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Seek me and live

I have some things on my heart I’d like to share. As a side note, I’d like to say that this week my life was rocked. As if things weren’t already difficult enough, things went from a category 1 storm to a category 5, in a span of about 60 seconds. What’s the old adage? “When it rains, it pours!” Jesus confirmed what Job had already proclaimed thousands of years prior, “As sparks fly upward, so are the troubles of man.” Christ said, “when” the storms come… not, “if” the storms come.

Little did I know that my musings on “In the boat with Jesus” were a precursor of an even more tempestuous storm. You’ve been there, right? What else can I do? I must fall on the rock, my foundation. He alone is the rock that is higher than I. The Holy Spirit spoke to me so beautifully through Psalm 61 this week. If you think about it, remember to pray for us.

The word of the Lord to Israel through the prophet Amos in Chapter 5:4-5 was as follows:

Seek me and live;
but do not seek Bethel,
and do not enter into Gilgal
or cross over to Beersheba;
for Gilgal shall surely go into exile,
and Bethel shall come to nothing
.”

These landmarks highlighted by God, held an historical and spiritual significance in the life of Israel. So much so, that the life of the nation was inexorably tied to them. Unfortunately, these had become places of idolatry. Gilgal, the location, became more important than the God of Gilgal, and as such, God is warning the people that in spite of the historical importance of these landmarks and subsequent encounters with God in these places, they are ultimately, in of and themselves, insignificant. “Seek me and live.”

Much like the Ephod the priest wore. Instead of seeking the God who was manifest through the Urim and Thummim, the people began to worship the Ephod which contained in a pouch the Urim and Thummim! Continue Reading »

After reading this post read my post “I’m moving on

I received this word tonight from someone close to this whole situation. He made the following comment in his email as a precursor to this letter from Fresh Fire Ministry. I trust what this man has written about this. I’ve known about this for over two mos. and have chosen not to write about this in public, concerned that it would be spreading gossip. I implicitly trust my friends observations and reporting of what he’s been told about this. He’s been right on with everything else he’s told me to date.

After you read these statements, and if you have a chance, read my article called “Seek me and live.”

“Here is some info, but according to what we have heard from several sources, this is much more than just an emotional relationship. According to staff And former staff members, they claim that Todd is a pathological liar. The board privately has said that Todd has been lying to them all along. We are praying for those around Todd to demand for him to get the help he needs before thrusting him back into ministry like they did 2.5 years ago when he had an affair with a different staff member. We are praying for Todd, his family, along with others that have been impacted through this”.

From the Board of Directors Continue Reading »

Test Revival with Doctrine

August 14, 2008 | By: John Piper
Category: Commentary

Lee Grady, the editor of Charisma, one of the main charismatic magazines, has written a lament and critique of the Lakeland “revival” which is now in a tailspin over the leader’s announced separation from his wife. Grady’s summons to pray for the church and our nation is right, and among his commendable questions and observations are these:

  • “Many of us would rather watch a noisy demonstration of miracles, signs and wonders than have a quiet Bible study. Yet we are faced today with the sad reality that our untempered zeal is a sign of immaturity. Our adolescent craving for the wild and crazy makes us do stupid things. It’s way past time for us to grow up.”
  • “True revival will be accompanied by brokenness, humility, reverence and repentance—not the arrogance, showmanship and empty hype that often was on display in Lakeland.”
  • “A prominent Pentecostal evangelist called me this week after Bentley’s news hit the fan. He said to me: “I’m now convinced that a large segment of the charismatic church will follow the anti-Christ when he shows up because they have no discernment.” Ouch. Hopefully we’ll learn our lesson this time and apply the necessary caution when an imposter shows up.”

Charismatics will not be the only ones who follow the Antichrist when he rises. So will the mass of those who today in thousands of evangelical churches belittle the truth of biblical doctrine as God’s agent to set us free (John 8:32).

Discernment is not created in God’s people by brokenness, humility, reverence, and repentance. It is created by biblical truth and the application of truth by the power of the Holy Spirit to our hearts and minds. When that happens, then the brokenness, humility, reverence, and repentance will have the strong fiber of the full counsel of God in them. They will be profoundly Christian and not merely religious and emotional and psychological.

The common denominator of those who follow the Antichrist will not be “charismatic.” It will be, as Paul says, “they refused to love the truth.”

The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12)

Our test for every Lakeland that comes along should first be doctrinal and expositional. Is this awakening carried along by a “love for the truth” and a passion to hear the whole counsel of God proclaimed?

Just click on the link, it will load up in a few seconds. A beautiful rendition by Matthew Ward.

Psalm 61

Lead Me to the Rock

To the choirmaster: with stringed instruments. Of David.

61:1 Hear my cry, O God,
listen to my prayer;
2 from the end of the earth I call to you
when my heart is faint.
Lead me to the rock
that is higher than I,
3 for you have been my refuge,
a strong tower against the enemy.

4 Let me dwell in your tent forever!
Let me take refuge under the shelter of your wings! Selah
5 For you, O God, have heard my vows;
you have given me the heritage of those who fear your name.

6 Prolong the life of the king;
may his years endure to all generations!
7 May he be enthroned forever before God;
appoint steadfast love and faithfulness to watch over him!

8 So will I ever sing praises to your name,
as I perform my vows day after day.

Perhaps no one issue has been more divisive and misunderstood over the centuries as the relevance and role of women leadership, within the construct of New Testament practice and theology. The prevailing position in most Protestant influences are that women are not allowed to hold any position of leadership in the church whereby they would be teaching or leading in any capacity over a man.

Women Pastors, teaching Elders, and any of the other 5 fold ministry gifts listed in Ephesians 4 are most definitely out of bounds in most churches. I’ve been following a discussion on another forum and thought that I’d use my blog as a means of providing some additional writings and documentation that might help to expand and clear up some of the difficulties related to this discussion.

Although I have no interest in carrying on a prolonged online discussion on the subject, I would certainly welcome any civil and respectful input anyone would care to share regarding the matter, especially after you’ve had a chance to read through this first article I am posting on the subject. Thanks to my good friends for providing good alternative resources that are well done in most cases. Although, I may not agree on every detail, this first publication provides some good and healthy challenges to the standard presuppositions held by many against women leadership in the church.

kebaileynt-women-and-ministry-1

After reading through the link above. Open the study notes provided in the following link. Print them out and review the source material and questions. I know that this takes a little work, however, if one is going to make an intelligent and informed decision on this subject, you need to devote a little time to know what the arguments are both pro and con.

kebaileynt-women-notes

Bill showing a couple of devices used in his medical treatment.

Bill showing a couple of devices used in his medical treatment.

Pastor Bill is presently going through a prolonged, yet highly medically advanced treatment of prostate cancer in Florida.

For those of you who are not familiar with Bill, he is the Pastor of Crossroads Community Church in Vancouver, WA. Crossroads is a fairly large church that has enjoyed many years of fruitful expansion and blessing. I guess you can term the church a ‘mega-church’. Continue Reading »

R.I.P. Lakeland

Friday, August 01, 2008

*Note from Blog Author*

My posting of this article by William Fawcett doesn’t mean that I somehow think that these kinds of shenanigans, as demonstrated in Lakeland, are over. Nor do I agree with some others who have linked to this article and are stating that the folding up of the circus top in Lakeland, is somehow indicative of a ‘seed’ falling into the ground and dying, in order that more meetings just like Lakeland will crop up all over the world! I hope not! Bentley has been proved to be an embarrassment. Enough commentary by me though. Please read what William Fawcett has to say, he makes some good points.

How to build a credible argument.
R.I.P. Lakeland

Written by, William Fawcett

On one hand we have people claiming that Todd Bentley is dealing with Kundalini fire (Serpent-spine power), an aspect of Eastern religions. I’ve also seen accusations that Bentley’s female (now male) angel Emma is really Emma-o, some sort of eastern demon (actually the “King of Hell”). And people trying to see a monkey in the beard of a Tatto of Jesus. Nipple rings in the tatto of “Medusa.” And on ad nausueum. Continue Reading »