biblical discernment, Biblical truth, Christian doctrine, Christianity, contemplative mysticism, contemplative spirituality, emergent, Emergent church, emergent theology, false doctrine, global religion, globalization, international politics, Leonard Sweet, Let Us Reason Ministries, Mike Oppenheimer, mysticism, new age, new spirituality, new world order (NWO), oneness spirituality, Rick Warren
A “New” Dark Age – In Politics and in the Church
Hitler used the same tactic when organizing the German church into an arm of the state. Quelling dissent among Christians and using pastors to bring their congregations into line with Third Reich policies actually enabled the Holocaust.
by Mike Oppenheimer
Let Us Reason Ministries
Used with permission.
Christians should be more aware than other people because we have the Word; we are told what will take place in the last days (2 Tim. 3:1), and we are instructed on how to resist it. The majority of people have been dumbed-down and made lazy by our culture. In this void, the government comes to the rescue. The church has the same problem at work; people rely on big church to come to the rescue when they should be doing the work. This is because of our lack of Bible knowledge and lack of being equipped to evangelize and fulfill Jesus’ commission.
A Dark Age has descended upon science, politics, and religion. Despite the advances of technology, we are living in the bleakest period of mankind’s history. It may yet put the Middle Ages to shame. The main difference then was that the Bible was unable to be read and withheld from the masses by the Roman Catholic hierarchy. Today, we have more Bibles than ever before but they are still not read, even inside the church. Worse, the Word is not understood. The Bible is not consulted when a challenge to our faith appears. The predictable result is massive deception.
If you are following the news, it seems everything is unraveling. Those who have been following politics and the news are aware that the US of As administration has been filled by anti-constitutionalists. The prophets prophesied transformation for years, and we now have it; only it’s not exactly what they thought it would be.
If you are wondering what is taking place in America, and trying to pin down the activity, it’s simple to understand. The government is in the hands of 60s radicals that understood that in order to transform the country, they would have to join the “establishment.” Therefore, they forged their plan.
In our Global warming DVD, I quote from The Aquarian Conspiracy, a book by Marilyn Ferguson: “A leaderless but powerful network is working to bring about radical change in the United States. Its members have broken with certain key elements of Western thought…. This network is the Aquarian Conspiracy…. The Aquarian Conspirators are “World changers,” spiritual conspirators for social revolution- they are “schoolteachers – office workers, scientists, government officials – lawmakers -artists – celebrities, leaders in medicine, education, law, psychology…. they are found incorporations, universities, hospitals, faculties of public schools, factories, doctors’ offices, in state and federal agencies, in state legislatures and the White House staff, in virtually all arenas of policy-making in the country.” (pp. 23-25)
New Ager Dick Sutphen, echoing Ferguson’s Aquarian transformation, explains further; “One of the biggest advantages we have as new Agers is, once the occult, metaphysical, and New Age terminology is removed, we have concepts and techniques that are very acceptable to the general public. So we can change the names and demonstrate the power. In so doing, we open the New Age door to millions who normally would not be receptive.” (Sutphen, “Infiltrating the New Age into Society”)
He notes that “the Born-Again Christians are their most vocal antagonists…But our momentum will become so great that the combined efforts of all antagonists can’t stop us unless they do so politically.” He also encourages people to network with family, friends, and associates, to infuse New Age concepts into every area of their personal world, such as the office and the schoolroom.
This is what is taking place. As New Age proponents recommend, change the names and terms, and people will not recognize what they are accepting. Yes, things are being redefined. While I make a correlation in the DVD for this being used to promote the environmental movement, through political and social means, we should not overlook the most important part – which is the spiritual. This can be applied to everything we are seeing today, from the grassroots level to the White House. We have socialists, Marxists, and New Agers who are all working toward the same goal. This transformation is changing our country through environmental issues from the 60s generation, who are now in the universities and in politics. We are under siege by the Aquarian Conspiracy!
And we are feeling it…Fatigue, discouragement, even a feeling of helplessness surface from the continual resistance needed to be kept toward the transformation of the country, and the church is not exempt. We have reached the crescendo — like being in an opera with the high note held.
In 1989, I took a police course on cult mentality and occult offenses where we learned that cults are not limited to religion – there are social cults, music cults, and political cults etc. A cult often has a leader that is not questioned, either because of fear or out of loyalty. He convinces people to follow him willingly, if within his power, or through intimidation. In politics, they are called dictators. In religion, they are called holy men, revelators, prophets, and apostles. They promise freedom but deliver bondage.
The majority of Congress does not read the bills they pass, not because they cannot read but because they do not care for the will of the people they are elected to represent. They think they know better. In the church, we have pastors who do not care to shepherd the flock over which they have charge, and many have become cult-like leaders over the sheep, using coercion and control. There is an assault on both fronts and it is increasing.
America breaks ties with Israel
As the administration practices Chicago politics on a worldwide scale, there is a price to pay on both sides. Mr. Obama was said to be livid when such an announcement derailed the visit to Israel by Vice-President Joe Biden this month, and his anger toward Israel does not appear to have cooled.
Challenging Netanyahu’s leadership, Biden told Israel to stop building on their land, while at the same time he is silent on Iran, which is funding Hamas and Hezbollah, two Muslim terrorist groups fighting American soldiers on the battlefield and threatening Israel with annihilation. How can our long-time allies trust us with such a lack of common sense as a principle for our foreign policy? Our reputation is being stained by such inane actions.
Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle have called on the Obama Administration to defuse tension between Washington and Jerusalem, and to reinforce the U.S.-Israel relationship. Rep. Gary Peters (D-MI) said, “I hope that the Administration will end its unnecessary denunciations of Israel and will instead turn its focus to working with Congress to finally enact strong sanctions on Iran.”
The situation has only worsened. Obama insists on a freeze of Jewish settlement growth on land that Israel owns and has developed since 1993.
According to the New York Times recently, our president declined to have dinner with Netanyahu and instead dined in private. This act was viewed in Jerusalem as a humiliation. “The Prime Minister leaves America disgraced, isolated, and altogether weaker than when he came,” the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz stated.
No new concessions on settlements were produced, Obama walked out of his meeting with Mr. Netanyahu but invited him to stay at the White House, consult with advisers, and “let me know if there is anything new.”
One Israeli newspaper called the meeting “a hazing in stages,” poisoned by such mistrust that the Israeli delegation eventually left rather than risk being monitored on a White House telephone line. Another said that the Prime Minister had received “the treatment reserved for the President of Equatorial Guinea” (The Times, March 26, 2010).
The Palestinian leadership has been corrupt for years, from Arafat on, and to expect anything different from what we have already seen is purposely stupid.
It is becoming apparent that our eschatology (our view of the end times) must include Israel and the Tribulation or nothing in the world will make sense. Replacement Theology and Preterism is void of any reference to the world we live in today, and the end-time Scripture references to the nation of Israel’s return to the land and the subsequent future Tribulation are being solidified each day.
We are watching the fabric of our culture being destroyed from people’s decisions that have no rhyme or reason. The NYC mayor hands out brochures on how to use heroin correctly but wants to control people’s salt intake for health reasons. The Obama administration captures our enemies on the battlefield and gives them US citizen rights and makes what they do a crime instead of treating them as prisoners of war. This clearly is an agenda to change the way we treat Islamic terrorism. It’s hard to find any logic being practiced in our government when it is practicing a new set of laws, legislation separated from its original structure in the Constitution.
Recently a three-judge panel of the appeals court decided in favor to uphold the inscription of the national motto “In God, We Trust” on coins and currency, saying that the phrase is ceremonial and patriotic, not religious. While this is apparently a victory, we need to pause and ask—Is this what America really believes anymore?
While Christmas is being obscured and diminished in schools, we now have a reversal, as the New Jersey Board of Education voted to approve a list of religious holidays for the 2010-2011 school year. The list included eight pagan/Wiccan holidays, or sabbats.
Judeo/ Christian values are being diminished and other religious practices are more accepted in this new age of tolerance.
Church changes continue
No one thought such a radical change could happen here in America, but it did! The church did not believe it would happen, but when false prophets like Rick Joyner, Mike Bickle and others said the church would be transformed, it was.
“What is about to come upon the earth is not just a revival, or another awakening; it is a veritable revolution. The vision was given in order to begin to awaken those who are destined to radically change the course, and even the very definition of Christianity. …A great company of prophets, teachers, pastors and apostles will be raised up with the spirit of Phineas…”( Rick Joyner, The Harvest, “Joel’s Army”) Joyner is now the main promoter of the unashamed Todd Bentley.
“… and they (apostles, prophets) do things that you have no frame of reference for understanding because, believe me, what’s going to be coming down in the next twenty years you and I have no frame of reference for understanding. It is going to be so unusual you are not going to be able to look at the Word for every manifestation and find one there because the Spirit of the Lord has so many manifestations that you and I know nothing about.” (Divine Appointment [Introduction],Mike Bickle, 3/29/89, cassette tape)
We have watched over the years the fires of revival burn up the church’s protection. The church that is supposed to be the pillar and ground of the truth allowed experiential lies inside its walls. From Rodney Browne’s laughing, to Toronto’s shaking, to Todd Bentley’s ascensions to heaven; and the hits keep coming. Put your armor on, as it is only going to escalate. Is the emergent church the next wave?
We have warned of the emerging church movement for over 4 years. This news item is disturbing but needs to be heard. I have enjoyed Skip Heitzig’s teaching over the years. Calvary chapel of Albuquerque announced it is hosting The National Worship Leaders Conference, June 15-17. On their website, it says:
Join with others like you, learn from the experience of influential worship leaders and thinkers, and challenge one another to delve deeper into the art of leading worship. In the process, we will discover a new energy and passion for the ministry of leading the musical prayers of our communities.”
I have a problem with the concept of musical prayers of our communities– what exactly does this mean? When did leading worship become an art? Along with Skip Heitzig and other guest speakers (some which also need to be reviewed) is emerging church leader Leonard Sweet, whom some considered the intelligentsia of the movement.
Leonard Sweet is also Rick Warren’s companion in the emergent movement and is making inroads into churches that were once known to withstand error like this. To have a main Calvary Chapel hosting a worship conference that includes Sweet is to leap off a cliff hoping to fly. As Lighthouse trails ministry notes: Leonard Sweet is sharing platforms with many popular evangelical leaders. We can expect others to do the same.
Warren’s new reformation is no different from the transformation taking place in politics and religion. God is trying to position us for true revival; Satan is maneuvering us to unite with other religions so that Christianity will be changed.
There are those who describe a “new Christianity” emerging. Sweet calls it New Light (reminiscent of Jehovah Witnesses?) Emergent church leader Brian McLaren is wanting to transform the church as well, as he takes apart every known doctrine possible like any loyal liberal would.
Sweet states, “I am grateful to David Spangler for his help in formulating this ‘new cell’ understanding of New Light leadership.”
Sweet writes that he is part of a “New Light movement” and in his book Quantum Spirituality he speaks of “New Light leaders.” Sweet accepts other religions practices to produce his theological basis for new light teaching. Sweet speaks of his book as “In one sense the whole of this book is an extended meditation on the nature of true New Light leadership and on how more of these voices of the third millennium might emanate from America’s churches and synagogues.”(Quantum Spirituality, p. 46)
Sweet believes, “The church must provide Postmoderns with an alterity of rituals by which they can turn and tune to one another and feel connected to the cosmos” (Quantum Spirituality, p. 137).
This is not Christianity as was delivered. He has a fundamental misunderstanding of what the gospel is, as shown in the following quote: “the gospel interconnects and interacts with all life-and landforms.” (p.168). Sweet speaks of Christ consciousness, which is New Age terminology, and calls the church the “cosmic body of Christ” (QS p.164). He uses words and concepts foreign to scripture but not to New Age metaphysics. He favorably quotes New Agers, mystics like Matthew Fox., and Teilhard de Chardin, who believed in “a ‘religion of the future’ as a new mysticism” Sweet in his book Quantum Spirituality” quotes Karl Rahner, “stating: “The Christian of tomorrow will be a mystic, one who has experienced something, or he will be nothing.”
Warren Smith notes that Rick Warren said:“I think this is part of this New Spirituality that we are seeing birthed around us” (Rick Warren and Leonard Sweet, The Tides of Change, op. cit, introductory information sheet.)
This is what the emergent church is about! It is the new spirituality.
Warren Smith states: “What is more, concerning “Speaking of spiritual “channels,” Sweet expresses his personal gratitude in Quantum Spirituality to channeler and veteran New Age leader, David Spangler. . . . A pioneering spokesperson for the New Age, Spangler has written numerous books over the years that include Emergence: The Rebirth of the Sacred; Revelation: The Birth of a New Age; and Reimagination of the World: A Critique of the New Age, Science, and Popular Culture. His book Revelation: The Birth of a New Age is a compilation of channeled transmissions he received from his disembodied spirit-guide “John.” At one point in Revelation, Spangler documents what “John” prophesied about “the energies of the Cosmic Christ” and “Oneness”: (From A “Wonderful” Deception by Warren Smith, Lighthouse newsletter March 2010).
The New Age movement is also grateful to Spangler who writes, “As the energies of the Cosmic Christ become increasingly manifest …many individuals will begin to respond with the realization that the Christ dwells within them. …and will begin to awaken to their heritage of Christhood and Oneness with God, the Beloved.” (The Revelation, p. 177)
Sweet’s involvement with a top New Age leader, a channeler of spirits, does not seem to bother him, nor others. That’s how far we have come down this broad way of heresy. Never mind that Spangler wrote the way to Christ is through Lucifer. Yes we should learn to love all God’s creatures, both good or bad, and swallow your medicine of tolerance so you can be part of the new globalism in religion.
Sweet further writes “New Light leaders are bearers of the divine fire, connectors of the divine energy; “New Light believers are a possessed people: Possessed by a higher power, possessed by a Christ consciousness”;“New Lights are force fields of meaning through which the flow of energy takes the form of the love and grace of God. New Light leaders are energy connectors, open systems, transformational vortices who allow themselves first to receive, then channel the highest energies of love and truth coming into the planet.” He also includes the idea that “New Light embodiment means to be “in connection” and “information” with other faiths….”, further explaining, and most disturbing, that “One can be a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ without denying the flickers of the sacred in followers of Yahweh, or Kali, or Krishna.” (p.130)
What does this “New Christianity” look like? The emergent church is an accurate reflection of the transformation already taken place, as even some of the missionary organizations have used other religion’s practices as bridges to reach the lost, ignoring that bridges go both ways.
Consider the story of Rev. Ann Holmes, an Episcopal priest for about 21 years, who decided in 2006 that she was also a Muslim. She says both Islam and Christianity are compatible at the most basic level. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2003751274_redding17m.html
Or Ann Holmes Redding, who was director of faith formation at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral, who has been a priest since being ordained in 1984. She was drawn to the Muslim faith after an introduction to Islamic prayers by a Muslim left her profoundly moved. Redding graduated from Brown University, earned masters’ degrees from two seminaries, and received her Ph.D. in New Testament from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.
It was at St. Mark’s that she first became drawn to Islam as a local Muslim leader gave a talk at the cathedral in 2005, then prayed before those attending. Redding was moved. As he dropped to his knees and stretched forward against the floor, it seemed to her that his whole body was involved in surrendering to God. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/ABPub/zoom/html/2003751283.html
Like Yoga, this has made its influence into the church by women. We have emergent church leaders with interfaith promoters teaching prayer with body postures and without using the mind. Well, they are certainly out of their minds with this argument.
How extensive are these inroads into the church? Emergent church leader Doug Pagitt, pastor of Solomon’s Porch, has endorsed this practice in his book, Body Prayer. In it he promotes yoga, and states, “Head-oriented prayer can focus on getting the words just right, while leaving out the rest of who you are. Body Prayer helps you become fully engaged in prayer as you connect with God using more than mere words. “
He called this “breathless praying”, stating that ‘Talking to God can seem to be such an abstraction, Don’t use words – use your body.”
In other words, abandon thinking.
Yoga teacher Susan Bordenkircher’s webpage linked to Thomas Ryan, a certified Kripalu yoga instructor, who states, “Imagine what it would feel like to pray with your whole body––how powerful your prayer could become.” Thomas Ryan, author of Interreligious Prayer, A Christian Guide, says that we have prayed “from the shoulders up—never through their whole person.” Implicit in the title of his book is the inclusion of the practices of other religions into our own Christian experience.
Unless a church is active in its discernment, aware of the new intrusion, and committed to be resistant to these changes, the pastor and congregation will succumb to the transformative spirit that is spreading itself over the world as a blanket.
If you are not practicing a constant vigilance, aware of the things that want to intrude, you will yield to it, either by compromise or by its finding a way in through others who have accepted it, and are teaching it. This has all come about from neglect, a neglect of judging. If we had been paying attention and equipped ourselves through prayer and the Scriptures, these winds of doctrine would not be in the church. If the church took the time to educate herself on the new spiritual movements, she would not be influenced by them. We are not to have a cult mentality, accepting teachings without first looking into them to see if they are correct, but if the shoe fits we will walk in it.
Politics and Religion beached on the same shore
If people actually paid attention to the politicians’ words and took the time to understand what they meant, many would not have voted them in (year after year).
Obama the TRANSFORMATIVE president for the new America sat under social activist Jeremiah Wright for 20 years, and now he has found a new spiritual advisor, Jim Wallis, who fits well in his administration. Reported to be an admitted Socialist and Communist. Wallis was a part of the radical Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) in the 1960s. He believes the gospel is about the redistribution of wealth.
Emergent Brian McLaren is a regular columnist for Jim Wallis’ Sojourners. This tells you what is really taking place. David Noebel has written a brilliant article about Jim Wallis in WorldNetDaily. He states, “Wallis and his Sojourners’ community of fellow travelers believe Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez, Daniel Ortega, and the other revolutionary forces are the Communist paradises the U.S. needs to emulate in order to establish ‘social justice.’”
America is becoming more religious but not as one would think. When President Obama was campaigning for his health care package he wanted it heard at your church or synagogue. Yes, social justice is coming to a church near you! This absolutely affects the gospel.
Thousands of religious leaders got a call urging them to push health care reform from the pulpit. Obama spoke to about 140,000 people of faith in a conference call and webcast. He and a White House official discussed the moral dimension of health care, telling the mostly Christian audience that “this debate over health care goes to the heart of who we are as a people.” (Editor’s Note: Don’t forget the Bush administration’s plan for “Clergy Response Teams,” groups of pastors that would assist the federal government—notably FEMA—in maintaining order among congregations and encouraging their flocks to “obey the government” by relocating, evacuating, surrendering firearms, etc. This is nothing new. Hitler used the same tactic when organizing the German church into an arm of the state. Quelling dissent among Christians and using pastors to bring their congregations into line with Third Reich policies actually enabled the Holocaust.)
Obama asked about 1,000 rabbis to preach his political agenda in their sermons on Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year — one of the holiest days of the Jewish year. Obama told the rabbis that “we are God’s partners in matters of life and death” and asked them to “tell the stories of health care dilemmas to illustrate what is a stake” in their sermons, Rabbi Jack Moline of Virginia wrote. (Abrams, Fox News)
What happened to the separation of church and state? It seems it only matters when the ACLU and the government think it is challenging their agendas.
This is a health bill that Obama has stated is about abortion, so how does the church entertain this? Instead of health, it is really “death.” Can a man honestly lecture us on health when he is willing to let pre-born children die in abortions? This is not about health care but about abortion being funded and by the government. Even though he has signed an executive order that abortions are not to be funded by this bill, there are so many loopholes abortion advocates can work their way around anything written like this. The law becomes like putty in their hands, as they already circumvented it to come up with this “health bill.” Besides what congress is doing is unconstitutional, it is showing what progressives are really about. Fairness, the will of the people is not part of the program. Instead, the Hegelian dialectic that was used in communism is being used on a massive scale to persuade public opinion. You become changed and you “be the change” for others, like a chemical reaction of assimilation.
Some have stated there are those in the current administration who have read Saul Alinsky’s book Rules for Radicals. It has been said Obama taught from this book as a lecturer. This is no ordinary book—it is a guide on methodologies for socialist change. Whom Alinsky dedicated this book to should be shouted from the rooftops. Knowing this helps us understand exactly what is going on in America and even in some churches. Alinsky wrote, “Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgement to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins—or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom — Lucifer.”
In the purpose chapter in the beginning of the book, he quotes Job 7:1 “the life of man upon earth is a warfare.” This is not a good translation from the Douay-Rheims Bible; it actually means hardship, which of course would not be as effective a word for the promotion of socialism. Right from the beginning Alinsky cites history incorrectly, saying it was early idealistic Christians who urged to violence and burned the system down. And he then speaks as a surviving communist of the McCarthy era.
Alinsky does not understand anything spiritual because he has sided with the Devil, he revises history and twists the truth. Satan fosters war and he comes to deceive people in following his continued rebellion against God. When one makes the first rebel in the universe a hero this becomes a very different situation than promoting the socialism of the past.
This reminds me of David Spangler’s shocking statement “Christ is the same force as Lucifer… Lucifer prepares man for the experience of Christhood. (He is) the great initiator” (From Reflections on the Christ, p. 140) Lucifer is Satan coming to deceive, as an angel of light. Whether it’s in politics or religion it is all the same result – devastation.
Paul recognized us as “church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth (1 Tim. 3:15). Many churches are damaged; some can be repaired, some cannot. It is up to the leadership what direction they will take. To do nothing is not an option. We must be pro -active.
Just as progressives in government ignore the Constitution, we have leaders in the church that ignore the Bible and want to change it as well. The only way the church is prevented from going into error is by people standing firm on the Word and speaking out. Unfortunately, many churches are not listening to those doing the research; this is becoming an emergency situation. If you care for the church, inform the pastors and give them information on these movements, since they are supposed to be watching over the sheep to protect them from error and wolves. Unfortunately, many are not, as I have experienced firsthand.
It’s easy to have a type of peace in life, have no involvement, say nothing, and be left out of any conflict. That time is over. All of us need to be involved. Send to your pastors the articles or portions of them from apologetic sites that are watching on these matters. I recommend you also write letters to ministries involved in promotion of these teachings. In a good manner, tell them from the Word of God what it is they are doing wrong.
Our country is being transformed from the inside out. The America we once knew is vanishing. Unfortunately, the very same thing is happening to historic Christianity.
Until we become more serious about the enemy inside the church and the real spiritual warfare that is taking place, the church will continue to deteriorate in its influence until what is left are mere traditions. Fortunately, reality has slapped Americans in the face and many have awakened. Americans see the deception working in politics but generally, we have a blind eye to seeing it inside the church. It’s real and it is happening to churches all across the land[s]. And people are being confused and hurt.
Become Aware -Awake and Alive
Rom 13:11-12: “And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.”
Eph 5:11-17: “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light. Therefore He says: ‘Awake, you who sleep, arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.’ See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. (from Let Us Reason Ministries at: www.letusreason.org – used with permission.)
Ah, the New Age philosophy continues to encroach the church and many are those who are succumbing to it without even knowing. There are some churches scheduling yoga classes right in their church facilities. Although McLaren has pretty much gone the way of Rob Bell by now (out of sight mostly, enjoying his liberating new life), the damage is done. You (and your readers 🙂 ) might find this video useful, it details the emergent church in the USA – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHjpgsh_TZ8
The Narrowing Path said:
I’m liking you more as every hour (and comment) passes, Rodi! I watched this film (and its sequel, Church of Tares) last year in the earliest stage of my research. It was so eye opening, and connected me with a lot of faithful brothers and sisters to further investigate these false teachings. A year later and it is indeed a dark new age that has dawned. But also, I see the Holy Spirit powerfully at work in the world and in the hearts and minds of God’s people. Just not where some would like to think. May our Lord bring the full number into the fold and return in glory soon!