A CRITIQUE OF THE HIGHER LIFE MOVEMENT

Higher-Purpose

A CRITIQUE OF THE HIGHER LIFE MOVEMENT 

By Jay Wegter

INTRODUCTION

The concept of the higher Christian life arose in the nineteenth century in connection with the holiness tradition in America.  The movement grew in popularity and ultimately spread to England.  Keswick, England became the home of the higher life conventions.  In time, the movement returned to America with great momentum.  “The Higher Life movement has influenced the rise of other theologically conservative movements, the founding of a number of institutions, the growth of foreign missions, and the theological perspective of several denominations.”1

Description of the Movement

          The higher Christian life is an explanation of the means and methods involved in advancing the believer’s progressive sanctification.  The purpose of this paper is to identify the areas where the higher life model of sanctification differs from the scriptural doctrine of sanctification.

          Though not identical, three terms are used synonymously to refer to the movement; “The higher Christian life,” the “Victorious Christian Life,” and “Keswick Teaching.”  In this paper, any of the three terms may be used to refer to the whole body of higher life teaching.

HISTORIC BACKGROUND

          The inception of the higher life movement is often identified with the publication of William Edwin Boardman’s book, The Higher Christian Life (1858).  The book argued that Christ was to be received for sanctification sometime after justification. Continue reading

Why We Cannot Endorse Rezolution 2013

20060228081450!Stop_hand

In the lastweek or so, it has come to my attention, that many Reformed brothers and sisters in South Africa are exited about the coming Rezolution Conference , being held in South Africa in April . I have some concerns about the speakers as they are all from the Young, Restless, Reformed movement also known as the New Calvinism movement.  Hearing names like Tim Keller , who is a leader in this new movement is concerning,  as Keller,  has in recent years embraced  mysticism  &  theistic evolution. Tim Keller’s books are also highly recommended by pastors and teachers across South Africa in  Reformed churches.

While Keller claims to be a Reformed Protestant, his writings reveal a profound empathy with the Roman Catholic Church. In The Reason for God (2008) he refers to the Catholic Church as “the largest church in the world”.[2]  He explains that he believes in a broad definition of Christianity that includes the Church of Rome. He says that “all Orthodox, Catholic and Protestant Christians assent together to the great creeds.”[3] And this, in Keller’s mind, means that Roman Catholics are real Christians. He frequently quotes from Roman Catholic sources and authors. (Points 1-3 above taken from here http://www.newcalvinist.com/kellers-affinity-with-rome/kellers-mysticism/) Continue reading

Soaking Prayer? The New NAR Pagan Approach, Beware !

frog_lying_on_lily_back1

This trend will surely reach our shores soon, if it is not already in South Africa. Beware and run from these type of false teachings, beloved brothers and sisters. This new ludicrous practice is part of the New Apostolic Reformation movement (NAR) as it is typical of their style of teaching. Do not be deceived, there is nothing Biblical about this latest trend from NAR. This latest pagan ritual called “soaking prayer” is nothing but a form of Contemplative spirituality, an eastern form of meditation wrapped in a nice colored paper and disguised under the banner of Christianity. It is pagan Mysticism. Dr John MacArthur says the following about NAR :

“NAR, the New Apostolic Reformation. It is not new, it is not apostolic, and it is not a reformation, by the way. It is like Grape-Nuts, it’s not grapes and it’s not nuts, it’s like Christian Science, it’s not Christian and it’s not scientific. Well the New Apostolic Reformation isn’t new, it isn’t apostolic and it isn’t a reformation. But it is a rapidly expanding movement being generated by some of the same old troubling false teachers and false leaders that have been around in Charismania for decades, always dishonoring the Holy Spirit, always dishonoring the Scripture, always claiming miracle signs, wonders, visions, dreams.”

We previously reported on NAR in an article here: Warning! Rick Joyner to visit South Africa and Join hands with Angus Buchan

Here is how Dr  John MacArthur explains Contemplative spirituality:

Contemplative spirituality is an extremely dangerous practice for any person who desires to live a biblical, God-centered life. It is most commonly associated with the emerging church movement, which is riddled with false teachings. It is also used by many different groups that have little, if any, connection with Christianity.

In practice, contemplative spirituality is primarily centered on meditation, although not meditation with a biblical perspective. Passages such as Joshua 1:8 actually exhort us to meditate: “Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.” Notice what the focus of meditation should be—the Word of God. Contemplative spirituality-driven meditation focuses on nothing, literally. A practitioner is exhorted to completely empty his/her mind, to just “be.” Supposedly, this helps one to open up to a greater spiritual experience. However, we are exhorted in Scripture to transform our minds to that of Christ’s, to have His mind. Emptying our minds is contrary to such active, conscious transformation. Continue reading

Doctrines Of Grace – Categorized Scripture List

By Monergism

God has recently given us the opportunity to discuss some theological issues with other Christians who believe differently than we do on a number of points, most notably the doctrines of grace. In such a circumstance, given the overwhelming supply of scriptural evidence that comes to bear on the topic, it seemed to me that the best approach would be a simple categorized scripture list: the fact that the entire paper would be scriptures, with the exception of a few brief explanatory notes, would underscore the truth that this is God’s own word and teaching; and the fact that it would be categorized would facilitate the ready comparison of scripture with scripture so as to lead one to a full-orbed understanding of the biblical teaching. Although I found a few good scripture lists of that nature available online, none of them was laid out in quite the progression that I was looking for, and so I developed my own. I’m posting it here with just the scripture references. Below, for your convenience I have provided a condensed version and a full version of the study. Continue reading

Critique of Claimed Visits to Heaven and Hell

The Bible contains the whole counsel of God— everything that will be revealed before the second coming of Christ. People have written books about Heaven and Hell in the past. It used to be that they were at least in the form of fiction, like Dante’s Inferno. The books we have reviewed claim to impart new revelations to the church. As such, these books ought to be rejected. They not only teach extra biblical ideas, they teach unbiblical ideas, some worse than others. Thus they lead people astray no matter how noble the ostensible reason for writing, such as to get people to believe in the second coming or to get them to repent. They do far more harm than good. It is the Scriptures that make us wise unto salvation: “and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness”
(2 Timothy 3:15-16).  (http://so4j.com/)

The latest claim of  an alleged visit to heaven is one which was made by  a neurosurgeon,  Dr Eben Alexander , who, after falling into a coma,  said that he had experienced things he never thought possible—a journey to the afterlife. Continue reading

Entertainment and Style of Music Do Not Convert People

John MacArthur,

“It’s not the style of our music that gets people converted. It’s not because of the entertainment level that they enjoy that gets them converted. Sooner or later you’ve got to get down to confronting them with the message and my judgment is sooner is better than later. So what are we waiting for? Let’s just get them to hear the message, that’s how they’re going to be saved. Take out the preaching of sin, take out the preaching of hell, take out repentance, take out the cross, and then people will feel comfortable. That’s the new trend. Build an image of love, care, being nice and if everybody is nice, they like us, they might like Jesus. That is tragically not the case. Continue reading

Mormons A Cult

Exposing Mormon Beliefs – Way of the Master – 3 Videos

PURCHASE THIS DVD FROM THE WAY OF THE MASTER’s 3rd SEASON – GO HERE

Summed Up Info on: Mormons the Cult

Mormon’s are a very deceptive Cult, and sadly believe that God lives on a Planet called Kolab!- They believe that God is married to his goddess wife and has spirit children (Mormon Doctrine, p. 516).

Mormon’s wrongly Teach that Men can become gods, and that God Himself is merely an Exalted man.The Founder of Mormonism, Joseph Smith— is a False Teacher, who wrongly taught that Jesus & Satan are spirit brothers and we were all born as siblings in heaven to them both, (Mormon Doctrine, p. 163.). He also taught that he (Joseph Smith) would sit in Judgment of the World. He Falsely Prophesied that Quakers lived on the Moon. Continue reading