As we turn from Bible studies to discipleship, evangelism and revival, we will have to deal the myriad of popular misconceptions and deceptions that ensnare so many. People are not passive and waiting for us to show up. They are solving their problems in the best ways they know, usually discarding a powerless Christianity that emphasizes form and not results like Jesus commanded us to produce.
Besides debunked sovereignty of God delusions, [I mean why did Jesus command us to pray if we are not key players on Earth?] to various oriental mysticisms running rampant in Christian groups, why should we not have to deal with these deceptions as revival hits the church, with truth, love and power running in the streets?
One of the main deceptions is that delivered by A Course in Miracles, that like Christian Science, offers answers that the form driven, powerless church cannot answer. People need answers, not just for what they are doing wrong, but what to do right. And the offerings of A Course in Miracles are not the answer, yet many espouse its principles and ideals.
Below is a modified quote from Marianne Williamson, (not the author of A Course in Miracles) but who wrote the bestselling book, A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles in A Course in Miracles. For us this means that a lot of nice but undiscerning people have read these books and not found a problem with them.
For starters, the original quote by Marianne Williamson is nothing more than Hinduism disguised in Christian terminology.” It teaches that all roads “lead to God in the end.”
This challenges the clear statements of the Bible that Jesus Christ of Nazareth 2000 years ago, as God in human flesh, was the exclusive Son of God, and made the singular way back to God from the sin of Adam.
This is what bothers the Oriental religions so much. Jesus is not “a” way; He is “the only” way to Father God.
The original quote by Marianne Williamson can be found here: http://skdesigns.com/internet/articles/quotes/williamson/our_deepest_fear/ Apparently Nelson Mandela used parts of it for a speech he did.
This site talks about A Course in Miracles: http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/courseinmiracles.htm
I modified this infamous quote to better reflect the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. My modifications are in italics.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, but that we can be more than any human could possibly think. Our deepest fear of the old-man flesh mind is that we will discover that only in God by Jesus Christ can we be powerful beyond measure. It is our capability to be the light of God because of Jesus, not our darkness that most frightens the mind of the flesh in us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are made to be a child of God by faith in Jesus Christ and made a dwelling place of Holy Spirit, who is the ultimate blessing of the Ages. Your playing small by being independent of God in Jesus does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. Instead we are to give grace to all so they can see Jesus and God’s love more clearly. We are all meant to shine with the love and glory of the risen Lord, Jesus Christ, the only way, truth and life to Father God, as children of God do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God by the redemption that is in the blood of Jesus Christ that puts that glory within us. Adam lost it, the unique and exclusive Jesus made the way to restore and expand it for mankind. It’s not just for some of us; it’s in everyone who is born again by faith in the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ of Nazareth 2000 years ago. And as we let our own portion of Jesus’ light shine by Jesus dwelling within us, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear of the carnal mind, our walking in the presence of God by Jesus within us automatically liberates others as did Jesus, and as Jesus does now. Some we bless, some we terrorize, but we always make an impact for God.”
My editing makes this a better and more accurate Christian statement. But look at how much editing I had to do to redeem it. This is a measure of just how non-Christian the original quote is. By Christian, maybe I should say, more biblically correct.
The Christian revelation of “Christ in you the hope of glory” means that humans are the hope of God for God to fill the Universe with Himself through Jesus. I can quote it, but I have meditated on this for years and am still awed by the potential we have in Jesus for this life now, much less the next age.
Starting with the first line of this passage, things have to be going pretty well for you to not be concerned about your inadequacies. If the Bible is any indication of our deepest fear, it is not that we are inadequate for the problems of life, but the fear that God will not help us and we must look another way, or watch disaster unfold around us.
Only a fool thinks he (or she) can do it alone, and he (or she) has not yet met a big enough challenger, or he (or she) does not love another. Just like with Adam, the temptation to accuse God often looks near and more real than God by His Word.
If by inadequate we mean we do not possess the power to overcome major challenges or impending doom, then yes, perhaps our greatest fear is that we are inadequate because we are not like God, we are limited.
I may be able to pick a certain style of chair or even open a business or use a knife or a gun. I may even be the most exciting and powerful person you ever met with major armies and wealth at my command. But I am inadequate to raise the dead or make the blind to see with brand new body parts.
In a land of wealth and plenty, then ideas and options abound and Marianne Williamson can have a large audience. But if lost in the Sarah desert with no help, no water, no shelter, a broken leg and your child unconscious, it is a different matter. At that point, it is not about me, but can and will God help?
Here is one of the key error statements Marianne Williamson makes:
“We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.”
This has an element of truth in it and a lie. One definition of evil is the twisting of truth. And this is a great modern twist. The glory of God does not dwell in all men. That indwelling glory is exclusive to new creation people called Christians. What makes a biblical Christian is Holy Spirit dwelling in a human, which is the glory of God. The glory of God is Holy Spirit manifesting HImself into the Earth realm. God’s desire is that mutually the human and Holy Spirit manifest the glory of God into the Earth.
The lie of that statement by Marianne Williamson is that all unregenerate man (not born again or made a new creation in Jesus, not with indwelling Holy Spirit) is reflecting now is fallen man, not what God has made us capable of being in Jesus. This recognition of sin and its impact on man is the opposite of various versions of humanism.
Man was never made to be independent of dwelling with and in God, yet that is the path Adam chose. With that man stepped out of God’s great love plan and sin entered the world. But by the exclusive Jesus of the Bible, that love plan can be restored. As one said, “There is a God-sized hole in each one of us and only the true and living God can fill it.” It is what we are made for. To deny this is to deny the reality of God.
And to acknowledge this is to proclaim your own divinity as entirely inadequate.
How it All started:
When Eve sinned and did not die, Adam chose to follow her and not go to God for help. His fear was that God would not help. In my own life that is probably my greatest challenge. Should I trust another, or go another way than God? Has God-given a path that leads to Him?
The cry of God is the opposite, “Live my word. Be bold; be strong, for the Lord God Almighty is with you.” (Joshua 1:5-9)
When Adam was made, he started as the image and likeness of God. Adam lost that for mankind when Adam sinned and chose to call God a liar and believe the devil. So the original aspects of Adam that reflect the original creation are wonderful and of God. But that is a mere shell or residue of the original after the fall.
By Adam sin entered the world and men died spiritually and produced all the evil we see in the world today. We no longer have what God calls His glory in us when we are physically born into this Earth. For God’s glory being in a human, we must start with being divinely born again by believing that God raised Jesus from the dead.
The Way Back: Jesus came to show how Father God really is, and provided THE way back to Father God for intimate oneness with God in this life and forever. The glory of Jesus, as He walked the Earth 2000 years ago, was the best of what unredeemed man could be, God in human flesh. The risen Christ, now glorified and seated besides the Father is what a redeemed human can be.
That is so great as to compare a grain of sand to the entire Universe. Fallen Adam (and the humanity Ms. Williamson talks about) is the grain of sand, and Jesus, the risen and glorified Lord of Creation, the full image of God in man, is the Universe in this analogy. The grain of sand, all that man can be without God dwelling in them by Jesus, is nothing compared to “Christ in us, the hope of glory.” Not a theory, but a person in fullness. Today that is called Christianity in spirit and in truth.
So instead of man being deity, we are meant to be man with indwelling deity – Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Thus each individual human is designed to be a quartet of entities, and not a singularity. When a human is born again by belief so God can enter and dwell within, that is the start of our real potential.
Titanic Deception: The best I could describe Ms. Williamson’s theology is like the guy who sold tickets for the Titanic. A beautiful construction, but going nowhere you want to be, and alas, few survivors when it arrives.
So What? A Course for Miracles was released in 1976. More recently Oprah Winfrey gave the course daily on her XM radio station in 2008/2009. Many people have heard and use the perverted or syncretism terminology of “The Course.”
So, as we evangelize, we will meet people who hear what you say and understand what we are saying very differently. They use many Christian words, but significantly change the meaning. This is similar to talking with Mormons or Christian Scientists.
That is why I prefer miracle healing evangelism or power evangelism in either one-on-one, street ministry or in large crowds. True power miracles by Jesus through men confirm that He is alive, loves people and He is truth. That gives the conversation a much different starting place.
As a result on the ever-increasing number of deceptions aimed at distorting and confusing the message of the Bible, I have learned that as soon as you suspect you are dealing with one deceived with such teachings, to silently bind the spirit of antichrist and error, and command it to go in the name of Jesus, as you talk to them. Usually it takes a few minutes to release their minds, so be patient.
In a few minutes you will be talking to the person free of the demon. That will not change the lies written on their heart, but it will give their cognitive mind a chance to hear truth and start to work on their heart.
As we expand our ministry in forming cell group churches, we have discovered we need to spend time going over basic Christian concepts as these teachings have redefined sin, miracle, God, Jesus, atonement, justification, salvation, Holy Spirit, grace, mercy, redemption, the cross, the blood of Jesus, forgiveness, remission, the new birth, the new creation, born again, Heaven, son, sonship, unity, love, light, Christian, devil, demon, angel and grace.
The devil has taken every key Christian term and redefined it in a network of confusion that is illogical within itself, and totally contradicts the clear teaching of Scripture.
This is how terrified the devil is of the Word of God. the devil is afraid of that dull and dry Bible study or Sunday school because any truth exposes the lie and can make him powerless.
The good news is that since these are all devil deceptions enforced by demons, when we exercise the power and authority of the name of Jesus over the deceived or practitioners, their supernatural “abilities” are removed rather quickly.
The bad news is that these concepts from A Course in Miracles have pervaded our society over the past 36 years (as of 2012), and in most of our Christian churches that do not operate significantly in the dunamis power of God through the name of Jesus. So it is not a matter of “if” you come across such people, but “when” or “as” you come across such people.
Question 1: Do you know people who have been deceived and lost in A Course in Miracles or A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles in A Course in Miracles?
Question 2: What do you think is the appeal of messages like Marianne Williamson’s?
Question 3: How would you help someone lost in such deceptions and error?
Question 4: Would you start your conversations by silently binding the spirit of error and antichrist first?
For basic information in this deception, check out http://www.letusreason.org/BookR3.htm.
This Let Us Reason article is a good primer for understanding the adapted Hinduism and Christian Science teaching that entrap so many today.
Please do not consider this an endorsement of the whole letusreason.com website, but, on this topic, they are clear on the basic issues.
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God bless you and yours to be more noble in Him (Acts 17:11-12), and to get you to walk more fully in His power, wisdom and love.
Jesus is Lord of Heaven and Earth!
Keep Working the Word so God can Work!
Donald C. Mann
Speaker, teacher, navigator and author of:OK, God, Now What? Discovering Our Redemption Battle Prayer for Divine Healing-Field Manual 2