that's the topic that I believe was never squarely addressed by followers of Bethel. I returned time and again to that topic, even at one point reducing my argument to a yes/no question. But I never received a forthright response.

That topic and my associated question are my reason for writing this letter. My question was this, "Does Bill Johnson claim that he teaches a 'different gospel?'" Now, let me cut to the chase and state that, from my standpoint, the answer to this question is an unambiguous "yes." This is so not because I have analysed Bill Johnson's gospel and found it to be at odds with the biblical gospel. I have done so, but that is beside the point. It is unambiguously so because Bill Johnson himself says it's so. And I believe he should be taken at his word.

In a sermon titled "The Requirement of Miracles" (Dec. 11, 2011, evening service. Available via ibetheltv.com) Bill Johnson explains that the gospel preached by most of the visible church, today and in recent history, is not the authentic biblical gospel but a "different gospel." To be authentic, he argues, the gospel must be presented in the context of signs and wonders. To be clear, he does not claim that the gospel could be presented in the context of signs and wonders. He does not claim that the gospel should be presented in the context of signs and wonders. He claims, as I wrote, that the gospel must be presented in the context of signs and wonders. As he puts it, a gospel message not confirmed by signs and wonders is a "different gospel."

Those who are familiar with Christian theology recognize Bill Johnson's claim as a most extraordinary one. Two important questions follow immediately: (1) Is he right? Must the gospel be presented in the context of signs and wonders? and (2) What are the implications of his claim? In this letter, I propose to deal only with the second of these questions; that is, the implications of his claim. It's not the case, of course, that the first question is unimportant or undeserving of analysis. But I think that the second question is actually more immediately relevant because I believe that Bill Johnson and his followers haven't adequately considered it.

The gospel is the central fact and doctrine of the Christian faith. Moreover, it is the boundary that distinguishes that which is Christian from that which is non-Christian. Those who trust in the gospel are Christians and part of the body of Christ. Those who don't trust in the gospel are neither Christians nor part of the body of Christ. Bill Johnson's claim, therefore, that most of the church preaches a "different gospel" is a most far-reaching claim because it entails that most of the visible church is not actually part of Christ's body. To be sure, Bill Johnson does not deal with this implication of his claim. He might even deny this implication even as he affirms his claim. But no such have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too option is available to him. The Apostle Paul in the Epistle to the Galatians explicates with great clarity and force the uniqueness and eternal immutability of the gospel; there is only one gospel message and it can never be changed. Paul expresses himself in the strongest possible terms:

"But even if we (or an angel from heaven) should preach  a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be condemned to hell!  As we have said before, and now I say again, if any one is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, let him be condemned to hell!" (Gal. 1:8-9).

Another implication follows from Bill Johnson's claim that most of the church preaches a "different gospel" than that preached by Paul: Those who preach a different gospel, by implication including me and those in my own church, are under Paul's anathema. We are cursed and bound for eternal doom, Of course, Bill Johnson may be wrong. It is possible, and indeed I would insist it's the case, that it's Bill Johnson who preaches a gospel different from that preached by Paul. In that case it's Bill Johnson who is under Paul's anathema. Now, as I wrote, I have stated my opinion but don't propose to argue in this letter who is right and who is wrong. Instead, I want only to clarify the implications of Bill Johnson's claim.

The key implication I want to call out is this: Simply put, Bill Johnson's claim divides the body of Christ. One group or another--those who follow Bill Johnson's understanding of the gospel or those who do not--is not actually part of Christ's body. This implication of Bill Johnson's claim is ironic in view of the high value his followers claim to place on Christian unity. One good friend of mine, a pastor, has actually claimed that God values unity over truth; that God is more concerned that Christians not judge or criticize one another than He is concerned that they be united in truth. I disagree with my friend's claim in the strongest possible terms. Unity at the expense of the gospel is no unity at all. But, again, I don't propose to argue in this letter for my view over against the view of Bill Johnson. My concern is only with the implications of his claim that I and those in my church, because we do not regard signs and wonders as integral to the gospel, believe and preach a non-biblical gospel.

The frank implication is this. Bill Johnson and those who accept his claim are not my brothers or sisters in Christ. We can argue about which is which but either I or they are not part of Christ's church. Either I or they are presently on the broad road leading to destruction and so, absent repentance and acceptance of the true biblical gospel, either I or they will spend eternity in Hell.

Now, if you are among Bill Johnson's followers, I am pretty sure you're saying to yourself right now that Bill Johnson said no such thing. He didn't say that I and those like me are damned. Bill Johnson, you might protest, loves the whole church. If that's what you're thinking I need to remind you that Bill Johnson doesn't have the option to indulge this view at the same time he claims that I and others like me believe and preach a different gospel. There cannot be two gospels. If they are different, at least one is wrong. And one who holds a wrong gospel is outside the Church.

So here's where we're left. Either I'm outside the church because I've never believed the true gospel or Bill Johnson is outside the church because he has apostatized from the true gospel and now teaches a different gospel. It really doesn't matter, in some ways, which is right. For instance, if you follow Bill Johnson's view, Christ's Great Commission requires that you work to convince me that Bill Johnson preaches the true gospel. I on the other hand, since I do not follow Bill Johnson's view, am required to call him and those who follow him, who are apostates in my eyes, to return to the true gospel. In my view, we need to face these facts and deal forthrightly with them. And that, friends, is the purpose and bottom line of my letter. No other issue that we've recently discussed matters as much as this. Whether or not God sends disease, whether or not the glory cloud is authentic, whether or not Jesus healed all who came to Him--these issues pale in comparison to the issue I put before you now.

Far and away the most important issue is this: Does the gospel include, as a matter of necessity, signs and wonders? I submit that it does not. I submit that if you think it does you are holding a different gospel and have placed yourself under Paul's Gal 1:6 anathema. I call on you now, at peril of your immortal soul, to repent and return to the true gospel of Christ. To be sure, you're welcome to all the signs and wonders the Spirit is willing to extend so long as you do not claim them as a necessary part of the gospel. But if you add anything at all to the Gospel--signs and wonders, promises of bodily health, promises of financial prosperity, anything at all--you have departed from the faith once for all delivered. Friends, I reiterate: your immortal soul is in peril. Repent from Bill Johnson's false gospel of signs and wonders. Flee to the simplicity of Christ. Your so-called gospel of signs and wonders is in reality a subtle form of legalism that binds you, keeping you from the grace that God freely offers.

Moreover, this is no mere difference of opinion. Unless you repent, I cannot biblically continue to regard you as brother or sister in Christ but must regard you as an enemy of the gospel. And even if you don't change your own view, if you are consistent in biblically working out its implications, you must regard me similarly--not could, not should, but must.

May God have mercy on us all.

20 comments:

  1. orland foster6/5/13, 5:46 PM

    “But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.” (Matthew 12:39, NKJV)

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  2. I am not very familiar with Bill, I heard him speak once thats it, but I think you are connecting dots that don't connect. Where's the Grace? it seems like you want to prove your right and don't care about God or his people. Do you really want the same judgement done on you?

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    1. Have you read Galatians? REally?

      ____
      SingingCurls

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    2. mr. anonymous, you even stated that you are not familiar with Bill Johnson. If you believe the bible, and were familiar with him, you would see lots of connecting dots. Bill Johnson is a false teacher.

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    3. Maybe those who claims that bill johnson is a false teacher is a false teacher. because a false teacher is the people who easly offended by the heavenly realms that being demonstrated by people who connect to the heart of the Father. stop judging...dont worry because IF bill johnson is a false teacher, He will judge him not you...and if you are afraid your people will follow bill, maybe you just need more love...Love never failss..dont focus on the other side of the gospel which is judgment. KEEP YOUR LOVE ON :p

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  3. Anon- Johnson is the one who makes the claim. Where is the grace?

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  4. William: your logic is crystal clear and irrefutable. As you state, the logic holds regardless of who is right. According to the words of Bill Johnson, either Johnson has the true gospel and William Fawcett does not, or Fawcett has the true gospel and Johnson does not. Bill Johnson's statements, coupled with Galatians 1:8-9, mean that there is no other conclusion.

    Anon: for your question "Do you really want the same judgement done on you?", I would give the Biblical answer: "yes". James 3:1 states "Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly." Since both Bill Johnson and William Fawcett are teachers, they will both be judged more strictly. I'm an elder in my church, and I teach in-depth Bible studies, so I am also subject to a stricter judgement. This is because what I do and say as an elder and teacher has much more impact on others' spiritual life and growth than what a non-teacher says or does.

    We must all submit ourselves to the judgement of Scripture, in one of either two contexts: (1) those who do not follow Christ at all are subject to eternal judgement in the lake of fire, or (2) those of us who do follow Christ are fully forgiven of all their sin by the blood of Christ, but their works will be judged (1 Cor 13:12-15). Only godly works will remain at the end. I have placed my trust in God, who I believe has placed me in the 2nd category, by His grace and His grace alone.

    Grace has nothing to do with this question, except to place us in category (1): those who reject God's grace entirely, or (2) those under God's grace but whose works and teaching will still be judged.

    Someone who says "I am not subject to any judgement at all" is outside the truth of Scripture, and must be willing to be corrected with a true understanding of what God really loves. To love Him is to obey Him and (this is cool!) the first commandment is to love Him! Truth and love are inseparable.

    In the 7 letters to the churches, Jesus either criticized or commended churches based on how they dealt with false teaching. Paul states "who am I to judge those outside the church; am I not to judge those inside the church?" (1 Cor 5:12).

    Grace and judgement go hand in hand. God's judgement on the wicked is a great gift of grace, in the end (the book of Revelation) to the true followers of God, since it is the only way that God will deal a final death blow to sin. I really want to live in a new heaven and new earth someday where there is no sin and there is no evil. That is a gift of grace God will give all true believers, and it can only come about if God terminates all who remain in rebellion by tossing them into the lake of fire. And in the book of Revelation, heaven and those who dwell in heaven rejoice when these judgements are poured out on the wicked.

    Thus, grace and judgement do not contradict each other at all. Grace changes what kind of judgement we receive (gratefully so!). We can thank God, greatly, for both His grace and His judgement.

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  5. Joh 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.

    If you aren't seeing these "Greater Works" in your life, then something not right. Doesn't mean you're not saved, you just aren't walking in the fullness of what God has promised to you. God cannot lie, therefore we know he is NOT the problem. You must reconcile your walk with this scripture (and others including Gal 1:8-9). Pauls Gospel, Peter's Gospel, the other Apostles Gospel and even Stephen's gospel (who waited tables and did great wonders and miracles) ALL contained signs, wonders, miracles and healing. It would seem then that Bill Johnson's teaching is much more congruent with these scriptures than those who argue against them. It's not that those who choose to not believe in miracles, etc. are not saved. I don't believe Bill Johnson would say this (although you seem to have no problem saying he is outside of Christ). But you are simply being "short changed" because of your false belief system. What he is saying is that the gospel that Jesus taught and passed to the Apostles contained the miraculous wonders of a living God. If your gospel does not have room for this, then you are the ones who are believing a "watered down" or "different" gospel and not the gospel that the apostles presented. Does Bill Johnson have everything perfect? probably not. I don't think anyone truly does. He strives for perfection like everyone else. If you are perfect, then by all means throw all the stones you want.

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    1. Anon, Regarding John 14:12, What do you consider a greater work? If a christian is to do greater works than Jesus did as you ascribe to this verse, what is a greater work than raising someone from the dead? Could it perhaps be the greater work Jesus speaks of is not temporal but in fact eternal and has very little to do with being flashy before an unbelieving world. For thousands saw and heard of the miracles of Jesus and yet only a relative few believed. It is not the miracles that bring people to faith, it is the testimony of Christs sacrifice on the cross delivered through the mouths of men as directed by the Holy Spirit. The greater work, being eternal in nature, is bringing the gospel of Christ and Him crucified to those who have an ear to hear. No temporal work, being a miracle or not, can be greater than the work of God's saving grace bestowing the gift of eternal life with Him.
      As you can tell, I disagree that someones walk with God can be judge by the working of miracles. This type of thinking makes a persons walk into a walk of works since you always be looking for that greater work. If you don't have it than you have to work harder to please God. This is what the Pharisees did.

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    2. jyoung279 your proposal for John 14:12 to be taken in the sense of eternal rather temporal to at least the life lived on earth is not consistent to the context of the passage where Jesus spoke of being one with the Father. Jesus clearly said that "he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do". These are troubling words when you read them and try to compare them to the state of present Christianity (American/European). So honestly what does one do when confronted with such a pregnant verse? The current response has been to ignore it or relegate it to "spiritual" works. Then there are others like Mr Johnson who are just taking what Jesus said a face value and believe He meant for His followers to stupefying things in His Name to reach a lost world. So How does that happen, Jesus gave the qualifier in the following verse "Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do". These miraculous events are just the build up miracles to the great miracle of salvation. So the question asks itself ever so beggingly, why is the church not functioning in great power to rjyoung279 your proposal for John 14:12 to be taken in the sense of eternal rather temporal is strained because it is not consistent with the context of the passage where Jesus spoke of being one with the Father and granting His followers favor and blessing. Jesus clearly said that "he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do". These are troubling words when you read them and try to compare them to the state of present Christianity (American/European). So honestly what does one do when confronted with such a pregnant verse? The current response has been to ignore it or relegate it to "spiritual" works. Then there are others like Mr Johnson who are just taking what Jesus said at face value and believe He meant for His followers do stupefying things in His Name to reach a lost world. So how does that happen? Jesus gave the qualifier in the following verse "Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do". These miraculous events are just the build-up miracles to the great miracle of salvation. So the question asks itself ever so beggingly: why is the church not functioning in great power to reach the lost? What is the horrific nature of the vast majority of Christians’ relationship to the Father in the West? There has been a disturbing mollification of the radical nature of the church in the mandated Gospel that Jesus gave us to share with the world that is sin-distanced from the Great and Glorious God. So many believers have no clue of how Jesus lived day to day worshipping the Father every morning in praying and study or they simply refuse to follow Him with their whole being in modern society. For the most part, the attendees of church have rejected the vast promptings of the Holy Spirit to delve into a deep, rich, growing relationship with the Father through dedicated time of prayer and study making an intimate relationship with our Heavenly Father the most essential capital of this world. This has led to an ineffective group of Sunday gathers who claim the Gospel of Jesus but have rejected the blessings intended to go with it, in other words holders of fire insurance. The testimony of Christ is made manifest in our lives day by day and seen as we truly yield to Him in an ever deepening relationship, this also allows the Spirit of God to manifest in unforeseen ways to accomplish His Divine Will, the salvation of the lost. each the lost? What is the horrific nature of the vast majority of Christians in the West? There has been a disturbing mollification of the radical nature of the church in the mandated Gospel that Jesus gave us to share with the world that is sin-distanced from the Great and Glorious God.

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    3. Quite honestly, I am still having trouble with your interpretation, which is the same as many, that this is REALLY about us. Looking at the context, who is he speaking to and is the word "he" really about "all believers" or is it about those who are in the room with Him? because clearly, He doesn't do "anything" that is asked of Him. My faith may be as large as a "mustard seed" but if it isn't the will of the Father then "anything in His name" that is outside His "will" will not be answered.

      I am still of the mind that He is Speaking to the apostles and disciples of the day that will carry on His work to establish the "Church of Jesus Christ". This is not to say that He will not answer prayer but it must be to "Glorify the Father" so in reality to me it isn't just "anything"...

      Tim

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  6. "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. If ye love me, keep my commandments." (John 14:12-15)

    He now reveals to them that those who believe in Him and His works would do greater works when He returned to the Father. The greater works they would do would not be in magnitude, but in number. His ministry on earth would last only three years, but there would be many of them and they would have many more years to serve Him. Jesus explained that what they asked in His name, He would do, in that He the Son would glorify the Father. Those who loved and obeyed Him, as His servants, in His will, and at His direction He would answer. Jesus in Matthew 6:5-15 explained to His disciples how they were to pray. He said they were to address their prayers to God the Father who would answer them. Always through His ministry Jesus proclaimed that what He did was the will of the Father. He qualifies His proclamation of answered prayer further by subjective words, "If you love me, keep my commandments." As He did the Father's will, so those who were His true disciples would keep His commandments.

    The above is yet but one commentary that is available and yet there are others that would oppose this and be in thinking with the more general thought that the "greater works" was the types of manifestations.

    But I ask, who was Jesus speaking to in this chapter of John... look back at the beginning of the discourse. They are together, privately with Jesus. Jesus is speaking to his now chosen Apostles and to them only. He is giving them direction, explanation oof his going away. It is not directed at the masses at this time and this discourse goes until chapter 17. Is there universal application? I believe so but that does not mean that the "greater works" is manifestations but rather the fact that many, many, many followers will be spreading the gospel. Therefore, "greater works" in quatity.

    Tim

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  7. Everywhere Jesus went Miracles followed...they called him the devil. I believe God is big enough to do or manifest how ever he wants to. A false miracle is performed by false people like Pharoahs magicians..they never claimed to serve the One true God.I follow the heart...that is what God watches and judges.From the heart flow the issues of life. People who sew this kind of discord are wrong, wether due to fear, religion or dogma. If a person is doing Good why do you call them evil??

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  8. Amen!!! Hallelujah!!!!! Yeshua is King. Bill Johnson is a false teacher. If you agree, please, please, please, say at least a little prayer for ALL of my immediate family (there are 5 not including me and even more loved ones caught in the snare and currently endorsing/attending his "services") I would really appreciate it. Thanks and God bless you richly.

    To the author of the article- THANK YOU!!! for exposing this man and his teachings for who/what he/they is/are. (And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them - Eph. 5:11) I see more of a chink in his armor and will definitely try to exploit for the sake of the King and the souls at peril. Thank you for the truth of the matter and also your solid reasoning. God bless!!! (Yahweh Saves!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

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  9. Anonymous from 10/28/13, 1:49 PM,
    Be very careful following the heart. I will not judge anyone here, though I must say I see many valid points made in this article and don't fully agree with all that come from Bethel Redding, CA. But to say you follow the heart tells me you do not rely on the word of God as you should. God said this about the heart.
    Jeremiah 17:5-11

    Thus says the LORD, "Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind And makes flesh his strength, And whose heart turns away from the LORD. "For he will be like a bush in the desert And will not see when prosperity comes, But will live in stony wastes in the wilderness, A land of salt without inhabitant. "Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD And whose trust is the LORD, "For he will be like a tree planted by the water, That extends its roots by a stream And will not fear when the heat comes; But its leaves will be green, And it will not be anxious in a year of drought Nor cease to yield fruit. "The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it? "I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds, "As a partridge that hatches eggs which it has not laid, So is he who makes a fortune, but unjustly; In the midst of his days it will forsake him, And in the end he will be a fool."

    Also God promoted His word and His own name above all else so we better pay attention to both. We cannot ignore His word. To know Him and His will we must be in His word and let Holy Spirit reveal to us truth.
    Psalm 138:2
    I bow down toward your holy temple and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness, for you have exalted above all things your name and your word.
    I'd listen to someone well submersed in the word before I'd listen to someone who only listens to teaching from the pulpit.

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  10. How is Bill Johnson in sin? He is doing the Great Commission. He is obeying the commands of Christ. He is not judging people, looking for them to err, and then comdemning them. He is not attributing the works of the Holy Spirit to the DEVIL. What you do is the one unforgiveable. If he messes up once in a while, he is still striving to "Be perfect as your Father in Heaven in perfect." At least He is not BLASPHEMING THE HOLY SPIRIT!
    ~Lindsey

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    1. Serving Jesus5/20/14, 12:35 AM

      Sorry, I live in the Redding area and yes, they are preaching a different gospel. Jesus is the one who does the miracles through us when He chooses. They are teaching that you can do these miracle too just like Jesus....Where is the discernment of the Holy Spirit. Where is the accountability? There is none! And no we can do nothing aside of the Power of God. He may use us to be a part of a supernatural miracle. Signs and wonders follow, they aren't a requirement. What is a requirement is that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and NO one can come to the Father except through Him. They are basing a a persons Christianity on the gifts and experiences and not on believing in the Lord Jesus Christ. I remember a teacher, Pastor Jeff Ling," The blood of Jesus plus nothing gets you saved".

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  11. You need to understand what blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is, and these works at Bethel and through Jesus Culture, Bill Johnson and the like, are not found in the Word, and are not consistent with God's Word. So be careful Lindsey what you attribute to the work of the Lord...

    “So when these people or the prophet or the priest ask you, saying, ‘What is the oracle of the Lord?’ you shall then say to them, ‘What oracle?’ I will even forsake you,” says the Lord.

    “And as for the prophet and the priest >>>>and the people who say, ‘The oracle of the Lord!’ I will even punish that man and his house. Thus every one of you shall say to his neighbor, and every one to his brother, ‘What has the Lord answered?’ and, ‘What has the Lord spoken?’

    And the oracle of the Lord you shall mention no more. For every man’s word will be his oracle, for you have perverted the words of the living God, the Lord of hosts, our God. Thus you shall say to the prophet, ‘What has the Lord answered you?’ and, ‘What has the Lord spoken?’ But since you say, ‘The oracle of the Lord!’ therefore thus says the Lord: ‘Because you say this word, “The oracle of the Lord!” and I have sent to you, saying, “Do not say, ‘The oracle of the Lord!’” therefore behold, I, even I, will utterly forget you and forsake you, and the city that I gave you and your fathers, and will cast you out of My presence. And I will bring an everlasting reproach upon you, and a perpetual shame, which shall not be forgotten.’” Jer 23:33-40

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  12. HHhmmm, no one has it all as we see through a darkened glass BUT, we can glean from many denominations and beliefs when we tread carefully and cautiously. No one doctrine lines up fully. Here we have signs and wonders, here we have none, here we have grace, here we have law, here we have tolerance, here we have none, here we have baptism in JESUS name, here we have baptism in TITLES only, here we have love, here we have judgement, here we have healing ministries, here we have no belief in that anymore, here we have ministers and laity, here we have ALL are ministers of the Gospel, here we have Gifts of the Spirit, here we have none but we ALL have JESUS, etc. etc. etc. For myself, I KNOW what kind of relationship I have with my Lord and Savior and HE has taken me many places within myself that allows me to understand who I am and why I do or act how I do and in so doing, has healed me from the inside out. I am still a work in progress but I know one thing, I have been given the gift of Love and to love others unconditionally. HE truly breaks chains and sets us free which means TRULY free to worship in whatever capacity He sets. For HE uses the foolish things to confound the wise....

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  13. "I am posting this article for my friend and fellow apologist W. B. McCarty. I think you will find it worth your consideration. A while back Bill Johnson preached a sermon in which he stated that signs and wonders were a requirement of the gospel. Essentially Johnson's premise is that gospel preaching should be disregarded if not backed up with signs and wonders ("mainfestation or demonstration of power").

    Such asinine STUPIDITY!

    Then, to follow it with, "This has far-reaching implications" reveals a pathetic lack of understanding the gospel of the grace of God and reveals that your excessive level of unbelief disqualifies you from speaking on the subject.

    God confirms His Word with signs following (if you need the references, you demonstrate again your lack of qualifications in addressing this subject)

    Additionally, Jesus said, "Be it unto you according to your faith," therefore, the prudent and astute can see the value in keeping one's mouth closed in any area where someone is exercising their faith for the miraculous and supernatural.

    The unbelief that offends God so much that He responds in silence to it is what I expect from the person whose remarks I quoted and everyone who is of the same spirit (of unbelief).

    The miraculous is an area unsuited for the rank unbelief of Christians who like looking like the world, who watch the same television programs and go to the same doctors when our Lord declared that He IS the YHWH-Rapha.

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