Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing

Paul in talking to the elders of the church in the city of Ephesis warns them of wolves in sheep clothing. He states that they will come in from the outside and devastate the flock and that others will rise up from within the flock as well teaching twisted things with the intention of drawing followers to themselves and away from Jesus. Listen to the words inspired by the Holy Spirit and recorded in Acts 20:29-30 … “I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock. Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them.”

This was not just a warning for one local church in the time of Paul who was ministering as an apostle.This was recorded in Scripture as a warning to all local churches today. Beware of those believers – “even from your own number” – who distort and twist the truth for their own benefit and draw others away from following Jesus to following them. I see this happening daily today.

It is interesting that this took place just after Paul finished teaching the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:27). So, as an apostle he lays a foundation (Ephesians 2:20) and earnestly contends for the faith (Jude 3) and immediately upon departing external forces as well as internal forces arise to distort the truth he preached and are quick to gain an audience. Times have not changed. This still happens today all over the world.

Recently I discovered people who are “getting high on the Most High” as they do a man-made “manifestation called “smoking…” We have drinking in the Spirit and doing so from a make-believe barrel. We have people drinking Godka (God and Vodka) as well as smoking Jehovahwana (Jehovah and marijuana). It gets worse… There are numerous people teaching and promoting this “distortion of the truth” and even more – welcoming these teachers and teachings into their pulpits and churches.

And just when God is reestablishing truth to His Church – and birthing the ministry of apostles who will teach correct doctrine and lay proper foundations for the future expansion of the church.

One man teaching and leading this is John Crowder. He is headquarterd in the United States but is having a major impact in what are known as River Churches overseas in Eastern Europe and elsewhere. His teachings and man-made manifestions are heretical and grieve the Holy Spirit. However, many believe that what he teaches and demonstrates is a genuine move of the Holy Spirit similar to (and a continuation of) the manifestations recently seen and experienced during the renewal known as The Father’s Blessing and now moving forward around the world under various other banners.

Here’s the problem – at least one of them as there are many. People are having experiences that are spiritual in nature and finding either biblical or historical backing for the behavior as if this verifies that what is happening is really God. Instead they should be examining the fruit of the experience and what changes the experience has brought to their character (are they becoming more like Jesus) and whether or not they are more focused on seeking and saving the lost (Luke 19:10) and moving out into their world sharing Jesus and the Gospel of the Kingdom with others and seeing people truly converted and discipled. If these two things are not happening then we can validly question the manifestions that person is experiencing in their supposed walk with the Lord.

I believe it is time for apostles everywhere to stand up and warn the Church that there are wolves dressed up as and passing as sheep who have entered the flock (worldwide church) and there are others who have risen up from within the flock who are leading many well-meaning believers and leaders astray from the apostolic teachings of Scripture. They are smooth in their presentations, slick in their manner, and good at making their teachings appear biblical. And, due to the lack of discernment and the fact that most believers have a poor working knowledge of the Scriptures many are being deceived and the lost continue to march into Hell second-by-second as the sheep are distracted from the mandate of the Lord to His Church.

Time to wake up and recognize the deception for what it really is – demonic!

3 replies
  1. sheila carpenter
    sheila carpenter says:

    AMEN!! this needs to be preached loud and clear. I was in a church setting a couple of weeks ago that is supposed to be an apostolic/prophetic church…the children’s pastor is buying and handing out the “chicken soup for the soul” books…written by two occultists with a very thin “christian” veneer…a young woman there had a copy of an Andrew Weil book…leading occultist who speaks at every new age gathering…”somewhere over the rainbow” was piped into the audio before the service…from wizard of oz by a theosophy follower…what a mess!!!!! even so, LORD JESUS, come quickly !!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  2. Paul Esplanado
    Paul Esplanado says:

    Do you think it’s stupid to attack a man you’ve never met nor attended one of his meetings, who preaches the finished works of the cross more than 99% of Christendom, just because you’ve read a blog or two about him written by critical haters? Do you think a man whose led over 100,000 people to Christ, written four orthodox books, has planted churches, takes care of the poor, planted orphanages, sees people delivered from decades of drug addictions and even sees miraculous healings of cancer by the power of Christ … do you think he deserves yet another attack from a misinformed critic? John Crowder is all about the finished work of Christ. So what if he playfully uses terms like “Jesus is a better high than drugs”?? Billy Graham and Arthur Blessitt and many people used to use that kind of terminology to reach young people in the ’70s. I’m not going to argue with you … I can tell you’re probably an argumentative person and will refute this comment after I post it. Whatever you say, I will not reply because these types of critical blogs bore me and I’ll never visit it again. But I would encourage folks to check out Crowder for themselves at http://www.thenewmystics.com

    Reply
  3. Ralph
    Ralph says:

    Hi Paul,
    I hope you do revisit my site and read my reply to your comment on this blog. I have listened to John’s teachings and read his New Mystics book. I have not visited any web sites that are critical towards John Crowder but have visited his site and listened closely to some of the teaching he has posted on that site. AND, I have worked in areas in Eastern Europe where he has ministered. And those who buy in to his “manifestations” are the ones we are now dealing with in local churches due to their actions, beliefs, lack of submission to leadership, rebellious approach to the Church, and their grieving and quenching of the Holy Spirit. These people mock God. In one case, we actually had to remove a man from both the leadership and the church.
    These are not “manifestations” of the Spirit. A manifestation happens when the Holy Spirit comes upon a person and the human being reacts to the power of the Spirit. In the case of smoking and drink in the Spirit these are initiated by man and so are not manifestations but simply works of the flesh.
    You are justifying and verifying a man’s ministry by the activities of that ministry – his “acts of righteousness” (Matthew 6:2) where the proper way to judge is by his teachings which are anything by Orthodox and by what remains where he leaves an area after ministering. In my experience it has been disrespect, rebellion, conflict, and behavior that is not Christ-like.
    As a life-long fan of Billy Graham and someone who has followed Arthur Blessitt’s ministry for years I totally disagree with you. Neither man would offend the Holy Spirit – grieving and quenching Him – as John Crowder does. I can not think of one time when I have heard or read anything that would link their terminology and approach to that of this man.
    So, I stand by my comments and simply wanted you to know that they are based on my experiences with the aftermath of his ministry, a review of his teachings (web and book), and an understanding of godly behavior and the basics of the Christian faith.
    My task as an apostle is to lay proper doctrinal foundations (Ephesians 2:20), to defend the faith (Jude 3) and to protect the sheep. That is exactly what I am doing here in North America and in every other nation where I minister.
    I too encourage people to check out John Crowder’s ministry for themselves and, if they have a decent grasp of the Christian faith, know their Bible, and fellowship with the Holy Spirit they will come to the same conclusions as I have.

    Reply

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