Last time I started an interview with Karsten Miller, aka Difference Maker, on the topics of the Word of Faith and Charismatic movements. Last time we covered Karsten’s experience in the movements. So please join me again for part 2 of the interview.
What’s the big deal with the Word of Faith movement? Aren’t they Christian? Where do they go wrong?
The big deal is the WoF does not give the true authenticated Gospel, but instead propagates a perverted one. It is a false gospel which demands self-gratification and appeasing of one’s flesh, avoiding the power of the Lord Jesus Christ to free the believer from sin.
Now, the WoF does reference the Bible (where the true Gospel abides), but that proves absolutely nothing. Satan used the Bible against Jesus by twisting Scripture in Matthew 4 and Luke 4. The Pharisees read and supposedly knew the scriptures, but desired to kill the One the prophecies spoke of. Using the Scripture means nothing if it is used out of context. The only way one can really be saturated in God’s truth is when God’s truth is preached in an expository way, and the Scriptures can be rightly understood, examined, and received by the congregations of believers. But the WoF never does such things. Eisegesis is their hermeneutic. They read into the text what they believe to be true and devise their own interpretation of Scripture. Inevitably, what is regurgitated to their followers is something that appeals to the flesh and to the pockets of these teachers.
Tithing is one of the biggest schemes they use to manipulate their followers. I particularly remember one false convert warning us of the dangers of not tithing, supposedly found in Malachi 3:8-11. We would supposedly be cursed and attacked by the devil if we did not tithe. Unfortunately, that text has nothing to do with the devil, but the locust insects devouring the fields of that agricultural society. Yet we have millions of people in Western culture buying into this garbage.
The big deal is they are not Christian because they adhere to a false gospel, plain and simple. The true gospel is prescribed by the Bible. It is that Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, came down from heaven born of a virgin (incarnation) and lived a perfect sinless life, died on the cross for sin (I believe for the elect according to Ephesians 5), was bodily buried and rose bodily from the grave, revealing that His resurrection occurred, and ascended into heaven. Soon, He shall return to come and judge the living and the dead. So the sinner who hears this message, must repent of his sin (turn 180 from his sinful lifestyle, believe the Gospel, and follow after the Lord Jesus Christ), while the Spirit of God gives evidence of fruit in his/her life. Man is not good, nor capable of saving himself, but it takes the work of Christ alone to save an individual. It is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone. That is the Gospel, all spelled out to us from Genesis to Revelation.
Ok, so the main issue with the WoF movement is a false gospel. Let’s turn our attention to the Charismatic movement. What about prophecy? Most Charismatics believe that prophecy still exists. When you were in Charismatic churches, what did “prophecy” normally look like?
Prophecy – Prophecy in the charismatic movement never centralizes on sin and repentance from it. Prophecy in these churches glorifies the individual, puffing him up with more pride. It harbors around the future and endless mind manipulation upon those who are not biblically sound in their theology or thinking about Christ. These so-called prophecies never lift up Scripture or glorify the Lord Jesus Christ. There is never a message of salvation given. Etc. They are taylor-made lies to boost up flesh and fleshly people. Most of the prophelies say what God is going to give them or release them from (never sin in their own life). Or, as I watched Mark Driscoll proclaim to have, they exploit something grotesque in an individual’s life, only in turn to make the so-called prophet look spiritual. What’s scary is that some of these so-called prophecies appear to come to pass or appear to be truth. The reality is they only draw a person away from the Scripture (Deuteronomy 13). It focuses on the individual and does not build up the body as a whole.
Here’s an example: “The Holy Spirit is saying that you need to finish that tradition and move to the highest mountain, for this must become a reality in your life.”
Now, honestly, that sounds nice — but that is not what biblical prophecy even sounds close to.
To contrast, read this prophecy of Amos 1 in KJV:
The words of Amos, who was among the herdmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel, two years before the earthquake. And he said, The LORD will roar from Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the habitations of the shepherds shall mourn, and the top of Carmel shall wither. Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away [the punishment] thereof; because they have threshed Gilead with threshing instruments of iron: But I will send a fire into the house of Hazael, which shall devour the palaces of Benhadad. I will break also the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven, and him that holdeth the sceptre from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Kir, saith the LORD. Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Gaza, and for four, I will not turn away [the punishment] thereof; because they carried away captive the whole captivity, to deliver [them] up to Edom: But I will send a fire on the wall of Gaza, which shall devour the palaces thereof: And I will cut off the inhabitant from Ashdod, and him that holdeth the sceptre from Ashkelon, and I will turn mine hand against Ekron: and the remnant of the Philistines shall perish, saith the Lord GOD. Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Tyrus, and for four, I will not turn away [the punishment] thereof; because they delivered up the whole captivity to Edom, and remembered not the brotherly covenant: But I will send a fire on the wall of Tyrus, which shall devour the palaces thereof. Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Edom, and for four, I will not turn away [the punishment] thereof; because he did pursue his brother with the sword, and did cast off all pity, and his anger did tear perpetually, and he kept his wrath for ever: But I will send a fire upon Teman, which shall devour the palaces of Bozrah. Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of the children of Ammon, and for four, I will not turn away [the punishment] thereof; because they have ripped up the women with child of Gilead, that they might enlarge their border: But I will kindle a fire in the wall of Rabbah, and it shall devour the palaces thereof, with shouting in the day of battle, with a tempest in the day of the whirlwind: And their king shall go into captivity, he and his princes together, saith the LORD. (Amos 1:1-15)
There is a complete difference. Again, the Christian must grasp a healthy understanding of what biblical prophecy. Understanding that, you’ll clearly see this gift is not in operation amongst today’s so-called prophets.
More to follow!