CROSSTALK: KEN SILVA ON "EVANGELICALS EMBRACE MYSTICS"

Ken Silva of Apprising Ministries joins Ingrid Schlueter on her Crosstalk radio program to address an important aspect the current drift away from Sola Scriptura in contemporary evangelicalism. In Christianity Today Promoting the Cult of Richard Foster a couple of weeks back we told you about a feature interview with Living Spiritual Teacher and Quaker mystic Richard Foster in this month’s edition of Christianity Today magazine.

But there’s something you need to understand about this highly subjective and spiritually corrupt Contemplative Spirituality/Mysticism (CSM) with its Contemplative/Centering Prayer (CCP), all of which flowered in the antibiblical monastic traditions of apostate Roman Catholicism. Right now it’s spreading as a cancer within the American Christian Church through the spurious Spiritual Formation as taught by Foster along with his spiritual twin Dallas Willard.

From the Crosstalk website:

There is a growing fascination among evangelicals who are claiming to find truth by embracing elements of medieval mysticism as well as the modern, Eastern influenced mysticism.

To prove the point, Ingrid played a You Tube audio clip of Christian apologist Ravi Zacharius who, while discussing homosexuality, referenced Henri Nouwen as being a great saint of recent memory. Once a professor of psychology at Harvard University, Nouwen believed that it was his call to help every person claim his or her way to God. That’s a message of universalism, not Christian theology.

As you listen to this program you’ll learn about other personalities, past and present, that support a union of Christianity and mysticism. You’ll also discover how this movement is actually leading people toward neo-pietism as it attempts to connect them into union with God.

More Information

http://www.apprising.org

Article on “Who is Ruth Haley Barton”
Article on “Who is Richard Foster” (Online source)

You can download and listen to this Crosstalk program here.

Of course Zacharias praising Henri Nouwen isn’t that surprising when you consider that in his piece “Spirituality and Spiritual Disciplines” he calls Celebration of Discipline a “contemporary classic”:

Many have languished spiritually under the delusion that since there is nothing that we can do to be justified before God, there is also nothing we can do to be sanctified, or made righteous. This is a falsehood. Salvation is a completely unmerited gift of God given to us through faith. But that does not mean that we have no role in our becoming sanctified. God does not wave a magic wand and make us completely sanctified at the point of salvation. Rather, God calls us to pursue Him, and promises to transform us as we do so.

That is what the Spiritual Disciplines are. They are our pursuit of God, so that He can change us. As Richard Foster says, “[The Spiritual] Disciplines allow us to place ourselves before God so that he can transform us.” We do not make ourselves righteous by reading the Bible or fasting or meditation. Rather, as we commit to seeking God, and expectantly seeking Him in these disciplines, He changes us. The disciplines are God’s garage in which He works on us. (Online source, emphasis mine)

Now  I realize Zacharias likely wrote an awkward sentence and is trying to talk about progressive sanctification, but even so we do not ever reach a point this side of Heaven where we are “made righteous.” As a former Roman Catholic I can tell you that what I highlighted above would not be Protestant theology. Rather it is in lock-step with apostate Roman Catholicism.

Justification means that the regenerated believer is delared righteous by God having had the merits of Jesus Christ imputed to him. As such there is absolutely nothing which the human contributes, or ever could contribute, to this justification so he would be made righteous. This is Soli Deo Gloria.

And following in the excerpt below from the AM post About Richard Foster Dr. Gary Gilley gives you a proper breakdown of the “virtual encyclopedia of theological error” that is Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster:

Celebration of Discipline alone, not even referencing Foster’s other writings and teachings and ministries, is a virtual encyclopedia of theological error.  We would be hard pressed to find in one so-called evangelical volume such a composite of false teaching.  These include faulty views on the subjective leading of God (pp. 10, 16-17, 18, 50, 95, 98, 108-109, 128, 139-140, 149-150, 162, 167, 182); approval of New Age teachers (see Thomas Merton below); occultic use of imagination (pp. 25-26, 40-43, 163, 198); open theism (p. 35); misunderstanding of the will of God in prayer (p. 37); promotion of visions, revelations and charismatic gifts (pp. 108, 165, 168-169, 171, 193); endorsement of rosary and prayer wheel use (p. 64); misunderstanding of the Old Testament Law for today (pp. 82, 87); mystical journaling (p. 108); embracing pop-psychology (pp. 113-120); promoting Roman Catholic practices such as use of “spiritual directors,” confession and penance (pp. 146-150, 156, 185); and affirming of aberrant charismatic practices (pp. 158-174, 198). 

See also:

RAVI ZACHARIAS ANSWERS “CAN A PERSON LIVE A SINCERE CHRISTIAN LIFE AS A HOMOSEXUAL?”

CHRISTIANITY TODAY PROMOTING THE ROMAN CATHOLIC MYSTIC CATHERINE OF SIENA

HENRI NOUWEN HELPED BY “MEDITATION”

WHO IS THOMAS MERTON?

SPIRITUAL FORMATION IS PIETISM REIMAGINED

SPIRITUAL FORMATION: JUST SAY NO

CONTEMPLATIVE SPIRITUALITY/MYSTICISM (CSM) OF SPIRITUAL FORMATION IS RECKLESS FAITH

DELUSIONS OF DALLAS WILLARD