Sunday, August 26, 2007

Jesus Doing Back Flips

Our teacher at church Friday night hit another home run. I will give my interpretation of what he said and I will go over the top a little. Anyway, as he talked the picture coming to me was of Jesus doing back flips and shouting “We did it! We did it! Father!!

Jesus sent the seventy disciples out two by two. (Luk 10:1) He gave them similar instructions that he had given the twelve disciples earlier. That earlier time, he told his disciples to heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils (Mat 10:8). And, declare “the reign of Heaven has arrived.” (Phillips translation)

Scripture then records that the seventy returned with joy, saying Lord, “even the devils are subject unto us in your name!”

It was at this point I envisioned Jesus doing hand springs. Luk 21 records that Jesus was rejoicing in His spirit and was thanking the Father, the Lord of heaven and earth. Jesus was also shouting, “I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven!”

This is what I was hearing. The disciples were now establishing the sovereignty of God over the sovereignty of Satan. I see Jesus shouting, Father, we did it! They are doing what you sent me to show them and they did it! We did it! We are now on our way and nothing can stop us! We can leave it in their hands finally!

Of course at that point, he revealed to the disciples that now they were winning, get ready for everything to hit the fan; which of course it did. (Mat 10:15 ff)

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Saturday, August 25, 2007

CNN, God's Warriors, Christians as Taliban

Following CNN’s Christiane Amanpour’ series on God’s Warriors this week, I sent her the e-mail below. The program was well worth watching. She describes how the members of the three major religions, Judaism, Islam, and Christianity are reacting to the perceived threats of encroaching secularism as well as from each other. She called the responders God’s Warriors. I hope a lot of people saw it, or will see it in the reruns. However, because it was a secular program, I was not surprised that all the weapons of warfare of all three groups were only understood through a secular lens. As a Christian, I was concerned that portraying only the secular approaches of Christianity, she made us appear as equivalent to the Taliban.

After the series, I sent Mrs. Amanpour the following e-mail.
That was a great piece of work! The young people of Islam were scary. There is one group of Christians however, that you missed who theoretically will be their match. If you had searched a little more, you would have discovered a substantial number of Christian God’s Warriors who approach the battle differently than those you interviewed. If you are planning to continue your study, I would point you to ministries such as Morningstar Ministries of the Rev. Rick Joyner. The Rev. Joyner has taken over Jim and Tammy Faye Baker’s PTL buildings and property. His young people go through an entirely different boot camp from what you described and they take it to the streets. You will also discover that he probably represents the real cutting edge of modern Christianity in the world. So, you may have totally missed the big story as far as Christianity is concerned.

This group of God’s Warriors believes that the cultural and religious war has to be fought not on this plane, but on another plane of reality. St. Paul in the book of Ephesians 6:12 puts it this way: “For ours is no struggle against enemies of flesh and blood but against all the various Powers of Evil that holds sway in the Darkness around us.” And again in 1 Cor. 10:4 “The weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds.” In other words, the battle against secularism as well as the battle against radical Islam is to be fought not against an earthly enemy but against the spiritual forces that are behind that enemy and that energizes it. This approach is much closer to New Testament Christianity than any you described.

Thanks again for your contribution.

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Monday, August 20, 2007

Holy Spirit Gifted Women Called Witches

Today on her program, Patricia King had Mary Goddard whom Patricia credits as being the person who mentored, raised-up, and released her into the ministry. When Mary Goddard related the story of her own start, she included a familiar story.

She described how she was in a small women’s fellowship. One of the women began to demonstrate exceptional spiritual gifts. She frightened the other women. Some even wondered if she might be a witch. However, one day the lady lead a hardened sinner to Jesus with a radical change of his behavior. That got the other women’s attention including Mary’s.

I wondered how many women do you suppose started their ministry by being a part of some small female study group, discovered the Holy Spirt, and suffered persecution?

At my university graduate school, we were encouraged to not study why people became psychologically ill, but rather to study those people who manifested exceptional abilities. So, observing the exceptionality of those receiving the Baptism of the Holy Spirit, I did what I was trained to do. I took my tape recorder and traveled through several states interviewing them.

After listening to Mary Goddard, I went back through my taped notes. I found the story of Sharon. Sharon and her husband were a ministry team. Her husband would sometimes run up on the stage when others were ministering and get outrageous. Reluctantly shy Sharon ran after him interpreting, making all the bizarre sounds and gyrations, he would make, and the crowd would go wild. Sharon was impressive.

I asked: Sharon, do you remember when you first started? Yes, I was in a Southern Baptist Church and there was a group of females we called 007 secret agents. Even at that time I had discernment enough to know that if I wanted an answer to a spiritual problem, I bypassed my pastor and went to them.

Were they Holy Spirit filled and speaking in tongues Baptists?

Yes, but it was as though the Holy Spirit wooed the people to that group and people who would be unnerved did not show up. There were other women’s groups in the church, but I could see something was going on there. One day, the pastor let a Charismatic Bible teacher instruct us if she promised not to mention the Baptism. But she invited me to her home and I received the Baptism in the Holy Spirit and began speaking in tongues. After that, I too became a teacher.

Another person, Jane, got my attention because every time I was with her and she would start teaching in her small fellowship, people literally seemed to stop breathing in order not to miss a word. I thought that must be like it was around Jesus. I know I felt that way. I taped her interview.

Jane told a similar story to Sharon. She was in a small women’s Southern Baptist fellowship. Early in her life, she discovered she knew things about people that she could not have known by ordinary ways. After she received a real outpouring of the Holy Spirit in her life, the women in her group asked her to teach. The little fellowship grew quickly from a few people to a point where the room would not hold them anymore.

Needless to say, when the pastor realized she was teaching by the anointing of the Holy Spirit, she received the “left foot of fellowship.” Like the woman in Mary Goddard’s group, the pastor thought she had to be a witch.

Over the years, I have also met women who are now practicing metaphysicians. Early in their lives, they had profound spiritual sensitivities. They were cruelly treated in their churches, so took a different spiritual path than the Christian women I interviewed.

Two thoughts I have always pondered: How many small groups of women are out there as 007's manifesting the gifts of the Spirit, but either having to do it secretly, or undergo attacks, or be driven away? Secondly, how many of the metaphysicians out there might have stayed on and grown in the work of the Holy Spirit if only their supposed shepherds had not been so spiritually underdeveloped?

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Thursday, August 16, 2007

Results of Speaking in Tongues Survey

These results of a survey on speaking in tongues are revealing. It is also sad because of all that people are missing in their walk with the Holy Spirit. Being a Christian and never discovering speaking in tongues is like being married and never discovering sex goes with it.

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Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Cast Out Demons, Heal the Sick and Get Lynched

Our teacher taught a timely message for me this week. To His disciples, Jesus laid out the outline for their ministry in Matthew 10. I think if I had been there and He had said, “I am giving you power over unclean spirits and you will heal the sick,” I would have jumped up and down shouting “hot diggity dog!”.

But then He said, “that’s the good news.” “And the bad news, Lord?” “Oh that,” the Lord would answer. "Well there is this little matter that they will deliver you up to councils and they will scourge you and you will be a lamb among wolves.”

The pastor pointed out though, that that model of ministry, was exactly how it went with Jesus Himself–cast out demons, heal the sick and get lynched. Because that is the pattern, along with this is the realization that as we follow in His footsteps, the rougher it gets, the more we know we are in His presence.

There was also some small print in the contract. He said to be as wise as a serpent, and as harmless as doves.

The reason this sermon was important to me was what was going on at that moment in my life. I have created a politically conservative blog for local Conservatives. My best friend was concerned that getting into the political arena cannot only put me among wolves but also turn me into one.

Sure enough that is exactly what happened. For several weeks I had fun. Then the night before church, the left wing bloggers in town discovered me. They attacked, including having my blog temporarily shut down. Because they were people I knew and who knew me, storms of emotions were unleashed in me--hurt, rage and desire for revenge.

Then at church, I had to ask myself, how much of this did I ask for, and how much was unfair? “Harmless as a dove” jumped out at me and I spent the time during the sermon going over every attack article I had written and repenting where needed. I came away refreshed and full of the goodness of the Lord. In the future, I promise to try to be both as harmless as a dove, but not giving up “wise as a serpent.”

I do believe the 2008 election is pivotal for Christians as well as for Israel and worth getting involved.

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Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Patricia King Under Attack

A ministry that is powerfully annointed by God is that of Patricia King. Amazing supernatural manifestations occur in her services. She is careful to always point what is taking place to Jesus. He gets the glory.

Over the past year, like all supernatural ministries, she has come under attack. Contacting her partners, she finally responded to each accusation. You can hear her defense on Extreme Prophetic with Patricia King. However, you have to first register on her webpage. Then click on “Watch Extreme Prophetic TV Now!”. Then go to "Extreme Moments" and click on the appropriate icon “Patricia King - Controversy.”

As she points out, every time God does a new thing, those who have settled into what meant a great deal to them, become uncomfortable and lash out. The test of any move of God is, does it lead people into a deeper relationship with Jesus?. One thing I know for certain is, people who become obsessed with attacking other ministries are not leading people deeper with our Lord.

Anyway, I sat down and wrote Patricia King the following e-mail

Dear Ms. King.
I watched your clip telling us about the lies being circulated about your ministry. I watched it all experiencing deep empathy and sorrow. I am a Board Certified Psychologist, an Anglican priest, a former Baptist minister, a retired university professor and a lifetime friend of the Rev. Charles Osborne. It was Father Osborne who turned me on to you

Spending my adult life doing psychotherapy tenderized me to psychological suffering. So I probably experienced more pain for you than you feel yourself. Anyway, I did go into intercessory prayer.

I know you realize that what is happening to you in these attacks goes with the territory. My son is a successful Rhema pastor, and no one suffered more attacks than his teacher, Kenneth Hagin. As you know, Hagin was called everything from new agey to heretic. Right now, I attend a Morningstar fellowship, and when I first heard of Rick Joyner and Googgled him, I knew he had to be on to something, as all I saw was him being accused of everything short of murder.

I know you had to let us who love your ministry know what was going on, but you have done it. As a minister and psychologist with over 45 years of experience behind me, I do hope you will take Jesus’ advice and now just shake the dust of your sandals off as a testimony against them.

Over the years watching Kenneth Hagin and Rick Joyner, I have never heard them waste a minute on their detractors. Please save your energy for your work.

Following Nehemiah,
“And I sent messengers unto them, saying, I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down: why should the work cease, whilst I leave it, and come down to you?” (Neh 6:3 )

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