Psalm 23 – the “Prosperity” Psalm?

Ok, I seldom pass anything on, but the following is worthy of a blog-scrape. For the record, I was raised Baptist and sent to a hard-core religious school that really stressed the importance of the Bible. However, it’s pretty easy to use one’s understanding of scripture as a baseball bat rather than a tool to experience God’s love & “pass it on” (yes, the quotes refer to that 70s song).

The point of this parody is to highlight how ridiculous it is to always assume the worst. Reading way too much stuff between the lines becomes a lose/lose situation pretty fast. Even with Psalm 23!

This was written by a pastor in South Dakota and it is pretty funny. [Note: apparently he picked it from somewhere else as well] A bit of counter-sarcasm to some revival critics out there. Here in Philly most people are still warning their congregations to stay away from Toronto. I don’t have the heart to mention that was 15 years ago now. Or the new Lakeland stuff! Well enjoy… I hope.

"Now let's not get too silly..."

"Now let's not get too silly..."

****************************************

HERESY HUNTERS INSTITUTE, INC.
Address unlisted

Dear brother,

Thank you for sending us the questionable document. We are always glad to examine any teaching materials that may adversely affect the Church. We do think that this material is dangerous and certainly want to warn the Body of Christ concerning its subtle false doctrines. Our analysis is as follows:

The document:

The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

We weren’t given the name of the author of this document, but it is quite clear that is part of the contemporary, humanistic “gospel” of self.

The first thing we would point out is that this is a “positive confession.” Our research shows that this idea was never heard of in the Church before the metaphysical cults introduced it in the late 19th century. This author has obviously been influenced by these cults.

Secondly, note the “affirmation” that he will not want. This is clearly that “gospel of greed” – the prosperity gospel. Whoever wrote this probably is a follower of these dreadful prosperity preachers. Sorry you couldn’t come up with the author so we could do a background check on him or her. Even without the author’s name, it’s still pretty clear who influenced this individual.

Then the author affirms himself to be perfectly led by the Lord. This is the dangerous delusion of elitism. Many of these groups feel they are the only true Christians. They are the only ones who really represent the name of the Lord. You can see the tremendous spiritual pride lurking behind this, I’m sure.

Our author tells us that he walks through the shadow of death. Obvious Christian Science influence here. Denying the reality of matter and evil. This is indeed a pernicious error. This is also practiced by denying the reality of sickness. Sickness, evil and death are mere illusions. Very dangerous!

Notice the references to “green pastures” and “still waters.” The cults always resort to metaphoric symbols and encourage their victims to visualize. This, of course, opens their minds up to demonic influence. Note also that a life of ease and blessing is pictured, very appealing to the flesh. Seldom do these people ever talk about taking up our cross and following Jesus.

The author now mentions restoring the soul. We see two possible references to dangerous teachings here. Firstly, the teaching of restoration. This is false teaching that suggests that the Church isn’t all God wants it to be. Of course, that is unacceptable. We have the Bible; we need nothing beyond the Scriptures. And then secondly, there could be a suggestion of the teaching of inner healing. We have a paper on this error available if you should so desire.

I will fear no evil; for you are with me. Notice the big “I.” Bold, arrogant, egotistical statements like this are common among these groups. Totally devoid of humility. I think you can see the obvious, humanistic bent.

Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Clearly the error of the authority of the believer is being implied here. Taking the place of God and assuming that mere sinful men can actually wield the rod of God. To say this is presumptuous is mild. This is the “little gods” error. These false teachers never have a due regard for the sovereignty of God.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. The archangel Michael did not dare to bring an accusation against Satan, but these types of teachers boldly mock the Devil. This suggests an unhealthy preoccupation with “spiritual warfare.”

You anoint my head with oil. The height of arrogance. So many today claim they are the anointed of the Lord and no one should question their teachings and activities. I’m sure this author, whoever he is, considers himself to be one of God’s “special” anointed ones.

My cup runs over.
Another allusion to prosperity. A “positive confession” of abundance. Decidedly derived from Unity or one of the other metaphysical cults.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life. No suffering, no trials, no difficulties in life! This is not the Bible gospel. These teachers hold out the promise of problem-free living and then bilk those who listen to them of their finances to support their extravagant life-styles. What a mockery of the cross.

I will dwell in the House of the Lord forever. Actually this type of teaching doesn’t belong in the Church at all. This gospel of greed, positive confession and trouble-free living certainly isn’t based on the Bible.

Thank you for sending us this example of heretical teaching. We advise you to steer clear of this teacher. Although it may have a veneer of Biblical sounding ideas, it is clearly imported from metaphysical and New Age teachings.

Sincerely,
Anonymous

Philadelphia Dead-Raising & Nuptuals: Ben & Betsy

Ralph Archbold takes a fine woman home
Ralph Archbold takes a fine woman home

Well half of this is true at least – Ben Franklin and Betsy Ross have gotten hitched. I saw it yesterday before the Philly Pops concert. My girlfriend spotted the opportunity and we showed up for it. The pops played some great tunes – “Indiana Jones” theme (hers) and of course “Rocky” (mine). Mayor Nutter officiated on a platform in front of Independence Hall.

Actually Ben & Betsy are pretty decomposed by now, 300 years after they roamed these streets. This couple is the closest resemblance we have to them. I heard they met on match.com.

Fun with Firefox 3

I bet he answers to \

You gotta love those guys at Mozilla, makers of the Firefox web browser. If you didn’t realize from the post title, it is now in its third incarnation. And it’s a good one!

Firefox 3

If you don’t have it yet you can get it here.

And once you have it, you can type the following code into the address bar for some nerd humor:

about:robots

Enjoy.

Candidate for Dead-Raising

Hello everyone in Florida – this lady needs to be raised from the dead. Moreover, foxnews.com has got to learn how to write less ridiculous sounding articles. Just take a look at this –

Woman Struck, Killed by Car After Hitting Owl

With Own Car

Yeah, that was the title… and I had to read it a couple times too.

FLORIDA —  Hillsborough County officials say a woman was hit and killed by a car after getting out of her own car to check on an owl she had accidentally hit.

The sheriff’s office says 68-year-old Jean Pearce was driving Sunday night in Keysville near Tampa when she hit an owl in the middle of the road. After pulling over to check on the bird, she was hit by another vehicle. Pearce died at the scene.

Now this is not funny at all, but the brevity and matter-of-factness of the narrative puts me over the top. I’m sure you’ve had no such chuckle to stifle.

No charges have been filed yet against the driver, who has not been identified. The accident is still being investigated.

Meanwhile, animal control officers are checking on the condition of the owl.

That one puts the nail in the coffin. To view this article, click here.

FireTunnels are Fun… Really Fun

this-is-a-firetunnel this-is-another-firetunnel

Yeah, we used to do these at church back in Ohio. PA is a bit too stiff for this, unless you’re in Meadville 🙂

For all you skeptics, don’t worry – you probably won’t feel anything going through. Some people really get into it though. I am really getting jealous of these people – that is a HUGE fireTunnel. People will be blasted for days with that one!

Separated @ Birth: Ryan Seacrest/David Tomberlin?

Separated @ Birth?

Host, David Tomberlin | Host, Ryan Seacrest

david tomberlin ryan-seacrest

So if you would like to read the msnbc.com report on the revival, just click here. The best part of the article for sure was when they called David Tomberlin the “Ryan Seacrest of the revival”. That was just great. So in keeping with the previous post I googled them, and they’re fairly close.

Wacky – as I’m typing this, Todd is commenting on TV about this very thing – apparently they think it’s funny too. Well, here they are.

Separated at Birth: Bam Bam Bigelow?

Separated @ Birth?

     Revivalist Todd Bentley                 Wrestler, Bam Bam Bigelow

The Reverend Todd BentleyWrestler Bam Bam Bigelow

 

…so I’m watching another episode of the Lakeland Outpouring on the web and a thought strikes me. I look it up and – yup – it’s true!  Actually Todd Bentley could probably be considered a supernatural wrestler even beyond the WWF dimension!