“False teachers are not our brethren who have sinned against us, as referenced in Matthew 18. Heck, I do not even expect Joel Osteen to answer any charges I might bring to him. He doesn’t even know me. But the charges have been brought over the years and unfortunately most often through secular interviews. His response is that he feels people already know all they have done wrong and he just wants to encourage them. Well gosh that sounds nice but it is not the Gospel.”
(Anthony Wade – 828Ministries) This subject has come up before when Christians want to defend the wolves who devour the sheep of the Lord. I get it. I really do. The unnamed sheep seem to mean nothing to us because the church does such a poor job of explaining who our new family is once we are saved.
Even Jesus said when His mother was waiting to see Him that who is His mother and brother except he who does the will of the Father. In churchianity, the purpose driven growth schemes have created carnally successful silos of each individual church that pays lip service to being part of the kingdom but the reality is once you leave such a church, you will find out how close your family really was all along.
The cult of personality preachers that are created through this same paradigm are worshiped in churchianity. Just try saying something critical of Joseph Prince or Joel Osteen and get ready for the onslaught from the unsaved goats that follow them. So it is of no surprise that great swaths of what is called the church today would rather defend the most voracious wolves on the planet than care for the sheep they are slaughtering. When dealing with the lost who fall for false doctrine, we hear the same refrain that they should somehow know better or that they should have read their bibles. No mercy. Yet out of the other side of their mouths are the same defenses for the wolves — you don’t know them! They just love Jesus so much! Judge not!
So it always seems to go like this whenever discussing false teaching. In making a generic post the other day regarding the purpose of discernment, I casually referenced the truth — which is that we should not be praying for wolves. While many agreed there was the same choir responding that the bible says we should just be loving and praying for everyone. Once again, I get that. It sounds noble and pious. I do not actually care what it sounds like however. I just want to know if it is sound biblically and guess what? It is not. Before examining this, let us clear up some background issues that are always conflated with this discussion only to muddy the conversation. First of all we are dealing with false teachers, not people who are making an error in their teaching. Anyone can make a mistake or say something in error. It is unfair and not discerning at all to condemn someone for a simple error. For example, a few years back, Victoria Osteen said that we worship God for ourselves, not for Him. Part of the discernment world flipped out. I waited. I wanted to see what she would say in response to the criticism. After all, she could have just said it in error. That would not change the fact the she and her heretic husband are huge false teachers but at least regarding this issue it would not be. A week later she came out with Joel holding her hand and doubled down. Done deal. Look, the people we are talking about do not have mere holes in their theology. They have been confronted multiple times over years of ministry and have refused to repent of the false teaching. In the conversation this week someone actually asked for links regarding whether Bill Johnson has ever been confronted regarding his teaching. C’mon. A simple Google search reveals the truth.