1. The Purpose Driven movement.
2. The Emergent/postmodern movement.
3. The New Apostolic Reformation movement.
The video entitled “Urban Centers–Leader Testimonies” found at this link, shows how all three groups are using Jeff Reed’s material:
Each of these groups has two things in common:
1. They have moved into Catholic mysticism:
C. The New Apostolic Reformation has become involved in the Catholic mystics through Mike Bickle and IHOP. He has been promoting Teresa of Avila in particular.
My concern is that the attempt to bring Catholic mysticism into the church has led the church away from grace and into religious works. It’s as though the Reformation led by Martin Luther never happened, and we are embracing the teachings of those who countered the Reformation — Ignatius of Loyola and Teresa of Avila — instead. We are forgetting faith alone, grace alone, scripture alone, and Christ alone.
2. Another teaching they all have in common is the teaching of a form of planetary renewal, or dominionism in the case of the New Apostolic Reformation. Each group has a different way of accomplishing their attempt to bring order to the world:
A. The Purpose Driven movement has Rick Warren’s “P.E.A.C.E. Plan.”
B. The emergents/postmodern movement has their emphasis on social justice.
C. The New Apostolic Reformation movement has their Seven Mountain Mandate.
This attempt to order the world through human effort is a futile work to restore paradise without Christ in the human heart. Is the Gospel message that we can change the planet, or any nation, through ordering the “kosmos,” thereby bringing about “shalom,” which is the ultimate place of peace and prosperity?
This is another works message! Instead of entering into Jesus’ rest, these three offshoots of the church are teaching that the body of Christ should get busy and try to set up a new garden of Eden, but only Jesus will be able to restore the earthly paradise, and only when he returns and sets up his kingdom. And I might add, he can only do it because the citizens of this kingdom have renewed hearts.
Yet, for some reason, these movements believe they can attain “divine union” with God through their ascetic practices, rather than entering boldly through the blood of Jesus, and they believe they can bring about paradise through their work. Both of these efforts have abandoned the way of GRACE. This is why I oppose Reed’s attempt to galvanize the three groups through the use of dialogue and the Socratic method.
I attended Jeff Reed’s Antioch School class entitled, Understanding the Essentials of Sound Doctrine. The title would make you think Reed was concerned about doctrine, yet his willingness to blend the gospel with any teaching or philosophy, through the use of the Socratic method, (I might call it the Hegelian “dialectic”) seems to indicate he actually has no understanding or actual commitment to sound doctrine.
If you think that I’m being concerned over nothing, that Jeff Reed is a nobody that you’ve never even heard of, then think again. He is most active outside the United States. Here is a BILD promotion just for India. In this brochure Reed states:
“BILD International has partnered with three-quarters of the major Indian church-planting organizations–each ready to train between 25,000 and 100,000 NEW LEADERS for Christ. They represent Christian “streams” including Protestant, Pentecostal, Catholic, Anglican and many others. This unprecedented cooperation–among groups so theologically diverse–makes a huge impact with incredible, documented success. Laying aside their “labels” and differences, they have joined forces to reduce duplication, harness synergies, and create an incredible force for Jesus Christ.”
Reed hopes to have 2 million churches “emerge” internationally with BILD-trained leaders by the year 2020. He also hopes to have 20,000 churches “emerge” in the United States with BILD-trained leaders by 2020. In his promotions of the BILD material he says he is hoping to “unleash a torrent”.
I wish I could join with him, because it seems like a great concept, but when I look at his Paradigm Papers, essays explaining his views on Christianity and the future of the church, I just can’t be a part of his vision. Again, I have no problem with the idea behind his teachings (church-based theological education), I just have a problem with the content of his teachings, and his willingness to blend true and false Christianity together for the purpose of harnessing “synergies” and creating “an incredible force for Jesus Christ.”