To critics that ragged Grady for continuing his employment years after beginning the exposing and asking the hard questions?
Can you cheer now since in your mindset, Grady has now ‘crossed the (your) line’ from being a ‘hypocrite’ to ’seeing the light’?
Unsettled ChristianityOne blog to rule them all, One blog to find them, One blog to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.
I reckon he is. In all fairness, J. Lee has been coming around to the light for sometime now, especially since the fall of Todd Bentley.
“For the prophetical gifts remain with us, even to the present time. And hence you ought to understand that [the gifts] formerly among your nation have been transferred to us. And just as there were false prophets contemporaneous with your holy prophets, so are there now many false teachers amongst us, of whom our Lord forewarned us to beware; so that in no respect are we deficient, since we know that He foreknew all that would happen to us after His resurrection from the dead and ascension to heaven. For He said we would be put to death, and hated for His name’s sake; and that many false prophets and false Christs would appear in His name, and deceive many: and so has it come about. For many have taught godless, blasphemous, and unholy doctrines, forging them in His name; have taught, too, and even yet are teaching, those things which proceed from the unclean spirit of the devil, and which were put into their hearts. Therefore we are most anxious that you be persuaded not to be misled by such persons, since we know that every one who can speak the truth, and yet speaks it not, shall be judged by God, as God testified by Ezekiel, when He said, ‘I have made thee a watchman to the house of Judah. If the sinner sin, and thou warn him not, he himself shall die in his sin; but his blood will I require at thine hand. But if thou warn him, thou shalt be innocent.’4 And on this account we are, through fear, very earnest in desiring to converse [with men] according to the Scriptures, but not from love of money, or of glory, or of pleasure. For no man can convict us of any of these [vices]. No more do we wish to live like the rulers of your people, whom God reproaches when He says, ‘Your rulers are companions of thieves, lovers of bribes, followers of the rewards.’5 Now, if you know certain amongst us to be of this sort, do not for their sakes blaspheme the Scriptures and Christ, and do not assiduously strive to give falsified interpretations. (Dialogue, 82)
The charismatic movement as we know it has ended. I celebrate what God did in recent years to bring the Holy Spirit’s renewal to the church. My life was totally changed by it. But the cloud is moving, and we cannot pitch our tents around the revivals of the past. While we embrace the eternal things He gave us in those days, we must discard the styles and methods that are no longer fruitful so we can advance.
That doesn’t mean we throw the baby out with the bathwater. We cling to what is good. But we must leave behind the excesses, extremes and flaky doctrines that give us a bad name. The one-man show is over. The prosperity circus was a failure. We must abandon the deceptive hype of the past. People today are craving authenticity—not shallow words and empty promises.
He then goes on to speak of a new generation of church folk with a heart more for compassion than events, and “They are relational, not event-driven. And they demand character from leaders rather than simply celebrating a man or woman’s spiritual anointing.”
It sounds like this man has started the civil war that the false prophets like Rick Joyner spoke about. Why? Because J. Lee is attempting to reground the Charismatic movement and will be faced with stiff opposition.
He says one thing, though, that does not sit will with me -
No one has coined a term for this movement yet, but it is growing—and it represents the future of Christianity in our country.
Why do we need a new name or a new movement? He needs to let go of the ‘new’ and take hold of the ‘old.’ I like the new J. Lee, to be honest, and I pray that he continues on his journey.
Friends, this is getting interesting. First, J. Lee comes out against Todd’s adulterous remarriage. Then Rick comes out against J. Lee. And now this. What is this? This is a pretty good less than subtle hint that J. Lee is getting tired of the New Apostolic Reformation. It has been reported that his name has been removed from their list of Apostles. I never thought that J. Lee Grady would become a sane voice in all of this. Bully for him.
Almost two years ago a dynamic preacher from a growing church in the Southeast was caught in adultery. His distraught wife talked with the “other woman,” an exotic dancer from another country, and shared Christ with her. Meanwhile a small group of pastors “covered” the situation and hurriedly sent the embarrassed pastor to a few weeks of counseling. In the end, the pastor and his wife divorced and members of the congregation who didn’t have all the facts blamed her for the breakup.
We need to be careful. Current fads involving angels, ecstatic worship and necromancy could push us off the edge of spiritual sanity.
No one fully understands what Nadab and Abihu did to prompt God to strike them dead in the sanctuary of Israel. The Bible says they loaded their firepans with incense, ignited the substance and “offered strange fire before the Lord, which He had not commanded them” (Lev. 10:1, NASB). As a result of their careless and irreverent behavior, fire came from God’s presence and consumed them.
Zap. In an instant they were ashes.
When Moses had to explain to Aaron what happened to the two men, he said: “It is what the Lord spoke, saying, ‘By those who come near to Me I will be treated as holy, and before all the people I will be honored’” (v. 3). Although we don’t know the details of what Nadab and his brother did with the holy incense, we know they were careless and irreverent about the things of God.
I cannot disagree with him.
The church today faces a serious leadership crisis. The only way to solve it is to embrace three forgotten virtues.
The people of Israel faced a leadership crisis during their sojourn in the wilderness. From morning until evening, dozens of people would line up outside Moses’ tent to ask him to resolve a dispute. When his father-in-law, Jethro, saw the crowds outside his door, he pulled Moses aside and gave him wise advice that ended up being recorded in Scripture.Jethro warned his son-in-law that he would burn out if he continued to govern the nation by himself. He told Moses: “You shall select out of all the people able men who fear God, men of truth, those who hate dishonest gain; and you shall place these over them as leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens” (Ex. 18:21, NASB).
[12.31.08] Billy Wilson, executive director of the International Center for Spiritual Renewal and a leader at the Awakening America Alliance, says Christians in America must recognize the moral depravity of the times, humbly repent for the spiritual passivity of the church, and fast and pray for a Third Great Awakening.
“We are very convinced that our present spiritual state in the church demands radical action,” Wilson told Charisma. “One of the radical actions that scripture gives us, which God ordains, is the act of fasting. One of the things we’re fasting for and repenting of is our lack of effectiveness in changing our culture for Christ, and also for [failing] to bring a new generation to Christ.”
Christian and Jewish observers say Israel was forced into launching airstrikes last Saturday to defend against Hamas rocket attacks.
Christian political analyst and commentator Mike Evans said on Monday that the mainstream media has ignored Israel’s main rationale for airstrikes in Gaza. “The answer is quite simply one that most do not want to hear,” Evans said. “Self-defense.”
The war between Israel and Hamas is being waged in the voices of the Evangelicals, making this a theological – eschatological – matter.This article is from J. Lee Grady’s ‘Chrasima’ Magazine.
I wonder if Charisma will say anything about their involvement in supporting Todd? One of the responsibilities that lay at the feet of leaders is the care of all the flock, especially the weakest. If Charisma is trying to be the leaving voice in print of a movement, then where was the care of the weak in protecting them from Todd and his ungodly doctrine?
Leaders of the Canadian ministry evangelist Todd Bentley founded a decade ago say the one-time revivalist is “intent” on divorcing his wife and is yet to begin a restoration process.
In a six-page letter to ministry supporters, the board of Fresh Fire Ministries (FFM) released more details about the circumstances that led to Bentley’s departure in August from the Lakeland, Fla., revival meetings he led for four months.
As a tag line, J. Lee ask ‘Looking back at what happened in Lakeland, I wonder if we can agree on what went wrong.’ I doubt it. J. Lee, what went wrong, was that it was not of God.
Further, J. Lee Grady says,
It has been four months since Canadian evangelist Todd Bentley fled the scene of Florida’s Lakeland Revival amid rumors of a moral failure. When Bentley vanished in August, the crowds thinned, God TV stopped broadcasting services, the meetings eventually shut down and Bentley’s worship leader took the popular music of the revival on the road.Meanwhile, many people were left scratching their heads. Some were angry with Bentley for leaving his wife. Some were confused because their faith had been energized during the six-monthlong experience. Many charismatic ministry leaders defended the revival, saying that it was never supposed to focus on a man. Others blamed Bentley’s critics for the revival’s demise.
“Ministers of the gospel need both godly character and powerful anointing. Why did we ever settle for the idea that we should have one without the other.”Late last week the board of directors of Fresh Fire Ministries—which Bentley resigned from in August—released a lengthy statement to update its supporters on Bentley’s condition. The letter confirmed that (1) Bentley is “resolute in his intentions” to divorce his wife, Shonnah—and that “he admits to being 100% responsible for the divorce”; (2) his relationship with his former intern is ongoing; (3) the evangelist drank inappropriately during the revival; and (4) he has yet to enter into a clear system of accountability with Christian leaders who have offered to help him.The six-page statement, which defended the impact of the Lakeland Revival, did not excuse Bentley’s behavior. “We believe there are currently no biblical grounds for Todd to leave his wife and children,” the board members said. They added: “The nature of the present relationship between Todd and his former staff member is that of adultery.”Lakeland was a painful chapter in the history of our movement, not just because such a highly visible preacher made such embarrassing moral choices but also because Christian leaders never agreed on what went wrong or how it could have been avoided. Now that the accident scene is in our rearview mirror, I wonder if we can agree on at least some points. Here are some lessons I hope we have learned by now:Lesson #1: Accountability. Accountability. Accountability. I wish just saying the word over and over could impress the concept in our minds. Leaders must live according to biblical standards. Period. Bentley’s board admitted in their statement that after the Lakeland meetings went into full swing, Bentley developed troubling behavior patterns. That would have been the right time for someone with apostolic courage to demand that Bentley step down for a season until he got his spiritual life in order. If we really want New Testament miracles and New Testament impact, maybe we should embrace New Testament discipline.Lesson #2: The one-man show is over. New Testament ministry is about teams, not hotshots. Paul shared the workload with Barnabas, Phoebe, Clement, Priscilla, Aquilla and many others. And he protested when people tried to make him out to be a god. When will we learn that the superstar syndrome actually thwarts genuine revival because it causes audiences to focus on man instead of Jesus?I know there are those who insist that Bentley didn’t want people to notice him. But if that’s true, why did he cover himself with tattoos a few years ago, when he was in the ministry? I’m not a stickler about tattoos, but in Bentley’s case they definitely should have been a red flag. Anyone who craves that much attention needs counseling before they get on a stage.Lesson #3: Chill out. The Fresh Fire board, in last week’s statement, admitted that one of their biggest mistakes was allowing Bentley’s meetings to go on week after week without a break. Bentley tried to preach continually without rest, and as a result he burned out. Most likely his staff burned out too. No Sabbath, no time for family, no time to unwind. No human being can keep such a schedule without imploding.Isn’t this also true for the American church scene? Our rule has become, “The show must go on.” We are driven to keep the seats full and the money coming in. The more we work, the more we grow—so we have to work harder to maintain the growth and pay the bills. The pace becomes more and more frantic until the engines fail and the wheels fall off. Building God’s way requires patience, pacing, regular maintenance and plenty of downtime to receive His ongoing guidance and grace.Lesson #4: Character is more important than anointing. Some revival groupies disagree with me on this. They’re so desperate for a display of miracles that they’ll take a zap from someone who has questionable morals or shoddy values. They don’t mind who lays hands on them as long as they are thrown to the floor while the crowd cheers.I love revival too, and I’ve spent time on the floor soaking in God’s presence. I love the anointing. But please: Can you show me in the Word of God that character is not required of leaders? The Bible says imposters who work miracles will spend eternity in hell. Working miracles does not win anyone brownie points with God. Ministers of the gospel need both godly character and powerful anointing. Why did we ever settle for the idea that we should have one without the other?Lesson #5: Lay hands on no man quickly. Many of us are still grieving over the fact that a large number of charismatic leaders stood on a stage in Lakeland in June and publicly commissioned Bentley. Some praised him for his integrity and humility while others prophesied about the nations he will evangelize and the increased spiritual influence he will wield. Today those proclamations (readily available on You Tube) seem hollow and embarrassing.Some who stood on that stage insist that God told them to do a public commissioning service. One recently hinted to me that it was a mistake. I’ll let them sort that out. Personally, it saddens me that our movement has been tarnished by what appears to be a serious lack of discernment. In the crazy world of independent ministries—which already lack proper accountability—leaders should take the time to investigate a preacher before commending him on international television.Lesson #6: You can’t have revival without repentance. The word “revival” is thrown around loosely these days. If a few people fall on the floor, get goose bumps or see gold dust, we are ready to christen it a revival and put it on television as soon as possible. After all, if large crowds gather, it must be God!I’m tired of imitations. History shows that genuine revival is more than a bunch of blessed bodies in a pile. We need more than angel feathers, emotional euphoria and limp pep talks about getting high on Jesus. We need the strong Word of God that convicts hearts, demands repentance, slays sin and has the power to produce converts who will withstand temptation.With Lakeland behind us, let’s celebrate the testimonies that came out of it, enjoy the songs we sang during it and pray for the restoration of the man God used to start it. Then, let’s learn from our mistakes and press on to better things.