Tag Archive | beth moore

Christian feminism coming home to roost: Retrospective from 6 years ago

Today in evangelical circles we are dealing with an unthinkable situation: serious discussions of the possibility of a female President of the Southern Baptist Convention, and it’s Beth Moore of all people. I don’t think it will actually happen, but the trail has been blazed. The tweets have been sent. News articles have been written. The discussions have been significant. The possibility has been raised and not rejected. Next time the discussions will go further. That is the nature of sin.

We are reading news articles like this:
The Case for Electing Beth Moore President of the SBC

and seeing tweets like this:

russell moore

And we wonder, how did we get here? Slowly, incrementally, just as all sin happens. Sin has been tolerated, and once the camel has his nose under the tent, soon he enters fully.

Back in 2012 I wrote about how this creeping feminism would affect and harm the greater body. I said that the constant scenes of forward living women preaching and teaching men, being CEO of their own corporations ministries, globe-trotting, leaving children at home, and living lives that in the secular world are be called feminist, will come to roost.

Well, it has.

What you read below is an edited re-post of what I wrote in 2012. I pray that God has mercy on the young women who see the Christian feminists and become confused as to their roles. I pray that He is forbearing and patient a while longer, so the Bible teachers who live these Christian feminist lives would come to repentance. I pray He has mercy on the husbands who allow it. God did give the metaphorical Jezebel time to repent, and her daughters too, in Revelation 2 letter to the church at Thyatira. But He also threatened to strike her and her followers dead if they did not, and to repay those who tolerated her according to their deeds. Sin of whatever nature is serious, as when it is in the form of tolerating a false prophetess!

_____________________________

There are some celebrity woman Bible teachers today who say that they live a life of biblical womanhood but their lives show something different- and it’s equal to the secular feminists. Let’s take a look at what the new Christian feminism is.

“A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle” was the feminist motto of the 1970s. The implication was that women didn’t ‘need’ a man at all.

Readers of the blog already know that I am not a fan of feminism. I wrote an essay called “The Eternal Discontent of Feminists“, in which I looked at the hypocritical standard secular feminists themselves apply to other women who are perceived as not doing feminism right. That, more than anything, lets us know that feminism is not about equal rights for women, it is about satan’s sowing of discontent among women and causing a division away from the Godly roles He has set up.

Feminism has encroached into Christianity. I think most people are still slumbering because I haven’t seen a hue and cry against it. Granted, it is subtle, especially in the women who claim to be evangelical in words but actually live a feminist life.

Source

There are now a number of popular Bible teachers/preachers who travel widely, filling arenas, marketing their books, selling their products, and leaving the husband at home to take care of the kids. These women have assumed the lead role in the marriage and are the main breadwinner, and/or the husband is the helpmeet, usually having set aside his career to work in his wife’s corporation ministry. While these women call what they are doing “ministry,” I call it “feminism”.

As with so much in evangelical Christianity, the waters are increasingly muddied on what should be clear. What is biblical womanhood? In today’s world is it the Bible preaching, sometimes ordained woman, traveling cross country, her husband at home helping with the kids, often having quit his job to help his famous wife perform her ministry?

Or it is a woman with a terribly flawed view of the Bible who sits in a tent when she has per period as a practice for what it was like to be a woman of the Bible for one year?

Or it is a new feminist who is open to women being ordained, to preaching, and/or to acceptance of gays into leadership positions while touting the rising up of women from subjugated roles?

There is something in between. It’s women who claim to be submitted Christian wives who just happen to teach the Bible but really are feminists living a life Gloria Steinem would envy. They are a new crop of what I’ll call Christian secret feminists. They live a feminist life inside of Christianity but call it ministry.

One woman who has much to answer for about this new role is Beth Moore. She was the one who broke new ground in how far a woman could go in attaining celebrity status, in workplace and homelife gender reversals, in being the main and sustained breadwinner of the family, and pr/teaching in a church and in the world. Mrs Moore, while speaking conservative values cloaked in all the right Christianese, lives a very forward life. You will see more details on this below.

A spiritual daughter of Mrs Moore in this generation of new Christian secret feminists is Christine Caine. Mrs Caine’s language is less cloaked in her declarations of what women can or should see as their roles in Christian home and work life. Mrs Caine is an ordained minister and part of Hillsong Church in Australia.

For example, in an interview reassuring Pastor’s wives that despite Caine’s visible usurpation of the traditional husband-wife roles, that their stay-at-home role is still viable: “Predominantly I might teach a little bit and I step out into what would be the more classic leadership gift, so a lot of people say ‘I’m not that, so therefore I must not have a role to play…'”

It is no wonder that woman are confused when they see leaders or peers taking on the ‘classic leadership gift’. And that is one way they cloak their rebellion in Christianese: it is not a role or a job, it is a ‘gift’.

Christine continues in the interview by acknowledging that there are “women who are gentle and loving and nurturing”, and there are other “women who come along side and do a bit more “non-gentle prodding help people go to the next level.” But that in “no way diminishes your role.”

Really? Sure it does. It sets up women to be discontent. By justifying herself in the leadership role as a gift from God (and who can argue with that?) and acknowledging that there are ‘levels’ and women need to get to, but at the same time saying it is important to stay at home and be nurturing…she has completely confused any listener as to the clear guidelines of the notion of what Biblical womanhood is. She says one thing (and not too clearly, either) and does another.

Jennie Allen is founder of of If:Gathering and one of the youngest of the feminist-living ladies on this list. IF is a tax exempt corporation, and shows founder Jennie as President and CEO, working 40/hours week, with husband Zac as board chair working 10 hours week. Allen is quoted in Christianity Today article as saying, “We’ve been slow to step into our giftedness or strengths. For a long time, that wasn’t an option,” said Allen.”

Discernment tip: one way to detect if a person is in the Word is to see if what they say and what they do match up over time. If what they say and what they do are different, run away.

Mrs Caine’s reassurances use a neat scriptural twist. The way satan works with any woman’s objection to women taking on home or ministry leadership roles is to acknowledge that the women feel weak or unsure in them, but to get around it by assuring them that all they need to do is have courage to step out and let Jesus work through their weakness, citing 2 Corinthians 12:9. Or simply as Jennie Allen encourages, ‘just do it because the time is now’.

In that same interview, Mrs Caine said, “The only way I was able to continue in my role is that my senior pastor’s wife stepped into her role and chose not to be threatened or intimidated because the giftings were different.”

Oh, I get it. Women are now complementarians to each other. It’s the height of irony that again, unwittingly, Mrs Caine acknowledges that these new ‘roles’ set up discontent and that she is glad that in her situation at least, the pastor’s wife wasn’t jealous of her fabulous gift of leadership. A good portion of the middle of the interview is Caine’s description of how women are to be complementarian of each other in church settings. One takes the wifely nurturing role so that the younger ones coming up can step out, so to speak.

Now, female support between and among ministries is a good thing, and it is biblically commanded. (Titus 2:4) but the description in Titus is for elder women to teach the younger is in their biblically defined helpmeet role, not to be a helpmeet to other women who usurp into classic male roles. It is another twist of using the Bible to justify what is not proper.

Priscilla Shirer is another of these new Christian secret feminists whose life is more forward than their spiritual mothers. I’ve posted this before but it bears repeating:

This NY Times article notes that “Priscilla Shirer’s marriage appears to be just the sort of enlightened partnership that would make feminists cheer.”

The article describes what makes the liberal and secular newspaper and their readership, cheer. Mr Shirer, who quit his job to serve his wife’s organization ministry,  spends much of the day negotiating Priscilla’s speaking invitations and her book contracts. In the afternoon it’s often Mr Shirer who collects the boys from school. Back home, Priscilla and Jerry divide chores and child care equally.

“Jerry quit his job to run his wife’s ministry. Priscilla now accepts about 20 out of some 300 speaking invitations each year, and she publishes a stream of Bible studies, workbooks and corresponding DVDs intended for women to read and watch with their girlfriends from church. Jerry does his share of housework and child care so that Priscilla can study and write. He travels with his wife everywhere. Whenever possible, they take their sons along on her speaking trips, but they often deposit the boys with Jerry’s mother,”‘ states the article.

If you delete the name Priscilla Shirer and substitute Gloria Steinem, and change the word ministry to job you have a description of a life that any feminist would be proud of.

By now Beth Moore is one of the elders in this realm. Moore has been “on the ministry circuit” for 15 years. Thus, her rebellious example has been long in view for many women who have watched her since they were an impressionable teen. So is Sheryl Brady and Joyce Meyer. Those women were the trailblazers for women in male leadership ministry. Newcomers arriving on the scene such as Priscilla Shirer or Christine Caine, and the younger Rachel Held Evans and Jennie Allen, have learned from the best of the Christian secret feminists. For example:

Beth Moore said to Christianity Today in 2010 that her man demanded a regular home life so she only travels every other Friday and comes right back home the next day.

“We walk the dogs together and eat out together all the time and lie on the floor with pillows and watch TV,” Moore says. “My man demanded attention and he got it, and my man demanded a normal home life and he got it.”

Aww, isn’t that nice. But it’s disingenuous in the extreme. The reality is that Mrs Moore is not only gone from home at least 20 times per year on her Living Proof tours, which is a lot if you have kids and a husband. Mrs Moore appears weekly on the Life Today television show, travels for weeks on book tours, where she expounds on the burning question all women in America are apparently asking, “How can women find validation without a man’s affirmation?” and which her book So Long, Insecurity apparently attempts to answer.

She also spends extended private time for weeks in a cabin by herself in Wyoming to write (as stated in the preface to “When Godly People Do Ungodly Things”). She is the President of her own company that in 2011 brought in 4.1 million dollars, with an excess after expenses of 1.3M, stated working hours of 40/week. If you think all she does is lay around on pillows gazing adoringly at her man then all I can say is look at what she does, not what she says.  Beth Moore is a Christian secret feminist because for years she has lived that way, no matter what blather she tells Christianity Today.

It is no wonder women are confused when they see Beth Moore telling us that you can have it all, and still be a Christian woman, if you call it ministry. Enjoli.

Rachel Held Evans “is one of the better known Christian writers in mainline and progressive circles these days. Her new book examines what it would mean to live life as a woman according to the Biblical laws for a year. It’s in the vein of books like AJ Jacobs’ “The Year of Living Biblically” and other “human guinea pig” projects. The book is funny, thoughtful and empowering for women seeking to understand where they fit within a faith that has largely been controlled by men for centuries” writes Patheos.

Ms Evans says she is an accidental feminist, writing on her blog, “Most of all, if these critics knew me, they would know that it isn’t feminism that inspires me to advocate gender equality in the Church and in the world; it is the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

That seems to be another approach to justifying Christian feminism, “it was an accident”, or “God surprised me with this ministry” as Priscilla Shirer says, as if stating that since it was all out of their hands they are not nor will be morally and spiritually culpable on the Lord’s day of Judgment. I can assure Mrs Evans that Jesus did not deliver the Gospel by His blood so she could use it to promote a different role for women than He has already ordained.

We have looked at some of today’s most popular Christian secret and open feminists, the old guard and the new pups coming up. I offered you some examples from their own statements of how their lives in reality more match the secular world’s view of a strong feminist woman rather than the biblical helpmeet.

The old saying from the 70s, “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle” was the feminist motto. Now the only difference for today’s Christian secret feminist is the logo on her purse.

Christian feminists part 2
Christian feminists Part 3

Beth Moore’s Legalism: A Discernment Lesson applicable to any teacher

I have written about Beth Moore’s legalism in the past (2011). It’s hard to believe that was 7 years ago. Here is a refresher course on how, while seeming to speak a Gospel-infused sermon, Beth Moore’s speeches are really just a ‘try harder’ legalism. This is a lesson in discernment.

You have to listen carefully and do a lot of note-taking because Moore speaks so fast, or if you listen online, use the pause button a lot. Her ‘try harder’ theology is also in her books as you will see, so the issue is not just her speaking style, but her theology. You will hear that Beth Moore shapes the scriptures away from pure faith and toward legalism. She splits sentences, putting a crowbar between words and inserting things you’ve ‘got’ to do. There is a lot of ‘do this or else’. There are also lots of warnings about the dire conditions of our walk, without real explanations. Like this from a few days ago.

moore tweet

It seems she is trying to say that we shouldn’t be too busy. Too busy for what, she never says. Yet after more than three successive tweets (yes, it went on) she never got to any clear point. Milk meaning from graffiti? Huffing and puffing? And what does it mean, exactly, that we are ‘blowing our houses down’?  A teacher is supposed to be “able to teach.” (2 Timothy 2:24).  Not vaguely warn. Or be so in love with her writing that plain meaning is obscured…

Our precious Lord gave salvation as a gift. No matter how we stumble, or no matter how many times we enter a sin-repent-forgive cycle, we are saved and effective for His glory. He gave us a GIFT of salvation. It is the gift of redemption, a gift of imputed righteousness. Here are some examples of how Moore diminishes the gift of the Gospel and makes it a confusing, burdensome, treacherous walk among the heavy stones of the Law.

Example #1:

Her contemplative prayer quote: “[I]f we are not still before Him, we will never truly know to the depths of the marrow of our bones that He is God. There’s got to be a stillness.”

According to Moore, we will “never” “truly” know who God is UNLESS we are still. Beware of Bible teachers who frequently use absolute words.

Example #2:

In one study, Beth Moore is speaking of ‘confidence and competence’ that Christ gives us. The study is based on Hebrews 10:19-20 but her interpretation of the verse is wrong from the beginning. Once the basic interpretation is wrong it is no surprise that what follows falls into even worse error. Watch carefully as she inserts conditions to salvation. She even outlines the effect of not believing the new add-ons that she includes.

…but what can happen is this … If we receive Christ as our Savior but we never recognize and by faith believe Him to also be our healer and our restorer then we just stay just as cracked as when we got here.

The Gospel is now Law. According to Moore, we have to believe some things above and beyond what the Bible says we need to believe for salvation. According to Moore, we must believe in a different Christ than the Jesus presented in His Word. I certainly don’t see anything in His word about having to believe that Jesus is our Savior AND our Healer AND our Restorer or else we stay “cracked”. And what does cracked mean, exactly? This is some vague warning of looming disaster, the kind of warnings Moore loves to issue.

Now as for this cracked business, the Bible does speak of being cracked:

For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, The fountain of living waters, To hew for themselves cisterns, Broken cisterns That can hold no water. (Jeremiah 2:13).

The cracked ones were the ones who forsook God. They were the evil ones.

But when Jesus saves us, we are sealed! “Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.” (2 Corinthians 1:21-22).

There is no in-between in the New Testament, being saved but leaking through a crack.

Example #3:

…it [confidence] just bleeds out everywhere, we can’t keep any confidence in there. Because we have never trusted Him to put three pieces of our lives back together. Is this making any sense to anybody? We have all these cracks and all these pieces. … And we’re supposed to be effective here on earth. … Salt and light and profoundly effective, but we can’t be any of that unless we have our God-confidence.

Again with the “we can’t…unless”. Note those words.

As to Moore’s addition of confidence as a necessary condition of keeping our salvation or being effective or something, Jeremiah wasn’t confident. His first worry was that he was too young for the job. (Jeremiah 1:6-8). By any standard, Jeremiah was an effective man of God.

Moses wasn’t confident. He worried he wasn’t eloquent enough to be a spokesman. (Exodus 4:10-12). By any standard, Moses was not too confident, but he sure was effective.

So far, from just three of her teachings we learn that —

1. Unless we accept Jesus as savior AND Healer AND Restorer, His work is not sufficient.
2. Unless we get some God-confidence, we are not effective.
3. Unless we believe certain things about Jesus, we will stay cracked.
4. Unless we are still, we will never truly know God.

The legalistic conditions pile up fast.

Example #4:

Moore’s book Breaking Free: Making Liberty in Christ a Reality in Life was reviewed by Paige Britton.

Britton says, “One rather ironic element of Moore’s teaching is her definition of “legalism,” one of the roadblocks we must remove if we want to journey on to authentic freedom. According to Moore, legalism occurs whenever one studies the Word but fails to enjoy God; it is the absence of relationship, passion, engagement of the heart (pp.75, 77). This definition is fine as far as it goes, but it effectively obscures the fact that Breaking Free is all about applying new rules in order to gain what God meant for us as a gift in Christ.

Isn’t that ironic. A book called Breaking Free is really just a new way to enslave you. Moore makes up and applies new rules to gain what was given as a gift says Britton, and I have noticed this too. So we have issues with new rules in Moore’s speaking ministry and in her tweets and in her books. Her theology, no matter where it’s publicly proffered, is a problem.

Once you start hearing the “got to” and “must do” and “unless you” you will hear her new rules permeating her teaching everywhere.

What does the Bible say about new rules for salvation? It says that adding an unbiblical load kills us.

“Woe to you as well, experts in the law!” He replied. “You weigh men down with heavy burdens, but you yourselves will not lift a finger to lighten their load. (Luke 11:46).

Now, therefore, why are you putting God to the test by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? (Acts 15:10).

Don’t listen to Moore or any teacher who imposes conditions on your walk that are absent from the Bible. Or who uses absolute words like unless, can’talways, never, all the time, and so on. The Father loves us with an enduring, everlasting love that is perfect. Moreover, He is our priest who prays for us. He sends angels to minister to us. He gave us the Spirit to grow us. We are not cracked, leaking, unconfident, missing out on what we need, ineffective, on the verge of disaster, or any of the things Moore says we are. Moore’s world must be dark and heavy indeed.

Our world, though a mindful one and filled with obedient striving, is one of light and freedom from the very conditions Moore seeks to impose. This is because we are in Christ, and He met all the conditions necessary on the cross and broke that chain, in order to set the captives free.

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not be encumbered once more by a yoke of slavery. (Galatians 5:1).

chain

Lifestyles of the mega-rich pastors with estates and private jets: You’ll be shocked to see who is among them (OK it’s Beth Moore)

I know that we’re all familiar with the ridiculous extravagance of some of the word of faith preachers. Kenneth Copeland, Jesse Duplantis, Creflo Dollar, Joyce Meyer and Joel Osteen with their jets and mansions and vacation homes and gold commodes and the like. Occasionally when someone comments on their over-the-top lifestyles of these supposed men and women of God, especially the private jets, replies often veer to the extreme in defending their purchase and use for a ‘ministry’. Duplantis said he needed the plane so he could work. Copeland said the same, the private plane is his sanctuary. They agreed they could talk to God better and there would not be distractions of people coming up to them asking for prayer. They needed the plane so they could work. Remember these reasons later. For work.

Can you picture Paul spending ministry money to hire this palanquin, the Lear Jet of the day?

We chortle and giggle at these obvious extremes, and wonder how much money could be spent elsewhere if only the preacher would cut down on the luxury living and donate the funds to worthy ministries, their own congregation, or anywhere else except to support their self-indulgent lifestyle choices.

The Bible is clear on life and doctrine. Ministers and leaders must be pure, humble, and Godly. It is not a sin to be rich, not at all. Abraham and Job and Solomon and Joseph of Arimathea were extremely wealthy. Lydia was rich. Joseph and Mary were nearly peasants and many of the disciples were simple fishermen. The Bible runs the gamut on the sliding scale of wealth, showing us many different people and lifestyles in its pantheon of heroes and villains. The point isn’t having the money. The point is what you do with it.

The Bible does warn, however, that it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to gain heaven. (Matthew 19:24). Barnes’ Notes explains well:

The difficulties in the way of the salvation of a rich man are:
1. that riches engross the affections.
2. that people consider wealth as the chief good, and when this is obtained they think they have gained all.
3. that they are proud of their wealth, and unwilling to be numbered with the poor and despised followers of Jesus.
4. that riches engross the time, and fill the mind with cares and anxieties, and leave little for God.
5. that they often produce luxury, dissipation, and vice. that it is difficult to obtain wealth without sin, without avarice, without covetousness, fraud, and oppression, 1 Timothy 6:9-10, 1 Timothy 6:17; James 5:1-5; Luke 12:16-21; Luke 16:19-31.
Still, Jesus says Matthew 19:26, all these may be overcome. God can give grace to do it. Though to people it may appear impossible, yet it is easy for God.

When we think of mega-rich pastors and leaders living luxuriant lifestyles, we usually think of Copeland, Duplantis, Dollar, Meyer, and Osteen. Yet there are other leaders who live similarly to the megapastors I’ve just mentioned. I’d like to bring your attention to Beth Moore’s lifestyle. Yes, Beth Moore.

Moore puts forth the deliberate image that she is just a sister to us all, living a struggling life with her man, eatin’ Ramen, and listening to the crickets for entertainment. The lifestyle image she carefully cultivates is a Ma Ingalls type. Here’s her description under her photo of the creek by their home on their property. It’s true. Read for yourself.

We have a tiny little sliver of water not far from us that you could call a creek if you were in a particularly generous mood. It’s got some sand by it that the kids really like. Be blessed that this is not a scratch and sniff picture because the creek doesn’t always smell all that good, especially if it hasn’t rained in a while. But if your nose is slightly stuffy, it can be pretty fun.

Here’s her description of her home they moved into several years ago:

So, three years to the day later, we’re making it out in these modest woods. These acres would not be beautiful to everybody but they’re beautiful to us. Life has been brand new out here. I won’t kid you. It’s been an adjustment. A lot less eating out. A lot more cooking. A lot more driving to work. The cars stay filthy. The raccoons won’t stay out of the trash. Fed Ex never can find us. But we don’t mind. Because it was time to make a move. For us, it was out where the dawn breaks to the crow of a rooster.

She presents that veritably, she’s scrimping and saving, eating peanut butter sandwiches by firelight to save on electricity but sighing contentedly amid all this hayseed hardship. What Moore doesn’t tell you is that the Moore property in Tomball TX, these “modest woods,” as she puts it, that “would not be beautiful to everybody,” is part of a 46 acre enclave with its own road, two houses with total of 7 bedrooms and 7 1/2 baths, custom outdoor kitchens and fireplaces, a combined square footage of 6600 sf, and assessed by Harris County TX at $1.8 million dollars. What she wants to evoke in your mind with her carefully worded PR is this:

source

when what her property really is, is this:

Note the size of the lot compared to surrounding lots. Ahem. Modest? No.
Clip shows about a quarter the actual size of the lot

It’s an enormous private property. The house isn’t as large as other mega-rich pastors’, to be sure. Her home, house A on the tax map, is 4500 square feet, (still 10X the size of my home), with 4 bedrooms, which does make sense as a family with two grown daughters and lots of grandchildren running around. But the land is a huge parcel, YUGE. The other home, House B, is for the in-laws, a 3BR home 2,200 sf in size.

To be fair, Moore moved to this enclave of 46 wooded private acres with creek and two homes, according to her blogs, was so that she and her husband Keith could give Keith’s father a quality of life in his final days, close to the family and away from the busy city. I say if you have the means to provide a house and atmosphere for elderly parents close to the nuclear family, more power to you. It honors the mother and the father as the Commandment said.

But the down-home, aw shucks lifestyle is an image, not the reality. It’s PR, and it’s not honest. The reality is, Beth Moore is President of a globally known corporation, with a constant annual salary of a quarter of a million dollars, and its net worth last year of 15 million, living in a large home in pristine wooded enclave of 46 acres outside a major city, held in a trust, with all the toys and machines one could hope for in this enclave like tractors and golf carts etc. Her social-collegial sphere is populated with other mega-rich pastors and leaders, hobnobbing with the glitterati, and flying by private plane, just like Kenneth Copeland, Jesse Duplantis, and Benny Hinn do. This is NOT a “modest” lifestyle.

This is a screen shot from the tax return FY ending 2015 for
net worth of Living Proof Ministry.

Below, Moore with mega-rich pastrix Victoria Osteen and friends. Joel Osteen’s net worth (and his wife Victoria’s, pictured below) is estimated at $40 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. Meanwhile, BeliefNet has Osteen, 54, listed as the fifth richest pastor in America. Source heavy.com, Aug, 2017. Friends of a feather.

Source

I’ll tell you what’s “modest”. Modest woods and filthy cars and sandy creeks, bah. Let’s get real about these terms Moore uses.

Me, I live modest. All my clothes are hand me downs. I drive a 20-year-old car that’s constantly in the repair shop. I live paycheck to paycheck, most of which is gone the first day I receive it each month. My domicile is a 400 sf apartment. A luxury for me would be to get my hair styled in a salon, and not the assembly line barbershop I usually go to. Or, not having to buy food that is expiring because I can save a dollar, is modest. My sphere is populated with other lower middle to middle-class folks who are just trying to make it, too. My sphere does not include private planes, fellow rich friends, wooded enclaves, and custom outdoor kitchens. It’s populated with middle class folks who really scrimp and save.

My concern is not so much the income or the large property Moore lives on, but the carefully curated image designed to deceive people into thinking she is less well-off than she is. It’s the hypocrisy. But wait, there’s more.

Beth Moore does not own a private jet, (yet) but she is given one to use. LifeWay, who partners with her in producing the Living Proof Live events, jets her around on a private plane, half the cost of which is paid by LifeWay and half by Living Proof Ministry. Is this any different than Kenneth Copeland or Jesse Duplantis jetting around in their jets for “ministry,”? Is this how LifeWay spends its ministry money, jetting Beth Moore from state to state?

These screen shots below are from publicly available Living Proof Ministry’s posted tax returns. Their returns are open for public inspection.

The screen shot below says “President Beth Moore on ocassion [sic] traveled by private plane to events as the ministry saw necessary. LifeWay, a partnering nonprofit, paid for 50% of the cost of the private plane, the remaining 50% was paid by Living Proof Ministries.”

Below, is this what Hillsong congregants expect their tithes and offerings to go, subsidizing a celebrity speaker’s luxury travel?

“Elizabeth Moore flew first class for a speaking engagement to Australia for the Hillsong Conference. Her daughter Melissa Moore, who is also an employee of Living Proof Ministries, traveled with Mrs Moore as her assistant. As per contract, Hillsong reimbursed Living Proof for the price of two coach tickets. Living Proof paid the difference. The benefit was not included as taxable compensation since it was ministry related, allowing Elizabeth and Melissa Moore to both work on the flight and continue working immediately upon arriving in Australia.”

Oh! Just like when Jesse Duplantis said he needed a private plane. For work. Or when Kenneth Copeland said he needed a private plane. For work.

LifeWay Christian resources is under the umbrella of the Southern Baptist Convention, as is the International Mission Board. (also here).

I want to relate these facts I’ve shared to the Bible. Paul sent Timothy to the baby church at Corinth. (1 Corinthians 4:17). The Southern Baptist Convention through its sub-arm International Mission Board sends missionaries abroad to plant churches and to help baby churches. Same-same. So far so good.

Last year (2016) the IMB recalled about 1000 missionaries in a cost-cutting measure. Not good. The other part of the SBC ‘body’, its sub-arm Lifeway, subsidizes private planes for Beth Moore.

Would Paul recall Timothy’s mission from Corinth in a cost-cutting measure, and then turn around and use the money the very poor church in Macedonia collected (2 Corinthians 8:1-3) to fund his luxury travel? Would he? Think on this: while the SBC-IMB is calling missionaries home to save money, the SBC-Lifeway is spending money for Beth Moore & family’s private plane.

This should not be.

When Beth Moore traveled to Hillsong Australia with her daughter, Hillsong paid her Coach plane fare, but that wasn’t good enough. Beth Moore then used her LP Ministry money to upgrade herself and her daughter’s travel to luxury First Class. For work.

The Living Proof Ministry does donate to worthy causes, their philanthropy is clear and present. It’s not all bad. But the hypocrisy evident in Beth Moore’s carefully presented down-home image and the reality of the money-money-money that includes private plane travel for her and her daughter needs to be exposed.

It’s a fact that Moore is not a down-home sister, but is in theology and in lifestyle more similar to Joyce Meyer and Victoria Osteen.

Paul had advice on how to engage with Believers and Gentiles.

19 For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. 20 To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. 21 To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. 23 I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings. (1 Corinthians 9:19-23).

Paul did not say he needed a pillowed palanquin, for work. He did not take the Macedonian church’s ministry offering and upgrade himself to a first class cabin on the ship. He did not pretend to sew tents for work by a sandy, smelly creek while actually writing his epistle from a palace filled with luxury comforts on the personal estate of Felix. Paul was real. His life was transparent and open, and he well knew how it would look to present one image while living another. It’s called hypocrisy.

Birds of a feather flock together.

Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 9:18,
What is my reward then? Truly that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel.

Paul had a right to be supported. All true ministers do. It is good for the minister to be supported and good for the hearer to give. But for the sake of those who are weak, and for several other reasons, Paul chose to give up his right, for the sake of the Gospel. Gill’s Exposition says of the verse,

that I abuse not my power in the Gospel; his right of having a maintenance, whilst he was preaching the Gospel; to have made use of which would have been an abuse of it, since it would have given occasion to the false apostles to reproach and calumniate, and might have been an hindrance to the Gospel of Christ, and a stumbling to some weak minds.

Leaders must make wise choices about their lifestyle for the sake of the Gospel and not appear to be abusing it like Beth Moore does for self-indulgences and personal luxuries.

I’m a reasonable person. I know that weather, illness, and emergencies sometimes impact the travel plans of a busy and sought-after speaker. Earlier on in Moore’s ministry, the tax records show an occasional chartered plane. I understand this. Sometimes you’ve got to get to where you’re going in order to honor a commitment. However, Moore’s upgrading herself and her daughter to first class on the Living Proof Ministry’s dime for the excuse that she can “work” isn’t any different from the word of faith preachers’ excuses. Also, using ministry money for private jet travel on both Lifeway’s and LPL’s dime is extremely questionable. This is how a person gets to be a Jesse Duplantis or a Kenneth Copeland. This is how it begins. And for Beth Moore, it has  begun.

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Further Reading

What Does The Bible Say About Material Possessions?

Is owning material things bad? If you are very wealthy, are you in sin? Is there a line drawn in the sand about owning material possessions? Well, the Bible does talk about money and material things quite a bit and doesn’t leave anything for debate. Can you own lots of material possessions and be without sin? The answer is yes, but that road, my friends, is a very treacherous and hard road to walk rightly with the Lord. Let’s look into scripture and see what the Bible says about material things.

From October 2017: Top 15 Richest and most Successful Pastors In the World 

You can’t get on a long tube with a bunch of demons. It’s deadly!

Megachurches and mega-rich pastors, a graphic

Non-Profit tax returns: search

 

Was this devoted Catholic man swept to heaven upon his death as the obituary states?

Here is the opening of an obituary that was publicly posted online.

On Monday night, May 18, 2015, the Lord swept Marcell “John” Moore, the dearly loved patriarch of our family, to Heaven, after he’d overcome enormous health challenges for years, valiantly cheating death again and again.

That is a sweet and loving opening sentence honoring a man who was obviously dearly loved by his family.

Who are swept to heaven upon death? We know from the Bible that those who go to heaven are people who do the will of the Father, repenting of sins and believing in the Son, in faith alone by grace alone. The obituary continues:

Alongside his wife, John was a devoted Catholic and his faith in Jesus Christ grew dearer and dearer to him. They were members of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Houston for many years then, after moving to the country beside their son and daughter-in-law, they became members of Saint Anne Catholic Church in Tomball, Texas.

Uh-oh. If a person believes in the dogmas of Rome, they are believing in a very different Jesus. The Roman Catholic beliefs are heretical, and aberrant.

This obituary is now so sad! It states that his wife is also Catholic, and I know that the man’s adult son is Catholic and so is/was an elderly aunt. Being a devoted Catholic for all one’s life does not bode well for the man’s eternity!

I hope and pray that someone is sharing the true Gospel of Jesus with this family, so they can repent and believe. Catholic men and women are a mission field, and should be treated with respect but told the truth. Their dangerous state should not be whitewashed over, nor hidden from them. Confident declarations about their entrance to heaven must definitely not be part of their spiritual landscape nor codified forever in a widely read blog obit.

Witnessing to family is the hardest mission, I personally believe. I’ve had most of my own trials with family, who range from Jewish to Episcopalian/Catholic to atheist to Unitarian etc. I know it must be hard to face a family member and share the Gospel with them as their growing realization dawns that the sharer is telling them the Gospel because they think he isn’t part of the family of faith. Truthful discussions with Catholic family members about Mary as co-redemptrix, purgatory, baptismal regeneration and the like will likely spark tension, if not fury. Anger ensues, heartache, perhaps even a family rift. No one likes that. But the alternative, an eternity possibly in hell if the Catholic does not repent and believe, is worse.

No I take that back. Just as bad is the family member who claims to be a Southern Baptist Bible teacher, writing an obituary that confidently asserts that the staunch Catholic loved one who passed is now being swept into heaven. That’s bad.

The Moore family being spoken of here is Beth Moore’s. Her beloved father-in-law John Moore, husband Keith’s father, passed away two years ago and the above obit was posted on Moore’s Living Proof blog.

Beth Moore’s assertions gloss over the hard truth that people who hold to heretical beliefs about Jesus and His Church are under His wrath, not His love. Their destination, if they do not repent, is eternal darkness. Do we ignore an entire mission field? Are the other Moore family members now assured of their own eternal destination because of the confident but sadly erroneous assertions of the wayward daughter-in-law, who, after all, holds an honorary Doctorate and has spent the last thirty years teaching the Bible?

The truth of the matter is that Beth Moore married into a situation where she is spiritually mismatched. She is unequally yoked. (2 Corinthians 6:14). Her husband Keith is a Catholic. Inevitably when one is spiritually mismatched one begins to compromise. This is one reason it says in the Bible not to do it. Believers and unbelievers (and Catholics are unbelievers if they hold to the doctrines of Rome) are opposites, just as light and darkness are opposites. They have nothing in common and indeed cannot become “one flesh” as Jesus said that married partners do become. Unless both partners are unbelievers. Then of course they are one flesh. Sadly, many think they are saved but they are not, as Jesus said will be revealed on His day (Matthew 7:21).

Regarding the unequally yoked,

Paul is drawing his analogy from the Old Testament prohibition against yoking an ox with a donkey (Deuteronomy 22:10). Related to this verse is Leviticus 19:19 which warns of breeding differing kinds of livestock. Animals that were yoked had a piece of wood used to connect them, each with their own collar, so that their combined abilities could more easily perform a particular task. Oxen, horses, donkeys, and mules paired in this fashion were good for pulling a load, plowing a field and so on. Farmers knew that it was not wise to unequally yoke animals together.

When people like Moore compromise, glossing over the drastic differences of the belief systems of believers and Catholics, it destroys hope. Here is John MacArthur at Ligonier:

Compromised truth has no hope of rescuing the eternal souls of men and women who have been unwittingly ensnared by the trap of devilish deception. … Furthermore, embracing those heretical systems falsely reassures their followers that all is well between them and God, when actually they are headed for eternal damnation. Partnering in a spiritual enterprise with unbelievers helps Satan muddy the doctrinal waters, and it cripples our ability to preach the need for repentance.

Now you know why Moore pushes for “unity” and includes that unity with the Catholic Church. And now you know why she has ‘visions’ from some person claiming to be Jesus of the global church which contains the Catholic “denomination”. Now you know why she teaches with a host of women from many denominations on her stage, including Catholics, and calls them all sisters. Now you know why Moore teaches Catholic practices like Lectio Divina and contemplative meditation and labyrinths.

LifeWay estimates that in 2017 alone Beth Moore’s Living Proof Live conferences plus her simulcasts reached 268,000 women. This figure does not include the impact her books & studies have, and her television broadcast.  Now you know where the real money is. Compare that below with LifeWay’s ministry to men. What a sad state of aberrant theological influence.

lifeway
It is a serious thing for a woman with this much influence to claim with certainty that her Catholic father-in-law is swept into heaven.

I pray someone shares the true Gospel with the Moores. All of them.

Beth Moore calling down fire

fire fall down

This article from Charisma Magazine, published August 2, 2017, was something of an amazement to me. I should not be amazed, but I am. And not in a good way.

Here is an excerpt from J. Lee Grady’s article titled How Beth Moore is Calling Down Pentecostal Fire:

I’ve been in countless Christian meetings over the years, but last week, I witnessed one of the most remarkable spiritual moments of my lifetime.

I was attending a gathering of Pentecostals held at a convention center in Orlando, Florida. When the speaker concluded the sermon, people began to stream to the altar. Many of them—including pastors—lay prostrate on the floor. Many were sobbing uncontrollably. Some people wept and prayed for an hour after the meeting was dismissed.

You may ask, “What’s so remarkable about that?” This meeting, held on July 26, was unique because the speaker was a Southern Baptist—and a woman. Yet her message was so convicting and so saturated in the Holy Spirit that people ran to the stage even though she didn’t even invite people to the altar.

The woman was author and popular women’s speaker Beth Moore, and the occasion was the 28th General Conference of the International Pentecostal Holiness Church. Leaders from the Assemblies of God, the Church of God and Nigeria’s Redeemed Christian Church of God were in attendance, along with thousands of Pentecostals from all over the world.

Moore based her message on Jeremiah 12:5: “If you have run with the footmen, and they have wearied you, then how can you contend with horses?” Without a tinge of self-righteousness or condemnation, Moore lamented the powerless state of the modern church and called us back to the raw authenticity of New Testament faith.

“We are settling for woefully less than what Jesus promised us,” said Moore. “I read my New Testament over and over. I’m not seeing what He promised. I’m unsettled and unsatisfied.”

She added: “I want holy fire!”

I don’t know what is more fascinating—that a Baptist challenged Pentecostals to embrace Pentecostal fire or that a woman who is not supposed to preach to men in her own denomination brought male pastors to their knees in repentance.

I don’t know what is more fascinating, the complete rebelliousness of Moore’s preaching, the dangerous and ignorant plea for God to send down fire, or the flat declaration by Moore that she is unsatisfied and unsettled with a lack of fulfillment in God’s promises.

Let’s look at the Charismatic penchant for wanting fire. We hear about that a lot- teachers, preachers, and lay-people, begging for fire.

In this GotQuestions article we readof the reality of fire from heaven. How many times has God sent fire from heaven? The Bible records six times when He sent fire from heaven.

1. God allowed satan to send fire from heaven to destroy Job’s flocks.
2. God sent fire in the form of burning sulfur to Sodom & Gomorrah
3.  God also used fire from heaven to judge the soldiers sent by the wicked king Ahaziah to arrest Elijah
4. & 5. Twice, fire descended from heaven to consume a group of fifty soldiers sent on the king’s business (2 Kings 1:10, 12).
6.  God sent fire from above in order to consume a sacrifice

Fire from heaven is predicted for the future as well. In the end-time Tribulation, the false prophet will cause fire to come down from heaven as a counterfeit miracle designed to deceive people into worshiping the Antichrist (Revelation 13:13).

And, at the end of the millennium, God will instantly destroy the armies of Gog and Magog with fire from heaven (Revelation 20:9).

So, do we really want fire to fall down from heaven? Really? Why do these false teachers constantly ask for fire from heaven? Do they think it makes them look pious? It only reveals their biblical ignorance.

They know not what they ask. Their ends will be as they deserve. They twist the Bible they deceive the people, they scratch itching ears, and they heap up followers. Sadly, instead of glory and peace, they will receive fire. They will get the fire they asked for.

But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. 2 And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. 3 And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep. … Then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, 10 and especially those who indulge in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority.
(2 Peter 2:1-3; 9-10).

say to those who prophesy from their own hearts: ‘Hear the word of the Lord!’ 3 Thus says the Lord God, Woe to the foolish prophets who follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing! (Ezekiel 13:2b-3).

And you, son of man, set your face against the daughters of your people, who prophesy out of their own hearts. (Ezekiel 13:17).

Lord, haste the day when lying diviners and deceitful prophetesses will be no more.

 

Picture Mixture Thursday: Polaroid’s back, new feature called Crypti-tweet, Prototype movie, more

Photos for you today.

Great news! Polaroid is back. Instant, analog photos. Good. Digital photos are fun but do not have the same sense of generational care and personal story that well-worn photo album with analog photos does. And the Polaroid instant aspect is just a super bonus. No more waiting for film to be developed and returned from the store! The original Polaroid was launched 80 years ago. Wow. You can also buy vintage original Polaroid cameras at the new site for as little as $19. Hmmm.

polaroidonestep2feat-800x420

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As Hurricane Harvey and Irma leave devastation in their wake, we remember the costliest and deadliest hurricane in the US ever, the 1900 Galveston Hurricane. Isaac’s Storm was a fantastic non-fiction book recounting the storm, its people, and the result- birth of the modern National Weather Service. Meanwhile, here is an interesting project that released today at the Toronto Film Festival. It’s called Prototype,

Revisiting a Devastating 1900 Hurricane in an Experimental 3D Filma non-narrative journey through the aftermath of the Great Galveston Hurricane shot in crisp 3D.

I like stereoscopic photographs, and occasionally post one here from an old book called Earthly Footsteps of the Man From Galilee, pictures taken in the stereoscopic format in the late 1800s and compiled into a book. My grandparents had a stereoscope and a library of photos I used to look through. It transported me to foreign lands and sparked my imagination.

The Prototype movie opens by using vintage stereoscope cards, a primitive 3D viewing method popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The stereoscopic cards in question are souvenirs made from photographs of the devastation wrought by the Great Storm of 1900, a hurricane that struck Galveston, Texas, says the movie’s synopsis. Here is a review of the movie a critic saw as a sneak peek. Here is a review of the movie a critic saw as a sneak peek.

prototype

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Unsplash- a repository for high-resolution, creative commons, available-to-use photos. The photography is so outstandingly beautiful and mine just do not belong there! These photos will take your breath away. Just go look, if you want something gorgeous to feast on. Here are just 2. Use Unsplash for your blogs, you can search by photographer or theme.

igor-ovsyannykov-223090

unsplash1

 

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Here’s a very funny photo publicizing the new study group based on work done by Jess Pickowicz in writing a study guide to go along with the MacArthur & Mayhue tome Biblical Doctrine:

biblical doctrine chickens

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Here’s a new feature I made up called Crypti-tweet. These are tweets from self-professed Bible teachers or Christian leaders which make no sense. I know it’s hard to say what you want to say within the confines of 140 characters, and we all flub up sometimes. I’m not talking about those tweets.

I’m also not talking about the poetry we sometimes get carried away with tweeting, tweets that attempt to capture an ephemeral but powerfully real spiritual emotion we might have been feeling at the moment. I’m not talking about those intensely personal and understandable but generally cryptic-to-outsider tweets either.

No, I’m talking about teachers or leaders who are charged with making sense, as in, that is their sole task, (able to teach, 2 Timothy 2:24) but consistently issue tweets that are just insane sounding, ergo, directly contradicting the one and only skill-level command that the Bible insists that teachers possess, which is “making sense”. Here is Beth Moore, inaugurating the Crypti-tweet:

cryptic 4 moore

Till next time!

Spot the self-refutation: Beth Moore

When the Be Still DVD was issued in 2006, Beth Moore’s participation in what was obviously a mystical/pagan promotion of Eastern Religious prayer practices caused an uproar. This was 11 years ago at this writing and Moore was seen as solidly solid then. Moore issued a clarification and retraction and apology for her participation, saying it was “hugely accidental” if she participated in something unsound. She assured her audience-

Beth Moore 1: “I am not involved in any kind of emergent church movement or any kind of mystical prayer movement.”

Then she continued in her apology, clarifying her words that ended up on the DVD-

Beth Moore 2: “Here’s what I intended to say: pray, pray, and pray some more and learn how to listen for God’s response.”

The two comments are from the same piece of writing. Do you see what I see?

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Here is Moore a few years later participating in a mystical prayer experience of Lectio Divina. Photo source: Sola Sisters.