Ever since the Henry Blackaby and Claude King book “Experiencing God” was published in 1976, and swept conservative churches in the late 1980s and 1990s, people, especially women, especially have been told that it is normal to experience God in various ways – including Him speaking to us.
There’s always a track-back, or a ground zero for false notions to sweep the visible church, and Experiencing God was seminal in opening the door to hearing from God. The book instructs readers to “listen for God in your quiet time, and immediately write down what He said.” There are similar instructions throughout the book. The book’s instructions for decision-making is faulty and leads to notions of God and our relationship with Him that are errant.
The 2021 Annual Meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention is occurring in a few days (June 15-16). Messengers from member churches from all over the United States have poured in to Nashville in order to attend. Normally the meeting attracts a good number of members interested in the convention’s direction, but this year there are more messengers than ever. Two overflow rooms have been set up due to high registration attendance.
Why so many? To “Take the Ship!,” the mantra and the attitude of these many extra messengers, who have arrived because they are concerned with the direction the convention of churches is heading. Women pastors are being ordained, despite the office being biblically denied to women. Women are more often regularly preaching the Sunday message, again, something the Bible forbids. Critical Race Theory & Intersectionality are infiltrating the churches due to an unfortunate passing of Resolution #9 two years ago. A general liberal drift has been observed. Many of the messengers arriving in Nashville want to stop all this, and will advocate for a return to biblical principles, especially those outlined in the Convention’s own Baptist Faith & Message, many precepts of which are regularly denied, members say.
I have regularly warned against Beth Moore’s negative influence in the Convention since 2011. Her example, her lifestyle, her doctrine, and her teachings – whether live, on DVD, or in her books and curricula – are to be avoided. Beth Moore is a false teacher.
Moore has been active in the SBC since the mid 1978, only departing the Southern Baptist Convention in a loud announcement just 12 weeks ago. What has her legacy been over these past four decades? How is her ministry faring? Is she still reaching the heights of popularity (and influence) she did in her heyday, or is her heyday still ongoing?
Churches and religious organizations are among the charitable organizations that qualify for exemption from paying income taxes. These tax-exempt charitable organizations are listed in the IRS as 501(c)(3) organizations. Beth Moore’s corporation titled Living Proof Ministries has been tax-exempt since its founding 1995. What this means is, in return for being exempt from paying taxes for the public good, the IRS requires exempt organizations to disclose IRS filings to the general public. Any non-profit organization’s tax filings can be viewed. I use ProPublica to view LPM’s filings.
The most recent filing is for the tax year 2019, filed in 2020. For the last three years, Living Proof Ministries has been operating at a loss. Tax Year (TY) 2016 was the last year, according to the filings, that LPM made money, and only $133,439 at that. TY 2017 showed a net income loss of -$540,356. TY 2018 showed a net income loss of -$722,828. This was the first year also that the Ministry’s functional income fell below 2 million dollars.
Beth Moore’s compensation is listed on the IRS return as $222,651 for a 50/hour week. The Ministry also employs her daughter Melissa, whose salary is listed as $114,241 for a 40/hour week. The Ministry reported “Savings and Temporary Cash investments” at just over $4.3million. The IRS defines this category as-
“The combined total of amounts held in interest-bearing checking and savings accounts, deposits in transit, temporary cash investments (such as money market funds, commercial paper, and certificates of deposit), and U.S. Treasury bills or other governmental obligations that mature in less than a year.”
From 2001-2016, Living Proof Ministries built its assets from $1 million to $15 million. (Source)
Beth Moore’s Salary: Fiscal Year ending 2019: $222,651 Fiscal year ending 2018: $231,205. Fiscal year ending 2017: $229,862 Fiscal Year ending 2016: $229,862
Moore’s salary is set by a process for determining compensation that includes a review and approval by independent persons, comparability data, and substantiation for the decision should the IRS require details. Whether the independent committee chose to cut Moore’s salary or she volunteered to cut it is unknown, but her salary did decrease a bit this year over last.
The section called Gifts and Grants to the Ministry shows a decline over time as well. The height of giving to LPM seems to have been 2014,
I have noticed that Living Proof’s charitable giving to other organizations and churches has gone down too. The Ministry used to be much more generous. Giving shown on the earliest online return was $225,607 and the ministry’s income at that time was 1.7 million. This past year, LPM donated only $39,000, despite a healthy savings of $4.3 million and net assets of $13,472,277. Same-amount donations of $6,500 were given to just 6 organizations last year, as opposed to generous giving to over 20 places in the earliest IRS Return posted online.
The type of organizations Moore’s Ministry donates to has drifted from churches and religious entities as it was in the earlier years, to social justice and social reform causes in these latter years. LPM’s giving in the early years included donations to various churches (including Joel Osteen’s Lakewood), missions, the International Mission Board, Bible donations, and scholarships & tuition to religious education organizations, etc.
Star of HopeMission was on LPM’s donation list this year, an organization that cares for Houston’s homeless.
Also on the donations list from Living Proof Ministry this past year was Hines Ugandan Ministries– Its ‘About Us’ says: “Hines Ugandan Ministries strives to meet the spiritual, educational and physical needs of the children and families in Kamonkoli Village through our sponsorship program, orphanage, medical clinic, AWANA program, and primary school.”
But in a marked shift in type of LPM partnerships in giving, for example, Living Proof this past year donated to Millennium Relief & Development, a community service organization. Their website lists projects such as “Aquaponics & sustainable agriculture in Egypt & the Maldives”, “Job training for human trafficking survivors in India”, and a “Women’s Center in Iraq”.
Living Proof also donated to an organization called PolishedWomen, defined as “A network that gathers working women to navigate the workplace and explore faith together in authentic community.”
Build a Better Us, whose stated mission is “To assist individuals & families through coaching and health services in order to build better communities.” Its founder Bradley J. Thompson, or “BJ,” lists himself as a life coach specializing in “Personal development – Relational development – Spiritual formation – Diversity maturity.”
Finally, the last organization on the Living Proof donation list of 6 organizations was Be the Bridge, a “racial reconciliation ministry”. There are serious concerns with the infiltration of Critical Race Theory into SBC churches, and the divisions such philosophies spark. Jesse Johnson reviewed Be the Bridgehere at The Cripplegate, saying, “Be the Bridge buys into the evolutionary lie that race defines our existence.” Living Proof Ministry has been donating to Be the Bridge for several years.
As a former investigative journalist, adhering to the adage “follow the money” yields quantifiable data, often irrefutable. Observing income, money exchanges between parties, and the data begins to tell a story. I’ll leave to you to weave that story, I just present the facts.
I hope that Beth Moore repents someday, and I do hope that her influence wanes. I hope that her ministry folds and her books go out of print. This isn’t because I dislike Beth Moore. No. She seems like a nice person to her daughters and grandchildren, and she needs salvation like any other (probably) non-saved person. I hope for those things because I mourn the women negatively affected by Moore’s false teaching and because of her unbiblical lifestyle that many women are now following. LPM states they have reached 3.9m households. Her LPM online ministry outreach reaches people on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LPM’s app and her Living Proof Blog. These social media platforms combined reached a total of 2 million people. Her daily radio broadcast reaches 531k people weekly on 397 radio outlets. LPM’s online store disseminates (false) religious teachings through audio, video and written material to the tune of 15k units shipped and 2k downloads. Onsite ministry supported 700 walk-ins.
These numbers add up to a hefty influence. In other activities, Moore is teaching at Wheaton College this July through Christine Caine’s Propel Women Cohort. And, of course, though Moore’s formal relationship with LifeWay ended, “LifeWay will continue to carry Moore’s books and study resources and she is listed as a speaker for “A Cruise with Lifeway” in October.” (Source). Though Living Proof’s net income is in the red, I don’t think her Ministry empire is in danger of immediate collapse, sad to say.
Beth Moore’s departure from the SBC, strategically announced just prior to the SBC annual meeting, in fact gives her more flexibility and latitude than ever. Sadly, her forty-year unbiblical influence leaves SBC messengers to clean up her mess in attempts to retake the ship and steer it from shoal infested rocky waters to deeper, calmer seas. I’m praying for our dear SBC messengers and that the outcome of this meeting will be unity and a return to more biblical standards, especially where it relates to women’s roles, something of which I have great concern.
Propagation of false teaching is like gangrene, Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 2:17, spreading quickly and in the end, is deadly to those who unwarily absorb it. I hope as Beth Moore departs the Southern Baptist Convention and looks to the next phases of her aging life and ministry, that she retires to her 45-acre, 2 million dollar estate in Tomball, and begins to live a quiet life (1 Thessalonians 4:11), becomes sensible, pure, and a worker at home (Titus 2:5), and most of all, that she repents. (Mark 1:15).
Did you know that for men who desire to teach, pastor, or lead, there are many more Biblical standards addressing their behavior than there are skill-level credentials? There’s just one mentioned skill: Men must be “able to teach”. But there are many more verses outlining how they are to behave. If they fail to adhere to any of the standards, including behavioral, they are disqualified from the position.
It’s the same for women. There are many more behavior and lifestyle standards than skills. If God were grading on a curve, behavior would weigh more than skills or talents. Here some of them are in Titus 2:3-5. The passage opens with admonishment for women to be reverent and ends with warnings that failure to be reverent will dishonor God’s word.
Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.
I think we all understand what it means to be reverent, not a malicious gossip, and not a drunk. What does sensible mean in this context? It is to be self-controlled and of sound mind. Mark that, I’ll come back to it. What does it mean to “dishonor” God’s word? The Greek here is blasphēmētai 987: “to slander, hence to speak lightly or profanely of sacred things.” It is to be irreverent.
Now that we know what God expects, let’s take a look at who fails the test, and why.
Celebrity ‘Bible teacher’ Beth Moore has identified herself with the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) since her earliest church-going days. She has had the support of Lifeway Books, an arm of the Convention, which has paid for half of her private jet travel to venues, including Australia, published her books, and organized her Living Proof events. She has been partnered at events with the SBC’s Ethics and Religious Commission president Russell Moore. She has been a member of SBC churches in the past (but not lately).
But all that is over, as today Beth Moore announced her split from the SBC and her departure from the Convention. This announcement is in-name-only, since she hasn’t adhered to the SBC’s Baptist Faith & Message for thirty years, and hasn’t been a member of any SBC church for a while. Her announcement today only confirms what we have known all along, she is leaving the SBC because she no longer identifies with its core beliefs. More on that in a moment.
There are many resources online to help the Christian believer strengthen her faith. We live in times where we’re blessed with being able to access some of today’s best preaching and teaching, and also can become familiar with the Divines from the past. We have podcasts, sermons, blogs, videos. What a bounty!
I always try to connect you to the most solid ministries that I can. I came across Steve Kozar’s youtube podcast the other day. His channel covers many different topics in different ways, and I stumbled onto his “Hit the Bar” portion of the channel. He and his lovely wife Paulette present a video, allow the viewer to watch for a bit, then the ‘hit the space bar’ and pause it while dissecting it off the cuff.
I was familiar with Steve Kozar’s name from having read the Pirate Christian (Chris Rosebrough) for many years. The two do a lot of apologetics and discernment work together. But I never really delved into Kozar’s own website “The Messed Up Church” until I listened to his Hit the Bar youtube/podcast and he mentioned the website with all its resources.
He was doing Hit the Bar about Beth Moore. It was the more famous clip of her 2014 speech where she talked about receiving personal revelation about a coming ‘downpour’ and ‘awakening’, that people would scoff at, where she called any disbelievers in her pronouncement ‘bullies’, and used no scripture.
Though this was an older clip of Moore, the discussion between Kozar and his wife Paulette was new. I had never listened to Kozar or his wife. In my opinion, if you really want to get a sense of a person, watch a podcast of a husband – wife team discuss something together.
Kozar and Paulette were sweet together. I loved their calm and sweet interplay. It was kind. Steve’s insights on Moore were terrific. He raised many points I had never considered, even though I’m quite familiar with that clip and Moore in general.
He said in this speech Beth Moore was laying her Charismatic cards on the table. It was 2014 and she really came out of the Charismatic closet so to speak, with being bold in speaking FOR Jesus. Kozar said, “She has no fear of speaking prophetically,” and this is a problem. He hit the bar at the points where she shuts critical thinking down, and explains how. Kozar said she was a very good actress, the entire speech felt memorized and staged, and showed that. He demonstrated how she uses false dichotomies to divide rather than unify, and how that is the beginning of a cult. Moore uses vague terms so that people can individually interpret for themselves rather than unify around a clarifying scripture or doctrine she is presenting. He noted the points at which she basked in adoration of the audience, instead of pointing to Jesus. [As a side note, Steve also has an issue with her wild eyes, as I myself noted recently.]
The Hit The Bar discussion about Beth Moore is here.
All in all, it was wonderfully insightful. I recommend Steve Kozar’s website and his youtube channel with the various types of videos and discussions.
Kozar noted that at The Messed Up Church website, a plethora of resources await the reader. In “Cornucopias“, there are links to a myriad of resources about many different false teachers. There are definitions and explanations of what apologetics is, what discernment is, and more.
Our Purpose –Confronting & Exposing Apostasy. –Explaining Biblical Orthodoxy. –Rebuilding Shattered Faith by the Light of the Gospel from God’s Word. –Returning to the Reformation principle of: –Sola Gratia, Sola Fide, Sola Scriptura (Grace Alone, Faith Alone, Scripture Alone)
Please check out The Messed Up Church website and/or the Youtube channel. It’s helpful.
The scriptures say they are enough. To use a fancier word, the scriptures are sufficient.
All Scripture is inspired by God and beneficial for teaching, for rebuke, for correction, for training in righteousness; (2 Timothy 3:16)
That about covers all of life, doesn’t it? At least it does for the Christian. See Romans 15:4 also. Yet women believers in Christ are bombarded with testimonies from alleged ‘teachers’ of the Bible, and authors and speakers, who claim that the word is not enough. They want more.
But there is nothing more than the completely sufficient word of God. As Peter said in John 6:68, Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life.”
Sarah Young is famous for starting her cottage industry of false devotionals and books for women and for children with the words “I yearned for more.”
Over the last two days I have posted something about Founders Baptist Church in Houston’s Love In Truth conference, where the theme was “Discernment, Faith, and Fidelity to the Truth.” I learned so much and enjoyed the quality of the lectures and sermons. The organization posted the videos for free on Youtube. Here is the channel with all the lectures and sermons.
I was especially interested in something Ken Ramey said in his sermon: The Discerning Listener (1 Timothy 1:3–11) | Truth In Love 2021 | Session 3. Paul is saying in 1 Tim 6:4 about a different doctrine and people who do not agree with sound doctrine,
he is conceited and understands nothing; but he has a sick craving for controversial questions and disputes about words, from which come envy, strife, abusive language, evil suspicions,
Hmmm, evil suspicions… what’s that about? It means someone ascribes evil motives to another person.
In 2011 I was invited to attend a Beth Moore Living Proof Weekend in Charlotte NC. The dear ladies wanted to share with me a female teacher whom they loved and whom they thought would edify me. Curious as to why they were so excited, I went to the weekend experience. I was new to the South and unfamiliar with Beth Moore, even though she was at a height of popularity.
When I returned I wrote up a series reviewing the weekend with my reactions. I requested an appointment with the appropriate church people to share them in private. I certainly did not want to embarrass or antagonize my former church family, but Beth Moore’s teaching was so biblically out of context-twisted, self-absorbed, and legalistic, I couldn’t remain silent. My reactions were my own.
The church’s reaction to my reaction was instantly negative. They were not happy with me. From that point I was labeled a troublemaker, a critical spirit, divisive, and my salvation was questioned. My concerns were not addressed. I was marginalized, and finally at pastoral directive, shunned. It’s a familiar story to many of you. It’s Beth Moore who is divisive, because the result of her teaching is a pile of heaped up followers on one side and marginalized or shunned discerning church women on the other.
At the time in 2011, negative reactions to Beth Moore’s teaching were relatively unheard-of. As mentioned, she was in her height of popularity. Publicly anyway, she seemed universally beloved. I had been in an arena with 12,000 joyous fans shouting praises to Moore, stomping their feet, and singing. I felt like I was the only one shouting to God for help and relief from an oppressively evil atmosphere. (Acts 19:34). I hadn’t found any significant confirmation in my real life spheres, so I went online, which wasn’t a lot more fruitful.
Thank goodness for Pirate Christian Chris Rosebrough, who had reviewed Moore’s Hebrews teaching a few years earlier. The King’s Dale had a few articles, and with those two confirmations plus the Spirit’s gift of discernment to me, I went ahead on my “Avoid Beth Moore” campaign here on my blog, (originally on blogger).
Some years ago, Justin Peters suggested to me that I compile a list of all the reviews of Moore’s teaching, book reviews, and lifestyle critiques, and make a compendium. I did. I call it “All Beth Moore Critiques in One Place.” I include my own writing in the list, and also other women’s essays and reviews, and men/pastors/theologians’. That way, the bulk of the critiques would be in one place for ease of finding, and people would not be able to easily dismiss since there are so many with not all of them written by men. (Dismissing negative reviews of Moore because it was ‘written by a man’ is a common rebuttal, though indefensible).
This week, I went through and checked every link. Some of the links had gone dead, so I found them in the web archive and that’s why some of the links go to a cache. I have centuries-old books on my shelf but 9 year old links are already dead. The internet truly is a temporary repository.
I thought Peters’ was a capital idea, and I add to the list to this day, which has grown to over 70 critiques of Moore’s ‘ministry’ works.
My exhortations since my 2011 introduction to Beth Moore remain the same, “Avoid Beth Moore.” Why? Because she has a healthy amount of followers on her social media platforms, and still gathers a crowd at arenas (when there’s no pandemic). It’s been ten years since my earliest introduction to Beth Moore and during that decade we have seen the ugly and evil fruits of her false ministry. Her influence has been in teaching a terrible hermeneutic, living and promoting a feminist lifestyle, and being an example of usurping that the metaphorical Jezebel in Revelation 2 would probably blush to see. Moore’s form of religion includes false prophesies, new revelation, legalism, Jesus as boyfriend and God as butler, and sadly, how to be a conflict-addicted shrieking harridan (the opposite of what women are called to be, which is to live a quiet life, teaching what is good, and not a busybody).
For people to say Moore just makes a few mistakes, isn’t perfect, or is temporarily off, the answer to that is NO. If a teacher is true, the Spirit will not allow them to continue twisting the precious word of God. He will not allow blasphemy to continue from that teacher’s mouth. He will reprove or correct her. He will do it through the word as she studies, through her pastor or church elders, her friends, or life circumstances that force her take note. The Spirit in a truly converted Christian points to Jesus, not satan. Her errors won’t continue for as long as thirty-plus years, which is how long Moore has been teaching erroneously.
I know that many people have pleaded with Moore to repent, to stop her blasphemies etc, but these pleas have fallen on deaf ears. The Lord has used these failed reproofs to seemingly harden her. She will eventually have to endure the consequences of her life of trading on the good name of Jesus for personal gain. (2 Corinthians 11:15).
Here is a re-posting of my series reacting to my first Beth Moore teaching. It is almost ten years since I wrote the series and a new audience has emerged who may not have come across it. I’ll also post my “All Beth Moore Critiques in One Place” link several times, too. I hope that anyone pausing at this blog long enough to read this will give these exhortations a read and pursue any of the links. Beth Moore is still dangerous, she is still leading many women astray, and it can be said, leading an entire denomination astray, too.
Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God. (Matthew 19:24).
On the Fourth of July holiday in 2016, Beth Moore tweeted about how wonderful it was to have all their friends and family with them on the holiday at “a bay house”.
When Beth Moore tweets fun tweets like that, about being unglammed in “a bay house”, she isn’t telling you the whole story. It’s not “a” bay house, it’s Beth Moore’s bay house. A fact she cunningly chose to hide in her carefully crafted tweet. At the date of that tweet, they had bought the waterfront mansion just three weeks prior.