(Continued from page 232)
Eells and the '*Duck of Death!'
If God gives Christians visions and dreams that are proven authentic by being factually and Scripturally verifiable we should all rejoice. But when they are, at best, vain imagination or conjured up by divination techniques we must question the 'dreamers' and their motives.
None of the prophets used visualization or any other technique for getting revelations from God, but repeatedly state, 'The Word of the Lord came unto me.' That prophets did not make their revelations happen whenever they pleased, and did not initiate them, is clearly shown in Scripture as, for example, in Jeremiah 42v7 where Jeremiah went to God for guidance:
'Ten days passed before the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah.'
In John 21 the appearance of Jesus on the lake shore was a surprise to the disciples, not something they created in their minds by 'visualization.'
God's Word is written in the simplest of literary style upon which objective truth can be hung. When you read something written by a novelist, you see in your mind a picture that the novelist is painting. This is a legitimate use of the imagination. An architect properly visualizes the structure he intends to be constructed, just as a car or clothing designer will visualize their 'creations.' But thinking that you can create reality with your mind or get God to carry out the bidding of your mind - that you can manipulate Him - is stepping into the occult.
While the Bible gives visual descriptions of God and Jesus the examples, such as the description of Jesus in Revelation 1:
'14 His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; 15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. 16 And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp two-edged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.'
Are we expected to visualize the son of God with a literal sword coming out of His mouth? Or should we accept that the description is telling us something we can't possibly visualize and is an image given with the intention to teach us something deeper. If you've ever seen artists impressions of the description in these verse (the Jehovah's Witnesses are fond of such illustrations) you will now how inadequately they represent the Scripture. Again, in Psalms 91v4 we read how God will cover us with His feathers and under His wings we shall trust! Should we conjure up an image of a giant bird and say that God is like that? It is false teaching to claim that the best way to get to know God is to visualize Christ, who is God manifest in the flesh. Visualizing an entity, even 'God' or 'Christ,' puts one in touch with a masquerading demon. Denying any occult involvement, teachers of this technique claim: 'Visualize Christ as your favourite artist paints Him - then talk to Him and He will respond.' It is sheer delusion to enter into a relationship with an imaginary 'Christ' and the idea of a picture created in the mind has now moved onto 'falling in love' with the picture, imagining that it is talking back, 'Romancing Jesus,' and other visualization ideas bordering on insanity.
Adherents suggest that visualizing Bible scenes helps to understand them - as if visualizing oneself seated among the listening multitude could help us to understand the 'Sermon on the Mount'? How many who saw and heard Jesus with their physical eyes and ears understood or obeyed what He said! The Bible never suggests that 'knowing' God and His Word can be aided by images and, if it was an accurate or essential technique, the Bible would surely give sufficient data and technique to carry out the visualization. 'Eye hath not seen nor ear heard,' but God reveals Himself and His truth to our hearts 'by his Spirit...because they are spiritually discerned' (1 Corinthians 2v9-14). Images certainly appeal to the flesh (consider how the Roman Catholic Cult uses images to promote prayer and worship to Mary) and doubtlessly aid in demonisation of those visualizing.
What folly to think that an image of Christ created by one's imagination helps one to know and love Him! Jesus promised, 'He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me...and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him...and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him and make our abode with him' (Jn 14v21-23). We need to know God and His love in our hearts and, as we seek Him in His Word and in prayer, He will reveal Himself by His Spirit. We are to love Him with our whole heart, soul, and might - and the desire to obey this first and greatest commandment must be our passion. Only then will we begin to manifest that love for one another which Christ said would be the mark whereby the world would be able to recognize His true disciples because we obey our Saviour who said:
'If ye love me, keep my commandments.'
Whenever the Bible gives us what might be called 'visual language', it is to teach us something beyond the literal reality and occultic 'visualization' would only lead us astray.
(*with apologies to Gene Hackman and his role in 'Unforgiven')
Man-child, Witnesses & Tribulation Timing
While many in these deceptive and false Christian ministries have embraced occult teachings including 'visualization' we find that Eells and his co-workers, while self-endorsing the wildest and vaguest of dreams and visions, warn against many of these excesses that do not fit in with their own paradigm, as we can find at:
On these pages we read Eells' and co-writers' opinion and warnings about other charismanic deceptions, e.g. Toronto/Brownsville/Lakeland & Todd Bentley/or the 'Romantic Lover/Romancing Jesus Movement.' There are many warnings against other charismanic errors on Eells' pages and we would never advise people to read these in order to discern truth from error. Again, would anyone really believe that God sent this vision (titled "A DECEPTION made of SUGAR" - extracts by Arthur Eedle. Vision in 1974) when He has made deception so easy to discern in His Word - see if you can read it without laughing out loud!?:
'As I sat looking at this amazing scene I began to see something else, and because of its strangeness my mind was alerted immediately to the fact that God was conveying truth in visionary form. I saw a duck, and I knew that it had been made of icing sugar because a hand was smoothing down the surface with a knife. When all was complete, the strange thing padded along on its webbed feet as though alive, and settled down on a flat surface somewhere. But if this was strange, the next part of the vision took me even more by surprise, because I saw dozens of people arriving at the duck, and it was only then that I realised how large it was. It must have been all of forty feet tall! The people were excited about the coming of the duck, and some of those who were braver than the rest even went up to it and touched it. One of them licked his fingers and the taste was sweet. Breaking a fragment from the surface he ate it, and jumped for joy. Others gained confidence and followed his example until they were all delirious with excitement. I saw them singing, dancing, throwing up their hands in the air, and embracing each other. The festive atmosphere was its own advertisement. People arrived in droves, pushing and shoving, and climbing over the duck with the aid of ladders in an effort to obtain a handful of icing sugar and join in the fun.'
Truly 'quackers'! Mature Christians checking through Eells' pages will see many excellent examples of people who are thoroughly deceived, and further evidence of the way in which Satan's kingdom is divided against itself (Matt 12v25). We are reminded of the view that the Mormons express about the Jehovah's Witnesses, and vice versa, when we read Eells' pages attacking these errors while, no doubt, Bentley et al would reciprocate. The truth is that all of these groups are in error, yet they are in turn blinded to the truth regarding their own heresies! As Puritan William Gurnall wrote in his classic, The Christian in Complete Armour:
'All the legions of devils and multitudes of wicked men and women form a single mystical body of wickedness, as Christ and His saints are one mystical holy body. One Spirit unites Christ and His saints and one spirit unites the devils and ungodly men. Their darts are all shot from the same bow and by the same hand. The Christian's fight, then, is a single duel with one great enemy. But this enemy unites all forces to arm themselves with darts of the worst kind.' (Vol. 3, p101-2)
That the enemies 'darts' vary wildly, so that one part of his deception will be at odds with another in close proximity, is seen in the typical rambling 'dreams and visions' reported through Eells' ministry, e.g. this one from Tony Hinton:
'My wife and I were floating along a body of water. It appeared to be a lake, but was large like an ocean. We each were on a separate float, which was yellow gold in color. The waters are the peoples of the world. The yellow gold is the nature of Christ, which separates (sanctifies) and preserves the righteous from the world. We were laying on our backs on these floats, looking up at a brilliant sun and beautiful blue sky. At this time the water was still like glass. We were dressed in white body suits similar to skin diving suits. Those in white are the righteous that are separated from the world (body suits) with their face to the Son of God in faith rather than on the world and the wicked. In our hands, we each had Bibles and were reading to each other, taking turns reading aloud. These were special Bibles, because they were in no way affected by the weather or water. The ink did not run if they got wet and the pages did not blow in the wind. The special Bibles are the unleavened bread, which is not polluted with the thinking of men, the water. ...'
This 'dream' rambles on until Hinton reports: 'I then woke up, and I was crying. My beard and my bed were soaked. I was sick for most of the day.'
Not surprisingly Hinton wakes exhibiting all the symptoms of an occult visitation or an illness! Of course, we are supposed to believe that these 'visions' are comparable to those of Old Testament prophets or the apostles. But if we all reported our feverish dreams for interpretation, as if from God, the internet would certainly be 'awash' with such rambling and insignificant 'visions.'
Visions and dreams are not a problem to Christians - if God gives them! But how do we know when they are from God or if we are either conjuring them up by divination techniques, or they are the result of hallucinations caused by some other factor, e.g. illness, drugs, or even demons? Often the exegesis used by Eells and his co-workers is incredible - but, since there are no specifics to check (time, dates, literal events!) they think they can get away from this. There are many accounts on Eells' site of this kind:
'I had the impression they were Israelites ... I looked up as well and saw two men coming down from the sky dressed in sackcloth. We all instinctively knew that these men were Moses and Elijah ... '
'The impression ... all instinctively knew'? How can you be at all certain that you are receiving anything at all from God? Is God really going to give some great 'End Times' prophesies or teaching relying on these kind of vague waffling? The teachings that these 'revelations' supposedly support are simply not consistent with Scripture. And to any tempted to believe that it could just be the relatively innocent result of 'eating too much cheese' - or some other aberration of the human condition - we must point out that these ramblings all spill from a ministry that has major doctrinal errors regarding the Nature of the Father and Son!
God's prophets never used visualization or any other technique for getting revelations from God, but repeatedly state, 'The Word of the Lord came unto me.' That they could not make this happen whenever they pleased and did not initiate it is clear, e.g. Jeremiah 42v7 where Jeremiah goes to God for guidance. He did not 'visualize God' as some sincere, but deceived, Christians teach in seminars around the world. We are told, 'And it came to pass after ten days, that the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah.' We mention this because Eells' website warns of those they consider deceptions, such as the practices of Todd Bentley and others who are clearly named as deceivers.
Is it possible for a deceiver being used by Satan to warn of other Satanic deceptions? The answer is obviously, 'Yes'! Satan does not care which deception he gets you with - as long as you reject the True, historical, Biblical Jesus you are lost. As Jesus said (Matthew 12v25ff.):
25 And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand: 26 And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand? 27 And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges.28 But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. 29 Or else how can one enter into a strong man's house, and spoil his goods, except he first bind the strong man? and then he will spoil his house.
Christ came to 'destroy all the works of the evil one' (1 John 3v8) and Satan is therefore 'divided against himself' and one part of his kingdom wars against another part.
But in supposed evangelical circles we also get the same kind of supposed 'visitations' by 'angelic beings' or, rather, demons impersonating the Holy Spirit's work and occult, anti-Biblical concepts which couldn't be more contrary to the real work of the Spirit. Certainly, the penchant for introspection and symbolism brought in by mysticism, New Age shamanism, and Jungian psychotherapy have swept many into the delusionary world of the experiential and hopelessly subjective. Thus many have been in communication with a spirit guide, i.e. a demon appearing as an angel of light.
Jesus said that He came that we might have life, even a more abundant life (Jn 10v10), and His words indicate His willingness to help those who commit their lives to Him. His offer is not only Wonderful (Isa 9v6 - He is also as Eternal as the Father, and therefore Almighty God and not a created being as Eells would have it!), but it is the only true help available and needed by believers. God alone knows our every thought and action - and what good or evil they will produce. The Spirit of Christ is our personal Counsellor and God's Word our only true counselling manual, containing His insights, corrections, tender mercies, and healing balm for whatever afflicts our heart and soul.
Reading Eells' website we see the staggering number of 'Christians' who want 'a second opinion' or seek gifts of the Spirit so that they can be absolutely sure that they are not seeing the works of deceiving spirits. This trend shows the greatly diminishing reliance on the Word of God. The danger is always because 'it sounds Biblical' and the chief promoters are those who have become highly influential leaders.
All of these heretical groups fail to see that they seek an emotional religious life which is always seeking for signs and manifestations - whether it is Hinn blowing into a microphone, Bentley shouting 'Bam,' or Gnostic dream and vision interpretations. The evil of God's (professing) children confounding the Christian life with hysterical sensationalism, emotional and noisy manifestations, or waffling interpretations that simply remain unproven cause them to take their eyes off the Word of God . This is not the way to serve God, or grow in grace and in the knowledge of God. To be always on the outlook for signs and dreams, for voices and visions, for strong emotional responses, and for the ecstatic state of rapture, is extremely dangerous. The call to a holy life is clear in the Bible and emotional manifestations are too often a substitute for a deep religious life.
Let us pray that genuine unity will come centred in truth and that there will be conviction of sin, repentance and a renewed determination to contend earnestly for the faith once for all delivered to the saints.
Their website http://www.unleavenedbreadministries.org/?page=tribtiming
picked out this 'portion of [their] book Hidden Manna for the End Times, chapter 6, entitled 'Caught Up to the Throne' and it begins:
'The Jewish Feast of Hanukkah typifies the time of the anointing of the Man-child at the beginning of the Tribulation in order to spread that anointing throughout the Bride and the larger Church. ... Hanukkah ... celebrates the victory of the Maccabees over the Grecian beast kingdom of 165 B.C. and the rededication of the Temple that had been defiled by that kingdom. Their situation typifies the same spiritual situation we are seeing presently in the Church. The beast kingdom of this world has defiled the Temple of God's people with its thinking and ways. The Hellenists, who were a type of the worldly Christian and their leaders, felt that their brethren were not a modern sophisticated society like the Greeks and so did everything they could to merge Israel into the Grecian beast kingdom in culture and thought. As a true type, the light of the menorah of Israel was put out during those days when God's people indulged in the lukewarm darkness of the world even as today in spiritual Israel, the Church.
Eells joins Earl Paulk, Rick Godwin and the many other deceivers who have swallowed the foolish reconstructionist/kingdom/dominion thesis that Israel was 'excommunicated' by God in A.D.70 when the armies of Titus destroyed Jerusalem. On the contrary, on the day of Pentecost, when the church was established, national Israel did not cease to exist. Israel remains God's special people and is the beneficiary of particular promises which apply to her alone and which are in the process of being fulfilled. The growing anti-Semitism movement which identifies the church as Israel, and which has raised its ugly head in support of Palestinian terrorism every time Israel dares to defend itself against the murderous and illegal attacks perpetrated by Hamas and its allies, denies any place for national Israel in God's future plans, and declares that all of the promises and unfulfilled prophecies that once referred to Israel now belong to the church. Earl Paulk, one of the leaders in this movement, writes:
Some of the strongest fundamental churches still preach that Christ will return to gather national Israel unto Himself, and I say that is deception and will keep the Kingdom of God from coming to pass! In almost any Christian bookstore, about 99% of the books will say that 'God's time-clock is Israel' and that 'God's covenant is still with Israel.'...[I say that] prophecies about Israel as a nation [are] now transferred to spiritual Israel, which is the people of God [i.e., the church]... (Earl Paulk, The Handwriting on the Wall [booklet self-published by Paulk's Chapel Hill Harvester Church, Decatur, GA 30034), 17,19-20]).
Christians in the West have traditionally been the major base of support for Israel. With this false 'the-church-is-Israel' movement gaining a wide following a drastic change is developing in the attitude of many Christians, especially charismatics, toward Israel. While those promoting this belief deny the charge of anti-Semitism, they increasingly use sarcasm, ridicule and open antagonism, as exemplified by Rick Godwin, a long-time associate of James Robison:
'They are not chosen, they are cursed! They are not blessed, they are cursed!...Yes, and you hear Jerry Falwell and everybody else say the reason America's great is because America's blessed Israel. They sure have. Which Israel? The Israel - the church. ...That's the Israel of God, not that garlic one over on the Mediterranean Sea!' [speaking in Oklahoma City on April 11, 1988].
The page continues with many fanciful dreams concerning the 'Man-child ministry' and their interpretations:
'The first seven days of Hanukkah represent the miraculous revival of that light through the Church in the seven day/years of the Tribulation. This was symbolized by the lighting of the Temple menorah, a seven-branched lampstand representing the seven Churches. Jesus, as a type of the Man-child, was circumcised eight days after His birth, symbolizing the cutting off of the flesh on the eighth day/year, called the Day of the Lord. This will be after seven day/years of the Man-child's Tribulation ministry when the old body is cut off and the new body is received. Whether the First-fruits Man-child will be anointed during the Feast of Hanukkah or not, God is still about to fulfill that sign in the days to come by rededicating the New Testament Temple and multiplying the oil of the First-fruits Man-child in them. As Jesus multiplied His anointing through His apostolic witnesses to the larger Church, so the Man-child will multiply that anointing through end-time witnesses to miraculously restore the light of the Church.... The man-child will come with the authority of God to bring God's people out of bondage to the world and through the wilderness tribulation.
>>> 'Bible Code - Part I'
(Continued on page 234)