Simon Kok is a big fan of Dr. James White’s Dividing Line, gives a loving response from a Dutch Calvinist perspective. Simon lives in Finland where he attends a pentecostal church.
Margot Murray from down under has requested the text from Simon’s presentation so here it is for all to enjoy.
Listen or watch Simon’s presentation: HERE
Hello again, it’s me, your random insignificant dutch calvinist guy from finland.
I’m a long time watcher of the Dividing Line by Dr. James White.
Dr. White; God has truly used you and your ministry in my life. I’m a big fan. You’ve taught me many valuable things, such as the importance of always being truthful, always striving to be consistent, always being fair in criticism and always having equal scales. In spite of recent controversies, nothing really has changed for me, regarding you and your ministry. After watching this, or listening to it on one of your bike rides, you may dismiss me as the insignificant random calvinist that I am, who has nothing to say to you. You may as well just not even bother. That will not change anything for me. I’ll still be eagerly waiting for the next church history lesson, the next Dividing line, even your upcoming black hebrew israelite debate with dr. Michael Brown.
What encourages me with people like you, is that you are not unreachable in the same way some other people are. You have a social media precense and you interact with people. Other people like their privacy. That’s perfectly fine. But social media is an interesting thing. If I sent you an email, which is supposed to be a private and confidential means of communication, I’ll probably never get an answer back, let alone a notification of some sort, that my message has been received. It’s the same way with any american ministry that has a ton of email coming in every day. Social media on the other hand is totally contrary. For one, I can be absolutely certain, that you are notified, when I comment or tweet at you, not that I do that much anyway. There’s nothing in between you and us, no screening, nobody sifting through email to filter out the stuff you don’t need to be bothered with, busy as you are. Not only that, but it’s instant and public.
When this whole volcano of controversy started erupting, I looked at these people who found your interfaith dialogue questionable, their online interaction with you, and thought: gee, why don’t they just pick up the phone and call you? I thought you people were friends with each other. And only very recently I’ve started to wonder whether or not it actually is the case, that men with a status in the body, such as you, who are established names, have a busy speaking schedule and are looked up to by many, are in reality just unreachable and unteachable, unable to accept criticism? This is a behavior pattern that very much worries me. I’ll demonstrate.
This is a tweet by Aomin, on 16th November 2017:
The tweet is a DL title that says: Orthodoxy, Justification, James 2, Dale Tuggy and Jordan Hall Rebukes Rodney Howard Brown. And there’s me, commenting: Please correct the title: it is Rodney Howard-Browne, a two-part surname with a dash in the middle and it ends with an E. I get it that you can’t edit tweets. What’s tweeted is tweeted. But you can edit the title at your website. And I checked: it still has not been corrected. Somebody in your ministry has seen my comment.
Why do I bother you with this? You ask. Simple. Faithfulness to ones principals start with the smallest things. In criticism, always be fair, always be truthful, always be respectful. This is not respectful. This is not respectful towards Rodney Howard-Browne. He is, I believe, a false teacher. But as a fellow man created in the image of God, he deserves the respect of his name written right. That is elemental in respectful behavior towards other people; to spell or pronounce their name right. I do remember you, dr. White, taking issue with the fact that Brannon Howse could not settle on one pronounciation of dr. Yassir Quadhi’s name. This disrespectful man. Can’t even pronounce his name.
You have also said publicly that you don’t like that Steve Camp calls you Jim. My name is Simon. My friends call me Joosef. Some people think they’re being clever and call me Saimon. That annoys me. Some people are jerks and call me Jooseppi. That angers me. I understand you. You have the right to not be addressed as Jim, and Rodney Howard-Browne has the right to have his name correctly spelled.
But this is also disrespectful toward me, a random insignificant listener, who cares about such things and wants to help. Hmm, there’s a famous false teacher’s name, misspelled. Somebody might see that and be turned away, because they think: these disrespectful people. Can’t even get my pastor’s name right. I was interested in calvinism and was told this is the place, but now I don’t care, what they have to say. I’ll help them. They are americans after all, and americans can’t spell. They probably just didn’t notice and they will be happy that I notified them, because they care about things like this. I learned that from them.
And I got a great answer: ”Sorry about that. Thanks for noticing. Have a nice day.” Not really. Instead: no answer. I get it, you probably didn’t write the title. Somebody else did. But since Aomin is so much identified with you, dr. White, the ministry as a whole should maintain these same principals, as you do; always fair, always respectful. Isn’t this the same thing as what you say about being a barrier for the gospel? Earning the right to be heard by learning, being respectful and representing the other side right? It starts with a persons name.
When you are criticized unfairly in your own opinion, dr. White, you are very eager to respond and you snap back at people in Twitter. And when people are not taken aback by that, but continue the dialog and answer back to you, it often times turns out, that they do have a point there. And this is something that bothers me a lot. It’s not only about you. Is there ever a time for admission? Okay. You’re right. I’m sorry I said that. I made a hasty judgement. What I see is silence. I’ll demonstrate.
This is the only tweet with the hashtag synergism matters. William Lane Craig’s cooperation with a Roman Catholic on “evangelization” surely says much about his response in that debate about false teachers in Christianity! Did he refer to the Pope? No, to Calvinists.
And here is mr. Aristotle’s Jedi, having a conversation with you. He says:
That was just a brief answer when put on the spot in a debate. He has explained why he isnt a Catholic on his site in detail. Mountain meet molehill
You respond, sarcastically:
Yes, I know. WLC must be defended at all costs. 🙂
And he responds:
Not really. He should be defended when appropriate. I’m not exactly a WLC cheerleader
What he gave you was a good answer. You made assumptions about him and dismissed what he had to say on the basis of those assumptions. After this? No answer. Why?
Mr. Sgman said:
I’m sorry Dr. White, but I have to call you out on this one. WLC did not call Calvinists “false teachers.” He said he disagreed with some of their theology, but that it was a disagreement between brothers in Christ. Heresies and cults wouldn’t have fit the question.
And look, there’s me, making the same notion:
To be fair towards WLC, he meant “false” as synonymous with “incorrect”, not with “heresy”. It was just a first answer off the top of his head to an unexpected question. He even admitted there are probably areas where his own theology is “false”. We, OFC, know what those are 🙂 (he is wrong in not being a calvinist and not believing what Jesus believed about creation, for instance)
I believe you would agree with me that understanding the vocabulary of the other side is vital in order to have any meaningful interaction. That’s elementary in being fair. But here you are not being fair. You don’t listen to dr. Craig. You don’t let the context determine or shed light on what he means by using the word ”false”. You assumed the worst of him. You filtered his words through your own presuppositions and twisted what he said. That is not fair. The three of us pointed that out. But there’s no further answer from you. ”Guys, you’re right. I was not being fair. I’m sorry.” No such thing. You see no problem in defending dr. Michael Brown against these people, who fling all sorts of wild NAR accusations at him. And I think you’re right. But shouldn’t anybody be defended? Not just somebody, who happens to be your friend. I don’t even believe there is any NAR. There used to be, but after Peter Wagner died, everybody just ignored his silly ideas and went their own way, because they want to bask in their own glory and not somebody else’s. There’s just pentecostalism and it’s offshoots and pentecostalism is bad. Why do you have a problem then, with some of us defending dr. Craig against your unfair accusations? Always be fair, even towards those who disagree with you. Always be truthful, even about your enemies. I learned that from you, dr. White!
And if you deep in your heart do some self examination and come to understand, that yeah, even if that random insignificant guy from, was it sweden, no, it must’ve been russia, anyway, even if he doesn’t have a seminary education, doesn’t know greek, is not a scholar, and i have no reason whatsoever to listen to him; even then, he has a point; but yet you do not acknowledge it in any way, but fall silent; is that pride? Why are you on social media then? Why do you bring complex theology from the ivory towers down to our level? I thought in Christ we are at the same level. I thought God could use anybody to speak into somebody else’s life. If it’s for the purpose that we say huraa huraa to everything you say, well, what’s admirable about that? Then it is just a fan club and the white-can-do-no-wrong critics are right. But if it is for you do demonstrate that you truly are a ”people’s man”, so to speak, I don’t know how well that translates, why is it then, that nothing that people say that challenges what you say or do, seems to have any effect on you? ”Ok guys, youre right. I shouldn’t have said that. I shouldn’t have done that. I’m sorry.” Where’s that? I saw Steve Camp post the imam caricature of you, the one which was made by reformed apologetics ministries. I called that juvenile. But he deleted it, not because of me though. But that isn’t enough. I don’t know whether or not he apologised. ”I’m sorry, yes, I did that and that was childish.” I don’t know. If he did, that’s to his credit. But why is everybody like this? Why is it, that there never seems to be a place for ”I’m sorry. I should not have said that.”? Why?
In recent episoded of the Dividing Line you have responded a lot to critics of yours, who refuse to address you as doctor. You are clearly annoyed by that. That’s how bullies do it, dr. White. Let’s call him mr. White, that triggers him. Yeah! They poke you in the right place to provoke a reaction. I’m happy to call you dr. White, if that’s considered polite there across the pond. We don’t do that here. It sounds cheesy. But if somebody refuses to address you as doctor, why is it worth to get so worked up over? Why are you so jealous after a worldly title? That is the glory of this world and it will pass away. I will not be calling you dr. White in heaven. If somebody refuses to acknowledge your title, which is given to you by men, whose loss is it? Paul writes to the galatians: Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another. And to the thessalonians: We did not seek glory from men, because you are our joy and glory.
There’s a fairly recent controversy involving mr. Ravi Zacharias. Turns out he bloated his credentials. He called himself a doctor even though he isn’t one. I used to listen to him. God used him in my life. God taught me things through him. I said I used to listen to him, because I don’t much anymore. He basically has one and a half speech and once you’ve listened to him enough, you’ve heard it all. But I wouldn’t have cared if he didn’t call himself a doctor. He had something to say. That’s what I care about. Youtube gave me video suggestion of him recently, so I figured why not, and gave it a listen. That was before I learned about this. But I listened to that and there he told a story, which I probably had heard before, before becoming a cessationist, and just forgotten about. It was about a man, unnamed of course, who told him a supposed revelation that contained strange numbers. The man didn’t know what they were. ”Just say this to ravi, he’ll know what it means”, ”God” told him. So he did and Ravi didn’t know what they meant. Great. God was wrong. It was only a little later that mr. Zacharias ”cracked the code” so to speak: the numbers referred to the specific vertebrae that cause his back broblems. Whoa! God really speaks! It was at that point that I just turned off the video. This man has nothing to say to me anymore. I mean, who comes up with this stuff? This is just as silly and unnecessary as the psychic stuff. And the point of that is not to glorify God. See, what an awesome God we have, because he speaks in such a way, even today? No, it’s not. It is to glorify man. See, how God spoke to me. God sent a man to deliver a personal message to me. And the message concerned me. After all it was about me and my illness. And when I tell this legend to you, my audience, you should be in awe of me. This is really a man of God. God really speaks to him. Oh, I wish God would speak to me the way He spoke to him, the great man of God.
Isn’t this what desiring vain glory does to a man? It takes you to a dark place. How often do we get reminders of that? God demotes those who promote themselves. They climb on a stool and claim: I am something! And then God kicks the stool from beneath them.
Dr. White, I couldn’t care less if you are a doctor or not. You have something to say. I am listening. I am learning. You are very good at what you do. I have made a couple hours worth of material defending calvinism against a certain evangelist here, whose shtick seems to be to oppose whatever you’re currently ”supposed” to oppose, regardless of how consistent it is with the doctrinal frameworks he happens to hold to. I’ve gotten some good feedback and it has sparked some conversation. But I want to be able to say with Paul, that these people who were positively affected by what I do, would be my joy and my glory; meaning that my glory is the fact that God used me for the benefit of others. Isn’t that what you want too? That’s why this jealous defence of a title is so disturbing to me.
[I made a video, not long ago, where I address dr. Brown. In that video I say dr. Brown isn’t on my list of recommended christian resources, if anyone were to ask me. I may have to rethink that. You have made a compelling case for his Jewish objections series. That is pretty interesting, I must admit. I either wasn’t aware of it at the time or had forgotten about it. I think Steve Gregg’s eschatology book is also excellent. He isn’t a cessationist calvinist either. That means I contradicted myself there a bit. I’m sorry. It probably wasn’t the wisest thing to say.]
I have no problem with your friendship with dr. Brown. I have many pentecostal friends myself. I condemn this rhetoric that says Michael Brown goes to hell where he belongs. Such things are not said with any bit of brokenness. But. I try to explore these things from different vantage points. I try to find things to say that need to be said but aren’t.
The issue here is friendship. It is easy to condemn somebody as a false teacher, who isn’t your friend. What if Rodney Howard-Browne were your friend? Or Benny Hinn? Or Kenneth Copeland? To many of the critics of dr. Brown he is in the same category with the rest of them. But it is your friendship with him that sets him apart for you. Being friends with somebody really changes the way we address people, regardless of what is objectively true about them. When we look at the Toronto blessing, we say: false. Then we look at brownsville, see pretty much the same thing, do some digging, find out it really was linked to Toronto, that they visited Toronto and had visitors from there, we hear the false prophesies and the bad preaching, we see the financial devastation, spiritual ruin and broken relationships it left in its wake and we say: false! Objectively, positively, biblically, false!
The same way we have people like Bill Johnson or Jonathan Cahn or Jennifer LeClaire or Sid Roth. We listen to what they say and compare it to scripture, or listen to Chris Rosebrough do it for us, and we come to the conclusion: false! These people teach falsehoods! We can not change our opinion about them on the basis of the fact that dr. Brown is friends with them and is willing to exegete their ramblings for us so that they somehow would seem to us in more favorable light. Dr. Brown certainly has some academic credentials. But he has also been featured in the sermon review section of Fighting for the Faith! You don’t want to be there! Many of these people he invites on his show and interviews when he is sitting in for Sid Roth have been featured by Chris Rosebrough as well. That’s not a good thing!
But you, dr. White, you admitted that you don’t know anything about them. And believe me, I do understand why. There are only so many hours in a day. It’s okay! But if you don’t know, why do you take a side in this? Why do you let dr. Brown defend known false teachers on your show? What is this weird logic that since Michael Brown is okay, Bill Johnson is also okay? Bill Johnson is not okay! Bethel Church is not okay! Michael Brown can be friends with whoever he wants, but that doesn’t make his friends okay! You can be friends with Michael Brown, but that doesn’t make Michael Brown okay! For crying out loud, I’m a member of a pentecostal church that I would never recommend to any new believer. I love the people in my church! I don’t think they are all categorically hellbound false believers! But my church is not okay!
Bill Johnson and the Bethel folk have not repented of their gave sucking! They have not called it out for what it is: sinful, superstitious and occultistic. Does ”just not doing it anymore” really qualify as repentance? They will come up with something new. Benny Hinn hasn’t repented. Proof? He is still a pastor. He shouldn’t be. If Zaccheus is a picture of true repentance, born out of genuine regeneration, the money he owes to the people he has conned is something he can never pay back. Jonathan Cahn needs to repent of his deceptive end-times fiction books. What would repentance look like for him? Dear people, please send me back the books. I’ll refund them from my own money. I’ll cover postage. And then I’ll destroy them. And I’ll never write again. I’ll find a sound church somewhere, be a regular member there, get a regular job and never again pretend to be a bible teacher. It’s frightening, when people dig themselves a hole that deep.
With all due respect, dr. White, there are other apologists and ministers, who cover areas in spiritual life you yourself don’t have time to invest in. That’s why we, who are on the receiving end, listen to a lot of stuff all across the board. Here Fred Butler asks:
You don’t listen. Okay, fine. That’s why you don’t know. We do listen. That’s why we do know. There’s a lot to know out there. Thanks to you, I know a lot more about Islam and Calvinism than I used to know. And thanks to Justin Peters and Chris Rosebrough, for instance, I know a lot more about various forms of false teaching than I used to know. It was Justin Peters who supplied dr. Brown with a load of information about Benny Hinn; that’s information he didn’t even need, because he wrote a refutation of dr. MacArthur’s Strange fire, Authentic Fire, which means he has thoroughly researched dr, MacArthur’s book, which has 17 pages of Benny Hinn only, right? Justin Peters could do the same with Bill Johnson. The information is out there. But dr. Brown has no reason to defend Benny Hinn against Justin Peters, because they are not friends with each other. Friendship changes everything. But the solution in my opinion is not severing friendships, but rather acknowledging, that perhaps, because I am friends with this guy here, perhaps I should not address this situation at all, because I am biased.
And, with all due respect again, I think it is not fair towards those, who put in many hours of work, to not care about what they have to say. It’s not fair or respectful, to say you know about Chris Rosebrough and what he does with his ministry and you know that if you wanted to know anything about these people who have the reputation of being false prophets or false teachers, you could probably find it from his website. And if you didn’t have the time for that, you could just trust his judgement, because he is a faithful minister who serves one church and preaches the Bible. And if somebody were to ask you about somebody like that, you could say: I don’t know. Not my area of expertise. Ask Chris. Or ask Justin. They are experts on these things. They tell you to stay clear of somebody, do it. But asking a man who is a personal friend to those of whom the allegations are made is not helpful, because that friendship creates a bias.
I’d like to review a couple of things that were said on the Dividing Line between yourself and dr. Brown.
17:14 ~ 22:30
I’ve read that article and I have also read the article that was written to refute that. Are you saying they have no point there at all? They say Jim Bakker passes the doctrinal orthodoxy test. All of these people, these Sid Roths, Jonathan Cahns, Bill Johnsons and Jennifer LeClaires of the world. If you go with them through the list and ask them: do you believe this? They say: yes. But that doesn’t work, does it? It’s as if learning maths in elementary school went like: does 5 + 5 equal 10? Yes. Does 10 + 2 equal thirteen? No. These people aren’t being asked the tough questions. What do you believe about the two natures of Christ? Let them explain. That’s where the true test lies. But nobody asks them like that. Trusting the doctrinal statements on their websites is naive. What they really believe they explain in their sermons. And their sermons are not thought through, carefully prepared or biblical. Hardly sermons at all. But to know that you would have to listen. And where someone like Chris Rosebrough does a huge service, is that you don’t have to listen alone. But if you don’t have time, you should not take a side at all.
But. Even if they did pass the orthodoxy test, is that all? Does that really suffice? Haven’t you yourself said, that in heaven we shall be surprised of who is not there? How they put up such a good show that they fooled us all? One passage of scripture I’m surprised to not hear anyone use is 1. corinthians 5 verse 11:
But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. That’s the ESV, this is the NASB:
But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler– not even to eat with such a one.
Many call themselves christians and have their basic theology within the parameters of orthodoxy. Even if Benny Hinn had corrected all his previous doctrinal errors and now checks out according to the checklist, what is this, what is called questionable fundraising by dr. Brown? Is that greed? Isn’t that what swindlers do? How about Jonathan Cahn who sells book after book full of lies, stupid theories, bad doctrine and fear mongering end times speculation? How about Jim Bakker, who sells survival stuff? How about Brannon Howse who does the same? The world is going to end, buy my stuff, and survive! I sense a market opening here. It’s immoral to let idiots keep their money. How about Jennifer LeClaire, who now runs a prophetic school? Shouldn’t even be a teacher, yer charges money for patently unbiblical teaching? The late C. Peter Wagner, who sold apostleship titles? I’m not making these things up. The whole christian book industry? Rotten to the core, enslaved to greed! Money talks!
What about the position they occupy in the body? These people do not fulfill the requirements of first timothy three.
An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not addicted to wine [c]or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money. 4 He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity 5 (but if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?), 6 and not a new convert, so that he will not become conceited and fall into the condemnation [d]incurred by the devil. 7 And he must have a good reputation with those outside the church, so that he will not fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
I myself have not yet come to a definitive conclusion about what to do with such a person pertaining to whether they are truly saved or not. I’m talking about a person who occupies such a position but clearly isn’t qualified. Is there ever grounds for that? Perhaps where this passage and first corinthians five verse eleven intersect? But wouldn’t it at least be obvious that Jennifer LeClaire, for instance, should not occupy the position she does? Why then is she provided a platform according to her position? Random housewife taking care of her kids, welcome on the line fire? Or great prophetess of our time, mouthpiece of the lord, welcome on the line of fire? Which one is it? The latter, of course. God hasn’t spoken to her. She isn’t a prophetic voice. She lies. Dr. White, you’ve written a book, pulpit crimes. I haven’t bought the book yet, so I haven’t read it, but I did watch at least some of the conference lectures. There’s no need to read the book to get the gist of what the book is about. The chapter titles a very revealing:
Prostitution: Using the Gospel for Financial Gain
Cowardice Under Fire
Entertainment Without a License
Dr. White, these people you are letting dr. Brown speak for and defend on your show, are pulpit criminals according to your own standards. They are not as bad as they say, he says. Listen to me, I know because they are my friends. I can’t trust that! What do you do with pulpit criminals, dr. White?
I don’t need to personally know these people! This is such a classic argument. None of you probably know who David Herzog is. Chris Rosebrough does. Sid Roth does. He is basically a new age with christianity mixing synchretist. What would you expect, he’s from sedona anyway. He has written a book called the Glory invasion, where he teaches, for instance, that God’s glory is a substance and it has a weight, and that in creation God used his Glory sort of like an ingredient. He teaches that man can reach a level of glory where it is possible to walk through walls and so on. He teaches that there are secret portals in the world where God’s glory is manifested for than anywhere else, such as certain specific places mentioned in the Bible. Some apologist in my country, his name Pasi Turunen, made the point, for instance, that Herzog’s view of the creation breaks the trinity. Another well known preacher, Leo Meller, called him a brother none the less. These two gentlemen, Turunen and Meller, work in the same ministry together. When Herzog was invited to Finland for the second or third time, he was asked questions about his orthodoxy, because people were worried, and was given a clean slate. Why? Because people got to know him better and he eased their minds; don’t worry, I’m totally orthodox. He’s not orthodox! He’s not a brother! I have what he teaches in his books and what he preaches in those train wrecks people call ”sermons”! I have his false prophesies! I don’t need to get to know him! And he is in no way different or more extreme than a Bill Johnson. Bill Johnson is more dangerous than a David Herzog, because David Herzog is an insignificant nobody compared to him! Way to talk about a leader in the body. It’s true! He is not a leader to me!
Why do I rather read stuff by Calvinists? Why do I rather not read stuff by charismatics? Because if the stuff charismatics write, although not directly about charismaticism, has some basis in charismatic theology, that’s not helpful to me. Dr. White, you have said many times that people say to you: I like what you do with Islam, but I don’t agree with this Calvinism stuff. And your answer is: huh? Reformed theology is the basis for everything I do, including islam! If, on the other hand, the basis for the rest of ones ministry is Charismatic theology and that dictates what they do and how they do it, that’s not helpful to me. Hey, christian people here participate in homosexuality debates on tv and, because of their bad semi-pelagian soteriology, they make it sound like: ”if only you were not gay, you’d be okay”. Well meaning christians! No reason to think they’re not brothers! But I can’t recommend them for anyone, because their foundation is bad and therefore their conclusions are bad. Theology matters! Who said that?
I agree with what was said here about representing others correctly. But here it is again: Bill Johnson is not a careful teacher of the Word of God. He is a pulpit criminal. For the very least he should not be a pastor. Listen to the podcast Chris Rosebrough did With Phil Johnson. They listened to Bill Johnson’s sermon and commented on it together. One comment they made, I think it was Phil Johnson, who said that he sounds as if he just makes it up as he goes. He just rambles. He just flows in a stream of consciousness. He is a pulpit criminal. He is in disobedience to scripture, he isn’t doing what a pastor is supposed to do. Forget the NAR! Forget this alleged kenosis teaching! Where are the people, who say: Bill Johnson, you are in disobedience to scripture, for seeking to occupy a biblical office you clearly are not qualified to occupy, you are not supposed to be a pastor, you are not welcome on my program? Where?
By the way, we’ve had our own share of this kenosis stuff here, because Patrick Tiainen, someone I told you about in the previous video I did, taught the same. He aped word for word this very teaching from Bill Johnson. That didn’t go unnoticed. A pentecostal evangelist did a series of refutation videos of him. These aren’t baseless accusations. My opinion of this is that this is not a direct downplaying of the nature of christ, but rather an indirect one, by elevating man. See, the reasoning here is, that Jesus did all his miracles only by the power of the holy spirit, and never made use, so to speak, of his own divinity, as if had the holy spirit not been with him, he could not have done anything. He would have been so devoid of divinity. But the real trick here is the implication and it has nothing to do with Christ’s nature, but rather ours. According to this teaching Jesus did his miracles as an example to us, an example he calls us to repeat. That way we, if we think right or are spiritual enough or have enough faith or enough of the holy spirit, because holy spirit apparently can be measured by the liter or gallon, as you do there in america with your incoherent measure units, then we can raise to the level where we can do the same things he did and even greater things. That’s what the bible says, right? Too bad that undermines the uniqueness of Christ and elevates man to His level. That’s basically the word of faith little gods doctrine repackaged. That is not a good thing. The ”anonymous discernment bloggers” do a bad job here, because they fail to explain where such a statement leads. They know it too well and assume everyone just gets it. When they do a summarization, they don’t take into account how much other stuff there is to read, to really get a grasp of what is being said.
This Jesus being an example for us, by the way, reminds me of pelagianism. Funny, how semi-pelagian soteriology plays so well with this kind of teaching.
Yeah. I’ve read stuff on churchwatchcentral and even commented to an article. It’s title is Dealing with Dr Michael Brown’s lies (Part 1): Answering Rosebrough’s first question. In my comment in that article I don’t really say much that I didn’t also say in the previous video I made. I still think this is not the way to go. The premise here is that the NAR came and polluted pentecostalism. To save the face of pentecostalism, it needs to be clearly and cleanly separated from the charismatic movement, the vineyard movement, the toronto blessing and the NAR. But that’s not possible! These movements bleed into each other and mix! Any separation you try to do is not going to be nice and clean, but ugly and jagged! Pentecostalism provides the platform to all these other movements and pentecostalism is bad! There’s no reason to specifically go after the NAR and try to find hints that give away supposed moles who try to infiltrate the poor, good and innocent pentecostalism. That makes me suspicious. Are these people, who run church watch central, are they pentecostals? That could explain it. They want to hold on to pentecostalism. They want pentecostalism to be the good and sound form of charismaticism. That’s what ruins their arguments. This is overreaction based on a false premise.
Dealing with Dr Michael Brown’s lies (Part 1): Answering Rosebrough’s first question
I agree that this is not something that places one outside of orthodoxy. However, I can but wonder, why is this logic only applied to healing? Jesus paid for out sins, bore our sickness and defeated death. Yet we sin, we get sick, and eventually we die. If those benefits are in some measure for this life, why don’t some of us every now and while live a sinless day? Do some of us every now and then experience some kind of an age reversal, because death is defeated and we reap some of that benefit in this life already? Or do some of us just not die at all? Doesn’t work for me.
47:41 – 49:55
There are people who do know. Ask them! Read their stuff! Listen to their podcasts! If you don’t have time for it, you should not be talking about this!
Psalm one, verse one:
How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! Or mockers.
For whose sake? Yours? So it would look like you are holier than thou? Or for their sake? So that they would recognize, that there’s somebody who does not want to have fellowship or do ministry with me, and that would cause them to examine themselves? Dr. White, would you speak in the same conference with Kenneth Copeland? How about somebody, who says Kenneth Copeland is his mentor and Spiritual Father, Todd White? Based on that, what confidence would you have in the soundness of Todd White’s ministry? Would you minister alongside with him? Or would you tell people to stay away from him? See, this guilt-by-association objection is the easy way out. The bible does have rules of association. We just haven’t thought about how we apply those rules, as globalization progresses. How far can the chain of association extend? I want nothing to do with Kenneth Copeland. I want nothing to do with a man, who says Kenneth Copeland is his spiritual father. Am I being unreasonable? How deep do I have to dig? Okay, Todd White does street healings, hears from the lord, has stated how amazed he is, that heaven saw so much value in him to go bankrupt. I want none of that. I don’t need to get to know him. Shoo! Away with you, Todd White! I don’t want your crap! God hasn’t spoken to you! You haven’t healed anybody! God didn’t save me because of me but because of Himself! All lies! And I really need to get to know him?
I sort of get this. Think Tullian Tchividjian. He disqualified himself. And he was a presbyterian right? A calvinist, I assume? He probably was featured in many reformed podcasts and such. I know Chris Rosebrough featured him at least in some way within his ministry. Is that endorsement? Not necessarily. He stood by his side, though, when he wrecked his life. But not indefinitely and here’s where my understanding ends. When it surfaced that he was unrepentent and what he did he did on purpose, Chris Rosebrough did the right thing and officially cut ties with him, issued a statement and all the rest. Was that the correct course of action? These people are documented and unrepentant false teachers. They are not supposed to lead ministries or be pastors. There are ministries who keep track of these types of things, because of the charismatic movement’s utter inability to self-regulate.
It’s so sad to listen to something like this. This has been covered in the Strange Fire conference. When charismatics are being accused en masse, they cry why do you paint us with a broad brush! And when you ask them how many of you are there, they say 500 million! If checking a right amount of doctrinal checkboxes in a quiz makes one a christian, then 90% of world’s pentecostals, according to studies, aren’t saved! They believe God gives prosperity to those who have enough faith. That’s the health n wealth heresy. They’ve come to Jesus for the wrong reason! They are not looking for salvation but for the benefits of salvation. These aren’t new questions! They have already been explored, in the conference and in the book! Dr. MacArthur himself said, that his great fear and concern is that most of these people aren’t saved. He didn’t say that with malice, but with pastoral concern! Who gets upset with that? Dr. Brown does! The 500 million is a bubble and he doesn’t like it when somebody bursts it. Is the truth supposed to be pleasant? I have the same concern about my pentecostal home church. Pentecostals in the n’th generation. Housewives who post duckface selfies on facebook. Bible school, that has an entry fee, for those who want ”deeper theological teaching”. Bibles opened in the service? Nope. Pastors who claim to have a mystical calling to ministry, but don’t feed the sheep? Yep. Empty seats in youth meetings? Many, because the youngsters run around the town, in better parties, because the church, even though it tries, can’t compete with what the world has to offer. Nominal pentecostalism and liberal values creeping in more and more each year? You betcha!
Doesn’t prove what he believes. That’s a straw man. It is about lending credibility and affirming false teachers as people that are okay. They are not okay. I’m not talking about discerning whether or not they are saved. But at the very least, they are people nobody should be listening to, because they are bad for you.
Yes! Is that really unreasonable?
No malice, no bad blood, no anger, no hate, okay? Nothing but love and respect for dr. Brown. But if I can’t be sure that his charismatic theology doesn’t influence his views on something else, I can not recommend him as a resource on that something else. I believe charismaticism is bad. I think associating with these people is very bad. But I’m not ready to call dr. Brown a non-brother on that. We keep playing, but in different bands.
Great! Thus we categorically reject Jennifer LeClaire’s sneaky squid spirit and herself and her ministry. Done! We categorically reject David Wilkerson’s book, the Vision, and himself as a prophet of God. Done! We categorically reject Jonathan Cahn and his silly books that claim to reveal prophetic mysteries of the future and the end times. We categorically reject the teary eyed ladies, who prophecy oooh my child ooooh my child, I would do so much in your life if you’d only let meeeeee. Cmon, you all have those in your pentecostal churches. What else? I’m not going to make an extensive list of what to categorically reject, because I think you got the point. We categorically reject. Awesome! We cessationist now.
Wait what? Nonononononono, I thought we were supposed to categorically reject all that! God revealed x, y or z to you? I’m not going to subject that to anything. I’m going to reject that! If somebody tells me, God told them I’ve been mean to somebody at work, I’m not going to give that any credibility. Okay, I work as a private enterpreneur and I’m the only employee of my company, but even in that scenario a confrontation with the Word of God is the way to go. Even if it does square with scripture, I’m going to reject it anyway, because you didn’t honor the Word of God enough to trust that it alone has the power to convict me, as a means used by the Holy Spirit, but felt the need to add yourself as an extra authority upon the Word of God. I will not trust your judgement or your motives. You are seeking to lord over me! Shoo! Away!
Wait a second here. I know how to use Google. Let’s do a search. Who has called Michael Brown a leading apostle of the NAR? I found six search results. Three of them name C. Peter Wagner as the leading apostle. One calls Rick Joyner the leading apostle. And two are mirrors of the same article, written by these critics of yours, where they say nobody has ever said that. Dr. White, is this a misrepresentation? Is this being fair and truthful, even about your enemies? I understand that in the heat of the moment people can misspeak. Wouldn’t it be a good time to slow down now, let off some steam and perhaps continue this on the phone with JD et al? I thought you were friends! What I don’t like about this situation is that you claim you are fair and they are not, when in reality nobody is fair. They are not fair to you and you respond in kind. This has to just stop.
Haven’t read the book, but I did read the description. There’s a lot of information around on the NAR and it being bound into a book doesn’t really translate into value for me. I mostly listen anyway, because I can listen while I work, and when I have time to read, I try to read the Bible. I have a problem with what the authors say in the description:
We wish to warn readers about a possible confusion: Some critics have linked the NAR movement with mainstream Pentecostalism and charismatics. We do not do this. In fact, it is our contention that the NAR movement deviates from classical Pentecostal and charismatic teachings. This movement has emerged out of independent charismatic churches and, thus, has gained a foothold in many of those churches in varying degrees.
This is what creates the problem. This statement is what creates what is being accused of as being yellow journalism and conspiracy theories. I think that’s correct: that’s what they are. This movement has emerged out of independent charismatic churches. Not true. It’s roots are in the latter rain movement and the latter rain movement started in pentecostalism. It is also not true because even if it did just pop up out of independent charismatic churches, where did those come from then? From pentecostalism. I think Peter Wagner was absolutely right when he spoke of waves. The charismatic error manifests itself in waves that wash further and further every time. According to Amy Spreeman the NAR is ”also known as Dominionism, Third Wave, Latter Rain, Kingdom Now, Joel’s Army, Manifest Sons of God, Charismatic Renewal, Charismania”. I don’t know if all those synonyms are helpful, because I am under the impression that the brand of dominionism that the folks at american vision teach is different to this NAR type. But there you have it, the latter rain. The abbreviation NOLR stands for New Order of the Latter Rain. So, anyone tells you NAR has nothing to do with pentecostalism and even uses NAR slash NOLR, as quoted from churchwatchcentral, they are, in my opinion, confused.
According to gotquestions.org: The term “latter rain” was first used early in the history of Pentecostalism, when David Wesley Myland wrote a book called Latter Rain Songs in 1907. Three years later, Myland wrote The Latter Rain Covenant, a defense of Pentecostalism in general. So the early pentecostals already used Joel 2:23 to justify themselves. Bill Johnson says he is a fith generation pastor. Bethel Church was part of the Assemblies of God, when Bill Johnson’s father was the pastor. He has a pentecostal background! Pentecostals keep sliding by the slippery slope towards NAR, because that’s where the road leads! And who knows where it leads after that. We are doing a disservice to our pentecostal brothers, if we let them think that they are okay, it’s this boogey man that’s the problem. We’ve gotten used to you and you concern us no longer. No. Pentecostalism created the boogey man. Pentecostalism provides the platform for it and creates the theological environment where it can exist. Deduct pentecostalism; bye bye NAR. And now that NAR people say they aren’t even part of it, I’d say okay. Back to critiquing pentecostalism then. That’s more helpful. Back to critiquing their individual teachings. Like minded people networking together is not a sin and makes nobody heretical. The NAR is like Nirvana. The band broke up when Kurt Cobain died. And then they just each went their separate ways.
If you just get somebody convinced that the baptism by the holy spirit is not a second blessing type separate holiness or power experience, but that baptism by which christ baptizes his people into himself, you have won them from pentecostalism, the NAR, Toronto, Vineyeard, latter rain, any of them. Debunking pentecostalism is the cake, the rest is just icing. And the cake is a lie.
Whoa, wait a second here. I’ve heard this before. See, I know a thing or two about this, because not only have I been a member of a pentecostal church for the last, what, thirteen years? Before that I was a devoted visitor, not a member, of a church that came straight outta Toronto! I was not a member, not because I saw something fishy with that church, but because I was in rebellion! I didn’t want to be a member. I didn’t even have a valid reason, I hardly has any reason at all. I just didn’t wanna, period. But this is not the normative charismatic experience. Not in pentecostalism and not in the Toronto movement. See, most of the time it is professing believers who go to the front of the stage after a church service to receive what is called prayer service. It’s what you see in the Rodney howard-browne videos. Where he yells fire and they fall limp on the ground. That has nothing to do with being born again, at least not normatively. In my pentecostal corner here people hardly fall over anymore, but they receive prayer service anyway. And the prayer service is pretty much always associated with a visiting preacher, a rain man, a witch doctor, as Conrad M’bewe said at Strange Fire. People don’t go to the front because they want to become christians. They go there, because they want a special anointing, a special touch, a special touch, from the rain man. The rain man supposedly brings God to them in a way their ordinary pastor can’t. And they play sappy background music and beckon people to come saying: ”do you feel dry in your spirit? do you need a fresh anointing in your life? Come forward, we pray for you. Pastor so and so has promised to not leave this evening until he or someone in his team has praid for everyone in this building, if need be. Come forward, come meet with the lord.” And then people go home having learned nothing, and having been fed nothing. In the next weeks church service the pastor revisits how awesome the precense of god was and how many gave their lives to Jesus. And when time comes for the next rain man event, the same people are in the front again receiving prayer service. Rinse and repeat. Dr. Brown is giving a misleading picture of regular pentecostal slash charismatic church life.
I’ve heard pentecostals do this before. One pastor, the leader of the finnish pentecostal church, did this in a radio debate against an ex-pentecostal atheist and another pastor did this in an article in the pentecostal newspaper. When pentecostals defend speaking in tongues, they say something like: I heard my mother speak in very old swedish one time, or: I heard about an old romani man, who got really convicted when suddenly somebody spoke in an old romani language, that only he knew. Great, good for you, I didn’t ask you about the one in a million legendary tale of somebody speaking an ordinary language, I asked you about the gibberish you people speak every day. That’s the normative thing. Defend that, please!
Grave sucking… yeah. You mean they quickly brushed it under the rug and pretended like nothing happened, because they saw the ruckus it created. These people are grave sucking! Guys, we should stop that. People are calling us heretics. Well, that’s something, isn’t it. At least they are not doing that anymore? Guess the first one Bill Johnson disciplined on that was his wife. They did do that though, in all seriousness. But again, just not doing it anymore, is that really repentance? No we dont do that kind of a thing here. How about: yes, we used to do. That was sinful. We don’t do that anymore.
It’s possible. Hey, anything is possible. But its the same thing with these people falling over and so on. Not in the bible! I don’t want that! I want nothing to do with that. As far as I am concerned, if it isn’t in the bible, it doesn’t belong in christianity. Jesus didn’t fall over and never made anybody fall over and neither did the apostles. There were never any oil, gemstone, gold dust, gold filling, or angel feather manifestations in the ministry of christ or the apostles. I don’t want any of that. The catholics claim manifestations of the stigmata. There’s pictures of those, on the internet! Far better evidence than stories, right? Except that those are of course bogus too and most of the pictures seem to have the nail piercings through the palm, which is not strong enough to support body weight on the cross, so they nailed crusifixion victims through the wrists. These are all lies. Dr. Brown has not watched the strange fire conference and neither has dr. White, because the glory cloud came up in a discussion panel session there. They played the video, which anyone can find with a simple youtube search. What was dr. MacArthur’s assessment? If this really was the glory of God, these people would be dead.
Sigh. You saw something noone else did. That’s not helpful.]
And I have no problem with that whatsoever. Even if you were, it doesn’t necessitate that you hold to the same doctrines they do. Or did. ]
Yeah. I reject that. That’s a false narrative and I suspect it stems from a desire to protect good ol’ pentecostalism from any further aberrations. That’s a fool’s errand. Big name pentecostal leaders are undoing every effort in that.]
I’m sorry, but to me this undermines scripture again. The bible is always relevant. It always has something to say. In the old testament God sent prophets to speak what he gave them to speak. He didn’t send them to draw conclusions or make observations of their surrounding society or culture and then supernaturally work some prophetic magic into their words that were invoked by what they saw. He gave them his words: say this, nothing else. We, christians, are all prophets in a certain sense. God has given us His sure word of prophesy. It’s this. The Bible. He has given us His words: say this. Nothing more. When you preach the bible you can’t not be prophetic. And it has nothing to do with predicting the future or soothsaying, like miraculously knowing stuff about somebody else’s life. These Jennifer LeClaires and Bill Johnsons and the like are not prophetic voices, even though they claim to be, because they butcher the Bible. They are pulpit criminals. If Al Mohler is prophetic, he is prophetic because he sticks only to what the Bible says and lets it speak.
Laatter raiiiin, Laatter rainnnnn, part of pentecostalism from the very beginning.
Again, this flies in the face of categorically rejecting all that is not theopneustos. If God speaks and it is theopneustos, it’s binding and it’s scripture. If it isn’t, it’s worthless!
I don’t think it’s really helpful for me to continue any further. Now it’s just me countering stuff dr. Brown says, as if dr. White didn’t have differences with him in these areas. In my opinion dr. Brown is your average regular pentecostal guy. I believe dr. Brown is a brother who has all the same issues as any pentecostal. Pentecostalism is the cake and the cake is a lie. Why people keep eating it, beats me. I don’t agree with what some people say in the reformed camp, that eventually, sooner or later, God is going to gather His sheep and lead them out of the bad churches and into sound churches. I can’t find that in the bible and the logical conclusion of that is basically: you die a pentecostal, off to hell you go. Unless it’s a sound pentecostal church. Those are rare, I believe. Sadly, mine isn’t. There are many old people there, passing away one by one, and that’s all they’ve known their entire life, pentecostalism, and their only alternative has ever been the corrupt and liberal lutheran state church. That’s still the best place for them to be, I think, their pentecostal home church. I don’t see into their hearts. They profess faith, they say they love the Lord, for some reason the Lord hasn’t given them the grace of membership in a real solid bible preaching church. Still it does not necessarily mean they’re not saved.
[About spiritual fathering:
Where is this in the Bible? Aren’t we supposed to be brothers? “But do not be called Rabbi; for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers. “Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. “Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ. “But the greatest among you shall be your servant. “Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted. Dr. Brown, I’m not following your lead. I don’t wanna go there.]
Just a couple last things:
Like me 🙂
Maybe that’s true, dr. White. Maybe they are not listening. But are you? Is dr. Brown listening? Seems to me nobody is listening. That’s just how it is. Dr. White, your own scope is narrow. It’s narrow out of necessity, because you can’t be a jack of all trades and master of everything, can you? What I see is a bunch of apologists, who all have their own field of expertise, but who don’t appreciate each others work. Why can’t you people be humble enough to learn from each other and exchange information?
Dr. White, if you are willing to listen to mormons, how much more should you be willing to listen to brothers? If you don’t like the way JD Hall does what he does, okay, but he isn’t the only one.
Dr. White, this is an unfair and unnecessary requirement.
Dr. White, the internet is what made you. Does the internet strip away your credibility as well? Where are the equal scales?
Sure, but doesn’t God providentially send people in our lives, who minister to us? I thought divorcing Gods work in our lives from the people he uses as means would be hyperism. As reformed, we believe God uses all people, right? The potter has the right to use some for honorable and some for dishonorable use. We oppose hyper-calvinism, which, according to my understanding, bypasses all human activity and disregards all human action in Gods saving work; that God doesn’t use people as means to carry to the elect the Gospel that saves, but that people just plingggg, get saved out of thin air. Imagine that there’s a person who God wants to save, who needs to hear just what you have to say, and God sends you! He ordains you to be the beautiful feet on the mountains that bring the good news. Oh the joy and privilege of working for God. He’s the best boss ever. I get to work for him. Then imagine the opposite: God wants to harden somebody. He doesn’t want to save them. He knows that if he sent someone to screech at them, like the street screechers, they will harden their heart and will never want to hear about Jesus again. And God sends you. And you go. And you do your thing. Do you expect Him to thank you for that, on the last day? That’s a frightening thought and I don’t want that to apply to me.
But doesn’t this apply to false teaching as well? God in his grace sends people to speak into our lives who can correct us in our false understanding of Him. And God in his wrath sends people to teach falsehoods so that people would believe their lies and be damned. Are we supposed to just say: God’s judgement. They get what they deserve. Or are we supposed to stand up against false teaching because it’s right? And because God does use us to free people from the bondage of false doctrine? God uses people in our lives to build our character, too, right? What does God do when you ask Him to grow you in patience? Does he just plinnngggg make you more patient, by his spirit? He sends people in your life to test your patience and when your patience is tested, the Holy Spirit reveals to you through scripture how impatient you are, which causes you to humble yourself and repent, and grow in patience.
One absolutely final thing. Dr. White, you say you don’t want a food fight. But you’ve got one right here and you are participating in it. JD Hall, dr. White, please, stop. The both of you. Neither of you are totally right and neither of you are entirely fair towards each other. There’s no winner here.
Peace to you, in Jesus’s name. Thank you, bye bye.