Through the Narrow: People Honor Me with Their Lips – By Tami Dykes

People honor Me with their lips,  but their heart is far from Me

What do Mark Batterson, Nancy DeMoss, and Priscilla Shirer have in common? 

They have all taught people to draw circles, stand inside and pray for something. Now, I’m not going to rehash all the articles about circle making because I believe the word has gotten out about how very unbiblical Circle Making is, so your welcome. The fad wore off soon after true biblical brothers and sisters started addressing the subject.  

Just to quickly recap for those that may not have ever heard of Circle Making, it’s the practice of many Christians by making a circle on the ground by drawing it in the dirt or using tape or whatever and then stand inside the circle and ask God for something.  

I mentioned above 3 people that have held teaching on Circle Making and I would like to point out how they teach it and why. 

Now, to start off with I want to explain how Mark Batterson was the first in modern days to write about Circle Making. 

I’ll quote from this article titled, “The Origins and Evolution of Prayer Circles”, 

“In his book, Batterson states that it was Gipsy Smith who inspired him to write the book, which is a retelling of the story of Honi the Circle Maker, a Jewish miracle worker. According to the legend, a group of Jews came to Honi and asked him to pray to God to make it rain and end the drought they were experiencing. Honi prayed, but the rain did not come. So Honi drew a circle on the ground and stood within it and prayed again. This time a very light rain started. Honi was not satisfied so he prayed again to God, saying, “This is not that rain that I prayed for! I prayed for rain that will fill the cisterns!” Then it began to rain very, very hard. Again, Honi stood in his circle and prayed to God, saying, “I did not pray for such a hard rain, but a good rain!” and then it began to rain moderately. One of the Israelites then said to Honi, “You entreat God, and He performs your will!” 

“Batterson has taken the pagan ritual of Gipsy Smith, and the legend of Honi the Circle Maker, and thrown in a dash of prosperity gospel to create his various “Circle Maker” books which have sold well throughout the Church, influencing hundreds of churches and Christians. One of the more influential followers of Batterson’s false “Circle Maker” teaching is Anne Graham Lotz, the daughter of evangelist Billy Graham. Lotz is so enamored with Batterson’s teaching that she has threatened to shut down at least one website that called for her to repent of it.” 

So, you’ll see how the newest fad of modern times of Circle Making came from Batterson’s book. 

I have to say though the section where the man named Honi seems to push his own weight around with God is a bit cringe. He speaks to God as if he himself is God’s Boss. For example, the first time Honi prayed and it rained he sounds a bit annoyed that God got it wrong. It says in the write-up that he prayed again to God, saying, “This is not that rain that I prayed for! I prayed for rain that will fill the cisterns!”.  

I just feel as if this is a correction to God as if Honi is saying God messed up. So, the second time Honi prays again… “Then it began to rain very, very hard. Again, Honi stood in his circle and prayed to God, saying, “I did not pray for such a hard rain, but a good rain!” and then it began to rain moderately.” This appears to really frustrate Honi and he again corrects God. I find this very disrespectful for Honi to talk to the Lord in such away. Honi is not calling the shots, God is, so who is he to address a Holy and Righteous God the Creator of all the living in such a way that makes him look like a spoiled child. 

Why would Batterson not see how disturbing this guy’s attitude towards God is?  

So shortly after Mark Batterson’s book, you can see how others start practicing circle making and bringing it into their life.  

Mark says you can draw a circle with chalk 3 times, stands inside, and prays for any situation you are facing. In his book review, it asks “what impossibly big dream is God calling you to draw a prayer circle around?”  

Answer: Nothing! God does not call us to draw circles around any dream or situation we have.  

Take note that there are two different men involved in the making of this very old story that Mark talks about, Honi and Gipsy Smith. Honi is the man that was asked to pray for rain and then Gipsy Smith the man that follows in Honi’s footsteps teach it as a place to pray for revival. 

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Next we have Nancy DeMoss, she’s a woman that picked up Circle Making after it became popular and introduced it into her women conferences. Nancy DeMoss tells the same story on the very first night of her conference about the man named Gypsi Smith that made a circle and stood inside it and prayed. 

An article titled, “Nancy Leigh DeMoss Endorsing Chalk Circles? Mercy” quotes this: “Nancy Leigh DeMoss also spoke at a True Woman Conference in September 2012, and according to an article on the True Woman website, chalk circles were drawn throughout the conference room, and participants of the conference were encouraged to utilize these circles for prayer. And as a clever little marketing tie-in, the participants were sent home after the conference with little goody bags containing, that’s right, chalk, so that they could all go home and perform their own pagan rituals, umm, prayer circles.”  

Quotes from it say, “Nancy (conf): And to step inside that circle and say, “Lord, would You send revival to my family? Would You send revival to my church? Would You send an awakening to our nation, to our world? We desperately need it. But oh, Lord, would You start the revival inside this circle? Let it begin in me. 

Janet: So let me tell you what happened for me as a speaker when I stepped into that circle. I was under very strong conviction. David said, “My sins are ever before me.” That’s what I felt when I was in that circle. I thought, “Lord, I’m not here to teach these women. I’m here to seek Your face.” 

Janet (conf): The point here is Jesus. He’s defying convention. He’s moving deeper into the life of a woman who had some pretty dark secrets, and she’s more thirsty than she can even imagine or knows herself. So Jesus responds. And He says, “Everyone who drinks this water [referring to the well] will be thirsty again. But whoever drinks from the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” What a message! What a Teacher! 

Janet: And standing in this circle I am very aware of my own sins. And what I want more than anything is to walk away from this experience saying, “Lord, I’ve had a wash, rinse, and spin cycle. My sins have been blotted out. I have a fresh start and a new beginning, and I want to seek Him as Nancy was teaching us. Not once every five years but moment by moment every single day. That’s the only way I can keep my ledger short. That’s the only way I can constantly say “Lord, if there’s going to be revival, I want it so desperately to begin with me. Revive my heart. Change me, Lord. Let me be aware of what You’ve done in my life.” 

They are saying being inside the circle “you will feel something“, “you are in the circle to seek God“, “you are asking God to revive you and change you in the circle“. 

Now, none of that sounds bad but what I want to ask everyone is, do we seek God in a circle on the ground or do we seek God in His Word? Are we supposed to be led by our feelings and how we “feel” in the circle or by the Truth of God’s Word? Do we change our hearts by standing inside a circle and asking God to revive or change us or do we change our hearts by reading God’s Word?  

It seems to me, that the focus is on circle making not praying and asking God for something.  

I truly believe the focus solely needs to be on God and His Word. We can pray for revival but don’t make it a ritual or action to get something. 

In a report about the conference is found in this link below: https://www.reviveourhearts.com/podcast/revive-our-hearts/report-true-woman-12/ 

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The next teacher I mentioned was Priscilla Shirer (You can see her in the picture with Nancy DeMoss) and, in the video of Priscilla, she tells her audience she got the teaching from Nancy DeMoss. Priscilla tells the same exact story as Nancy did but Nancy gives the name of the man ‘Gipsy Smith’ and Priscilla doesn’t. She just says he’s a preacher yet Mark tells the story from Honi. So, what I’m trying to say is we see all of them teach circle making just a bit different to their audience but all of them still point to the circles as the focus in order to bring God’s blessing.  

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The only other place I’ve seen “Circle Making” was in witchcraft. 

Witches practiced these rituals for protection or whatever they needed at the time but instead of calling it “Circle Making”, they call it the “Circle of Protection” or “Magic Circle”.  In an article on circles, they explain a little of how witches do this practice. The link below says, “One of the most basic devices used in ancient pagan spirituality is the “circle of protection.” You find it everywhere from the Eastern mystery religions to modern witchcraft. The circle of protection was commonly used in old Gypsy magic, as it was thought to create an impenetrable barrier of protection around those in which it was created. This “magic” circle, spiritual in nature, could be something physical, such as lines drawn in the dirt or sand, or even a sprinkling of salt. But they could also be imaginary.”  

Taken From: https://bereanresearch.org/nancy-leigh-demoss-wolgemuth-mixes-pagan-witchcraft-circle-making-christianity/ 

Just like what Mark, Nancy, and Priscilla teach, we can see that witches also require making a circle on the ground, getting inside it, and doing something to get something like protection. 

You should know Circle Making does NOT come from the Scriptures.  You can look but you will not find God teaching it anywhere in the Scriptures. 

As I researched this subject one of the many articles, I read that I felt makes excellent points was Tim Challies’ article called, “Don’t Pray in Circles “. Simply put he discuss circle making as… Extra-Biblical, Un-Biblical, and Anti-Biblical. 

Oddly enough at the very end of his article, he does make a point to tell his readers that he is only talking about Mark Batterson and not Nancy DeMoss. I found that to be very odd. You can read the article in this link below. 

Now, because Priscilla learned it from Nancy then people believe Priscilla shouldn’t be lumped in with the review that Challies said about Mark either.  

Watch this link below of Priscilla Shirer’s video on circles. https://youtu.be/yEgiyC2Oz_Q 

Now, Priscilla knows Mark Batterson and has even shared a stage with Mark Batterson in conferences as you can see in this photo below.   

Priscilla also enjoys going to listen to Mark Batterson preach as we see with this tweet, she sends out saying: “Show me your prayer life…and I’ll show you your future.” @MarkBatterson teaching us on prayer this AM.”https://twitter.com/PriscillaSh…/status/894961322734919680 

So, I wonder if Priscilla even has a problem with Mark’s teaching of it. I am very troubled by the fact that Tim Challies felt he should make that statement. 

Am I the only one that thinks what they all teach is the same? Believing that circles make a difference in your prayer life to receive answered prayers. Mark believes it makes the impossible happen in your life,  Nancy believes it gets us revivals and awakenings to the World and Janet says she felt something when she stepped inside of it and it changes you. Priscilla talks of what God wants to do through us and to pray in the circle for a revival of our hearts of the things of God.  

But doesn’t this sound like they are practicing man-made traditions? They are all following the lead of a man long ago. God says in Mark 7: 1-13~” Now when the Pharisees gathered to him, with some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem, they saw that some of his disciples ate with hands that were defiled, that is, unwashed. (For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they wash their hands properly, holding to the tradition of the elders, and when they come from the marketplace, they do not eat unless they wash. And there are many other traditions that they observe, such as the washing of cups and pots and copper vessels and dining couches.) And the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, “Why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands?” And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, “‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.” And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition!  For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’  But you say, ‘If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is Corban”’ (that is, given to God) then you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or mother, thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.” 

This is a great example that God shows us about how man loves to have traditions of things passed down form long ago. Even just washing hands or pots is seen as man-made traditions that God doesn’t care for or call all us to practice. God says people honor Him with their lips, but their heart is far from Him. That should cause great concern in the things we practice even something as simple as circle making or hand washing. 

Priscilla has even written a reply to her fans about the photos they have sent to her showing her the circles they made. Many have used very different things to make the circles. In the link below it shows pictures of women inside circles made of socks, chalk, balls, and even kids (the circle was made from the kids laying down, head to toe with other kids while the mom stood inside to pray). Now that seems to be someone that is very sold on the idea otherwise, she’s making light of the practice that Priscilla has taken seriously or she wouldn’t have taught it. 

Now, I wouldn’t say that making a circle is wrong or standing in a circle is a bad thing or even washing hands or a pot are taboo. It’s when they put a lot of focus on them and connect it to God. They are causing people to feel there is an importance to this action.  

Many people miss the danger of this practice because they make it sound so good and biblical. People have said things like, “the circle is a reminder to youto ask God to start by helping you”, sound good, doesn’t it? What about this, “the circle helps people to start by looking at their own lives“, yeah this sounds good too. The circle teaches a good biblical principle on how to pray”, or “The circle thing is only a way of drawing attention to revivals“. How do any of those sound bad? They don’t but when you stop to truly think about what it is, they are teaching you and what they are asking you to do it should cause you to worry, especially when it’s not in Scriptures. 

What I would like to point out is how easy it is to be deceived by false teachers that use slick words or actions to get you to believe in and participate stuff like Circle Making. How have others gotten caught up in it? Well, from their carefully spoken words. In Priscilla’s reply to her followers, she tells them that, “you have made it priority to create a circle in which to stand and pray”.  

Your circle – no matter what it looks like, how long it has stayed intact or who has gotten into it with you – matters!” 

She so subtly speaks to the women that because they make the circles priority and telling the women the circles matter it makes them feel special. Mark, Nancy and Priscilla all know how to convince people to believe in this just by how they talk. They say things that are exciting like do this or that and wonderful things will happen, God is going to do great things through you. This is why they all tell the story about the man that prayed on the outskirts of town and got what he prayed for so why not you?  

If you find yourself in a conference like that then just ask questions about the things they are saying. Do you think circles make a difference in your prayers? Do you believe they matter? Do they make God realize how serious you are? Do we need reminders like that? Are they reminders or just acts of works? If I do this then God will answer kind of belief. After all, isn’t that what Honi did as he prayed for rain?   

I just have to say, NO! We shouldn’t be making circles, or squares, or ovals priority at all. Priscilla Shirer is wrong; God needs to be priority in our lives, not Circle Making. And NO, Priscilla, Circle Making doesn’t matter. What matters is our salvation, the condition of our hearts, and our desire for the Lord and for His Word and Truth, not circles.  

All any of those teachers taught their audience is how to either pray for rain, a dream, a revival, and that it is a priority and that it matters. Where’s the Word of God? Did God teach us to pray this way? How does Circle Making bring us closer to God, or even help us know the Gospel or convict us to repent of our sins? You see, false teachers know how to “talk the talk” because they know how to speak as a seasoned scholar and knows all the right words to use. They can quote scriptures better than most people you know but we need to realize just because a person can quote scriptures doesn’t mean they are biblical because Satan knows the Bible better than anyone on earth and he’s working on us just like he did with Jesus. Satan used scriptures to try and tempt Jesus and he will do it to tempt and deceive us too. This is why we must test, test, test!  

1 Thessalonians 5:21 ESV~ But test everything; hold fast what is good. 

So  we see how Mark, Nancy, and Priscilla say to pray but how does God tell us to pray? 

The Bible says in Luke 5:16 that Jesus often went away to be by Himself and pray. Matthew 6:5-6 says ~“When you pray, go into your room. Close the door and pray to your Father, who can’t be seen. He will reward you. Your Father sees what is done secretly.” Matthew 6:9-13~ “This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread.  And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”’ 

Amen 

Through the Narrow: Priscilla in the Pulpit – Preaching, Polluting, and Purpose by Tami Dykes

Priscilla in the Pulpit

‘Preaching, Polluting, and Purpose’

There are people that argue that Priscilla Shirer doesn’t preach in churches. This video is just one example showing she does. This takes place at a church called Celebration Church. People have said that Priscilla doesn’t knowingly preach to men but in this video, she addresses those listening and calls them brothers and sisters and she also addresses the pastor and his wife in the church so yes, she knows. Let a woman learn quietly with all submissiveness. I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve; and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor.1 Timothy 2:11-14. I’ll be going through this video and pointing out my concerns with several things she teaches. (Video below)


Right from the start, you will hear Priscilla say: “It’s a privilege to serve you today in these Sunday Services.” and “You need to know, every church ain’t got it this good.” She then encourages the Pastor and his wife to “stay in bed on Sunday” sometime and let her serve. Basically saying she will preach the Sunday service to let them stay home from church to relax. I’m a little taken back by this comment….”Stay home from church?” Well, I’d never encourage the practice of staying home from church just to get a break from church. If you’re sick, yes, but not just because you need to get away or need a break from church. Do you really need a break from learning the Word of God as a congregation one day a week? However, in this case, I’d say they should NOT go to that church because that church allows women to preach to the body of believers. Just go find a church where a man is a pastor obeying God’s Word and doesn’t let women come in and preach for them.


Priscilla starts out talking about the pastors and leaders of the church: “So you got shepherds who love you, they love the church, they love the house of God, they love serving you and on top of all that, they are folks of integrity and character and honesty who love each other…” Yeah, the things that make you go hmmm? First of all, let’s read some verses that teach us about the role of shepherds. 1 Peter 5:2 says: “Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them–not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve;” 1 Timothy 6:20-21 says: “Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to your care. Turn away from godless chatter and the opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge, which some have professed and in so doing have departed from the faith.” What should be very obvious to the leaders in every church is it’s not their church and it’s not their flock, it’s Gods. God has entrusted the sheep to the shepherds and if He returns to lost and dying sheep there will be a heavy price to pay so they best be careful. With Priscilla preaching in that church the leaders are guilty of disobedience, neglect, and leading the sheep astray and they will be held accountable for that. I listened to her comment and had to wonder if what she said was true about the leaders of that church? Do the shepherds of that church really love the people? No, not if they have put a counterfeit in the place of a shepherd and pollute the food. God gave specific instructions on how He wanted His sheep treated. If they allow the sheep to get feed by someone that God has already said isn’t to be in charge of the sheep or authority in the church they do not love the people. Do the shepherds love the house of God? Not if they invited the wolves into the house of God. Do the shepherds have integrity and character and honesty? I’d say in this church, no! There is no integrity or no honesty because integrity is being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness as the dictionary describes. What they truly are doing is rebelling and being disobedient by allowing a woman in the church to preach. Also, we should remember the verse we just read before this (1 Peter 5:2) where it describes the shepherd’s character of “not pursuing dishonest gain.” Those church leaders don’t have good character as Priscilla says if this is what they are doing. Priscilla is a popular, well known, woman preacher and more than likely she was invited there to preach and to draw crowds, which also draws money. Those shepherds are not guarding or watching over the flock as God says in His Word because they are not protecting them from danger but instead exposing them to it. The shepherd’s jobs are to feed the sheep, lead the sheep, serve the sheep, protect and care for the sheep. However, in churches that allow women preachers to feed the sheep are neglecting the sheep, losing the sheep, harming the sheep and lying to the sheep. This isn’t loving? For more read here: https://www.gotquestions.org/feed-my-sheep.html “A good shepherd is not known by how well he pets the sheep. A good shepherd is known by how well he protects them and feeds them” ~John MacArthur

Priscilla then says: “He takes one message and He divides it 3, 4 thousand, 5 thousand, different ways that by the time we all leave here we each know we have heard the voice of God.”
Where do the Scriptures say God does this? Does God need to do this and if so, why? This seems a bit confusing because she doesn’t explain what she means here, it’s just not clear. I’ll go ahead and explain how I took it but because I can’t know for sure it’s just a guess that comes from what I know her to believe. My first assumption was that she was suggesting to everyone that the “interpretation” of the message would be different for everyone. The reason I believed this was because she adds, “by the time we all leave here we each know we have heard the voice of God.” Priscilla is well known for talking about hearing God speak to her in audible ways outside the Bible. She believes in personal, new revelations and messages from God, so this was the first thing that came to mind for me. However, if I give her the benefit of the doubt she could have meant the “application” of a passage. This, in a nutshell, means different life situations! Let me explain, when we read any Bible passage to study it we should understand that scripture already has its meaning, already has its interpretation from the author that wrote it and more importantly from the Lord. We will not get different interpretations/meanings from a passage but it can be applied in many different ways only because situations in life can be different. For example, when Priscilla talks about the patience of God in the church service the passage can be applied differently in the life of a married couple struggling than it does in the life of a teenager struggling. When Paul is talking about God’s patience in the Scriptures he explains to Timothy his own experience with God’s patience, and how it applied differently to him, which is his own personal life situation. But again the interpretation is the same, God’s patience is the same for all no matter what the situation is for each individual. So this is why I believe Priscilla should have explained to the congregation what she meant by God dividing up His message 5,000 different ways. Now, if Priscilla did mean the “application” of the passage being divided up to 5,000 different ways then let’s look at how it fits with what she said. She says, “by the time we all leave here we each know we have heard the voice of God.” Do we hear the voice of God through how we apply God’s Word to our own life? No! Do we hear the voice of God in the biblical interpretation of Scriptures? Yes! Hebrews 4:12 “For the word of God is living and active…” 2 Timothy 3:16, Paul states, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.https://www.gotquestions.org/God-breathed.html

“This is the only use in the Bible of the Greek word theopneustos, which means “God-breathed, inspired by God, due to the inspiration of God,” but other scriptural passages support the basic premise of Scripture being inspired by God. The power of the breath of God in divine inspiration pervades Scripture. God-breathed “the breath of life” into Adam (Genesis 2:7), and Jesus “breathed on them and said, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit’” (John 20:22). In 2 Peter 1:21, we are told that “prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” Here we see the truths of Scripture described as coming directly from God, not from the will of the writers He used to record them.” Scripture is God’s voice; it is how God speaks to us. Our application is not the voice of God; it’s just our personal experience. So, her comment doesn’t fit with the idea of “applying” God’s message 5,000 different ways because that is not how we hear the voice of God. Her comment fits more with her belief of hearing God’s voice in different revelations and interpretations outside the Bible. Priscilla is teaching very vaguely here and that’s careless when it comes to the Word and standing in authority in a church. Again, I cannot know for sure what she is talking about here but it makes no sense. I just wanted to point out the different meanings and I wanted to show how careless she is being. She says all this so confidently that people won’t question it, at least, not unless they can stop and think about her statement word for word and in most cases no one does. It sounds as though she has a great amount of knowledge when she talks, which fits with what we read in the scriptures above in 1 Timothy 6:20-21 that says a true shepherd should “turn away from opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge”. Also, notice she says: “when God gives a message He takes that one message and divides it up”. Taking this back to Scriptures, we see God tells us that “WE” are the ones that need to divide it…to “RIGHTLY divide the Word”…which means rightly handle the Word. Nothing is said about God dividing it thousands of ways. The following translations show the example of the word “divide”.

2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV) ~ Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

2 Timothy 2:15(ESV)~Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handlingthe word of truth.


Next problem, Priscilla prays and says: “Lord Jesus thank you so much for the privilege that I have today under the leadership of an incredible church to serve Your people. I pray now that you would do what only you can. That is to take one simple little message, divide it up however many ways you need to so that everybody hears from you. Expecting Lord, that the words from my mouth and meditation of my heart would be accepted.”
Does anyone else see anything wrong with this prayer? Think about what she is saying, “Lord Jesus, thank you so much for the “privilege” that I have today “under the leadership” of an incredible “church“? To a young baby Christian, they may hear these words and think it sounds fine. I know I would have. This is why we study and hopefully, as we grow in God’s Word we are able to discern things and if something isn’t right, red flags should start popping up all over the place. So, I think it’s clear that the Lord did not give her that “privilege”! God speaks against women preaching in a church or being an authority over men biblically as stated in 1 Timothy 2:11-15. Priscilla “thanks the Lord” for letting her serve His people…. but she should know God has already said how she is “to serve” God’s people, and it’s not in place of a pastor or as a religious leader to a body of believers anywhere. This link goes in more detail on what God thinks of women preachers. https://www.gty.org/library/sermons-library/81-56/does-the-bible-permit-a-woman-to-preach


She then says: “Expecting Lord, that the words from my mouth and meditation of my heart would be accepted.”
Does she really expect that the Lord will accept her words and heart in this? How can He when she is doing exactly what God has forbidden her to do? He can’t accept something that He, Himself, has said is wrong. Now, I know she preaches very well and says many things in this video that is true and says many good things I agree with; such as God’s love endures forever, God is patient, His grace is sufficient for us, and God is slow to anger and great in power. She preaches on 1 Timothy 1:16 on how Paul talks about the patience of God and His mercy. The whole message is about God’s patience and how the Holy Spirit sanctifies us. She also talks of how the history of the Bible is like the enemy and God playing chess together. It’s all very intriguing. Nonetheless, just let me bring everyone back to reality for a bit because although her story sounds intriguing and entertaining at best, God and Satan do not play together! Let’s just get that out of the way right now, and they do not have equal minds to where Satan can trick God or “make a move” to outwit God, ever. God was never put in a place where He had to figure out how to win against Satan. This should be good news for everyone to know if they didn’t know this, it is for me. However, just because she tells good stories and says some true things doesn’t mean it’s ok for her to preach in spiritual authority in a church and it doesn’t make what she teaches ok. She is preaching truth along with untruths! She’s already in rebellion by preaching as the authority of a church. I know I keep repeating the same thing but people are so quick to forget what she is doing just because they love her words and storytelling even though they are being polluted by what she teaches.


Then she tells us this: “…And can I tell you that I feel similarly I guess the way Paul does, in that I can’t believe that God might use me for His glory and I don’t even mean in this setting? I enjoy ministry, I love it, it’s my privilege to serve the body of Christ but I don’t even mean as much here. When I say I can’t believe God would use me, I think mostly about the smaller sphere of influence that God has me in. For example: married to a man that God has given me and has given me to him and my goal as his wife is to encourage and to serve this man so that one day when Jerry sees Jesus face to face he gets to hear Jesus say, “Well done”. My job is to help make sure that my man hears a “Well done”. I can’t believe God would entrust me with that.” I have to disagree with her statement here. I nearly missed this one because she speaks so fast and confident that I didn’t catch it the first time I watched this. It wasn’t until I listen to the video again to make sure I wrote things out correctly. When I heard her say this I was like, wait a minute, what did she just say? I was shocked because she really believes God entrusted her with making sure her husband hears “well done” from Jesus. Let me just say this; she’s not that powerful! It’s not up to her! She can’t make sure that her man hears a “Well done” from Jesus. Not only that but she thinks this is a good thing? Yikes! I know I wouldn’t want that responsibility on my shoulders. No thanks, I don’t want to be responsible for my husband’s judgment day. Just because God gave him to her does not mean she is responsible for her husband in that way. It is no one else’s responsibility to make sure others hear those words, but it is the individual’s own heart and fruits that would be the reason for hearing the words, “Well done good and faithful servant.” I would also add that we are responsible to encourage others with the truth of the Gospel and not stumble them.


Priscilla goes on to say:
“We don’t even recognize that God has strategically placed us in that location to be used for His glory. So he (the enemy) wants you to think you’re in that neighborhood by chance. Um-no, He (God) has positioned you between those two neighbors for His Glory. he wants you to think you just happened to get that job cause that’s just the job you have now, He put you in that office for his Glory. The location that you are in my friend is the exact place He has patiently placed you, to be used for His Glory.”

Priscilla is half right when she says this. The Scriptures do say in Proverbs 16:9 “The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps”. Ephesians 1:11 “In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will.” Nothing happens to us that is outside of God’s sovereign will because it is God that is the Sovereign Ruler of the universe who ordains all that happens. Although, let me show you why this needs to be explained deeper and why I have a problem with her statement here. When God’s will is for something to happen then it defiantly happens. When God’s will was to create the world, it happened. God’s will was to also permit sin or unpleasant things to happen that He takes no pleasure in. When someone freely chooses to go against God they are in rebellion, God did not place them in a situation that would make them sin or cause them to rebel. They are guilty of their rebellion because they made the choice and they will be punished. God does not create or cause anyone to sin.

From grace church link: https://www.gracechurch.org/about/distinctives/sovereignty-of-god “What about sin? God is not the author of sin, but He certainly allowed it; it is integral to His eternal decree. God has a purpose for allowing it. He cannot be blamed for evil or tainted by its existence (1 Sam. 2:2: “There is no one holy like the Lord.”). But He certainly wasn’t caught off-guard or standing helpless to stop it when sin entered the universe. We do not know His purpose for allowing sin. Clearly, in the general sense, He allowed sin in order to display His glory—attributes that would not be revealed apart from evil—mercy, grace, compassion, forgiveness, and salvation. And God sometimes uses evil to accomplish good (Gen. 45:7–8; 50:20; Rom. 8:28). How can these things be? Scripture does not answer all the questions, but it does teach that God is utterly sovereign, perfectly holy, and absolutely just.”

Below taken from: https://www.gty.org/library/sermons-library/80-310/taking-the-mystery-out-of-knowing-gods-will

“Scripture affirms both divine sovereignty and human responsibility. We must accept both sides of the truth, though we may not understand how they correspond to one another. People are responsible for what they do with the gospel—or with whatever light they have (Rom. 2:19-20) so that punishment is just if they reject the light. And those who reject do so voluntarily. Jesus lamented, “You are unwilling to come to Me, that you may have life” (John 5:40). He told unbelievers, “Unless you believe that I am [God], you shall die in your sins” (John 8:24). In John 6, our Lord combined both divine sovereignty and human responsibility when He said, “All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out” (v. 37) “Nothing that I do or don’t do will alter the end of the plan, but everything I do and everything you do will have an effect on our blessing, our joy, our obedience, our usefulness now and forever. So it’s important to me to know God’s will. I want to do it, I don’t want to be in the dark. ”- John MacArthur

This from https://www.gotquestions.org/Gods-will.html.“We are obligated to obey God’s revealed or preceptive will; however, we have the ability to disobey. God’s revealed will for Adam and Eve was to be fruitful and multiply, tend the garden, subdue the earth, and not eat of a certain tree (Genesis 1–2). Unfortunately, they rebelled against God’s revealed will (Genesis 3). The consequences they suffered show that they could not excuse their sin. Neither can we claim that our sin simply fulfills God’s sovereign will, as if that absolves us from guilt. It was God’s will that Jesus suffer and die, but those responsible for His death were still held accountable (Mark 14:21).” So my problem with her statement here is although she’s right about God being in control and doing His will for His Glory, at the same time, she is standing in rebellion against God by standing in a church preaching Scriptures. God is clear that women are not to be doing this. When she says, “the location that you are in my friend is the exact place He has patiently placed you, to be used for His Glory,” does this mean we are supposed to believe God put “HER” in the place she is in, a pastoral role, an authority in the church, for God’s Glory? I mean seriously look at where she is and what she’s doing. Does that glorify God? How can it? She is contradicting and compromising God’s Word. She is not being obedient; she is being defiant and therefore insulting God’s authority. God did not place her in the lead role as a pastor or as a religious leader in the gathering body of believers. She placed herself there, her husband placed her there. Any church leader that has allowed her to preach in their church, to their congregation, has placed her there. To be under God’s authority means we follow His law. Most people that are there listening to Priscilla are not educated in God’s Word or they wouldn’t be there. However, God does use bad situations and disobedient people and evil to accomplish good for His own glory. Ex: Joseph, “you meant evil…but God meant it for good (Genesis 50:20)”, God used Judas a man that betrayed Jesus for money (Luke 22). Maybe there are people there newly saved and just don’t know yet, maybe someone is in that church listening to Priscilla that is growing and being tested as said in these following verses. Deuteronomy 8:2 “Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the wilderness these forty years, to humble and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands.”

Deuteronomy 13:1-3 “If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder, and the sign or wonder that he tells you comes to pass, and if he says, ‘Let us go after other gods,’ which you have not known, ‘and let us serve them,’ you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams. For the Lord your God is testing you, to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.”As a saved Christian I use to sit and read books and listen to many false teachers I thought were biblically sound. I was young in the faith and didn’t know about what God said about women teaching in the churches yet. So I wasn’t passing any test if it was given me but as I continued to read God’s Word and heeded the warnings from other discerning Christians and woke up to the dangers. Once I understood the seriousness of it I stopped following them and tested everything from then on out. That is how God worked and drew me out of false teachings. God can use any situation to draw His children and if it’s a bad situation or a false religion He can still work in that. Someone that is truly saved and honestly seeking truth will continue to seek and hunger for God’s Truth. They will not stay in a false religion but eventually be drawn out. His Word will be held up through reading it or through someone pointing Scriptures out. His Word will cause those red flags to pop up against that false teaching. Now, not all will be drawn out as we know. God says that many will take the wide path to destruction (Matthew 7:13-14) and not be saved, they will hunger for the ear-tickling and not hunger for His Word.


At the end of the video, she prays and talks of how many others are watching online and calls them “brothers and sisters”. She knows she is preaching to a co-ed audience of believers or she wouldn’t say that. We know that Christians don’t call unbelievers ‘brothers and sisters’ but we call those that are true believers in Christ ‘brothers and sisters’ so this means that she believes that the people listening and attending are a “gathering body of believers” which means she is teaching the Word of God to men and women both that are presumed to be believers in the church. It’s my prayer that this helps others learn how important it is to test all things as Scriptures says.

(https://youtu.be/kfBzcvydHaM)


Above is an article written by Tami Dykes, Gina and Tami write Through the Narrow here at Tulips & Honey Hub. They’ll be posting articles every other Tuesday. Both are published authors, and you can find Tami’s book here, and Gina’s book here. We’re blessed to have them apart of our team, and pray their writing will be as edifying to you as it is to us. – Lauren Hereford

Is Joyce Meyer’s Theology Heretical? We Talk to Two Prior Employees: Paul & Emily Massey

Is Joyce Meyer’s Theology Heretical?

With Paul & Emily Massey

Not long ago, dear ones, I created a new social media page on Facebook. I had one from years ago, but was locked out, so ended up started over. I immediately connected with family and friends, and found my feed a little concerning. I wanted to see believers in my feed praising God, teaching and edifying one another, so I went to some Biblically solid groups and began ‘friending’ people. One of those was Emily Massey, a dear sister-in-Christ who I ended up talking with via private message. After learning that she and her husband had worked for Joyce Meyer’s I invited them onto our program to discuss why they left and their current outreach to those deceived by her and others teaching like her. She, and her husband Paul, were gracious enough to give us their time and the fruit of that conversation can be heard or seen by today’s episode.

I was encouraged by their heart for those who are being deceived by Meyers and other false teachers. They once worked for her, and enjoyed her teaching, and they have no personal vendetta against her. Their hearts desire is to see the truth proclaimed, the lost saved, and the deceived rescued. We hope that this episode will be helpful for anyone who is unsure about Meyer’s teaching. Please join us in praying for the Massey’s as they continue their ministry. All the information you may need to connect with the Massey’s can be found below where you can also see a time stamped outline, that we hope will be helpful for anyone who wants to skip through the episode to certain points. Don’t miss the blooper reel, waiting as ever, at the end like a cherry on top! You can, of course, listen across all major podcasting platforms such as PodbeaniTunesSpotifyGoogle PlayiHeart RadioStitcher, and in video form (eventually) on Youtube. We also now have a Patreon page, which you can find here https://www.patreon.com/Tulipshoneyhub. As always, beloved brethren, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

  1. Testimony

a. Emily TS 00:01:55

b. Paul TS 00:06:05 

  1. How can pastors/elders/congregations feed a starving believer who has been without discipleship? TS 00:09:05
    • What should the sheep do once they realize they are not being fed Biblical doctrine?
  2. How did y’all meet and get married, and did that change how you thought about theology? TS 00:13:40
  3. When and how did you both end up working for Joyce Meyers? TS 00:17:35
  4. How many volunteers worked there? TS 00:21:20
    • How many employees?
  5. Are you seeing any red flags while you’re working there? TS 00:22:00
  6. Did the recent Benny Hinn apology shake anyone up? TS 00:27:35
  7. Jesus Culture teamed up with Joyce Meyer? TS 00:28:15
    • Who else? 
    • Bands? 
    • Artists?
    • Any other colleges like CFNI?
  8. What would you say to a believer who finds themselves in a church that is compromising, and locking arms with false teachers? TS 00:34:00
  9. 10.Becca went to a Joyce Meyer conference in Phoenix TS 00:36:00
    • Someone punched one of the ushers and had to make announcement. 
      • Does that happen often?
      • Most people coming to these events are the unsaved or deceived…
      • She’s being ministry for over 33+ years…I’m about to turn 33 and this is heartbreaking.
        • She is unrepentant 
  10. 11.What was the theological issues that caused you to leave? TS 00:41:00
    • Sermon, scripture, book? 
  11. 12. What would you say to Joyce Meyer’s if you were able to sit down with her? TS 00:45:45
  12. 13. How did your families respond? TS 01:01:00
  13. 14. What is the Gospel? TS 01:05:25
  14. 15. Joyce Meyer last year stated she “out of balance.” In regard to prosperity gospel? TS 01:07:40

Shenanigans TS 01:16:00

  • Pineapple Pizza
  • Lauren Question 
  • Becca Question

You can find more information about our guests, Paul and Emily Massey, at their website here, or connect with them on social media; Twitter, here and here, Instagram here and Facebook here.

If you’d like more information about Tulips & Honey Hub please visit our website: 5Solas.Online 

You can shop the gals store at: inktale.com/tulipshoneyhub 

The Tulips and Honey blog can be found at: biblicalbeginnings.wordpress.com 

We also now have a Patreon page, which you can find here: https://www.patreon.com/Tulipshoneyhub

Throwback Thursday: Then Who Spoke to Me?

Back in October of 2018 I addressed the subject of “hearing from God”. I don’t have any updates to add, and I hope this is a blessing to anyone who missed the original, which you can find here.

Hello dear friends, I hope you are all doing well today! Recently I saw a post with a sentence which was quoted as written by – God. It wasn’t a Bible verse, so it was most certainly not God speaking to us. It was, instead, an inspirational statement either from her mind, or someone else’s. It reminded me of a Twisted Tuesday I had begun writing a while back, this one here, of course! The cannon is closed, God has spoken to us through His prophets and eventually His Son, no new revelation will be given. No new revelation is needed. We know this Scripturally, as my media between paragraphs will show, but if you want a helpful article here is one from GTY. It still begs the question, with so many professing Christians today claiming to hear from God, just who is speaking to them?

I couldn’t find a verse that folks use to give Scriptural credence to what they’re receiving actually coming from God. It seems perhaps they are either misunderstanding Scripture, or ignoring it. I think for many they’re actually referring to the Holy Spirit placing something on their hearts, guiding or leading them one way or another. That’s totally different than claiming to speak for God, or that God speaks through you. It’s also highly likely that, since it’s not being taught from our pulpits today, many believers do not understand that the Bible is God speaking through men by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. This means if God is still speaking in that way, we need to open the cannon and start adding to it. That’s a dangerous, and sinful, idea which we need to stand against strongly. So many of the cults we see today began with someone adding to Gods Word, whether through traditions or ‘revelations’ given to one person. It always accompanies an abandonment of salvation through grace alone, and faith in Christ alone. This is why it’s important we make clear that God is not giving new revelation today.

Before I was saved I thought God was always speaking to me. I constantly had a word, had a feeling, had a revelation, none of which were Biblical. I didn’t even understand the Bible, honestly, I read it and it went in one ear and out the other. So what was I hearing? Most of the time it was my conscious, which has even graciously been given to the lost to keep them from the wickedness our hearts are truly capable of. We see many so callous that they’ve shut down that conscious, and are thus able to commit horrible atrocities. Many other things influence our minds, like the entertainment we watch or listen to. Our friends and family can suggest things which lead to thoughts later on down the road. All this leads up to the need to test every thought against Scripture before acting on it. Somethings aren’t covered in the Word, like jobs and the like. It’s a great idea to take your thoughts to prayer, and to other believers that have been in the faith longer.

The most important thing to remember, beloved ones, is that God is not going to audibly speak today. As brother Justin Peters says “If you want to hear from God read your Bible. If you want to hear from Him audibly, read it out loud.” We should never put words in Gods mouth, not even to be inspiring or encouraging. Gods Word is the Bible, adding to it is as dangerous as taking away from it. If you’re hearing audible voices claiming to be God you need to go to your Pastor and Elders. Ask for prayer, and stay in prayer yourself. Study doctrine, friends, doctrine is a weapon against heretical and nonBiblical beliefs and attitudes. As always, dear brethren, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.

Through the Narrow – Ann Voskamp Seductive Romanticism: By Tami Dykes

I know Ann Voskamp and her books is a sensitive subject with many because so many still enjoy her books regardless of her unbiblical teaching and I see her quotes being shared which some sound fine but sharing her quotes do point people to her books and studies and her odd beliefs and that is truly concerning. Ann writes and teaches mysticism, pantheism, Romanticism, sensuality, and new revelations. She’s very seductive in her speech and ideas about God and actually says God wants this with us too. Really? She’s going to seriously say this about God?
Christians, there is a huge difference between having a respectful, close relationship with God that is within biblical teachings vs. a sensual intimate relationship with God that makes most people cringe. We will all be held accountable for what we teach, practice and say about God. For her to speak of God with such a fleshy desire that expresses such human sensuality and even proclaim that this is how God wants to be with us is in great error and dishonoring to Him. “For speaking out arrogant words of vanity they entice by fleshly desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error,” (2Peter 2:18).
I’ve made my thoughts known on facebook before about Ann Voskamp. It never took long to receive replies from others of how wrong I was for calling Voskamp out as a false teacher. They were quick to tell me I was taking Voskamps words out of context and being unchristian for doing that. Quickly following that up with how wonderful, humble and gifted Voskamp is and how she always quotes scriptures in her books.
How interesting it was to me that although women tell me that I’m taking Voskamp’s words out of contexts and committing some kind of crime against her yet not once did they see or understand how badly Voskamp has taken Gods Word out of context and how very unchristian that is for her to do. I guess we can offend the Lord and twist His Holy, perfect and complete Word in such a perverted way, yet we don’t dare offend others by calling out the errors of their beloved authors or ministers?
I had a lady say to me, “How can you speak against her like that because she’s done some wonderful things in the world” and they list off some very noble, kind works that Ann Voskamp has done. They continue telling me that Voskamp is a holy woman and instrumental in raising a huge amount of money for a women’s hospital.
Yeah, I know, I don’t doubt Ann has done some good things in her life and helped others in their trials, that’s a wonderful thing for her to do and I’m sure Ann has written many good books but that means nothing if she teaches a different idea of God, changes His character and perverts a relationship with Him. It means nothing if a “nice person” that does “good things” teaches against the Scriptures. It means nothing if your good works are over and above God’s law. I’d rather stand before a Holy God and answer for expressing my disgust for Ann Voskamp’s book then have to answer for the fact that I saw danger in what she teaches and didn’t warn others about it. I want no one’s blood on my hands (Ezekiel 3:17-18). I also know that I wouldn’t want to be Ann Voskamp or any woman that condones such sensual teachings about God when they stand before Him on judgment day and have to answer for putting words in Gods mouth, defiling His name and shaming His character in such a perverted way. Matthew 15:18–19~ But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.https://www.gotquestions.org/Bible-defilement.html
God tells us not to look at another with lust or we will have committed adultery in our hearts. The crime is in our hearts even though we do not do the sexual act of it. So Voskamp is mentally steering women to think of God like this and it can cause them to commit that crime in their hearts towards God. Christians should be so upset about how Voskamp talks about God but instead, her followers correct those of us that are offended by her.
The abuse that Voskamp displays towards our Lord is repulsive and is no different than her using the Lord’s name in vain as said in Exodus 20:7. Many Christians don’t understand that it’s more than just using His name as a cuss word. We need to understand that using His name in vain is done in ways that misrepresent Him or is disrespectful and dishonoring to Him. If we claim to the world that we are Christians that serve a Holy, Righteous, Glorious God yet behave in a way that dishonors Him then we have used His name in vain.
Got Questions explains it this way: “If we profess to be Christians, but act, think, and speak in a worldly or profane manner, we take His name in vain. When we misrepresent Christ, either intentionally or through ignorance of the Christian faith as proclaimed in Scripture, we take the Lord’s name in vain. When we say we love Him, but do not do what He commands (Luke 6:46), we take His name in vain and are possibly identifying ourselves to be among those to whom Christ will say, “I never knew you. Away from me” in the Day of Judgment (Matthew 7:21-23).” https://www.gotquestions.org/Lords-name-vain.html
Even the angels were extremely careful to show reverence and respect in the presence of God, as said in Isaiah 6:5 and Exodus 3:4-5.
From Got Questions: “Isaiah was a firsthand witness of God’s holiness in his vision described in Isaiah 6. Even though Isaiah was a prophet of God and a righteous man, his reaction to the vision of God’s holiness was to be aware of his own sinfulness and to despair for his life (Isaiah 6:5). Even the angels in God’s presence, those who were crying, “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty,” covered their faces and feet with four of their six wings. Covering the face and feet no doubt denotes the reverence and awe-inspired by the immediate presence of God (Exodus 3:4–5). The seraphim stood covered, as if concealing themselves as much as possible, in recognition of their unworthiness in the presence of the Holy One. And if the pure and holy seraphim exhibit such reverence in the presence of the Lord, with what profound awe should we, polluted and sinful creatures, presume to draw near to Him! The reverence shown to God by the angels should remind us of our own presumption when we rush thoughtlessly and irreverently into His presence, as we often do because we do not understand His holiness.” https://www.gotquestions.org/holy-holy-holy.html
The heavenly angel’s nature is to serve and glorify the Lord humbly and they are far more pure than us yet they cover themselves because they know they are unworthy.
Shockingly Ann thinks of God, the maker of heaven and earth, with erotic thoughts and romanticizes her relationship with Him and teaches that this is Christian and how God Himself behaves.
When you put words together with words like romance, lover, embrace, climax, cohabit and to make love…..then what do you think Ann Voskamp is talking about? She’s not talking about just knowing God through the Word. Where does she think people’s minds are gonna go? She is pointing out that she wants more of a relationship than just being a child of God, she wants to be something else with Him entirely in a mental, spiritual and yes, sexual way, that should make the readers cringe. She teaches others to do the same probably so she feels validated in how she thinks of Him and worships Him.
GotQuestions explains panentheism as “essentially a combination of theism (God is the Supreme Being) and pantheism (God is everything)”. https://www.gotquestions.org/panentheism.html
Biblically we know God is omnipresent as said in scriptures (Psalm 139:7-12). God is everywhere but although God is everywhere Does not mean God is found “IN” everything.
Voskamp shares how she focuses her worship of God on objects such as stones, bubbles, a bed, and even the moon. The example of the moon as holy or bubbles as Holy then people will be looking for Holy experiences with God in every object. She writes about doing dishes and she talks about the light in the soap bubbles and then says, “This is where God is” (69). She describes a bubble trembling, then states the space is holy, “The God in it”. Although creation reminds us that there is indeed a Creator, we should understand that it is not a dwelling place for the Creator. It’s not good to focus your worship for God on an object such as a bed, or on a building of stones or bubbles just because you think God is in it. Acts 17:24 “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands.” Worshiping a bubble and saying that God is found in the bubble and the space is Holy is not biblical. She is idolizing it! It’s making an object an idol. Then she writes she finds God in the moon and so she puts all her focus on the moon and then says she finds Salvation in the moon. Ann: “Has His love lured me out here to really save me? I sit up in the wheat stubble, drawn. That He would care to save. Moon face glows. We are head to head. I am bare; He is bare. All Eye sees me” (Voskamp: 115).

Bob DeWaay wrote on Ann Voskamp and it is very thorough. Bob says, “The moon cannot resolve the problem of sinners’ lost condition, but the Son will if they repent” (Acts 17:30, 31).https://www.cicministry.org/commentary/issue120.htm
Voskamp is skilled at describing things in terms of romanticism is enhanced by her very expressive words. Her romantic terminology creates such a wide range of emotions and feelings that causes the reader to feel how she wants them to feel. She describes a very romantic situation that should only be found with their husbands but instead is focused on God instead. Ann says: “The full life, the one spilling joy and peace, happens only as I come to trust the caress of the Lover, Lover who never burdens His children with shame or self-condemnation but keeps stroking the fears with gentle grace “(Voskamp: 146). Romanticism puts focus on our very human feelings and what we experience and completely ignores God’s truth.
Below are some of her romantic terminology excerpts where Voskamp describes in her book romantic encounters with God.
“I fly to Paris and discover how to make love to God.” (One Thousand Gifts, p 201)
“I run my hand along the beams over my loft bed, wood hewn by a hand several hundred years ago. I can hear Him. He’s calling for a response; He’s calling for oneness. Communion (Voskamp: 211).
“I remember this feeling. The way my apron billowed in the running, the light, the air. The harvest moon. I remember. The yearning. To merge with Beauty Himself. But here . . .Now? Really?. . I am not at all certain that I want consummation.” ..And who wouldn’t cower at the invitation to communion with limitless Holiness Himself?” (One Thousand Gifts, p 211)
“This invitation to have communion with Love—is this the edge of the mystery Paul speaks of? “‘A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.’ This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one” (Ephesians 5:31-32). The two, Christ and the church, becoming one flesh—the mystery of that romance. Breath falling on face, Spirit touching spirit, the long embrace, the entering in and being within—this is what God seeks? With each of us?” (One Thousand Gifts, pp 212-213)
“God makes love with grace upon grace, every moment a making of His love for us. And He invites the turning over of the hand, the opening and saying Yes with thanks. Then God lays down all of His fullness into all the emptiness. I am in Him. He is in me. I embrace God in the moment. I give Him thanks, and I bless God and we meet and couldn’t I make love to God, making every moment love for Him? To know Him the way Adam knew Eve. Spirit skin to spirit skin.” (One Thousand Gifts, pp 216-217)
Looking at her use of words, we have determined what she really means and if you have doubt look up each word to see the term.
God is called our Father… Our Father and we are His children not His intimate partner. We shouldn’t think that way or worship that way to our Father. I can’t help but think how wrong it sounds to even teach our children this kind of idea of God either. Also, what husband is alright with their wife worshiping like that? Is it okay for our husbands to think of God the Father in this way? One man said, “Where does that way of thinking put us men”? We shouldn’t think of Him like that at all, it’s just wrong. If this is pleasing to God then why doesn’t He tell us to worship like this in Scriptures? What about our fear of God? Where is her fear of God and reverence for Him and His Word?
God’s way of love is not the way Ann describes in her book that is all about emotions and flesh and objects. God’s love is Agape love.
From gotquestions it is explained like this; “The Greek word agape is often translated “love” in the New Testament. How is “agape love” different from other types of love? The essence of agape love is self-sacrifice. Unlike our English word “love,” agape is not used in the Bible to refer to romantic or sexual love. Nor does it refer to close friendship or brotherly love, for which the Greek word philia is used. Agape is love which is of and from God, whose very nature is love itself. The apostle John affirms this in 1 John 4:8: “God is love.” God does not merely love; He is love itself. Everything God does flows from His love. But it is important to remember that God’s love is not a sappy, sentimental love such as we often hear portrayed. God loves because that is His nature and the expression of His being. He loves the unlovable and the unlovely (us!), not because we deserve to be loved, but because it is His nature to love us, and He must be true to His nature and character. God’s love is displayed most clearly at the cross, where Christ died for the unworthy creatures who were “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1), not because we did anything to deserve it, “but God commends His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). The object of God’s agape love never does anything to merit His love. We are the undeserving recipients upon whom He lavishes that love. His love was demonstrated when He sent His Son into the world to “seek and save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10) and to provide eternal life to those He sought and saved. He paid the ultimate sacrifice for those He loves.”
God’s love is expressed not in intimate ways like Ann portrays but in the death of His Son. We need to control our imaginations and thoughts. As we read in verse, 2 Corinthians 10:5 ~Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. 2 Peter 2:2 says, “And many will follow their sensuality and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed.”
John MacArthur says it best here, “We err greatly if we think of intimacy with Christ as some lofty level of mysterious, feelings-based communion with the Divine–as if it involved some knowledge of God that goes beyond what Scripture has revealed. That idea is the very heart of the gnostic heresy. It has nothing in common with true Christianity.”
“If we want God to delight in our worship, we must think rightly about Him. The very essence of idolatry consists in wrong thoughts about God. And conversely, true knowledge of God means knowing Him as He is revealed in Scriptures”.
A pastor I talked to just shook his head as we discussed the book and he said he didn’t understand how anyone could say it’s a good book? The pastor’s wife was very shocked that so many women support Ann Voskamp and she couldn’t believe that some people think it’s biblical to worship God in such a way when it’s not. One preacher said he read excerpts from her book but not the entire thing and like me, have seen enough of it to know that it is not good.

By Tami Dykes

 


Through The Narrow is written by Tami Dykes and Gina Cook, both are published authors. You can find Tami’s book here, and Gina’s book here.


Name That Heretic!

Tulips & Honey are having a special contest on Instagram and Facebook. You can hear more about it on the video I’ve linked below. To follow us on Instagram you can find me here and Becca here. And Facebook you can find me here and our Facebook page here. If you haven’t yet, follow us on social media to be apart of this contest.

Through the Narrow: Steven Furtick’s Heretical Views on Satan & Sovereignty – By Tami & Gina

Why do some preachers preach like this in this video?
Steven tells everyone that the devil knows more about your destiny than you do.
Christians, you should know the devil doesn’t know our future!

The devil isn’t all-knowing like God. Only God knows our future, only God is all-knowing.

Then Steven says, “Can I preach this like God gave it to me, God said some of you are breaking generational curses and you don’t even know it.”

Now Steven is claiming direct personal messages from God.

Then Steven says, “The devil ties us up?”
What does he mean by that? How does the devil do that?
Steven says, “The devil wouldn’t have tied you up if he wasn’t afraid of what would happen if you got loose.”
Ok, first…the Devil is NOT afraid of us or what we will do. The Devil is afraid of God and what He will do, not us. Once again, it’s NOT about us, it’s about God. God is to be feared. Satan can’t just tie us up anytime he wants. However, if Satan could tie us up, then we should know it’s God’s Will anyway and God’s Will is perfect and there is a reason it was allowed. The devil can’t do anything too God’s believers without first having to get God’s permission. Just like in Job. The devil couldn’t do anything to Job till God gave the ok (and it was for God’s Glory it was done at all). The devil was even limited in ‘what’ he could do as shown in these verses below. In the first conversations about Job, God gives Satan strict instructions not to “hurt” Job. In the second conversation about Job, God allowed Satan to hurt Job with physical pain but told Satan he was not to “kill” Job. God was in full control and allowed the testing for a reason.
The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.”
Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.
Job 1:12
Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Skin for skin! All that a man has he will give for his life. But stretch out your hand and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse you to your face.” And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, he is in your hand; only spare his life.”
Job 2:4-6
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Steven Furtick makes it sound like we are breaking strongholds all on our own, not giving any credit to God’s authority, power or His Word. Instead, Steven points to how ‘we’ are the powerful ones and that’s why Satan wants to tie ‘us’ up. Humans are below angels in power and knowledge and if the devil isn’t afraid of heavenly angels then he isn’t afraid of humans. (2 Peter 2:11Jude 1:9)
Jude 1:9 speaks of how even an angel doesn’t pass a judgment down on Satan. Bibleref explains it this way: “In this incident, Michael refused to usurp God’s authority, which stands in contrast to the audacity of false teachers to slander authorities and angels.” “The key point here is that Michael, despite being a powerful being himself, refused to slander the Devil. This proves the arrogance of the apostates Jude is discussing. They are so conceited that they’re doing what even an archangel won’t!” Quotes above from this link: https://www.bibleref.com/Jude/1/Jude-1-9.html
So the devil was not afraid of the archangel Michael as he disputed with him, showing us that the devil certainly wouldn’t be afraid of us. We also know that Michael the archangel isn’t afraid of the devil either. Michael does spiritual combat and even battles Satan in the end.
Michael isn’t in fear of the devil but instead understands he is submissive to the authority of God and does not act on his own will. To learn more about what Scriptures say about angels this link is a good one. https://www.gotquestions.org/angels-Bible.html Yes, we are weak individuals and there is nothing we can do against Satan that would cause him to fear us. Instead, Scriptures remind us we are weak and flawed humans and we need God. ( 2 Corinthians 12:9 , 1 Corinthians 1:27Luke 17:10, Job 40:4)
Watching this video of Steven Furtick the question that comes to mind over and over anytime I see him talk like this is, where is his fear of the Lord? (Deuteronomy 10:12-13)
Steven shows no fear of God, he only shows off in ways that benefit himself. He has manipulative speeches that work the crowd. He knows what to say and do to get his crowd all worked up. People love to hear that they have the power to overcome Satan and they will even say, “Satan, I bind you in Jesus’ name” or they say they have the devil on the run (this one I’ve heard personally). People love believing they are stronger than Satan and can scare him and almost dare him to go against them. Christian’s we need to understand real quick, IT IS NOT within our own strength to battle Satan. This is a very dangerous thing to believe or practice or teach. It’s a very prideful belief that we would think it’s within our own strength or it’s us that does the battling as we shoot off at the mouth to argue with Satan like he is standing there trembling at our words. Anytime someone preaches that we have the power to go head to head with Satan then they are teaching a dangerous thing and if we believe it and practice it then we are fools.
Scriptures say in Acts 19:13-16~ Some Jews who went around driving out evil spirits tried to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who were demon-possessed. They would say, “In the name of the Jesus whom Paul preaches, I command you to come out.” Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?” Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding.

This from Got Questions:

“Jesus had earlier given His apostles specific authority over demons [Mark 3:15). Paul, as an apostle, had received that authority as well (see 2 Corinthians 12:12).”

“..Demons recognize valid authority, and they fear God [see James 2:19). It’s important to note that the authority over demons belongs only to Jesus (see Luke 8:28, 31) and to those to whom Jesus gave it. The demon in Acts 19 says that it knows Jesus and Paul (one of Jesus’ chosen apostles). It refused to recognize any other authority in Ephesus. The demon’s question “who are you?” is chilling in its implications to the seven sons of Sceva and their total lack of authority.”

“Probably the greatest mistake the seven sons of Sceva made was their failure to realize that Paul was not doing the exorcisms. Jesus Christ was doing the exorcisms through Paul.”

“When they came back to report to the Lord what had happened, they were excited about being able to exorcise evil spirits: ‘Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name” (Luke 10:17). Jesus immediately provided some perspective: “Do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven” (verse 20). What is greater than authority over demons? Knowing God is your Father and heaven is your home.”

More on seven sons of Sceva in this link: https://www.gotquestions.org/seven-sons-of-Sceva.html

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So, what should we do when we feel attacked or tempted or as Steven puts it, “Tied up?” 
Do we argue with Satan and scream at him? God tells us in Ephesians 6:10-17 that in order for us to be strong we have to be strong in HIM.”…Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might”. Did you catch that? It’s in His might! We have to ‘put on’ what God tells us to put on for our protection. When we read that whole verse, it says, “So that we may stand”. We are to stand in the strength of His might, not on our own just because we think we are a special Christian that is powerful and important.
Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to “stand” against the schemes of the devil.
We can’t bind Satan or command he go to hell or speak to him or command anything from him.

Yes, it’s true, the devil attacks in many ways. God says the devil will shoot flaming darts at us as said in, Ephesians 6:16, “In all circumstances ‘take up the shield of faith,’ with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one”. But Satan doesn’t do that because he is afraid, he does it because he’s Satan. 

 

Satan can do many things like use situations to discourage us, deceive us, make us doubt, make us believe we have powers, masquerade as the light, even to tempt us and mislead us with instant gratification of the flesh as said here in James 1:14-16~ Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death. So don’t be misled, my dear brothers and sisters.
God tells us how important it is for us believers to keep in His strength as said in Ephesians 6:10-17. We are too ‘put on’ the full armor of God and ‘stand’ on God’s might.
We are too ‘put on’ the belt of truth, ‘put on’ the breastplate of righteousness, ‘put on’ shoes of the gospel of peace, ‘put on’ the shield of faith, ‘put on’ the helmet of salvation and ‘carry’ the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. We were never promised a life without problems but if we are God’s then we have Him and His Word to stand on and to protect us.
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The Armor of God

Ephesians 6:10-17~ Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. This should be enough to convince anyone that Steven Furtick is a danger to listen to and follow but if you want to know more than the following links below should help you out.

 


*Steven Furtick teaches that God Breaks the Law. 
So, apparently, Jesus isn’t sinless if this is the case.
And by the way, Jesus says He came not to abolish the law but to fulfill it.


*Steven Furtick says in this link, “Goliath had David’s sword. Goliath has got your grace”.
In 1 Samuel 17:45-46 David says exactly what he’s going to do in that fight before it starts….“You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you down and cut off your head.” 
David knows it’s all about God and what God wants, “The Lord will deliver you”. David knows God is in control and God is the one that will overcome the armies and its God that deserves the Glory. 
David proclaimed in 1 Samuel 17:47…” the Lord saves not with SWORD and spear” so David is well aware he didn’t NEED a sword to fight Goliath because David knew it wasn’t his strength because David knew the Lord was gonna do it.

*Steven said in a video that church isn’t for those that know Jesus. He says, “Let me get a phone book, there are over 720 churches in Charlotte. I’m sure we can find one where you can stuff your face until you’re so obese spiritually that you can’t even move.” 
Why do so many people continue to go to his church and listen to him then? Does this mean they are not saved because according to him if they are attending his church they are not saved? If they are saved, they wouldn’t be going there? 
I’d have to agree with that part of it, don’t go there.

*Steven says Christians that want to be fed God’s Word are fat, lazy Christians! 
Quote: “We don’t teach from Books of the Bible because it gets in the way of evangelism. We don’t offer different kinds of Bible studies because it gets in the way of evangelism. We don’t teach doctrine because it gets in the way of evangelism. If you want to be fed God’s Word or have the Bible explained to you then you are a fat lazy Christian and you need to shut up and get to work or you need to leave this church because we ONLY do evangelism.”
~Steven Furtick~
I do agree with him on this one as well when he says….”you need to leave his church!” – Tami Dykes

Through The Narrow is written by Tami Dykes and Gina Cook, both are published authors. You can find Tami’s book here, and Gina’s book here.


Tulips & Honey: Episode 14 – Beth Moore, False Teachers, & Women Preachers

Hello, dear ones, I hope this post finds you all doing well. Today I dropped the 14th episode of Tulips & Honey. Hopefully by now the recent events surrounding Moore have calmed down enough for us all to sit down and have a genuine conversation about whether or not she should be teaching. Thats what Becca and I do on this episode. Not only do we discuss what a false teacher is, but we also go into detail about how someone might go from teaching soundly to ignoring Scripture outright.

During the episode we gave a few recommended teachers in place of Moore. These included Doreen Virtue and Melissa Dougherty, Michelle Lesley and Amy Spreeman, DebbieLynn Kespert, Coleen Sharp, Michelle & Betsy, and Elizabeth Prata. The links for these ladies are listed below.

Doreen and Melissa: https://www.youtube.com/user/4AngelTherapy

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyKgD0DLtBN21gfThSalyUQ

Michelle and Amy: https://awordfitlyspoken.life

https://michellelesley.com

https://naomistable.com/author/ntable2013/

DebbieLynn: https://headstickdeb.com

Elizabeth Prata: https://the-end-time.org

http://theologygals.com

https://www.listennotes.com/podcasts/women-of-the-table-women-of-the-table-SMCNay_gGWO/

We also touched on what recently happened with Justin Peters leaving Twitter. I hope that this will continue to encourage better behavior from believers on social media. We also want to show how many other, better, options there are for women to learn from one another. You can find this episode on YouTube, iTunes, Podbean, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. As always, beloved brethren, be good Berean’s and study to show yourselves approved.