Heresy explained

HeresyHeresy is often misunderstood as being absolute disobedience to God, but it is my opinion often something more subtle than that. I will start this essay off by giving you a real-world example. You see to understand the most dangerous forms of heresy one has only to see that if a thing is not of God it then falls into the category of Doctrines of Demons.

The example that I would like to give you is that of baking a cake. There are a few recipes that go into a cake. I am sure that Getting There would give me some great examples seeing that she recently proved her culinary skills in the kitchen with a wonderful batch of cookie. For the purpose of this essay I will grab the first one that I can find off the net

1 (18.25 ounce) packagefood cake mix
1 (5.9 ounce) package instant chocolate pudding mix
1 cup sour cream
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
1/2 cup warm water
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Sounds like a strange cake, but I won’t be a critic. This cake is called Too Much Chocolate. It apparently won the author some prize. Go see it here

Let me play the part of the food heretic. Lets say the I remove the sour cream because that just sounds awful to me and I am sure that something like sour cream does not belong in a chocolate cake.

If I was to bake a cake with this altered recipe would this still be the same cake that the wonderful woman won the prize for? No it would not. This, in theological terms, is the more extreme form of heresy that is practiced by the likes of the Jehovah’s Witness, Mormons, Christian Scientists and so on. They make it a habit of totally remove core doctrine from the bible such as the divinity of Christ and the blessed hope of all Christians, Heaven.

OK, now lets try something else, lets say that I like sour cream mixed with my sweet choc cake but I have a dislike for vegetable oil, but know that as a good baker I could not totally remove that ingredient because the cake might get too dry (guessing, have no idea). So I decide to place 1 ½ cups of this wonderful half rotten cow byproduct called sour cream and decrease the amount of vegetable oil in the recipe by half to ½ cup. I also decide to remove one egg and add 2½ cup of semisweet choc chips. So I have all the core ingrediants, but the cake I bake will probably not win a prize because it is not the same cake this lovely woman slaved so hard to create. This is the more subtle form of heresy. This is practiced largely in the Charismatic church, the emergent church and of course NCMI. This is why it is so hard to point out the error that is evident in these churches. They take one piece of doctrine, for instance tongues, and elevate it so high that it is hardly recognizable as what is really presented in the scriptures. They are messing with Gods recipe for man.

People have to change their approach to how they combat these churches. They cannot go in all guns blazing, expecting to find them sacrifices bunny rabbits on the alter, because the fact of the matter is; they won’t, or even be able to find anything that can totally be pinpointed to as outright heresy. They will answer to the same creeds as you, so they will worship, in theory, the same God as you, and every argument or debate that you enter into with them will come up naught. You have to point out to these people the mis-balance that exists, for that is the key to success in these cases. You need to point out to them that like them you are rescued by Christs blood, and that something like tongues not occurring in your life is no reason for them to deny you Christianity, but false tongues on the other hand is a very serious thing indeed, and I believe that we are to watch them, because if they are not from God then where are they from?

I hope this essay puts some things into perspective better enabling you to understand and indeed combat heresy effectively within the body of Christ.


Deliverance – Can a Christian be possessed?

There is divided opinion within NCMI as to whether a Christian can be possessed by a demon.  Within the church that I went to, the doctrine was officially addressed by the eldership and rejected, but this did not stop the congregants from continuing the practice of delivering Christians from demonic bondage.
After the rejection of the doctrine certain elders decided to carry on the practice within the church. The rest of the eldership objected to it and said anyone that exclusively attends their church is forbidden from being delivered. The elders that where for the practice instructed people to attend the church only in the morning and another NCMI relating church in the evening. This way they where not exclusively attending the one church and could still be delivered and indeed perform deliverance.
As you can image this caused a substantial split within the church and after some time it appears that all the elders have now agreed that Christians can be possessed by demonic forces.

What argument do they offer in defence?

When I have approached people about the biblical basis of such a belief I always seem to get the same defence in return. It is a defence that is not based on scripture, but it appears to be all they can offer.
According to them a person is like a glass or cup. If they are free from demons then they are empty. If they are possessed then they will contain stone a various sizes ranging from small pebbles to large stone. These stones represent the demons.
When someone receives salvation it is like the glass is being filled up very rapidly with water (the indwelling Spirit of God). The smaller stones are dislodged and washed out of the glass and the larger ones remain.
So according to their illustration, the Holy Spirit has a limited effect on some of the more powerful demons.

How does this belief affect a Christian?
Everyone that I met that holds to this belief have one thing in common. They believe that they are not responsible for any, or very little of the sin that they commit. They believe that the only way that they can stay sin-free is to be delivered regularly. I can’t help but place connections here again with the Roman Catholic practice of confession. I am sure that I am not the only one that sees the parallel.

Let no one say when he is tempted, I am being tempted by God, for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust” (James 1:13,14).

Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these” (Gal. 5:1921)

For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness” (Mark 7:21,22)

Well is it biblical or not?
I have to say that it is not. Demons can oppress, attack, and tempt from the outside, but Scripture is clear that a demon cannot indwell a believer and control him.

You, as a Christian become the Temple of the Most High; your body is the residence of the Holy Spirit. It belongs to Him, not to us or the devil, or any form of demonic power.

Titus 2:14 says that Christ redeemed us to be “a people for His own possession.” We are God’s property. To say that the devil can live in the body of believers makes nonsense of what the Scripture teaches:

“You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

The “He” is God, and He is greater than “he” that is in the world who is the devil. To say that a Christian can be possessed is blasphemous to the Holy Spirit, because is lowers his Sovereignty. Even to the point where he can’t deal fully with the servants of the devil without the help of men who perform deliverance. If the Holy Spirit is greater than the devil, then is He not greater that any demonic power that possesses you.