ON CONTEMPLATIVE SPIRITUALITY AND CHARISMANIA

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Apprising Ministries has been blessed to have been among the leading online apologetics and discernment ministries (OADM) who’re covering the very clear and present danger posed by the ongoing evangelical fascination with corrupt Contemplative Spirituality/Mysticism (CSM).

It’s important for you to remember here that CSM, which has been perpetrated throughout evangelicalism as so-called Spiritual Formation by Living Spiritual Teacher and Quaker mystic Richard Foster along with his spiritual twin Dallas Willard, was a key core doctrine of the Emerging Church.1

Keep in mind as well that the EC is in actuality an arm of the Church Growth Movement that would specifically begin their targeting of evangelical Youth groups and Young Adult ministries with their pro-CSM propaganda circa 2000. And unfortunately, too many evangelical churches would buy into it.

As a result they systematically began using their young people as guinea pigs for CSM, which is merely repackaged Roman Catholic mysticism that is hostile to the proper Christian spirituality of sola Scriptura. No one credible is saying that we cannot experience God; no, the critical point involves testing experience.

I’ve also explained that at the same time we began seeing an increase within mainstream evangelicalism of charismatic practices; and with them people, e.g. Beth Moore, who regularly claim God is speaking to them. Now we have a rampant charismania sweeping through the heart of professing Christendom.

Please understand that I’m using the word charismania here as a descriptor for hyper-charismatic excesses. One of the results of the practice of CSM, and its parallel track of charismania, is a delusion concerning Christian unity. The adherents truly believe God wants to unite all factions of the visible church; including Rome.

For example, that’s why we’ve been witnessing Mark Driscoll And James McDonald Mainstreaming T.D. Jakes and Francis Chan Declares “I Love Mike Bickle” Of IHOP and respected charismatic theologian Dr. Michael Brown Says Friends Mike Bickle And Lou Engle “True Men Of God”.

Who foresaw Word Faith prosperity preachers and New Apostolic Reformation wingnuts moving into the ranks of mainstream evangelicalism? Really; T.D. Jakes Repents Of Word Faith Heresy And Mythology? Members of the self-anointed Evangelical Ecumenical Magisterium (EEM)2 would have us think so.

The thing all of these people have in common is that eventually their supposed direct revelations with God always take precedence; experience ends up trumping Holy Scripture. Instead of loving God’s Word and experiencing Him there a la the means of grace, these would rather settle for their occultic experiences.

Again, the issue is not about being led by God; it’s about such as these getting things backward because they are testing Scripture by their experience. So, why have I written so strongly against this Counter Reformation CSM and the growing charismania, with the inevitable watered-down gospel it always produces?

I’ll tell you; because at a most critical time where more and more people’s thinking is corrupted by postmodernism, they are right now being led away from the all-sufficiency of God’s Word in the Bible. And instead, this is all causing those who follow such as these to rely more upon feelings than the text of Holy Scripture.

However, this is to commit spiritual suicide. So, what happens to these people is the first time they have a negative experience in life and/or don’t feel that God is meeting their personal needs, they fall away. Megachurch man-centered doctrine and WF fables just don’t work. The fire comes, and they quickly burn up.

As I close this, for now, I’m going to give you a general overview of the fetid fruit produced by CSM and charismania as it would end up killing the mainline denominations. It went like this beginning circa 1965, and traces back to the charismatic renewal, particularly within apostate Roman Catholicism.

Charismatics would fracture with many hyper-charismatics going into those mainline denominations where they chose to embrace liberalism. They would also move even more deeply into contemplative practices, which then led such as these right on into the ecumenical movement by the ’70’s.

Next they succumbed to the influences of the feminist movement and began ordaining more and more women in violation of God’s design for local church leadership. It wouldn’t take very long before out went the doctrine of hell as their feeling was, “I’d never send one of my children to a place like that.”

So, as we then follow that line of reasoning to its inevitable conclusion, mainline denominations began to be more and more affirming of the burgeoning homosexual lobby. When these dead and dying churches finally got to that point, they would leave the Gospel entirely and even become full on inclusivists.

And finally, they’ve arrived at the position that everyone’s already in relationship to God. As such, then the next logical step in their apostasy was for them to open up the debate to allow for the ordination of homosexual clergy, which is right now ripping so many of these man-centered denominations apart.

Now keep in mind that broader evangelicalism already allows the wider mercy doctrine a la Billy Graham: Long A Leader In Evangelical Apostasy. You need to also remember that circa 1997 evangelicals began promoting the neo-liberal cult operating within the Emerging Church in highly impressionable younger sectors.3

There’s no doubt whatsoever that mainstream evangelicalism has now welcomed in the practices of corrupt Counter Reformation spirituality and is even beginning to embrace hyper-charismatic excesses, i.e. charismania. Look for yourself, it’s becoming increasingly ecumenical, and many younger evangelicals are inclusive.

Hence the relative non-controversy surrounding, and even acceptance of, the Love Wins mythology of Rob Bell. Taking you back to the pattern we saw in the mainline denominations, we can make an educated guess that we will very soon begin to see even more and more women ordained within mainstream evangelicalism.

That’s what I was getting at last year when I wrote the article Women Pastors, Priscilla Shirer, And The Southern Baptist Convention. I’ll leave you with this: Young and influential EEM member Steven Furtick, a fast rising star preaching a hybrid Seeker Sensitive and Word Faith message, openly embraces the position of pastrix.

For example, consider Word Faith Pastrix Christine Caine Preaches Sunday Morning Sermon For Steven Furtick. If you didn’t know, Caine is a former youth pastrix at the highly influential Word Faith outfit known as Hillsong Church in Australia where pastor Brian Houston and pastrix Bobbie Houston are the “Senior Pastors.”4

Below is a clip of Furtick at Hillsong Conference 20125 paying homage and gushing praise for those two rebels against the final authority of God’s Word:

Let me share with you a question that, dare I say it, I kind of wonder if the Lord laid on my heart for you to contemplate the next time you’re doing some meditation: If mainstream evangelicalism continues on its present course, do you really think that the results will be different than what happened to the mainline denominations?

Further reading

Endnotes

  1. e.g. Origin Of Contemplative/Centering Prayer
  2. e.g. Elephant Room Curator ames MacDonald Points Us To A Couple Conferences Of Interest
  3. e.g. Emergent Wolves Enter Your Sheep Pens Through Youth Groups
  4. http://myhillsong.com/senior-pastors-eldership, accessed 2/6/14.
  5. http://bit.ly/1g6VlTk, accessed 2/6/14.