Seven major concerns about Bethel Church…

Nobody seems to get demonized and mischaracterized by the self-appointed watchdogs and modern day witch hunters on the Internet than Bill Johnson and Bethel Church. Here’s a great response from Jonathan Welton this week in answer to more of the same misinformed and unfounded tripe from the “Bethel” bashers. I pray we all finally see that we’re on the same team and start operating from love instead of out of fear, praying for one another and encouraging one another instead of “biting and devouring” one another. Amen.

Disrupting Culture

Hi Jonathan,

I understand that you probably are bombarded with email daily, so I understand if you do not or cannot respond, but upon receiving this information you were the first person that came to mind. I really have a lot of respect for you because you truly back everything up with the Word of God & indeed you are a student of the Word.

I recently was watching some Bethel Worship on Youtube and Jenn Johnson was leading and singing prophetically. I love Bethel Worship for many reasons but mainly because they convey the heart of the Father…well when I looked down at the comments, people had some really interesting things to say concerning Bethel. Calling them a cult and saying that Jenn was dressed seductively and singing in a seductive manner (she had on a dress down to her ankles). It really bothered me so I asked where…

View original post 1,143 more words

About Mel Wild

God's favorite (and so are you), a son and a father, happily married to the same beautiful woman for 37 years. We have three incredible adult children. My passion is pursuing the Father's heart in Christ and giving it away to others. My favorite pastime is being iconoclastic and trailblazing the depths of God's grace. I'm also senior pastor of Cornerstone Church in Wisconsin.
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14 Responses to Seven major concerns about Bethel Church…

  1. dcummuta says:

    Very good! Thanks for this one. It’s sad how people operate out of a predetermined opinion before really looking into things. May God’s body be united more and more everyday!

    • Mel Wild says:

      Amen! Yes, it is sad how Christians operate so much out of fear and automatically assume the worst about people who have a different interpretation of doctrine in areas that are not the central tenets of the faith. It’s dysfunctional, really. But if we operated out of love instead our insecurities and fear, we might actually start listening to one another and learn something. And God would be glorified instead our opinions. Just a thought. 🙂

  2. Anonymous says:

    There are some churches here in Seattle that get overly criticized by ‘fellow believers.’ Instead of criticizing I wish that, as you said, it would be a call to prayer and encouragement. I often wonder how today’s church would treat Hosea if he were living today.

    • Kathleen says:

      Mel, this is Kathleen… for some reason it posted as Anonymous? Had to try several times to comment— almost wondered if there were ‘spiritual forces’ involved! 🙂 Like I had something profound to say!

      • Mel Wild says:

        LOL! And you DID have something profound to say! I’m glad you prevailed and got through. Apparently, the “WordPress monster” got a hold of it. 🙂
        I’ve had weird stuff like that happen before with the blog. For instance, sometimes it just decides that people’s responses should go into the spam folder. Pretty strange.

    • Mel Wild says:

      Yes, or imagine if Jesus planted a local church in your town. It would probably be full of lowlifes, prostitutes, drug dealers, meth heads, convicted felons and people kicked out of the local “behaving” churches. And then, what about all the miracles and healings? Yikes! Nobody told Jesus that He should be cessationist! 🙂

  3. Ayanda says:

    Hi Mel, thanks for the post as always. I sometimes feel like a child in these matters and all this arguing sometimes just manifests itself as noise in my mind so I can’t make heads or tails about what it all about. I’ve figured this much; Bill Johnson is being dragged out for a public flogging again ( Its getting old, yet still so painful). Mel for some reason you are the guy who divides the word for me in a manner I can understand (for some reason you pulled that short straw :-); see how much my Daddy loves me) so I have a few cats to throw on your lap. What is WOF, what is NAR and what are “Manifest Son’s of God” I know you will come back with something I can understand. Love you Mel.

    P.S. Last weekend I e-mailed my testimony to you and I hadn’t checked it through (all explained in the e-mail) I did get the courage to look through it and I found some errors like omitted words (I’m not the best typist) which changed context in some of what I was communicating. If you hadn’t got around to reading it that is cool because I have to send you the edited version, if you had gotten around to it I will still send you the edited version just with highlights on the corrections. Once again Thank You Mel

    • Mel Wild says:

      LOL! Okay, the cats…WOF stands for “Word of Faith” movement. I’m assuming you’re familiar with it–the emphasis of faith is on the words you speak, etc. NAR is “New Apostolic Reformation.” It’s basically saying the five-fold ministry in Eph.4:11 is still relevant and very much needed for the Church today–apostles, prophets…although not in the sense of writing Scripture or anything like that. They are simply equipping and Kingdom building gifts to the Church. “Manifest Sons of God” comes from Rom.8:19. It’s had a somewhat dubious start a couple decades ago and got a bad rap. But the truth is, we were adopted as sons of God! All through the New Testament we are called sons (not gender-related, but relational term). So, today, it’s really tied to sonship and coming out of our orphan Christianity.
      That’s the extremely brief overview on these things. 🙂

      And I did read your testimony and responded by email a few days back. Didn’t you get it? I could try sending it again.

      • Ayanda says:

        Hi Mel, thanks for your prompt reply. Though brief your answers are very helpful, its still 7am on my side so I’m just starting my day and now I don’t have to be under a cloud of confusion for the rest of it :-).

        I didn’t get you response ( did you send it by sea LOL!!! Just joshing you) could you please try this e-mail address instead…

      • Mel Wild says:

        I will resend today. Let me know if you got it.

  4. Mel, this post is incredibly timely. We’ve recently been called from our church home of 14 years by the Lord…and to a new one that is similar to Bethel – and hated nearly as much. Things happen which are so far outside my box that I might have to hire a private charter to get me there!

    Last night I stayed up late to discuss this with the Lord – to ask Him what’s right and wrong in some of these matters.

    I have spent decades getting out of the trench that my childhood church put me in concerning “full gospel” congregations. Bethel is in our town, so they were the main topic of diatribes concerning the “Holy Spirit foolishness” that was so hated by our pastor.

    Wouldn’t you know that God led me to a Bethel home study group shortly after high school! I went to please my husband – but was scared to death of going into “satan’s lair” like that and asked God to protect me! That night, He used one of the elderly ladies to bring healing to my injured back (never dive head-first off a high dive if you don’t know what you’re doing!).

    The next year, I was in the hospital, dying from complications due to pregnancy. Some pastors from Bethel stopped by and prayed for me. Not only did I survive (obviously!), but the child I was carrying – who was supposed to be born with brain defects due to oxygen deprivation – turned down an intelligence job for the military because he doesn’t want to keep secrets from his wife!

    Both of these were undeniable…and God received the glory for His mercy and grace. (And my doctor became a believer due to all the “freakin’ miracles” got performed before his very eyes!)

    Fast forward thirty years, and I found myself in a congregation that, over time, developed the same attitude as the first one.

    This is the time about which the Bible says there will be deception. As a result, I frequently ask for discernment. Not only do I want to avoid being deceived by “lying signs and wonders,” but absolutely DO NOT want to be responsible for leading others astray. I write – others listen…that’s a responsibility I do not take lightly! As a result, I err on the side of caution.

    The more I discuss this with the Lord, the more He repeats three words to me: “Love one another.” Every time I say, “But they…” He repeats himself, “Love one another.” I have a feeling I’m in for a major growth spurt!

    There are many questions I have concerning my new place in the body of Christ, but don’t want to voice them here out of respect for my prior congregation. I think I have my answer, but am unsure how to proceed…and keep myself on the narrow road. Please pray that the Lord would give me understanding in this matter.

    Thanks for your blog. I read whenever I get the chance (not often these days), but have great respect for your wisdom and leading.

    In His Majesty’s service,
    Praising Jesus who sets me free!

  5. Mel Wild says:

    Thanks for sharing this. We have one former ministry student attending Bethel’s school and couple of others living there and attending Bethel church. I also know a lot of leaders affiliated with Bethel. Having read a lot of hate-speech on the Internet, I can tell you with no uncertainty that it all either comes down to demonizing them out of complete ignorance of what they actually believe or do, or it’s because of a difference of opinion over interpretation of Scripture. Neither reason is good, nor does it glorify the Lord. For all sides agree on the central tenets of the faith. To me, this is just an orphan mindset rather than one coming from the love of the Father. So, you could not be more correct–it all comes down to LOVE!

    And I hear you on the church thing. Having been involved in various churches, both as a leader or an attender–all the fads, beliefs–for four decades now, I really think that evangelicals are about the most relationally dysfunctional lot on the planet! We’re obsessed with being against things and being paranoid about false prophets and lying wonders, etc. First, when Paul was warning Timothy about the “last days,” he was talking about HIS day (and every day forward). But we, in our self-centered Western mindsets, have turned it into something unique about today. And that is taking these things out of their context and “Westernizing” them. It’s bad hermeneutics based on our personal bias, not on what Scripture actually says. Secondly, the “lying signs and wonders” are in context with what the Antichrist is doing (2 Thess.2:9), so I guess these people are saying that people like Bill Johnson are the Antichrist and we must be in the Great Tribulation (ironically, that they think they will miss!) Either way you look at it’s totally absurd!

    Anyway, good talking to you again. I love your blog also. Good stuff! I’m getting ready to leave town for a couple of days so I won’t be able to catch up until Sunday or Monday. Blessings.

  6. So glad I came to see if you commented. I didn’t get your response this time. I’ve been having quite a chat with the Lord about this topic. Tomorrow’s post (Get Your Babel On) addresses this topic. It’s sure to raise some interesting conversations!

    Abba isn’t blowing up my box. Instead, it’s more like “What box??”! 🙂 There’s a whole lotta stretching going on here. I feel a bit like the middle of a taffy pull at the moment, but it will be good when the Lord is done.


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