Also See Roots of Evil:
The loosely organized movement that began with Phineas Parkhurst Quimby, an unschooled Maine clockmaker and inventor who believed that he had rediscovered the lost healing methods of Jesus, eventually became known as New Thought. New Thought is the cornerstone for most of the formulas for happy and successful living. Reduced to it’s essentials, it very simply believes that your thoughts play a crucial role in the kind of life you experience, which is exactly what is being trumpeted from pulpits across the land. Additionally Phineas Quimby’s metaphysical teachings influenced E.W. Kenyon, and it was E.W. Kenyon's teachings that in turn influenced Kenneth Hagin, known as the father of the Word/Faith movement. Tracing this unholy genealogy can be confusing. The chart on this page should make it a little easier, and prove enlightening. The Common Origins of Christian Science, New Thought, Unity School of Christianity and the Word-Faith movement...
What Is New Thought?
“New Thought, as defined in the dictionary, is a modern spiritual philosophy stressing the power of right thinking in a person's life, the idea that our thoughts and attitudes affect our experience and that God (or whatever other name a person might have for a Higher Power) is within the individual.
New Thought is a logical and scientifically based understanding and method of changing our experience by changing our thinking. New Thought is simple and easy to learn. It has a tradition that reaches back over one hundred years and is founded on principles that embrace many of the world religious and spiritual practices spanning thousands of years.
New Thought recognizes that human beings function on many levels: that the individual is a mental, spiritual, emotional and physical being. In realizing our fullness, our wholeness and maximizing our potential we are, in essence, finding fulfillment…..
New Thought teaches people tools, which put us on the path to fulfillment. The natural extension of this fulfillment is that as an individual's life is better, their family's life is better, their community's life is better and this extends out across the planet”. (ANTN. Affiliated New Thought Network. www.newthought.org)
The Origins of New Thought: New Thought originated in part with an unschooled Maine clockmaker and inventor named Phineas Parkhurst Quimby, who believed that he had rediscovered the lost healing methods of Jesus. The loosely organized movement that began with him eventually became known as New Thought, and consisted of a number of independently developed branches such as Unity, Religious Science, and Divine Science. (New Thought: A Practical American Spirituality by C. Alan Anderson and Deborah G. Whitehouse. Chapter 1). However there were other influential people in the progress of New Thought... See Roots of Evil:
Teachers: Two of the best known teachers of New Thought today are Mary Manin Morissey (Living Enrichment Center, Wilsonville Oregon) (on television every Sunday morning) and Della Reese… co-leader of the organization called Upchurch, who has been showcased as a Christian Minister. (See related article [See Touched by an Angel].
New Thought And The Bible: New Thoughters superficially appears to be in tune with Christian doctrine by selectively quoting from the Bible, but a complete reading of the very Scriptures that they maintain forms their “primary textbook” would nullify all their claims. There is no intellectually honest way to carve up the documents according to ones own liking and philosophical preferences. There is overwhelming historical reliability of the extra-biblical and biblical source documents concerning the Bible and Jesus’ life. (See Section A Remarkable Book ).
The simple question could be asked… Whose word is more reliable? Those closest to Jesus who, walked with Jesus, were eyewitnesses, who signed their testimonies with their lifeblood, or those (like Quimby) who are often two thousand years removed from the events and have absolutely nothing to back up any of their claims or teachings? (See Jesus Plain And Simple).
A ‘Metaphysical’ interpretation of the Bible is little more than an excuse not to respond to the demands of its message, and is often based on preconceived theories, which are themselves unproven or unproveable. (See Esotericism and Biblical Interpretation)
The frequent references to Scripture to back arguments, and the effort to show Jesus to be one with New Thought doctrine is dangerously deceptive. The sheep’s clothing on the outside hides a deeper and more sinister wolf, one that without doubt needs to be kept as far as possible from the pulpits of Christ. Below I have taken some of New Thought’s fundamental beliefs and weighed them against that which the Bible preaches, showing beyond doubt that the two are not only incompatible but are in fact adversaries.
Some New Thought Teachings
New Thought is expressed in Romans 12:2, "Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind." New Thoughters seek nothing less than total life transformation, empowerment through changing their thoughts and keeping them changed. The linchpin of New Thought is the Law of Mind Action: thoughts held in mind produce after their kind. (1)
Unfortunately this is a classic case of taking a verse completely taken out of context thereby altering the meaning.. “ Conversion and sanctification are the renewing of the mind; a change, not of the substance, but of the qualities of the soul. The progress of sanctification, dying to sin more and more, and living to righteousness more and more, is the carrying on this renewing work, till it is perfected in glory…. The work of the Holy Ghost first begins in the understanding, and is carried on to the will, affections, and conversation, till there is a change of the whole man into the likeness of God, in knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness”. (Matthew Henry. Emphasis Added)
Romans 12:2 is only a continuation of Romans 12:1 which says “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service”.
Neither verse has anything to do with ‘empowerment through changing ones thoughts’ but a transformation from sin to righteousness.
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new”. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
“New Thought is what all Christianity could have become if it had been able to avoid the stultifying tendencies needed to become a religion capable of competing with mystery religions for the title of official religion of the Roman Empire. It is what all Christianity could have become if it had allowed freedom of belief, concentrating on following the loving, healing example of Jesus rather than developing a rigid superstructure of teachings about Jesus”. . (1)
No one could show as much love and compassion for humans as the Lord did. Besides dying for us it is true that He healed many many people. However it is selective reading at its best to focus solely on His ‘loving, healing example’. He devoted more than half His parables to God’s eternal judgment on sin. “Of the twelve uses of the word gehenna (the strongest word for hell) in the New Testament, eleven come from the lips of Jesus himself! In fact, the Savior taught more about hell than He did about heaven! Of the more than 1850 verses recording the words of Christ, 13% pertain to the topics of judgment and hell. Of the 40 or so parables uttered by Jesus, more than half relate to God's eternal judgment on sin. Surprisingly, the much beloved "Sermon on the Mount" contains some of Jesus' most straightforward words about hell”. (Rick Rood) (See Section on Hell)
Additionally Jesus was a Jew, born to into a religious system that is perhaps one of the most structured and demanding in history. Nowhere in the Bible does it indicate that Jesus deviated from His commitments as a Jew; much to the contrary we see several examples of Jesus attending the Synagogue, participating the Passover rituals and regularly going to the Temple.
Not only did Jesus command His followers to keep the Old Testament law, He made it harder to do. A classic example of this is the Old Testament commandment “Thou shalt not commit adultery”;
“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart”. (Mat 5:27-28)
“Fundamentalists might have difficulty with the idea that the only Power in the universe is good. New Thought teaches that evil is insubstantial, that it is only immature or misused good. The Devil is the invention of our minds, and goes as fast as he comes. When you walk into a dark room and turn on the light, the darkness vanishes; you don't have to chase it away. (1)
In the light of such ‘philosophically profound’ belief I find myself at a loss for words. The misguided belief that good is the only force in the universe is indeed an interesting concept, especially when one takes into consideration the book of Job.
“Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them. And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.” (Job 1:6-7)
Now according to new thought philosophy, God (the “good power”) Himself is not only having a conversation with ‘immature good’ or an ‘invention of His mind’ and asking where it has come from, but astonishingly, the “immature good” replies to God and says it has been walking to and fro in the earth. An amazing achievement for a thought. Surely God being God should have known that all He had to do was ‘turn a light on’.
There are even more example of the personification of the devil in the Bible … the most notable being …
“And when the tempter came to him, he said, if thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread … (Mat 4:11) then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.” (Mat 4:3-11)
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:’ (1Pet 5:8)
“Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.” (Rev 2:10)
Is one truly expected to believe that the Devil is merely a wrong thought, when faced with the Bible’s indisputable evidence to the contrary? In the Matthew quotation the Devil comes to Jesus and speaks to Him, takes Him to the highest points of earth, tempts Him and eventually leaves Him; In the Peter quotation the Devil is referred to as a roaring lion that seeks to devour/destroy Christians; In the Revelation quotation the Devil casts Christians into prison and makes them suffer tribulation. Thoughts are not capable of roaming the earth, they are not capable of casting someone into prison and persecuting them, they are not capable of physically coming and going of their own accord and they are not a roaring lion (singular) that seeks to devour believers. One of the Devils greatest achievements is to make humanity believe that he does not exist, that he is merely a thought or an invention of the human subconscious, after all why fear that which does not exist… right? To that end New Thought philosophy is in perfect alignment with his strategy and to the believer at least is very dangerous.
The Bible was written by Oriental minds for Oriental minds, and most of it was never intended to be taken literally. Jesus cast out demons, which is to say in the language of today, that he straightened out people's thinking; and our fear thoughts are demonic indeed”. (1)
The Bible itself contradicts this notion over and over again. The Gospel message contained in the Bible is essentially concerned with God's future plans for the earth and for mankind. The Bible is the record of God's continuing activity, centered in the work of His Son Jesus, and leading ultimately to man's redemption. The Bible is the Word of Salvation, which draws a road map for humanity to come out of the world of sin and into harmony with the will of God. The Bible is God’s will and has a purpose to achieve and will not stop until it has achieved that purpose.
Isaiah 55:11 ‘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.’
Furthermore God had every intention of the Gospel being spread through out the globe, a fact that clashes with the concept that the Bible was written by Orientals for the Oriental mind.
‘And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.’ (Matthew 24:14)
‘And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.’ (Mark 16:15)
“And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people.” (Revelation 14:6) All emphasis added.
God over and over again stressed to ancient Israel that they must keep His commandments, that the disobedience would bring the strictest punishment and that the wages of sin is death.
“Therefore shall ye keep my commandments, and do them: I am the LORD.” (Lev 22:31 )
“Ye shall diligently keep the commandments of the LORD your God, and his testimonies, and his statutes, which he hath commanded thee.” (Deut 6:17)
“But take diligent heed to do the commandment and the law, which Moses the servant of the LORD charged you, to love the LORD your God, and to walk in all his ways, and to keep his commandments, and to cleave unto him, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.” (Josh 22:5)
It would have been more than unfair of God to demand obedience to commandments that were ambiguous and hard to understand. God’s commandments were given very clearly and the people understood them perfectly, hence totally negating any possible argument that God’s Word is not to be taken literally. The Bible also comes with a very strict warning about the Scriptures, one that should be carefully considered before deciding to add ‘meaning’ to the recorded words …
“Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.” (Deut 4:2 ‘)
Also see Scientific Facts In The Bible (For those who believe that the Bible is merely symbolic)
Casting out of demons: If Jesus’ casting out of demons was merely straightening out people’s thinking how did the herd of swine come into it? Did the persons wrong thoughts beg Jesus to send them into the swine who then proceeded to commit mass suicide? (Matt 8:28-33). Perhaps the swine’s wrong thinking was that they imagined they were lemmings.
Fear Thoughts: If our ‘fear thoughts’ are demonic I wonder what the Lord meant when He said
“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge”:(Proverbs 1:7)
“The fear of the LORD prolongeth days” (Proverbs 10:27)
“...fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell”.(Matthew 10:28)
But New Thought does not concern itself with most religious doctrines. If the Virgin Birth literally happened, wonderful; if it didn't, that's fine, too. (1)
Of course New Thoughters do not concern themselves with religious doctrines… it does not serve their interests to do so. Christianity believes that Christ was the promised Messiah; a fact that depends heavily on His fulfilling ALL the prophesies of the Old Testament, including His being born to a virgin. Likewise Christianity rises or falls on the resurrection and should it be true that Jesus did rise from the dead then the implications are enormous. He is no longer the ‘way shower’ but Almighty God Himself. As C.S. Lewis once said “
"A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic - on the level with a man who says he is a poached egg - or he would be the devil of hell. You must take your choice. Either this was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us." (‘Mere Christianity’) (See Section on The Resurrection)
“If this is a universe of thought, then changing one's thought changes the universe, at least a smidgin”. (1)
Reading this comment I had two thoughts... both interesting. The first is what would happen if a New Thoughter found himself/herself in the place of Job, standing before the thunderstorm and God spoke, saying
“Who is this who darkens counsel, by words without knowledge? Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me. Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding …” (Job 38:2-4).
Somehow I find it difficult to believe that even the greatest disciple of New Thought knows the treasury of snow or can send out lightning or restrict the sea to its boundaries. To believe that merely by thoughts man can change God’s eternal plan is not only dangerous and arrogant it also puts man on a collision course with the God of the Universe.
Secondly New Thoughters must have a very ugly vision in mind for the world. With the significant numbers of New Thoughters springing up worldwide surely this earth must be (by now) a mirror image of the sum of their thoughts. A beautiful place of crime, drugs, wars, violence and hate; a world that is rapidly spiraling out of control, on a one-way, nonstop track to Armageddon. Contrary to New Thought doctrine the condition of the world as it is today is a perfect fulfillment of Jesus’ prophesy of the end of times as told in the book of Matthew (Mat 24).
“Yet if New Thought is spiritual, it is also intensely practical. It is the application of one's religious beliefs to solve the daily problems of living. Originally dealing with problems of sickness, it rapidly expanded to include problems with lack of money or difficulties in relationships with other people. Jesus, in his great compassion for people, saw to it that their daily needs were met, and taught us to pray for ‘our daily bread’." (1)
Sure Jesus did teach us to pray for our daily bread and had great compassion for people, both of which are undeniable facts. But if one claims He really meant us to pray for our daily bread then one also has to accept that He meant us to pray the rest of it as well. Lets take a look at an earlier line which says “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven”. Remember it says THY WILL be done. His will, not ours. Later in the prayer Jesus teaches us to say “forgive us our sins” and then goes on with “lead us not into temptation and deliver us from evil”. (Incidentally Jesus taught about the repentance for sin and the consequences of impenitence far more than any other single topic in His ministry). and lets not forget that elsewhere He told people to take up their cross and follow Him.
“Only in recent history is Jesus thought to be the one and only son of God. Philosophers throughout time have generally agreed that the term "The Son" more aptly refers to Creation in the broadest possible understanding of the word”. (2)
Paul, considered to be the author of 2/3rds of the New Testament, would have had a definite problem with this belief of the New Thought movement. Paul himself lived during the times of the apostles and it is commonly accepted that had his writings been fallacious someone would have been quick to correct the error. Since there is no evidence of that, one must assume that his letter to the Galatians was an accurate reflection of the beliefs of the men and women who first served Jesus Christ as disciples and Christians.
“But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law” (Gal 4:4), which clearly demonstrates that Paul (and all the other disciples) knew and preached Jesus as the actually and living Son of God. (Emphasis added).
Then we have the famous John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” The Words of Jesus Himself as recorded by John, a disciple and follower of Jesus. The words could not be clearer when they say “Only begotten Son”, proving that not only did Jesus claim to be the one and only Son of God but John evidently believe it and wrote it down in his gospel. Again dispelling the claim that the belief in Jesus as the only begotten Son of God is a “recent” development.
Let’s also take a look then at the words of Justin Martyr (100 – 165), who was a teacher of philosophy at schools in Alexandria and Ephesus …
“Moreover, the Son of God called Jesus, even if only a man by ordinary generation, yet, on account of His wisdom, is worthy to be called the Son of God; for all writers call God the Father of men and gods. And if we assert that the Word of God was born of God in a peculiar manner, different from ordinary generation, let this, as said above, be no extraordinary thing to you…” (Justin Martyr. The First Apology of Justin. Chapter XXII. ‘Analogies to the Sonship of Christ’).
“…but because we say true things: and (secondly) that Jesus Christ is the only proper Son who has been begotten by God, being His Word and first-begotten, and power; and, becoming man according to His will, He taught us these things for the conversion and restoration of the human race: (Justin Martyr. The First Apology of Justin. Chapter XXIII. ‘The Argument’)
But perhaps Justin Martyr said it best in Chapter LVIII. ‘And Raise Up Heretics’. He could have been speaking to New Thought proponents.
“And, as we said before, the devils put forward Marcion of Pontus, who is even now teaching men to deny that God is the maker of all things in heaven and on earth, and that the Christ predicted by the prophets is His Son, and preaches another god besides the Creator of all, and likewise another son.
We believe there is a power for Good in the Universe, greater than you are and you can use it. …We know the spark of God, Spirit or whatever you choose to call your Higher Power resides in all life. Each one of us is a child of the Divine. (3)
You can believe this claptrap all you want but the New Testament very clearly disputes ‘the spark of God.. residing in all life’. A person had to repent, be baptized and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit…..
“Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit”. (Acts 2:38)
“And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Spirit, whom God hath given to them that obey him”. (Acts 5:32)
“Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Spirit”. (Acts 8:15 )
“Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit”. (Acts 8:17)
“And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Spirit was given, he offered them money” (Acts 8:18 )
“He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Spirit since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Spirit” (Acts 19:2) (All Emphasis added)
1) I Believe that my happiness was God intended….2) I Believe each time I think I impress upon the Law of God a perfect reflection of my thoughts… 3) I Believe Life is eternal and what is called death is merely a passing to the next level of Life's experience… 4)I Believe in God there is no concept of evil, ill health, lack, unhappiness, or death… 5) I Believe heaven and hell are not a destination but a result of our actions, now.” (Numbering added).(4)
1) One of the Lord’s greatest followers… Paul, responsible for 2/3 of the New Testament, didn’t sound too ‘happy’ when he wrote
“Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;” (2 Corinthians 11:25).
Furthermore History tells us that ten of the eleven disciples were hideously executed for what they believed in, as were thousands of early Christians. Why wasn’t their happiness God intended?
2) This is little but pure gobbledygook. How can anyone impress anything on the laws of God, leave alone ‘a perfect reflection of his thoughts’. God gave man His laws and warned over and over again of the consequences of not keeping them.
See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil; In that I command thee this day to love the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the LORD thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it. But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them;I denounce unto you this day, that ye shall surely perish, and that ye shall not prolong your days upon the land, whither thou passest over Jordan to go to possess it. (Deut 30:15-18)
“Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven”. (Matthew 5:19)
3 & 4) The warnings about death would not have been so severe had it been “merely a passing to the next level of Life's experience” The Bible tells us that
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord”. (Romans 6:23).
“He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death”. (Revelation 2:11).
“And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.” (Revelation 2:23).
We at the Center for Spiritual Awakening practice, to the best of our ability, to live life by the example of Jesus and other great spiritual and philosophical leaders throughout the centuries, namely to, love our neighbor as ourselves, and to trust that God is a positive energy of love which creates in our world a direct response to our positive word or affirmative prayer. And, to the degree that we have faith in this positive creative power / God, we can expect to live long healthy, loving and prosperous lives free from all discord and pain. This is what we believe Jesus taught and what he represented. (5)
It is totally hypocritical to claim to live life by the example of Jesus AND other great spiritual leaders when the teachings of Jesus so blatantly contradict those of other faiths and creeds. All other religions were founded by human beings and are based on man-made philosophies, rules and norms for behavior. Biblical Christianity is not just a philosophy of life, nor an ethical standard or obedience to religious ritual. True Christianity is based on a vital, personal relationship with a risen, living Savior and Lord who kept up a sustained attack on the religious leaders of the day. There are many religions that claim to know what lies beyond the grave. The problem is, no one has demonstrated authority over the grave or confirmed their belief of what happens after death. Only Jesus demonstrated authority over death. All men have died, but Jesus is alive.
Again the ideas presented in the preceding statement arise from people going to the Scripture to prove what they have already decided to believe rather than going to the Scripture to find out what it actually says. God has promised us salvation should we follow Jesus but there isn’t a single instance of Him promising “long healthy, loving and prosperous lives free from all discord and pain”. (See The Prosperity Doctrine)
In the endeavor to teach these ideas we are not exclusive to the christian scriptures, rather looking to all the great teachings, religions and philosophies of the world before and after, Jesus, which support the basic tenet of his wisdom and the power of the indwelling presence God within mankind. (5)
Of course New Thought is not exclusive to the Christian Scriptures. It would be way too uncomfortable to do so. Therefore the entire doctrine has been gleaned from a wide variety of sources with little heed to the truth. Unfortunately an unchanging God had quite a bit to say about philosophy and other religions. Other religions are equated with ‘idol worship’ and the worship of false gods, both of which are abhorred by Him.
“Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ”. (Colossians 2:8.)
“Thou shalt not bow down to their gods, nor serve them, nor do after their works: but thou shalt utterly overthrow them, and quite break down their images”. (Exodus 23:24 )
“And I will destroy your high places, and cut down your images, and cast your carcases upon the carcases of your idols, and my soul shall abhor you”. (Leviticus 26:30)
“Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the people which are round about you;” (Deuteronomy 6:14 )
“Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? even so will I do likewise”. (Deuteronomy 12:30)
“For they served idols, whereof the LORD had said unto them, Ye shall not do this thing”. (2Kings 17:12)
“For all the gods of the people are idols: but the LORD made the heavens” (1 Chronicles 16:26).
“They shall be ashamed, and also confounded, all of them: they shall go to confusion together that are makers of idols”. (Isaiah 45:16)
“And they that escape of you shall remember me among the nations whither they shall be carried captives, because I am broken with their whorish heart, which hath departed from me, and with their eyes, which go a whoring after their idols: and they shall lothe themselves for the evils which they have committed in all their abominations”. (Ezekiel 6:9)
“Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them?” (Ezekiel 14:3)
“Because they despised my judgments, and walked not in my statutes, but polluted my sabbaths: for their heart went after their idols”. (Ezekiel 20:16)
“I will do these things unto thee, because thou hast gone a whoring after the heathen, and because thou art polluted with their idols. (Revelation 9:20)
And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk” (Ezekiel 23:30)
“We believe that the Kingdom of Heaven is within man and that we experience this Kingdom to the degree that we become conscious of it... We believe the ultimate goal of life to be a complete emancipation from all discord of every nature, and that this goal is sure to be attained by all life, and that the highest God and the innermost God is one God... We believe that God is personal to all who feel this Indwelling Presence... We believe in the direct revelation fo* Truth through the intuitive and spiritual nature of man, and that any man may become a revealer of Truth who lives in close contact with the Indwelling God... (*Misspelling on their site). (7)
The kingdom of heaven, New Thoughters would have you believe, doesn’t really exist other than in the thoughts and minds of those who choose to be conscious of it within themselves. A statement that is exactly what it sounds like, circular talking with no real justification for anything other than self-gratification. According to this philosophy the kingdom of heaven is accessible to a drug addict when he/she is on a high, to Islamic terrorists while killing innocent victims in the firm belief that they are fulfilling the precepts of Jihad or to Adolph Hitler who firmly believe it was necessary to exterminate every Jew off the face of the earth and attempted to do just that. The kingdom of heaven is hence not a place but is ‘bliss’. Much of mankind’s ‘bliss’ is totally out of tune with the Laws of God and would make the world a miserable place for the rest of humanity. To claim that heaven is within possible reach of people like Charles Manson or Ted Bundy is not only ridiculous, it is a slap in the fact to a good, sinless and loving God.
So instead of spinning philosophical and vague theories about the existence of heaven within mans conscious, lets take a look at what the Bible says about the Kingdom of Heaven.
According to the Bible …
God (not man) made heaven, all the hosts of heaven, all of earth and He alone preserves them.
“Thou, even thou, art LORD alone; thou hast made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth, and all things that are therein, the seas, and all that is therein, and thou preservest them all; and the host of heaven worshippeth thee.” (Nehemiah 9:6)
Heaven is God’s holy temple and His throne is also there. God sits on His throne, in heaven, and looks down upon the men of earth.
“The LORD is in his holy temple, the LORD's throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.” (Psalms 11:4)
“The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God”. (Psalms 14:2)
God and God alone knows the measurements of heaven, for He is the one who created it and meted it out.
“Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?” (Isaiah 40:12)
Heaven contains hosts that cannot be numbered
“As the host of heaven cannot be numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured: so will I multiply the seed of David my servant, and the Levites that minister unto me”. (Jeremiah 33:22)
Heaven has windows, which God can open and pour out stores in abundance so that mankind might be blessed for his tithe.
“ Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it”. (Malachi 3:10)
Heaven is where those who are persecuted for Jesus sake will receive their reward. It is also the place where Jesus tells us to store up our rewards and treasures.
“Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you”. (Matthew 5:12)
“But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal” (Matthew 6:20)
And finally, possibly the most interesting, keeping in mind that New Thoughter believe that heaven is only a state of mind …
“And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven”. (2Kings 2:11)
Elijah was taken up on a chariot of fire and a whirlwind into heaven. A feat that would be impossible if indeed we are to believe that heaven exists only in the thoughts of man.
Incidentally not everyone inherits this kingdom..
“For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God”. (Ephesians 5:5)
“Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption”. (1Corinthians 15:50)
“Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God”. (John 3:5)
Also See Life in The Land of The Promise Made to Abraham
We believe in the direct revelation of Truth through the intuitive and spiritual nature of man
Actually the Holy Spirit guides us into all truth… Not the spiritual nature of man. Nor is it true that the world at large receives the Holy Spirit.
“Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come”. (John 16:13)
“Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you”. (John 14:17)
The Following quotes are from htttp://www.upchurch.org/What_we_teach.htm. (Della Reese, who has been showcased as a Christian Minister, is a co-leader of the organization called Upchurch, See related article Touched by an Angel.
“We believe that we can bring this Kingdom forth by practicing the Universal Spiritual Principles handed down through the ages and taught by our Wayshower, Jesus Christ”.
Jesus definitely showed the way but the way He showed was Himself. He said He was the way.
“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me”. John 14:6.
The Divinity of Man: Who and what man is and his relationship to God ...Man is made in the image-likeness of God.
A reading of the Bible will show that man is made in the image of God, but is not in any sense of the word divine. Jeremiah 17:9 describes the heart of man as “desperately wicked”. Luke 19:10 describes mankind as “lost”. Romans 5:8 describes humanity as “sinners”. We are described as forgiven, saved, justified, sanctified, regenerated, children of God, sons of God, however the title of deity/divinity has never been assigned to man. We are a creature. Isaiah chapter 6, Romans 14:1, Philippians 2:10, John 1:1, and Colossians 2:15-19 will give an overview of who is who in the Divinity and Deity realm. (The Christian Arsenal).
The Power and Value of Thought: It is through thinking that man forms that which he has in his life. *scriptual Ref.; Proverbs 23:7
Please read Proverbs 23:7 in the Bible and you will see that it has nothing to do with positive thinking but refers to the attitude of the heart and what a man is. (Misspelling on their site)
Man's Responsibility as a Son of GOD:
Right Reactions *scriptual Ref.; Luke 12:32 (*Misspelling on their site)
The points directly above have been borrowed from Buddhism’s Eight-fold Path. Luke 12:32 says “Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” This has nothing to do with ‘man’s responsibility as a Son of God’.
In New Thought, the Bible is the primary textbook for life. We use a metaphysical approach to the Bible literature and understand that the stories and events have something to say about man's developing awareness of his relationship to God and what it means to open ourselves up to God's activity.
The 66 books of the Bible are one in message, principle and aim.... The mortality and sinfulness of man, the promise of a Saviour, the need for sacrifice and faith, the place of God's chosen people Israel in the Divine plan, and the coming Kingdom of God. It is the revelation of the purpose of God with the earth and has a single Gospel of salvation from Genesis to Revelation. It says NOTHING about “man's developing awareness of his relationship to God” nor “what it means to open ourselves up to God's activity”.
We believe that the time has come to make available to all men everywhere a teaching that will enable them to provide for themselves by learning to release the Divine potential within them….. We believe in our oneness with God and with all men everywhere
It is all very well to proudly declare our ‘oneness with God’. Unfortunately God Himself forcefully repudiates this in Isaiah 59:2
"But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear".
However we can be reconciled to God through the sacrifice of Jesus
What seems clear is that with or without capital letters, we have entered a promising new age, and New Thought will remain an important and distinguishable part of it. (8)
What precisely is promising about this age is beyond me…. Just look around, read the newspapers then read Isaiah who describes the earth "empty and wasted" (Isaiah 24:1). Revelation which tells us of an "hour of trial" which shall come upon the whole world to test those who dwell on the earth (Revelation 3:10). The Lord Jesus, in the gospel of Matthew, warns us of a "great tribulation" which shall threaten the survival of all life on earth (Matthew 24:21,22). The apostle Paul speaks of sudden destruction that shall come just when men are saying "peace and safety" (1 Thessalonians 5:3).
Many have tried to defuse the book of Revelation by turning it into a giant parable in which nothing can be definitely known except that in the end Christ will triumph and all will be well. But such an interpretation makes all the details of the visions meaningless. Some have dared to suggest that John's visions may have been more literal than most have supposed. This more literalistic interpretation just might make sense if John was seeing the terrible results of a nuclear holocaust just before Christ's coming to claim planet earth. [See The Wrath of God]
Salvation lies in the realization of oneness with the impersonal life force
Rhetoric is all very well but New Thought doesn’t answer some very basic questions. It neglects to enlighten us as to what kinds of ‘salvation’ it is talking about, what we are ‘saved’ from? What happens after we are saved, and where we go after we die.
No matter how well wrapped Satan’s presents are, no matter how warm and fuzzy the camouflage, eventually the bottom line always has to be the denial of salvation through Jesus and Jesus alone. New Thought, while denying that it has any particular religious beliefs and claiming to use the Bible as a primary textbook, goes exactly the same route as every other heretical cultic teaching that has tried to undermine the very foundations of the Church for centuries. The moment a doctrine or a way of life teaching begins to deny (directly or indirectly) the saving sacrifice of Jesus, it should be immediately and categorically denounced as having nothing at all in common with Christianity. The Bible is very clear …
Act 4:10-12 ‘Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone, which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.’ (Emphasis Added) (See The Heart Of The Matter)
John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
New Thought is not new; it follows the same philosophies and fabrications that Satan has used to try and shake the foundations of the Church since the very dawn of the faith. It seeks to show a freedom of choice in religion, undermine the importance of the church, disprove the existence and very real personage of Lucifer, make heaven a “state of mind”, demonstrate God as being subject to our thoughts and finally (as always) remove any relevance to salvation from the death and resurrection of Christ. To give itself credence it uses the scriptures and then when confronted with the ever-revealing words of those same Scriptures it will deny or claim misinterpretation. It will dance around the obvious, spin its way out of the corners of truth and confuse its disciples to the point where even they are not exactly sure of what the philosophy believes. The sad thing however is the human tendency to blindly follow the next “new” thing and to accept unquestioningly that which they cannot explain or understand. And so New Thought will continue to grow, until the Lord raises warriors to fight it and then like the groaning of the prophets of Baal, the teachings of these New Thoughters will leave the altar lacking of fire and bare of Spirit.
Some New Thought contemporary authors.
Wayne Dyer, Ram Dass, Caroline Myss, Suze Orman, Thomas Moore, John Gray, Stephen Covey, Gabrielle Roth, Gary Zukav, Julia Cameron, Marianne Williamson, Fritjof Capra, Louise Hay, Larry Dossey, Bernie Siegel, Iyanla VanZant, Christiane Northrop, Neale Donald Walsh, Alan Cohen, Jerry Jampolsky, Don Miguel Ruiz, Elisabet Sahtouris.
(New Thought: A Practical American Spirituality by C. Alan Anderson and Deborah G. Whitehouse. Chapter 1).
2000-2002 Religious Science Baltimore. www.rsibaltimore.com
New Thought Center Of Religious Science. San Diego CA. www.newthoughtcenter.org ‘What We Believe’
Center for Spiritual Awakening. www.newthoughtcsa.org.
Center for Spiritual Awakening. www.newthoughtcsa.org. The ‘What We Believe’ Page..
www.beliefnet.com (What New Thought Practitioners Believe)
Originally written by Ernest Holmes as "What I Believe," and published in the first issue of Science of Mind Magazine, October 1927. (From www.cityofangelschurch.com)
(New Thought: A Practical American Spirituality by C. Alan Anderson and Deborah G. Whitehouse. Chapter 5 "New Thought and New Age,").