Warning Against Contemplative Spirituality

In the short time I have been researching this topic I have been asked repeatedly, what is WRONG with that?  What is wrong with breathing, with meditating, etc. if they “work”?  These methods are wrong because they are not taught in the bible. The fact that they are used by other religions should be enough to scare us away.  As we become more and more bogged down with muddying our own water the truth is getting harder to see.  It is a simple answer – stay away.

Should Pastors Warn Their Congregations About Contemplative Spirituality?

This article taken in it’s entirety from Lighthouse Trails http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/index.php?p=1542&c=1

Lighthouse Trails believes that contemplative spirituality must be addressed head on. Recently, we were contacted by a pastor who told us he did not see the reason to focus on these “negative” aspects (such as contemplative and emerging). He wanted to know why we did what we did. We believe the Bible instructs believers to specifically warn about spiritual deceptions, which means naming names and identifying the deception for what it is. Right now, contemplative mysticism is making its way into virtually every denomination and evangelical group. Does that mean that every church in those groups or denominations has been influenced? No. There are churches who have rightly warned their congregations and together have made the decision that this new spirituality will not be part of their church life. But there are many churches that are ignoring this deception, saying that it is not necessary to talk about it.

This is baffling to us. If pastors don’t want to talk about these things on Sunday mornings, then the least they can do for their people is hold special meetings that address the contemplative/emerging issues and allow the well-informed to teach the less-informed.

As our newsletter and website have been showing for several years, mystical spirituality has gained a foothold in much of Christianity today. In 1992, Newsweek magazine did a cover story called “Talking to God,” which informed its readers that this spiritual practice had gained significant momentum in church life.

The article stated: “[S]ilence, appropriate body posture and, above all, emptying the mind through repetition of prayer-have been the practices of mystics in all the great world religions. And they form the basis on which most modern spiritual directors guide those who want to draw closer to God.” (Newsweek, 1/6/92) Newsweek was reporting on this over fifteen years ago. You can imagine the impact contemplative has had since then.

If the beloved apostle Paul saw the need to warn the flock and exhort Christian “overseers,” then how is it that many of today’s Christian pastors and leaders do not seem to have the same concerns?

“Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.” Acts 20:28-31

Celebration of Discipline Richard Foster

Richard Foster—Celebration of Deception   by Bob DeWaay 

 An article addressing the title Celebration of Discipline

http://cicministry.org/commentary/issue112.htm

I’ve been doing a little research in the way of the contemplative, emerging church. You will probably recognize names such as the one above, Richard Foster, or Dallas Willard, Henri Nouwen and Rob –don’t we all looove NOOMA –  Bell, etc.  Yesterday I started to put this up but was distracted by the wonderful world of weed pulling. But, imagine my shock this morning when I heard this very title mentioned at church (NO, not the pastor, whew!)   But…

…If you want to understand the presence of God, read this book written 30 years ago!…

 WHAT??!!  I had to leave the building. Please tell me– not another one! 

Hmmm..coincidence?  I don’t think so.

I touched on the topic of emergence just slightly here  https://mkayla.wordpress.com/2009/06/24/supernatural-encounters/ –   In the beginning of my research days I didn’t pay too much attention to the emergent church because I didn’t think it applied to me.  Wrong, I was.  I, and those I “ran with”  just hadn’t gotten around to calling it that.  So, upon doing a little more reading I am finding Foster’s teachings from 30 years ago are much the same as we find in inner healing and visualization techniques and the entire experienced based theology camp.  That is why I am saying it is not so far removed from the mystical things I practiced – let’s just all lay on the floor and experience God.  Not to mention these practices he has committed his life’s work to, and in teaching others are taken from other religions making them a big no-no for any Christian.  Can anyone say ‘oooohhhmm”?  How about teachers for itching ears because sound doctrine is not enough?

Even so, I find his books are suggested and even recommended reading by pastors and elders and carried by Christian book stores. Why?  Richard Foster is not a Christian. He is a Quaker/Mystic.  Big difference!  Big. Huge!  If that offends anyone, boo hoo, cry now. These people do not preach Jesus Christ!  They do not teach Holiness as unto our God!

The link above from Bob DeWaay is an excellent source of information as I have found all of his writings to be. Please read this one.  

The only safe and proved method in learning about God – and believe me, I have learned the hard way – the only way  in entering into, or practicing or experiencing His presence is found in His word and in His word only.  Anything else is a big fat, genuine steal your salvation as we all go skippin’ along on the glorious road paved with light straight to hell  F A K E.

It’s Supernatural: “A Prophetic Word From John Kilpatrick’ or not…

YouTube – WSTK-ITV – It’s Supernatural: “A Prophetic Word From John Kilpatrick.

This is a YouTube link to hear Sid Roth of It’s Supernatural talking with John Kilpatrick of the Toronto Blessing. John is giving a testimony of his experiences in the past and a new word from God of a major upcoming earthquake in America.  According to John God gave him instructions on how to prepare for what is coming on the earth and he spells it R.E.S.U.R.R.E.C.T.I.O.N. !!!!  God speaks in acronyms!  I hate to think what is being resurrected! For a small amount of cold hard cash John will be happy to share that information with you.

Hmmm..freely you have received…??  Show me the money!!!

This is how to “discern” the difference in a false prophet and a true one.  It does not take a special anointing, you will not need someone to lay hands on you to “impart” this special power, you will not need a special prayer time.  All it really takes is a trip to your bible.  I can’t think of a single prophet who asked for money in exchange to give the word of God to the people.

Ezekiel 13:3  Thus says the Lord God” “Woe to the foolish prophets, who follow their own spirit and have seen nothing!”

Be prepared. I thought this information was very demonic.

Supernatural Encounters

Supernatural Encounters

God is supernatural and many unexplained supernatural events can occur. But we have become out of focus with “God can do anything”, and too much emphasis on the supernatural occurrences and an excess of angelic visitation, supernatural experiences and dreams and visions.  Even the great prophets and disciples in the bible didn’t have THAT many. God never violates His own character or His word.

In the bible, every supernatural occurrence had a reason and an outcome. Current false teaching is just the opposite with those false teachers and prophets claiming trips to heaven and out of body experiences for no reason other than to just hang out and have a good time.  They claim it is their “right” as a child of God. Really?  I wasn’t aware we had rights to anything.

Ezekiel was not taken up in the spirit to “hang out”.  He was called as a prophet to warn fallen Israel of their sin and the consequences and to repent!  That is a true function of a prophet, to speak the word of God. Tongues of fire in Acts led to a great many salvations and the gospel of Jesus was preached throughout the land, many were healed and delivered and the church grew at an alarming rate – a true sign and wonder!

God spoke to His people in dreams and visions and they either immediately understood or He revealed the message to them.  In the Old Testament, God mostly spoke to people in their dreams like a one way conversation. There was no need for an interpreter.  Daniel interpreted dreams for a pagan King Nebuchadnezzar so the King would acknowledge God.  How much more now can we understand of our own dreams and visions from God that we have been filled with the Holy Spirit?  Peter did not understand his symbolic dream and the Lord immediately explained it to him.

Likewise, angels are messengers of God.  They do not bring gifts or healings or even revival, nor do they perform spiritual surgical operations on people. They do not drop their feathers to prove they are around.  The bible tells us they are, so why do they need to prove it? Angels worship God and do not bring attention to themselves and warn others to not do the same. Angels who forgot their place were kicked out of heaven! Biblical signs and wonders are salvations, healings, deliverances, things that God is interested in.  Much different than those that claim otherwise with gold dust, gems and oil!  Remember, revivals are about repentance, not fleshy signs and wonders.

Galatians 1:8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.

Beware of all teaching supporting “experienced based theology” in which much importance is placed on experiencing His presence and His voice and other supernatural experiences above all else, including the importance of bible study. Watch out for meditative (lecto divina) and contemplative/emergent/mystical spirituality, centering prayer methods or methods of “the ancient fathers” and Catholic mystics which were not taught anywhere in the bible or by Jesus or practiced by His disciples. These are not new but are moving in as accepted practices in our churches as methods of becoming closer to God.  These teachings are about achieving a mind set with “god” and higher spiritual planes or levels.  These are not methods of our Lord and have roots in Hinduism, Buddhism, Catholicism and the occult.

Also beware of “inner healing” methods used in theophostics and sozo which were first taught and used by New Age practitioners and secular therapists through  guided imagery and visualization techniques. I know this because I used these methods for several years before I came to Christ!   All these so called Christian ministries have done is attached the name of Jesus added with it some scriptural truths and packaged it all up as “God’s”.  Nonsense!  Just because a “jesus” shows up in these sessions does not mean it is the true Jesus! And, Jesus never discussed or prayed “inner healing” with anyone. Even though there is a “level of truth” in these methods does not make it holy and acceptable before God. For more on this topic see my article here – Inner Healing.

Colossians 2:8 Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.

Beware of teachers and prophets who really like to quote the Old Testament to back up their weird teachings and supernatural experiences.  One scripture does not a doctrine make, no matter how convincing the teacher! Numerology is of the occult.  There is no instance in the bible that God speaks to His people through the use of numbers. Watch for stories of portals, throne room and third heaven experiences and other various things false teachers and prophets are trying to teach us of late.

Something is very wrong when Christians are encouraged and taught to practice that which the pagans, occultists and new agers do. Some believe since the pagans already do these things, Christians need to catch up because it is our heritage!! It is not!  God created men and women to be on the earth, not out of it.

Deuteronomy 29:29  The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.

There is a fine line in what we are allowed to know.  God is only going to reveal Himself and the spiritual realm to a degree.  He is the One who decides and has established how far we can go. Once we dare to cross that fine line, once we go to God and make demands to see and to know, as many now claim that we can, such things considered as Gnostic, we have opened ourselves up to occultic experiences masquerading as Godly ones.  I believe Satan often shows up in these moments and is very happy to play his charade as an angel masquerading in light.

1 Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in the latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.

Their message must also prove over and again that Jesus, the Christ, the Messiah, son of the living God is indeed Lord and has come in the flesh.  They must speak of the gospel of the Lord and His salvation and of sin and true repentance. This is the very reason Jesus died and the essence of the great commission!  Their message must stir others to a greater love of God and of His Word and the love of His people.  If this is not so, if the message they bring creates a need for “self”, my gifts, my worship, my feelings, my healing, etc. then the messenger is not of God.

Long gone is the care for the truth of Christ and the simplicity of the gospel message. There are so many deceived, operating in false signs and wonders who are too prideful or stubborn to look at the word of God to see the truth.  Others claim these signs and wonders simply for the attention, fame and cold hard cash they provide.  Who needs to work when manipulation of the desperate is a well honed talent?  How long will the Lord relent and when will be the moment for them when it is too late to turn back?

Whose Death??

A while back I was praying for some of my dearly loved family members.  I was somehow connecting the death of my daughter Jessica, and that sadness along with the sadness and loss I felt over these lost family members.  And in doing so, said to the Lord, “don’t let her death be in vain, save these others that I love”.   Don’t let her death be in vain..!!  What?

It hit me at that moment with full force what I was actually claiming.  Jessica did not die for these people.  Jesus died His death is the only one that should matter or be important.  Now, I didn’t actually believe her death had the power to do anything, but the words I heard myself saying made me wonder where my true focus had gone.

How wrong I was, and yet how often we put the death or struggle of another person in a higher place than it should be. How easy it is sometimes to allow our emotions in one situation to bleed over into another.  Jesus said we would have tribulation but HE has overcome the world! (John 16:33)

Can I spell REPENT?!!

The suffering and death of Jesus Christ is the only death that can ever make a difference is someone’s life. No matter our own suffering, no person on earth has the power to do what only God can!  For only He has the power over life and death, only He can bridge the gap between a Holy God and fallen, sinful and self absorbed mankind.

God forgive me, a sinner!

John 3:16 -17 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

John 11:25-26 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.  Do you believe this?”

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Just a Weaver

This is a beautiful poem, the words reminding me again that we don’t know the reasons why things happen in this life.  One day, everything will be known and it will all make sense.  Until that day it should be enough that our Father God has a reason for allowing the pain.

 

Just a Weaver

by Benjamin Malachi Franklin

My life is but a weaving,
    between my God and me,
I do not choose the colors,
    He worketh steadily.

Ofttimes he weaveth sorrow,
    and I in foolish pride
Forget He sees the upper,
    and I the underside.

Not till the loom is silent,
    and the shuttles cease to fly,
Will God unroll the canvas,
    and explain the reasons why

The dark threads are as needful
    in the skillful weaver’s hand
As threads of gold and silver
    in the pattern He has planned.

 

Here is a link to a short article written about the author and a picture of him.  http://www.authorsden.com/visit/viewshortstory.asp?AuthorID=47736&id=23610

Glad Tidings of Good Things

A couple of days ago I found out some information about someone who has been a great influence in my life.  The information shocked me, as it was hard to believe. I was angry for a time, confused and a little desperate. 

This morning I found the joy and peace of the Lord very unexpectedly on another blog. And when I read the words written there this scripture came to my mind.

The moment profoundly impacted me and I was again reminded of the great unfailing love and perseverance of our Lord so often found in unsuspected places in His own people.

Here is the scripture.  May it remind you, as it did me, the blessing of good news and bring renewed hope to you as one who brings peace and glad tidings of good things.

How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news,
Who proclaims peace,
Who brings glad tidings of good things,
Who proclaims salvation,
Who says to Zion,
“Your God reigns!”
Your watchmen shall lift up thier voices,
With thier voices they shall sing together;
for they shall see eye to eye
When the Lord brings back Zion.
Break forth in joy, sing together,
You waste places of Jerusalem!
For the Lord has comforted His people,
He has redeemed Jerusalem.
The Lord has made bare His holy arm
In they eyes of all the nations;
And all the ends of the earth shall see
The salvation of our God.      Isaiah 52:7-10

Inner Healing

I wanted to put something together in the area of inner healing as I was asked about it.  If you want to read the conversation it can be found beginning with comment #2 under the topic Generational Curses  here – https://mkayla.wordpress.com/2009/06/06/generational-curses/#comments.  I’ve copied most of the teaching to this article, so it may not be necessary.

I don’t have a large amount of experience in this area, but I want to share what I do know with you. I was trained under a specialized form called SOZO which was written specifically for the ministry I was involved with. I participated on teams approximately 6 or 8 times and personally underwent the process.

Many years ago I learned and used the same methods while in secular therapy referred to then as “inner child healing”.  When someone comes and makes a connection like this we should pay attention. It should be a huge cause for alarm.

This is the process.  The person is asked by a counselor to go back in time and remember the first time she felt a certain negative way about herself or the first time she remembers suffering abuse or trauma, whatever the presenting problem. Once the memory is there she is asked to “connect with” the feelings of the memory. When that is achieved she then is told to “speak into” that moment to the child affirming she is loved, worthy, important, safe etc. Then, the “child” is assured she is safe now because the “adult” can and will protect her in the future.

The idea here is to speak to the negative influence thereby breaking negative thought patterns or behaviors believed to have been brought on from some trauma in the person’s life.  This is known as visualization or guided imagery.

So imagine this same scenario in a “Christian” setting,  but instead of the “adult” speaking,  the “counselor” or “prayer partner”  asks Jesus to speak His truth into the memory.  Same process just a different “savior”.

Hmm…so where is this in the bible?

We already know as Christians we are not to look back and that we are in a process of discipleship, having our minds renewed and looking to God who is our hope.

Consider these scriptures:

Luke 9:62 – But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”

Ephesians 4:20-24 – 20 But you have not so learned Christ, 21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: 22 that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, 23 and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.

Romans 12:2 – And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Acts 20:32 –  “So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.

Psalm 43:5 – Why are you cast down, O my soul?And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.

Romans 15:13 – Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Philippians 1:6 – being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ

The story of Nicodemus came to my mind as I was considering healing.  This is just kinda paraphrased from John 3. When Nicodemus didn’t understand the words of Jesus in being “born again” he questioned how could it be possible to enter the womb a second time. And Jesus clarified so that Nicodemus understood it is not a matter of the flesh, but a matter of the spirit. It struck me because our growth is not a matter of going back into the past, its a matter of being born again and going forward from there.

John 3:1-6 1 There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2 This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”
3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
4 Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”
5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

The best argument is the truth of scripture against the lie. There isn’t a single instance of this or any “inner healing” process, visualization or guided imagery techniques being taught or practiced by Jesus or the disciples.  We do not borrow techniques from the world or other religions. Christianity has its own methods for healing and we don’t need the ideas of man in the form of psychology or New Age practices to get us there. God does not “show up” just because we expect him to or just because we stamp the name of Jesus onto some method or program.

This inner healing for the Christan is a very wicked, very evil practice. God is very much aware of our sufferings and our focus is on Him, not the past. God does not violate what He has already designed and as born again believers and followers of Jesus we already have what we need to be overcomers. I believe the “jesus” speaking to these people is not Jesus Christ, the Messiah, but a demon disguising himself. I say this out of my own personal SOZO experiences and those I helped lead.

Stay far away from any prayer ministry involving the healing of past memories no matter how good it sounds or how much sense it seems to make. It is a dangerous road to go on and you may find yourself with more trouble than when you started.

Four Current Movements

I am posting the link to an excellent article that I found while researching some months back which gives a breakdown of

  • Four movements within the church and their “off-shoots”
  • The meaning of the movements, their beliefs and teachings
  • The names of their leaders and teachers

If you are interested in quick and detailed information in this area, this article is a great way to become familiar!

Four Current Movements within the Church

May the eyes of your understanding be enlightened. Ephesians 1:17-19

the anchor

Quote

 

…like an anchor, holding me, weighted, secure,

the greatest horror, the biggest loss…

…holding me from falling into the arms of madness,

into the screaming blackness quickly surrounding me, part of me wanting to go, to be gone, to disappear, to make this not happen. 

 – I could not change this.  Of all the things I fixed for you, I could not fix this one.  It was done. – I again am helpless…

He was there all along.  He knew way before I. 

It was the way she looked in her eyes.  It was the way I felt when she would leave the house…. a decided unsettled – ness,

sometimes just knocking lightly in my head, other times screaming, ripping through my heart. 

The wakefulness, the middle of the night prayers, our prayers, the tears.  Her tears, my tears;  a terror we shared in our spirits.  One that we did not dare name or speak of for as to do so may call it into existence setting things into motion. 

What things? Then,

walking into her room, her bed unmade, empty forever.  Her favorite shower gel waiting on the shelf, a bottle of “barbie pink” nail polish that I had just given her, untouched.

These simple stupid things that would seem not to matter are the worst of all.  They are the material reminders of her personality. 

“I love you mommy” an echo, haunting….through the house, mingling with the soft scent of her perfume.  And this thing.  The absence of her…

…as deep cries unto deep  I cannot and will not ever be able to wrap myself around this one.  No need to try, it is impossible to accept  that her death, her passing of this earth as

 my reality. 

It is impossible to accept that I will not see her here on this earth again.  So, acceptance is no longer a goal, or even a factor in the rest of my life here on earth.  I just shuffle through, one step a day, sometimes no step, sometimes falling backward,

but mostly moving…by one breath at a time.

and I remember the promise.  Jessica.

I remember the prophecy. 

He knew all along. 

He is my Anchor.

_____more_____

 – His Hands That Held You –

In Memory of Jessica (pics)