Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Reaction to the book "A Christian Rebuttal to Sarah Young's 'Jesus Calling' "

Sarah Young wrote a successful book titled "Jesus Calling." The book's blurb states,

After many years of writing in her prayer journal, missionary Sarah Young decided to listen to God with pen in hand, writing down whatever she believed He was saying to her.  It was awkward at first, but gradually her journaling changed from monologue to dialogue.  She knew her writings were not inspired as Scripture is, but journaling helped her grow closer to God.  Others were blessed as she shared her writings, until people all over the world were using her messages.  They are written from Jesus' point of view, thus the title Jesus Calling.  It is Sarah's fervent prayer that our Savior may bless readers with His presence and His peace in ever deeper measure."

I reviewed Jesus Calling here, and here

"Journaling" is a new kind of activity that the New Agers are calling a spiritual discipline. Beth Moore does it, that is, she listens for God and accepts the force that comes and guides her very hand into writing things that are not from her own brain. I am not making this up. You can learn more about why journaling to listen for God, is not a spiritual discipline but in fact is a false spiritual activity.

In any case, this blog entry is not about Sarah Young's book. It is about reaction to criticism of Sarah Young's book. Pastor Robert Allen King wrote "A Christian Rebuttal to Sarah Young's 'Jesus Calling'" and released it on Kindle. A slim volume, the book goes through

"Young's erroneous method of placing her own personal reflections and meditations from her quiet time with God into the mouth of Jesus, infusing them with a false divine authority that will mislead her readers. The booklet will also go over the false teachings and incorrect theological concepts that have been presented to the world under the guise of approval by Jesus."

The reviews were immediately negative, and oh so familiar in content and tone. Here are the titles of each review. The content of each review goes on in similar vein as you'd imagine from reading its  heading:

"Another person trying to kill hope"
"Arrogant and Jealous"
"How Dare You?"
"So Very Sad"
"A "Christian" Rebuttal?," [Note the scare quotes around the word Christian]
"How sad for you"
"What a ***"
"Pray for Alan King! He needs to hear the voice of God through Sarah Young's Jesus Calling!"
"stop the criticicizm" [sic]

The reviews ran 2-1 against.

Chris Rosebrough posted the following tonight:

I have no further deep theological insight into this, other than to remark that this is to be expected and to encourage you all.

First, the bible:

For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, (2 Timothy 4:3)

This verse has always been true since they were written 2000 years ago. It is no different today. Except it is.

In terms of speed with which the tide has turned, I've never seen it pile on faster than it is now, and today it is piling on faster than yesterday and tomorrow will be faster than today. Each day the heated rhetoric and the hate against Christians from people who call themselves Christians is getting hotter and hotter, higher and higher. Daily, it seems, the vitriol against speaking the truth in love is rising. No one seems to be allowed by the liberal or false element to judge, discern, criticize; nor to compare a speech, sermon, or work to scripture. None of that. We are supposed to accept anything and everything as long as the name "Jesus" is attached. Unquestioningly and wholly.

"They say to the seers, "See no more visions!" and to the prophets, "Give us no more visions of what is right! Tell us pleasant things, prophesy illusions." (Isaiah 30:10)

Please never stop preaching the truth in season and out of season. Please never stop comparing works to scripture to see if these things are true. Please never stop speaking up FOR Jesus, and His truth which He died to offer to the saints once for all.

Expect vitriol, but that is no matter, because Jesus is coming soon. And then, expect glory.

8 comments :

  1. Still a "child" when it comes to the bible, but I remember reading the above verse and thinking that it described our culture very well.

    This article reminds me of this verse as well: Isaiah 5:20 (NIV)" Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness,who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter." I say this only because once upon a time, truth was valued and people would rather not be lied to but these days it seems like what was up is down. Everything is just so backwards.

    Thank you for your vigilance!
    Marrell

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  2. I recognize those critical comments!! They are just like the ones I got on my posts about Beth Moore!

    It's as if these people are cult leaders the way their fans idolize them and refuse to look at their teachings in a discerning way.

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    1. Exactly, Glenn! I got my dose of them in the Rachel Held Evans thing. Goodness, they fail at discernment and that is such a loss to them. Their lives would be so much more sweet if it was more Christ-honoring instead of flesh indulging

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  3. Hello. I am so very thankful for all that you write on your blog and I am continuing to learn so much. So first of all I would like to express a BIG "thank you" for taking the time that you do to share the truths of Jesus Christ. It is very refreshing and much needed.
    Please know that this is not a criticism or anything negative, but I would appreciate some clarification if that's ok ? You mentioned that journaling is a new age activity and not a spiritual discipline. Sometimes I write out my prayers and then when, or if, the Lord answers these prayers I write answer at the side. I would refer to this as journaling what the Lord has done. Is this ok to be classed as a 'spiritual discipline'?
    Hope you don't mind my asking.

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    1. Hi Carol,

      Thank you for asking! I have been mulling this all day- it is such a good question. I decided to make a whole blog entry about it in length and depth. But to answer your good question here in succinct form, no, I do not believe your activity is a negative or false discipline.

      At the link I'd used referring to the Sola Sisters blog about journaling, what I'd said was, "You can learn more about why journaling, and listening for God, is not a spiritual discipline but in fact is a false spiritual activity." The key is 'listening for God.'

      Journaling can become a negative thing in two cases:

      1. When someone says that journaling is a spiritual discipline that's mandated. It is not. The Sola Sisters take issue with the phrase “spiritual disciplines,” because "it is a term from Roman Catholic monasticism which indicated a salvation by works. I question the idea that certain Christians can define disciplines for other Christians" they write and it is a really good article. I recommend you click on it to see the full essay
      http://solasisters.blogspot.com/2013/07/spiritual-disciplines-some-thoughts.html

      2. Journaling is dangerous when it is an activity used as a mechanism to hear back from God. When someone journals, and waits with pen in hand to 'hear back from God' a la Beth Moore or Sarah Young, it easily becomes a demonic activity. See the series at the right hand menu, titled "Examples of Channeling Christians, like Beth Moore".

      We hear from God when we read the bible, not audibly or internally and then write down what we think He said in a journal. That would mean that a journal is inspired scripture and is in fact a bible, and no one wants *that* to happen!

      Using a journal to keep track of prayer requests or as a way to honor God by remembering how He blessed you in an answer, sounds fine!

      Thanks again and I hope this answers your question

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  4. I am going to edit the sentence, "You can learn more about why journaling, and listening for God, is not a spiritual discipline but in fact is a false spiritual activity." to

    "You can learn more about why journaling to listen for God, is not a spiritual discipline but in fact is a false spiritual activity."

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  5. Elizabeth Prata, who gives you the authority to judge Beth Moore and Sarah Young?

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    1. Cheralyn, the bible does, which means the Holy Spirit. The bible says to judge teaching against the word, and mark those who fail the test. It is to your detriment to absorb any and all teachings without testing that they are from Jesus, first.

      Here is the authority:

      1 John 4:1
      Matthew 7:15
      2 John 1:10-11
      2 John 1:7
      Colossians 2:8
      Matthew 7:16
      Matthew 7:1-5
      2 Timothy 4:3-4
      Romans 16:17-18

      Plus many more. I have RefText enabled so if you put your mouse over each verse you can read it. Better yet, read them in context in the bible. Best of all, pray to the Spirit to give you wisdom and He will, without reproach. It is important to test the teaching from Sarah Young and Beth Moore, because they are not good food for you, and hopefully the Spirit will deliver wisdom to you on these matters, so you will see clearly what they are really teaching you. Blessings,
      Elizabeth Prata

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