European-American Evangelistic Crusades, Inc.
February 2000 Newsletter
John S. Torell
The Holy Spirit is directing me to write on a very different subject in this month’s newsletter. Some people reading this may be shocked and some might even become angry with me. My prayer is that you will set aside your emotions and all humanistic thinking, and scrutinize every word that I write and carefully check out all of the Bible references that I share with you.
REVELATIONS, VISIONS AND
Before we go any further, let us define some terms. The term "PENTECOSTALS" refers to believers in Christ who have been born again (saved) and also baptized in the Holy Spirit (John 7:37-39; Acts 1:4-8; 2:1-4). This term became generally used after the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in 1906 at the Azusa street revival in Los Angeles. The adherents to this movement are referred to as "CLASSICAL PENTECOSTALS."
The term "CHARISMATIC" came into usage in the 1950's when believers in Christ were baptized in the Holy Spirit outside regular Pentecostal churches. This Pentecostal message was preached by healing evangelists like William Branham, Oral Roberts, Gordon Lindsay and T.L. Osborn. The movement really took off with the formation in 1951 of the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International under the leadership of Demos Shakarian. By 1965 the message had spread to thousands of Roman Catholics in the United States, and since the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church could not stop it, they embraced it and eventually hi-jacked the entire Charismatic movement. Kathryn Kuhlman became obsessed with the sight of Roman Catholic priests attending her meetings and just a few years before her death she was invited to Rome and had a personal audience with the Pope. The same thing happened to the Full Gospel Business Men. Their ranks were swelled by Catholics who then moved up into leadership positions. The teaching of doctrine changed and it was no longer necessary to be born again. People were prayed over, regardless if they were saved or not, just to be baptized in the Holy Spirit and many of them showed manifestations, like speaking in tongues. As the CHARISMATIC MOVEMENT spread into Canada, Europe, Australia and all other areas of the world, Protestants, Episcopalians and Roman Catholics were mixed into one great "hodge-podge" In the late 1970's the movement had become mixed with the ECUMENICAL MOVEMENT and it was no longer a spiritual movement, but also a political movement set out to change the ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE.
THE DESTRUCTION OF SOUND
Since most Christians today are hungry for more of God, they look for signs, miracles and revivals, which sounds great. People are craving to know what God is doing today, and they are flocking to preachers, evangelists and others who claim to be prophets or have had visions. What most Christians do not understand is, that the statement quoted above is not only wrong, it is diabolic and its author is no one less than the Devil himself.
This should not come as a surprise or a shock, the Bible tells us that the Devil is very religious and in the business of religion:
Why is the statement wrong? Look at the following Bible verses and let them speak to you.
WHERE DID ALL
FALSE RELIGIONS COME FROM
The Old Testament is full of warnings from God, where He forbids people to contact the spirit world in an attempt to gain knowledge or power. (Deuteronomy 18:9-13) When King Saul became desperate, he cried out for a witch who could get him in contact with the spirit world.
Instead of a demon coming up on the earth, God sent back Samuel from the dead with the message that king Saul was finished on the earth and that the next day he would be killed along with his son. (I Samuel 28:11-19)
The Roman Catholic Church embraced a number of writings, known as the "Apocrypha," which have given support to much of the tradition in Catholic doctrine. Jesus did not embrace the extra biblical books which the Jews had in addition to the Old Testament, and the early apostolic church followed suit in rejecting not only the Old Testament apocrypha, but also a number of books which people at that time claimed had been written by the apostles or their disciples. But when the Roman Catholic church was formed some 300 years after Christ, it accepted a number of written material both from the period before and after Christ. When the reformation began in the 15th century, both Martin Luther and later John Calvin rejected these extra non-biblical writings.
Mohammed in the 7th century A.D. was not satisfied with the Bible, instead he sought further insight from the spirit world and had an encounter with an "ANGEL OF LIGHT," who taught him some new doctrine, spawning a new book called "The Koran."
In order to create credibility for his own writing, Mohammed stated that the Bible was not correctly translated and had been corrupted, but that he could be trusted with new revelations from God. Today some one billion people on this planet follow this man and his book, which will lead them to hell and later to the Lake of Fire.
Joseph Smith was an American living in the state of New York. As a young person he had developed psychic power and was known as a man with the power to "divine." (Finding hidden objects in the ground). At this time there was a mighty move of God and many Christian churches experienced revivals. But Smith was not happy in the churches, neither was he satisfied with what he had learned as a member of the Freemasons. In 1827 he had an encounter with "AN ANGEL OF LIGHT," who directed him to some hidden gold plates, which contained the history of the American Indians and their origin. The result was the Book of Mormon, plus some additional books, and the MORMON RELIGION was born. Just like Mohammed had done, in order to validate his own work, Smith had to destroy the credibility of the Bible by using the same old line, that it was not properly translated and that he, Joseph Smith, had been chosen by God to restore the truth. Today some 9.7 million people are members of the Brigham Young Mormon Church of Salt Lake City and some 200,000 members make up the Reorganized LDS church. These two branches of the Mormon church are bitterly opposing each other, each claiming to be the true church. The truth is that both are wrong and are leading people to hell and later to the Lake of Fire.
In the 19th century several false religions were born, each from people claiming to have revelations superceding the Bible. Charles Taze Russell formed the Jehovah’s Witnesses in 1872 and the same old line was used, the Bible was not correctly translated so the sect produced its own version.
A new comer to the false religious leaders is the Korean born Sun Myung Moon, who founded his new religion called "The Unification Church" in 1954. Moon has taken an extra step by declaring himself to be the Messiah. Of course the Bible is rejected in this movement.
The list is too long to write out in this newsletter, but I believe that the reader by now is picking up the truth, EVERY NEW FALSE RELIGION HAS TO DISCREDIT THE BIBLE BEFORE THEY CAN ESTABLISH THEIR OWN WRITINGS.
THE HIDDEN DANGER OF
FALSE VISIONS AND PROPHECIES
When Kenneth Hagin was confronted by Bible teachers and pastors that some of his teaching could not be found in the Bible, he stated "THAT CURRENT REVELATIONS FROM GOD SUPERCEDE THE BIBLE." By believing this and teaching this doctrine at the Rhema Bible Training Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma he has joined false prophets like Mohammed, Smith and others, who have declared their own visions superior to the Bible.
By 1988 some 10,000 students had graduated from his center, spawning what is currently known as the "Faith Movement." Some of the most prominent students are Kenneth Copeland, K.C. Price and Ulf Ekman (Sweden).
In 1978 Hagin spoke out a number of negative prophecies that never came to pass. Paul Crouch, founder and president of Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), when he has Kenneth Copeland on as a guest, often refers to Kenneth Hagin as "daddy Hagin." The teaching of Hagin and his view of current revelations superceding the Bible is often repeated by Crouch, Copeland and Benny Hinn. In a TBN broadcast some time ago, Paul Crouch and Benny Hinn spoke powerfully that "DOCTRINE WAS NOT IMPORTANT" and that people who insisted on biblical truth were going to hell.
TBN is the biggest television ministry of the Christian community in the world today, but this network often teaches contrary to the Bible and then explains that these are new revelations. Christians flock to it by the millions and give their money to keep it going. The network gives them what most of them do not see in their home churches, spectacular physical healings and super charged meetings where people are thrown to the floor in great manifestations, flopping on the floor like fish laying on dry ground and struggling to get back into the water.
"BUT THEY ARE
WINNING SOULS FOR CHRIST BY THE MILLIONS"
Let us now slow down and look at the entire situation without getting our emotions involved. Some time ago Benny Hinn stated on a TV program that the Catholics love Jesus. I agree with that statement. Most Catholics do love Jesus. But loving Jesus does not bring salvation to a person. Muslims love Jesus too. The Koran speaks highly about Jesus. But salvation is more than just to say that I love Jesus. There must be a conversion, a person must be born again, and this only takes place when a person is convicted by the Holy Spirit of his sins, is willing to repent and believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins, and that through His death and resurrection we can be saved. We must receive Christ as Lord and Saviour. The Muslims love Jesus but are trusting that Mohammed is going to lead them to heaven. The Catholics love Jesus, but are taught continually, that salvation is of the church and through its sacraments. And if they want to reach Jesus, they have to go through Mary, his mother. Thus all these people who love Jesus are on the road to hell. Let us listen to what Jesus said on this matter:
kingdom of heaven: but he that does the will of my Father, which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? And in your name have cast out devils? And in your name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity. Matthew 7:21-23
What is the will of the Father? For men to be born again! (John 3:1-21)
The apostle Paul did not mince words, when he said the following:
THE EROSION OF BIBLICAL
When Jesus was tempted by the Devil as recorded in Matthew 4:1-11, Jesus defeated the Devil by quoting the Word of God – It is written . . . .Satan is very aware that if he is to succeed in snaring men and women, he must first take away the Word of God from them. He has and is using the following methods:
Suddenly, men and women who loved God and were saved, began to have visions, dreams and revelations. Some were told that they were taken to hell, and some to heaven. These people forgot the warning given by the Apostle John:
They emerged as strong soul winners after their experience, preaching and teaching Jesus Christ as the Son of God, and leading people to Christ. But they also introduced false teaching in their presentations. Believers in Christ who knew the Word of God were first taken back, but then decided not to bother with the doctrine, after all, people were getting saved. The Devil had done his home work well. What the Christians do not understand is that the Devil is willing to trade, letting some people become saved in one generation, if he can in return destroy the pure Word of God and reap his harvest in generations to follow.
Let me give you some examples: A woman has written a book about hell. She claims that years ago Jesus came to her and had her go through hell during a number of nights when she was laying in her bed. In her book, she is teaching the doctrine that Satan and his demons are in charge of hell and the torment of the people in it. This is nowhere to be found in the Bible. Jesus taught, in Luke 16:19-31, about hell and the torment that takes place there. But Jesus did not state that the Devil is in charge. Instead, Jesus refers to the Devil as the prince of this world (John 14:30). The apostle Paul refers to Satan as the prince of the power of the air (Ephesians 2:2). The apostle Paul tells us, in Colossians 2:15, that Jesus has spoiled principalities and powers, He made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. And in the book of Revelation, Jesus states that He holds the keys of hell and of death (Revelation 1:18). The apostle Peter tells us that Satan walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (I Peter 5:8-9). Peter is not referring to hell, he is referring to earth and to Christians living on the earth.
The woman further states that hell is shaped in the form of a human body under the surface of the earth. This is not found any place in the Bible. She also claims that in the belly part of hell, there are special cells, stacked 17 miles high, used to house the men and women who were involved in witchcraft when they were alive on the earth. She claims that Jesus told her that these cells once were part of Paradise, but when Jesus took all the people in paradise to heaven, these cells were made part of hell. This in itself is a great contradiction, Paradise, also known as the Bosom of Abraham, was a place of peace and happiness where the Old Testament saints were waiting for Jesus to finish his atonement. It was not a place of torment, it was a place of great happiness. There was never any need for prison cells in Paradise.
The woman also said that in the belly of hell, Satan has a special place called the "Fun Place," shaped like a circus arena, where Satan and the demons are entertaining themselves by tormenting those people who were the most faithful to them on earth. She also describes that demons work in shifts, just like men, indicating that fallen angels get tired and need to rest. None of this teaching can be found in the Bible. A well known evangelist in the Faith Movement describes his trip to heaven, both on a video and in a book. As he meets Jesus in heaven, he discovers that Jesus is very sad and he asks Jesus if He would let him comfort Him. This seems to cheer Jesus up.
What this evangelist is doing is ascribing human emotions to Jesus. When Jesus was on earth, yes indeed, He experienced all things that humans must endure (Hebrews 4:14-15), but now He is ruling in all His majesty as told in Revelation, chapter 1. The evangelist also talks about baby spirits floating around the throne of God, begging to be sent to earth and be born as human beings. This is nowhere to be found in the Bible.
Thus these people claiming to have had these visions and revelations are not openly attacking the Bible. But by bringing in false teaching into the body of Christ, they have the same effect on the body of Christ as rust will have on an automobile. It will slowly eat away until the vehicle has no more integrity, it just falls apart. False teaching will do the same to the Christians.
A STRONG WARNING FROM GOD
And we should take good notice that in the last chapter of the last book of the Bible, Jesus states the following:
You who have read my newsletter must now render a judgment of what you have read. I am pleading with you, that you will not let sentimentality and your fondness of your favorite preacher or evangelist dictate what you believe. The bottom line is this, either you hold the Bible in high esteem and you will stand up for biblical truth, or you will let men’s teachings and revelations overrule and supercede the WORD OF GOD!
Do you have an ear with which to hear? Revelation 2:18-29
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