By Elizabeth Prata
A dear sister sent me information related to a new ‘teaching’ series Beth Moore has begun, called, “Developing Compassion for the Sexually Abused – Part 1“. Apparently there are three parts to the series. The sister wondered if this is an indication that Beth Moore (ever eager to capitalize on any and all trendy or faddish waves, says me) is preparing to capitalize more overtly on the sexual abuse issues that have arisen in the wake of the Houston Chronicle’s exposé one year ago this month, the #MeToo movement, and Moore’s own “Letter to My Brothers” published in 2018.
I replied that I appreciated the information, was inspired by her insight, and promised to review the series (painfully, I’m sure) and get back to her.
True to my word, a few hours later I brewed a pot of tea, turned on Moore’s first video in this new series, rattled around the kitchen and my desk area prior to settling my full attention, thinking I had a few minutes to really tune in since her introductions usually go long and I likely would not hear anything I needed to take notes on just yet.
I was wrong.
Beth Moore spoke heresy within the first seventeen seconds. That is all it took, 17 seconds for her to speak something that immediately grabbed my attention, caused me to sputter my tea, grab a pen and begin writing.
What was it that Beth Moore said that so overtook me on shock? She opened this new ‘teaching’ series by saying,
You’d have to be living under a rock not to be aware of the sexual abuse scandals that have surfaced in the last few years, all the way from Hollywood, to houses of worship, rocking denominations from Roman Catholicism to Southern Baptists.
If she had noted the terrible priest abuse scandal that the Boston Globe had reported on in 2000 as a newsworthy event in secular culture, that would be one thing, but to equalize the Protestant denomination of the SBC and the Roman Catholic Church, is a heinous grief and a major error.
In 2002 Moore was videotaped giving a lesson from her “Believing God” series in which she related a “vision” Jesus had given her. She said that she was lifted into another dimension ‘to see the global church as Jesus sees it’ and this supposed global church included the Catholic Church. She demonstrated her point by gathering a number of women onto the stage and placing church name placards in front of each group, naming them such as Mt Zion Missionary Baptist Church, First United Methodist Church, Christ the Redeemer Lutheran Church. The name for the part of the global church as Jesus allegedly sees it included a “denomination” of a Catholic church she had hypothetically named “St. Anne’s Catholic Church”.
This cannot be so. Jesus would not consider the Catholic Church a part of the true faith. Roman Catholicism and Christianity are not the same thing.
Many people eighteen years ago put her error down to a well-intentioned mistake, or an aberrant moment in an otherwise good ministry, etc.
However in 2011 Moore also seemed to make the same theological error, when she seemed to say that the Reformation was a mistake. This was from her part in the Be Still DVD teaching series.
You know, one of the things that time gives us is that it erases the lines in between people so many different sections of the people of God. Because many years later it doesn’t matter any longer that this person was of this practice in the Christian faith and this person of another.&
Time somehow blurs those lines and we are profoundly moved by the historical narratives of all their lives, of so great a cloud of witnesses; that we can look back on and see what kept them running the race, what kept them running toward the face of Christ at the end of that finish line.
Time does not blur those lines, or it shouldn’t. Those lines divide the false from the true, the narrow way from the wide way, the sheepfold from the world of wolves. As my friend Pastor James Bell said of Moore’s error in this instance,
And we can be as nice, and as pleasant, and as gentle, and as loving, and as charitable, and tolerant as we can possibly be, but it’s not going to change that folks. Somebody is preaching a different gospel! And when Rome condemned the Protestant declaration of “Justification by faith alone,” I believe, Rome, when placing the anathema on “sola fide (L.),” placed the anathema of God upon themselves….
But if the first error above was put down to an anomaly, and the second put down to being too vague, this instance in 2020 reveals in no uncertain terms that Moore believes Catholicism is a part of Christianity.
Her husband Keith is Catholic, even if “he never was a great Catholic” to restate her own words. Her father-in-law and her mother-in-law were and are staunch Catholics. Her father-in-law (passed on now) had initially studied to be a priest.
I can understand the pain of having relatives who are not of the true faith, and knowing without a doubt what their eternity holds. I can understand the temptation to convince one’s self that they really are saved after all, if that is what Beth Moore is doing.
I can’t put her clear error down to theological ignorance, she has read the Bible for so long that ignorance can’t be used as an excuse. Deliberate suppression, perhaps, or willful rebellion maybe. She should not have married a man to whom she would be unequally yoked, and this is one of the reasons why. A wife may win over her husband without words but by her behavior, as 1 Peter 3:1 says. However, more commonly, when a glove falls in the mud, the mud doesn’t get glovey.
The tragedy is several-fold.
Beth Moore’s inclusion of Catholics into the true faith fails to see them as a mission field full of lost people. It gives a Roman Catholic person false hope where they have no hope. This is the true definition of hate.
It also teaches falsely and blurs the lines of doctrine. This confuses her hearers. Protestants believe in a salvation that occurs only through faith and trust in God’s grace, not through good deeds. (Ephesians 2:8). Catholics believe salvation occurs through grace, works, traditions, and sacraments. Anyone who doesn’t believe these is cursed (anathema. Council of Trent Canon 9, 12, 23, 24, 30; Vatican II, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy- various parts).
Third, the tragedy is that such utterings expose Moore as a heretical teacher. Yet many millions follow her.
All this is tragedy and I spiritually mourn and sometimes become physically ill just thinking about it. Yet! Nothing occurs without God’s express ordination. All things come under His sovereign plan, and that He has allowed Moore to persist as long as He has is indicative of the grace he extends. Jesus gave the false prophetess of Thyatira time to repent (Revelation 2:21a). Perhaps Jesus is also giving false prophetess Beth Moore time to repent.
Ultimately, the false prophetess of Thyatira was unwilling to repent (Revelation 2:21b) and thus, Jesus promised He will kill her and strike her followers dead. (Revelation 2:22). This also is a tragedy, but it is God’s display of mercy in the former case and His justice in the latter.
Be it known that Roman Catholicism is not another denomination of the faith. It is not akin to Baptists, as Moore stated. It is a false religion more akin to Islam or Wicca than anything God has anything to do with. I beg you ladies, with all I have in me, not to follow Beth Moore or absorb any of her teachings or read anything she has written or listen to anything she has to say. Her lengthy time of rebellion against God and His word has only served to harden her into a person who brings heresy and corruption in the true faith.
I will continue to listen to the series “Developing Compassion for the Sexually Abused” parts 1, 2, 3, for the reasons that: I promised to, and because I want first-hand knowledge of a person that affects many of my sisters, and so that I can warn my sisters with specifics from having seen things in context.
In my close study of Beth Moore over time, she does pick up on whatever trend is fashionable. She mirrored similar language in her Believing God study as the seminal Blackaby study of Experiencing God, when that was first popular. She mirrored Joel Osteen’s mantra ‘this is my Bible’ when that became popular. It might be exactly as my sister proposed, that Moore is following a trend.
Not to diminish the very real pain of sexual abuse. It is a terrible sin perpetrated upon many girls and women. But I had said in 2011 “My conclusion to the Beth Moore ministry is that it is led by a troubled woman having extended therapy sessions about herself” and this stance has not changed. Moore never seems to be able to leave a talk, video, lesson, or book without saying something about her own sexual abuse and pain. The fourth tragedy to this multiply tragic situation is, if Moore has begun to monetize it.
Is Roman Catholicism still a mission field? News from Mike Gendron
All Beth Moore Critiques in One Place : 65+critiques of Moore’s teaching from women, myself, pastors, theologians, in discernment essays, also some Book Reviews, here in one linkapalooza