Date: 19th May 2005Is this your Jesus?
Name: Tom Wood
Subject: another scripture
through reading your indepth website i felt i should respond. I belong to Ray Bevan's church, someone you were impelled to write about among others. the article used alot of scriptures to discredit the church leaders in question, but one scripture i have for you is matt 7;18 'A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.'. i am proof of the fruitfulness of this tree, i was a pathetic, mixed up kid with a drink problem before God called me to sit under the teaching of Ray Bevan. and im one of many. you cannot defy this scripture, this church produces good fruit.
I prayer that you accept this as constructive, God loves you, but He also loves ALL these people you have set out to comdemn and shame. I understand that you feel you should warn people about false prophets, but before you try to destroy a ministry, check the fruit first!
matt 7:18 "A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit."
TCE replies: 2nd June 2005
thank you for taking the time to write to us.
If you have given up your past life and turned in repentance and surrender to the offer of free eternal life in the (Biblical) Lord Jesus Christ we are very happy.
However, if you truly believe that God called you 'to sit under the teaching of Ray Bevan' then we wonder if it is the 'Jesus' of Bevan and the Word Faith heretics that you have in fact embraced. This 'Jesus' is not the historical, Biblical, Lord of all, but is described in Word Faith terms on this page that you have read carefully, we hope.
It is a sad fact of life that many people, who have despaired of their life and are seeking the truth, think God has answered their prayer when the cults, such as the Jehovah's Witnesses or Mormons, come to their doors. Such people only come to the true Jesus when they read the Word of God free of cultic influences and see that they have been deceived by the leaders of these cults.
The Parable of the Sower exemplifies a warning - that Satan can come and replace the truth with lies (Mark 4:2-20):
2 He taught them many things by parables, and in his teaching said: 3 "Listen! A farmer went out to sow his seed. 4 As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. 5 Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. 6 But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants, so that they did not bear grain. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up, grew and produced a crop, multiplying thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times." 9 Then Jesus said, "He who has ears to hear, let him hear." 10 When he was alone, the Twelve and the others around him asked him about the parables. 11 He told them, "The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those on the outside everything is said in parables 12 so that, " `they may be ever seeing but never perceiving, and ever hearing but never understanding; otherwise they might turn and be forgiven!' " 13 Then Jesus said to them, "Don't you understand this parable? How then will you understand any parable? 14 The farmer sows the word. 15 Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them. 16 Others, like seed sown on rocky places, hear the word and at once receive it with joy. 17 But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. 18 Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word; 19 but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful. 20 Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop--thirty, sixty or even a hundred times what was sown."
How you hear the word and react to it determines which person you are - of the lost or of the saved - and, in this instance, whether you are at least partially deceived by Satan or truly set free in Christ. If you have read our pages dealing with Bevan and Word Faith then you, at least, now have the opportunity to choose who you are going to follow - the ideas of man or the whole truth of God! There are still many churches in the Newport and Cardiff area who, while they do not offer the exciting razzmatazz of the 'Prosperity Gospel', still preach the true Jesus and His Gospel and this should make your joy complete (John 15:11).Beware the 'Word-Faith' teaching that uses Biblical verses out of context!
6. Beware the wolf in sheep's clothing
You write: '... through reading your indepth website i felt i should respond. I belong to Ray Bevan's church, someone you were impelled to write about among others. the article used alot of scriptures to discredit the church leaders in question, but one scripture i have for you is matt 7;18 'A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.'. i am proof of the fruitfulness of this tree, i was a pathetic, mixed up kid with a drink problem before God called me to sit under the teaching of Ray Bevan. and im one of many. you cannot defy this scripture, this church produces good fruit.'
TCE: You say you have been 'reading' our website and refer to an 'article' [that] 'used alot of scriptures'. You don't reference what you read, but it is clear that you didn't read carefully or thoroughly and the complete truth is this: you have mis-used the passage by taking this verse out of context. At its most serious this is known as 'twisting', or 'wresting' the Scripture in some translations, but 'distort' in the NASB:
2 Peter 3:14-18 (NASB) - 14 Therefore, beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless, 15 and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, 16 as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. 17 You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of unprincipled men and fall from your own steadfastness, 18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.
If you partially quoted Matthew 7, namely verse18 alone: 'A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit' because you are 'untaught' we only seek to correct such error. First we should examine the whole teaching (not pick out part of one verse!) from Matthew 7:15-23. In our article - 'Savage Wolves' - we wrote, in the section on this page under the title:
'Word-Faith' teachers bring false prophecies too!
While many Christians try and uphold the truth, often zealously arguing and disputing matters of doctrine, there are also many others who, through reluctance to judge or criticise, are actually failing to exercise discernment. Added to this, while it is vital that we distinguish between truth and false doctrine, it is also inevitable that some disputes over doctrinal issues will result in division among believers. When Jesus said, 'Watch out for false prophets' (Matthew 7:15), He was showing us that we must be able to discern the minister or prophet himself, and not just his doctrines.
But how does one discern a false prophet? He does not arrive with obvious external features and is quite likely to resemble a mature Christian believer who demonstrates the fruit of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). The counterfeit is always hard to detect and forged paintings have passed the scrutiny of art experts and changed hands for huge sums of money before they were found to be fakes! If this is so on a natural level then, in the less tangible area of spiritual things, it is unlikely that a false prophet will be easily recognized. The Lord specifically warned against the many false teachers who would arise to lead people through the wrong gate and down the path of destruction (Matthew 7:15-20) :
15 "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? 17 In the same way, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Thus you will know them by their fruits.
In the context, please note the fruit by which these false prophets are known - it is their false prophecies, leading to false doctrine/false teaching - not necessarily their behaviour. For how do these wolves appear? They appear in sheep's clothing. In other words, they look like sheep and talk like sheep. They are often kind and even moral. They use religious terminology and act as if concerned for people and society, but in reality, they are wolves preaching a false way either in relation to salvation or sanctification or both. Those who enter through the narrow way must beware of these false prophets, who claim to guide believers but really practice deception. 'Sheep's clothing' is not to be regarded as prophets' garb, but is an evident contrast to vicious 'wolves.' God's people in all ages have needed to beware of deceptive leaders (Deuteronomy 13:1; Acts 20:29; 1 John 4:1; Revelation 13:11-14). 'By their fruits' means the 'prophecies' - and the God they present to you - produced by these false prophets, rather than the works they perform (which may also lead to false doctrines), since outward appearances may not cause suspicion. The test of the prophet is his 100% conformity to Scripture (1 Corinthians 14:37; Deuteronomy 13:1-5) and 100% accuracy of his prophecies. The comparison between the good tree and the bad, or corrupt, tree is also, clearly, that the one that is decayed, worthless, and unusable calls for its swift removal from the orchard (or the flock) lest it infect the others. But, ultimately, the 'tree' that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown in the fire of Hell!
But, too often, believers are judging on feelings rather than on fact (where fact is based on the Word of God and the evidence of two or more eye-witnesses). There is a simple and reliable test to determine if a prophet is speaking for God - He will give simple examples that come true in a reasonably short space of time, so that we can be certain that these are from God and not Satan. Only when we have evidence of their accuracy in this Scriptural way will God trust the prophet and us with more complex words which are for longer time periods. Agabus (Acts 21:10-11) is a good example of a short term, verifiable, prophecy. But I would warn that we have the Word of God with clear instructions of what to look out for in these end-times (which have been expected for 2,000 years!) and therefore we have another reason, other than the fact that they prophesy falsely, to know that the Gnostic ramblings of the 'Joyner's' of this world will come to nothing!
If we accept that the warnings of Jesus regarding false prophets apply to our day, and that even the 'elect' of true and mature believers can be deceived or misled, then it is important that we also realise that only those who have correctly understood the Scriptures and who are able to discern spiritually will recognise and discern a false prophet in their midst. Remember, the Lord Jesus Christ said clearly:
'Take heed that no-one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, "I am the Christ", and they will lead many astray'. . . . 'And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray' (Matthew 24:4-5, 11 RSV).
We would also warn you that your transformed life, while clearly amazing to you and those who knew you before you were transformed into a church-goer (and, do not doubt, we are praying that you have accepted the Biblical Jesus), on its own will NEVER prove the 'fruit' of Ray Bevan's ministry in any way at all.
How can we make such a claim without even knowing you before or after you joined Bevan's church? Because of these simple and irrefutable facts: EVERY organisation that has an appearance of being Christian transforms, orders, and disciplines every man or woman who joins them and gives them an appearance of being followers of the Lord Jesus Christ and His Gospel!
We have spent 40 years of ministry seeking out the lost in every kind of 'Christian environment'. See our huge list of deceptions on this page. The list is not all inclusive, for false variations of the truth regularly arise in every environment in every nation on earth. But if you don't believe us try and find massive fault in the behaviour of the average person who has spent a few years in the Mormon church, or with the Jehovah's Witnesses in their Kingdom Hall - or with the Christadelphians, or Freemasons etc.
All of these organisations bring something of Jesus' Gospel into the life of their members so that the majority are convinced that they know Jesus and His Gospel - no matter how weakly or how mixed up with extra-Biblical additions or so-called 'revelations' that might be.
This is why you need to examine a larger selection of Scripture passages instead of trying to use a part of a passage to prove Bevan and his church are 'the real deal'. Here is another Scripture you need to know where the apostle Paul warns believers:
2 Corinthians 11:2-4 (KJV) - 2 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. 3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. 4 For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.
It is a fact that the 'gospel' preached by 'Word-Faith' teachers, such as Bevan, teaches 'another Jesus' and not the Biblical Jesus - and 'another gospel' (cf. Galatians 1v6-9)!
So Paul is clearly warning about counterfeit, false versions of Jesus, the Holy Spirit, or the Gospel!
Several important passages of Scripture are used by the Holy Spirit to warn us of the clear difference between the Biblical Jesus and 'another Jesus' who is not the same - and two Greek words illustrate this clearly. In verse 4 'another' is the Greek word ἄλλος állos - pronounced al'-los - while the word translated 'different' is ἕτερος héteros - pronounced het'-er-os and Paul is emphasising how it is possible for disciples who knew the Biblical Jesus preached by true apostles might be replaced by 'another', a 'different' Jesus.
God's promised 'famine for the Word of the LORD' is in the world through 'Word-Faith' heretics and their allies!
Every false form of Christianity has 'another Jesus' who is not the Jesus preached and taught by Paul and his fellow apostles and, apart from one early heresy in the church, no one knew anything like the 'Prosperity gospel' of the 'Word-Faith' heretics until E.W. Kenyon re-introduced these 'doctrines of demons' (1 Timothy 4:1-3) and Kenneth 'Dad' Hagin taught it to others!
A question you should ask yourself as you read this - what is the prophetic record of the 'Word-Faith' leaders? Utterly appalling is the answer - 100% false prophesying! Check out Benny Hinn, for example. You will struggle to find a word of condemnation from denominations outside of 'Word-Faith'! But what about from in the 'Word-Faith' camp and their allies? Today we have men such as Michael Brown, Rick Joyner, Benny Hinn, etc. - who prophesy falsely. Yet the leaders do not speak out about these lying false prophets - and people such as those in Bevan's church will follow these men in an act of direct rebellion against God and His Word which clearly instructs us to reject those who bring a false prophecy - inevitably accompanied by a false 'god' - 'another Jesus' and 'another gospel'!
Read Deuteronomy 13 and 18 carefully and compare it with Jesus' warning in Matthew 7:15-23!
The kinds of sermons heard in a tiny remnant of small, faithful churches every Sunday, with Bible studies conducted by faithful Christians in mid-week meetings, are increasingly rare in the UK. There are people who have been in the Charismatic movement for decades, many seeking evidence that, if they tithe faithfully, God will repay them 'a hundred-fold'! They mortgage and re-mortgage their homes and their marriages split up as they lose everything - go to Tricia Tillin's website to read an example of this truth:
Beware of Savage Wolves and Satan's 'apostles' disguised as 'servants of righteousness'!
Many 'Word-Faith' and 'Charismanic' people have gone for decades without ever hearing a genuine Bible study where genuine exposition of Scripture is found. Not a quick verse or two of Scripture which is quoted and then used out of context - as they have taught you to do. In their extra-Biblical presentations, which I have often heard at Bevan's church, you even hear Papal Roman Catholic heresies approved and taught because the teachers are so ignorant they will clutch at anything that the 'the ignorant and unstable' (2 Peter 3v16) will accept as some 'wonderful, new teaching'! And then there is the worldly 'pop psychology' and hype artistry to entertain the lost sheep.
The minority of the faithful followers of Jesus who still go to the few remaining ekklesia (the real Biblical name for a Christian fellowship!), may not be hearing thrilling 'pop music' dressed up as praise to God - but they still have an abundance of food from His Word - just as it was in Jeremiah's day, despite the evil leaders they also had:
Jeremiah 5:30-31 (NASB) - 30 An appalling and horrible thing Has happened in the land: 31 The prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests (equivalent to 'Word-Faith' leaders!) rule on their own authority; And My people love it so! But what will you do at the end of it?
The idea of food shortage, or famine, in both the Old and New Testaments, is described by the inspired prophet Amos as a 'famine for the hearing of the Word of God':
Amos 8:11-12 (NASB) - 11 "Behold, days are coming," declares the Lord GOD, "When I will send a famine on the land, Not a famine for bread or a thirst for water, But rather for hearing the words of the LORD. 12 "People will stagger from sea to sea And from the north even to the east; They will go to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, But they will not find it.
The physical famine becomes a metaphor for a spiritual famine - but, while churches go down in numbers and faithfulness and close week after week (even become mosques - what a horror and abomination before God!) for the faithful remnant, as shown here in verse 12, there will still be great abundance - but not where they are looking! We are close to reaching the stage where faithful, zealous Christian married couples will get more food studying the Word together at home. But why not then evangelise your own family - and your neighbours and workmates? Even begin a house-group ekklesia as they did in the Book of Acts? And then, as you recognise the spiritual gifting of men and women in your ekklesia, appoint elders (pastors) and deacons as they did in Acts. This is so much safer than taking a barely known 'pastor' from another church or, heaven forbid, a young man from college who does not even fulfil God's criteria for such a role - and often comes with un-Scriptural baggage and false teachings implanted by an equally un-Scriptural 'Bible College'!
To the zealous and careful orthodox Bible student the 'Word-Faith' leaders are an open book of foolish heresies and laughable claims of 'signs and wonders' - and false prophecies!
One reason that ekklesia are shrinking and dying is that few Christians even reach the evangelisation stage, never having been really encouraged and taught to do something so radical - such as reading through the whole Bible at least once a year. Then, when you really know the Word of God you will truly recognise and know the God of the Word immediately and the 'Word-Faith' con-men will be utterly exposed to your eyes and mind! You may even find the Holy Spirit gifts you with such discernment that the demons that possess so many of these men are seen by your 'spiritual eyes'!
27. Beware if the goal of our instruction - love from a pure heart a good conscience and a sincere faith (1 Timothy 1:5) - is not brought
Under inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Paul also writes:
2 Corinthians 11:12-15 (NASB) - 12 But what I am doing I will continue to do, so that I may cut off opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the matter about which they are boasting. 13 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14 No wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is not surprising if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness, whose end will be according to their deeds.
These 'deceivers' all disguise themselves so that they cannot easily be recognised - and this is why Paul also warned the church at Ephesus:
Acts 20:27-31 (NASB) - 27 "For I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole purpose of God. 28 "Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. 29 "I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. 31 "Therefore be on the alert, remembering that night and day for a period of three years I did not cease to admonish each one with tears.
We would also weep with Paul knowing that, despite all the thousands of hours we have spent writing and witnessing to the truth of the Biblical Jesus and His Biblical Gospel, many who write to us will still continue in the deception we warned them of - despite being utterly unable to refute our arguments which are all solely Bible-based with occasional reference to historical facts and figures.
Not one 'Word-Faith' adherent who wrote to us has EVER replied and tried to refute us in any way at all (e.g. see Pastor Jeff Schrick) and, in this, they prove themselves to be even more lacking in the slightest notion of Gospel truth and the Biblical Jesus than cults, such as the Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses!
Matthew 7:15-23 (NASB) - 15 "Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 "You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? 17 "So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 "A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 "Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 "So then, you will know them by their fruits. 21 "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22 "Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?' 23 "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'
Follow the clear comparisons Jesus made:
Grapes are not obtained from thorn bushes;
Figs are not obtained from thistles;
True prophecies (from God) are not obtained from false prophets;
Every good tree gives good fruit;
Every bad tree produces bad fruit;
Every false prophet produces false prophecies;
The subject of the passage is false prophets and their false fruit - false prophecies - and not you as a fruit in any way you think your life might portray!
Finally, this Scripture - again from the inspired Paul:
Galatians 1:6-9 (NASB) - 6 I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different (ἕτερος héteros) gospel; 7 which is really not another (ἄλλος állos); only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! 9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!
Again, the two Greek word are used to reveal how Paul is emphasising how it is possible for disciples who knew the Biblical Jesus preached by true apostles might be replaced by 'another', a 'different' Jesus.
And he issues an extremely strong warning, an anathema (much used by the now fairly toothless Papal Roman Catholic Cult in her wicked past when she would have you tortured horribly and then burnt at the stake) which is Greek for a great curse (in Papal Rome excommunication).
We also wrote on this page under the heading:
3. 'Set the believers an example' (1 Timothy 4:12)
What are the real goals and what kind of results should we expect from a genuine ministry, whether he is ministering correctly in his role of pastor, teacher, evangelist or prophet (or any other role in the 'body ministry')? The Scriptures show us that we will see the ministry of a true man of God not only fulfil the requirements that God has set, but that it will also bear the kind of fruit that will reveal its true nature. We can examine the life of Paul as an imitator of the Lord Jesus Christ and who told us clearly that we were to follow his example as he followed Christ:
1 Corinthians 4:16 I exhort you therefore, be imitators of me;
1 Corinthians 11:1 Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ;
Ephesians 5:1 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children;
1 Thessalonians 1:6 You also became imitators of us and of the Lord, having received the word in much tribulation with the joy of the Holy Spirit;
1 Thessalonians 2:14 For you, brethren, became imitators of the churches of God in Christ Jesus that are in Judea, for you also endured the same sufferings at the hands of your own countrymen, even as they did from the Jews;
Hebrews 6:12 that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
Paul was a true apostle, the first great missionary and evangelist, the great teacher and expositor of Scripture, but he also bore the burden of the churches and prayed unceasingly to the Father 'that none might be lost' and to 'present every man complete in Christ' (Colossians 1:28) by preaching 'the truth which accords with godliness' (Titus 1:1). These are the tests to apply to the deceiver, the 'prophet' or leader who is pre-occupied with his own ego-trip and self-glorification! If any brought 'another gospel' Paul did not mince words and declared, 'If anyone …… does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching which accords with godliness, he is puffed up with conceit, he knows nothing (1 Timothy 6:3-4).
Suppose we observe all the signs listed earlier in the life and ministry of some man - could a false prophet do all of these things too? Is it possible that the outward appearance of both the true and the false prophet are the same, that Satan can so closely mimic God's work at times that people can be deceived? Consider the magicians at the court of pharaoh (Exodus 7-11) - they were able to copy the miracles God worked through Moses through their occultic powers - but only up to a point. This is a picture of the anti-Christ's deception in the End-Times. We must also remember that it is not just the miracles that are counterfeited, but the appearance of godliness (or an angelic appearance) that is also copied as far as possible, as the Apostle Paul warned:
14 And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is not surprising if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their deeds. (2 Corinthians 11:14-15; cf. Matthew 7:15-23).
What are the qualifications for spiritual ministry? What does God require of a man or woman to whom He commits the awesome task of speaking in His name? The Apostle Paul wrote clearly under the inspiration of the Holy spirit to give clear and detailed instructions as to the nature and character of a true shepherd of God's flock. In 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1:5-9 he declares, in the clearest terms possible, the standards that God requires in the life of an aspiring minister:
He must be the husband of only one wife; managing his own family well; having obedient, believing children; hospitable; above reproach; disciplined, self-controlled, upright, sincere; just, devout, one who loves what is good; gentle, sensible; having a good reputation with outsiders.
The true shepherd must not be:
a recent convert; addicted to wine; a lover of money; quarrelsome, quick-tempered or violent.
In these two lists the high-lighted attributes rapidly reveal deceivers who cannot keep up an unnatural front for long. The Spirit led leader may slip occasionally, but his 'crucified with Christ' (Galatians 2:20; 5:24) life makes his spiritual walk first nature to him.
Ray Bevan is not the 'husband of only one wife'! He has taken another wife and this makes him an adulterer who discarded his first wife. Sure, he claims she divorced him - but what went on before this happened? Did she challenge him to give up his 'Word-Faith' beliefs? Are his family all happy with his actions? The messages we referred to on this page ['An example of the kind of sneering and contradictory attack launched on anyone who questions their beliefs and doctrines can be heard from Ray Bevan's ministry (King's Church, tapes - 6th & 13th September '98)] reveal his unrepentant attitude to his heinous sin. His 'Word-Faith' love of money also exposes his true motives!
On this page we wrote under this heading:
Someone who is leading hypocritically is not going to be honoured by God, although God honours His Word even when deceivers are involved in the church, and this is what brings apparent fruit. We can also be deceived by results that look impressive at first sight but, after the initial burst of enthusiasm and 'after the Lord Mayor's show has passed by,' apparently fruitful works leave very little to show for all the labour put into them. Pensacola, Brownsville and Sunderland are clear examples of this. This is because deceivers and the deceived have been building on sand and not on the Rock that is our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 10:4). It is equally true that great spiritual accomplishments often have small and insignificant beginnings, and some of God's most effective servants have been despised and opposed by their contemporaries, but we must look beyond immediate results to know the value of any ministry. If we are really in God's will we will see the result in the fruit, as Jesus said, 'I chose you and appointed you, that you should go and bear much fruit the kind of fruit that endures' (John 15:16).
Do not be deceived by leaders who draw believers seeking to have their 'ears tickled' (2 Timothy 4:3) from other churches to make 'Mega Churches' - this is mainly how the Word Faith and Purpose Driven 'gospels' work!
It is clear from these Scriptures that it is not the minister's education, nor how gifted a person he is naturally and spiritually, but rather the kind of life he is living that is the important qualifying factor for ministry. Is he exercising proper authority in his home? Then he is likely to exercise his authority correctly over God's flock. Is he honest in his business dealings? Does he keep his word? Does he handle the Scriptures with integrity? If he is unfaithful to his wife, a lover of alcohol, cannot control his temper, or is a malicious gossip, what kind of standards will he set for others to follow? Can a minister successfully challenge the powers of darkness in another persons life, when he is yielding to the temptations of Satan in his own? There are leaders who 'talk the talk' but don't 'walk the walk.' Paul admonished: 'Let these also first be tested; then let them serve as deacons if they are beyond reproach.' (1 Timothy 3:10).
A second century Christian author in 'The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles' (the Didache) wrote: 'Not every one who speaks in the Spirit is a prophet unless he has the ways of the Lord. By their ways, then, the false prophet and the true are to be distinguished. . . . And even if a prophet teaches the truth, he is a false prophet if he does not practise what he preaches'. We would call such a man a 'hypocrite' today - but very few Christians would go so far as to label him a 'false prophet.'
The one who 'walks the walk and practices what he preaches', and whose life bears the fruit that only a 'good tree' can produce, is seen to be the one whose message is authenticated. We should beware of placing too much emphasis on the apparent 'godly walk' of a Christian because deceivers such as cult leaders have a surface sheen of godliness which their followers will point to - only close inspection of their behaviour 'behind the scenes' shows the real spirit leading them. I have heard many liberal speakers in Cardiff recommend the 'saintly life' of 'Mother' Theresa - but the truth is that she refused to give the true gospel of Jesus Christ to dying Hindus, and those of other religions, preferring to make them comfortable, as they suffered 'for their sins,' and ready for their journey into Hell while she collected 'saintly points' that would enable her to work her way into heaven (a false gospel!) and 'Saint-hood.' Theresa also refused to let her nuns read the Bible (where they may have discovered they were being deceived by the false gospel of the Roman Catholic Church), claiming that she would read, and be, the Word of God to them (anti-Christ doctrine!). Those who stepped out of line were subject to the usual brand of Roman Catholic beatings! The Apostle Paul warned clearly (1 Timothy 6:3-4):
3 If anyone advocates a different doctrine, and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness, 4 he is conceited and understands nothing; but he has a morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes about words, out of which arise envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions, 5 and constant friction between men of depraved mind and deprived of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain.
Jude also speaks of the false teachers in their midst as 'loud mouthed boasters' (Jude 16), and Peter describes them as speaking 'arrogant words of vanity' (2 Peter 2:18). These men will appear everywhere and we will recognize their 'international' and local ministries easily - because when you see them they cannot help but brag, in different ways, about their great worth to their church or the Christian community! This may come through the claim of a 'prophetic ministry' - or that 'Satan is afraid of them.' In contrast, Jesus came into this world as a servant who humbled Himself, laid aside His own glory, and even accepted as His Father's will the humiliation of death on the despised cross (Philippians 2:5-11). He never promoted Himself, although He eternally had equality with the Father (John 5:18-24), whereas the proud man follows the path of his father, the 'father of all lies' (John 8:44) - Satan!
The proud man speaks a lot about himself and his accomplishments, about his own experiences and victories. If God has graciously worked through his ministry, he must let everyone know because he loves to be in the limelight where others can see his expertise. He promotes his own cause and will happily point out the faults in other men's ministries, or in other churches or other brothers and sisters. Since he is now 'top dog', the 'captain of the ship,' at the head of 'the pecking order,' others must bow to his demands because their time and energy are much less valuable than his and their abilities are at his 'beck and call' regardless of the impracticalities of his requests. Even God Himself has apparently become his slave in answering his prayers (demands!), obeying his commands, and supplying his every wish!
The proud man may not always be right - but he is never wrong! He will seek to dominate others, dictating how they should run their lives, where they can work and minister and, sometimes, even how they should dress. He will happily give his opinion on such delicate issues as when and who you marry, or what to do with your money (1 Timothy 4:1-3):
1 But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, 2 by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, 3 men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods, which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth.
The 'Word-Faith' lie of not needing to seek the 'will of God' is destroyed totally by the clear example of our Lord Jesus!
Note also the terrible truth for false teachers of 'Word-Faith' who claim we do not have to seek to be in the will of God, or seek His will when we pray:
21 "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.
Note that 'will' is the Greek word: θέλημα - thélēma - pronounced thel'-ay-mah - and the use of this word in Scripture reveals the importance of seeking His 'will', being in His 'will' - and doing 'the will' of God - as many examples show!
And those who try to claim they were doing great works for God will then learn:
22 "Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?' 23 "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'
Prophesies, deliverance from demons, miracles not done in the 'will of My Father' will result in what???
Jesus will say: 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS'.
Never knew you! Why? Because, those deceivers like the 'Word-Faith' heretics, who treat Him like an errand-boy, 'PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS '!!!
The 'Word Faith' emphasis on material wealth and prosperity is also utterly un-Biblical!
It is ironic that Jesus declared that 'only he who does the will of my Father' will enter the kingdom of heaven. One of the false doctrines of Word Faith is that, since God̓s ability to bless us is supposedly determined by our faith, they cannot pray 'If it be Thy will' and, while they will quote John 14:14: 'If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it' they seem to be completely ignorant of 1 John 5:14:
'This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us'
Incredibly, Word Faith originator Kenneth 'Dad' Hagin claims that no such truth is taught in the New Testament:
'Because we didn̓t understand what Jesus said, and because we̓ve been religiously brainwashed instead of New Testament taught, we watered down the promises of God and tacked on something that Jesus didn̓t say, and added on something else to it: 'Well, He will all right if it̓s His will, but it might not be His will,' people have said. And yet, you don̓t find that kind of talk in the New Testament'. (Ken Hagin, Christianity In Crisis, audio-tape, Christian Research Institute)
Thus Hagin has also written:
'It is unscriptural to pray, 'If it is the will of God.̓ When you put an 'if' in your prayer, you are praying in doubt.' (Ken Hagin, Exceedingly Growing Faith, p.10)
If Hagin had not spent so much time absorbing and regurgitating E.W. Kenyon - sometimes word for word - he might have noticed that 1 John 5:14 clearly includes an 'if.'
In rejecting all prayers that are asked in God's will the Word Faith heretics boldly assert that such prayers are actually calling God a fool. But contrary to the claims of the faith teachers, Christ Himself prayed that God's will be done (Matthew 6:10: ... your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven'; Matthew 26:39: 'Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, 'My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.'), as did His brother James (James 4:15) in a passage that is altogether damning of the arrogant presumptions of the Word Faith heretics:
13Now listen, you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.' 14Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15Instead, you ought to say, 'If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that.' 16As it is, you boast and brag. All such boasting is evil. 17Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins.
The apostle Paul also prayed Scripturally (Romans 1:10):
10in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God's will the way may be opened for me to come to you.
And Romans 15:31-32:
31Pray that I may be rescued from the unbelievers in Judea and that my service in Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints there, 32so that by God's will I may come to you with joy and together with you be refreshed.
Furthermore, Romans 8:27 tells us that even the Holy Spirit 'intercedes for the saints according to the will of God'.
In this last example (Romans 8:27) the context demands this translation, but a careful Christian scholar should check the Greek words which are translated as 'if' and 'will' in these passages, for they will find these two words turn up as shown:
ὲάν - eán - pronounced eh-an' - is a conditional particle; in case that, provided, etc.; often used in connection with other particles to denote indefiniteness or uncertainty: - before, but, except, (and) if, (if) so, (what-, whither-)soever, though, when (-soever), whether (or), to whom, (who-)so(-ever).
[found in James 4:15]
And the other word is:
θέλημα - thélēma - pronounced thel'-ay-mah - meaning a determination (properly, the thing), i.e. (actively) choice (specially, purpose, decree; abstractly, volition) or (passively) inclination: - desire, pleasure, will.
[found in Matthew 6:10 ('The Lord's Prayer' - 'Thy will be done'!!!); 7:21 (see earlier exposition of Matthew 7:15-23!); Romans 1:10; 15:32; 1 John 5:14; 1 Peter 3:17]
Carefully notice the last quote:
1 Peter 3:17 (NASB) - 17 For it is better, if God should will it so, that you suffer for doing what is right rather than for doing what is wrong.
Can you imagine a 'Word-Faith teacher' howling in anguish at being made to suffer for being a witness for Christ through their speech or behaviour for, surely, their 'god' would not make them suffer, would he? It could not possibly be true that their 'god' might 'will' it so - surely? And anyway, since the 'Word-Faith' believer is a 'little god on earth', can't he just 'order' his 'god' to change his mind?!
Neither word occurs in this next extremely powerful and utterly irrefutable 'proof text' that man's will should always be subservient to God's will - because these are the Words of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Perfect Son of Man and Son of God who prayed in Gethsemane to His Father:
Matthew 26:39 (KJV) - And He went a little further, and fell on His face, and prayed, saying, O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me: nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt.
He expressed this clear request to His Father with other clear words in the Greek manuscripts while thélēma is used by Jesus a few verses later:
Matthew 26:42 (KJV) - He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O My Father, if this cup may not pass away from Me, except I drink it, Thy will [thélēma] be done.
Thus it is the faith teachers themselves who are acting like fools in failing to seek 'the will of My Father' (Matthew 7:21) - and failing to realise that the Sovereign God can do exactly as He pleases - and will NEVER be ordered around as if He were the servant of foolish, heretical men!
If you read our replies to Josephine Melrose (see this page) - where we included more quotes from 'Word-Faith' leaders - you will discover even more fully the horrifying truth that their false doctrine of rejecting asking the 'will of God', or 'if' it is in His will, utterly insults the faith of the Lord Jesus Christ!!!
Do the 'Word-Faith' heretics give God 'the whole tithe'!!!
What of the Word Faith movement's emphasis on material wealth and prosperity? How can adherents believe that this is what real faith is all about when, far from stressing the importance of wealth, the Bible warns against pursuing it?! Believers - especially leaders in the church (1 Timothy 3:3) - are to be free from the love of money (Hebrews 13:5), for love of money leads to all kinds of evil (1 Timothy 6:10). How can gullible people swallow this heresy when Jesus warned: 'Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions' (Luke 12:15). In sharp contrast to the Word Faith gospel̓s emphasis on gaining money and possessions in this life, Jesus said, 'Do not lay up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal' (Matthew 6:19). The irreconcilable contradictions between the Word Faith gospel and the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ is best summed up in the words of Jesus in Matthew 6:24: 'You cannot serve God and mammon [riches].'
You write: 'I prayer that you accept this as constructive, God loves you, but He also loves ALL these people you have set out to comdemn [sic] and shame. I understand that you feel you should warn people about false prophets, but before you try to destroy a ministry, check the fruit first!'
TCE: As we have shown, careful examination and sound interpretation of Scriptural 'fruit' does not exonerate Ray Bevan - or any other false leader. And God clearly does not love false prophets and false leaders or people who follow false teachings, but will bring them to judgement. It is never a fact of 'feel[ing] you should warn people about false prophets' - it is an absolutely and utterly Scriptural necessity for every genuine Christian leader to warn disciples regularly about false prophets! As we have clearly proven from Scripture, Jesus and the apostles were warning us while they had not yet finished their ministries that false prophets would be around in their day - and until God finally wraps everything up (as explained so beautifully in the Book of Revelation)!
There is a foolish idea in the contemporary church that God is operating differently under the New Covenant, but He does not change:
(Isaiah 61:8) For I the LORD love justice, I hate robbery and wrong; I will faithfully give them their recompense, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.
(Hosea 9:15) Every evil of theirs is in Gilgal; there I began to hate them. Because of the wickedness of their deeds I will drive them out of my house. I will love them no more; all their princes are rebels.
Just after the beautiful prophesy that John the Baptist would come and prepare the way for the Lord Jesus Christ (v1 - cf. Matt 11:10; Mark 1:2; Luke 7:27) we have a truly frightening description of the fate of men such as the 'Word-Faith' heretics:
Malachi 3:1-10 (NASB) - 1 "Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple; and the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold, He is coming," says the LORD of hosts. 2 "But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap. 3 "He will sit as a smelter and purifier of silver, and He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, so that they may present to the LORD offerings in righteousness. 4 "Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the LORD as in the days of old and as in former years. 5 "Then I will draw near to you for judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers and against the adulterers and against those who swear falsely, and against those who oppress the wage earner in his wages, the widow and the orphan, and those who turn aside the alien and do not fear Me," says the LORD of hosts. 6 "For I, the LORD, do not change; therefore you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed. 7 "From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from My statutes and have not kept them. Return to Me, and I will return to you," says the LORD of hosts. "But you say, 'How shall we return?' 8 "Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me! But you say, 'How have we robbed You?' In tithes and offerings. 9 "You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you! 10 "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this," says the LORD of hosts, "if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows.
We can just see a 'Word-Faith' teacher claiming that v10 shows that, if you tithe, God will bless you and 'open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows'!
But they will not want you to see His Words that demonstrate how the 'Word-Faith' leaders are robbing Him ('How have we robbed You?' In tithes and offerings') just a sinful Israel robbed Him by not bringing 'the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house'!
How many 'Word-Faith' heretics are blatant adulterers?!
Don't you think the world sees the Hinn's, Copeland, Meyer's and Bevan's (etc!) in their luxurious houses and mansions, jet planes, cruise ships, as they swan out onto their big stages dripping with jewelry in designer suits and dresses?!
Tragically, 'Word-Faith' leaders are so undiscerning that they allow the false doctrines of 'Replacement Theology' and the anti-Zionism of Rick Godwin and the 'Restorationists' with their anti-Semitic lies and attacks on Israel to mix with their 'churches'. They are so Biblically ignorant that they miss the Scriptures in which the Lord promises that He would again turn His grace back to Israel in His eschatological calendar (Isaiah 66:20-24, Romans 11:25-27, Isaiah 59:20, Revelation 7:4-8).
'Word-Faith' teachers - such as Ray Bevan - and adultery!
Men who fellowship with heretics like Rick Godwin, whose so-called ministry teaches that God has put asunder His relationship with Israel, such as Ray Bevan in South Wales and Ray McCauley in South Africa, are the ones whose own marriages get put asunder by their own sinful foolishness. Both divorced their wives to marry another woman and front page newspaper articles virtually labelled their churches as cults (and their doctrines support this view) on the testimony of those who left feeling like victims of exploitation. Strange that Bevan's church somehow allowed it to reported that they had 'no fixed policy on divorce and remarriage' when God clearly does and His Word reveals that He hates it, and those not hating it neither take heed of their spirit - and they are treacherous:
Malachi 2:13-17 (NASB) - 13 "This is another thing you do: you cover the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping and with groaning, because He no longer regards the offering or accepts it with favor from your hand. 14 "Yet you say, 'For what reason?' Because the LORD has been a witness between you and the wife of your youth, against whom you have dealt treacherously, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant. 15 "But not one has done so who has a remnant of the Spirit. And what did that one do while he was seeking a godly offspring? Take heed then to your spirit, and let no one deal treacherously against the wife of your youth. 16 "For I hate divorce," says the LORD, the God of Israel, "and him who covers his garment with wrong," says the LORD of hosts. "So take heed to your spirit, that you do not deal treacherously." 17 You have wearied the LORD with your words. Yet you say, "How have we wearied Him?" In that you say, "Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and He delights in them," or, "Where is the God of justice?"
We were at one service where Bevan made a big issue of 'tears ... weeping and ... groaning' over his unstated 'problem'. Should he have been surprised? What about his wife and family?
Israel had been such promising fruit at the outset, like 'the first-fruits on the fig tree', but they lapsed into terrible idolatry, and so they were appointed to barrenness and loss of children. God said the severe treatment of Israel was because of "all their wickedness in Gilgal." By this time Gilgal had clearly become a centre of false worship (cf. Hosea 4:15). Here they represent the worst elements in the land. Because they exchanged their glory for abomination, Ephraim was given this sentence (Hosea 9:16):
16 Ephraim is stricken, their root is dried up, they shall bear no fruit. Even though they bring forth, I will slay their beloved children.
This amounts to "No births, no pregnancies, and no conceptions!" God departs from a people, or from a person, when he withdraws his goodness and mercy from them; and when the Lord is departed, what can the people do except recognise their sin and repent? Even though, for the present, good things seem to remain, yet the blessing is gone if God is gone. The Divine wrath dries up the root, and withers the fruit, and the scattering of the Jews daily warns us that we should beware, lest we neglect or abuse the gospel - as the 'Word Faith' false teachers have done! It may be that God is withholding His hand as Britain wallows in hedonism and He intends only to smite so that the sap may be turned to the root, that there may be more root graces: more humility, patience, faith, and self-denial. It is perfectly just that God should bring judgments on those who slight his offered mercy. The meaning of "hate" (sane) in this context (v15) is defined by the words "I will no longer love them." God had nothing favourable to say of Israel in Hosea's time. Because of their "sinful deeds" and the rebellion of their leaders, God would expel them from his "house" (the congregation of Israel; cf. 8:1; 9:8), but there is always the promise of healing and restoration if a people turn to Him in repentance (Hosea 14:4):
I will heal their faithlessness; I will love them freely, for my anger has turned from them.
We can only pray that the fate of Ephraim does not soon befall the church in Britain and she turns to the Lord in repentance for His healing. Jesus made it clear to His disciples that those who love him will keep His commandments and be loved by the Father:
Joh 14:15 "If you love me, you will keep my commandments.
Joh 14:21 He who has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me; and he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him."
Joh 14:23 Jesus answered him, "If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.
And how do people show they do not love Him?:
Joh 14:24 He who does not love me does not keep my words; and the word which you hear is not mine but the Father's who sent me.
We have never received a reply from Tom - anyone in South Wales, or elsewhere, know if he still believes in the 'Word-Faith' deceivers?
Which commandments are we to keep? They are all still in the Bible including this one:
Exodus 20:14 - Thou shalt not commit adultery.
Leviticus 20:10 - And the man that committeth adultery with another man's wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.
Deuteronomy 5:18 - Neither shalt thou commit adultery.
Divorce in the books of Moses (Leviticus 21:7, 14; 22:13; Numbers 30:9) was initiated only by men, not by women, and Jesus spoke very clearly against adultery (Matthew 5:27-32):
MT 5:27 "You have heard that it was said, `Do not commit adultery.' 28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell. 31 "It has been said, `Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.' 32 But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, causes her to become an adulteress, and anyone who marries the divorced woman commits adultery.
The basis for divorce is not to be whimsical or frivolous and the man who desires to divorce his wife must show genuine evidence of her adultery. We are not aware that this was ever a factor in Bevan becoming divorced from his wife but, if she recognised the truth about the 'Word-Faith' cult (or any part of it), she would have good reason to be unhappy in her marriage. As well as promulgating the false teachings of Word Faith we are not aware that Bevan has ever repented of his adultery. If you have good evidence that he repented, and details of the discipline administered (which would include immediately stepping down as a pastor/teacher forever!), then please supply it and we will gladly publish it on the web-site.
This would be the pattern if those who had insulted God and trampled on His people repented of their deeds: Jesus puts loving discipline in very clear words when discussing the Seven Churches (Revelation 3:19): 'Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; be zealous therefore, and repent.
And since when did we set out to 'condemn and shame ... ALL these people'? If you are writing about Bevan and the many named Word Faith heretics then, by exposing false teachers and false prophets, we are following Scriptural exhortation, not our 'feelings' (Deuteronomy 18:20-22):
20 But a prophet who presumes to speak in my name anything I have not commanded him to say, or a prophet who speaks in the name of other gods, must be put to death." 21 You may say to yourselves, "How can we know when a message has not been spoken by the LORD?" 22 If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the LORD does not take place or come true, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.
The Bible contains these clear warnings from the Lord Jesus Christ: "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves." "For false Christs and false prophets will arise …" (Matt. 7:15; 24:24; cf. Acts 20:28-31). The strong words quoted above from Deuteronomy 18:20-22, besides expressing God's judgment that the false prophet in Old Testament times "must die," also tell listeners, "Do not be afraid of him." Rather than remaining fearfully obedient to false leaders the people who recognize false teachers and prophets should stop following them and start following the true Prophet, Jesus Christ (Deuteronomy 18:17-19). Anyone failing to follow the exhortation of the Word of God only bring condemnation and shame upon themselves.
Finally, we should point out that Bevan himself contradicts your claim. We have the clear record of Bevan criticizing other ministers, particularly in the Anglican church, so perhaps you should ask him why he has set out to 'comdemn [sic] and shame' and to 'try to destroy a ministry' himself without 'check[ing] the fruit first!' - particularly when the Word Faith 'gospel' he promulgates is 'bad fruit' and indefensible?
We accept that you wrote in sincerity and love and hope you will accept our constructive Scriptural reply to the points of your e-mail.
Sincerely in the Lord Jesus Christ,
(Continued on next page)