Example 1 - Devastation caused to individuals and families by the 'Word-Faith' cult!
From: Pip Baily
Sent: Wednesday, November 24, 2004 6:15 AM
Subject: I was caught up in the word-faith movement
I was involved for 13 years in a church in Kent which taught the doctrines of the word-faith movement very enthusiastically. It grew from about 5 people to maybe a couple of hundred at the peak. Most were from other churches, perhaps "looking for the next new thing". Some families got saved, but most were already Christians.
I was trained as a musician in the Royal Marines, where I "got saved" as we say, so I did lot of music and singing at the church. My military training made me very loyal, as I knew how to take orders and keep my opinions to myself. I suppose I am obsequious by nature anyway.
Some years after the church was founded, my wife's dad died of Huntington's Disease (a rare fatal hereditary brain disorder) after 17 years of suffering, and we also saw her mother die of cancer soon afterwards, because she had ignored her own symptoms to look after her husband. It was stomach cancer. I had done the confess it and believe it stuff with my wife seemingly to no avail. What my wife felt like I don't know; I just gave the pat "faith" answers and expected her to hang in there. What an insensitive clod I was. I had no feelings then - just the cultish substitute for faith that brainwashing eventually produces.
I was moved from Kent to Wiltshire by my firm, having succeeded in fawning my way into head office. We tried several churches, and none fitted. Of course, they were all wrong! We had to change them! Funny - we didn't get any takers. And my wife started acting strangely. Almost imperceptibly, her temper worsened. Her grip on reality faded. She was falling victim to Huntington's. In ten years she was admitted to a home. We had long since stopped going to any church. My musical ability carried me for a while, but nobody was fooled. I sank into depression, lost my job and had to sell my house. I had spent six months sitting on the sofa, staring at the wall. I was sent to a psychiatrist. He said I was ill. I try to fight it, but depression haunts me like my shadow.
So that's my story, make of it what you will.
TCE replies: 10th January 2004
we are so sorry for the way you are feeling.
Psalms 139: O LORD, thou hast searched me and known me! 2 Thou knowest when I sit down and when I rise up; thou discernest my thoughts from afar. 3 Thou searchest out my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. 4 Even before a word is on my tongue, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether. 5 Thou dost beset me behind and before, and layest thy hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain it. 7 Whither shall I go from thy Spirit? Or whither shall I flee from thy presence? 8 If I ascend to heaven, thou art there! If I make my bed in Sheol, thou art there! 9 If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, 10 even there thy hand shall lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. 11 If I say, "Let only darkness cover me, and the light about me be night," 12 even the darkness is not dark to thee, the night is bright as the day; for darkness is as light with thee. 13 For thou didst form my inward parts, thou didst knit me together in my mother's womb. 14 I praise thee, for thou art fearful and wonderful. Wonderful are thy works! Thou knowest me right well; 15 my frame was not hidden from thee, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth. 16 Thy eyes beheld my unformed substance; in thy book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. 17 How precious to me are thy thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! 18 If I would count them, they are more than the sand. When I awake, I am still with thee. 19 O that thou wouldst slay the wicked, O God, and that men of blood would depart from me, 20 men who maliciously defy thee, who lift themselves up against thee for evil! 21 Do I not hate them that hate thee, O LORD? And do I not loathe them that rise up against thee? 22 I hate them with perfect hatred; I count them my enemies. 23 Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! 24 And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!
Psalm 43:5: 5 Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my help and my God.)
I wonder what you understood and experienced about the Lord's immense love towards mankind when you first believed? It required a love far greater and deeper than we could ever imagine for the Father to send His Precious and Beloved Son to walk this earth as a Man, and ultimately to suffer and die in agony at Calvary when He took upon Himself the enormity of the world's sin. Have you ever experienced the Lord's deep and passionate love for you personally, flooding through your whole being? Do you know that you are precious and honoured in the Lord's sight and that He loves you so tenderly, and with such passionate love, that He led His beloved Son to Calvary to set us free from the power of sin and death?
(Isaiah 43:4: 4 Because you are precious in my eyes, and honoured, and I love you, I give men in return for you, peoples in exchange for your life; John 3:16: 16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life).
The words, 'surrender', 'freedom', and 'victory' come to mind. Have you ever truly 'surrendered' your life to Jesus and walked a life of freedom and victory? Believing that Jesus is Lord, the God of our salvation, we come in trust and repentance, surrendering to Him. It is only then that we can walk in victory as we are given power through the Lord's Precious Holy Spirit to overcome sin and temptation and to resist the power of the evil one who will then flee from us because we are in Christ Jesus.
(John 8:31-36: 31 Jesus then said to the Jews who had believed in him, "If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free." 33 They answered him, "We are descendants of Abraham, and have never been in bondage to any one. How is it that you say, 'You will be made free'?" 34 Jesus answered them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, every one who commits sin is a slave to sin. 35 The slave does not continue in the house for ever; the son continues for ever. 36 So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.
1 John 5:1-5: 1 Every one who believes that Jesus is the Christ is a child of God, and every one who loves the parent loves the child. 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. 4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith. 5 Who is it that overcomes the world but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?)
When we remain in Christ Jesus we know freedom and victory because of the Precious Blood of the Lamb which was shed at Calvary.
(1 Peter 1:17-21: 17 And if you invoke as Father Him who judges each one impartially according to his deeds, conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile. 18 You know that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your fathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. 20 He was destined before the foundation of the world but was made manifest at the end of the times for your sake. 21 Through him you have confidence in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.
1 Corinthians 15:54-57: 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory." 55 "O death, where is thy victory? O death, where is thy sting?" 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.)
Our real repentance is rewarded by forgiveness and life that we do not deserve, but our salvation and forgiveness come as free gifts and are drenched in the Lord's passionate love.
You write that you are trying to fight your problems. Christians can only surrender all to Jesus and trust in Him completely, as an infant trusts in his mother.
(Isaiah 53:4-6: 4 Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.)
'Surely He has borne all our griefs and sorrows' at Calvary and you must let Him carry yours and give you victory in His love? Allow Him to heal all your painful memories and experiences. As you give your pain to Him, allow his indescribable love fill you, to flood your whole being
(1 Peter 5:6-7: 6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that in due time he may exalt you. 7 Cast all your anxieties on him, for he cares about you.)
His love is powerful, releasing captives - and releasing joy and wonder into our lives. This joy becomes our strength and the means by which we can face tomorrow. Allow the light of His loving face to shine upon you. Stop fighting alone and simply surrender to His love and allow him to flood in.
(Isaiah 43:15-19: 15 I am the LORD, your Holy One, the Creator of Israel, your King." 16 Thus says the LORD, who makes a way in the sea, a path in the mighty waters, 17 who brings forth chariot and horse, army and warrior; they lie down, they cannot rise, they are extinguished, quenched like a wick: 18 "Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. 19 Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
Matthew 11:28-30: 28 Come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." ).
He loves you with a love more passionate than you have ever known! Pray you will soon experience the inexpressible and glorious joy of His love, and that you will never let it go!
(1 Peter 1:3-9: 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy we have been born anew to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and to an inheritance which is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God's power are guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you rejoice, though now for a little while you may have to suffer various trials, 7 so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold which though perishable is tested by fire, may redound to praise and glory and honour at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8 Without having seen him you love him; though you do not now see him you believe in him and rejoice with unutterable and exalted joy. 9 As the outcome of your faith you obtain the salvation of your souls.
Psalm 33:18-22: Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him, On those who hope for His loving-kindness, 19 To deliver their soul from death and to keep them alive in famine. 20 Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and our shield. 21 For our heart rejoices in Him, Because we trust in His holy name. 22 Let Your loving-kindness, O LORD, be upon us, According as we have hoped in You.)
In Christ Jesus
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