Repentance, Rejection, and Reformation

On August 30, 2019 I wrote a post on some troubling things happening in the Body of Christ and specifically some troubling things in charismatic circles. I made a statement towards the end of that post, make the determination now that Scripture is your standard. Regardless of what any of us have been taught, have grown up believing or hear in prophetic words, the Scripture must be our final authority.

Since writing that post I have continued in prayer and study over things. I have finished reading John Wesley’s sermons and have allowed myself some very honest questioning on some things I have grown up believing. Earlier this year I began getting uncomfortable with some teachings but I shrugged it off and just kept going. On September 17 I was sent the American Gospel Documentary on YouTube and on the nineteenth I was sent Mike Winger’s video concerning The Passion Translation. God providentially used these two videos to start me on a journey I never expected.

Before I continue with my story let me say that from 2008 through the summer of 2012 I was going to a charismatic church that also taught reformed theology. Pastor Steve Solomon taught on Romans eight for nine months in 2008. He also introduced me to Jonathan Edwards, John Piper, and R. C. Sproul. Those were the seeds that brought forth the journey that has taken place these last several weeks.

I grew up in a classical Pentecostal church and watched Word of Faith preachers on TV. In my twenties I was introduced to the prophetic movement and teachings on the Jewish roots. I dove in full force, keeping up with prophecies, going to conferences and studying the Bible from a Jewish perspective. Ever since hearing Pastor Steve preach for several years I continually struggled with the Word of Faith teaching. It seemed so shallow compared to reformed theology. Nevertheless I persisted in pursuing the faith teaching and the prophetic movement, I did this because there is a great end time move on the horizon and I don’t want to miss out on what God is going to do.

Even though I was following the prophetic movement in the back of my mind I was skeptical of the words coming forth, they all sounded generic. One place I was going to always talked about what was coming, after a couple of years I became uncomfortable with the conferences but I kept going because I didn’t want to miss prophetic words because I didn’t want to miss the move of God.

Back to the two videos I mentioned. One of the key teachers in the Word of Faith church I was attending used The Passion Translation a lot, that was actually the Bible he carried in church. One of the issues I had with that was the translation was only the New Testament, Psalms, Proverbs and Song of Songs. Many people in the charismatic movement use that translation because it undergirds their theology, it is not a real translation.(Please watch Mike Winger’s video so you can see the problems with the translation) At the end of The American Gospel promo video there was a testimony from a formal Bethel Student named Lindsay Davis that interested me. I have never followed Bethel, I’ve read three of Bill Johnson’s books but that’s it. I know how popular Bethel is though so I looked up Lindsay’s testimony on YouTube. To make a long story short, that lead me to two former new agers, Doreen Virtue and Melissa Dougherty. Now outside of them interviewing Lindsay I wouldn’t have thought they would have anything else of interest for me. But they had an interview with Costi Hinn about the prosperity gospel which really got me to question some things as well as Melissa’s video on New Thought and Word of Faith. I also found Chris Rosebrough through them. Chris takes popular Word of Faith and prophetic teachers and prophecies and dissects them with the Word. I have watched several of his videos the last few weeks.

I have been reexamining some things and have been honest about things I have pushed to the side, such as Jesus suffering in Hell and some interpretations of Scripture I was never quite comfortable with.     

I don’t want to go long with this post so I won’t be going through all the Scriptures I’ve looked at, I want to encourage you to watch The American Gospel Documentary and watch some of Chris’s videos as you study the Word for yourself.

One of the things I was taught in the Word of Faith was you put the Word first, and I have been doing that in a way I haven’t been. I have realized that the prophetic movement has actually taken me away from the Word of God and the Spirit of God, it hasn’t lead me to it. When you really get hooked in with the prophetic movement, it becomes a drug, you always need your next prophetic fix. One “prophet” I followed typically releases three words a week. As I began looking at past words I realized many of them were not saying anything of substance and other words had clearly not come to pass. What really bothered me was how every word was about something around the corner. False prophets were never called out, false prophecies were swept under the rug and that is not biblical. All of the sudden I began to see the level of deception I was walking in. From things like the library room of Heaven, I would take trips there in my mind. I would go in different rooms. That was not of God, it was deception. That is something I have repented of and stopped. As I have looked over words in journals and things the Lord has “spoken to me”. I realize it was not the Holy Spirit but my own mind.

One of the things being pushed right now is the streams coming together. That has bothered me from the first time I heard it. That thinking is giving rise to the great apostasy. I’ve read both of Costi Hinn’s books; Defining Deception and God, Greed and the (Prosperity) Gospel as well as Holly Pivec’s book, God’s Super Apostles. I have been reading and studying the New Testament holding all of my beliefs next to Scripture. I have found the Word of Faith and the prophetic movement seriously lacking in biblical truth and correct application. Concerning the Jewish roots, the Church should not be anti-Semitic. We do need to understand historical context, especially the Jewish context of the New Testament but believing studying ancient Jewish wisdom will unlock secrets for us is another false teaching and another way many in the prophetic movement are leading people away from the sufficiency of Scripture.

I repent of and I reject the Word of Faith which puts the emphasis on my faith and desires and not the sovereignty of God. I repent of chasing after the prophetic words and charismatic movements, the false signs, false revivals and the wrong application of the Jewish roots of the New Testament that come with them. I reject the modern prophetic and apostolic movement. It is leading people away from the sufficiency of Scripture and I want no part of it.

There is more I could say but many of my thoughts and observations from Scripture over these last several weeks are posted on my Instagram and Twitter if you would like to see how I got to this point in more detail. I believe everyone needs to do what I did, study the Scripture for themselves and be willing to let the Word destroy wrong teaching. I have unfollowed all the teachers and prophets on social media. I went back as far as I was able to on Twitter deleting and un-retweeting things as well as deleting posts from Instagram, I’m sure I could have missed some but this is my public statement of repenting and rejecting the Word of Faith and prophetic movements.

I have walked away from Word of Faith in the past, only to return but I can tell you what is different this time. I have no draw or desire to hear those teachings and I no longer feel like I am missing out on anything. The Word of God is enough. Christ is enough.

I am looking forward to getting reacquainted with the Jesus of Scripture and following Him. If you have any reading recommendations, church recommendations, or want to share your own testimony of being saved out of deception I would love to read your story in the comments.

About Casey D. Bell

Casey D. Bell is a blogger and aspiring pastor whose passion is to teach The Bible and engage culture. He shares daily conent and Twitter and Instagram.
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