Tuesday, April 19, 2011

FAMILY OF FAITH CHURCH, THE TRANSFORMATION (SERMON ANALYSIS 2)

February 2011

This is the second sermon by Mr. Huizing that we have chosen to review. We don’t know when it was delivered. We listened by CD.

Mr. Huizing, Family of Faith, The Transformation.

Summary: Make the devil real nervous this morning. Let him know you’re here to do some kingdom business. Amen? We’re here to see some transactions take place. (Mr. Huizing takes the first twenty minutes to introduce the series, wherein he gives a speech to prepare the people to receive what he is about to teach. The transformation he has in mind is said by him to be on the platform of being born again.) The change that you are to experience is based, not on external forces and opinions, but an internal working in your spirit. If you think it, you ought to be able to do it. If you think it, you can do it. It’s just your body that’s holding you back. (Here he quotes Wigglesworth in a positive light, and then reads Romans 12.1, 2 from the KJV.) The body can be used for good or evil. How many of you know it’s not about you, but about God and his purposes—something to think about. You can operate in the good will of God, acceptable will of God, or perfect will of God. You want to stretch for this perfect will of God. You must not be conformed to the world, but transformed by the renewing of your mind. You can’t be in faith for healing and finances by letting your mind wander all over the place. These strongholds that say God isn’t interested in your finances or health must be pulled down. We used to think the wrong way about this. We used to think it was the will of God because it happened. The Bible is the opposite. You must determine the will of God before you pray. I’d love to use my thinking and faith in a higher degree than I’ve been doing. I believe I’m in the right place. I want to keep climbing higher. You are either conformed to the world, or being transformed. It’s a voluntary change. You are involved in it. It is not imposed on you. If you choose not to get involved, change will be done by force. (He reads the text from the Amplified version this time.) ‘Conform’ means to form habits comprised of your surroundings. The environment you’re in dictates how you think. But if it’s contrary to the Bible, you’re going to have to change. Your standard is higher. You have to do it, not just to show them, but because you want to. Are you out there? You know about tithing, sowing, and reaping. Because Abraham paid his tithe to God, God made him very rich. Don’t let external forces dictate to you, including styles, peer pressure, public opinion, and popularity. Don’t take things at face value, but faith value. Find out what God thinks. You’ll always be on the right side of the truth. (He reads the text from the Living Translation this time, and then from the Message, which he approves as the New Testament with an attitude.) You can sit in church, and think you’re doing everything just right, but not be involved in transformation. You’re going to have to go with what God says. You operate in two worlds. Just don’t get them mixed up. Did you get anything out of this? 

Remarks: Regretfully, there is precious little in this sermon to praise. Some of the statements made by Mr. Huizing that look fine on the surface do not amount to much because they are contradicted by his overarching beliefs, teachings, and methods. Three examples on this: (1) He tells his listeners to be strong in the word. But the twenty-minute speech he gives at the start is a setup to incline them to receive without examination what he is about to teach. The change you are to experience, or that you should yield to, is based, he says, not on external opinions and forces, but an internal working on your spirit. By the drift of the sermon we can tell what he means by this (though he cannot risk saying so up front.) He means that you should never mind the Bible (what is external) and yield instead to whatever subjective influence you can receive by applying his teachings and methods. And so his admonition to be in the word is just a pretence of solidarity that is calculated to bring your guard down, to get you to put your stones back in your pocket, as he says once. (2) He states that positive thinking is not spiritual thinking. Sounds good. But his teaching is that one should believe in the ability to do right now whatever the saint will be capable of when his body no longer restricts his soul. What is this but the groundless, impotent positive thinking that he states not to be a spiritual practice? His put-down of positive thinking (think positive and you’ll get what you want or achieve your goal) is just a trick to make one believe that his teaching is more reasonable and rational than positive thinking is, when in fact, it’s the same thing. His belief that you should just be able to do whatever you have a mind to do is exactly what positive thinking is: a vain hope. It is a procedure at odds with Scripture; and therefore no historical record will be found to prove its efficiency. The belief is nothing more than a hope in some sort of magic that doesn’t produce results. ‘Word of faith’ teachers do not prosper on account of this belief of theirs that you can do according to the yen of your mind. They prosper out of cleverness and treachery. This bizarre teaching on the present god-like power of the soul is gnostic, cult-like, and anti-scriptural. By gnostic we mean that it aims to initiate listeners into ‘a change of thinking.’ An ‘exchange will have to take place.’ Coming from Mr. Huizing this is scary language because the ‘change of thinking’ or ‘exchange’ is not from less understanding of the Bible to better, but from wherever you are in your understanding to the pastor’s ‘word of faith’ worldview, which contains the trappings of an unbiblical, inferior jesus rather than the true one, and who can, therefore, save no one. His teaching is not of the Bible; it is ‘word of faith’ theology, which includes an estimation of God and man that strikingly contradicts what the Bible shows the truth to be. God is demoted from who he truly is, while man is sinfully exalted. God is made creature-like, while man is made god-like. (3) He asserts that the transformation spoken of is for believers. This might sound like he’s just building on the gospel and that he’s not converting anyone to a gospel that is false. But it is nothing but a soothing sound. It is just a statement made to put the intended victims at ease.

Besides running contrary to Scripture (which is necessarily involved in most errors), what, more distinctly, are some of the characteristics we might discover a false teacher by? (1) A false teacher may run contrary to himself. His own kingdom, as Jesus would say, will be divided against itself. For example, Mr. Huizing passionately maintains that the transformation he has in mind is a voluntary change, something not imposed. Then, right after this, he states that if you choose not to involve yourself in it, change will be done for you. False teachers always get tangled up in contradictions like this.

(2) A false teacher may exhibit a lack of depth. After noting that there are changes that occur from babyhood to adulthood, the pastor remarks, “Would you agree with that?” Is this any kind of argument that needs to be proven and assented to? Who needs to be taught that changes occur? No one. A pastor who will not work on his sermon has nothing more profound to communicate than facts of life that are so obvious as to be already known intuitively.  

(3) A false teacher will misrepresent. He gives out a misrepresentation of Calvinism to set the listeners up for this exchange of thinking he wants them to make. The trick of misrepresentation in order to deceive is a device that goes back to the devil. You remember that the devil misrepresented Scripture to Jesus, and so Jesus resisted him. In the same way, even if you’re already convinced that Calvinism is evil, yet if someone misrepresents it, he should be resisted, for misrepresenting is a sin. Calvinism does not teach that God is detached from the lives of his chosen people. Neither is God’s detachment the outcome of such a system of theology. Calvinism teaches that God is so intimately associated with the world he created that not one sparrow can die outside the Father’s will (Matthew 10.29.) You see, all Calvinism does in this question of God’s relation to the universe is to assert that nothing is allowed to happen nor indeed can happen except by the will and ultimate purpose of God, which is precisely what the comment by Jesus about the sparrows is meant to teach. We are not drawing a line in the sand in this analysis or any other, as if to say that no one but a full Calvinist has enough understanding of the gospel to be on the right side with God. We are pointing out that a misrepresentation of anything, even of the devil himself, is a lie, and therefore is a huge warning sign that the man doing it is dishonest. Is a dishonest man good enough to lead people into truth? Is a dishonest man not a deceiver? Should we learn be taught the Bible by a deceiver?

(4) A false teacher will often, if not always, be obsessed with money. Since the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil, it is often at the root of so many of the false teacher’s crooked lessons. He will have to misrepresent the Scriptures in order to bring money up to the level of importance he believes money should occupy. Did God bless Abraham because of the tithes he made? That’s Mr. Huizing’s assertion. Is it the assertion of Scripture? First, we should lay it down that the actual blessings to Abraham: the land of Canaan and his physical and spiritual offspring—these were to be realized through his descendents. Therefore in his lifetime the blessing is the promise that begins its fulfillment in Isaac his son. The blessing at this point is the promise. And it’s primarily about spiritual riches, not material. Abraham will be the father of faith, as it says in Romans 4.16. Immediately after Abraham is first mentioned in Genesis 11, the LORD says to him, “Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: and I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing” (12.1, 2.) So what do we have? Before Abraham gives anything to God, God gives to Abraham the promise of his blessing. How can it be, then, as Mr. Huizing says, that God blessed Abraham on account of Abraham’s giving? Even if we go forward to Genesis 15 where we see Abraham sacrificing animals to God, these animals are only given for the purpose of Abraham ‘knowing’ that he should inherit the promise (verse 8.) The promise is given before this, in verse 5, which is a reiteration of the promise made in chapter 12, and which comes even before the first explicit mention of Abraham’s faith, which is in 15.6. Abraham’s blessing was on account of, not any tithe that he had made, but the promise of God, which, in turn, hinged upon nothing but God’s electing of him. If God had blessed Abraham on account of Abraham’s tithe, that would have been a blessing handed out in response to Abraham’s giving. But Scripture shows that Abraham’s giving was in response to the promise of God’s blessing. Mr. Huizing puts Abraham first. Scripture puts God first. Abraham giving in order to receive would be Abraham doing a legal act to get the inheritance. But Galatians affirms what the Old Testament narrative shows: that the inheritance was not obtained by the law. It was received by promise (3.18.) The New Testament substantiates what we have just shown the Old Testament to teach. Know this, for it is so much the case that it might be universal: a false teacher will revolve even the most precious things of Scripture around money. And the only way he can do this in front of a crowd that he fears have some Scriptural discernment is to quickly state what is contrary to Scripture, then skip to something else before anyone notices. This is why an analysis must be done: methodically, exactingly, conscientiously. It is the only way to expose the errors of a false teacher to people who don’t have the time or the equipment to inspect and work through what they just vaguely suspect might be wrong. The conventional reason why a false teacher teaches that the blessing of God comes on account of our giving is because he wants you to give to God through him. Like Judas, he holds the purse, or at least has the preeminence over it. Only those close to the top would know for sure who handles the purse strings over at Family of Faith. A caution must be given because church leaders who misinterpret the tithe do it for a carnal reason usually; they do it for private profit. Many members in churches like this one have heard of the research done on ‘faith-based’ profiteers by institutes like the one that is led by ‘the Bible answer man.’ This ‘Bible answer man’ has his faults, which we are ready and willing to show, if need be, in order to prove that we are not biased towards him. (We should all be equal opportunity critics.) But he is correct about this superstitious, predatory band of cheaters who crawl about the networks with their proud boastings in order to prey on simple people for financial gain. These heretics have their followers and imitators, like this Mr. Huizing who, we hear, even has his own television program now. This idea that Abraham was blessed because he gave is nothing else but a false principle for brainwashing people into participating in some ‘give-to-get’ scheme. You give to God like Abraham did, and God will bless you like he did Abraham. Therefore give, give, give, and to God through us. This is what’s at the bottom of getting you to believe that Abraham was blessed because he tithed. The selfish practice of giving in order to get is what is being taught by the sly, spurious lesson that Abraham was blessed because he gave. Do not miss that. And the teaching is in order to get your money. Do not miss that. The lesson of getting by giving does not exist in the life of Abraham. Tithing is never to the purpose of receiving. It is an act of worship that is done out of obedience to God from a willing heart. The idea of giving to get is at variance, too, with the spiritual nature of a Christian. We do not give to get, as Christians. That would be selfish, and selfishness is not a spiritual fruit, but a sinful tendency. We might receive on the heels of our giving, but we do not give to get; and God does not bless us because we give, but for reasons more profound than that, as the life of Abraham teaches us. False teachers misinterpret what the Bible teaches about the tithe, and they do so for avaricious reasons. They succeed among people who may be a little greedy themselves: people who give only, or principally, or even secondarily, in order to get. 

(5) A false teacher will usually have an ‘attitude.’ Needless to say, ‘attitude’ is a form of pride, a bombastic form that is antithetical to evangelical humility. Attitude is apparent, not only in Mr. Huizing’s mumbling imitations of objectors to his teachings, but in his nervous giggles. Pay attention to this body language, for the nervous giggles often come out just before or after some lie, slander, or snippy comment. You can notice the same kind of body disclosure among the modern atheists and liberal scholars on CBC radio. Especially if you have some grounding in truth, but if you simply practice to pay attention, signs by which deception may be discovered need not be missed. Body language is a principal sign. It always betrays the con man. Falsifiers operate according to the flesh, not the spirit. Therefore their body language is often in the foreground. You can corroborate their counterfeit nature by it. (It’s just a technique that confirms, nothing more; you know a heretic by what he teaches.) Think of a boy who shuffles his feet or hangs his head every time he tells a lie. It’s like that; but with a full-grown man the giveaway will be less overt, like some nervous giggle. Attitude, moreover, is not always understated. No training to spot attitude is necessary when the speaker brags about how much he loves it! Just note the reason why Mr. Huizing likes the paraphrase called The Message. It’s because it has ‘attitude.’ A fine reason to like what you believe is the word of God!

(6) A false teacher will glory in his own strength; he is a proud boaster who does not know his place. The wise Christian goes to battle with the devil in the manner prescribed in the Bible. In the Lord’s prayer, disciples are taught to say, ‘deliver us from evil,’ which, because evil is not a thing unto itself, we know to mean, ‘deliver us from the evil one’; that is, Satan. We filter Satan up through God for our deliverance, or else get sifted. And Jude, by the angel Michael, teaches us to rebuke the devil by the Lord alone (verse 9.) In contrast, this pastor rants against the devil without qualification by the Lord, which qualification should be: ‘the Lord rebuke you’ or some equivalent. Oh, yes, he’s there to ‘make the devil nervous.’ Or, “let the devil know you’re here to do some kingdom business. Transaction will take place.” Do you not hear the devil laughing at proud, ‘stand on your own’ foolishness like that? Why does he laugh? Because Mr. Huizing takes him lightly, and then steps out alone against him. And who wins? The devil does, and we have seen his victory in the false gospel preached by his unwary servant. This is the ‘transaction’ that takes place by standing proudly against a foe you are no match for. What about our faith overcoming and the Spirit that is in us being greater and verses like that? Does this not guarantee Mr. Huizing the victory? No, because faith is not exercised and the Spirit is not with us when we charge forward in our own feeble strength like Samson did when deceived by Delilah. And what makes you think that a pastor who propagates a false gospel has any faith and Spirit to draw from in the first place?  

(7) A false teacher will mock pure religion. ‘Pure religion,’ says James, is to “visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction” (1.27), which, of necessity, implies that these things ought to be done instead of sinful or frivolous activities. It is obviously necessary, if you preach the practice of pure religion to your people, to tell them to not do this and not do that instead. Mr. Huizing, though, ridicules churches that say ‘don’t do this and don’t do that.’ If you’re not telling your people to not do this and not do that, then your people must already be doing everything that is right. But can this be the case? Are there no habits and sins to reprove your people of? No misuse of time? Why do pastors not accuse their people of sin? May it not be because they are themselves engaged in what they should reprove? While we must point fingers at churches that view righteous conduct as if salvation might be obtained by works, it is not proper nor scriptural to denounce conduct without qualification, for conduct is, after all, an evidence of saving faith and part of our working out what the Holy Spirit has worked in. This pastor is too reckless for his own good. Pure religion irks him, and so he takes a drive-by shot at it, and by this random unkindness what do we see? We get a glimpse at the wolfish nature that he would rather keep covered up. To say don’t do this and don’t do that—how evil! By pointing his finger, maybe the pastor is violating his own non-judgmental precept? There are probably more programs than a stick could be shaken at over at this church—we don’t know. But get into this sermon, get real close and personal with it, and you begin to see where the heart of this church’s pastor is at. What is more necessary to religion than prayer? We must know the will of God before we pray, says the pastor. Why then, do we pray ‘thy will be done’ in and during the Lord’s prayer? Was Jesus wrong to teach us to pray in this manner? When we pray ‘thy will be done’ is it just to confirm what we already know? Or is it rather to give our assent to whatever the will of God might be, whether we know what that will is or not? We should know ‘before prayer’ what the will of God might be in particular matters, teaches the pastor. But the apostle says that “we know not what we should pray for” (Romans 8.26.) One might object: Maybe we don’t know what to pray for because we already know his will. But if this be true, why pray at all? There is need, then, only to praise. Listen closely, we know a man is a false teacher when he comes against the most basic things that even a child in Sunday school should get right—when he comes against the very essentials of religion and the teachings of Jesus Christ. What further proof do we need? Let’s elaborate on the proof we have. Who could have had more reason than the Lord Jesus to assume the will of God before prayer. This is God in the flesh! If anyone could have been bold enough and holy enough to do this, it would have been him! ‘Would you agree with that?’ But what does his life teach us? Let’s go into the garden and see. “Father, if thou be willing to remove the cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” What! Jesus had to pray to ‘know’ the will of God? Here we have a perfect Man who is also God, and he goes in prayer to the Father in order to seek his perfect will, and yet Mr. Huizing counsels imperfect sinners to just know the will of God before prayer! What outrageous, proud, ignorant, mischievous advice! This pastor stumbles right face on against the greatest Teacher the world has ever known, and who just happens to be Almighty God! And it is nothing to wonder at. There is no riddle at all to this. After all, Jesus is not sinless to him, is he? How much respect do you have for a man whom you believe to have been a sinner just like yourself? The teachings of such a man may be questioned. The pastor is just living up to his low opinion of who he believes Jesus to be.

(8) A false teacher may expose who he really is by siding with the enemies of God. In his desperate enthusiasm to convince the listeners that they should have such power in themselves to do whatever they design to do, Mr. Huizing clumsily ends up using, for an example, the power the people at the tower of Babel must have had! Yes, let’s covet the kind of power that was cursed by God! There’s a fine idea! (See Genesis 11.) While trying to snare people into believing this think-it: you-can-do-it lie, he ends up laying a trap for himself, and gets caught on the side of God’s enemies! “In the net which they hid is their own foot taken” (Psalm 9.15.) Or to put it more quaintly and perhaps more memorably: Frenzy to forward falsehood will fit the fellow for his fall. What could be more embarrassing and revealing than for a professing Bible teacher to be found on the side of wicked sinners cursed by God into confusion for their attempt to make a name for themselves? Mr. Huizing is a true Babylonian. He is full of confusion because of his own attempt to be a ‘somebody.’ Self-building is more important to him than the foundation of a sinless Christ. For those who would like to listen for themselves, this comment on his spiritual ancestors at the tower of Babel comes in shortly after the twenty-minute mark. We’re sure the pastor would be willing to hand out CD’s to whoever wants them. He’s very eager to self-promote. Listen to the sermon, read the analysis over once again, and we believe that if you are after the truth you will discover that Mr. Huizing is a danger to souls and that truth must be obtained through some other agent than him. In our regular prayers, do we not beg from God protection from deception? “Pull me out of the net that they have laid privily for me” (Psalm 31.4.) Friend, whoever you are, do you not see that your prayer has been answered through this analysis? Mr. Huizing fits the profile of a deceiver caught in his own net. He’s the man God would save you from. Pray to God for open eyes and a willing heart.      

Conclusion. The only plan in this sloppy sermon is the plan to deceive. This is a shallow but devious sermon by a man who is in love with himself and wise in his own eyes. He even asks for a pat on the back at one point! “Did you get anything out of this?” he asks at the close. Yes, but unfortunately, none of it was good. You can sit in church, he warns, and think you’re doing everything right, yet still not be involved in transformation. Let’s hope that he’s right about his hearers not being involved in transformation, for the transformation the pastor has in mind is to make clones of himself and Kenneth Hagin, neither of whom is orthodox enough to handle the shoe-latch of a Sunday school teacher. “If you’ll dig a little deeper,” he promises, “you’ll know what the truth is.” We’ve done that, and discovered that he is not in the truth. Be ye transformed by the renewing, not ‘removing’ of your mind, he counsels. We counsel his people to apply this advice at least as diligently and faithfully as we have. By not removing our mind we have learned a lot about how Mr. Huizing’s mind conflicts with the mind of Christ. Mr. Huizing urges his listeners to think, to not just have faith, and to not just repeat things ‘parrot-like’ without knowing the meaning. This is the precise opposite of what he imposes. The exhortation is just put in there to gloss over his effort to brainwash. “An opportunity will always come to anybody,” he says. We all know from experience and observation that this rhetorical statment is a lie. Do many sinners not die before another opportunity comes to hear the gospel? Do many Christians not die, even charismatic church members, before another opportunity is given to quit their sinful lust for signs and wonders? If you are part of this church or one like it, and are reading this right now, you have an opportunity to trade the Mr. Huizings of the world for the true gospel. If you are believing, as he does, that Jesus suffered in hell and got reborn, etc., then you are believing a false gospel that will not get you into the kingdom of God and that will seal your soul in the tomb of hell forever. You might not receive another opportunity to deal with this. Do not be conformed to your surroundings, argues the pastor. Think of what he is conforming you to. It’s no better than conformation to the world! In fact, it’s even worse, for hypocrisy is worse than worldliness. You are being conformed to pride, greed, and a Babylonian mindset that is at odds with how you must be reconciled and made acceptable to God. If you attempt to come to God Almighty through a gospel that has a corrupt jesus for a saviour and a methodology that is more like gnosticism and wishful magic than Christianity, then you will be turned away at the entry point of God’s eternal place of rest. You will without question be turned away if you think of entering on the basis of beliefs like these, or else the whole revelation of God is nothing but a lie, which, of course, it is not. You cannot enter into God’s comforting presence except through the Man Christ Jesus, who is a ‘stone of stumbling’ and a ‘rock of offence.’ What does this mean? There are those who stumble at Jesus Christ: who stumble against who he actually is and what he actually did. You must realize that stumbling gospels exist, and you must make it your aim to end up as one who does not stumble, for those who stumble do not enter in. They fall short; they are cast down and cast out; they are rejected as spiritual lepers who have never been cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ. With Mr. Huizing’s gospel as the way of salvation, you will be rejected, no matter how self-assured you may be about being saved. All your assurance of salvation, if this gospel of his is yours, is the delusion of Satan. And this delusion, if you obstinately and ignorantly continue in it, will result in the judgment of a righteous God upon you for refusing to acknowledge and adhere to the gospel of Jesus Christ in all its unmingled purity.

To help you a little further, you may keep an eye open for the upcoming reports we have done on books that are routinely recommended by churches like this one. This pastor seems to like Wigglesworth. See the book reports on him. And there is this book by a man called James B. Richards. He was certainly recommended by some authority at Family of Faith a few years ago. See the book report on that. And may God bless you with an understanding and unbiased heart to receive this criticism of Mr. Huizing’s sermon and the honest reporting of some books that this man would no doubt praise.

Now just one more thing. Maybe you’ve never heard anyone raise such an alarm about Mr. Huizing before. But many alarms have gone out to warn of false teachers just like him and the ‘word of faith’ that is preached by this wild band of bombastic, empty boasters who preside over Mr. Huizing’s thoughts. (There are excellent articles available to anyone who wants to know; they are free to peruse over the internet. Email me if you wish to be directed to the right place. Or maybe I will provide a few links.) But why hasn’t any orthodox pastor in Red Deer given warning? Maybe some local pastor has; however, not to our knowledge. Most will not because there is this unbiblical unity in the Ministerial that makes it too uncomfortable for orthodox pastors to speak out. They will not rock the boat of diplomacy for the sake of being the ambassadors the Bible calls them to be. Do you see the difference here? A diplomat cultivates peaceful relations. An ambassador delivers the message of his sovereign. Pastors are called to be ambassadors who give out the full counsel of Christ, not diplomats who cultivate relations with persons who oppose that counsel. It is unpopular to be a faithful ambassador of Jesus Christ. Most pastors today do not have the backbone for it; neither have they the heart; and so one begins to deduce that they certainly do not have the mind, not the ‘mind of Christ.’ To speak as boldly as a pastor ought requires a spirit that glows just a bit for devotion to Jesus; really, it should glow so much that even prison might be risked for the sake of defending his truth and objecting to distortions of it. The apostle Paul’s heart and practice was “to open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in bonds” (Ephesians 6.19, 20.) The apostle not only practiced the hard line that he preached, but preached the same hard line to the men ordained through him. About ‘seducing spirits’ and ‘doctrines of devils’ he said to Timothy, “If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ” (1 Timothy 4.6, emphasis added.) This is a very noxious truth to all orthodox pastors in this city who are too possessed of the spirit of fear to expose and oppose gospels that are twisted into perverted forms. Far from risking jail for the gospel they claim to be saved by and that they supposedly labor to proclaim, they will not even risk their ‘nice’ reputation. They will not utter one word that might offend because the ‘offence of the cross’ (Galatians 5.11) is not part of their theology. That’s what it seems like, anyway. They must be ‘nice guys’ before anything else, even at the expense of good ambassadorship. And so it is left up to unimportant, insignificant, self-educated men like myself to warn churchgoers of what they’re getting themselves into when they attend a ‘place of worship’ like the Family of Faith, which, in truth, at least behind its pulpit, is a ‘synagogue of Satan.’ May the Spirit of God take that troublesome truth right into your heart! Of what use is a church to God so long as her pastor nurtures and perpetuates an idea of Jesus that God’s word condemns? Was Jesus reborn from sin or wasn’t he?—: this is a question (not the only one) whose answer ought to decide each member to continue or not in this Family of Faith.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

FAMILY OF FAITH CHURCH, FIRST THINGS FIRST (SERMON ANALYSIS 1)

January 2011

This is the first sermon of Mr. Huizing’s that we have chosen to review. It was preached during the month of January. The year is not specified. We listened by CD.

Mr. Huizing, Family of Faith Church, First Things First.

Summary: We are in Colossians 1. This is about the law of the first. We must not judge by appearance only. We are to operate by revelation knowledge, which is not just according to what we see. The Spirit can make a verse to be custom-made for your situation. Jesus is the First and the Last. It starts with him and ends with him. God loves him. This is part of the answer. But he got there by conquest. He fought the battle for every human being. He has given the victory to you and me. Since you have embraced Jesus, you have victory over sin just as Jesus has. The devil has been made into nothing. If he has power in your life, it’s because you have given some of your victory over to him. I want to read the Scriptures now because the more I know about Jesus, the more I know about me. What he did, he did not do just for himself, but for the Church. Jesus is the prototype. Can you say ‘amen?’ In order to fulfill the plan of redemption, Jesus had to go to the lowest hell to pay the penalty. If it wasn’t Jesus, somebody else will have to pay the price. You are joint-heirs with Jesus. The rightness of position, or standing, has been bestowed inside of you. Jesus is before all things. God didn’t just create angels, as beautiful as they are. No, he created a human race, not merely preprogrammed to act as robots do. He wanted a family to serve him because they want to. He’s looking for a whole lot more than a people with fire insurance. He’s looking for heart. Everybody say ‘revelation knowledge.’ I’m not saying to know nothing by sight. But what you can know by the Spirit of God trumps all that. God started a brand new race from the lowest hell. By his power and voice, God gave Jesus a new birth. And he has the keys of hell and death. And whatever he has, you’ve got as well. You are not just Joe-Average. Some people are successful, not just because they know what to do, but because they know what to do first. (He gives examples.) “Can I have a grunt at least, from somebody.” (He goes into a large digression about his testimony.) We all have an inner compass to know the times. If you know the times, you know what to do first. We have the records of people who did this. What is the first command? It’s not what you think. The first one is, ‘Hear, O Israel.’ This is the first commandment. This is the first sequence, the first part. The blessing depends on what you hear. Everything depends on your hearing. A lot of people want healing, but not hearing. They want something quick. Jesus had the ears of the learned. You can cultivate hearing. If you are a sheep, you hear Jesus’ voice. When you hear, more is added to you. The measure depends on what and how you hear. Remember the lady in Elisha’s day? She was in charge of that miracle. It was according to how many pots she gathered to be filled. God helped her. Don’t you think he can help you with your finances? How do you hear? How do you measure? God never put a measuring stick on it. You might miss a few things if you don’t pay attention to what’s first. You might miss, not just some nuggets of understanding, but some nuggets of health, healing, and the prosperity God intended you to operate in. “Are you out there?”   

Remarks: Mr. Huizing keeps to his theme. He makes things fit in with it just when we’ve begun to suspect he’s gotten off track. We are often relieved just in time. The sermon runs along nicely. It is well put together. And the sound his voice makes has a pleasant note from Europe in it. His examples on knowing what to do first are good, except for the one about the coin in the mouth of the ‘first’ fish. That one doesn’t connect. He does well with the illustration of faith from the life of the woman whose oil was miraculously increased according to the amount of vessels she gathered. This Old Testament event was used to good advantage, notwithstanding the fact that he does not seem to realize (note his disparaging comment) what a precious commodity oil was in those days. Another careless comment concerns how salvation is some sort of ‘fire insurance.’ We do not object to him saying this, necessarily, but he should be more ready to sacrifice the carefully contrived word when no fitting place can be found for it. Otherwise, the prepared zinger ends up doing a large flop. Another minor error concerns this idea of his that buildings are now being built to last for fifty years instead of the thousand of long ago because of a general increased awareness of the end-times being upon us. This sounds like nothing more than haphazard guesswork. Are the architects of the world studying Hal Lyndsey and Grant Jeffrey? This odd comment about buildings being no longer framed to endure seems to have been made to show up some bit of scholarship. But a bizarre-sounding opinion, especially without one piece of evidence put forward in support, is not convincing of anything except how na├»ve Mr. Huizing supposes his audience to be. Yet another error concerns his twisting of Scripture to make a verse fit the subject of his sermon. Since he has decided that hearing is one of the ‘first things,’ he tries to make the prelude to the first commandment (‘Hear, O Israel’) into the actual first commandment. We suspect that he does this, not just for the sake of his subject, but also to fulfill his aim to come up with something original. But novelty hunting is not a virtue, for the true meaning of Scripture is made nebulous by it. He kicks up more confusion by the following error: By juxtaposing angels and humans in order to point out human freedom of choice, he leaves the impression that the angels have no free will. Still more to the negative, and lastly regarding what we would call secondary faults: His interactive style is unprofessional and unholy, by which we mean, solicitations like these: ‘Right?’—‘Can I hear an amen?’—‘Are you out there?’ Begging reaction is a sure sign that the sermon and the preaching need more substance and spirit than the content and the speaker are able to generate. It also indicates that the Holy Spirit is not at work, for if he were, these odd wake-up entreaties would be unnecessary. Dialogue with the audience is the job-description of wedding-party hosts, not Bible teachers. It should not be practiced by those who have a message from God to present. There is not a lot of joking going on in the sermon, though, and we are thankful for this. But there is an unsanctified mood about Mr. Huizing, which is very unattractive. What we need is something like dignified gravity. Though these faults are not faults of the first order, they should serve to put the listener on guard, for the pastor who commits them is too casual in his sermon preparation and sometimes crooked in his handling of the word he’s supposed to be most reverent of. Since lesser faults are usually the promise of larger faults to come, it is valuable to be on the watch for them, for they make you wary.

Now to errors more serious. Although we hear the name of Jesus in this sermon, our first major concern with it is how the materialistic life on earth seems to be Mr. Huizing’s chief interest. Healing, finances, and prosperity are more popular with him, perhaps than anything else, which we have seen much substantiating proof of in the articles he occasionally writes for the newspaper. The book of Proverbs (chapter 3) counsels us to seek after understanding, not precious metals (like your new cars and trucks.) But when Mr. Huizing counsels the listener to pay attention to the law of the first, what does he say? He cautions the listener (see the close of his sermon) to be mindful of the law of the first, for fear of missing, not just nuggets of understanding, but nuggets of health, healing, and prosperity. You see, if he really had first things first, his caution would be to not miss, not just healing and prosperity (the lesser things), but even understanding (the higher thing.) Contrary to Proverbs and the Bible at large, this message is materialistic and man-centered, not spiritual and Christ-centered.  He even sounds like Joel Osteen himself (the great prosperity speaker who has no gospel) when he says that ‘it was God’s plan for her life.’ If listeners would just note with care, they would spot his man-centered object even where they least expect to find it. Mr. Huizing confesses, early on, that he wants to get to the reading of the Scriptures now “because the more I know about Jesus, the more I know about myself.” Jesus is here stated to be the means to the end of knowing the self. Folks, this is why we have historical creeds and confessions: to save us from making our selves the end. We certainly will know ourselves better by knowing more of Christ. (We will know more about how sinful we are.) But knowing ourselves is not why we are to seek after knowledge. What reader of the Bible could honestly disagree that the grand end of man is precisely what the Westminster Confession states it to be: ‘to glorify God and to enjoy him forever.’ You see, though we are to enjoy, it’s about the enjoyment of him. But you can expect a ministry so minded with the earthly things of bodily healing and finances to be, ultimately, about the self, not about God or Christ, and not even about the Holy Spirit, the person of the trinity who seems most favored and talked about among charismatic pastors. The emphasis in Scripture is not the body, not finances, and not the self. When these earthly things are appealed to in Scripture, it is to the purpose of directing us to, and reminding us of, a higher life and a more modest way.  Jesus Christ, the ‘Man of Sorrows’ who had not where to lay his head, what does he instruct us to pray for materially but daily bread? Why all this talk of prosperity then? It is not wrong to prosper in health and wealth. The point is that if these things have their place, they belong to the domestic, market, and industrial spheres of life. The pastor of a church is supposed to take us up to higher aspirations and hopes than that. To principally focus on prosperity and strength is to worship the self. A focus on the Saviour whose spiritual prosperity came about through his obedience and death, which work was for our eternal benefit—this is biblical worship. Who should care to hear anything at all in church about the mundane prosperity that might be acquired by our selfish care? Are there not enough seminar gurus and self-help books to excite our selfish cravings? Should we come to church to get excited for a prosperity that is ready to perish? Or should we attend in order to hear about our eternal inheritance? “For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come” (Hebrews 13.14.)

Our second major concern is this whole obsession of his with ‘tapping into’ the will of God. This is a fault that begets even more faults. He confidently alludes to instances in the Bible in the hope of gaining some support for this Gnostic practice. But did Joseph ‘tap into’ God’s will, like Mr. Huizing says? Or is the truth not that God revealed himself to Joseph? There is a knowledge ‘out there’ that you can tap into, he says. You see, this knowledge is not necessarily in the Bible, but ‘out there.’ This is his meaning. Anyone who would get you seeking after spiritual knowledge that’s just ‘out there’ is setting you up for a rendezvous with revelation of a satanic sort, even if he doesn’t mean to; that is, you’re being set up to receive a communication from demon spirits, who, like their chief, go about masquerading as angels of light. Are evil communications of this sort not happening in charismatic churches? Think of all these ‘prophecies’ that don’t come to pass as predicted. Think of all these ‘healings’ that can never be verified. Many of these questionable claims originate from spontaneous liars and then get popularized by gullible parrots; but some other of these claims no doubt come through such liars by evil spirits. It seems that multitudes of church-goers just don’t want to take the Bible at its word. Prophets that prophesy falsely are not sent by God (Jeremiah 14.14.) Why listen to one of these ‘prophets’ even once more after his prophecy has failed? If God once hung the death penalty over the head of false prophets (Deuteronomy 18.20), is that not a hint that false prophets ought to be shunned today? If a pastor shrugs his shoulders about false prophecy in his church, is that pastor discerning and obedient enough to be taught by? We are supposed to derive our hope from what God has written (Romans 15.4) and get our growth from the word of God (1 Peter 2.2.) But then church people are anxious to sit under pastors who tell them to go looking for knowledge that is ‘out there.’ We are supposed to take the interpretation that comes out of the Scripture text. This seems obvious enough; otherwise, why did God write anything at all? If he wrote, then what he wrote must mean a certain thing. But then church people believe flighty pastors who promise verses that are ‘custom-made’ for them. There may be many applications to, but only one interpretation of, a verse. Otherwise, how could we know what anything means? If a verse means many things to many people, and these things conflict, then who’s to say what’s right and what’s wrong? Knowledge that is ‘out there’ is not likely to be what’s in the Bible, and it is likely to be in conflict with what God has given as our guide. 

Our third major concern is what Mr. Huizing states his position on the atonement to be. No doubt his position on this must be given out more fully by him elsewhere. All we can say is that he does state enough about it here to make us more than skeptical about whether he is sound on this all-important doctrine. First, he says that Christ descended into hell. By itself, this belief is nothing to worry about. Whatever one might believe regarding what this descent involves, it does not necessarily end up being a heresy. Second, he believes that the debt of sin was paid by Christ in hell. This is more serious. The plain and sweeping evidence is that man’s debt was paid, not in hell, but on the cross when the words ‘it is finished’ were uttered by the Lord. The context preceding that declaration is strongly supportive of this finish on the cross being thorough, complete, and once-for-all. “Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled,” it says (John 19.28.) If Jesus paid the penalty of sin in hell, why does it say that peace is made “through the blood of his cross”? (Colossians 1.20.) Why does it say that he “bare our sins in his own body on the tree”? (1 Peter 2.24.) A trick is used in this sermon to force listeners to accept the lie that Jesus paid the debt of sin in hell. If he did not pay it there, the devious pastor says, then the sinner will have to pay. But the truth is that payment made on the cross will do just fine. In fact, there is no other way. Our argument is no trick because it is just the truth of Scripture. He who looks for an atonement in hell is not cross-centered and nowhere near the place where redemption was actually accomplished. There is a very real danger of believing in the wrong place for salvation. And this matter of where atonement was made is a case in point. Missing the truth in such a cardinal way is what we mean by the word ‘heresy.’ In the voice of a contemptuous objector to his opinion that atonement was made in hell, Mr. Huizing sneers out something like, ‘I don’t believe in that religion.’ You see, by doing this he shows how stubborn he is for this devilish opinion of his and how much contempt he has for what happened on the cross and toward those who believe in the biblical fact that redemption was accomplished and finished there. If you believe that Jesus died on the cross and accomplished everything right there for your salvation, Mr. Huizing puts it to you that you are a whiner for not believing that payment was made in hell. He ridicules you. But simply believe the words of Christ, and never mind what Mr. Huizing says, and you will do well. What did Jesus say while on the cross? “It is finished.” That’s where redemption was accomplished: on the cross. ‘How many of you know that’s good news?’ Or ‘would you agree with that?’ Whenever redemption gets away from the cross, be unbelieving at that point! You need to place your faith where the sacrifice was made. The death of Christ on the cross is the gospel; nothing else is. The Good News is that sin was paid there in full for those who will believe on Jesus Christ for the remission of their sins. So place your faith there fully and nowhere else! Why do you think the apostle Paul determined to know Jesus Christ crucified and nothing else? (1 Corinthians 2.2.) Paul and the Holy Spirit who inspired what he wrote are trying to help you place your faith in the right place. Don’t you see that? Where was Jesus crucified?—: on the cross. Don’t let anyone take your faith away from there. Pastors like Mr. Huizing take the more obscure parts of Scripture like the one about this descent into hell, and then they risk anything or everything for their misinterpretation, even your salvation. They sacrifice clear passages of Scripture to the more obscure parts in order to create or hang on to heretical opinions, and if your salvation is made to hang in doubt because of it, too bad for you.     

Our fourth major concern is his statement that Jesus was reborn. This position was stated just ‘by-the-way’ but more than once and in more ways than one. Any pastor who expresses that opinion even in passing is bound to explain himself. If Jesus was reborn, then we need to know what this means to Mr. Huizing exactly. The word is much too suggestive and potentially harmful for us to leave it alone without comment. Look at the logical outcome of believing that Jesus was reborn. Watch where such a belief leads and then try and believe against your will that everything is okay. Listen, pastors who believe that Jesus descended into hell are not necessarily embracing heresy. But when they believe, in addition, that the debt of sin was paid there, they are messing with falsehood that is potentially damning. And when, in addition to this, they believe that Jesus was reborn, the heresy becomes damnable without a doubt, for not only is the work of Christ misplaced, but his person is misapprehended. If Jesus needed to be reborn, then he was once a sinner, and since those who have sinned fall short of God’s glory, as it says in Romans 3, then even Jesus Christ was unqualified to atone for sin. This is the consequence of a belief in Jesus being reborn. Salvation is not possible by anyone who needed to be reborn. If Jesus was reborn, then he was once a sinner. And you cannot be saved by him. This heresy concerning payment made in hell by a jesus who was reborn is ‘another gospel.’ And it is very popular among pastors on the extreme charismatic fringe, which is right where this pastor is. Mr. Huizing says enough in this sermon to single himself out as a false teacher. We single him out for those who are unable to do it for themselves. Can anyone be saved through ‘another gospel’? If so, why was Paul so vehement in his warnings to believe nothing but the true one? “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed” (Galatians 1.8, 9.) Imagine telling an angel to be damned. That’s what we are called to do if one should come down and preach a false gospel. How much more any man! or even apostle! This is the emphasis. And you know the rule: when the Scripture repeats itself, it is to make the rule in question be obeyed with twice the determination as usual and with double the speed. Do you know what this means? As discourteous as it sounds to modern, polite ears, it means that if you are really God’s child, you are supposed to let Mr. Huizing go his own way without you and be damned. Those who just feign commitment to God will reveal their true colors by their reaction to what we have just applied to this pastor. We look forward to the revelation, for we’ll know who’s who then. You hear a lot of talk these days (empty talk usually) about how we should live out our faith and make the Bible practical to our lives. Well here you go. Here is your chance. This is it. Be practical, not just doctrinal. Live it out. Obey the apostle! You say you’re never challenged. Nothing happens, you say. Your faith needs to be exercised. You just wish that something would happen. Obey the apostle, then! You can get no real growth toward maturity until you obey the hard commands of Scripture. We’re not suggesting you do anything more than obey the apostle’s precept. If you mean to play around with religion, then the practicality of that might be nothing more than to prosper financially on the basis of having completed this or that course. But if you mean to actually practice the Book of the living gospel, then you’ll obey what God says regarding gospels that are false. To do this would be to put your faith into practice. Faith in practice is about deeper things than money and how to get it. It’s about who’s got the gospel right and what to do about it. “Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, nay; but rather division” (Luke 12.51.) Is this not part of the Bible? Can this fit into your theology? One of the effects of Christ’s coming is division. When we embrace the gospel (the death of a sinless Substitute), then by virtue of that we refuse gospels that are false (like one that says that Jesus was reborn.) And so the effect of our faith is a division. There is nothing wrong with this. We are called to it. Practical religion is not comfortable and easy, but unpopular and painful. But this is what we call faithful. If you believe that biblical progress must come at no cost to your comfortable Christianity, then you have not yet read the Bible through an honest lens.     

If you remain unconvinced by our warnings, then you may try the following. Our advice to anyone who wants to know in person right from the source exactly where this pastor stands on the person and work of Christ (which are the pillars of where our faith must be placed for salvation from God’s wrath) is to approach the man and ask: ‘Was Jesus Christ, the God-Man, ever a sinner or maybe sinful?’ Just ask him that question and refuse everything but a yes or no answer. If he goes off into ambiguities, then he’s a deceiver that should be shunned. If he says no, then he’s either lying to your face or in this sermon; so if you choose to stay with him to find out what he really believes, do so with extreme care, watching and waiting for a possible slip. If he says yes, shake the dust off your shoes and get away from this church and its false teachings, and take as many with you as you can. But just as if you were fleeing Sodom or Gomorrah, be prepared to leave the others behind to perish if you have to. Regarding salvation, you must look out for yourself, like Lot did. You must flee alone if you have to. God has nothing but a punishing decree for those who would soil his only-begotten Son with the idea that sin was found in him, which is contrary, by the way, both to prophecy and fulfillment. There can be no salvation for anyone believing that sin was found in Jesus at any time, and in any measure. Sinless he ever is and always was. Will God forgive you through your faith in a jesus reborn from sin? Surely, if God draws the line anywhere, it must be here! It must be where the holiness of Jesus is concerned! If not here, then nowhere! This is a major issue that concerns the destiny of your ever lasting soul. You go along with a belief in Jesus as a reborn sinner, and you will go no farther into heaven than those who believe he is nothing but a created angel. If an angel who never sinned can’t save you, be sure no one who was a sinner can! You’ll get no farther than cults do with a belief in Jesus falsely apprehended. If you believe in a reborn jesus, you do not believe in the spotless Lamb, and your faith is in vain, for you have placed that faith on a jesus who doesn’t exist. Maybe the peer pressure will threaten to stop you from insisting on the Jesus of the Bible for salvation. Maybe you’re scared of being singled out. But it is better to axe your false beliefs and be despised by certain fellows than to continue believing this ‘reborn Jesus’ heresy and risk the wrath of God. Are you willing to believe in anything less than Jesus being sinless when he’s the only person ordained by God to save sinners from their sins? Are you willing to gamble on being saved by a person you believe to have been sinful? Don’t miss the logic here. If you believe that Jesus was reborn, then you believe that he was once a sinner, for no one needs to be reborn except he be a sinner first, and no one who was once a sinner is qualified to save, even though he be reborn. ‘Firstborn from the dead’ has nothing to do with being reborn. It means that Jesus is at the head of those who rise (the ‘first-fruits’) and the first to rise from death to immortality. Lazarus was raised up first, but not to immortality, for he died again. So you see in Jesus’ resurrection something greater: he was the firstborn from the dead: the first raised up to never again die. Note this: Jesus was born from the dead, not from sin. It’s about a resurrection, not a regeneration. Be not deceived: ‘firstborn from the dead’ does not mean reborn where Jesus is concerned. Believe that it does if you wish. But don’t believe that you’ll get to heaven by it because you’re sure to be disappointed LATER. Just think about it: Will God save you through the second Adam when your conception of him is no higher than who the first Adam was? If you will believe in a saviour who was once in need of being reborn, you might as well put your faith in the first Adam, or in Eve for that matter! You’ll do about as well with that. Your faith in anyone reborn can only be anchored in sin, death, and hell, and you’ll not get into heaven with it. What advice can we give but for you to shun a belief like that? What advice can we give but for you to get away from the teacher of it? It’s for your own everlasting good.

One thing more before we conclude. This ‘revelation knowledge’ that Mr. Huizing gets his congregation to mindlessly repeat is a keyword for this ‘word of faith’ theology that has for its centerpiece an imperfect saviour (though the actual center is even less than that really: someone like Kenny Hagin, or finances, or a dying body that’s supposed to be healed!) Where is Mr. Hagin? He believed that healing was his right, didn’t he? He died of heart disease, the very thing he had boasted of being healed of. Kenneth Hagin: “Divine healing is an accomplished fact…it’s time for you to possess the promise of healing and enjoy complete health in every area” (Possessing the Promise of Healing.) Why didn’t he possess the promise and enjoy complete health? Because his healing was not an accomplished fact: he was a false teacher, a false prophet. What is meant by ‘revelation knowledge’ among hirelings way out on the heretical periphery is any idea that is beyond and against the revelation we call the word of God. Satan came up with an idea like that first when he tempted Eve, and was found in opposition to what God had spoken, and then was promptly cursed. Subjective influences continue in every age to vie for supremacy with God’s objective word. Is it not an eerie and sinister concurrence that Mr. Huizing intimates to his listeners exactly what Satan tempted Eve to aspire to? “Ye shall be as gods,” the devil said, just before Eve succumbed to the eating of that ill-gotten fruit. Will you eat the fruit that Mr. Huizing is tempting you with? Will you eat this extra-revelation, this ‘revelation knowledge’ that Mr. Huizing has borrowed to deceive you by? Count on it, you will never be as gods because there are certain attributes of Almighty God that are incommunicable, and Jesus will never be anyone less than an un-reborn sinless God-Man. Believe as Mr. Huizing does concerning the doctrines we have just shown you of his to be false, and you are in direct violation of God’s warning and directly in line to receive the penalty promised to those who ignore the warning. “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, if any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book” (Revelation 22.18.) By the Spirit may the word speak so as to make you wake up from your drowsy acceptance of ‘doctrines of devils’! Don’t dilly-dally about your decision to take sides. Either realize you are on the dark side and follow Satan and his charmers down the snake-winding path, or get on the side of God’s uncorrupted gospel and be safe within the sheepfold. A writer once remarked that we should draw our Bible and throw our scabbard away. God’s word must be our weapon, not just our badge, he said; this is why it is called the sword of the Spirit. Another said that this word must become an extension of our person if we hope to survive the heresies and sins that are raining down like darts to drop us down into hell. We must listen to such writers. You are being seduced by a smooth-talking salesman. He suppresses the truth of who Jesus is and what he did in order to peddle a satchel full of false promises. A seducing spirit has a seared conscience (1 Timothy 4.2.) And those who are seduced by him will likewise become hardhearted against the doctrines of God. You, even you could become like a stiff-necked bull, but one who is nevertheless willing to be led to the slaughterhouse of hell. And is this not already happening if you’ve decided to just sweep aside this very cautious, very point-by-point appraisal of Mr. Huizing’s deceptive sermon? Do not think that all is okay just because Mr. Huizing preaches some things that are true. Satan did the same and still does. Another writer has pointed out that a cup full of pure water from a mountain spring will kill you if the drop of poison has been added to it. There are more than a few drops of cyanide for the spirit who drinks from this ‘family-friendly’ stream. We do not fault the church, but its pulpit-master; not the members, but the man who is leading the members astray. 

Conclusion: Mr. Huizing has a measure of talent for public speaking. We can understand why we’ve heard some good things about his presentation. But the content is rather earthly; some of the beliefs not only tend toward heresy, but are; and his attitude has nothing of the mortified temper that men have who are truly possessed of the Spirit of power. This man is harboring an unorthodox theology in his breast that he tries not to be too explicit about, probably for fear of being discovered a heretic and of losing people and popularity. We do not say such a thing without reasonable ground. Though undeveloped, there are plenty of statements to make us come out against him without reservation. Even by this first analysis alone, we must warn people not to attend this Family of Faith. On their church website, Mr. Huizing and his wife both acknowledge their education under Kenneth Hagin to have been the place where they received ‘invaluable revelation’ and ‘practical insight.’ No doubt this is where they received their ‘health and wealth’ gospel and this heretical belief that Jesus was ‘reborn.’ We have not even gone into our concerns about what Mr. Huizing might mean by ‘what Jesus did, he did not do just for himself.’ The statement might imply (we only say ‘might’ and therefore you can ask him) a belief that Jesus did not just atone for the sins of man, but for his own. And we are suspicious about what Jesus as the ‘prototype’ means to Mr. Huizing and about how exalted he thinks ‘joint-heirs’ have, or will, become. The kind of ‘theology’ that goes along with this talk of Jesus paying for sins in hell and having to be reborn sometimes comes with the assertions that redeemed man is, or will be, co-equal with Jesus and that any born-again person has the same credentials as Christ to save. And so these further suspicions we have are reasonable. Referring to Jesus as the ‘firstborn’ Mr. Huizing does say: “Everything that comes afterwards will be exactly like the prototype.” Does he not believe that by us becoming ‘exactly’ like the ‘prototype’ we shall be as exalted as Christ himself? Regardless, Mr. Huizing’s falsehood about Jesus being reborn puts him on the dishonorable level of Mr. Copeland and Mr. Hagin (though his ‘prosperity’ may not be on the same level.) No, the prototypes do prosper more. Now listen, who does the Bible say needs to be reborn? There is only one answer in the Bible to this question: sinners. If Jesus was reborn, then he must have been a sinner in need of regeneration, and therefore how can he be able to save? Why do you suppose the Bible is so careful to insist that Jesus was ‘without sin’? It is because this is one of the qualifications for being fit to save. Once believe that Jesus was ever ‘reborn’ and you have denied the Scripture and called him a sinner. You have (in your mind and heart) no one but a sinner to save you then. And it is not possible to be saved by a sinner. Are you reborn? If so, then you are just as qualified to save as a reborn jesus would be (which is exactly what Mr. Copeland teaches.) But deep down you know that you can’t save yourself. Why believe, then, that a reborn jesus can save you? Anyone who has been a sinner and who is now reborn is just as unqualified as the next reborn sinner. A reborn jesus can help no one. You need the sinless Christ of Scripture; without him you are damned, and will be damned. Once you swallow this lie that Jesus was reborn, you have left yourself without a Saviour to save. If you attend this church, you no doubt have heard whispers that Kenneth Hagin was a heretic. Look into it, for this is who your pastor has modeled himself after, and now you are being modeled after this same fashion. Pay attention to the law of the first, Mr. Huizing says. How about the first things of orthodoxy? How about the first thing being to get the doctrines of Jesus Christ right? A spotless lamb was necessary under the Mosaic law. Do you think that something less was necessary to fulfill that law and to satisfy for man’s breaking thereof? “How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God” (Hebrews 9.14.) Does this sound like Jesus was, or ever needed to be, reborn from a state of sin? “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief” (3.12.)