Thursday, February 24, 2011

More Venom from the "Spirit-Filled" Camp


  "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law." - Galatians 5:21-23

"You will know them by their fruits." - Matthew 7:20

Chippy the Attack Gopher
on the rampage against
those mean ol' Pharisee types
who read their Bibles!
"How dare you question
the Mighty Prophet
Gopher,  heretic?!?!?"
Recently, a fellow Christian writer and biblical counselor and I were attacked online, for daring to question the veracity of extreme "deliverance ministries" (and those who set themselves up as "prophets"). What made this particular attack so odd was that neither he nor I commented with a critical spirit, challenged anyone to a debate, OR questioned the fruit of the individual's life. What we were questioning, (and quite objectively, I might add), was the aberrant theology being promoted. Neither of us said anything the least bit sarcastic or inflammatory, nor did we attempt to bait the blog owners. This rabid hatred completely blind-sided me -- from individuals claiming to be Christ-followers.

Moreover, on the basis of one reference to 1 Corinthians 11-14 (cessation of the sign gifts) and 2 Thessalonians (referring to the lying signs and wonders in the last days), I was then told I was "obviously not a Christian"; "could not be saved"; sarcastically dismissed for my polite tone; called "trite"; and accused of raising a "strawman" (sic). I think the writer meant "red herring" in this context, but I'll let that slide. This was on the basis of ONE COMMENT simply giving a hermaneutic frame of reference for the apologist's comment. As a newcomer to this particular blog, I deliberately worded my explanation as respectfully and diplomatically as possible, leaving rhetoric and argument out of it.

The attack on the other writer, who actually responded to the sneering and personal insults, was even worse. This hatefulness was on a "Christian" blog, from people who don't even know us. Sadly, we agreed with our attackers' mission - a ministry to ex-homosexuals (the blog exposes the lie of homosexuality, and gives the biblical truth to those coming out of this lifestyle). None of that mattered. We gave the (substantial) biblical proof of A) cessation of the sign gifts; B) that demonic deliverance in the Bible was an act of mercy, not a way of ridding sin; C) people are delivered from life-dominating sins by faith and repentance, NOT by the "casting out" of the demon of ____(fill in sin of choice).

None of that mattered. We dared touch the sacred cow of C. Peter Wagner's fictitious "Five-Fold Ministry", and thus were deemed worse than pagans. My most heinous offence? Suggesting that freedom from homosexuality was by repentance, rather than "supernatural deliverance complete with prophetic words of knowledge". How dare I question a Prophetess, who is now a Prayer/Intercessor/Fast-er (for a small donation to her ministry, of course). Never mind that no biblical prophet(ess) ever charged a cent for praying.

Most of my regular readers know that I am a nouthetic counselor in training, and am publishing a book about biblical repentance from eating disorders. Many of you have read my testimony, through my "Redeemed from the Pit" blog (where I get attacked, regularly, for having the audacity to call bulimia a sin). After being set free by the grace of God, after 17 years enslaved, I think I know something about the power of the Holy Spirit. (Despite the unwarranted and relentless attack by these rabid charismaniacs to the contrary). My colleague, the apologist? A "rock-throwing Pharisee-cum-Sadduccee". Again, the venom was poured out on us for no other crime than being cessationists, and holding a "Prophetess'" claims up to the light of Scripture (which 1 John 4:1 commands us to do). According to my Bible, God takes false prophets (and prophetesses) very, very seriously.

What these rabid, hate-filled, desperation-driven seekers of signs fail to realize is that when one makes an extra-biblical claim, the burden of proof is on them. An argument cannot be made from silence. The Lord Jesus said "repent and believe"; not "pray for a demon to be cast out and to receive an extra-biblical prophetic word". The Canon of Scripture is closed, but even if we agree to disagree on that, the proof is in the unChrist-likeness of their response. Jesus Himself said that " a man speaks out of the abundance of the heart".  Our words were "filled with grace and seasoned with salt" (Colossians 4:6), but the "Spirit filled Christians" responded with malice, slander and harshness. They returned goodwill with evil. They did not content themselves with a single snide remark, but continued to slander us even after we graciously bowed out of further dialogue. Hmm...they were filled with a spirit of something, that's for sure.

Rotten fruit simply doesn't grow from a good tree. I admit I'm perplexed and cannot explain where this evil comes from in ones who claim the Name of Christ, but a brief look at the three moderators' blogs revealed morbid prose about flesh burning off of bodies in hell, below-the-belt verbal assaults on other people, and an irrational (albeit unsupported) allegiance to the new-fangled idea that the office of Apostle has somehow been restored. Aha...so that's it, I thought. Pride....and a desire to be self-important. We inadvertently 'messed with' that idol, and now their feathers are all ruffled!' No doubt when they're passing out on the floors of their sanctuaries, barking like dogs or screaming gibberish, they think themselves oh-so-much holier than we mere students of the Word, and therefore are vindicated by cursing and damning us with no cause. Yes. So much holier.

By their fragrant fruits ye shall know them, indeed. They act just like their father.

The ultimate irony? One of the rabid 5-Folders has John Macarthur's "Grace to You" linked at the top of his homepage. I laughed out loud when I saw that -- Macarthur makes the two of us look like continuationists!!!

3 comments:

Ma ~ said...

Hi Marie,

This has been a topic of interest to me lately...the spiritual gifts. I lean cessassionistic, but am not too sure now..
Anyway, I too, have red flags about these deliverance ministries. I'm sorry about your experience. I find myself, that even our brothers and sisters in Christ get very defensive when something is challenged.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Not only am I being assailed by the charismaniacs, but the Beth Moore fans are about as mean and nasty as it gets.

This morning I received some e-mails from a Beth Moore fan who saysI am doing Satan's work, being divisive and breaking unity with the body of Christ. I am critical and arrogant and it makes her sick to read what I write. And I have a critical spirit in my heart that is demonic. And of course I am a legalistic Pharisee to boot. And that's only about half of what she said about me.

I guess no one likes to have false teachings exposed if they are the false teachings they follow. Expose everyone else's false teachings, just don't touch their particular aberrationl

Marie said...

Glenn,

I don't get half the attacks you do - but that is so unwarrented when you don't even comment on the person; but keep the discussion strictly on theology. They can't defend the aberrational teachings biblically, so they lash out and attack personally.

"You're a Pharisee" is supposed to be a conversation-stopper. Uh-huh....then I guess Christ Himself was a Pharisee of the first order, since He told those who falsely prophesied in His Name, "Away...I never knew you!"