Monday, August 11, 2008

Council in Lakeland

It didn't take long after the Lakeland Outpouring began in April for certain issues to rise to the surface and eventually cause such a division among Spirit-filled believers that many referred to it as a potential "charismatic civil war." At the core were such issues as extra-biblical doctrine, overemphasis on angelic encounters and necromancy. And as so easily happens in this age of armchair quarterbacks, the blogosphere lit up in fervent debate. Heresy hunters feasted on any proof-less claims and foundation-less doctrines. Defenders railed against a lack of spiritual discernment among the "revival police." And everyday inquisitors were stuck with a truck-load of questions mingled with a sincere desire to stay in step with what God was doing.

As the debates climaxed, few realized that behind the scenes a group of leaders representing various parts of the Spirit-filled community were dialoguing about these same issues—albeit usually in a more civilized tone. Though the names of those involved changed, the goal remained the same: to create an apostolic council that, despite personal differences and preferences, was willing to address these core issues and bring biblical order to the situation. Those tuned in to GOD TV's daily broadcast of the Lakeland meetings got a taste of this in late June when Peter Wagner organized a night to apostolically commission evangelist Todd Bentley.

Now, more than a month later, Wagner is releasing a report documenting the council's findings so far. There isn't much "new news" contained in what he's written—even for those hearing about this for the first time—and I have to be honest, I severely question both the breadth of representation within the council and the criterion for "apostleship" among the group. However, the document does reveal at least two positive things: 1) Though the Lakeland Outpouring may dwindle, leaders are fully aware that these issues will linger long after the crowds subside and therefore need to be adequately addressed, if not resolved; and 2) Leaders are determined to address the issues of Lakeland—and those ongoing ones affecting the entire charismatic movement, for that matter—in a healthy, orderly and biblical manner.

So ... after reading through it, what do you think?

---------------------------------------------------------------------

THE LAKELAND APOSTOLIC FINDINGS
From the Lakeland Outpouring Apostolic Team
Written by C. Peter Wagner, Convening Apostle
(As of 8-11-08)

Introduction

Few events in recent church history have drawn as much national and international attention as the Lakeland Outpouring, May-August 2008, led by evangelist Todd Bentley and his Fresh Fire Ministries team. A key factor contributing to this unusual phenomenon has been the decision of Rory and Wendy Alec to use GOD TV to televise the revival meetings internationally.

As would be expected, true to the history of revivals, a powerful move of God like this inevitably draws serious attacks from the enemy and his forces of darkness. One outcome is a range of reactions to the phenomenon from those who focus on the hand of God in the ministry to those who focus on the damage that the enemy is doing. Because of the unprecedented number of people who have been affected one way or another by Lakeland and because of instant communication through technology, opinions and points of view easily become public domain, and the body of Christ can readily become polarized, which, of course, would be a victory for the enemy.

Unfortunately, in the case of Lakeland, the enemy has been succeeding, more than he should, in producing widespread confusion and even chaos throughout large segments of the body of Christ.

Throughout the early weeks of the Outpouring I watched it from time to time on TV, I followed the news items and rejoiced at what God was doing in Lakeland, but the matter was located toward the bottom of my priority scale. I also became aware of a rising number of criticisms and concerns about what was going on there, but I had very little interest in absorbing or analyzing them. This changed when I received a telephone call from Apostle Stephen Strader, Pastor of Ignited Church, and host of the Lakeland Outpouring. Stephen called me as the Presiding Apostle of the International Coalition of Apostles (ICA) of which he was a member. From first hand observation he described both the blessings and harsh opposition that they had begun to experience. Then he said, “Where are the apostles?”

I believe the Holy Spirit spoke to me at that moment and said words to the effect, “Peter, you will need to answer that question.” As I have written in my books, one of the roles of an apostle is to set things in order and another is to assure that the body of Christ is operating on the basis of sound, biblical doctrine. There was no question about the need—disorder reigned, and many of the Lakeland doctrines as well as practices were being called into question on an international scope. I believe that I was given a divine assignment that I hadn’t even desired, namely to attempt to bring some kind of apostolic order to this widespread and potentially damaging confusion.

While I was talking to Stephen, God kept bringing the word “alignment” to the front of my mind, so I questioned him on Todd Bentley’s apostolic alignment. The upshot was that Todd believed in apostles and prophets, but he had never entered into a formal alignment. I did some more investigation over the next couple of days, and I was assured that this was indeed the case.

As the picture developed, there were two pressing needs. One was to facilitate apostolic alignment for Todd and the other was to deal responsibly with the doctrinal and ministry style issues being discussed. Then the question became, Which should come first? Meanwhile I had been discussing these things with several friends, all of whom were also members of ICA and whose opinion I highly respected. I immediately discovered to my surprise that many of my friends had formed highly-charged and emotionally intense opinions. Some were advising me not to go to Lakeland to promote a formal alignment until the doctrinal issues first had been resolved. Others took the opposite position. I carefully considered what they said and weighed the pros and cons as best I could.

My thinking was that I did not want to deal with doctrinal issues with any one but fellow apostles. I had recently attempted a similar process that had to do with a certain prophet, and I had failed in accomplishing my goal of bringing about a reconciliation of opposing parties. I felt that one of my mistakes had been attempting to deal directly with a prophet who was not aligned with me instead of dealing with an apostle with whom this person was in fact aligned. I certainly knew that I did not want to attempt to work directly with an evangelist such as Todd Bentley, especially one whom I had never met. If Todd was not apostolically aligned, this alignment needed to be formalized before I was prepared to go any further. I am well aware that some friends thought I should have stopped right there and pulled out. Perhaps I should have, but I felt that I would be disobeying the word from the Holy Spirit if I did. Some of my friends have not yet forgiven me for not taking their advice, and, who knows? Someday they might be telling me, “I told you so!”

Regardless, I knew that alignment needed to come first. Chuck Pierce, with whom I am closely aligned prophetically, wholeheartedly agreed. I did my due diligence and discovered that Ché Ahn was the ICA member who had the closest contact with Todd, and that Todd was willing to accept this alignment. Ché felt that he should bring in Bill Johnson and John Arnott since all three of them were close to Todd and they lead the newly-formed Revival Alliance. Unbelievably, all four of us had one date in common open all summer, Monday, June 23, so we decided that we would propose it to Todd. He enthusiastically agreed and invited us to come.

By now the word was getting out and I was receiving a quantity of email correspondence from other apostles who were interested. I opened the door for those who desired to accompany us on the platform. I did not allow prophets, evangelists pastors, or teachers to join the group—apostles only. A total of 17 apostles participated representing three apostolic streams: ICA, Revival Alliance, and Morning Star (Rick Joyner).

The Alignment Ceremony

My role in the ceremony was to facilitate Todd’s alignment with the three from Revival Alliance, who would then commission Todd as the evangelist to the Lakeland Outpouring. The others were invited to join in with short prayers or prophecies as led.

I need to explain a couple of things at this point, because it turns out that some have misunderstood what I have just said. Some have thought that Todd is aligned with me, which is not the case. He is not a member of ICA. We are barely aquainted. Please note that purposely I have never come out and defended Todd against any of the accusations. I have attempted to maintain neutrality in order to deal with the issues as objectively as possible.

Some have said that my very appearance in the ceremony constituted a de facto endorsement of the Lakeland Outpouring. I anticipated that this would be the case, and I felt I had to take the risk because I knew of no other way to proceed. So while it was an endorsement, I in no way meant it to imply that I was endorsing Lakelands’s side of the controversial issues. For one thing I couldn’t do that because I had not yet investigated them as I am doing now. I felt that the proper protocol was alignment first. However, I did feel, and still do, that what was wrong with the Outpouring should be corrected if at all possible rather than rejected out of hand.

Others wondered if this was an ICA event. It was not. However, I cannot separate myself from my role as the ICA leader, and I so identified myself in my paper. Thirteen of the 17 apostles on the platform were ICA members, and they agreed that Todd would be better with formal apostolic alignment than without it.

I have been scolded by some for making an apostolic decree at the end of my presentation. They may be right. However, I believe in apostolic alignment so much, that my thought was that Todd would be blessed more after the alignment than before. Take note also that I mentioned a heightened level of discernment between truth and error which obviously has been called for.

The vows of alignment with Ché, Bill, and John led to Todd’s commissioning. Ché Ahn was in charge of this. Notice that the only ones who laid on hands and commissioned were the three of them. Several prayed and prophesied. I want to make it clear that I did not commission Todd as some wrongly think. I didn’t lay on hands, I didn’t anoint with oil, in fact I moved to the back and neither my wife, Doris, nor I prayed or prophesied. I did this intentionally because I knew I would be wrongly positioned for the second part of my assignment if I did.

With the alignment completed, I was ready to go on with the second part of the assignment, namely attempting to bring order out of the confusion concerning doctrines and ministry practices

Bringing Order to the Issues

I felt that I needed a team of apostles who were willing to work with me in order to identify the concerns that had been brought up, define them as carefully as possible, and come to an opinion that could be issued to the public. Ten other apostles have agreed to work with me in this project: Ché Ahn, Bill Johnson, John Arnott, Chuck Pierce, Stephen Strader, Lee Grady, David Cannistraci, Steve Strang, Jeff Beacham, and Joe Askins.

One of our first tasks was to develop a “Lakeland Spectrum” in order to help individuals concerned to know where they stood as over against others. We have a five point spectrum (1) Strong approval, (2) Concerned approval, (3) Neutral, (4) Conditional disapproval, (5) Strong disapproval. The members of our apostolic team range from 1 to 4.5, so we have a range of perspectives.

We have been working on sorting out what we now have, and the list is down to 24 issues. We are taking this very seriously, and we understand that the process will take time. When we arrive at our conclusions we will release them to the public. John Arnott will be the point person to review our findings with Todd Bentley and the Fresh Fire Board of which he is a member.

We will add to this report of the findings as soon as possible . . . .

Comments:
Let me see if I undestand this man correctly. First I will copy and paste a quote from his printed message
" I in no way meant it to imply that I was endorsing Lakelands’s side of the controversial issues. For one thing I couldn’t do that because I had not yet investigated them as I am doing now. I felt that the proper protocol was alignment first."
In light of those words, are he and other so-called respected christians standing up and accepting him into their organization's beliefs (alignment) without even knowing what his are? Did they investigate any of the healings which, I believe from what has been written, are not validated by medical personal except from what is held in their hand and waved around? Are these guys for real? What happens if the whole thing turns into a hoax and the majority of these healed people reveal they were paid? Not that I am saying that but these "Christian pros" have just given him the holy handshake. I am a bit confused on that. I am just joe lunchbucket off the street but I believe I know enough to not lay hands on just anybody and give them a blessing. What are some other thoughts? Am I missing something here?
 
"Ten other apostles have agreed to work with me in this project: Ché Ahn, Bill Johnson, John Arnott, Chuck Pierce, Stephen Strader, Lee Grady, David Cannistraci, Steve Strang, Jeff Beacham, and Joe Askins."

This whole thing reeks of stupidity especially that all these fools are Apostles! Since when?

What do you want from deceived demonized ones? Not brains!
 
You talk about covering their butts! This guy is so full of himself and his titles and his position of authority it is just bewildering that people can be so arrogant and pompous!

Who made any of them apostles? Who determined their authority? Who do they think they are?

They certainly do not represent Christ and nor do they represent other believers.

They are simply covering up their tracks for the mess that they endorsed in Lakeland. Very sad and very pathetic.

So much for having discernment.

It is all a comedy of errors. Who could have imagined a worse case scenario for these people.

God tripped them up in their own self importance and grand standing. It really looks good on them.

No need to wonder or second guess why I gave up on the church system and the ordained ministry almost a decade ago, and embraced house church and simple New Testament Christianity and community.

Cheers,
Sam,
Waterloo, ON.
Canada
 
wow. this gets rather complexed. i think i'll stick to telling people about Jesus....something about "the simplicity that is in Christ..."
oh well, love you guys and be blessed.
somebody had to do it
 
This is as strange as the commissioning itself. These guys have let the body of Christ down while lifting themselves up. I'll stick to Jesus and trying to walk in humility.
 
What I think is we are now seeing this group of self appointed Apostles deserting the 'Bentley ship' before it goes under completely.

The fact that this letter just so 'happened' to be sent out on the same day its announced that Bentley left his wife, is to the logical mind, no coincidence.
 
Wowser! That has to be one of the stupidest statements that I've ever read on anything! I have lost all respect for "apostle" Peter Wagner. He really ought to retire and disolve the entire organization or perhaps gift it to Rick Joyner of the very kooky Morningstar Ministries. I guess "Apostle" Stephen Strader can really found to be credible after endorsing 30 resurrections from the dead, none of which can be verified. I do really like the one about the dead guy who knocked from inside his coffin and wanted out...He praised God and Todd Bentley...Yeah sure! This whole thing is just so absurd and certainly not a part of the kingdom of God. Did I read that statement right that Lee Grady is now an Apostle?
 
Where it is stated that Bentley left his wife?
 
It's true. Bentley and his wife are separated and say that there is no promise that their marriage can be reconciled. He has an anointing to raise the dead and can't promise that God can raise a dead marriage! The info is posted on his site and there will be no revival meetings around the country apparently. I guess the same people who overlooked all the doctrinal and manifestation errors in Lakeland will brush this away also. This is not to point the finger of condemnation but to say when will we expect more from our leaders?
 
Honestly...........what were these leaders thinking when they publicly endorsed, yes endorsed this "outpouring" without first doing a thorough examination. It's too little, too late. The average church-member knew a long time ago that this stuff was goofy, and unbiblical. I know an intercessor who had a dream 7 years ago about this whole thing-that is was false signs and wonders and it would release a spirit of delusion in the earth. The place for "alignment" is in private, not in public, bringing even more confusion to the body of Christ. Read Acts 15 about a true apostolic council. This just shows me the need for repentance all around for the church-we need to RETURN TO THE BIBLE! and to JESUS!
 
So sad to see the collateral damage of bad theology: broken relationships. http://religion.theledger.com/default.asp?item=2248784
 
The comment from wallbuilder that so many "regular" people on the pew or "little" leaders called it was it was while big names embraced it. People, listen to the voice of the Spirit when He says, this is not Me! We can trust his guidance.
 
Amen to the fact that Peter Wagner can call it what he wants, but he endorsed it. Thank God for so many of us who stood firm by our biblical beliefs and the voice of the Spirit. These leaders really messed this one up bad and this was no small matter. Perhaps they should just say, "we were wrong." Instead, we dance the dance of well that is not exactly what I meant. Thank God that He is strong enough to work in the world in spite of the our embarrassing blunders. I am not ashamed of the Gospel, but I am ashamed that the Lakeland Ledger could report this before the world.
 
Whether, the "apostolic" council finds things out to be questionable or not. i spent two weeks there and I have no complains. Just shows how human we are, its a historic fact that revival brings separation I pray that the Body of Christ doesn't abandon Todd and the ministry like we did at the Cross with Jesus. Most likely we will flee the scene and say told you so. And then we find out in heaven it was in fact the Lord. Just pray for insight ,wisdom and revelation for the investigation team and council. We are partnering with the enemy if we begin to accuse and thats all the devil wants.
 
Can I pay 600 dollars and become an Apostle? I would very much like to have the power of alignment and the ability to loosen a cash flow that would allow me to live like Benny, in the lap of luxury. Alignment reminds me of that song... "When the moon is in the seventh house and Jupiter aligns with Mars and peace will guide the planets and love will steer the stars....
 
I usually stay out of this stuff but I'm compelled to say something regarding the comments I have just read.

I find that the majority of them are harsh, critical, and the spirit in which they are given in un-Biblical.

I respect people's right to disagree with Todd Bentley or Dr. Wagner but many of these comments are not given in a spirit of love towards our brothers in Christ, nor with a humble passion for truth.

To those who have commented and who plan to comment after me - I encourage you to speak with grace and love rather than with insults and 'rantings'.

Your brother in Christ.
 
I do want to add that I believe we should be discerning about things and I'm deeply saddened by the recent developments with Todd and his wife.

My prayers are for reconciliation in their relationship
 
Wagner and Co are flakes and should be avoided.
 
I especially liked your comment about bloggers being armchair quarterbacks. That's amusing.

So are we to assume by your analogy that bloggers aren't really "in the game" and that they just sit around speculating about the game?
 
I made an earlier comment that I know I gave in a right spirit. I think we have to speak boldly but speak the truth in love. Praise God if some went to the revival and had no complaints. But, there were a lot of issues there that needed to be addressed. Even the Apostolic covered "narrowed" it down to 24 issues and they are divided on them. I feel as those of us who have issues with Lakeland are often considered quenchers of the Spirit. Then, Jesus was too because He addressed a lot of things that needed addressing.

I, too, pray that Todd and his wife will get out of ministry for a while and minister to their marriage. I don't have much hope for that since the statement on his website says basically we are praying for healing but this does not mean reconciliation will occur. Those two need to sit down with a true Christian mediator and say where do we need to die so Christ can live? We want to honor him with our marriage, not just our ministry. Sorry, but I don't see a lot of dying today. Lots of hoopla, but not much dying. I pray that I and all of us will not sing "It's all about You", but will live it.
 
I am saddened and angered that Christians would wish another Christian or anyone, for that matter, ill. And further to celebrate another persons misery. Little wonder it is difficult to bring people into the church - they don['t have to come to church and tithe, they can get battered anywhere for free
 
I have been a Christian for 56 years. I have been a pastor, evangelist, minister of youth and music, been on radio and TV and a teacher, among other things. I have a BA and ThM degrees. I have been used in the gifts of the Spirit, experienced many salvations and healings in my ministry. I have seen multitudes slay in the Spirit [not pushed over by me, slain by the Spirit]. However, I do not feel that I should be called a "prophet" or an "apostle" nor do I feel I should be appointed one by anyone on this earth. With all of the pressures of the ministry my wife and I will celebrate 48 years of marriage in a few days. The true anointing of God will never tear a family apart....it will only make it stronger. When God begins to pour out His spirit in great revival we need to leave the hype to worldly events and let God spread the good tidings of what is being done. We also need to be very cautious in seeing that things are not done that do not line up with the Scripture. When that begins to happen they it needs to be brought into line or the "revival" shut down. There needs to be unquestionable verification of any and ALL miracles that are reported. I pray the good that has been done will be long lasting....but I also pray that the error will be called what it is and corrected. En agape....An Older Saint
 
We have had two local pastors attend the Lakeland revival twice, and have brought back the outpouring of the Spirit to our area. Regular meeting are going on and many are being saved, anointed, healed, delivered as a result. We praise God for His blessings in our lives as a result of the Lakeland revival. Wish we could have attended ourselves, but these local meetings are very positive results of God power and blessing. Thank God that Todd Bentley responded to God call to this powerful ministering in Florida.
 
Being a Christian is never dull. You learn something new everyday. I've been a minister/chaplain for a long time and was originally an evangelist. But this is the first time I have ever heard of being required to have "Apostolic Alignment" in order to have your minstry protected. While I've been baptized in The Holy Spirit, which is given by God, I didn't realize that I needed this extra touch from men who appointed themselves as "apostles" and whose approval was necessary in order to do God's work. I thought it was God Who made these appointments and it was God Whose approval we are to seek.
The next time I go in to get my car aligned, I will check to see if there is an 'apostle' on duty that can align me at the same time. Perhaps they will give me a twofer deal.
Rev. Austin Miles
California
 
Glen, thanks for your insight. I agree with your line of thought. I'm 31 years old, I've been to Bible college, have parents in the ministry, and have done smaller things myself. I have been waiting for those who are seasoned in the Lord to put out some sort of statement to either endorse or reject the Lakeland debacle. Thus far, it hasn't really happened, and I'm wondering why. I don't want to be too harsh in my judgments toward others, but I cannot say that I'm pleased with what I've seen from Bro. Bentley. My foremost issue is that of disrespect for the Holy Spirit. The second would be extra-biblical doctrine. Those 2 reasons alone are enough to turn me in the opposite direction. I do, however, hope that Godly intervention will take place for him. He obviously has a large following, and the Lord could work through him in another way if he is open to it.
 
I have been a Christian for many years. Christians are great for their "talk", but we need more work on the "walk". If God can heal the sick, raise the dead, and deliver us from our sins (and HE can!), then He can also bring healing to a broken marriage. On improving the walk, we should pray for Todd Bentley that God will intervenne. God is able to do a miracle not only for Todd Bentley but also in and through Todd Bentley. I pray for the name of Jesus to be lifted up. He is bigger than Cancer, bigger than disease, bigger than us and all of our problems. God says that HE "hates divorce", and His Word has not changed. Now is not the time to give up, but to pray for Todd as the early church prayed for the Apostle Peter. God is faithful! I pray that Todd and his wife will be obedient to the Word of God. We should pray and fast for their deliverance.
 
When driving home from the Pensicola renewal I questioned the Lord about concerning the length of the revival and He said to me "It will last untill men change the order I have established from the beginning" which reminded me of William DeArteaga's book "Quenching the Spirit" which examines centuries of opposition to the Moving of the Holy Spirit. "God is sovereign" and will not share "His glory" with any man....We certainly live in a world where we are "weathering an unprecedented season of moral failure and spiritual compromise". Our only hope is God's mercy and grace poured out on a praying people....D.D. Kerrville, Tx.
 
Peter, that was a tough job. Thanks for approaching it as delicately and respectfully as you did. The Church is richer because of your ministry!
 
John Wesley once said, "Lord, bring revival witout defects. But if that isn't possible, bring revival defects and all."

I personally know two drug addicts set free and on fire for God from going to the meetings in Lakeland. Many other revivals have started out of this. Pray that the Holy Spirit uses this revival to spawn even more.

p.s I don't carry rocks as I'm not without sin.
 
I recently attended the outpouring and the spirit presence was incredible. If you turned away from the altar and began to look out into the crowd it became incredibly strong. When i turned back towards the altar it was about the weight of a good spirit filled service.

I believe that God was telling me that the annointing was for the people to take with them and that if we have our eyes turned out or towardsothers it will increase.

The rest of it has become unfortunately alot like church. God exalts and God abases. And the fact that He chose to use an imperfect vessel like Todd Bentley encourages me. Religion uses control and criticism masked in "discernment."

I have complete faith in the fact that that I serve a very real God and that means there is a very real devil and he is a very mean %$#@!!~!

It does not surprise me that in the wake of this that this man, Todd Bentley's, House has been attacked and the weaknesses exposed. Todd is not perfect (i do not know him personally) and neither am I. His wife is not perfect and neither is mine. In both homes there is strugle and unfortunately at times division.

We are never on the same page at all times in a marriage and sometimes we become frustrated and hopeless. I use the analogy of marriage is alot like living on a ship. Some days are sunny and we are on deck enjoying the cruise and other days its more like, "Oh my God look at the storm and all the waves.

Once again we are attacking the body and validating cancer within our church. Todd lifts up the name of Jesus and cannot control any falsely claimed healings or credit for any legitimate ones. Its all Jesus.

So...before you attack me please put down your stones and thank Jesus for all that He has done through this Global Outpouring and pray for Todd and Shonna. In that we are the body of Christ and we are becoming more like Jesus.

God Bless everyone of you and God Bless Todd and Shonna and FreshFire Ministries for stepping out in faith even though they too are imperfect.

Brad Herman
 
WOW!!! The Million Dollar Todd Bentley Hoax!!! WOW!!!
Todd says God told him to get 1,000 people to give $1,000 dollars. When people confronted Todd, Todd admitted that God did not say that. WOW!!!
Proof positive that Todd Bentley is spiritually abusing everyone.
Todd Bentley is EXPOSED as a LIAR and a THIEF!!!
http://blog.trentonadams.ca/2008/07/31/the-hidden-darkness-is-exposed/

I hope I don’t sound like I’m laughing at this situation, as God hates divorce (Malachi 2:14-15). But, like IST, I find this situation highly ironic, in that Bentley claims that God is working through him to work “signs and wonders,” yet God can’t manage to put the Bentleys’ marriage back together.
 
If these so called apostles were running a company it is one whose shares i would not purchase.People with the gift of disernment have been screaming at their TV screens for months(Godtv when will you issue an apology?)God is speaking into this situation,listen to the authentic prophets and ignore the exteme prophetic and their foolishness.Church quit the foolishness there is a world to be won for the Saviour.
 
I read all the comments...how quickly we are to judge. I watched the revival on TV and actually went to the Louisville meeting. Wither it was all excitement or not...it changed me. It placed in me a hunger for Jesus not a revival but Jesus.

I pray for Todd and his family, I know that God's grace is sufficient and while we are so quick to judge and condemn him...what gives us the right? The church should be praying for him, his wife, and especially his children.

I grew up in a charismatic church and when I hit my teenage years walked away because I felt that Christians were judgmental and hypocritical. I looked to people and not Jesus. I came back to Jesus when the consequences of my sin had caught up with me. He made right was wrong and showed me that His love is enough. I've had a hard time with church and it's taken me years to feel comfortable going. Let's stop being religious and start becoming more like Jesus. Revival will come when we as a church stop looking at ourselves, others, and start wanting Jesus.

My prayer is that we stop blaming our brothers and sisters, that we reach out in love and compassion. That's who my Savior is and nothing has taken place that He was not aware of. He still loves Todd Bentley and He still has a plan and purpose for his life. He has forgiven Mr. Bentley 2000 years ago. He isn't angry at those who supported this outpouring, he is not an angry God. His anger was poured out on the cross. Those who supported this revival for the right reasons, will not be deterred by human frailty but they will turn even more to the One Who Is The Answer. We need to stop throwing stones and lift Todd Bentley in prayer.
 
It is amazing how similar some brethren sound to hounding wolves.
May I salute Bill Johnson, Che Ahn and others who have been put in a very difficult position but have chosen not to abandon Todd Bentley but walk him through this. And Bill Johnson has taken care to state that Peter Wagner in no way endorsed the revival. The video clip is available on his site.

Furthermore, can we please be clear on the fact that the anointing is one thing, character issues are another, and quite obviously Todd has those to sort out. This was his Achilles's heel and it has dealt him a severe blow. Perhaps we can now go on to show Christlikeness and pray for restoration, let the same who preach David every weekend now acknowledge that perhaps Todd too will repent, find forgivess and be restored.

How many of those who flocked to Lakeland covered this young man and his family in prayer? I address this at length on my blog www.bolaoged.com. And how many of those pouring vitriol on him today can have their own sins exposed publicly without casting opprobrium on the name of Christ? Beware a pharisaical spirit. Truly brethren, let him who is without sin cast the first stone. This is a sad day for the church, let us mourn, but not gloat, it is too unbecoming.
 
It is amazing how similar some brethren sound to hounding wolves.
May I salute Bill Johnson, Che Ahn and others who have been put in a very difficult position but have chosen not to abandon Todd Bentley but walk him through this. And Bill Johnson has taken care to state that Peter Wagner in no way endorsed the revival. The video clip is available on his site.

Furthermore, can we please be clear on the fact that the anointing is one thing, character issues are another, and quite obviously Todd has those to sort out. This was his Achilles's heel and it has dealt him a severe blow. Perhaps we can now go on to show Christlikeness and pray for restoration, let the same who preach David every weekend now acknowledge that perhaps Todd too will repent, find forgivess and be restored.

How many of those who flocked to Lakeland covered this young man and his family in prayer? I address this at length on my blog www.bolaoged.com. And how many of those pouring vitriol on him today can have their own sins exposed publicly without casting opprobrium on the name of Christ? Beware a pharisaical spirit. Truly brethren, let him who is without sin cast the first stone. This is a sad day for the church, let us mourn, but not gloat, it is too unbecoming.
 
I am glad that the bible wasn't written by anonymous peoples. They sure have a lot of opinions that they are not willing to identify with.
I think most of you guys are way out of your pay grade and are pretty full of yourselves.

The men that I know who are apostolic in their gifting are broken, servants who have been called to be a gift to the Church and give up all of their own desires, ambitions, and personal goals to follow Gods call on their life.

Don't filter your judgement of this situation through the filters of your struggles with authority. We see authority completely different than Jesus does. He came with authority from the God of all but lived as a servant to all. The apostolic call has the same calling, to serve. It is others that put them on a pedestal and it is a constant challenge to remain in humility.

The army of God is the only army that I know that shoot their wounded.

I applaud men who are trying to walk out that calling and I pray that God give them wisdom and allow them to see how it all fits together. The real leaders of the Kingdom are the servants of all and are not anonymous.

The way up is down.

Chuck
Cincinnati
 
Peter Wagner has lost all credibility. He is covering his butt on this one. He needs to retire his self-appointed title and go work in a soup kitchen for a while. he might then have a real picture of service to the Body of Christ.
 
timanddeb@commspeed.net
 
It is very sad to see the Charismatic church in such a state. We have taken a world view and no longer have a biblical view. Doctrine is boring, any movement is exciting. There is always some "New Anointing" or "New Jesus" waiting to be revealed at the next "New and Special Outpouring". Paul stated he was determined to know nothing except Jesus Christ and him Crucufied. I have said earlier that there should be a new name for the next outpouring claim, the "Elusive anointing", its always around the next bend or at the base of the next rainbow. What we have is never enough, more power, fire, vision, prophecies, revelations, dreams and angels while are families fall apart, divorces increase and our children leave the church after graduation. We need to get back to the basics.
Also I am amazed that we can rally around someone because of their gifts. I recall one of our local pastors who fell for the third time morally in 12 years. Everyone that attended his church said, he is just such a great teacher and so gifted". In all the qualifications for ministry being a good father and mother, with sterling character is at the top of the list, even before giftings. It's kind of like finding a nice t-bone steak In a garbage can surrounded by garbage and eating it. The steak maybe good but I will not go through garbage to retrieve it. There were so many warning flags surrounding Bentley he should have been out right rejected, such a treatment may have sobered Bentley more than any other. We put a premium on the anointing and can excuse almost any behavior because in our minds the Spirit of God is validating the messenger, nothing could be further than the truth. Both Baalam and Saul operated in the "Spirit" while backslidden. Saul prophesied all night and visited a witch and earlier had ordered all the priests murdered.
Bentley's revelations added to the Word and non-verified testimonies were eaten up by a jubilant crowd each night. Also I hear the constant whine about not judging a brother. Paul repeatedly reproved believers, he told Timothy to reprove and rebuke and certainly Jesus addressed issues with the religious leaders of his day. The other statement in defense of Bentley is we all are carnal and are guilty so we should shut up. You know, something like, you drink too much coffee and I commit adultery so let's just call it even. Were all in the same boat, nonsense!! It is very clear in the Old Testament there were different penalties and sin sacrifices for various sins committed. Some sins involved even physical punishment and some the death penalty. Misrepresenting God, the Word, the Holy Spirit, and testimonies and abusing the sick certainly are serious areas. Oh well, I know I will be looked on by many as a judge but I have been and still am a pastor of 37 years. I believe in the miraculous but an very concerned over the current state of the Charismatic movement.
 
Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link



<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

CONNECT: Subscription Service, About Strang Communications, Writers Guidelines, Newsletters

SITES: Charisma | Vida Christiana | SpiritLed Women | Ministries Today | Excel:Christian Higher Education | Christian Retailing