Zebras at a Waterhole in Okaukejo, Etosha Pan, Namibia . PHOTO : J . Rieck

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Saving Christians From Joyce Meyer

  • Save yourselves from this crooked generation!“ (Acts 2:40)
  • Keep a close watch  on  yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers.” (1 Tim 4:16)
  • “My brothers if anyone among  you wanders from  the truth and someone brings him back, let him know that whoever brings  back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul  from death and will cover a multitude of sins .”  (James   5:19,20)
  • “And have mercy on those who doubt, save others by snatching them out of the fire…” (Jude v.23)


This will be the first blog in a series in which I wish to  address  a matter on my heart .

In surveying the church scene  in Namibia,  I  have  said  on a number of occasions to  fellow pastors and   elders, “One of our greatest  duties  in these  days is to ‘save’  Christians!“  I  am not, of course suggesting  at all  that  we  can add to the great saving work of Christ.  Christ alone  saves us and justifies us. PERIOD!

The saving work   to which  I refer here, and which  is  referred  to  in the  texts cited above, relates to the work of biblical shepherding  by pastors. It  also relates to  the brotherly care and concern  which any Christian should have when he or she sees a fellow believer  drifting into  sin and doctrinal error.
Here is my  first concern concern. Many  Namibian Christians   are  enamoured  by the  teachings  of mainly (though not exclusively ) American prosperity teachers. Joel Osteen, Joyce Meyer, Benny Hinn, Frederick  Price, Kenneth Copeland , Myles Munroe  have a substantial following  in the country.  We have Pastor Chris and T.B. Joshua, Ray Mc Cauley   who are the African versions.  The average Christian  on the street  hardly  examines  nor  questions  their teachings.      

A number of  Namibian churches are currently preparing  for  the visit of Joyce Meyer to this country in 2014. If I understand  the above quoted texts correctly,   then  I believe that  biblical Christians have a duty  to  save  those caught in the web of deceit  of these prosperity teachers. I have studied the roots of the prosperity  movement  (The Word of Faith) movement  for more  than 25 years, and I conclude with many others  that this is, frankly speaking , ‘a different gospel’   (Galatians  1:6)
I know that  this posting is not going to make me popular, but I have  come to the conclusion  that if I do not warn you, I will be an unfaithful shepherd,  leaving you in the hands of these fierce  wolves. ( Acts 20 :29-35)

The following  material   is an excerpt from  a blog article  written by   Rick Henderson . You can read the  complete  blog posting at  http://churchismessy.com/2013/08/05/why-i-called-out-joel-osteen-and-joyce-meyer/   My purpose is to alert you to the person and teaching of Joyce Meyer.  

Rick Henderson writes :

When I first heard her tell her story I was deeply moved and impressed.  She is an amazing example of overcoming hurts and abuse.  She will forever have my admiration and respect in that regard.  Furthermore, she gives spectacular advice.  If my wife or if one of my daughters went to her in a moment of crisis, I believe they would return with magnificently helpful advice.  If they went to her for teaching, they would return with deadly heresy.

False Doctrine

1.  She teaches that Jesus literally stopped being the Son of God on the cross:  http://craigbrownsreformedtheology.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/clip-6-joyce-meyer.mp3

“He could have helped himself up until the point where he said I commend my spirit into your hands, at that point he couldn’t do nothing for himself anymore. He had become sin, he was no longer the Son of God. He was sin.”   Joyce Meyer

2.  She teaches that Jesus went to Hell and became the first-born again man: http://craigbrownsreformedtheology.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/clip-7-joyce-meyer.mp3
“Do you know something? The minute that blood sacrifice was accepted Jesus was the first human being that was ever born again. Now that was real it happened when he was in hell.”

3.  She teaches that Jesus paid for our sins in hell  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SwNfOaxIcOM
“There is no hope of anyone going to heaven unless they believe this truth I am presenting. You cannot go to heaven unless you believe with all your heart that Jesus took your place in hell”  Joyce Meyer (The Most Important Decision You Will Ever Make) 

4.  She teaches that words have power and you can release the power of Heaven through your words: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DInxKmfgts0

5.  She teaches that you need special revelation from God to understand what she teaches because it is NOT contained in the  Bible :     http://craigbrownsreformedtheology.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/clip-2-joyce-meyer.mp3
“The Bible can’t even find any way to explain this. Not really. That’s why you’ve got to get it by revelation. There are no words to explain what I’m telling you. I’ve got to just trust God that He’s putting it into your spirit like He put it into mine.”  Joyce Meyer (What Happened from the Cross to The Throne? audio)  
“Now spirits don’t have bodies, so we can’t see them. Okay? There probably is, I believe there is, and I certainly hope there is several angels up here this morning that are preaching with me. I believe that right before I speak some anointed statement to you, that one of them bends over and says in my ear what I’m supposed to say to you.”  Joyce Meyer (Witchcraft & Related Spirits (Part 1) – 2 A-27 Audiotape)

6.  She teaches that she is no longer a sinner: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5dmHJdM63hk

I could continue with examples of her utter misuse of scripture, false teaching and blatant heresy.  In America, Christians have an embarrassment of riches.  We can buy more books, download more podcasts and tune into more helpful teachers than anyone else on the planet.  The lies that she teaches are easily lost in the hum of all the great teachers we hear.  But this is not the case in the third world.
In many other countries their resources are far fewer.  Uneducated pastors, who are doing their very best and uninformed Christians have this garbage pumped into their countries through radio waves and TV broadcasts.   Because Joyce Meyer is endorsed here, she is trusted there.  And, she can afford to spread her message with the money she makes from American Christians who buy her books, CDs and who attend her conferences.  Her influence is severely disrupting the church in the third world.  Her teachings are the unfortunate starting point for Christians in the third world and it is birthing even greater heresies.

The devastating reality that we have to come to grips with is that when we support her here, we support the churches she is undoing there.

Financial Concerns

There is nothing wrong with being wealthy.  I love it when Christians are rich.  That should mean more money to fund the mission.  But there is a line to how much money we as leaders should spend on ourselves.  I don’t know where the line is, but it is somewhere before the ministry purchasing million dollar homes for us and our kids.  That line is somewhere before purchasing us a $10 million private jet.  The line is somewhere before the ministry spending $261, 498 for 68 pieces of furniture.  That equates to $3,845.56 per item.  That line is somewhere before spending so egregiously that the U.S. Senate investigates us.  Joyce Meyer lands on the other side of that line.
The following link includes audio from Joyce Meyer.  Around 5:30 she is asked if people will get more money back to them if they give financially to her  ministry: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tlWQsoA7D24

Not only does she teach giving as a way to leverage more money from God, she is reckless with desperate people.  She is not at all concerned if people give to her instead of paying bills.  This is intolerable!

Questionable Example and Lack of Accountability
I challenge you to watch a typical message by Joyce Meyer.  Here are a few of things you will notice:
·       She pauses about every 5 minutes for applause.  And if people don’t applaud she is likely to say something like, “I’m preaching better than you’re acting.”
·       She talks about herself constantly.  She is the main character in every story she tells.  Even when she talks about herself in a self-deprecating way, some how it comes across in a way that causes people to admire her more.
·       God talks to her and reveals new information to her…a lot!

Her ministry lacks real accountability.  Her family and her close friends are the governing board.  This is an organization that receives almost $100 million dollars annually, and with no substantive accountability.

Conclusion 

What I wrote and linked in the first section should have been enough to completely remove her from our sphere of trust.  
·       Her doctrine is horrific.  
·       Her hermeneutics are horrible.  
·      She is a woman who seems to have an unrestrained love for money and applause.  Her finances are questionable at best.  
·       Her example is questionable at best.  
·    Her impact on desperate people here, as well as churches and pastors around the globe is wildly destructive.

I lament with you a sense of loss if she was a teacher you trusted.  I lament that someone who is so wrong has so much influence with so many.  I do not regret, however, pointing to her as a false teacher and as one who should be rejected.


2 comments:

Seth Meyers said...

I'm glad to see every gun turned against the prosperity gospel, and its Christ-denying foolishness.

Here is a review of a prosperity crusade in our rural African village.
http://sonofcarey.com/2013/02/observations-from-a-recent-prosperity-gospel-crusade-in-our-village/

Joachim Rieck said...

Seth, thank you for your comment and please pray with us that the Lord ALMIGHTY will stop Joyce Meyer from coming to Namibia to bring more confusion into this spiritually devastated land.