Heresies Overtaking Churches Today, Pt 1
One of the things that has been overtaking many churches today and even Christendom itself is the belief that if Christians will just pray harder, apply more effort to the situation, and get the word out by being politically active, America will change for the better. Over the years, this has become a more dominant belief within Christendom. The problem though is whether or not it’s sound from a biblical perspective.
Whether it’s called Replacement Theology, Joel’s Army, Latter Rain, or even a more recent appellation like The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR), the intent is the same. It is to change the world for Christ. Even though that may sound good on the surface, the truth of the matter is that considering the roots of these belief systems determines whether or not they are biblically based. Writer Marsha West explains.
“Today there is a damnable heresy in the Church that many Christians haven’t yet heard of: The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) a.k.a. Dominionism/ Kingdom Now/Replacement Theology. Those who disagree with their false gospel must be removed through intense ‘spiritual warfare’ and by raising up a ‘new breed’ of Christian they call an ‘Army of God’.”
Those who even dabble in the realm of Dominion Theology (under any name) are saying that Israel is no longer viable and the Church has fully replaced that nation as God’s favored entity. They argue that God never really intended to use Israel beyond birthing the Messiah. Some argue that God wanted to use Israel for much more but due to their continued and abject rejection of God and His commands, God was left with no choice but to create the Church, which (they say) has pushed Israel to the side.
Beyond this, those who accept and even teach principles connected with Dominion Theology fully believe that the purpose of the Church, while spreading the gospel, should actually be dominated by a strong sense of community even if that means with people who are not Christian, in order to accomplish what they believe God wants to accomplish here on earth. In essence, this means that it is okay for Christians to partner with unbelievers if the goal toward world renewal is the main objective. This is in spite of the fact that we are told in Scripture to not have fellowship with unbelievers. Paul tells us this point-blank in 2 Corinthians 6:14.
“Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?“
It’s a good question Paul asks. What fellowship has light with darkness? The truth though is that too many believe that we should connect with people of other faiths and religions (or no religion) if our goal is the same. We must ask the question then…what is the goal?
The goal for those involved in New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) is to change the world. That means empowering people who are “open” to positive change and it doesn’t matter whether or not they are of the Islamic religion or the Christian faith.
Here are some comments made by Rick Warren several years ago regarding his P.E.A.C.E. plan and how he wants to affect the world.
“Who’s the man of peace in any village – or it might be a woman of peace – who has the most respect, they’re open and they’re influential? They don’t have to be a Christian. In fact, they could be a Muslim, but they’re open and they’re influential and you work with them to attack the five giants. And that’s going to bring the second Reformation.“
Please note the section I’ve bolded. Warren has no problems including Muslims in his plan to change the world. After all, the goal is to attack the “five giants” and anyone of any faith (or not) can and should do that. What are his five giants?
- Spiritual emptiness
- Self-serving Leadership
- Ignorance (or illiteracy)
The five items listed above certainly have an air of religiosity to them, don’t they? Who does not want to eliminate spiritual emptiness, poverty, disease, etc.? These are things anyone with a brain and half a heart can get behind. Jesus isn’t even needed to accomplish this at all.
Someone put together a list of probable/possible heresies and heretics. It’s a fascinating list and I would recommend reading through it. You may find that you don’t agree at several points, but the writer makes a good case for the fact that so many heresies have found their way into the church today. We need to be aware and alert to the possibilities that might exist in our own church. As you peruse the list, please note that many of the heresies listed are connected to Dominion Theology, the belief that those within Christendom can change the world if they put their minds to it.
You may be asking, “Dr. Fred, why is that such a bad thing?” Simply because it is not Scriptural. There is nothing in Scripture that tells us that it is the Christian’s job to change the world. Our only job is to join in fulfilling the Great Commission (Matthew 28). People agree with this while adding, “Yes, and as God changes people, those people will change the world!” No, that’s not what God ever says. In fact, if we understand what the Bible tells us, we learn that as things progress up to the time of Jesus’ second advent, when He will return to this world in judgment, things will go from bad to worse, not from bad to good or better.
The only way a person can come to the conclusion that many within Dominion Theology have arrived at is by allegorizing Scripture in the first place. They stop taking it literally and choose to apply a metaphorical meaning to it. This gives them the leeway to see the Church as replacing Israel. The church (or America, since it was founded upon biblical principles) then becomes the “new” Israel and as such, is seen as having the right to rule here on earth.
The movie War Room plays this up. At one point, we see the older black woman’s character praying in her “war room” (prayer closet) and she calls upon God to “raise up an army!” This army is not intended to preach the gospel. It is intended to change the world so that Jesus will be able to rule this world through Christians and those who profess to be Christian. But again, remember what Warren said. He didn’t even care if the person he worked with was a Muslim as long as the larger goal of destroying the “five giants” listed above is in mind.
We will be back to discuss this issue next time by learning more about the The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR). We’ll learn who’s behind it, how it started, and its goals. Join me then.
Entry filed under: christianity, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology, salvation. Tags: c peter wagner, dominion theology, dominionism, heresy, joel's army, latter rain, manifest sons of god, replacement theology, rick warren peace plan, The New Apostolic Reformation (NAR).