Tag Archives: false teachers

No wonder men are confused…

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Where Did the Emergent Church ‘Emerge’ From?

The false teachings exposed by Dave Fiorazo below are not only being taught in churches in America but has reached global scale by international Christian missions such as Ravi Zacharia International Ministries (RZIM), Youth for Christ, YWAM and many other global missions. Having been with YWAM myself for a few years, I can testify that such teachings are rampantly taught in its schools to undiscerning youth!

 

By: Dave Fiorazo on Good Fight Ministries

WARNING: The author of this article has determined that ignoring the following information may be hazardous to your spiritual health, and that choosing to do nothing with this knowledge may grieve the Holy Spirit and cause regret; but taking action may strengthen your faith. “Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints. For certain men whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.” (Jude 1:3-4)

The emerging church is a movement of the late 20th and early 21st century that crosses a number of theological boundaries: participants can be described as evangelical, post-evangelical, liberal or post-liberal, reformed, neo-charismatic, and post-charismatic. They seek to live their faith in what they believe to be a”Postmodern” society. It is a rapidly growing network of individual believers and churches who would prefer to be understood as a conversation or a friendship rather than an organization. What those involved mostly agree on is their disdain and disillusionment with the organized and institutional church. The emergent church favors the use of simple story and narrative. Members of the movement often place a high value on good works or social activism. The hallmark of the emergent church is the new age aspect including the practice of contemplative monastic meditation and prayers. While some emphasize eternal salvation, many in the emerging church emphasize the here and now. Much of its doctrine rejects systematic Christian theology, the integrity of Scripture, and gospel exclusivity. They don’t believe Christianity is the true religion and they promote homosexuality. They call for diversity, tolerance and camaraderie among all religions, and they modify and expand their teachings. It is a war against the Truth.

At an emergent church workshop in San Diego, Tony Jones said, “This is about our belief that theology changes. The message of the gospel changes. It’s not just the method that changes.” What? I submit to you that Jesus never changed his message to fit the times. Books, sermons and articles have been and will be written about the emergent church, and I’ve come to realize that too many believers are at times uninterested, uninformed, or just plain apathetic about the Bible and understanding the times we live in. There’s plenty of information out there if you’re interested in doing the research. You may even know their names. They are best-selling authors in Christian stores, speakers at our music festivals, and well-known leaders in Christian circles. Please read the following quotes from emergent church leaders, keeping the following verses in mind:

“The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.” 1 Timothy 4:1

“Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them.” Acts 20:30

Going to heaven is like going to Philadelphia… There are many ways…It doesn’t make any difference how we go there. We all end up in the same place.” 1a

“On the other hand, we are hard-pressed to find any biblical basis for condemning deep love commitments between homosexual Christians as long as those commitments are not expressed in sexual intercourse.” 1b

“But the overwhelming population of the gay community that love Jesus, that go to church, that are deeply committed in spiritual things, try to change and can’t change…” 1c

“…we want to see God at work converting society, converting the systems, so that there aren’t the racist overtones, the economic injustices, the polluting of the atmosphere.” 1d

“I learn about Jesus from other religions. They speak to me about Christ, as well.”1e

“I’m not convinced that Jesus only lives in Christians.” 1f

(Tony Campolo is an author, professor of Sociology at Eastern College, former spiritual counselor to President Bill Clinton, and a leader of the movement called “Red Letter Christians”.)

***

“I don’t believe making disciples must equal making adherents to the Christian religion. It may be advisable in many (not all!) circumstances to help people become followers of Jesus and remain within their Buddhist, Hindu or Jewish contexts…” 2a

“Yes, I find a character named God who sends a flood that destroys all humanity except Noah’s family, but that’s almost trivial compared to a deity who tortures the greater part of humanity forever in infinite eternal conscious torment, three words that need to be read slowly and thoughtfully to feel their full import.” 2b

“For many Christians, their faith is primarily about what happens to people after they die. That distracts them from seeking justice and living in a compassionate way while we’re still alive in this life. We need to go back and take another look at Jesus’ teachings about hell. For so many people, the conventional teaching about hell makes God seem vicious. That’s not something we should let stand.” 2c

“In this light, a god who mandates an intentional supernatural disaster leading to unparalleled genocide is hardly worthy of belief, much less worship. How can you ask your children…to honor a deity so uncreative, over reactive, and utterly capricious regarding life?” 2d

(Brian McLaren is the founding pastor of Cedar Ridge Community Church in Spencerville, MD, he serves as a board chair for Sojourners, an emergent church leader and a founding member of Red Letter Christians.)

***

“I don’t think that abortion is the moral equivalent issue to slavery…I think poverty is the new slavery. Poverty and global inequality are the fundamental moral issues of our time. That’s my judgment.” 3a

“Christianity will be impotent to lead a conversation on sexuality and gender if we do not bodily integrate our current understandings of humanity with our theology. This will require us to not only draw new conclusions about sexuality but will force us to consider new ways of being sexual.” 3b

“As more Christians become influenced by liberation theology, finding themselves increasingly rejecting the values of institutions of capitalism, they will also be drawn to the Marxist analysis and praxis that is so central to the social justice movement.” 3c

(Jim Wallis is a writer and political activist, best known as the founder and editor of Sojourners’ Magazine, for which he admitted to accepting money from George Soros, who has financed groups supporting abortion and atheism; Wallis has been arrested 22 times for acts of civil disobedience, and he serves as a spiritual adviser to President Obama.)

***

What if tomorrow someone digs up definitive proof that Jesus had a real, earthly, biological father named Larry, and archeologists find Larry’s tomb and do DNA samples and prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the virgin birth was just a bit of mythologizing the Gospel writers threw in to appeal to the followers of the Mithra and Dionysian religious cults that were hugely popular at the time of Jesus, whose gods had virgin births? …Could you still be a Christian? Is the way of Jesus still the best possible way to live?” 4a
*This writer is concerned that Rob had his bell rung one too many times
.

(Rob Bell is the founding pastor of Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, MI, and a popular icon in the emergent church movement.)

Related information from GFM:
Rob Bell: Populating Hell (Article)
Rob Bell: Welcome to Hell (Audio Resource)

***

“In any case, I now believe that GLBTQ [Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Queer] can live lives in accord with Biblical Christianity (at least as much as any of us can!) and that their monogamy can and should be sanctioned and blessed by church and state.” 5a

“I think the Bible is a f***ing scary book (pardon my French, but that’s the only way I know how to convey how strongly I feel about this).” 5b

“Some people today may find it compelling that some Great Cosmic Transaction took place on that day 1,980 years ago, that God’s wrath burned against his son instead of me. I find that version of atonement theory neither intellectually compelling, spiritually compelling, nor in keeping with the biblical narrative.” 5c

(Tony Jones is an author and a leader in the emergent church movement, blogger, and social commentator)

***

“There are extremists, both Muslim and Christian, who kill in the name of their gods.” 6a

“So for those of us who have nearly given up the church, may we take comfort in the words of St. Augustine: ‘The Church is a whore, but she’s my mother.’ She is a mess and has many illegitimate children. But she is also our momma…” 6b

(Shane Claiborne is an author, the co-founder of The Potter Street Community – formerly The Simple Way, a graduate of Eastern University and is a part of The Alternative Seminary in Philadelphia, PA. Claiborne is featured in the documentary “The Ordinary Radicals” and wrote the foreword to Ben Lowe’s “Green Revolution: Coming Together to Care for Creation.”)

How did we get to the point where some, if not all, of these teachings have blended in with truth and sound doctrine, and are accepted by many churches and ministries? Make no mistake. I’d need to write an entire book to completely answer that question. False teachers have been around since the early church days. The major issue with the emergent church is that it rejects the authority of the word of God. These teachings were not accepted by evangelical Christians overnight. This is 2010. We can trace the advancement of the emergent church to the late 80’s and 90’s, when people began talking about how to modernize and re-create church to be more attractive to the unchurched. But going back to the hippy flower-power days of the 1960’s, the new fad was all about peace, love, free sex, and rebelling against authority. Absolute truth and Biblical standards were questioned and labeled as too rigid, leading some to moral relativism. Moral Relativism is an ethical judgment. It is the claim that no ethical system is better than another, and rests on the belief that values are subjective.

Some churches responded to the 60’s rebellion by trying to convert as many as possible and accepted them as they were. ‘Come as you are’ was the new slogan. Jesus does meet people right where they are, but there’s an important distinction: He loves people too much to leave them that way, and unlike the emergent church, His message never changes! He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. (Heb. 13:8) Many churches began watering down the true gospel in an effort to lure potential new members and not offend unbelievers. Some Pastors and church leaders simply wanted to increase their market share, so to speak. The seeker-friendly or seeker-sensitive movement began to grow and a skim milk diet replaced the meat of God’s word. More young people began attending church but there was little follow-up or discipleship training, and lots of baby Christians went back out into the world with little conviction to change.

The 1970’s brought us the development of the Christian music industry. Most of the industry pioneers were authentic, God-fearing, and ministry-minded, but I wonder if they would approve of Christian music as a whole today? In some cases, bands are more into the entertainment aspect than building up the body of Christ. Biblical truth was becoming irrelevant to young Christians and grace was way over-emphasized. One might argue that we shouldn’t judge others because it is divisive. In Luke 12:51, Jesus said that he did not come to bring peace but division. He never backed down when it came to facing hypocritical religious leaders. If you’re a mature Christian, you too need to be careful. The Apostle Paul writes, “You were running a good race. Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth? That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you. A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.” (Gal. 5:7-9) Many churches in America now have beautiful buildings, coffee shops, bookstores, great music and sound systems, state of the art lighting, and good drama or video presentations, but they seem to put more of an emphasis on entertaining the flock than on feeding them God’s word. Well, at least the young people are happy.

The 80’s rolled around and a few years after I gave my life to Christ, I heard Tony Campolo speak in California. I remember laughing a lot because he’s a great entertainer. He knows how to reach both young and old. His presentation has never been a concern; his theology definitely is. To fully understand the background and motives of some of the emergent church guru’s, you’d need to know more about Liberation theology, Marxism, Saul Alinsky, Sojourners Magazine, George Soros, Red Letter Christians, Collective Salvation, and the Students for a Democratic Society. Most young people like to take action for a cause, and some of these works-based teachings call for organizing, social or environmental action. This is a clever way to lure those who are not as mature in the faith.

In 1995 Jim Wallis founded ‘Call to Renewal’ for the purposes of advocating for leftist economic agendas such as tax hikes and wealth redistribution to promote social justice. He himself stated, “That’s what the gospel is all about.” In 2005, Democratic Senators (including Harry Reid) met with Wallis to devise clever ways to use religious language to pull evangelical voters away from Republicans. According to TraditionalValues.org, Wallis was hired to fool Americans into believing secular liberals had found “religion” in part by sprinkling references to God and faith into their speeches. Just this year, Wallis has criticized America’s heritage, capitalism, conservative Christians, and jumped on the race card express saying, “would there even be a Tea Party if the president of the United States weren’t the first black man to occupy that office?”

The “social gospel” and the social justice message is an apostasy. Apostasy means a departure from the faith or one who denies the fundamental doctrines concerning the person and work of Jesus Christ. Social justice teachings have branched off from the emergent church. We can no longer deny the fact that humanism, liberalism and the secular-progressive movement are alive and well in the Church, just as it has been for years in government, education, media, and the entertainment industry. Last month, Jim Wallis brought his social justice message to a Christian festival in Wisconsin called Lifest. (Wallis’ Sojourners puts more emphasis on the environment and poverty than on salvation and sin.) Because there were many great bands and speakers there, I’ve heard a few people try to make an argument in favor of Wallis, with the over-used analogy, “don’t throw out the baby with the bath water.” So, if only a few people hear a false gospel, that’s ok? “Let’s just agree to disagree.” Sorry, that method may be fine when dealing with petty arguments between friends or family. But when it comes to false doctrines, we can’t simply just look the other way. I heard the story of a woman who told her daughters that they no longer could attend Lifest because of Wallis. Weeks before, she and her husband wanted their young daughters to remember the dangers of false teachers, so they made brownies together. After all of the ingredients were added, she told them there was one more ingredient to add. The girls were shocked when their Mom added a small piece of dog poop to the batter! She told them not to worry and that they might not even taste it. Admittedly, this was a disgustingly effective lesson I bet they’ll never forget! Jesus warned His disciples to avoid the teachings (yeast) of the Pharisees, but He didn’t have a brownie recipe handy for visual effects.

According to Time Magazine (so take this with a grain of salt), Brian McLaren is one of the 25 most influential people in the evangelical church. This makes me believe our culture is confused about what ‘evangelical’ means. It is a serious issue because his teachings seem to reject the sacrifice of Jesus Christ and the work on the cross, and dilutes what the Bible says about Heaven and eternal life. McLaren is changing Biblical doctrine to fit his own ‘We Are the World’ type of theology, which stomps out the reality of Hell and the fact that Jesus became our substitute on the cross in order to redeem us. He doubts the reliability of the Bible and I’m confused as to why he is not more of a red flag to Christians. Please read for yourself what the Apostle Paul wrote in Galatians 1:8 about those who preach another Gospel.

Many of today’s youth have been raised in a culture (and sadly in some churches) where feelings and sensitivity matter but sound doctrine and the truth of God’s word aren’t a priority. This invites the justification of sinful behaviors and tolerance for sin. Our culture has redefined the word ‘tolerance’ to mean love, unconditional grace, warm fuzzies, and the acceptance of not only the sinner but the sin as well. When the Holy Spirit isn’t invited, by the preaching of Scripture, to come in and work in our hearts, there can be no conviction. Without revelation of sin and conviction, there can be no repentance leading to forgiveness. We shouldn’t be surprised that many young Christians have their spiritual foundations built on the sand. The Lord Jesus Christ said something very serious about those who cause little ones to stumble. He said in Luke 17:2 that it would be better that a millstone would be tied around the neck of the one who caused them to sin. These guys have no business teaching Christian theology and it’s amazing that so many ‘believing’ consumers buy into their feel-good, motivational doctrine. Part of their gospel is one of a social worker putting their faith in man (humanism) and government.

Dr. Walter Martin, founder of the Christian Research Institute, sternly warned about liberal theology and the emergent church saying, “It is a cult because it follows every outlined structure of cultism; its own revelations; its own gurus, and its denial—systematically—of all sound systematic Christian theology. It is a cult because it passes its leadership on to the next group that takes over—either modifying, expanding or contracting—the same heresies; dressing them up in different language, and passing them on…it denies the authority of Scripture, it ruins its own theology. And it ends in immorality; because the only way you could have gotten to this homosexual, morally relativistic, garbage—which is today in our denominational structures—is if the leadership of those denominations denied the authority of the Scriptures and Jesus Christ as Lord…Test all things; make sure of what is true (see 1 Thessalonians 5:21). I’m not being harsh; I’m not being judgmental. I am being thoroughly, consistently, Christian; in the light of historic theology, and the holy Bible.”

So what should we do? Since not enough Christians know the dangers and the extent of the emergent church movement and their radical teachings, we need to promote awareness of these deceptions. We need to dig deeper in to the Word of God than ever before and know it so well that if we hear a counterfeit message, we’ll recognize it immediately! We need to talk to our Pastors and Christian friends. You have a choice to make and I encourage you to get out of your comfort zone and take a stand for Christ. The spiritual battle rages all around us and the enemy is on our doorstep. Satan has been at work at a church near you spreading his deceptions. The good news is that we are on to his schemes. Mature believers know that the emergent church teachings are contrary to the gospel of Christ. So suit up in the full armor of God and pray for discernment. Revelation 3:11 says, “Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown.” Light dispels the darkness, so share the truth, stand your ground, and shine your light!

Dave Fiorazo is an evangelical Christian, actor, blogger and on-air radio personality at Q90 90.1FM WORQ in De Pere, WI.

References:
1a CarpeDiem: Seize the Day, 1994 page 85;
1b “20 Hot Potatoes Christians Are Afraid To Touch” page 117;
1c Beliefnet.com/faith/Christianity 08/2004;
1d MSNBC 2008 interview;
1e MSNBC 2008 interview;
1f Charlie Rose show 1/24/97

2a A Generous Orthodoxy, page 260;
2b A New Kind of Christianity, 98;
2c Site no longer available;
2d A New Kind of Christianity,109;

3a ChristianityToday.com 5/9/2008;
3b ChristianityToday.com 5/9/2008;
3c Worldview Weekend.com 8/3/2010 #1597;

4a Velvet Elvis pp. 26-27;

5a Beliefnet.com 11/19/08 blog;
5b The church and postmodern culture: conversation 3-26-07;
5c Beliefnet.com ‘Why Jesus Died’ 4/09;

6a From the book “Irresistible Revolution” by Shane Claiborne
6b From the book “Irresistible Revolution” by Shane Claiborne
6c From the book “Irresistible Revolution” by Shane Claiborne


A Nation defeated by Idolatry

Two major events have taken place in the US recently: legalization of gay marriages in New York and Christians welcoming Muslims into the house of God to hold interfaith services. Along with these two events, tree-huggers are taking extreme measures to worship the created than the Creator. Scientists are busy searching for extraterrestial life in order to have contact with them and literally worship them; they believe that aliens will solve the problems of this world. The list could go on but the spiritual downfall of the nation cannot be more evident. Homosexuality is the result of blatant disregard to the holy God, the Creator of the universe (read carefully) :

22 “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

 23And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.

 24Wherefore (for which reason) God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:

 25Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

 26For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

 27And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.” – Romans 1, The KJV Bible

The Bible clearly defines the reason behind men lusting after men and women lusting after women: idolatry. When the created is being worship, godly morals, godly fear and godly reverence has no place in such worshippers. God gives up the wicked to exchange unnatural relationship with each other. There is evidently a lot of idolatry going on in America, and it’s spreading to other nations at the speed of a mouse click! The list of wicked acts goes on:

And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

 29Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication (fornication always follows idol worship; it’s considered a ritual for some religions), wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

 30Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things (Hollywood, Bollywood), disobedient to parents (rebellious teens are a result of the idolatry),

 31Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:

 32Who knowing the judgment of God (those “Christians” who have welcomed Muslims into their midst), that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.” 

The US has been greatly defeated by the eastern religions, the source of idolatry. The infiltration of depraved Hindu philosophies and religious mysticism by New Agers has especially played a gigantic role in diverting the nation of America from the God they once feared and revered, evident in their recent acts. The nation has failed to protect its borders from depraved influences; instead it calls its people to tolerate it! The Lord will preserve His faithful Church.


American Churches to Embrace Islam on 26 June 2011

After reading the following write-up by NETB, one would expect Muslims in the Middle East to unite with Christians there; inviting them to read Bibles in their mosques instead of butchering them! Well, what exactly is the purpose for these Christians to invite Muslims to their churches? Rick Warren better visit the Mid East soon!

 

American churches to deny Jesus Christ on June 26, 2011 –

 

NTEB has reported extensively on the growing Chrislam movement. Started in part by Rick Warren of Saddleback Church, it has grown dramatically and now has infected many hundreds of churches and denominations all across America. A new group called Faith Shared is now spearheading the move to merge Christianity with Islam, and in the process provoking the very judgment of God down upon us as a nation. (NOTE: Rick Warren is not affiliated as far as we know with Faith Shared.)


The following is taken directly from their website:

“Faith Shared asks houses of worship across the country to organize events involving clergy reading from each other’s sacred texts. An example would be a Christian Minister, Jewish Rabbi and Muslim Imam participating in a worship service or other event. Suggested readings will be provided from the Torah, the Gospels, and the Qur’an, but communities are encouraged to choose readings that will resonate with their congregations. Involvement of members from the Muslim community is key. We will also provide suggestions on how to incorporate this program into your regular worship services. And we will assist local congregations in their media and communications efforts.

While there is a strong preference for all of the events to happen on the same day, a number of congregations held interfaith services in January and February giving us wonderful examples of how communities can come together in support and fellowship. We will be posting photos, sample programs and audio files from theses services.

Faith Shared will collect images and videos from these events to use in our efforts to spread this message of respect and understanding from America.

Tensions around Islam in America have erupted throughout the country in the past year, leading to misconceptions, distrust and in some cases violence. News stories on the rising tide of anti-Muslim bigotry and violence abound, with graphic and often searing images of the antagonists, the protagonists and the battlegrounds where they meet. All too often, media coverage simplistically pits Muslims against would-be Qur’an burners, neglecting any substantive representation of where the majority of Americans actually stand: a shared commitment to tolerance and freedom. We are committed to ensuring that the storyline changes dramatically in 2011 by helping to create an environment of mutual understanding and respect for each other’s faith traditions.” source – Faith Shared

The following are churches across the US who have agreed to sponsor a Chrislam service:

Congregation Location  
Anchorage First Christian Anchorage AK
University Presbyterian Church Tuscaloosa AL
Quapaw Quarter UMC Little Rock AR
Federated Community Church Flagstaff AZ
First UMC Phoenix Phoenix AZ
All Saints Cathedral Pasadena CA
First United Lutheran, San Francisco CA
Light of ChristEcumenical Catholic Church Longmont CO
Park Hill Congregational Denver CO
Union Congregational Nucla CO
Temple Micah Denver CO
Riverfront Family Church Hartford CT
The National Cathedral Washington DC
Seekers Church Washington DC
North American Old Catholic Church Washington DC
National City Christian Church Washington DC
New Ark United Church of Christ Newark DE
Faith United Church of Christ Clearwater FL
Unitarian Universalist Church of Pensacola Pensacola FL
United Church of Christ at The Villages The Villages FL
Virginia Highland Church Atlanta GA
Decatur United Church of Christ Decatur GA
The Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist College Park GA
St. Elizabeth’s Episcopal Church Honolulu HI
Church of the Epiphany Honolulu HI
Cathedral of St. Andrew, the Episcopal Diocese of HI Honolulu HI
Collegiate United Methodist Church and Wesley Foundation Ames IA
Congregational United Church of Christ Iowa City IA
Urbandale UCC Church Urbndale IA
Hillview United Methodist Boise ID
Boise First United Methodist Church, Cathedral of the Rockies Boise ID
First United of Oak Park Chicago IL
St Thomas Mission Chicago IL
The Chicago Temple First UMC Chicago IL
First Presbyterian Church of Fort Wayne Fort Wayne IN
Northminster Baptist Church Monroe LA
The Unitarian Universalist Society of Amherst Amherst MA
Grace Episcopal Amherst MA
Church of Our Savior Arlington MA
St Paul’s Cathedral Boston MA
Old Cambridge Baptist Church Cambridge MA
Hadwen Park Congregational Church Worcester MA
Veritas United Church of Christ Hagerstown MD
Trinity United Methodist Mountain Grove MO
St. Mary’s Episcopal Church Ely MN
First Congregational Great Falls MT
MtView/Trinity UM Parish Butte MT
Unitarian Universalist Ocean County Congregation, Toms River NJ
Christ Episcopal Church Toms River NJ
Zion Methodist Church Las Vegas NV
Prepare New York New York NY
Auburn Theological Seminary New York NY
The Sacred Center of New York New York NY
Christ Church United Methodist NewYork NY
The Riverside Church of New York New York NY
All Souls Bethelehem Church Brooklyn NY
First Congregational UCC Corvalis OR
Spirit of Peace United Church of Christ Sioux Falls SD
Baha’i Faith Community Center Nashville TN
Saint John’s United Methodist Church Austin TX
Hope for Peace & Justice Interfaith Peace Chapel Dallas TX
Cathedral of Hope Dallas TX
Wasatch Presbyterian Church of Salt Lake City Salt Lake City UT
Grace Episcopal Church St George UT
United Church of Bellows Falls Bellow Falls VT
Cathedral of the Diocese of Vermont Burlington VT
Vermont Ecumenical Council & Bible Society Burlington VT
Dummerston Congregational Church UCC Drummerston VT
Memorial United Church of Christ Fitchburg WI
Trinity Episcopal Church Janesville WI
First Congregational Church UCC Casper Casper WY

YWAM’s Obsession with New Age Creativity

“Whatever you do is creative; not just singing, playing or dancing, even just listening to someone teach is creative.”

That statement is put up as a status by one of my contacts, a YWAMer, on Facebook. This teaching on ‘creativity in everything was taught at one of the training schools of YWAM. I read all the comments that followed; basically they were all about how wonderful the speaker, who taught creativity, was. The speaker, Sue, commented too, stating how she loved all the “sue-isms” that were on the Facebook wall. (No glory to God, she was happy she was being praised!) Many YWAMers and otherwise are completely unaware of this. It takes the Holy Ghost to reveal the deception.

There is a tremendous obsession with creativity in today’s world. Everything needs to be “creative”; anything “old” has no place in the minds of this generation. So what’s wrong with YWAM’s infatuation with creativity? Leaving that aside for now, let’s turn to the New Age spirituality and what it has to do with creativity. The New Age beliefs are based on creativity. Everything should be creative, just like what is being taught at YWAM, a Christian mission. This organization solely moves by strategies and creativity. If it’s a local outreach, the team would sit and think of a strategy to “win” souls to Christ. (The main purpose of YWAM is establishing a Utopia-like community. It aims to build a world based on ‘christian principles’ .) During intercessory prayers, people ask God for strategies and creativity to bring “His” will about. This approach is taken out of the New Age spirituality. In an interview, Dr. Adair was asked questions on creativity; he is highly regarded by the New Age spiritualists; I can testify his answers are not far from what YWAM teaches although they tend to back up these teachings with random Bible verses. And believe me, they are excellent at convincing anyone who lacks discernment (this is one of the reasons why christian youth is the prime target). I do not say that Dr. Adair’s philosophy does not work, but who is his inspiration? If the spiritualists use his books to counsel their clients, should it not ring bells in the mind of a follower of Christ? Study the page from which the quote below is extracted. Notice the page is filled with New Age spirituality: yoga, meditation, psychic, auras, theosophy etc. And this kind of New Age teaching is rampant in Christian churches and global missions. It’s really all about self-gratification disguised as ‘doing God’s will’.

“Creative thinking always involves this sort of team work. A parting word of encouragement, the worst unconscious assumption you can make is that you are not a creative thinker. You may, of course, be right, but you will never know until you put into practice the principles I have outlined in The Art of Creative Thinking. The trouble is that we don’t know ourselves very well in some respects and we tend to be poor judges of our own creative potential. So experiment, have fun, and give yourself a few surprises.” – Dr. Adair

Where is the dependence on the Holy Spirit or His leading? Crying out to God to help a man-made agenda is a waste of time. Might as well bake some cookies. I’ve done that myself, sitting and praying with other YWAMers asking God to give us strategy to bring “His will” (when in fact it’s what the leaders have thought about). The Spirit does not need human intervention to fulfill the purposes of God; all He needs is a person, humbled before God, ready to look like a fool for the sake of his God.A typical argument would go like this: ‘if we don’t use creativity how will we attract people “to God”? Since when is attracting people to God in our hands? Regardless of the culture, God’s word is to be preached as it is. The Gospel message is not to be camouflaged to attract more people; it is the work of the Holy Spirit and strategies and creativeness is not what He wants. Christians today are so distracted by spreading their gospels in a way pleasing to the world that they have forgotten to first live God’s Gospel. The Lord isn’t a least bit concerned with our creativity and amazing strategies. So clearly, it is our fallen nature we are trying to please. Being creative does bring about our agenda, but that is always antagonist to God’s purpose. Ask yourself: if you are not creative with the Gospel, does that make you feel stressed and guilty? I’m certain the answer is a resounding ‘yes’!
The whole art of creativity is demonic (not creativity per se; it’s the obsession with it – thinking that’s the only way), and must not be entertained by genuine believers! It’s dangerous as it takes the focus off God and on to our imaginations and our flesh. I have witnessed how obsessed University of Nations (YWAM)  is with ideas, strategies and creativity. Anything that is uncreative misses the mark and needs to be improved on, just to get people’s attention. Their worship is creative, their intercession is creative, teaching has to be creative, outreaches are creative etc. Even the native Americans emphasise the important of creativity in their worship and lifestyle, so do the Hindus, the Muslims and all other religions. Who is YWAM trying to impress? All the countless number of training courses are based primarily on creativity, whether it’s Creative Leadership Development, Creative DTS, or any course. They’re all about strategies and ideas.  

 

I’m not advertising a boring life; but I am saying that a Christ-centred mind will not focus too much on strategies and creativity! Study the life of the characters who followed God in the Bible. Were their lives boring even though they did not have an infatuation with creativity and strategies?

 


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