“If you wish to know God, you must know His Word. If you wish to perceive His power, you must see how He works by His Word. If you wish to know His purpose before it comes to pass, you can only discover it by His Word.” Charles Spurgeon
Sometimes believers are blessed in our pursuit of obedience to God’s commands for discernment with what essentially passes as Berean no-brainers. Unlike those 1st-century Bereans who had carefully and cautiously reviewed Scripture to see if the things that Paul said were so, (Acts 17:11) occasionally it’s not necessary that modern believers have to do such detailed, prayerful Scripture study to discern truth from error. Sometimes we’re blessed with a list.
(Do not, fellow believer, rest assured on the perpetual availability of such free discernment gifts, however. Because the enemy is subtle, and always malicious, his attackers on the Word of God do not always fall so clearly in our lap as this one does. Always, always, ALWAYS we must “abide in my Word!” John 8:31 Do not be lulled into complacency!)
We have been provided a list of high profile “Christian” leaders, writers, pastors, and celebrities who, by their endorsement of a well-known work of heresy are making the equal claim that they do not believe in the authority, sufficiency, and finality of God’s revelation in His Holy Word. They are thereby declaring that the Bible is incomplete, that God failed to say all He intended to say in it, and that there is at least one person on the planet today to whom He is still giving apostolic-like, continuing revelation. This, of course, is false and diabolically motivated.
Justin Peters comments on the dangers of Jesus Calling:
Here, then, is the list of those high-profile Christians who endorse the Montanist heresy that is Sarah Young and her Jesus Calling publications.
* Max Lucado, “Pastor and Bestselling Author”
* Mark Batterson, Pastor and author of another book of heresy, The Circle Maker
Melinda Gates, Wife of a billionaire
Roma Downey, Catholic Hollywood Mystic and Filmmaker
Rev. James Martin, SJ, Jesuit Priest
Shauna Niequist, “Bestselling Author of ‘Bread and Wind’ and ‘Savor’”
O.S. Hawkins, “Author of the Bestselling ‘The Joshua Code’ and ‘The Jesus Code’”
* Dr. Jack Graham, “Pastor, Prestonwood Baptist Church, Dallas, TX”
Sheila Walsh, “Bestselling Author and Speaker”
* Johnny Hunt, “Pastor, First Baptist Church, Woodstock, GA”
Dr. & Mrs. Richard Lee, “Speaker for the Award-Winning ‘There’s Hope In America’ Television Series”
Kathie Lee Gifford, “Host of the ‘Today Show’, Author, Singer, and Actress”
Delilah, “Nationally Syndicated Radio Personality, Author, and Songwriter”
* Robert J. Morgan, “Pastor of The Donelson Fellowship in Nashville, TN”
* Robert Morris, “Founding Senior Pastor of Gateway Church in Dallas, Texas”
Gretchen Carlson, “Television Commentator and Author”
Ainsley Earhardt, “Co-host ‘Fox & Friends First’”
Sean Lowe, “ABC Television’s ‘The Bachelor’ and Author of ‘For The Right Reasons’”
Charlie Daniels, “Award-Winning Country Music Superstar”
Jimmy Wayne, “Country Artist and Bestselling Author of ‘A Walk To Beautiful’”
Diana Hobbs, “President and CEO, ‘Empowering Everyday Women’ Magazine
Katie Farrell, ‘Popular Blogger of ‘Dashing Dish’”
Mike Reed, “Senior Vice President, Salem Media Group’
* Scott Sauls, “Pastor at Christ Presbyterian Church in Nashville”
Janet Hunt, “First Lady, First Baptist Church, Woodstock, GA”
Diane Strack, “Author of ‘New Start For Single Moms’”
Josh Warren, “CEO, Purpose Driven Communications”
* Rev. Bob Fuguay, “Author, Senior Pastor at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, Indianapolis”
Anne Wright, “Wife of Johnson Ferry Baptist Senior Pastor, Bryant Wright”
Emily Ley, “Founder of Emily Ley Lifestyle Brand”
James Robison, “Host of ‘Life Today,’ Founder of Life Outreach International & The Stream Website”
Reba McEntire, “Bestselling Author, Artist and Actress”
Linda Leathers, “Chief Executive Officer, The Next Door”
Dr. Cindy Ryan, “Pastor, Writer, Speaker and Blogger”
Mike Gallagher, “Host of Salem Radio Network’s Mike Gallagher Show”
Kristin Chenoweth, “Emmy and Tony Award-Winning Actress and Singer”
Phil Keaggy, “Guitarist, GMA Dove Award Winner, Grammy Award Nominee”
Lyn Mettler, “Writer and Blogger”
The list is sourced from the promotional website JesusCalling.com.
So, while the enemy has amassed an impressive list of powerhouse, self-monikered “Christian” celebrities and notables to endorse this bestselling attack on the authority and sufficiency of Scripture, he’s also provided the Berean among us a helpful “Beware” sign. These notable names may be scratched off our list of reliable resources since they are eager to defy Scripture’s command regarding the fellowship of light and dark. (2 Corinthians 6:14)
“Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.” Ephesians 5:11
In his letter to the believers in Colossae, Paul gives us an inspiring view of the power of God’s Word as, through it, He brings believers to greater holiness, greater obedience, bearing greater fruit. It is through His Word exclusively that God performs His sanctifying work, as Paul explains from his pastoral heart.
“We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth, just as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf and has made known to us your love in the Spirit.” Colossians 1:3-8
While there is no excuse for any believer – be they a Hollywood starlet, award-winning musician, influential business person, or obscure pew-sitter – to fail to defend God’s Word, what’s worrisome are the pastors and pastors wives who are highlighted in this list. As Paul commended Epaphras to the Colossians, it’s unlikely that these list-making pastors endorsing heresy would receive an apostolic back-slap since they are actively taking “part in the unfruitful works of darkness.”
The pastor is to be the under-shepherd of the local church. A significant part of that task is to ward off the wolves from preying on the flock. Instead, here we see Southern Baptist pastors like Johnny Hunt and Jack Graham openly endorsing known heresy. Other “pastors” are noted from the list who, by their endorsement, do not defend God’s Word as final.
(Excluded from the asterisked-denoted list of pastors is Cindy Ryan, who is not qualified for the office, though she nonetheless claims it, giving further evidence of her own disregard for the Word.)
“Jesus is not calling or equipping through a 21st-century bestseller. Rather, He is calling and teaching by His Spirit through a two to three-thousand year old best seller.” Tom Pennington, Strange Fire Conference (Source)
Be wary of those who are willing to endorse what Scripture does not. Do not forget our Lord’s closing words in His Word … “I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city , which are described in this book.” Revelation 22:18-19
[Contributed by Bud Ahlheim]
H/T – Scott Staffiery
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