With Real Concern for the Third Wave, Word-of-Faith, Signs & Wonders, Laughing Charismatics
What’s going on in there?
Satan’s goal is for deception, the leaven of apostasy, and the destruction of God’s work!
Is this laughter movement of God, or are the devils laughing the hardest of all?
Jesus is the TRUTH personified (John 14:6); the Devil is the LIE personified. (John 8:44).
Are you following the TRUTH or the LIE?
“Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven…the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees” (Mat. 16:6,12). “Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?” (1 Cor. 5:6). Should we identify with the Charismatic and Ecumenical movements? Are the great changes sweeping through churches in the twentieth century in keeping with God’s Word?
The honest Charismatic Christians believe the sign-gifts are valid for today and have true motives and efforts to follow Scripture. These ones are trying to be faithful to God in prayer, bringing God praise, evangelism, a stand for justification by grace through faith, and some have an expository pulpit message. Charismatic pastors include those who are very concerned about apostasy and the bizarre phenomenon appearing in the churches.
Other Charismatics openly follow experiences that oppose Scripture. Once this standard is adopted in preference to the Word of God, the depraved imaginations of man or devil arise to the occasion. LYING leaders are deplorable anywhere! They include the cheap politicians and the corrupt preachers.
What Kind of Leaders?
The television audience, flicking past the Soaps and the Muppets, often pause at the Trinity Broadcasting Network to wonder at the incredible display of shallowness, extravagance, and New Age brand of Christianity. Long-haired male role-models adorn the “glory” of the woman, ignorant about the worldwide standard of manliness, “nature,” or their “shame” (1 Cor. 11:1-19). Jan Crouch replaced Tammy Faye as the Queen-of-the-painted-ladies and the fairy-god-mother of religious fantasy. What in the world did TBN supporters learn out of the whole PTL mess? What Christian trying to witness has not been mocked in the wake of the Bakker and Swaggart scandals! The founder of TBN, Paul Crouch boasts, “I am a little god! Critics be gone!” :”(Hank Hanegraaff, Christianity in Crisis, Eugene: Harvest House,
1993), p. 112)”:
The Apostle Peter warned about religious leaders who are lustful and are experts in greed. They capture converts and exploit the weak (2 Pet. 2:14-19). In contrast to TBN’s foolishness, the cults on television deceptively look like true wholesome New Testament Christianity! It is easy to see how people get confused.
Kenneth Hagin, is known as the father of the Word-Faith movement. He actually plagiarized E.W. Kenyon “whose life and ministry were enormously impacted by such cults as Science of the Mind, the Unity School of Christianity, Christian Science, and New Thought metaphysics.” :”(Hanegraaff, ibid., p. 32.)”: Kenyon was an occultist! :”(G. Richard Fisher, A Look at Spiritual Pandemonium, Personal Freedom
Outreach Journal, Oct.-Dec. 1994, p. 16)”:
Avanzini, Capps, Cerullo, Cho, Copeland, Crouch, Hickey, Howard-Browne, Price, Savelle, and Tilton all follow these same doctrines of devils (1 Tim. 4:1). Now Kenneth Copeland whines, “I was shocked when I found out who the biggest failure in the Bible actually is…The biggest one in the whole Bible is God.” :”(Hanegraaff, ibid., p. 125)”:
Rodney Howard-Browne believes Jesus left His deity in Heaven. What a serious error! Jesus charged the Jews, “if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins…Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am” (John 8:24,58). :”(Fisher, ibid., p. 15,16)”:
Marilyn Hickey tells others to just create what you need, speaking it into being, “Speak to your billfold. Say, ‘You big, thick billfold full of money…You’re just jammed full of money” :”(Hanegraaff, ibid., p. 351)”:
The wealthiest Word-Faith preachers have the biggest mailing lists. Confession works in one direction, from the suckers in the audience to the Faith preacher.
What Kind of Signs and Wonders?
John Wimber of the Vineyard Christian Fellowship, holds “Signs and Wonders Seminars” throughout the world, claiming healing is promised in the atonement. A sign of the movement’s confusion is evident. Wimber is sick with cancer!
Miracles do not prove God’s favor. In Deuteronomy 13:1-5, God “proveth” or tests the love of His people by seeing if they will go after a “prophet” who has “a sign or a wonder” (vs. 3,1). God wants His own to “fear” Him enough to “put the evil away from the midst of thee” (vs. 4-5). The “prophet or a dreamer of dreams” will lead people to the a “little g” god (vs. 1-2)! Kenneth Copeland’s blasphemes, “You don’t have a god in you, you are one!” :”(Hanegraaff, ibid., p. 110)”: Under the Law, God commanded the ultimate censuring of such heretics for the sake of purity – death! (vs. 5). God’s counsel, to either choose between false teachers who approach His people or else obedience to His Word, is still strong today. God measures the love that people claim. The barometer is if you really love Him, then you will obey Him (John 14:21)!
In the “last days…evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived” (2 Tim. 3:1,13). The Lord Jesus warned that “many” prophets doing these wonders in His name will be damned to hell (Mat. 7:21-23)! You wouldn’t want to be identified with evil, would you? “An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonah” (Mat. 12:39). The point is that the resurrection of the Son of God ought to be sufficient to bring joy into your life! Rodney Howard-Browne admits to elevating an experience with the devil above the TRUTH, “But I’d rather be in a church where the devil and the flesh are manifesting than in a church where nothing is happening because people are too afraid to manifest anything.” :”(Fisher, ibid., p. 13)”:
Charismatics prophesy a worldwide revival for the end times. They are wrong! Wide-spread turning to Christ is not predicted until the tribulation preaching of the 144,000! Scripture predicts for this period a great number of false teachers, false prophets, LYING signs and wonders, and a great falling away from the TRUTH to follow seducing spirits! Prophecy points to an ever-increasing worldwide apostasy with many false prophets deceiving many, not a revival (Mat. 24:3-5, 11)! “False prophets…shall shew great signs and wonders, insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect” (Mat. 24:24)! “Satan” is working toward “all power and signs and lying wonders” (2 Thes. 2:7-9)! He is the master of “great wonders,” and “miracles” (Rev. 13:13-14)! Christian, be wary of the demonic deception of the “Signs and Wonders” movement of the last days.
The New Age Religion also received the signs and wonders by the laying on of hands! Humanity is headed for a one-world religion that is open to deception in the name of Jesus. It’s as if the cults use the name “Jesus” as their password for authenticity! The New Age produces unity with diversity and it lacks judgment. :”(Albert James Dager, “Rodney Howard-Browne and the Toronto Blessing,”
Media Spotlight, 1995, pp. 13,15.)”: Some Charismatics are even guilty of presenting the Holy Spirit as a spirit guide. :”(T. Tillin, “Is It Revival?” Banner Ministries, Summer 1994)”: Incredible! Satan cleverly turns multitudes to the false teachers while making a mockery of Christianity! Many who follow a feel-good religion are not ready to hear the hard sayings of Christ (John 6:60). The only disciples that the Lord Jesus commends will “continue” in the Word of TRUTH (John 8:31-32)! Test all experiences by Scripture and follow the Lord!
What Kind of Prophesy?
We know Joseph Smith, Ellen G. White, and the Watchtower are false prophets. How about the Charismatics who declare, “Thus saith the Lord…” and “God’s message for you is…”? Jesus gave a powerful warning. Do not ignore it! “Beware of false prophets … Ye shall know them by their fruits” (Mat. 7:15,16). The “fruit” of a false prophet is a false prophecy!
By definition, a false prophet is described in Deuteronomy 18:20-22. Explanations in parenthesis are mine. “But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word (just one) in my name (words like “The Lord told me…” or “I just sense in my spirit”), which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. (Censuring false prophets protects people from deep hurt and loss of confidence in God’s Word. Do we read: “Let that prophet readjust his figures”? “Forget the past”? “Give him a second chance”? “We all make mistakes”? “He may be just ‘kind-of-a-prophet'”? “Wait and see what harm was done first”? No!) And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? (That is a good question!) When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, (False charismatic prophesy is common! God spoke through the prophets when? In times PAST! That’s history! Hebrews 1:1), but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: (Stick with the “more sure Word of prophecy” which is Scripture! 2 Peter 1:19) thou shalt not be afraid of him.” (Don’t let the scare tactics rattle you. Mature Christians look for Jesus to come, but do not set dates or follow those who do!)
Anyone who goes after false prophets after all the warnings from God is very, very foolish! The Charismatic prophets miserably fail the test of a true prophet. They claim to be :”(T. Tillin, ‘Is It Revival?’ Banner Ministries, Summer 1994)”: to 65% accurate! C. Peter Wagner said in Indianapolis, “Many of your churches also are now becoming involved in prophetic movement. And I’m talking about serious prophecy; I’m talking about Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, Isaiah kind of prophecy, where God speaks to the churches.” :”(David W. Cloud, ‘Charismatic Confusion in Indianapolis,’ O TIMOTHY,
Special Issue, p. 30)”: Such boasting is common among false prophets. The Watchtower said a group was to speak as a “prophet…as was done toward Ezekiel,” known as “Jehovah’s Christian Witnesses” :”(Watchtower, March 15, 1972, p.189-190)”: Definitely wrong! TRUE prophets are zealous against sin and error (Jer. 14:14; 23:16-32; 27:15; Zech. 13:2-5)!
Rodney Howard-Browne predicted an outpouring of the Spirit in which, “Eyeballs will form, legs and arms will grow out…” He said God will very soon begin to miraculously transport people from place to place. He has the same source of information as Benny Hinn who said, Adam, “with one thought he would be on the moon.” :”(Hanegraaff, ibid., p. 119)”: Astral projection is of the occult, connected with voodoo and the black arts. :”(Fisher, ibid., p. 14)”:
Charismatic leaders LIED about Bob Jones’s (not the godly Bob Jones of Bob Jones University) prophetic dating of a drought. Paul Cain, “the most anointed prophet that’s in the world today,” gushingly predicted, “So that that glorious Church might be revealed in the last days because the Lord Jesus is worthy to be lifted up by a Church that has reached the full maturity of the God-man!” Maturity? It’s just more Corinthian carnality and heresy (1 Cor. 3:3)! Paul Cain messed up on the timing of an earthquake; but Wimber claimed it came true! :”()”: Don’t put up with “ignorant” people who think they are prophets and care less for decency and order (1 Cor. 14:37-40)!
What Kind of Revelation?
John Hinkle heard a voice saying that on June 9, 1994, “I will rip all evil from the earth” etc. Lacking common sense and a respect for biblical TRUTH, the Trinity Broadcasting Network was sucked in and became the vehicle for the LYING spirit! :”(Cloud, ibid., p. 31,34-35)”: “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1)!
Gullible crowds embraced Peter Popoff as he claimed God spoke directly to him while he really had his wife speaking to him by an electronic ear device. Like Lea and Popoff, Robert Tilton had to be exposed by the secular world before this religious movement would censure him. Where is this “spirit of discernment”?
Under “revelation knowledge,” Benny Hinn claimed each Person of the Trinity is triune so “there’s nine of them” and “Jesus was born again!” :”(Hanegraaff, ibid., pp. 123, 173)”: Study the Bible and sit under the preaching of a faithful man of God so you won’t get sucked into these extra-biblical teachings!
James Ryle, a Wimber associate, said, “The Lord spoke to me and said, ‘What you saw in the Beatles–the gifting and sound that they had–was from Me.'” :”(M.H. Reynolds, “False Prophets…Pseudo Apostles, & A New Gospel,”
Fundamental Evangelistic Association, Vol. XII, Issue 1)”: Hold the applause; the Beatles were completely antichrist! (Send for a Beatles paper). Ryle’s vision from a god was nothing more than a Satanic delusion.
Oral Robert’s god held him hostage until people gave him more money! He also made a mistake on the cost of this faith-healer’s hospital. Clearly, his god does not know the future! Rodney Howard-Browne does, so he says! He reports occurrences of knowing “what’s going to happen one year, two years, three years in the future.” :”(Fisher, ibid., p. 15)”: Folks, God does not give us omniscience. The fortune-teller techniques open up all kinds of delusion. John Wimber said Christ could come at any time; but soon afterwards said little unborn children would live to see the coming of the Lord. :”(Reynolds, ibid)”: – That’s like, just blab whatever sounds good at the time!
What Kind of Evangelism?
Dr. Jack Deere, is one of the top theological leaders of the Vineyard Power Evangelism movement along with C. Peter Wagner. He says that the gospel is not about Jesus Christ who died for our sins and was buried and raised on the third day. When probed at length for an answer to explain the gospel, he was asked, “Could you perhaps tell me informally what you believe to be the gospel?” All Deere could say was, “I’m not sure.” :”(Reynolds, ibid)”:
The word “power” tickles the ears of this crowd; so they claim to have “power evangelism!” Larry Lea, “The Apostle of Prayer” for this century, took authority over San Francisco to drive out all of the homosexuals! (What an embarrassment as he bellowed across the airwaves daily about his spiritual warfare!) Get this; the homosexuals are still there, laughing at Christians! The Charismatic world applauded Lea, a self-condemned LIAR. It took secular television to pull back his fleece! “Power Evangelism” is nothing more than a powerful sound-system — blasting to the sheep and goats lost in their little wilderness of confusion!
These pip-squeaks think they bind the devil while Michael, God’s POWERFUL angel had to say, “The Lord rebuke thee.” John Wimber personally comes against the devil as he commands the Holy Spirit to help and Satan to leave!2 :”(Reynolds, ibid)”:
What Kind of Healing?
Frederick Price does not allow sickness in his home so he says; but his wife was treated for cancer! :”(Hanegraaff, ibid., p. 237)”: Charles and Francis Hunter while holding a healing crusade, sent Francis to the doctor because of pink eye.24
Jamie Buckingham, editor-at-large for the Charismatic Movement’s most prominent magazine, Charisma, was pronounced healed of cancer by his wife, Oral Roberts and other false prophets. Buckingham claimed, the still small voice of God told him he would live to be a hundred. He died of cancer in 1992. Religious people need to think! This editor with such great responsibility for the reports and articles to the Charismatic world listened to a voice but it was not God’s!25
William Branham, of the Oneness-Pentecostal cult, is one of the great fathers of the modern healing movement. He pronounced great numbers healed who died of the same problems shortly following their “healing” experience.26 Branham denounced the trinity as coming directly from the devil; yet Hagin, Copeland, and Hinn speak highly of the cult leader!27
Various cults testify of healings and blessings flowing from their ministries. Even when healings are real, that is still no proof that they came from God (Deut. 13:1-5; Mat. 7:21-23).
What Kind of Testimony?
Is the “Holy” Laughter Movement Christianity? Should we call it Satananity? Is it really Sanity at all?
The 700 Club and TBN crowds are hungry for signs and wonders, gratifying experiences, and goose-bump feelings. They are wide open to the demonic logic of the satanic counterfeits. The devils are laughing over the whole sham of these public spectacles in the name of Jesus Christ! Entertainment, emotionalism, and excitement still fill a church; but as in Hosea’s day, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee… seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children” (Hosea 4:6).
What Kind of Wine?
People have a choice whether to blindly follow a popular voice in the religious world or to “Study to shew thyself approved unto God” (2 Tim. 2:15)! Joy (chara) is not interchangeable with laughter (galeo). Joy is an inner delight with God for all He has done and is doing. Joy comes from believing God’s Word (Rom. 15:13; John 15:11). Joy remains during our trials after laughter is gone (2 Cor. 8:2; 1 Thes. 1:6; Jam. 1:2). Correctly interpreted, Proverbs 17:22 emphasizes the rejoicing heart contrasted to a broken spirit.
There is no biblical gift for a spirit of laughter. Rodney Howard-Browne repeats, “Fill — let it bubble out your belly — Ho-ho, He-he — Fill — Ho-ho-ho, Ho-ha-ha.” His spiritual expressions and methodology are more at home with the occult than in Christianity.28 Never is there the slightest hint in Scripture that we are to worship God from the belly. “Living waters,” in John 7:38, has nothing to do with laughter! The “living waters” symbolize the Holy Spirit who dwells in the heart or the innermost part of a Christian.
Rodney Howard-Browne’s meetings are not Spirit-filled laughter or joy, but hysteria and frenzy which are clearly condemned by God! This bunch is responsible as millions view the chaos and disorder as a “Christian” madness (1 Cor. 14:23). Rodney Howard-Browne likes to call himself “The Holy Ghost Bartender” who dispenses “new wine”29 In Ephesians 5:18, the filling of the Holy Spirit will manifest Himself in honoring God musically, melody in hearts, thankfulness, fear, and good marriages. See the context! This verse will never justify “laughing in the spirit.”
What Kind of Power?
Every Christian ought to view this “falling under the power” with grave concern! Born-again believers are not safe from satanic deceptions and experiences while fulfilling conditions for demonic activity. The closest biblical counterparts of those who fall backwards, called “slain in the spirit” today, include those who are the sinning, the unbelieving, the demonized, and God’s enemies! A demon-possessed son fell into the fire and the water (Mat. 17:15). Judas and his band fell backwards when Jesus identified Himself as the great “I am” (John 18:6). Saul of Tarsus and company all fell to the earth before Jesus’ glory (Acts 26:13,14). The priest and the erring prophet of wine and vomit fell backwards in Isaiah 28:13. Are they different from the new wine and the “vomiting-in-the-spirit” and the “slain-in-the-spirit” at a Rodney Howard-Browne meeting?
Worship is always to be biblical, orderly and reverent in manner. God’s Word underscores a true spiritual response to God’s power. The godly, in reverential awe, adoration and worship, fall forward in a prostrate position. There is no trace of hysterical laughter or convulsions (Gen. 17:1-3; Lev. 9:24; Joshua 5:13-15; Ez. 1:28; 43:1-5; 44:4; Mat. 17:5-6; 28:9-10; Rev. 1:17; 7:11; 11:16-17).
The phenomena is clearly explained in O TIMOTHY Magazine, Bible Baptist Church, 1219 N. Harns Road, Oak Harbor, WA 98277, Volume 11, Issue 9-10, 1994.
What Kind of Spirits?
The spirit of antichrist will appear to be Christ. As the serpent beguiled Eve, believers are seduced by “another spirit” (2 Cor. 11:3,4).
The “Holy” Laughter movement, like the Mormon movement, developed through a boy with an experience from a god. Rodney Howard-Browne says he prayed, “Either You come down here and touch me, or I will come up there and touch You.”30 He will meet God one day all right! But it will be on his face and bended knees (Isaiah 6; Phil. 2:10)!
You can’t trust demons. John Wimber gets doctrine from demons! He says some demons have bodies etc. because the demons told him.31 Wimber admittedly does not know if the encounters taking place in the Vineyard movement are from God or the devil. In fact, he says “there’s nothing in Scripture that supports these kinds of phenomena.” Surely you would expect the head of the Vineyard Christian Fellowship that popularized this movement to go to the Word and test the spirits whether they are of God (1 John 4:1)! No, Wimber says, “So I feel no obligation to try to explain it.”32
Howard-Browne’s proof that this is the move of God is that when he leaves it doesn’t stop.33 People, think! The blasphemous re-crucifixion of Christ in the Mass does not stop (Heb. 9:28; 10:10)! Rock music, the occult, or Satan’s effort to destroy this generation does not stop! The aberrations in the Church at Corinth did not stop because Paul left; they stopped because the Apostle confronted them with the book of 1 Corinthians. Then by the time he wrote 2 Corinthians, the carnal extravagance stopped.
A study of demonology reveals that demons interact with the mind, the emotions and the flesh. God deals with us primarily in the spirit. A 1994 article of Charisma quotes Rodney Howard-Browne as saying, “One night I was preaching on hell, and laughter just hit the whole place. The more I told people what hell was like, the more they laughed.” Friends, the Great White Throne judgment and the horrors of hell are no laughing matter! The works of the flesh and Satan’s devils mock the Word of God and interrupt scripture. Could Browne single-handedly get so many people to fall for such a Satanic mockery? These people are responding to the powers of darkness. Their attitudes took a bad change toward preaching about God, sin, morality, growing in grace, and the Church.
SIGNS AND WONDERS? One wonders why this group bothers to use the Bible at all. The focus is reduced to “will it sell?” Jesus Christ’s command to “Go ye into all the world” becomes “Come to our meetings!” A “new zeal for evangelism” is a zeal to draw other people into the same religious aberrations. The idea of evangelizing people is to zap them.34 Their substitute is a cheap “go-with-the-flow” message.
Howard-Browne blusters how at the age of twelve, “The voice said these words to me…Your mom will not be home today.”35 Are Browne’s experiences that of some super-saint or one involved with clairvoyance? People are encouraged to let go of their doctrine and clear their minds of any biblical objections. He says this is “The only way you’re going to understand what God is doing is with your heart.”36 (Check your brain at the door!) Beloved, God warns that your heart is deceitful and desperately wicked (Jer. 17:9)! The Bereans used their minds, searching the Scriptures even to check out the true preachers of integrity, the Apostles! Then God commended them (Acts. 17:11; 1 Thes. 5:21). Without the principles of the Word of God, how are we to see through the deceptions, the complex issues, the false Jesus, the false gospel, and the false Spirit? (2 Cor. 11:4)
In a movement so theologically poverty-stricken, real preaching is very rare! Preaching is reduced to silly shallowness, subjectivism, and spiritual hype. Scriptures are jerked out of context to legitimize the experience (smart devil)! Charisma magazine admits that the pulpit becomes irrelevant. The whole blasphemous circus makes “the word of God of none effect” (Mark 7:13).37 A sign of demonic activity is demonstrated by the irreverence, ignorance, intimidation, brainwashing techniques, fundraising games, and overall hypocrisy. This kind of Charismatic phenomena departed from the Headship of Christ, the authority of Scripture, the mission of Bible evangelism and Bible education. Now it’s all a joke to them!
Some pastors recognize the sham but they never rebuke the sin. Such cowardly shepherds pet the wolves who eat the lambs!
Continue to part 2
24 Cloud, ibid., p. 22.
25 David W. Cloud, “Charismatic Leader Dies After Being Healed,” O
TIMOTHY, (1992), pp. 1-8.
26 Cloud, Special Issue, pp. 46-48.
27 Hanegraaff, ibid., p. 30.
28 Fisher, ibid., 12,13.
29 Dager, ibid., p. 10.
30 Dager, ibid. p. 2.
31 Cloud, Special Issue, p. 38.
32 Dager, ibid. p. 4,5.
33 Dager, ibid. p. 3.
34 T. Tillian, ibid.
35 Fisher, ibid., p. 14.
36 Dager, ibid. p. 5.
37 Dager, ibid., p. 12.