Precious Jesus

"Afresh, precious, precious Jesus, I resign this body to You, for doing or suffering, for living or dying. Will You accept it? Will You use me for Your glory more than heretofore, that You may have some little return for all the benefits You have done to me? Oh, do grant this request; my heart longs for it, my spirit pleads for it; and "if You will, You can." You know the hot temptation of which I am the subject. Bring Your glory out of it, and keep me from the evil, and it shall be well." - Ruth Bryan

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Are "Discernment Ministries" Biblical?

The simple, quick answer is NO.

Many try to pass themselves off as a "discernment ministry" (DM) and yet we find zero biblical call to this end. Instead of preaching the Gospel, they have taken it upon themselves (called themselves) to be a "watchman" which is another, less demanding title for a prophet. Being a 'watchman' leaves the door open for this 'watcher' to be wrong in his assessment or predictions concerning a person, group, or organization, whereas a real prophet must be correct 100% of the time. A subtle difference indeed, but one that shows the true heart and intent to be that of deceit for personal gain and not the ultimate end of glorifying the Lord Jesus.

There are many characteristics that DMs have in common. One of these is that it is hard (impossible?) to find any articles or posts that actually teach and preach the Gospel of the Christ. What little is found is laced with false doctrine that changes the Gospel into another gospel---which is no Gospel at all. If a DM seldom or never has anything to say that exalts Christ exclusively, never is able to muster teaching on some aspect of the Gospel it may be because there is nothing in their heart to draw upon---"As a man thinks in his heart, so is he."

Money is usually in the forefront with "donate" or "give" tabs placed in strategic, even multiple spots on their website. This shows two things: there is a love of money that generates the desire for it from the "service" rendered and it shows the ego is in play as the money received is some sort of validation of their "ministry." They do not realize that if what they are doing is really from God that He will supply their need (not grant their lust). Matt. 6:24-34.

Next we find a list of favorite targets to be 'exposed' while there is a corresponding list of Golden Boy/Golden Girl "teachers" that are absolutely taboo and untouchable. When the acceptable targets and the untouchables intersect (and they nearly always do) there is never any mention of this so as to hide the evils of the ones protected. Such complicity will be judged by the Judge.

Then there is the claim to be in possession of the Gift of Discernment. Whether this is plainly stated or tacitly inferred is immaterial. They have the 'gift,' they are the 'watchman' so how dare anyone question their statements or their (self-granted) authority? To do so will be rewarded with an invitation to never speak to them again, never comment on their blog again, and certainly say nothing of your concerns to others. All of this comes in the form of a veiled threat, with some not so veiled. The actual Gift of Discernment is defined in 1 Cor. 12:10 as "discerning of spirits" and who can do this today? This Gift seems to have gone away as early as John's last days as he writes in 1 John 4:1-5 that we are to "test the spirits" not just 'know' whether they are of God or not. John details the specifics of this 'test' and know that there is only one correct answer---a positive yes. The writer of Hebrews further elaborates that discernment comes from ingesting the 'solid food' of the Gospel with the senses being exercised (multiple tests) to discern both good and evil (Heb. 5:14). Today, discernment is learned as set forth in the aforementioned verses, it is not acquired by some form of osmosis or mystic knowledge as some would have us believe.

Then there are the "rules for commenting" that are usually twisted to evict the undesirables. Often, this is nothing more than an excuse to exonerate the blog owner in their blatant bully tactics employed against those who do not conform. Again, "how dare you question me?!?"

Nearly every Book of the New Testament (Philemon?) contains multiple warnings about false prophets and their doctrines. It is a most necessary endeavor to expose these charlatans and the fraud they perpetrate on the Body of Christ. No where do we find that the teaching/preaching of the Gospel is neglected (some to the point of exclusion) even when names were being named. Rather, the Gospel was evident before, during and after the exposing of the evil ones and this should tell us the primary importance of the real call from God for all of us which is to preach the Gospel.

It may be possible to get so caught up in 'discerning' that we find ourselves doing as the Ephesians did as they "left their first love" (Rev. 2:4). The folks in Pergamos were first praised by the Lord Jesus then scolded by Him as they gave way to the doctrine of Balaam, the putting of stumbling blocks before their brethren, the allowing for the teaching of false doctrines. [Do we get so caught up chasing one thing that others slip by our notice? A common tactic of the wicked one.] Rev. 2:12-17. Do we allow for the modern day Jezebels (Golden Girls) to run free while playing games with those on the approved target list? The consequences are dire as spelled out in Rev. 2:18-29.

It is one thing to warn others of the dangers of the multitude of false prophets of our day---a necessary endeavor. It is quite another to show favoritism in the neglect of obvious evidence when the one exposed is found on the 'favored sons' lists. For a God who does show partiality this is an abomination in His sight, one that will not go unpunished. May the Lord open our eyes to deceit so prevalent in today's DMs.


lyn said...

Excellent post Darrel; one DM blog recently chastised me for mentioning a famous celebrity preacher and his false teaching on the mark in my comment. Now, I am not able to comment there any longer - no loss. This female blog owner takes it upon herself to expose what should be a no brainer to God's elect. We KNOW about those false teachers/movements - we expect it! Didn't our Lord warn us of such? Yet, we have these DM that feel the need to post this garbage over and over.
When you do comment and it is met with disaproval by the DM blog owner{s}, you will face their childish tactics, like removing your comment or disallowing you to comment further. To the wind with these unnecessary DM blogs! God gives us discernment for a reason, we don't need women or men blogging about it and then expecting donated $$.

Darrel said...

I know of whom you speak and have been considering whether or not to email her on this matter. Now, I will and will send a copy to you if you like, later this PM. Bully tactics have no place before the Lord Jesus or His people. Neither does partiality on any level. I had no idea you were "banned." Me too, probably, but now I won't be going back unless she repents.

lyn said...

Yes, do send me a copy. I have no desire to continue with such childish tactics by 'professed believers' in Christ. Time is too short for this rubbish.