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DO NOT BE FOOLED

Watching the Jeremiah Johnson unfolding situation with soberness and fear…


My wife and I ministered for him a few years ago. I sensed something amiss immediately when he found out Carolyn and I were not a big ministry and switched us up with another minister for smaller meetings. Big crowds and popularity are how ministers are evaluated today. If he’s got a big media following he must be good! Especially if he’s sexy and smiles alot (forgive my sarcasm, but that’s pretty much the truth). But I gave him the benefit of the doubt. My wife sensed no anointing on him, and was somewhat disturbed.


Since meeting him I have followed him at a distance and kept feeling more and more uneasy at what I’d hear from him. I knew then something was not right. Now I regret having him endorse one of my books and even quoting him.


Friends, we’ve got to trust in the inward witness and the anointing within us that is truth, and cannot lie (1 John 2:20, 27). If you are living right you can trust in that anointing to lead you.


Now we are learning from his own biological brother that Jeremiah hasn’t been right for many years. According to his brother he prophesies lies and  makes up dreams. Yet he’s in demand to speak at many conferences, and has written best selling books. Money and fame seems to be the name of the game for so many. He speaks of the addiction to ministry and the great need for repentance from all forms of sin and pride while he himself is caught in the web of it. How utterly and shockingly hypocritical! The human heart is indeed deceptive. Only the refining fire can reveal its wickedness.


LET'S KEEP OUR EYES ON JESUS AND NOT MAN


When Mike Bickle’s life and ministry scandals were exposed I knew it was the beginning of a fuller exposure of what happens underneath the surface of so many leaders’ lives. Since then, we’ve seen exposure of TD Jake’s private demons, Misty Edwards, Kevin Prousch, Robin Bullock, Kate Kerr, and now Jeremiah Johnson. And there are many more.


Oh dear believer, do not become disillusioned by all this exposure of leaders' sinful private lives! Do not let these things affect your relationship with the Lord; rather let it draw you closer to Him and see your great need for Him. He is the only Perfect One.


I do not rejoice when any minister falls like this, but I do see the necessity it places on us as leaders and fathers and the body of Christ to first, not exalt or honor any leader above measure, especially young ministers who have had virtually very little time to prove their character and calling. JJ was lifted to prominence in his 20s. We are admonished in Scripture not to despise youth, but also warned of approving men too quickly.


Not too long ago I posted a warning about a 30-year old single female who claims to be both an apostle and a prophet. FB readers pounced all over it and defended her — some of them without any real ministry experience or pedigree. I know believers all have the Holy Spirit, but wisdom and experience should count for something. The Lord is bringing everything to light, especially in leadership. There is much leaven in the body, and the Church is so spotted and wrinkled. Many leaders personal lives are a mess, and their ministries are so tainted with more hype and charisma than true holiness and the anointing.


THE EXAMPLE OF TULSA


Listen to this report from a friend in Tulsa. Let me remind everyone that the city of Tulsa use to be known as the New Jerusalem. Carolyn and I went to Bible school there and lived there for a few years. Back then it seemed like the entire city was “Christian”, but there was a real glory there. Orlando, Florida among a few other cities is becoming like that with large ministries and churches.  I rejoice in that, but I’m always leery of the politics and competition that breeds in such a place. That spirit is everywhere! And when I see the absence of true fathers being replaced by young, sexy faces (image is everything today, and it sells), I know what the backlash of that is. Big egos don’t glow in the dark; they glow in the limelight, but when you’re young you can hardly see it. If you can learn to listen to your spirit without becoming overly suspicious, you will avoid man worship and blind spots.


Notice what has happened in Tulsa when the fathers departed.


“I’ve seen people get stranded here and rendered outcasts because they would not conform to desired image and standards. I’ve seen anointed people get sidelined, blacklisted, or chased out. I have reached the point that I may need to move on out of here. Outsiders are clearly not welcomed and “don’t you dare outshine anyone” here because that is a spiritual death sentence. My heart is grieved with what I have found; and angered too, because it has damaged and is damaging the legacy of Kenneth E. Hagin, Oral Roberts, and other like pioneers who paid a severe price to lead the body of Christ to higher realms of glory. I am open to a relocation should the Lord lead.”


As a father, I am concerned when I hear such things because if this is the pattern and example that large ministries and churches continue setting, I know it’s happening on lesser and smaller levels. It was one of the apostle Paul’s greatest concerns with leaders.


“For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves. Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.”(Acts 20:29-31)


Notice what he said about Timothy compared to everyone else:


“For I have no one like-minded, who will sincerely care for your state. For all seek their own, not the things which are of Christ Jesus. But you know his proven character, that as a son with his father he served with me in the gospel.”(Phil. 2:20-22)


Timothy truly loved and cared for the saints. Everyone else was self-seeking. This had not changed. Do not be fooled. Do not trust anyone who doesn’t walk with a limp. I believe it was AW Tozer who said something like this: “In order for God to make a man He has to break a man.”


My prayer is that these men and leaders whose secret sins have been exposed publicly will use it as an opportunity to be broken in true repentance and remade by the Lord’s unfailing love and mercy. It may take years, but it’s so worth it in the light of this sobering truth and one of the most fearful verses in the Bible:


“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ “ (Matt. 7:21-23)


Selah.


Bert Farias' books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. His recent five-book bundle, written under a fresh anointing, is a forerunner of what the Lord is doing in His church today. His two most recent releases, TONGUES: THE ELEVATION OF A MYSTERY, and ACTS 19: THE BLUEPRINT FOR THE NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH will enrich your prayer life and understanding.

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I hadn't been able to figure out how to post on your site, after you'd made changes (quite a while ago now)--so if this goes through, I will be very thankful! I always look forward to reading your posts, and no, please don't shorten them! Clarifications like this post (and others recently) are so needed! One issue involved, I think--there can be confusion around what is legitimate Holy Spirit power (examples--people being "hit," shaking, or maybe odd manifestations, etc.)--if a leader wielding that kind of power falls, or even shows weird, or strange actions himself, a person (perhaps especially someone new to the charismatic/pentacostal movement) can be "put off"-- and go on (with Satan's help) to doubt, even put do…

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Respondendo a

Hi Penny!


Welcome back!


When God touches people there are different reactions. Religious people always get offended and turned off by almost any manifestation. Can it be fleshly sometimes? Certainly, but if no one is getting hurt or abused, there’s no need to make a fuss about it. I don’t think you could call that blasphemy. Blasphemy would be attributing the work of the Holy Spirit to Satan. That’s dangerous ground.


And yes, sometimes it can demonic work through familiar spirits and hurt young believers. The Bible says that Satan can work lying wonders

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