Readers of this blog are aware that I enjoyed the good biblical preaching at the recent Strange Fire conference. That was a conference that sought to refute the claims of the Charismatic movement, to rebuke the leaders of it, and to urge the brethren to pray for discernment so they will be able to detect falsity if it creeps in to their church (or heart).
The Charismatic movement is a movement which is based on the unbiblical notion that personally delivered prophecies, babbling tongues, and healing by men laying hands on the sick (sign gifts) are still going strong as they were at Pentecost and during the Apostolic era.
These sign gifts have ceased, and the preaching at the conference showed this. One of the speakers was Pastor Conrad Mbewe. Pastor Mbewe is pastor of Kabwata Baptist Church in Zambia, Africa. He spoke at John MacArthur's Strange Fire conference in Sun Valley, Calif., on Oct. 18, 2013. His first sermon was titled, The African Import of Charismatic Chaos. He has been observing the growth of the Charismatic movement in his nation and beyond, for over thirty years. He has personally been impacted by it, as he said, not just from books but in every day life.
His second message was titled "Are We Preachers or Witch Doctors?" In this sermon, Pastor Mbewe related how the African mindset of the lost person, having been drenched in witch doctor superstition, will readily accept the unbiblical precepts inherent in the Charismatic movement because the two are extremely similar.
The lost person is desperate. It is the default condition of the lost person. They are wandering, empty, their lives are void of meaning. They also have life issues that may be very difficult to deal with and because they don't have Christ, they do not have a lasting coping mechanism.
The sick, particularly, look for cures from any quarter: medicines, homeopathic, psychology, or spiritual remedies. The sick are often all too vulnerable and willing to grasp any person who claims to have a way, a cure, a method.
This is where Lucy Nduta comes in.
This woman is from Kenya. She calls herself Prophetess Lucy Nduta, and she preaches. In 2007, Worldwide Religious News printed the following, originally printed in the East African Standard
Churches Sow Miracles
"Nairobi, Kenya - The sprouting of countless charismatic churches in the country has heralded a new breed of church leaders and worshippers with strong faith in the power of miracles. An increasing number of Kenyans are turning to 'sowing the seed' (giving huge sums of money for offering and tithe) at the prompting of church ministers who promise them to expect prosperity. However, it appears there are 'men and women of God' who are out to take advantage of the unwavering faith and ignorance of worshippers. These are people who hide self-interest under the cloak of religion. They quote biblical verses to suit their intentions and convince the congregation of the need to give more in order to receive more."
What Lucy Nduta did was, in the name of Jesus, take sick people's money, supposedly pray for them, and lie to them they were healed. But it gets worse, because it gets more diabolical.
Nduta preyed on people with HIV/AIDS, a scourge that particularly affects the people of the African continent. Nduta would claim that she had the power to heal people suffering from HIV/AIDS through her miracle working prayers, and then herd them to a clinic/lab she had built near her church. The sick people would get tested there, and because Nduta owned the lab, she would have the workers give clean bills of health to these unfortunately trusting people, lab reports that were totally bogus. The people really thought they were cured, and sought no further treatment. And of course in gratitude they tithed heavily to Nduta. Then, they died.
The Africa Report stated, "The police later found out that the clinics were her own creation to lure people. She was consequently sentenced to two years in prison. Despite these revelations, thousands still fill churches each Sunday waiting for miracles to happen in their lives."
Nduta was sentenced in 2008 and got out of prison in 2010.
False pastors who shred the sheep are a scourge. When the verse says-
"Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves."(Matthew 7:15)
Ravenous means, 'Extremely hungry; voracious, Rapacious; predatory, Greedy for gratification'. Ravenous predators never stop. They eat and kill and eat and kill. That is what they do.
Nduta and now her son, are at it again. This report is from last week, Nov 4, 2013-
Self-styled prophetess Lucy Nduta Mwangi has called in to defend her activities and that of her son, another self-declared prophet Victor Kanyari. Nduta says there is nothing wrong with what she and her son have been doing adding that they will continue asking for what is called seed money.
The report above ends with the announcer stating that the Evangelical Alliance of Kenya will convene to discus and strategize how to deal with the sudden rise of fake preachers in Kenya.
Ravenous is what wolves are. So if you believe that opening yourself just a tiny bit to doctrines which false prophets bring, you are very, very wrong.
An appalling and horrible thing has happened in the land: the prophets
prophesy falsely, and the priests rule at their direction; my people
love to have it so, but what will you do when the end comes? (Jeremiah 5:30-31)
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