I have been accused by a number of people over the last few months of being critical and judgmental. I have been criticized for being critical – interesting! And those who have criticized me – are they not also being critical? Several have told me that the Church does not need “heresy hunters” and I could not agree more.
However, what the Church absolutely needs is apostles who will speak up for the truth. 1 John 4:1 tells us “not to believe every spirit but to try or test the spirit to see if it is from God” – lines up with the Word of God. Good test. 1 Thessalonians 5:21 states that we are to “prove all things; hold fast that which is good.” Good advice! I thought that this is what I have been doing.
This is not hunting heresies – although, as one tests the teachings coming forth from places like Lakeland one just might discover heresies. Then what do I do – sit down and shut up? Or, do I “ernestly contend for the faith once delivered to the saints” (Jude 3)? The latter, of course, in spite of what some may think and what others believe my motives to be.
As an apostle – little known and enjoying not being in any specific spotlight – it is my job to make sure that non-biblical teachings are exposed for what they are – false teachings that can simply be false teachings or, more dangerous than that, heresies. This is part of the work of apostles as they lay foundations and correct faulty foundations (Ephesians 2:20).
Excuse my chasing a rabbit but – where were all the big names who should have been speaking out about behaviour and doctrine that were not correct almost from the beginning? Why were the red flags not flying over the past few months when much of what was being taught and done was not in line with God’s Word or God’s character? Where were those well known apostles who could have corrected this before it blew up and wounded so many? Maybe if they had spoken up then people like J. Lee Grady of Charisma, Terry Somerville, and Currie Blake and little guys like me would have not had to.
After 32 years of daily Bible study and reading – research and reflection – I believe I have armed my spirit and my mind with a fair amount of God’s Word so that it can spot the false almost instantly. And, I believe I have a decent enough walk with the Holy Spirit that I am sensitive to His warnings as well … that anointing within that leads to truth as spoken of by John in his first of three letters. So, my warning flags have been up from the very beginning. Now, I will be accused of pride and arrogance!
So, with my decent knowledge of the Word and the unction of the Holy Spirit within me – I check everything that I hear taught and see done to the scriptures. This is what the Bereans did as recorded in Acts 17 … and it is what I do as an apostle.
Really, all believers should be doing this simply as believers and they should not be leaving this important task up to the apostles. However, because apparently a lot of believers don’t do this, then it is imperative that those in the five-fold ministry do it for them so that the sheep are protected from false doctrine and maybe even false five-fold ministers who do wonderful signs and wonders (Matthew 24:24). Please note – I did not call Todd Bentley a “false” miniister, evangelist, or whatever. Simply that the sheep, because they seem to be lacking discernment in our day and age, need protecting.
Lakeland had a lot going for it – strong teaching of the Word of God and correct teaching of the Word of God were not among the strong points. So, it is up to others to point out the errors and to state where teachings based on experiences with dead saints, third heavens, winds blowing, an angel called Emma, visions and dreams, revelations and other subjective events simply do not line up with the scriptures and doctrine once delivered to the saints or go contrary to the stated truth. The Bible is our standard – onjective, not subjective (see my blogs on spiritual warfare within the church).
If that makes me a “heresy Hunter” in your eyes – so be it. But I will continue to guard the sheep and speak for the truth as contained in the Bible regardless of which big name or big event that pits me against. I must be faithful to the God who rescued me from the pit of Hell and I will defend His Word and His character.
If I am wrong in my doctrine and my concern for the often ungodly way things were done at Lakeland – those things that I have been honest enough to speak up about – then show me. I am a good listener and will humbly submit to His truth even if it means admitting I am wrong.
But, meanwhile, let’s stop calling those who contend for the truth “Bible Police”, “Heresy Hunters” and whatever else I have been called (some edited out due to being inappropriate for a Christian blog before I allowed it to be posted). Let’s dialogue – that’s what the box below this last paragraph is for – for you to express your opinion and interact with what is being discussed by the many who post comments on this site.
I look forward to hearing from you!