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.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Considering the great emphasis and prominence being given to “anointing” in charismanic circles today, I had look at all of the NT references to "anointing" or "being anointed" to see how current beliefs and practices align with scripture.

Consider these questions as you read the list.

Do any of the very FEW New Testament references to believers being anointed resemble the MANY references of anointing being thrown around today? Does it seem like the NT gives as much prominence to “anointing” as the present church is giving?

Do these references even indicate that there is any additional anointing to receive than the one we already have?

Do any of these references indicate that some believers are more anointed than others or that they can have a different anointing than other believers?

Is there any indication at all in the NT that there are different types of anointing that can be received - as is preached by certain prominent people in the “church” today?

Please see my additional comments below the list.


(Mat 6:17) But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face,

(Mar 6:13) And they cast out many demons, and anointed many who were sick with oil, and healed them.

(Mar 14:8) She has done what she could. She has come beforehand to anoint My body for the burying.

(Mar 16:1) And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene and Mary, the mother of James and Salome, had bought sweet spices so that they might come and anoint Him.

(Luk 7:38) And she stood behind Him, weeping at His feet, and she began to wash His feet with tears and wipe them with the hair of her head. And she ardently kissed His feet and anointed them with the ointment.

(Luk 7:46) You did not anoint My head with oil, but this woman has anointed My feet with ointment.

(Joh 9:6) And when He had spoken these things, He spat on the ground and made clay from the spittle. And He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay.

(Joh 9:11) He answered and said, A man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, Go to the pool of Siloam and wash. And going and washing, I received sight.

(Joh 11:2) (And it was that Mary who anointed the Lord with ointment and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.)

(Joh 12:3) Then Mary took a pound of ointment of pure spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the odor of the ointment.

(Jas 5:14) Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.

(Rev 3:18) I counsel you to buy from Me gold purified by fire, so that you may be rich; and white clothing, so that you may be clothed, and so that the shame of your nakedness does not appear. And anoint your eyes with eye salve, so that you may see.

JESUS ANOINTED (4 references)

(Luk 4:18) "The Spirit of the Lord is on Me; because of this He has anointed Me to proclaim the Gospel to the poor. He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim deliverance to the captives, and new sight to the blind, to set at liberty those having been crushed,

(Act 4:27) For truly, against Your holy child Jesus, whom You have anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the nations, and the people of Israel, were gathered together

(Act 10:38) how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, and He went about doing good, and healing all those who were oppressed by the Devil, for God was with Him.

(Heb 1:9) You have loved righteousness and hated iniquity, therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness above Your fellows."


(2Co 1:21) But He confirming us and anointing us with you in Christ is God.

(1Jn 2:20) But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you know all things.

(1Jn 2:27) But the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as His anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true and no lie, and as He has taught you, abide in Him.

The anointing we are able to receive is given by GOD and is not passed on or given haphazardly by any human or angelic agency.
There are two New Testament that seem to contradict that statement but I think it would be wrong to associate them with the actions of some well known preachers today, who present themselves as being a type of “anointing distribution agency”.

The first of these references is:

Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, who, coming down, prayed concerning them in order that they might receive the Holy Spirit. For He had not yet fallen upon any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of Christ Jesus. Then they laid hands upon them, and they received the Holy Spirit.
(Act 8:14-17)

The abusers of “the anointing” could very well use that reference to justify what they are doing. However, I see a vast difference between the practices and claims of the “anointing imparters” and this example from scripture. This clearly states that it is the Holy Spirit, a person of the Godhead that is received. And in naming Him there is an emphasis on HOLINESS. Any resulting experience would therefore be consistent with His holy character.
Contrast this with the impersonal idea of AN anointing or several anointings.

The other reference is:

Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you through prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership. (1Tim. 4:14)

We need to recognise in this verse that Paul is not describing the impartation of an “anointing” – I understand that term (with regard to the believer) is reserved specifically to describe the impartation of the Holy Spirit by God. I would also note that the anointing of prophets, priests and kings with oil was ALWAYS applied to the head and flowed down from the head. Jesus is our head and the anointing can only flow to us from him.

Additionally, it was the eldership that did the laying on of hands. This needs to be read in the context of what Paul also says about the qualifications needed for eldership and contrast them with the “superstar” preachers propagating their own “anointings”. Genuine elders have accountability to those they serve. They are accessible enough to have the fruit of their lives and ministries assessed. They are NOT inaccessible superstar preachers who are separated from their audience by their celebrity status.