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Section 10A .. The Contemporary Church /
Shepherds or Wolves

 

003white  Section 10A   The Contemporary Church

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Shepherds or Wolves

Carol Brooks

 But Evil Men and Impostors Shall Wax Worse And Worse, Deceiving And Being Deceived.
2 Timothy 3:13.


Introduction
The Christian world today is awash with books by authors who, collectively, present a plethora of viewpoints, all under the banner of 'Christianity'. A considerable number become very popular best sellers. Unfortunately however, popularity, is absolutely no of indication of Biblical accuracy, or spiritual reliability. Many of these authors of these books, profess to be innovative or progressive Christian leaders, who claim to be rethinking Christianity. Others hide behind titles such as "motivational speakers" or 'management experts' who's aim is to cultivate or develop leaders. The truth is that many of these books not only flatly contradict the Scriptures, but subtly introduce New Age concepts, ideas and teachings. Rank heresy is often delivered well sprinkled with Biblical verses, carefully chosen to make it appear that that the teaching is Biblical. These authors/speakers/leaders are not Christians, but wolves in sheep's clothing who do little but lead people away from salvation and life.

Sadly, a very gullible Christian community rarely, if ever, bothers to take into consideration 'the whole counsel of God' and thoroughly investigate other passages in Scripture that may disagree with, or even completely contradict what is being claimed. Instead, as long as it sounds reasonable, and said spiritual leader/pastor/author can pull out a few ‘proof texts’ that appear to substantiate their theories, the hearer/reader remains perfectly content. The end result being, that half baked, dangerous, ideas become not only accepted and embraced, but spread like a particularly deadly virus.

Also See

Why Christians Are Deceived

 The Four Most Common Mistakes Made by Christians

How the Bible instructs us to deal with those who practice and teach untruths.

 

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Organizations

TBN
 Under the guise of Christianity, TBN is probably the largest promoter of heresy today.

Lifestyles of The Tele-Evangelists
Capitalizing on Christianity has proved to be far more lucrative than starting a new religion.

The Emerging Church
The emerging church is a faith movement that questions many of the beliefs of traditional Christianity, while radically redoing centuries-old worship practices.


 

Individuals

Brian McLaren... What Christianity Has Come To
Brian McLaren, founding pastor of Cedar Ridge Community Church in Spencerville, Maryland was listed by Time magazine as one of American's 25 most influential evangelicals. He is a prominent Christian pastor, author, and speaker, who has assisted in the development of several new churches, a popular conference speaker, and a frequent guest on television, radio, and news media programs. His work has been covered in Christianity Today, Christian Century, the Washington Post, Huffington Post etc. Yet, he teaches that Christians have been "brainwashed" to read Genesis through Greco-Roman bifocals, but "these stories aren't intended to be taken literally". Salvation emphatically does not automatically mean "save from hell" and “eternal life” means does not mean life without end. God's “will” actually means the “dream” God has for this world.  The message of Jesus was good news- not just for Christians, but also for people of other religions, including New Agers, agnostics, and atheists (In other words, unbelievers and pagans can be saved without explicit faith in Christ). The book of Revelation was not written about the (then) distant future, but was the first century way of talking about the challenges faced by the early church. ie. The Roman Empire. Jesus will not physically return to earth.

Rick Warren and The Purpose Driven Life
Judging by how many copies it sold, The Purpose Driven Life was immensely popular. However, after more than a decade, I presumed that the church must have long moved on to it's next fad, and The Purpose Driven Life was more of a distant memory than an ongoing affair therefore, needed no time wasted on it. I couldn't have been more wrong. It was recently brought to my attention that, in January 2011, Thomas Nelson announced that Rick Warren's The Purpose-Driven Life held 16th place on their list of the 100 Best-selling Christian Books. Besides which The Purpose Driven Life is being re-purposed for a whole new generation, with a revised and expanded version due out the fall of 2012, based on what Warren says he has learned over the last ten years. Additionally, an all-new 6 session video & workbook teaching is designed to "unite and ignite small groups" in church". Although Rick Warren apparently believes that "The Purpose Driven paradigm is the Intel chip for the 21st century church and the Windows system of the 21st century church", it has much going against it. The non believer will be given little or no information as to how he, or she, can be included in the coming kingdom, and will certainly not be told anything about the necessity of repentance from sin and holiness. The reader, both Christian and non-Christian alike, will be introduced to a wide variety of, potentially, very destructive people, ideas, and practices. And since they have been told, in no uncertain terms, that the most important thing is “unity”, they will never hear a word about discerning between true and false teachings, nor how the Bible instructs them to deal with those who practice and teach untruths. Note: The subjects mentioned above can be found at these links... Sin, Repentance, Salvation, Holiness,


Ken Blanchard
There is a wealth of evidence that shows that Ken Blanchard sits on the New Age/mystical/contemplative bandwagon, has no trouble associating himself with Napoleon Hill’s “unseen watchers” and few, if any, qualms about borrowing from Buddhism and New Age ‘spirituality’. Jon Gordon’s popular book The Energy Bus largely flowed from the occult work.. The Secret. Yet, the foreword was written by Blanchard

C. Peter Wagner
Peter Wagner is a radical Pentecostal/Charismatic who came from the academic halls of Fuller Theological Seminary and has strategically placed himself into the middle of an international network of "Christian" activities to help implement, organize and dominate a Global Church within the coming New World Order. If this sounds disturbingly New Age, then your feelings are correct.

So what specifically is Wagner doing? As part of his networking plan, he recently founded the idea of the "New Apostolic Reformation" where apostles and prophets are rising up to take control of the Church. Dr. Wagner recently proclaimed himself "presiding apostle" of a coalition of 200 "true" apostles by forming the "International Coalition of Apostles." Their mandate, of course, is to build and usher in the Kingdom of God. Wagner and his apostolic brethren purport to speak for our Lord and they claim to hold the greatest authority over the direction of the Church and the lives of God's people.

Laurie Beth Jones
Thousands of Christians from all over the world wax enthusiastic about her books, either oblivious to, or completely unconcerned that, on page after page, they blatantly espouse a mixture of skewed Christianity and New Age spirituality. Jones' books, while claiming to be based on Jesus' leadership approach, are a study in misconceptions, misinterpretation, and sheer baloney. In fact in bending over backwards to find examples from Jesus' life and teachings that fit the leadership qualities and practices that she wanted to write about, Jones has twisted the Scriptures out of all recognition. Yet, her many books are prime examples of the swill thousands of Christians are swallowing.. hook, line and sinker... without one ounce of discernment whatsoever.

 

Also See

Word Of Faith
I have heard it said.. If the New Age movement is the greatest threat to evangelical Christianity from without, the Word-Faith/Positive Confession movement is its greatest threat from within. I beg to differ. The Word of Faith movement IS the New Age movement... with a few Christian terms and concepts sprinkled in for to keep it believable. Nor is the extent of the controversy an honest doctrinal difference among orthodox believers, but a confrontation between the gospel preached by the Lord Jesus Christ and another gospel. Word-Faith is also applied to finances and other forms of material gain (the Prosperity Doctrine) and to Divine Healing. God's will is that all believers are healthy (and financially prosperous), and we can therefore "claim" or appropriate our healing

It is deeply alarming that most Christians seem to be blissfully unaware of the fact that the principles of the Word-Faith movement being trumpeted from pulpits across the land, not only stems from the same occult sources as the spiritual movement known as New Thought, but uses exactly the same terminology and techniques. And no wonder..  Christian Science, New Thought, Unity School of Christianity and the Word-Faith movement all have common origins. The non-believing world claims that there are spiritual “laws” which people can learn to use on their behalf, however the Word Faith group, claiming to be Christian, have to somehow “Christianize” the concepts and add God into the mixture. But since the Biblical God does not fit this mold, they completely reinvent Him in an image that conforms to their beliefs, teaching that the power of faith is a force… one that can even twist God's arm. [Section]


Slain In The Spirit

The practice of being ‘Slain In The Spirit’ has terrifying parallels with Kundalini, conceptualized in Hinduism as a coiled up serpent... a concentrated form of prana or life force, lying dormant in our bodies. The ‘awakening’ of the Kundalini is often brought about by a guru conferring the spiritual "power" or awakening, often by means of a touch to the forehead. Not only are the methods of transmissions the same, but the resulting physical manifestations are virtually indistinguishable. How then can this practice be Christian... especially since Holy Canon is void of any accounts, testimonies, experiences or doctrines like ‘Slain In The Spirit’. In fact, when people have fallen in the Biblical accounts, it is the sinners who fell backwards.

The Anointing
It would be difficult to find a charismatic/evangelical service/program/tract/book that is not liberally sprinkled with the word 'Anointed, which has become arguably the most overused, overworked, misunderstood, misinterpreted term in the Pentecostal and Charismatic arenas. There is a international anthem among an elite class of Charismatic celebrities today. It’s a stern warning repeatedly directed at their critics with a residual effect upon their devotees. It’s the frequent and methodical strategy that they recite against anyone who opposes their unscriptural doctrine and practice. It’s a charge of “blasphemy of the Holy Spirit” and “touch not the Lord’s anointed.” What does the Bible mean when it says not to touch God’s anointed? [Section]

False Prophecy
The Bible tells us that if a prophet presumes to speak a word in God’s name, which God has not commanded him to speak, that prophet shall die... That false prophets are ferocious wolves in sheep’s clothing. (Matthew 7:15) Yet false prophets abound and thrive in the Christian world.

 Index To The Contemporary Church

www.inplainsite.org