Sunday, March 15, 2009

Todd Does Not Get My Nod

Todd Bentley is in the news again (see the link in the title concerning the last time). Apparently, he's ready to reestablish himself as a ministry force in America (must be no money in ministry in Canada, eh?). He should not be allowed to do so! Not only should his ministry be rejected, no one should accept him as a brother in the Lord. He should quickly and unceremoniously be excommunicated and become a pariah to all.

Why, because he made a mistake, he sinned? No, everyone does that, and no one should be ostracized for that alone. He should be excommunicated because he insists on maintaining the very same adulterous relationship that tore apart his real marriage. Where is his admission of sin? Where is the turn from it that makes the admission plausible? As things stand, no Christian should give him the right hand of fellowship, eat with him, or so much as bid him good day.

The Gospel is surely about mercy and grace to the repentant, but not at all about making God a cuckold. I don't know what hope there may have been for restoring Todd's marriage after his repeated adulteries, but there is zero hope that he can be accepted as a minister of the gospel in good standing while he continues in that sin. There are many ministers I'd gladly tip my hat to, even though they may be a bit less than savory, but Todd gets neither a wink nor my nod!

12 comments:

  1. "there is zero hope that he can be accepted as a minister of the gospel in good standing while he continues in that sin."

    Amen pastor!

    Some have pointed out King David to me but I don't believe it applies to Christian leadership. I'm sure You don't either?

    Blessings,
    Michael

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  2. Dr. D,
    Yeah, I don't think David's sin with Bathsheeba is germane in this case, #1) because she was a widow when David married her (even though he caused it), so the adultery was not continued, i.e. he was not making a repeated choice everyday to be an adulterer, and #2) Christian leadership is not akin to being the king of a nation.

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  3. Sorry I forgot my blogger id...

    I'm still very grieved over all this! Are people more interested in seeing a gifted people back on stage "performing" than we are with dealing with the issues of the heart?

    If this had happened to a lesser known "preacher" we wouldn't even be having this discussion.

    David Copeland

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  4. I'd like to see the gifted back in action too, but first things first-- a public rebuke, and a change in direction. Todd's failures would mean nothing to me, if he acknowledged that his adultery was sin, broke off the relationship, and then endeavored to do what he could to restore his relationship with wife and children. I don't know if his marriage could be restored, I know it can't be while he's with Jessa. He snuck into the cookie jar, broke it, got caught, and now wants us to pretend that nothing happened, and let him have his cookie too! God forbid!

    You're right about the effects fame has on the application of scripture. We must think those words are only for the little and credulous folk!

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  5. SLW,

    "but there is zero hope that he can be accepted as a minister of the gospel in good standing while he continues in that sin."

    Are you suggesting that Todd should divorice his now current wife? I see the mess that his behavior has caused and to make matters worse it's been handled poorly and he may have well disqualified himself from ministry but is he still living in sin?

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  6. Ian,
    Yes, morally, theologically, he is in sin as long as he continues in the relationship that was adulterous while he was married to his former wife. There is no way to ever make that relationship acceptable. Legally, he's good to go, but his problem ministerially is not a legal, but moral. He has made a complicated sinful mess of his life, for sure, but it's not past unravelling.

    He just married the woman he had been in an adulterous relationship with while married to his former wife. A legal certificate can never put God's imprimatur on an unholy relationship. If he wants to put adultery behind him, he needs to leave the marriage he just entered into and either have it annulled or go through a legal divorce. If his true wife will work on reconciliation (she may not want to), he needs to submit himself to the process. If it does not work out, he needs to remain single (at least as long as she does).

    If he wants to minister, that is what he needs to do. If ministry and the fellowship of the saints is not important to him, let him follow his flesh, and let everyone see for certain what's truly in his heart. Precedentally, I think Ezra 10 is instructive, as well as the death of David and Bathsheba's child. There's just no way to jam disobedience down God's throat on the basis of fait accompli.

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  7. Hello Mr Thundersounds

    This is totally off topic, but I enjoy your blog and wonder if you could give me a few tips.

    I like downloading mp3s of talks, sermons and radio shows. But most of the sites I have found are from a reformed (i.e. non-pentecostal) perspective. I am a homemaker and listen to the mp3s while washing up, etc. It's really helping me to grow in knowledge, but I would like you to recommend some sites where I can download free radio and sermons from a Spirit-filled point of view.

    Excuse my cheek, but you seem a tech-savvy sort of fellow.

    Thanks
    Anthea in the UK

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  8. Anthea,
    I wish I was tech-savy, but am not in the least! Things change so fast, it's hard to keep up.

    Here are some possiblities, however, for podcasts and sermons:

    http://www.ibethel.org/ which is the Bethel Church in Redding, CA site (Bill Johnson);

    http://petersmythe.org/rf-podcasts/ which is Peter Smythe's podcast page;

    http://www.revivaljournal.com/category/podcasts/ which is David Copeland's podcast page;

    When we get up to date technologically, you'll be able to get podcasts of your's truly at http://www.evangelagk.org/. We should be up on that by June, but I won't make any promises. ;-) I'm not that interesting as a preacher anyhow!

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  9. I would also point out the continual heresy Mr. Bently propagated during his counterfeit revival. Using physical force to "cast out demons." Baptizing in the name of "the Father and the Son and BAM!" How anyone took this charlatan seriously is beyond me.

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  10. Welcome Bossman to the Sound!

    His antics seem something only the credulous could buy, but the charismatic movement has had quite the few characters (like Smith Wigglesworth and Kathryn Kuhlman) who have been eccentric yet gifted. A few well placed citations from the scripture and one has the makings of excuses for any kind of excess.

    While I agree with your discernment in this specific case, I am reticent to set a precedental principle that would automatically discount the unusual. Of course, that kind of thinking is what the charlatan counts on in order to prey on his victim!

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  11. Thanks for the welcome :-). You have a great blog going here.

    I think Biblically speaking, the way to discern if a revival is truly from God is to see if the gospel is truly being preached. We will know a true revival when the gospel message, forgiveness of sins because of the grace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, is stressed. Any healings that might happen would not take center stage and drown out the true message of the gospel, as they do in the circus-like spectacles of Benny Hinn conferences and the like.

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  12. Bossman,
    I think you're on to something. In revival, however, it's not just that the true gospel is being preached, but that it is truly being responded to (repentance and faith). Real revival = real harvest. Revivals are marked by response, whereas in seasons not marked by revival, true gospel preaching may well be going on, but there just isn't the level of response. I do believe you are correct: in true revival the miraculous and astounding serves real preaching and real response. In a carnival, is it just serves the show, it's all affect.

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Any comment in ill taste or not germane to the post may be deleted without warning. I am under no obligation to give anyone an opportunity to call me names or impugn my motives or integrity. If you can't play nice, go somewhere else and play.