As was mentioned in the article Steven Furtick’s 12 Days of Revival, our favorite young celebrity pastor is planning a big event for next January. He intends to gather a group of speakers together in order to cause an “eruption” of God’s power and movement. Uh huh, okay, sure. Why twelve days though?
First, and most obvious, it’s 2012, and it just seems fitting to do it for 12 days to open up the year. Second, 12 is a significant number in the Bible. There are 12 tribes of Israel. 12 apostles of Jesus. Basically, it’s a number that points to the idea of completion or wholeness, especially in relation to the people of God. And since part of our vision is that believers and churches across the whole world will join us online for the event, making it last for 12 days made the most sense. (Online Source)
Ah, yes, nothing like a little numerology to start off the new year right! It fits right in with Furtick’s “vision” for this Code Orange Revival, which includes:
[F]or 12 days we’re going to have a heightened time of focus and expectancy for how God is going to move. We’re praying for fresh momentum, seeking God and asking what He wants to do in and through us all in this new year. And we’re thanking Him in advance for all that He is going to do. (Online Source)
It’s always interesting to me how the seeker-driven and Word Faith types especially are always seeking for more. As if God hasn’t already given us every possible blessing beyond what we could ever anticipate! Read Ephesians 1 and see if you ever again pray for more of God’s power or love, because you’ll realize that all of His blessings are already available to the Christian. Yet, in a time and day that is defined by the constant quest for “more,” we ought not be surprised that the so-called church has spiritualized this unnecessary expedition.
While it’s true that January is quite some time away, it’s never too early to become aware of some of the dangerous leaders infiltrating the church visible. The speaker lineup for Furtick’s Code Orange Revival is comprised of some of these leaders and is quite extensive, so I’ve decided to examine them in small doses.
We last examined Jentezen Franklin of Free Chapel Church in Gainesville, GA and Irvine, CA. It was demonstrated that Franklin is a typical Word Faith preacher and TBN personality who has claimed special revelation from God. His previous alignments with men like Craig Groeschel and Perry Noble leave little reason to doubt that he is one of whom to be wary. In this post, let’s jump to the only female participant Furtick has invited (thus far), Christine Caine.
Christine Caine directs Equip & Empower Ministries and is the founder of the A21 Campaign. A21 seeks to educate people about the human trafficking industry, which in itself is indeed a noble cause. The apparent reliance on superstition and numerology, then, is quite unfortunate:
On the importance and impact of prayer: “It’s not surprising to me that A21’s first conviction of a sex trafficker was June 21, 2010. We designate the 21st of every month to fast and pray. It says to people, ‘Prayer works!’ We put out a global request asking for people to pray for the ‘stan’ nations, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, etc., because we weren’t seeing much breakthrough in their big Muslim countries. Two days later, we got a young girl from Uzbekistan into the shelter. The church has a weapon the world just doesn’t have, so all of us can pray. The A21 website has a prayer you can download and pray every day.” (From a July 2010 interview, Online Source)
Caine is also on the leadership team at Hillsong Church in Sydney, Australia. Hillsong Church, led by Pastor Brian and Pastrix Bobbie Houston, is, as Apprising Ministries reports:
[P]erhaps best known for its popular worship music, [and] regularly features the major prosperity preachers of the Word Faith movement at their annual heresy-fests such as Joyce Meyer, Joel and Victoria Osteen, along with Jentezen Franklin numerous times, and Oneness Pentecostal Word Faith mogul T.D. Jakes again this year. (Online source).
With headlining names like that, it’s certainly safe to say that Hillsong Church is a far cry from being a bastion of Gospel truth! In fact, a quick look at the “What We Believe” page of Hillsong offers some insight into their view of Scripture:
We believe that the Bible is God’s Word. It is accurate, authoritative and applicable to our everyday lives.
“Accurate?” Is that the best you can do? Whatever happened to words like “infallible” and “inerrant?” Most importantly, what about the fact that the Scriptures in their original writings are the inspired Word of God?
But, let’s turn our focus again to Christine Caine. Also an ordained minister (as documented here), she is the author of such works as A Life Unleashed: Giving Birth to Your Dreams. The product description reads as follows:
Gifted communicator and Bible teacher Christine Caine reveals the steps to unleashing the potential in each of us. God has divinely created each of us with incredible potential–seeds that can grow into something significant. However, the past, current circumstances, or social conditions can cause us to forsake these seeds or allow them to lay dormant. During her 40-week pregnancy, Christine Caine discovered that conceiving, carrying, and giving birth to her daughter has much in common with actualizing our potential and realizing our dreams. In A LIFE UNLEASHED, she uses this metaphor of pregnancy to walk readers through the journey that will ultimately result in experiencing the fulfillment of our own God-given dreams. It*s a journey of both excitement and pain. In the same way women encounter nausea, restrictive dietary habits, and contractions during pregnancy, there will be challenges to overcome while giving birth to our dreams. But in due time we will see the fruit of that original seed of potential. Christine encourages readers that with continued trust in God–regardless of the obstacles–His plans and purposes will come to pass. (Online Source)
Ouch, sounds painful! This is typical Word Faith sentiment, “giving birth” to our dreams and “unleashing the potential” inside of us. Apart from Christ, the only potential I have is the potential to sin. And any “dreams” that I may have apart from Christ are also rooted in sin. Of course, this type of “literature” is always a big hit with the Joyce Meyer crowd, so it’s appropriate that she has endorsed this book by writing the foreword. The relationship between Caine and Meyer must be deeper still, because Caine was present this past weekend at the Joyce Meyer Love Life Conference, and seemed to be greatly enjoying herself as she eagerly tweeted out quotes and affirmations:
Okay, so she’s friends with Joyce Meyer, thinks that Meyer is “anointed” and attends and leads at a prosperity church. Big deal. It could be worse, right? It is. Caine was also a featured speaker last year at Bill Hybels’ Global Leadership Summit. When Bill Hybels invites you to speak to and teach thousands of current and future “church” leaders, you know you’ve hit the big time.A visit to Caine’s blog reveals a rather extensive list of books that she is currently reading. At the top of the list is Life of the Beloved by mystic Henri Nouwen. Other questionable authors include Craig Groeschel, Tim Keller, Andy Stanley, Brennan Manning, Frank Viola, Stovall Weems, and Bill Hybels. Quite honestly, nearly all of the titles on Caine’s “currently reading” list give cause for concern:There’s certainly more that could be said, more questions that could be raised, but it seems that the above should be more than enough reason for us to raise our eyebrows at the prospect that Christine Caine is a legitimate Bible teacher to be brought before the crowds at Steven Furtick’s Code Orange event. But then, who is to say that legitimate Bible teaching is what Furtick is going for?
In closing, let me share with you the “sinner’s prayer” that can be found on Caine’s own website. You’ll notice that, while it includes asking for forgiveness of sins, there is no actual confession of sin or acknowledgement of being a sinner! Without an explanation of what it means to sin against the God of the universe, there can be no genuine, godly repentance. The introduction on the website leading up to this prayer also offers no real explanation of sin, nor is there mention of the wrath of God for those who do not repent and put their trust in Jesus Christ. It is all about “God loves you,” which is only half of a watered-down Gospel, at best. Caine defines “knowing God” as:
[H]aving your own personal relationship with the Creator of the universe, discovering just how much He truly loves you, and embarking on the journey of loving Him back. (Online Source)
You’ll notice that the “sinner’s prayer” below is followed by Caine’s admonition to those who have just completed saying the prayer to “go hang out with Jesus” because “He’s been waiting for this moment all day.” Uh-huh. Something tells me Jesus hasn’t been wringing His hands in Heaven waiting for someone to “make a decision” to “accept” Him and “ask Him into their heart.”
Right now, I want to make the decision to stop living my life my own way, and begin living it Your way. I ask that You would forgive me for all my sins, give me a brand-new start today and a hope for the future. I want to be a Christian, a follower of Jesus Christ, for the rest of my life. Amen.
Now, why not switch off your computer for a bit and go hang out with Jesus. He’s been waiting for this moment all day! (Online Source)
The reader would do well to remember that also among Furtick’s list of scheduled speakers are the “young, restless and reformed” Matt Chandler, as well as James MacDonald of Walk in the Word and Harvest Bible Chapel fame. It seems fair to ask of these two men especially: Why? Why would you agree to share a stage with such weak (at best) and dangerous (at worst) teachers?SEE ALSO: