Are We Really That Stupid?

So, I read C. Peter Wagner’s report (see my Blog entitled “Watch Out For That Iceberg”) and it states that the purpose of the ordination service in June was to bring Todd Bentley into “apostolic alignment”. Does anyone know what “apostolic alignment” is? Am I the only one clueless as to what that term means – and thus what he (Peter Wagner) was hoping they would accomplish on June 23, 2008?

Obviously it does not mean accountability as those he was being aligned with were not aware of his ongoing marriage problems and thought everything had been dealt with. They were also surprised what Todd announced his wife wanted a separation (now supposedly simply waiting the required 9 months to be officially divorced) and that he was handing over the leadership of Lakeland to his interns. So, accountability and apostolic alignment are not connected.

Obviously it does not mean being responsible either. Because Todd was certainly not being responsible in his marriage. Knowing you were and still are having marriage problem (for a number of years) and then going away on a ministry trip for 3 months is not being responsible no matter how many times your wife came, smiled, and stood next to you on the stage.

My concern is that apostolic alignment means that Todd came under the “covering” (there’s another vague Christian word that doesn’t work) of these three leaders – Che Ahn, John Arnott and Bill Johnson. This is good if it means accountability and responsibility but considering they were all surprised by Todd’s situation and announcement – obviously “covering” is lacking either in definition or in some practical aspect of implementation.

One hopes it simply was not a way for three ministries to connect to and benefit from ‘another anointing’ that could help their local “movements” regain some steam and bring them into the mainstream media once again.

Here’s another issue – they “ordained” him a five-fold evangelist” for this move of God. Not sure that is biblical. I thought local churches ordained – not self-appointed apostolic councils.

Again, not sure I understand the term “evangelist” because from what I have seen and heard on the internet he is not winning the lost nor training others to win the lost. Tasks of a five-fold evangelist. The Lakeland “revival” is another “bless the Christians” event with believers flying in from all over the world to receive another “God-jolt” like they go to Starbucks to receive a “Caffine-I’m really with it” jolt (does anyone really like their coffee?)

Have you heard Todd’s presentation of the Gospel. It is very “me-centered” and deals with blessings, prosperity, healing, deliverance, and numerous other things that God will do for you. The Bible gospel is apparently missing or just mentioned in passing. Things like sin, repentance, godly sorrow, Lordship, justification, sanctification, seeking God, fasting, prayer. I have literally not heard Todd mention the need to be rescued from the prospects of Hell where all sinners are going without Jesus and the need for a Saviour and a personal relationship with the Lord. Angels, visions, Emma, wind, big names from the past who are dead (yet seem to continue to communicate with us), third heaven visits, revelations, dreams, picking up other people’s anointings – but a little ‘light’ or absent when it comes to the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. So, I question the need to ordain him an evangelist for this “move of God” as he is not fulfilling the tasks of a five-fold evangelist.

One more – I though ministers of the Gopel were to represent the Lord and His heart for the lost and for the saints? I mean, we train young prophets and prophetic types that an accurate message is important but so is the way it is delivered – as it must express the character and nature of the Lord. Pastors are to express the care and compasion of the Great Shepherd. So drop-kicking a sick man, choaking a sick believer, punching someone so hard you knock a tooth out (just because Smith Wigglesworth did it does not make it right – for him or for Todd Bentley), yelling, screaming, telling God that you (Todd) are not done yet and commanding God to move on your behalf, pushing people over (the old pentecostal touch) – need I go on?

Doesn’t sound like, taste like, look like, feel like God to me. How about, let’s see now, flesh! Or maybe theatrics! Or “playing to the camera” or stupidity – ah, that’s the one. And how stupid can believers be and still breathe – they put up with all this “done in the name of the Lord” crap and called it “revival”.

Maybe I am out of step with the Church world but none of this appears to me to be god-like or Christ-honouring. Thus, I have not been to Lakeland and would not cross the street to receive whatever it is that people think Todd and his crew are serving up!

2 replies
  1. matt
    matt says:

    Apostolic alignment is taken from Wagner’s unique translation of Ephesians 4:11-12. The KJV says

    “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

    For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ”

    The Wagner version says

    “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

    For the alignment of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ”

    The former indicates that apostles, prophets etc are to train and bring all the people so that they can also build up one another. The later implies that they are to ensure that the people do what the apostles etc. tell them to do.

    Reply
  2. Ralph
    Ralph says:

    Matt,

    Thanks for answering a little of my question about “apostolic alignment”. At least, thanks to you I now know where Peter Wagner gets the word from – he made it up. Not sure we are any the wiser, however, about what went on June 23rd in Lakeland, Florida.

    Now, I’m not an expert in Greek but I have lots of books that help me and several computer programs … The word “equip” (I think I have written about this in my e-newsletter some time back in my articles on apostles) is “ketertismos” which means to “finish” as in “complete” some task, project or even bring a person to completion.

    It comes from the root word “katartizo” meaning to complete thoroughly, to repair or to adjust.

    I am at a complete loss to sort out how Peter Wagner managed to get the word “alignment” into that verse (Ephesians 4:12). It would not even fit when looking at the context of Ephesians 4:9-16.

    1> So, it is not there in the Greek.

    2> If the word ‘alignment’ could be used (and it can’t) you would not be bringing people into ‘apostolic’ alignment but into “five-fold ministry” alignment.

    3> The alignment would be for the equipping (training and releasing) of the saints and not for accountability or covering (I love that vague, no-meaning word we Christians throw about). No where in all that I have read did I see reference to John Arnott, Che Ahn or Bill Johnson talking about equiping, training, mentoring, discipling, training or releasing Todd Bentley. Not to mention they don’t hang around together enough to accomplish the task neither do they live close enough to each other.

    So, although we now know where Peter Wagner got the word from – he made it up, it seems – we are not the wiser what bringing someone into “apostolic alignment” really means.

    Jump in folks if you have an idea or have read something about it.

    Reply

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