Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Todd Bentley’s “revival” in Lakeland Florida has drawn a dividing line in the sand. It’s amazing how ferocious many people become in defending Bentley’s movement. The attitude shown by some of those defenders would be enough to suggest to me that the movement is false. Not that I need any convincing. Knowing that Todd Bentley is involved is sufficient proof in itself. I’ve listened to enough of his “prophecy” and “preaching” to know that he doesn’t speak the word of God.
When he does “quote” scripture it’s used solely to illustrate his own fairytale “prophecies and this carefully chosen references have NEVER been considered in their context. For example, in a message given in Michigan in August 2007, he speaks for almost two hours about a vision of two pillars. The scripture references he gives relate to pillars in God’s temple and are given merely to add a semblance of “legitimacy” to the pillars in his claimed vision. The whole 2 hours revolved around him and his claimed third heaven/open heaven experiences.

Some people insist we wait to see the fruit of Bentley’s current ministry in Florida. I say there’s no need to wait. The root is bad, the tree is bad – therefore whatever fruit that eventuates is certain to be bad – no matter what its outward appearance may be.

One reason that movements like Lakewood, and previously Toronto, can gain so much popularity is because of a desire and expectation for revival. This desire, when linked with an ignorance of scripture and an excessive trust in celebrity preachers, is guaranteed road to deception.

Is the concept of revival (as being demonstrated in Lakewood) consistent with scripture? Or have revival expectations been tainted by human expectations and hopeful wishes?
I don’t see scripture predicting a genuine glorious and popular revival. My understanding is that apostasy will increase (a kind of antichristian revival!) and true believers will be increasingly persecuted. There will be a clearer division between the true and the false; persecution will purify the true church (those less committed to truth will fall away) and that purity will result in a more effective Christian witness to the world.

In Matt 24 Jesus predicts this persecution, but also reveals that despite opposition, the true church will finally fulfill the great commission. And who are the true church? Those who ENDURE. To me this conveys a different kind of glory to the triumphalism usually allied to end time revival thinking.
Does this depict what is glorious in man’s eyes? Or anything like the “revival” scenario that many expect?
Maybe it’s time to see things from God’s perspective and according to His ultimate glorious purpose instead of through man’s corrupted expectations of temporal glory and success.

Mat 24:3-5 And as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the world?
And Jesus answered and said to them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
For many will come in My name, saying, I am Christ, and will deceive many.

Mat 24:9-14 Then they will deliver you up to be afflicted and will kill you. And you will be hated of all nations for My name's sake.
And then many will be offended, and will betray one another, and will hate one another.
And many false prophets will rise and deceive many.
And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many will become cold.
But he who endures to the end, the same shall be kept safe.
And this gospel of the kingdom shall be proclaimed in all the world as a witness to all nations. And then the end shall come.”

Mat 24:24-26 For false Christs and false prophets will arise and show great signs and wonders; so much so that, if it were possible, they would deceive even the elect.
Behold, I have told you beforehand.
Therefore if they shall say to you, Behold, He is in the desert! Do not go out. Behold, He is in the secret rooms! Do not believe it.


Stephen Hardy said...

Greetings from Idaho.

It's so true that when the Bible goes, anything is fair game. Deep down, people just want "self" to feel good. They'll take anything as long as it doesn't involve humbling themselves before the almighty God and following His word.

Those that are Christians will be known by their love. From what I hear of this guy so far, it doesn't sound like that is what he's about...

Tsofah said...

Good summation. I agree.