Charismatics – Signs Wonders Word Faith

Religions, Cults & Worldviews: Valuable Answers for Valid Questions.

Charismatic Cult

"Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables."

Charismatic groups are extreme iterations or sub-sects of Pentecostalism. Charismatics do not consider themselves to be a denomination and often refer to themselves as “non-denominational” or as a “movement”. In reality, the charismatics, when compared to the Biblical-historical Christian faith are more of a decentralized cult but without a formal hierarchy, structure or main “headquarters” like many other cults. There are two major branches of this cult which can be categorized as:

  1. Word Faith Charismatic: This group places a ridiculous emphasis on followers tithing to their god in order to coerce their god into blessing the tithers back. They believe that they are little gods equal to Almighty God and that they have the power of “life and death” creation and cursing in their own tongues/speech. One of the many doctrines they share with the signs and wonders charismatic is the idea of divine healing as a “gift” to a specific individual (usually only the cult leader, conveniently).
    • Major cult leaders of this cultic branch of charismatics are Benny Hinn, Paula White, Kenneth Copeland, Creflo Dollar, T.D. Jakes, Joel Osteen, Steven Furtick and Joyce Meyers to name a few. These are birds of a feather which all seem to stick together, appearing in each other’s church even tithing to one another’s churches.
  2. Signs and Wonders Charismatic (includes New Apostolic Reformation): This group tends to embrace and/or defend all the doctrines and leaders of the word faith cult but differentiates itself by placing a hyper-emphasis on supernatural “signs and wonders” to the extent that Biblical truth is not only rejected but resented. There is a consistent embrace of many Hindu practices like yoga (overtly) and the Kundalini spirit (covertly) along with a mystical approach to their faith which involves “grave soaking” where they lie on a dead cult leader’s grave and “soak up” the mantle of that leader. This group holds to dominion theology which is the idea that their god is creating a “super” church led by “apostles” to take over and rule the world one sector at a time e.g. business, arts and entertainment, education etc. 
    • The main proponents and dangerous teachers of this cultic group are Dr. Michael Brown (referred to by some as the apostle of obfuscation), Bill Johnson, Todd White, Randy Clark, Heidi Baker, Chris Vallotten, Chuck Pierce, Rodney Howard Browne, Cindy Jacobs, Che Ahn, Patricia King and Rick Joyner to name a few. This group ignores the rebuke from Jesus to the Pharisees when they tested Him seeking a “sign”:

"A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.” And He left them and departed."

The Pentecostal roots of the charismatic cults

To properly understand the charismatic cults of word faith and signs and wonders we need to see how Pentecostalism developed and subsequently how charismaticism grew from there.

For those unfamiliar with Pentecostalism, it is not a denomination but was considered a “movement” back in the early 20th century which sprouted into several main denominations: Christian and Missionary Alliance, Assemblies of God, International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, Vineyard, Elim (UK), Church of the Nazarene, Church of God in Christ, Oneness Pentecostal (cult more than it is a denomination), to a much lesser extent, Calvary Chapel (typically anti-cessastion in pneumatology but not pentecostal in liturgical ecclesiology), Disciples of Christ, and many others.

Today, pentecostalism has coalesced into a pervasive belief system whereby the belief that the vocal or ‘sign’ gifts: tongues, prophecy, word of knowledge, are all available in practice today. However, these gifts were given to the early church to perform the functions of the word of God which wasn’t readily available in those churches. As the word of God became more accessible, available and widespread, we see in history that the Holy Spirit slowly decreased dispensing these gifts more and more to where they were quite rare if ever witnessed at all and even then, only where the word of God wasn’t available e.g. missionaries sharing the gospel to remote tribes without the scriptures in their language.

Early painting of Montanus

With the sudden and unbiblical instances of practicising ecstatic tongues, many leaders of the charismatic and pentecostal movements began to assert that the word they were speaking was “God-given” and therefore on an equal par (or many times superior) to the words of the Bible. Charismatics try to add a distinction between the Greek words rhema and logos to show that the Bible supports new and ongoing revelation (despite its contradicting God’s previous revelation of Himself and mankind). These leaders claim that the Greek word “rhema” represents a “fresh word” whereas the Greek word “logos” is nothing more than a stale “old manna” word from God. This is usually their tongue-in-cheek view toward the Bible and those that quote from it. This has resulted in error after error in doctrine and heresy after heresy among those churches which embrace the aberrant views of the charismatic cults which we divide into signs and wonders cults and the word faith cults.

Early false teachers of aberrations from scripture

The following timeline chart will inform you of the origins of modern charismatic and pentecostal theologies and how they began to veer from the Biblical historical Christian faith along with the movers and shakers who shaped the movement’s founders and modern practitioners?

Montanus - Ecstatic heresy

MONTANUS: The first person in church history to come along with an eerie likeness to the modern day false teachers of the Charismatic movements was a man named Montanus who, around 170 A.D. declared himself a “prophet” and direct speaker by the Holy Spirit which he referred to as “the Paraclete”. He would deliver his prophecies, speaking as the Holy Spirit in person, in a state of ecstatic fervor, similar to Pentecostalal movements of the early 20th century. He believed in the equality of men and women as ecclesiastical leaders and in use of prophecy. This view was condemned by the early church fathers who confronted Montanus' teachings but unfortunately, they were resurrected in the Charles Parham-led Pentecostal movement of the early 20th century after which these views have continued down to the current day.

Montanus gained a great following starting in his home area of Anatolia, where he was rumored to have been a pagan priest prior to his “prophethood” and followers of Montanus called their movement “The New Prophecy”. He held that all members could/should be prophets which was opposed by many church leaders, one of which was Tertullian an early church father. His two primary followers were both women: Priscilla and Maximilla who also spoke prophecies in an ecstatic state just as he did. Montanus, like the church of orthodoxy, rejected a hierarchy of clerical structure which hadn’t really yet taken root in the decentralised church and wouldn’t do so for another 200-300 years. He discouraged marriage in favor of devotion to God (a doctrine later to catch on with the Western Roman Church) and he became extremely apocalyptic believing the return of Jesus to be imminent and whose Kingdom would be set up in Phrygia. It is for this reason that his group was referred to as the “Phrygians”. Sadly, one of the early critics of this heretical group became one himself. Tertullian would join this group after a while and remain with it for a considerable time, eventually only leaving them due to what he felt was a “lack” of asceticism (Montanus’ followers lived Spartan lifestyles but were not ascetics). This movement would slowly die out but was around long enough for Augustine to mention them in his writings in the early 5th century.

AD 170

Vincent Ferrer - Mystic

VINCENT FERRER: Another significant contributor and “mentor” to early pentecostal grandfathers was a Spanish Dominican monk who traveled with the Catholic “gospel” message all over Europe around 1415 A.D. and supposedly converted many Jews to Catholicism. Ferrer was a Roman Catholic mystic who found himself entangled in the “Great Papal Schism” where three Popes all sat in supposed supreme infallible authority of the Catholic Church. Although he is said to have only spoken Valencian, many historians/biographers claimed he had an ultra rare “gift of tongues” in his ministry to the Jews. He is also purported to have raised many from the dead which leads some Catholic writers to claim his ministry to be the most miraculous since the Apostles. Ferrer is credited by the Vatican Museums with healing a lame woman, raising of a rich Jewish woman from the dead, also a child killed by his pregnant mother who had lost her mind etc.

He was apocalyptic and believed the antichrist was alive during his time. He was granted “sainthood” by the church in 1458 and according to the Vatican Museums, he was a “Spanish saint canonized in 1458, who was commonly worshipped in Bologna.” Ferrer’s mystic approach and ministry are often looked to by modern Catholic, and non-Catholic Charismatics alike as evidential and/or justification for speaking in tongues and seeking miraculous experiences. However, much of what Ferrer embraced was, and is, not found in the Bible rather is contrary to 2 Tim. 3:16-17, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 that the man of God may be adequate–equipped for every good work. This declares Scripture to be “God breathed”, and that the man of god is “thoroughly” equipped for “every” good work (not just some) This view of Scripture has been opposed and rejected by both Ferrer, the Roman Catholic church and the Charismatic movement today.

1415

With Montanus we see a disregard for Scriptural authority and a self-appointment to the office of prophet. In both Montanus and Ferrer we see a mystical approach to Christianity whereby God talks directly to them outside of or in place of, His perfectly and divinely inspired Word. Both men would go on to espouse ecstatic “tongues” which were not practiced during the Apostolic age nor after but somehow these men didn’t see a need to adhere to the Scriptural practice whereby the gift of tongues was a known language for the purpose of glorifying Jesus and demonstrating His power over sin and death to further the Gospel.

Painting Vincent Ferrer

Quakers: early forerunners of pentecostalism

George Fox - Extra Biblical revelation

a man named George Fox, who in 1647 is credited as the founder of the Quakers from which 19th century “Higher Life” apostates, Robert & Hannah Whitehall Smith. Fox’s views on “hearing from God” and the “inner voice” would set him apart as one of the earliest mystics to emerge from within Protestantism. In 1647 Fox experienced an extra-biblical revelation whereby he determined that all authority everywhere was corrupt and therefore we must all trust in the “inner light” of our personal inspiration to hear from God. This “internal light” source for revelation would defy the Scriptural principle of Proverbs which declares that “There is a way that seems right to a man but in the end it leads to death” and Psalm 119 – How can a man keep his way pure? By taking heed according to Your Word”. This “looking within” would later become the bedrock paradigm for all Holiness, Pentecostal, and Charismatic movements to follow in the 3 centuries that followed.

Fox had this renewal after isolation for several years in his teens (like the Apostle Paul he says) and “listening to God” within himself and then at 22 years of age became a minister that preached personal relation with God outside of “organized religious structure” and/or the Bible. This became a cautionary tale which defied the warning of the Apostle Paul who exhorted Christian leaders not to be hasty in the laying on of hands, do not allow a novice to lead lest he become puffed up (filled with pride) and fall into the error as satan. Fox’s declaration to rely on “personal relation” and declaring “religious structure” i.e. church authority as something evil, is one of the earliest forms of anti-Biblical mysticism in a similar manner to Francis of Assisi’s anti-establishment mysticism 400+ years earlier.

The name of Fox’s following was derived from an experience In 1648 when he preached and his house was “shaken” thereafter experiencing spiritual manifestations of healings and the miraculous. From that time until now, this error of placing manifestations of the miraculous as the highest authority of truth, even over Scripture, has plagued the church with heretical cultic movements left and right like the Charismatic movement with John Wimber and John Arnot, the false healings of Benny Hinn, the Ponzi scheme deception of Kenneth Copeland, and the false signs and wonders of Bill Johnson, Kris Vallaton, Bethel Church, and Jesus Culture, to name a few.

Just like the mindless followers of our modern day false prophets and teachers, Fox’s followers blindly followed his deception and then became known as “Friends of the Truth” then known to most as “Quakers” because they were said to ‘tremble in the fear of God’ by a political official whom Fox recommended to “tremble in the fear of God” thus “Quaker” was a bit of a derisive term which stuck.

By 1650 Fox started receiving numerous extra-Biblical “prophetic” directives and in 1661 he wrote the “Peace Testimony” which admonished his Quaker following to adhere to pacifism and nonviolence under all circumstances. Whereas this doctrine of pacifism wasn’t necessarily carried on by the Holiness and Pentecostalism movements he inspired, those movement would embrace another position that Fox introduced: namely that anyone, including women, could speak at Quaker meetings. This was not allowed according to Roman Catholic ecclesiology nor by Bible-believing Protestant Christians of the day as it violates the Biblical mandate which states that unbelievers or purveyors of heresy were not to be invited into your house (churches were in homes in that day) nor given a platform to speak (2 John 1:10).

Fox’s doctrine of permitting women to teach and have authority over men in church (or even to serve as pastors) is a clear departure from 1 Timothy 2:12 which forbids such a practice as dictated to the Apostle Paul by the Holy Spirit. This doctrine would eventually find its way into the Holiness Movement and is now a staple doctrine of Pentecostal and Charismatic churches and denominations. Trail blazers for the George Fox heresy were 19th century Phoebe Palmer and Hannah Whitall Smith of the Holiness and Higher life movements and Aimee Semple McPherson and Kathryn Kuhlman of the 20th century Pentecostal/Charismatic movements.

AD 1648

Surprisingly (even sadly), a non-holiness, non-experientialist, Reformed tradition preacher named Charles Spurgeon would extol the virtues of George Fox at an address to The Society of Friends in September of 1866:

“His (George Fox) life well repays the earnest student . It is a rich mine. Every page of it is precious as solid gold…I do not think that George Fox spoke too strongly when he said, ‘I am clear.’…He adopted every mode which ingenuity could devise to arouse a slumbering nation, and better still, he also followed after the better wisdom which comes from the Spirit of God.”

It would be statements from orthodox Bible-believing Christian leaders like Spurgeon, that would lend credibility to those who emphasized the value of “experience” over scripture and who placed greater emphasis on “signs and wonders” than on faith in God at His word, in His word. I don’t say this to cast aspersion on Spurgeon (say that 10 times fast) but rather to make the point that sometimes well-meaning Godly men like Spurgeon, must always be careful to know well those whom they choose to publically endorse as it can truly cause undue confusion. George Fox departed from sola scriptura and paved the way for a new position regarding the Bible which is more like “somewhat scriptura”. He leaned heavily on his own inner voice – which is tied to his fallen sin nature and a manifestation of signs and wonders – which Jesus said “A wicked and perverse generation seeks a sign”. Clearly, manifestation of the miraculous can deceive our five senses and shouldn’t be the ultimate authority in our lives or the church itself, rather that should be the time-tested, proven word of God: The BIBLE.

The Pietists – Emotion is Superior to Intellect

Only a few decades later in the 17th century we see the emergence of the founder of a movement called “Lutheran Pietism”, Philipp Spener and his successor Nikolaus Von Zinzendorf.

Philip Spener- Founder of Pietism

Spener would spark this new movement with a written work in 1670 known as “Pious Desires”. In this book he promoted, or in some instances introduced, a division of “heart and head” giving the “heart” (feeling, emotion, personal experience) greater emphasis and importance than the “head” (intellect, reasoning, exegesis). Up to this point, the reformers taught the Scriptural principles of dying to selfish desires and sins of the flesh by way of the Holy Spirit and by that same Spirit live to Christ by way of being transformed by the renewing of one’s mind with Scripture and by taking thoughts captive bringing them to the obedience of Christ. This led to a life that experienced true righteousness, joy, peace, patience etc as one’s mind was brought under rightful submission to God’s word in the way God intended it to be. Feelings and emotion were present in those days but they took a back seat to a rightly renewed mind/intellect by way of reading and applying the Bible. Spener’s teaching that the heart was somehow separate from the head (which is false – it is all part of the essence of who we are) would result in a doctrine whereby those who lived by “on fire” feelings (rollercoaster of up-and-down Christianity) would cast shame on those who used their whole hearts i.e. mind first, emotions second to worship, follow, and obey God’s word.

According to Spener – doctrine is “useless if not on fire” which sounds deep, spiritual, and authentic, but in reality, Spener’s definition of “fire” is merely ecstatic emotionalism regardless of what Scripture has to say on the issue. This elevation in authority of how we are “feeling” while reducing sound truthful doctrine to mere “head knowledge” was truly cutting edge for his day. Today, this is a staple doctrine of nearly every apostate church in America including the vast majority of “Pentecostal” churches and all charismatic churches. As a result of this “feeling” worship, many are now being led astray and further afield from the God of truth who calls us to worship Him in spirit (not feeling) and truth (as a thing actually exists).

Spener also placed greater importance on preaching “practical application” topical studies and allegorical application for daily life as opposed to that of correct doctrine: sin, repentance, salvation, Christology, theology proper. This erroneous approach to reading, interpreting, and applying Scripture did not begin with Spener, but rather 1300 years earlier with a man named Origen c.290-325 B.C. Oddly enough, although the Roman Catholic church refused to canonize Origen (i.e. there is not “Saint” before Origen’s name as with the other Church fathers) because of his theological meltdown late in life which included, among other things, universalism and the idea that demons can and will one day be saved, they still fully embraced his allegorizing Scripture passages. Allegorizing passages that weren’t intended for this approach, enabled the Roman Catholic leaders to make the Scriptures say whaterve they wanted them to say and thereby exalt the Roman See into a position of dominance and control. They would use allegory to justify a “priesthood” separate and higher than a lower “laity”, compulsory abstinence of those priests in direct contradiction to Scripture, infant baptism, Papal authority/infallibility, deification of Mary & dead believers they began to confer the title of “saint” to, and many more.

It would take reformers like Peter Waldo of the Waldnesians, John Wycliffe, John Hus, Martin Luther, Ulrich Zwingli, John Knox, and John Calvin to call attention to these allegorical nightmares and pull people back to the plain reading literal interpretation of the Bible. The reformation principle was simple, where the Bible was clearly literal it was to be received accordingly and where the intention of the writer was clearly allegorical or metaphorical (He hides me in the shadow of His wings…) it was to be received and interpreted in light of the context of the given passage or book and in harmony with the rest of God’s Word (the difficult passage interpreted in light of the plain passage). The reformation movement cleaned out much of Origen’s and the Roman Catholic allegorical garbage in nearly all areas except the Book of Revelation which has a large number of Bible-believing protestants who dismiss this book (almost entirely) due to the assumption from Origen that it is nothing more than allegory or was given post-predictive in that everything in Revelation supposedly happened already by 70 A.D. except the actual final day of judgement where Jesus returns (amillenialism).

Spener reintroduced this allegorical approach to reading, interpreting, and applying the Bible which has resulted in additional theological problems for the Methodists, Holiness, and Pentecostal movements who would follow in the wake of his teachings as they made their way down through history .

Among Spener’s Pietist groups were completely upside down and inside out views of Christian living whereby Christians were instructed to have internal focus on how they are doing in their Christian walk and how they should be “helping” the sanctification practice. This was in direct opposition to the teaching of the Reformers which states that we are to recognize that we are lost miserable wretches in and of ourselves and we are desperately dependent on the Holy Spirit’s work in our life: first to put to death the deeds of the flesh and second to bring about sanctification where we are made more like Christ with each passing day or year.

This new internal focus and emphasis would predictably degenerate into mysticism and many of them were soon to be led astray by various fringe groups like Zinzendorf’s Hernhutt. This internal emphasis would greatly impact John Wesley and his writings which then resulted in aberrant teachers like Charles Finney and Phoebe Palmer who would then go down in history as founders of the Holiness and Higher Life movements, out of which both doctrines and preachers would emerge to form the earliest appearances of the Neo Pentecostal movement in the late 19th century.

AD 1670

Doctrines introduced to Christianity by Pietists

Preaching is devotional not doctrinal – any doctrine unrelated to life is irrelevant
But of course he puts himself and pietist preacher in the position of determining what doctrine is related and unrelated to life

Complete abstinence of modern habits – smoking, drinking, dancing, theatre, cinema – this is personal holiness to them.
This found its way into Pentecostalism today where smoking and drinking are more damnedable sins than pride, greed, and deception in the name of “faith” – many Pentecostal churches and “seminaries” which are widely known to practice the above are Assemblies of God, Foursquare International, and Oral Roberts University – but all are famous for drinking and smoking abolition but don’t really put an emphasis on avoiding greed, love of money, and deceptive false healings for a show.
Stress on personal devotional life and evangelism – I can agree with this one, however the personal devotion of a pietist involves long wordy prayers to God as if teaching him or twisting him to do a thing He might not have been inclined to do otherwise all as a result of “travailing” in prayer. Again, a mainstay expectation of Pentecostals today.

Charismatic pentecostalism, has taken the opposite position to this tenet of Pietism. In the Charismatic movement, the minister is a celebrity to be ushered safely out of the congregation less his or her anointing and impartation leak out on to the wrong person! In truth both Pietists and Pentecostals get this wrong as there is no such thing as “laity”. We are all ministers and some have giftings to teach, to pastor, to lead, etc and those who have chosen to be a part of that congregation support that leader in an effort to keep him (not her) on track and teaching God’s Word in truth.

Emotions are more important than intellect – orthodoxy is of no use unless it is “on fire”.
They are suspicious of academia and anything requiring the intellect.
Prays for revival than to work for reformation.
This is all about them trying to make things happen instead of trusting the Lord at his word and placing our faith in His sustaining work and grace in perfecting the church. Also, it is quite evident from Scripture that there will be a gradual trend toward apostasy and not revival which is what we’re seeing today with groups like mainline denominaitonalism, pentecostalism, seeker sensitivism, and Roman Catholicism. Also Christianity has a purported 2.1 billion adherents – it is really closer to about 70 million Bible-believing, Bible-based Christians that truly adhere to the 5 solas of the Reformation.
Highly introspective – always asking how good they are doing that day.
We are to judge ourselves and thereby make appropriate corrections to behaviour via repentence, however, the pietist way is to try to perform their own sanctification which is the job of the Holy Spirit. This tenet can be good but if practised out of balance it can result in a sense of futility in our Christian walk.

At the outset this sounds perfectly nice and pure, why wouldn’t we want more foreign missions!? The sad truth is, like the converts of charismatic an pentecostal movements, we then started to see entire nations that have only ever known a “feelings and emotions” form of pseudo-Christianity and have never been given the actual truth of the gospel according to God’s word through doctrinal preaching of sin, hell, atonement, Jesus’ resurrection, life in Christ, the Bible as fully sufficient, true sanctification, etc. They are being left vulnerable to cult groups like the Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and the Charismatic signs and wonders and word faith cults which is spreading like wildfire throughout India and Africa.

Nikolaus Von Zinzendorf - Spener's successor

Spener’s successor to Pietist leadership was a man named Nikolaus Von Zinzendorf, a Lutheran Pastor who took in a group of refugees from the Moravian church who were under intense slaughter and persecution from the Roman Catholics who had an intense hatred for their founder(s) John Hus and earlier John Wycliffe. Zinzendorf opened his Hernhutt abode/estate and allowed them to lived there as a type of commune with Zinzendorf as Pastor. During this time, Zinzendorf read Spener’s “Pious Desires” and was profoundly impacted by what he read. He began to take Spener’s aberrant doctrine to bizarre extremes and insisted that his followers did the same: Moravian Pietism was officially born.

It is important to note that Moravian Pietists are not the same as the Moravian Church who was a small pre-reformation band who largely followed the teachings of John Hus’ Unity of the Brethren and John Wycliffe and who predate the both Zinzendorf and Spener. Fragments of this group still exist today as the “Moravian Church” and are distinctly different from the Moravian Pietists started by Zinzendorf’s embrace of Philip Spener’s writings.

Zinzendorf developed his Moravian followers in a form of spirituality that some claim brought about a “renewal” in 1727 whereby some referred to spiritual “experiences” and a “baptism in the Holy Spirit”. His teachings are on record as being heretical and bizarre in that he denies the deity of Jesus in some places and speaks of a sexual union with Christ’s wounds. His blasphemy was denounced by John Wesley who was sympathetic to Spener’s beliefs. Like all cult leaders, Zinzendorf placed a great emphasis on “divine revalation” and de-emphasised proper exegesis of God’s word. This “man of god” dominance over a commune is seen across charismatic churches today with teachers like Kenneth Copeland, Benny Hinn, T.D. Jakes etc. Zinzendorf was called the “prophet of the heart” because of his continuing in Spener’s emphasis on heart over head. By now, this “feeling and emotion” based belief system had abandoned taking God at His word the Bible by faith and then began to embrace the experiential as supreme. Its clear that in only a few years, Spener’s “heart over head” had degraded into outright esoteric mysticism with Zinzendorf.

Out of this divine revelation emerged an even heavier emphasis on prayer. This sounds great at first mention but not upon further inspection. As the old mysticism of Roman Catholic monks (who adopted it from Eastern religions) perverted the idea of straightforward communication with God as taught by Jesus, into a works-based 100 year prayer session . You read that correctly, that was 100 years of prayer. This is in direct opposition to the Scripture which says, “God is in heaven and you are on earth, let your words be few” . It is obvious works-based prayer (to which god is hard to know!) in an effort to change God’s mind and coerce his cooperation on things like world missions etc. This works-based prayer approach is often the fodder of boasting by many charismatic false teachers like Phil Johnson, Kris Vallotton, and Rick Joyner of the NAR cult and Mike Bickle of the Kansas City Prophets who formed International House of Prayer (IHOP) as a “24 Hour Prayer” center to their god The god to which these false teachers and false prophets/apostles etc pray to is hard to figure out. Apparently it tells them to practice forms of yoga and kria jerking and shaking seen only in Hinduism, so I can only assume their god is an Eastern mystical god. Zinzendorf’s over-emphasis on time and energy in prayer to change God’s mind/heart etc. has clearly passed down through the last 300 years and has re-emerged in numerous bizarre cults and can be seen today in the teachings of cultists like the NAR and IHOP. However it should be noted that Philip Seymour prayed all night over night for hours and hours until he received the 'gift of tongues' after this, his clear exhaustion and self-delusion resulted in an unbiblical ecstatic speech.

AD 1727

Quietism and Dominionism: Mystical Mind Clearing Prayer

Mystical communication with God, extra-Biblical revelation, emotion and feeling over intellect, and separation of “heart and head” are all common theological and ecclesiological staples of Charismatic Pentecostalism today. Our chronological journey to the centre of the charismatic departure from the biblical historical Christian faith brings us to one of the earliest “Christianized” forms of Eastern mystical meditation called Quietism. This movement has travelled across the centuries and over the years became deeply embedded in the holiness, pentecostal, charismatic and even some pseudo-evangelical groups. Quietism has been repackaged and renamed for today’s anti-biblical false churches as ‘contemplative prayer’ within the visible Christian church.

Contemplative prayer has been promoted in the church for more than a few decades. For the first 10-12 years of my Christian walk I was instructed/ exhorted by various Calvary Chapel, Assemblies of God and Foursquare leaders, to practice “quieting” or clearing my mind by “being still” before the Lord by citing Scripture passages like Psalm 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God” and/or Ecclesiastes 5:2 “God is in heaven and you are on earth, let your words be few”. However, those passages have nothing to do with “clearing” your mind or even prayer for that matter. Jesus never prayed that way and never recommended that any of His disciples pray that way either! This technique is not only unbiblical, it is nothing more than a Christianized form of eastern meditation!

This method of “connecting” with deity is actually found in Hinduism and then Buddhism following on from there. So it is safe to say that quietism, along with praying the rosary beads and other Roman Catholic practices were clear importations of Eastern paganism into Christian practice and ecclesiology. This simply means that yet another non-Biblical error has crept into the church and is wreaking havoc in the faith of many young Christians as it did mine. A person’s Christian walk, witness, and experience can be terribly impacted by this false doctrine of prayer by “eastern meditation” as it opens the door to delusion and deception in his (or her) life.

Miguel De Molinos - Quietism emptying the mind

Quietism got its start in a Spanish Catholic priest named Miguel De Molinos who, in 1675, was both a mystic and a practitioner of a prayer style he called passifism whereby, like Hindus and Buddhists over the centuries prior, Molinos would engage in the “emptying of the mind” and would abstain from all rational thought in an effort to be a clean slate for God to speak to. This was not only embraced by the “anti-rational / anti-mind” Pietists, holiness, higher lifers, and pentecostals to follow in the 18th and 19th centuries but was imported wholesale by Hinduism into western thought in the 1970’s as part of the Transcendental Meditation cult of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and further embraced by some early signs and wonders charismatics thereafter.

In the late 17th century, Molinos was declared a heretic by the Roman Catholic church – not for his extra-Biblical mysticism but rather for usurping the RC authority teaching against the Catholic doctrine of the responsibilities of mankind in his own salvation and sanctification. Ironically, centuries after his being declared a heretic, it would be Molinos idea of “quietist” prayer practice that the newer “progressive” Catholic Church would embrace.

It is important to note that many so-called evangelical churches are also now joining the charismatic cults by departing from the Biblical model of prayer in favor of Molinos’ Hindu quietist “contemplative prayer” mentioned before. Molinos’ prayer doctrine would have a dramatic impact on two women, Jane Leade and Madam Guyon who would further spread mysticism and paganism far beyond the Christian “prayer closet”. One of whom would introduce, by mystic vision, a new heresy which would be the underlying theology for nearly all Charismatic Pentecostals.

AD 1675

Jane Leade - Inventor of dominion theology

Jane Leade was a 17th century mystic and early Quietist adherent who sought to disengage all rational mind in order to be a clean slate in the brain to hear from God and be truly “spiritual”. Continuing in the Hindu/Buddhist practice called “passivism” which was being widely spread by Madam Guyon at the time. Leade was not a Bible-believing Christian but rather more of a Unitarian who was highly apocalyptic and eschatological in her writings. She had an extra-biblical vision of a being which called itself “God’s Eternal Virgin-Wisdom” which gave her universalist enlightenment (the idea that all go to heaven and that none go to hell – contrary to Jesus & His Apostles words in Scripture). She believed in more of a “God’s gentleness” of the last days as opposed to God’s judgement and wrath on evil of which the Bible speaks.

This is decidedly the approach of today’s charismatic who no longer considers God’s judgment as a certainty of the future on all mankind but rather a surprising “Good-mooded” God (Bill Johnson) lavishing love and kindness on all His creation – even those that insist on remaining in their sin, rebellion, and refuse to repent and receive forgiveness which comes from the horrific price God the Son paid on the cross for them.

From her Eternal Virgin visions, Leade predicted an elite church at end of age greater than any church that existed which are identical to the false prophecies of YWAM founder, Lorne Cunningham’s "7 Mountain" dominion theology which he claimed the Lord "gave him" in a dream. Just as Cunningham copied this unitarian theology from Leade, Lance Wallnau then copied it from the Charismatic Cunningham and would pass it on to charismatic cult leaders Rick Joyner, and Bill Johnson’s New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) latter rain dominionism.

Leade believed in 7 church ages and not the 7 separate churches of Revelation which was a bit of a break from the amillenialism view of the Roman Catholics and other mainline denominations of the post-reformation period. Leade also claimed to receive what she called a “60 point prophecy” in the “Philadelphia Society” (Philadelphia Church). She claimed that the Church must be perfected before Christ can return (same idea as Latter Rain Movement and NAR today) with greater miracles than Jesus performed. The church will be impregnated by the Holy Spirit and will give birth to a man or chosen men (a new breed). The church becomes the incarnation of God and must be a pure spirit herself. Christ is held in the heavens until this perfect incarnate church is “made ready”. This same teaching is found in Latter Rain Movement which is prevalent among charismatic signs and wonders cults. She taught that Christ is coming IN the church not FOR the church. The virginal church will give birth to a many-membered man-child (super church). This is the woman of Revelation 12 that gives birth that becomes the incarnation of Christ on the earth with powers to defeat evil. This is a completely false prophecy from a total false prophet in that it completely contradicts the Bible which communicates that the church does not give birth to Jesus but rather Jesus’ work on the cross gives birth to the church.

In addition to Molinos’ Quietism and Madam Guyon’s Passivism, another of Leade’s greatest influences was German mystic Jacob Boehme who believed, like Buddhists and Hindus, that god has two wills: one good and one bad (cf yin and yang, two gods of Montanism). It is from this pagan concept that Leade derived her “Law of Circularity” whereby she, like Boehme, believed and taught that all things, including satan, will return to supposed perfection and goodness – which is a further doubling down on her universalist theology. Her once-bizarre now commonplace theological error and heresy would lend a tremendous amount of influence of the New Apostolic Reformation today whose signs and wonders charismatics are now searching back in the archives for Leade’s writings as an encouragement that what they believe is “from the Lord”. Sadly, it is not from the Lord but rather is a satanic deception birthed centuries ago by a non-christian unitarian but is now coming to full fruition as part of the “Great Apostasy” of the church predicted by the Apostle Paul in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3.

AD 1694

Shakerism

Shakerism is more of a cult than a movement in that this group’s founder, Ann Lee, believed and taught that she was the female incarnation of Christ and that the group was living in the “millennial” reign of Christ. The group was founded in England in 1770 as a splinter group of the Quakers (error begets error and heresy begets heresy) when Ann Lee had the vision that Christ was to return as a woman and she was that woman! They practiced ecstatic tongues and trembling and shaking “in the spirit” and later in the “era of manifestations” there would be widespread visions and prophecies.

No real direct link has been found from Shakerism to modern charismatic pentecostals but charismatics often quote the Shakers as an example of the “gifts of the spirit” in practice back in the 18th century - as a way of legitimizing the modern-day unbiblical practice of ecstatic experience. “Mother Ann” as she began to be called moved her group to America in 1774 where the movement exploded in numbers (18 communities in eight states). Shakerism has slowly but surely shrunk down to such small numbers (1000 in the early 20th century and just 1 small group in Maine by 2019) that it could be considered an “obsolete cult”. As with many cults, the practice of abstinence was demanded as a demonstration of one’s fighting off “doleful sin” and it is this practice which has historically affected numbers in other cults and it was no different with this Shaker-Quaker cult.

AD 1770

Arminian Theology & Christian Perfectionism

Although it might seem quite surprising to mention Methodism in a discussion about Pentecostal Foundations, we must indeed turn our eyes to another formative theological error that has shaped Pentecostalism, and ultimately the charismatic, over the years and continues to do so today.

The error is called “Christian perfectionism” or “Second Work of Grace” and its primary purveyor is none other than the Arminian Anglo-Pietist founder of Methodism, John Wesley.

John Wesley, an Anglican preacher to the day he died, came to conversion aboard a ship from America heading back to his home to England whereby he witnessed the “calm and peace” of a group of believers who were Moravian Pietists. Their methodology coupled with his Grandmother’s “methods” of daily devotion witnessed in his youth, would bring Wesley to what he believed was a true conversion to Christ.

John Wesley contributed Christian Perfectionism and Arminianism to the Holiness Movement which then passed on to the Pentecostal movement down to today’s Charismatic churches.

Self-effort Piety Leading to Unscriptural Experiences:

The Pietism discussed above resulted in the conversion of one of its greatest proponents and the creation of one of its greatest denominations when John Wesley was converted and went on to lay the groundwork for the Methodist denomination.

Wesley embraces and teaches Christian perfectionism 10 years before converting to Christ at Aldersgate

Wesley made tragic contributions toward the very early theology of both Holiness and Pentecostal Movements which would follow his teachings through Charles Finney and Phoebe Palmer shortly after his death. In life, Wesley began to teach of “Entire Sanctification” or “Christian Perfectionism”. Declared in his “Scripture Way of Salvation” that sanctification was every bit a work of grace through faith as much as justification and that God gives sanctification gradually for some and instantaneously for others. That we can seek for this “perfection” as a “second gift” of grace and should earnestly desire it.

"A year or two after, Mr. Law's "Christian Perfection" and "Serious Call" were put into my hands. (1728) These convinced me, more than ever, of the absolute impossibility of being half a Christian; and I determined, through his grace, (the absolute necessity of which I was deeply sensible of;) to be all-devoted to God, to give him all my soul, my body, and my substance"

Although Wesley referred to this as a “Second Blessing” while his associate John Fletcher went a step further in referring to it as a “Baptism in the Holy Spirit”. This bizarre doctrine, defined in Wesley’s own words on page 12 of his writing “A Plain Account of Christian Perfectionism”, he writes

“…that habitual disposition of the soul which, in the sacred writings, is termed holiness; and which directly implies being cleansed from sin, ‘from all filthiness both of flesh and spirit’; and, by consequence, being endued with those virtues which were in Christ Jesus; being so ‘renewed in the image of our mind,’ as to be ‘perfect as our Father in heaven is perfect’.

And a few pages further into this work he continues,

“In this is perfection, and glory, and happiness: the royal law of heaven and earth is this, ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all they heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength.’ The one perfect good shall be your one ultimate end” (Ibid.). Lastly, perfection is “deliverance from inward as well as from outward sin” (ibid., p. 26) and “a Christian is so far perfect as not to commit sin” (ibid., p. 25).

This doctrine was fully and completely embraced by Holiness founders Charles Finney and Phoebe Palmer and was elevated to a near-essential doctrine of their holiness (pietist re-invented) variety of the Christian faith. It would eventually meld into the event of the “baptism of the holy spirit” whereby Pentecostals of the late 19th century down to today believe themselves to be “fully sanctified” even referring to themselves in such terms.

When a charismatic Pentecostal is confronted with the idea that he/she is a sinner, saved by grace, but still a sinner. They will recoil in utter horror at such an inference, believing that such a belief is “of the devil” when in reality, it is in Scripture, which modern day Charismatics utterly reject in favor of “Holy Ghost revelation”. Meanwhile, the moral failures of these “fully sanctified” Pentecostal leaders is splashed across every newspaper website and news station.

They are clearly fallen and are broken just as the rest of mankind, however, because they don’t see any need of putting to death the deeds of the flesh and walking in the Spirit so as to grow in maturity in the Lord, they really never do experience sanctification or maturing in the Lord of any kind, being just as worldly twenty years on as they were when they supposedly were saved. This staple doctrine of Pentecostalism can find its direct root in the teachings of John Wesley.

Because Wesley’s emulated “methods” of Christian life and behavior, which he picked up from the Pietist, caught on wildly among Church of England adherents, his following grew exponentially and would eventually coalesce into a movement known as “Methodism” in 1744. Near the point of his death, Wesley then passed the reigns of this “movement” on to his second in command, Thomas Coke in 1784. Coke would form what would officially be called the “Methodist” denomination all from Wesley’s neo-Pietist movement and the official separation from the Anglican Church would be complete.

AD 1728

John Wesley Conversion

Wesley would fast and pray for long periods in keeping with the Pietist tradition that held that a person could somehow move God to action by way of strenuous self-denial and/or quantity of time in prayer. In similar fashion to the Quakers before him and the Holiness and Pentecostals after him, his long hours of prayer would, as with Quakers and Shakers before him, result in an “experience” which he deemed to be from the Holy Spirit. Nehemiah Curnley, editor of “The Journal of John Wesley” quotes Wesley on this experience:

"At about three in the morning, as we were continuing instant in prayer, the power of God came mightily upon us insomuch that many cried out for exceeding joy and many fell to the ground”

and in another place at a different meeting,

“Immediately one then another, and another sunk to the earth. They dropped on every side as if thunderstruck.”

These sorts of “experiences” would continue on in Wesley’s life such as the time when he was walking with his brother Charles singing hymns the two of them burst into extended and uncontrollable laughter – ending their session of singing due to the incessant laughter attack. All of these events were automatically deemed to be of the Holy Spirit, why? Because they were “praying” and “fasting” which were “holy” things to do and in their minds, as many before them, and many Pentecostals after them, nothing ungodly could or would ever take place in the mind or outside the mind of a Christian engaged in such rigorous “pious” activity. They believed that all of their zeal of piety would not yield deception no matter how contrary to Scripture the experience was!

AD 1738

Wesley embraces Arminian theology

Wesley rejected the Calvinism of his friend and co-minister Anglican pal George Whitfield in England and Wesley began to embrace instead, the doctrines of Jacobus Arminius who would teach that man was to “cooperate” with God and play a part in his own salvation in both justification and sanctification, in other words, a rejection of the absolute sovereignty of God. Arminius believed in the free will of man who must by an act of his own volition “repent – turn away from sin” and “turn to God of his own independent choice”. This doctrine perfectly lined up with the model of the Pietists Wesley witnessed on the boat from America along with the “methods” observed in his own grandmother. Arminianism was thereafter embraced by Wesley and would become a bedrock doctrine for all holiness, Pentecostal, and charismatic movements to follow.

Because all holiness preachers would fully embrace Wesleyan theology, they also embraced his Arminianist disposition. And because Pentecostal preachers would fully embrace holiness theology, they would also embrace Arminianism. Here is yet another contribution to the bedrock of Pentecostal formation by John Wesley.

Arminianism is an unscriptural error based on the belief that mankind “partners” with God for his salvation and is fully responsible for his own “salvific maintenance” after the point of salvation. Arminianists believe that if mankind fails in his maintenance to perform a specific way with an adequate amount of prayer, bible reading, witnessing, etc. he will eventually backslide back into the world from when he came and be lost. He must then get “born again” again and get a new regenerated spirit as his prior regenerated spirit was lost and died again somehow. This is similar to the Judaizer error found in Galatians whereby the Apostle Paul rebukes the Galatians by stating,

“Foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was for freedom that Christ set us free!”

This theology would be passed down to Charles Finney and the Holiness Movement and then pass wholesale into the Pentecostal and charismatic movements where it is firmly in place today.

circa
AD 1740

Embracing Montanist Heresy, Legitimizing Future Charismatic Lunacy:

Here is a quote directly from the Letters of John Wesley himself regarding cessationism as ungodly. He, like Augustine nearly 1300 years earlier, believes that the spiritual gifts of the church dissipated and disappeared due to the poor behavior of the church. Augustine felt that holiness was lost and therefore the gifts with it…wrong…here Wesley thinks it was “dry, formal, orthodox men who ridiculed whatever gifts they had not”…again, wrong! Both miss the clear indication of Scripture which declares that the Holy Spirit gives these gifts as HE wills not as man behaves properly – no one would ever have received a gift except Jesus Himself if this was the case. This is clearly spelled out in

1 Corinthians 12:7-11 But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8 For to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, and to another the word of knowledge according to the same Spirit; 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, and to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 and to another the effecting of miracles, and to another prophecy, and to another the distinguishing of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, and to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually just as He wills."

Wesley was not silent regarding the idea of anti-cessationism as he experienced himself or saw others experience divine healing. Compare the underlined Scripture verse above with the underlined erroneous statement of John Wesley below:

“Wed., Aug. 15, 1750 – By reflecting on an odd book which I had read in this journey, The General Delusion of Christians with Regard to Prophecy, I was fully convinced of what I had long suspected: (1) That the Montanists, in the second and third centuries, were real, scriptural Christians; and (2) That the grand reason why the miraculous gifts were so soon withdrawn, was not only that faith and holiness were well-nigh lost, but that dry, formal, orthodox men began even then to ridicule whatever gifts they had not themselves, and to decry them all as either madness or imposture.” and again he writes at a later time: I do not recollect any scripture wherein we are taught that miracles were to be confined within the limits either of the apostolic or the Cyprianic age, or of any period of time, longer or shorter, even till the restitution of all things. I have not observed, either in the Old Testament, or the New, any intimation at all of this kind. St. Paul says, indeed, once, concerning two of the miraculous gifts of the Spirit (so, I think, that test is usually understood), “Whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease.” But he does not say, either that these or any other miracles shall cease till faith and hope shall cease also, till they all be swallowed up in the vision of God, and love be all in all. (Telford, The Letters of John Wesley, nd. 2:261).

These statements and experiences are all recorded nearly 160 years before Azusa which should tell us all that Pentecostalism did not begin at Azusa in 1906 or even Topeka in 1901 with Charles Parham. This system of theological beliefs and practices had long been percolating in the centuries leading up to Azusa.

AD 1750

Event Revival Chaos

As we cover each of these extra-biblical practices, we will not only see the emergence of Pentecostalism but identify key doctrines of the word faith and signs and wonders charismatic cults. It began with mysticism which encouraged extra-Biblical revelation. These errors led to emotionalism and feeling as either more reliable or equally reliable to Scripture for discerning truth from error. We then add to that practice the separation of “heart and head” in the Quakers and Shakers and then Eastern mystical meditation “quietism” in prayer which itself led to even greater mysticism. This Quietism then joined with a self-sufficient practice of righteous self-effort in the form of Pietism which ultimately gave rise to Arminianism (self-effort cooperation with God in the salvation process).

As if these erroneous (or even heretical) doctrines were not enough to wreak spiritual havoc and deception in a person’s life, add to that, the bizarre salvation doctrine of Dominionism – the theological belief that the church must make itself holy through dominion over the world “mountains” of influence in order to enable or free Jesus to come back, and Christian perfectionism – the idea that Christians are somehow instantly and invisibly made perfect with no further need of the ongoing sanctification process spoken of in scripture (becoming more mature in Christ and thus more like Christ).

The next bizarre ‘experiential’ unbiblical practice to be introduced into the church after Wesley’s perfectionism and Armenian doctrines, was the focus and practice of revivals as “events” and the introduction of Hindu Krya (jerks) as a supposed legitimate manifestation of the Holy Spirit. These Krya jerk movements are all but commonplace in the signs and wonders cults of Bill Johnson and the New Apostolic Reformation. We owe this latest doctrine of “violent manifestion as unquestionably God at work” to a man named Barton Stone and his “Cane Ridge Revival” event. This method of “mobile religious hype under a tent” would go on to become the blueprint for all other Holiness and Pentecostal and charismatic “revival meetings” which would follow even up to this day.

James McGready: Founder of sensationalism

Barton stone was a Presbyterian preacher who did not believe that Jesus was God incarnate and did not hold that the Holy Spirit was a “person” but rather some sort of “Divine Source” for power (c.f. Jehovah’s Witness). He slowly grew disenchanted also with the Calvinist view of predestination to which his denomination adhered firmly. Despite this, he was given two congregations to oversee – Concord and Cane Ridge Churches.

Embraces and teaches Christian perfectionism 10 years before converting to Christ at Aldersgate

George Whitfield pioneered theatrical preaching in an outdoor setting as a means to hold attention en masse but a fire and brimstone preacher named James McGready expanded the outdoor service from “show” to hyper-emotional experiential “event” which it is among Pentecostals today. This new invention of the camp meeting revival impacted Barton Stone immensely as he heard the fiery preaching of James McGready. Barton would later recall of the experience:

“My mind was chained by him, and followed him closely in his rounds of heaven, earth, and hell with feelings indescribable.””

McGready’s meetings were full of groaning, shrieking, crying ecstatic emotionalism just as Shakers and Quakers experienced several decades before. When Barton saw this, he immediately assumed it was from the Lord and he did not inquire of the Lord about it with a ready heart to hear God’s answer in His word the Bible. This was to be expected of a man who was not a believer in the God of the Bible to begin with.

Neither Stone nor modern day charismatic cultists sought to hear from the Lord by going to His word, the Bible because, in keeping with Pentecostal, Holiness, and Revivalist practice and teaching, these Pastors (and Stone) had been convinced that God speaks through emotion and experience just as loudly and accurately as the Bible, if not more. As a result of this failure to discern the spirits, which the Scriptures admonish us to do, Barton Stone would go on to state the following regarding McGready’s camp meeting revival:

“The scene to me was new and passing strange. … Many, very many fell down, as men slain in battle, and continued for hours together in an apparently breathless and motionless state—sometimes for a few moments reviving, and exhibiting symptoms of life by a deep groan, or piercing shriek, or by a prayer for mercy most fervently uttered. … With astonishment did I hear men, women, and children declaring the wonderful works of God.”

These experiences are nothing new as many Hindus had received these same experiences for centuries - which they attribute to the millions of false gods they worship - which the Bible says are nothing more than demons.

AD 1796

Cane Ridge Revival

Stone brought this McGready “experience” back to his church at Cane Ridge that they might experience the same. His three day meeting drew nearly 20,000 and overwhelmed the 500 seat meeting house and surrounding areas. The meetings had all the same ecstatic preaching and emotionalism as McGready’s meetings except things seemed to get even wilder as each day drew on.

The remarkable thing about the McGready-to-Stone-to-Event transferring of experience is strikingly similar to the Toronto Blessing of the early nineties where one of the charismatic signs and wonders cult leaders, John Arnott, witnessed similar bizarre manifestations by way of Rodney Howard Browne’s preaching at Lakeland, Florida and instead of asking the Lord and waiting on Him in His word, he moved in “Barton-like” presumption and carried it back to Toronto Vineyard and almost identical demonic manifestations would take place there as well!

Barton Stone simply acted as a spectator-host, never reigning in wild manipulation tactics of preachers but simply allowing things to descend into chaos, all in the name of “glorifying” the Lord. This is in opposition to Scripture which clearly states (specifically with regard to spiritual practice) that God is not a God of confusion but of order. This specific passage has been quoted by Bible-believing Christians to Charismatics yet this passage is sneered and mocked (as most other Scripture) by the Charismatics as they believe that God only wants us to feel good and do what feels and “seems” best in our services. This is clearly a different worship of a different god than the God of the Bible.

As the shrieking, moaning, slain in the spirit, screaming overwhelmed the crowd, a very odd practice emerged which still plagues the likes of Bethel church meetings and other Charismatic meetings today: The Hindu Kriya. Among Hindus, the Kriya is an outward manifestation of jerking the head back suddenly, uncontrollably, and lurching in a spasm which, Hindus believe is evidence of a “Kundalini Awakening”. This exact experience is happening all over the world among two groups only: avid Hindu practitioners and Charismatics.

Keeping the above definition in mind of the Hindu Kriya have a look at the following report from 1801 of an eye witness to the Cane Ridge “Revival”:

“Their (Cane Ridge attendees) heads would jerk back suddenly, frequently causing them to yelp, or make some other involuntary noise. … Sometimes the head would fly every way so quickly that their features could not be recognized. I have seen their heads fly back and forward so quickly that the hair of females would be made to crack like a carriage whip, but not very loud.”

There were reports of the surrounding fields being laid out with the “slain” like a battlefield and sadly, one of Stone’s chosen guest preachers would proclaim while in a deeply emotional excited state that the people were hearing a “new gospel” (Christian History Issue #45 in 1995).

I agree with this eccentric pastor’s quote completely. They were indeed hearing a new gospel at Cane Ridge and it would be one which would plague the holiness and Pentecostal movements down to our current day. To safeguard against such deception the Apostle Paul writes in his epistle to the Galatians:

“But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” – Galatians 1:8

Charismatics today hearken back to Cane Ridge as a proof positive of a genuine “revival” accompanied with what they call “signs and wonders” but which are really manifestations of delusion or worse, the demonic. Charismatics cry, “Lord make it like Cane Ridge” – but are completely unaware that this was the hype of an unbelieving Presbyterian “pastor” and the doors that were opened were to a god who is different to the God of the Bible.

AD 1801

The Stone-Campbell Movement

After the three day Cane Ridge explosion subsided, Barton Stone would become more ecumenical and anti-denominational in his position. In 1804 he, and other Presbyterian ministers would sign what they called the “Last Will and Testament” which renounced their service to the Presbyterian denomination. Despite disbelief in the Deity of Jesus and the Person of the Holy Spirit, Stone would still accumulate a following from those rallying to his revolutionary creed of “No creed but the Bible” (which, oddly enough, is itself a creed) and “No name but the Name of Christ”.

What seemed to matter most to Stone and his companions was unity by way of ridding the church of denominations as opposed to unity around the truthful doctrine delivered by the Apostles in Scripture. Stone would refer to his new followers simply as “Christians” and the church as simply the “Church of Christ”. Without realizing it, Barton Stone was the founder of a non-denominational denomination called the “Church of Christ” which is still going strong today.

AD 1804

The 19th century would introduce us to the false teachings of Charles Finney, The Holiness Movement, teachings and doctrines of anti-cessationism, a new “Second Work of Grace” which is Christian perfectionism, A “Third Work of Grace” and a “Second Baptism” called the “Baptism in the Holy Spirit”, faith healing, full healing now in the atonement of Jesus and more. All of these extra-biblical doctrines were introduced and embraced in these restorationist and holiness circles without question.

The 20th century would introduce us to ecstatic nonsense tongues supposedly received as a result of praying for the requisite number of hours and days. We would see the birth of the “Word faith” charismatic cult under founder E.W. Kenyon and then the “signs and wonders” charismatic cult introduced by Lonnie Frisbee who greatly impacted Jonathan Wimber who then influenced C. Peter Wagner who influenced the Kansas City Prophets who introduced Rodney Howard Browne who launched the bizarre signs and wonders charismatic cult in 1993 with a false revival at the Toronto Airport Vineyard.

Barton Stone 1804

Please understand, if you are truly seeking the Lord, to know Him, to find Him, to embrace His forgiveness for you at the cross of Calvary and yet, you find yourself at a Pentecostal or Charismatic church – I am not attacking you or any of the people I’ve mentioned on this page, rather I am a former pentecostal/charismatic, warning anyone and everyone to either avoid or leave any church which focuses on “signs, wonders, feelings, experiences, and/or emotion” and those churches which preach the lie of “health and wealth” faith healing doctrines.

These false teachers, prophets, apostles do not preach the full sufficiency of Scripture for a believing Christian and because of this, they are dangerous as they will only draw followers into further deception with a “different” gospel to the one true gospel delivered to us by the Apostles and recorded in the pages of scripture.

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