Bill Johnson Addresses Some of the Controversies Concerning Bethel Church

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Bill Johnson recently addressed some of the points of criticism raised against Bethel Church. We believe it is helpful to talk about them here., a Christian information website, titled the interview “Bill Johnson Answers Hard-Hitting Questions About Bethel Controversies.” The interview is rather lenient, and it seems to be more of an opportunity for Bill Johnson to talk about his new book, “Good is Good,” while clearing Bethel’s name. The interview is conducted by Dr. Michael Brown, who interviewed Benny Hinn concerning controversies. In this interview with Bill Johnson, Michael Brown plainly says that he is keeping the questions short so that Bill Johnson has time to present his book.

In the interview, Michael Brown addresses three topics:

  • Sin and repentance,  which are not dealt with in Bethel Church’s teachings
  • Daughter-in-law Jenn Johnson’s description of the Holy Spirit. Jean Johnson is a pastor at Bethel Church and Bill Johnson’s daughter-in-law. She presents the Holy Spirit in the following manner: “I view the Holy Spirit like the Genie from Aladdin. And he’s blue. And he’s funny, and he’s sneaky.”
  • Grave sucking, which is the practice of soaking up deceased people’s anointing on their grave

Of course, Bethel Church is reproached for many more things, but let’s hear what Bill Johnson has to say on these three topics.

Sin and repentance

Michael Brown calls out Bill Johnson concerning a video in which Eric Johnson, pastor at Bethel and one of Bill Johnson’s son, declares that man is born good — this is clearly heresy.

What about sin, then? In the interview, Bill Johnson answers that sin exists and that repentance is necessary. What his son meant, he says, is that everyone is to be honored since they were created in the image of God.

We can only appreciate the fact that Bill Johnson recognizes that man is sinful and needs repentance. That is good to hear.

In the sermon that led to the controversy, Eric Johnson said this:

“Every government, every structure, every system fundamentally and theologically must start with the concept and the idea that people are good and they mean to do good. Even if they are not saved. We have to start with that premise.”

In the same sermon, he says:

“We have to adjust our perspective of people. We have to realize people are good and they mean to do good.”

Two months later, he talked about it again, visibly due to the criticism received in the wake of the previous sermon. In that sermon he explains that non-believers, atheists even, can do good, even more good that some Christians. He also says that even though one might do all the good they can, they cannot attain righteousness without Jesus. But by confessing Jesus, one obtains righteousness through faith.

However, he makes no mention of repentance.

But if Bill Johnson himself acknowledges man’s need to repent, what then is repentance for him?

Here is what he says about it in his book “The Supernatural Power of a Transformed Mind:”

“Renewing the mind begins with repentance. That is the gateway to retur to our original assignment on earth. Jesus said, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand”. To many Christians, repentance refers to having an altar call where people come forward and weep at the altar and get right with God. That is a legitimate expression of repentance, but it’s not what the word repentance means.. “Re” means to go back. “Pent” is like the penthouse, the top floor of a building. Repent, then, means to go back to God’s perspective on reality. And in that perspective there is a renewal, a reformation that affects our intellect, our emotions, and every part of our lives.”

In his book “When Heaven Invades Earth” is found a similar statement:

“The focus of repentance is to change our way of thinking until the presence of His Kingdom fills our consciousness.”

So when Bill Johnson recognizes that man needs to repent, he refers to that.

Thus, his definition leans more toward “seeing with God’s perspective” and/or “changing our thinking so that our conscience is filled with the presence of His Kingdom,” rather than turning from sin and to God.

For they themselves report about us what kind of a reception we had with you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve a living and true God, and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, that is Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath to come. 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10

We need to realize that we are on the wrong track, in sin, and to get on the right path.

Repentance is vital:

I tell you, no, but unless  you repent, you will all likewise perish. Luke 13:3

The Holy Spirit alone can convict of sin:

And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment; concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me; and concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father and you no longer see Me; and concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.

John 16:8-11

The Lord Jesus tells us:

No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him.  John 6:44

But then we need to accept that we are sinners, to ask God for forgiveness, and change our behavior; not “fill our consciousness with the Kingdom of God.” The apostle Paul wrote:

but kept declaring both to those of Damascus first, and also at Jerusalem and then throughout all the region of Judea, and even to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance. Acts 26:20

Here’s a very good article on repentance according to Bill Johnson.

Jenn Johnson’s description of the Holy Spirit

In this video and in that one available on YouTube, Jenn Johnson describes the Holy Spirit. She presents him as such:

“The Holy Spirit to me is like the genie from Aladdin, and he’s blue, and he’s funny – and he’s sneaky […] “

Notice how she uses the adjective “sneaky,” which comes from “snake.” This is particularly shocking. Jenn Johnson made that description multiple times (at least twice in the first video, and yet another time in the second video).

We encourage you to watch the first video (1 min 26 sec). Her attitude is particularly telling.

What does Bill Johnson have to say about it?

He explains that he wouldn’t use these terms himself, and that these statements were made a long time ago. He adds that he talked about it with her and that they solved the issue. Good!

It is sad and puzzling that those videos are still on YouTube. The second clip was posted by Bethel itself, thus they can delete it whenever they want and should do it.

Grave Sucking / Mantle Grabbing

In response to accusations, Kris Vallotton had already posted a text on the topic on Facebook. The text is contradictory, as Kris Vallotton first says that he had never heard about grave sucking until a few months prior. But further down the article, he writes that it was a running joke at Bethel. As for the rest, the position that he adopts in the article is correct in that he rebukes the idea that one could receive the anointing of a deceased person by laying on their grave.

Granted this is just a joke, it doesn’t change the fact that by not communicating about it clearly, the practice misleads many. It is a bad joke, to say the least.

In the interview by Michael Brown, Bill Johnson confirms that Bethel Church does not teach people to seek anointing on deceased people’s graves, which is good to hear.

However, he does say that God told him to honor those that he considers great men of the faith, and that if we honor them, then God can release the same anointing again. He said this in the past already, and it is the reason why he is building a library museum with artifacts from past revivals, such as items that belong to Kathryn Kuhlman. God told him that he would then receive their anointing. Bill Johnson is thus expecting to receive the anointing of the people that will be honored in his museum. Thus there is no laying on graves, but we can’t help seeing the similarities.

Bill Johnson also wrote this is his book “Physics of Heaven” :

“There are anointings, mantles, revelations and mysteries that have lain unclaimed, literally where they were left, because the generation that walked in them never passed them on. I believe it’s possible for us to recover realms of anointing, realms of insight, realms of God that have been untended for decades simply by choosing to reclaim them and perpetuate them for future generations.” (Davis, 2012) Physics of Heaven – Bill Johnson

Hence, Bill Johnson teaches that anointings are unique and can be passed on. It is possible to get a hold of them where they have been left (and thus, where would that be, other than where the person who had that anointing died?)

What should we think of this statement by Cal Pierce (previously involved in Bethel and founder of the Healing Rooms)

“It was July 22, 1999 when we re-dug the wells of healing and opened up Healing Rooms in Spokane, Washington. The healing wells of John G. Lake had been waiting to be re-dug since 1935 when he passed away. I knew for this work to be available to the whole body of Christ, the focus must come off of a man, John G. Lake, and onto the Holy Spirit.”

Further down, Cal Pierce writes:

“Where the Holy Spirit is, His anointing is available to every believer.”

It is thus to be understood that the anointing is available at a specific location. Cal Pierce explains that he went and prayed on John G. Lake’s grave every month for a year until the Lord told him that he was to open a healing room at the very place where John G. Lake had his ministry. Ironically, Pierce ran a healing room in what he believed was Lake’s home, and several years later found out that Lake’s house had been torn down and rebuilt a long time prior. Thus it was the same location, but not the same house.

Once again we read about the concept of anointings that are bound to a specific person and can be passed on. Anointings seem to rest where the person was, and it is necessary to start from there before taking it further.

What the Bible says about anointing

It is a vast topic. Nevertheless, a distinction exists between what is said about it in the Old Testament and in the New Testament.

Anointing consists in pouring oil on a person or an item. In some cases, that anointing was accompanied with divine power.

In the Old Testament, anointing was reserved for high priests, kings, and some prophets, as well as leprous people.

Biblical references: Exodus 30:25-33; 1 Samuel 10:1; and 1 King 1:39; 1 King 19:16; Leviticus 14:17.

When a king died, his successor would be anointed by a high priest or a prophet. In the case of David, however, he was anointed while Saul was still alive.

Some artefacts were also consecrated in the same manner. This is no longer to be done under the New Covenant, yet some still do it.

In the New Testament, following Pentecost, the anointing of the Holy Spirit was made available to all born-again believers.

“But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you all know.”  1 John 2:20

“As for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him.”   1 John 2:27

Then, there are gifts of the Holy Spirit, which are different for each believer:

“Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly: if prophecy, according to the proportion of his faith; if service, in his serving; or he who teaches, in his teaching; or he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.”  Romans 12:6-8

“Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are varieties of ministries, and the same Lord. There are varieties of effects, but the same God who works all things in all persons. But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. For to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, and to another the word of knowledge according to the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit, and to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, and to another the effecting of miracles, and to another prophecy, and to another the distinguishing of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, and to another the interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually just as He wills.” 1 Corinthians 12:4-11

Is grave sucking something that is really practice, or is it just a joke?

Grave sucking is in fact not a joke.

For example, Benny Hinn (who topped the list of the “friends of Bethel” on Bethel’s old website) stated that he regularly visited Kathryn Kuhlman’s grave and that he feels a special anointing when there.

John Crowder, a friend of the Johnson family, openly teaches this practice. He welcomes many Bethel students in his courses. See this video of John Crowder .

Moreover, several charistmatic magazines condemned the practice:

Other resources :

These practices are happening.

Does Bethel teach that practice?

A diversity of examples of Bethel teachings indicate that they consider that:

  • There exist special anointings;
  • Those anointings can be passed on from one person to another, as well as  (or exclusively?) after death;
  • One can “pick up” those anointings where they have been left;
  • One can “pick up” those anointings by honoring those who carried them before (could that potentially be idolatry?). This tends to remind us of veneration of saints.

From there, seeking to receive anointings on graves is not that great a stretch.

Bill Johnson may not do it, but his wife, leaders from his church, and students seem ready to engage with it.

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26 October 2016 admin News 69 Comments


  1. Anonymous

    January 20, 2018

    You are sad. You need to get filled with the Holy Spirit so you can have true discernment.

    • admin author

      January 20, 2018

      Hi Anonymous,
      Your comment doesn’t help. Let us know what’s wrong here and why.

      • Anonymous

        February 4, 2018

        What’s wrong with this article is that there is zero affirmation of anything. The article leans in with condemnation and criticism. There are aspects of Bill’s Johnson’s response that can be affirmed and this article is not an honest evaluation. Repent does mean to have God’s perspective on reality and that perspective is what causes us to turn from sin, confess, etc. You can’t repent without Truth. God’s perspective is the true perspective. I will not waste my time finding other things to affirm (Elijah and Elisha…MANTEL?? HMMM..Moses and Joshua…Mantel…Hmmm) because this author’s of this article had an agenda when it was written. Blah Blah Blah….I am so happy the author have squared the corners on Christianity and have the correct/only interpretation of Scripture, and defines who is in and who is out. Very arrogant, no humility, and not in the spirit of the God I serve. I have no issue with FAIR HUMBLE ASSESSMENTS….this is far from it.

        • Gene Anderson

          August 5, 2018

          I have been a believer for 53 years, read and studied the entire bible word for word for decades, and even wrote a verse by verse commentary. I say that for one reason. I have had multiple people come to me to tell me how bad Bethel is. I can only say that I started wacthing Bill Johnson’s surmans on youtube. I have yet to hear him say anything that is foundationally wrong. No one is perfect, but I will say that is the messages I have heard, have challened me and been on the money. My background is growing for years in a Calvary Chapel and later onto Assemblies of God.

          • Anonymous

            January 9, 2019

            I also agree with this comment Elle Johnson has greatly influenced my spiritual growth causing to flow out to others I have yet to hear him be wrong Doctrine Lee and above all his heart is good and has good fruit in his personal life he is humble transparent and very hungry for God which I commend

          • Pam Rodriguez

            January 14, 2019

            I totally agree with You! People are filled with soo much hate, that they cannot see the TRUTH about Bill Johnson, and other great men of Love and Truth! I was saved and attended Assembles of God, Church Of God, and None denominational Churches for years! And some were good places, but about 10 years ago I was handed a CD with Bill Johnson, AND I FELT SOO MUCH LOVE, AND GOD CHANGED MY LIFE! I would be at my old church feeling like “Lord I’m tired of being inspired, I want to be changed, and would find myself wanting to walk out and go to my car, and slip one of his CDs on! Ever since then, I have learned SOO much from Bill, and others, especially about “walking in Love!” BILL DOESN’T BOTHER CRITICIZING THE CHURCH BECAUSE HE DISAGREES! HE JUST LOVES, WITH A GENUINE LOVE! Jesus clearly stated that people would KNOW US BY OUR LOVE! NOT BY division, and criticism! There is SOO much I could share, BUT I KNOW THAT THE HOLY SPIRIT IS THE REVEALER OF TRUTH, NOT ME, especially to those that are NOT willing to listen, and wanting to criticize, and especially NOT WILLING TO LOVE! Love Ya Gene, and those that don’t understand also, IN JESUS NAME!

          • admin

            January 14, 2019

            To Pam
            Why is anybody disagreeing with Bill Johnson filled with hate ? Could it be that LOVE is the what pushes the admin of this site to warn ?
            Bill Johnson recommend to reject any criticism, which prevents is disciples to have access to other point of view.
            Love is important, but doesn’t save.
            How and what do you share to unsaved people ?
            I highly recommend you to watch “The American Gospel”.

        • Debra Bowcott

          February 15, 2019

          I think where Benny Hinn and Bill Johnson and others have got it wrong is that the person’s were alive when the mantels were passed to them I.e. Moses to Joshua Elijah to Elisha…can you find anywhere in scripture when/where a dead man gave his mantel to another?

          • Anonymous

            August 4, 2019


          • Brent Smith

            July 23, 2020

            ◄ 2 Kings 13:21 ►
            Once while some Israelites were burying a man, suddenly they saw a band of raiders; so they threw the man’s body into Elisha’s tomb. When the body touched Elisha’s bones, the man came to life and stood up on his feet.

          • Old Sarge

            August 11, 2020

            No one was seeking anything other than a hasty disposal of the body in 2 Kings 13:21. I saw a sermon showing that last miracle was fulfilling the promise of getting a double portion. Elijah had 14 miracles and at his death Elisha only had 27. This one made 28 fulfilling the promise and it is nothing that shall be repeated as it was Elisha’s and no one else had that promise.

            I was a cessationist for many years and things like this kept me from the Charismatic movement. Yes, if you want to pray at a grave and ask God for a portion of someone’s mantle fine. Romanian Christians under Communism often did this because there was no one to ordain them due to the persecution. They were not sucking anointing out of the grave, but rather asking for one of their own along the lines of the departed pastor.

            The excesses and errors of the modern movement is what keeps people from being saved and the cautious from exploring the gifts of the Spirit.

            There is no biblical basis for gold dust, “alien jewels”, gold teeth, spiritual rain and orbs in Scripture. Indeed, orbs are a part of occultism. If God replaced the teeth it would be reasonable that they would be originals better than what they had at birth, but not gold ones. Indeed, Jesus healed the blind, the lame, the dumb and raised the dead, but nothing is said about replacing teeth and I am sure many in that day had many dental issues.

            When you read the Book of Acts many times when it is said that the people were filled with the Holy Ghost they spoke the Word with boldness. They were in one accord and no one had a need. None of the emotional things we see today were ever mentioned. No one fell on the floor. That happened twice in all of Scripture and it was out of fear and awe. Nowhere in Acts does it say people who were saved, baptized in the Spirit and spoke in tongues did crazy things. No one convulsed or twitched for hours or as one lady is still shaking long after her revival. That is more consistent with people who have been involved in Kundalini spiritism or even Tourette’s syndrome than being filled with the Spirit. Indeed, people were like the demoniac and given a sound mind, not doing things that were not decent and in order as Paul said the services should be.

            Scripture speaks of laying hands on people. but not pushing or slapping or kicking them down. No waves of people fainting as Paul or anyone else waved their hands and Paul or the others did not release the Spirit. The Spirit fell while Peter was still giving his testimony and no one taught them how to speak in tongues. It just happened. The Spirit releases Himself. He needs no help or signal from any man. Someone tried to teach me tongues at a conference, but a gift is received, not taught. No hissing like snakes or doing belly flops across the platform. That is dramatic and emotional, but not a gift of the Spirit.

            Indeed, if tongues are for the unbeliever, it would make sense that they would only be exercised in the church when there is an unbeliever present. And since the first instance was languages the unbelievers understood it would be one the unbeliever present would understand in an effort to evangelize. Yes, prophecy will convict sinners, but a redneck Alabama boy speaking in Swahili would convict a person who spoke the language whereas numerous people speaking in an unknown tongue to him would make him think you are mad.

            I believe that when the Holy Spirit was sent His mission was the same until His influence is taken away at the Rapture. That means the gifts He brought in the beginning He still has sufficient supply of for the Church Age. That said, the Corinthians abused the gifts, the Anti-Christ will have lying gifts and the boys and girls in Matthew 7 had something that looked like the gifts of the Spirit, but they were obviously more like the powers of Pharaoh’s magicians because Christ did not know them.

            John said to try every spirit and Paul said people would be given over to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils so discernment in these last days is not hate, but seeking truth. Truth will call out heresy and extremism that will cause the enemies of God to blaspheme.

            One other thing, the prophets in the Word were never wrong unless they were false prophets. A true prophet was dead on 100% of the time or he was dead. I do not see anything different under grace. People still send money to men and women who have had prophecies that failed or teach obvious error. There is no learning curve. When God gave them a prophecy, it was clear and not some vague thing like Nostradamus. Indeed, do not despise prophecy, but do not fall for the fake. Indeed, not everyone was given a prophecy of being great and a worldwide ministry. Many prophets brought a message of coming judgment. Their message became comforting after the chastisement.

            The letter kills and the Spirit gives life, but the Spirit will never contradict the Word since He was very instrumental in writing it. Charismatics need a better hermeneutic as much is not based on good interpretation of a passage. What makes a great “evangelistic” message may be shot down by a good dose of study. Jesus went to Paradise. He was never beaten on by demons and He did not become the first born-again man. That is heresy of the highest order and speaking of another Jesus, not the one of the Bible. A teacher who believes that should not be followed or supported.

            The great cloud of witnesses are the ones in Hebrews Chapter 11, not our loved ones looking down. If we moved the chapter division that is not inspired it is easy to see that.

            We need to be careful and not willy-nilly with the Word. I was in great error for 42 years as a fighting, independent, fundamental Baptist. I do not seek to go to the other extreme. God is a God of balance and that is a hard thing to find these days.

            Bring the flames. I have been flamed by the best. I do not worry about the rest.

            May God open all of our eyes as we seek Him and the truth.

  2. admin author

    February 5, 2018

    Hi Anonymous,

    Please read the article again. You mention that “There are aspects of Bill’s Johnson’s response that can be affirmed and this article is not an honest evaluation”.

    We wrote this, for instance : “We can only appreciate the fact that Bill Johnson recognizes that man is sinful and needs repentance. That is good to hear.”

    Regarding the mantels, there is a difference between the Old and New Testament. The Holy Spirit is now for every christian. You don’t find anthing close to a mantel in the NT.

    Several verses are about how the Holy Spirit gives according to His choice. There is no “transfer” from one to the other.

    1 Corinth. 12 is a good basis. There is no “special anointing” or “special anointed”. All christians are anointed, part of the body and the head of the body is Jesus. The message is clear, no part is more important than another.

    With respect, allow me to find your message not very loving.

    Please do some reseach on internet. You will find that this article shares the view of a lot of christians.

    • Anonymous

      June 4, 2018

      You got butthurt. That’s all

    • R. Alan

      June 13, 2018

      You don’t find anthing close to a mantel in the NT…

      Actually you do. John the Baptist came in the power & spirit of Elijah (a positive example); a negative example could be Jezebel showing up in the church(es) in the Book of revelation.

      BTW, I cannot subscribe to ‘grave sucking’

      • Ben

        April 6, 2019

        It’s worth noting here that John the Baptist was the last of the OT prophets, and not under the New Covenant (he died before the crucifixion and pentecost took place – these are the foundational events of that new covenant).
        This is why Jesus said:

        “”Truly I say to you, among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist! Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” (Matthew 11:11).

        Even the least of the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than John, because he or she has the Holy Spirit indwelling them as a sign and seal of salvation under the covenant of the body and blood of Jesus Christ. John did not have this – he belongs to the OT, not the New.

        • Joshua Smith

          June 28, 2019

          I would ask you to consider this, that handkerchiefs that had been touched by Paul were sent out and healing happened as well as deliverance from evil spirits. This is an example of the endless creativity of the Lord. It was not Paul healing but the Holy Spirit. He has infinite creative ways to pass along anointing. I am not even arguing for grave sucking but I would caution with this, does one believe that Acts was an exhaustive list of what the Spirit can do or a list of examples of things the Spirit could do.

          • Anonymous

            August 4, 2019

            If we believe that when we pass away our Spirit goes to be with Jesus, then there is no Spirit in that grave to suck anointing from. God does allow anointing to pass through generations, but no where in scripture was someone “dead” able to pass anointing. The mantel was passed on to those when both persons were alive. There is no Spirit in a grave. It is either in Heaven or Hell.

        • Link

          March 10, 2020

          @Ben, please refer to Luke 1. John the Baptist was “filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb.”

          • Old Sarge

            August 11, 2020

            Before Pentecost.

  3. Anonymous

    February 6, 2018

    Yes you do affirm (in passing). My apologies for not being loving. I ask your forgiveness. I simply prefer Jesus’ heart over other Christian views. As helpful articles are posted here they should be fair. If the article is about the interview…keep it about the interview. This article used the interview as a springboard to other comments and material making the interview seem untrustworthy and that the interview itself should not receive its own assessment. If you wanted to talk about Bill Johnson in general just do that. Don’t make him seem insincere in the interview with his comments.

  4. admin author

    February 6, 2018

    Hi Anonymous,

    Apologies accepted and if I hurt you, I also apologize.

    If you feel I make Bill Johnson insincere, you are right. It is what I want to demonstrate. Comparing what he says and the known facts, shows a difference.

    Just to take one, grave sucking. You find in the article several points that are not in line with the denial.

    Ben Fitzgerald was a Bethel leader (and still very close to Bethel), when he explained why they try to get the anointing of dead people. On the video (link in the article), he is with Bethel students.

    We find the same kind of “double talk” with the recent “Christ Alignement” debate. For instance this article :
    Kris Vallotton says in his first post : “Christians are now using “Christian Tarots Cards” (apparently called “Destiny Cards”) ” and so on.
    How can he be not aware that these Destiny Cards are used at Bethel, according to Theresa Dedmond (pastoral staff at Bethel) in a book prefaced by Bill Johnson.

    I also have just added a new post (was already available in french, I hope the translation is not too bad) :

    • Brent Smith

      July 23, 2020

      Hey there.

      I do not advocate for grave sucking. Not even nearly. Not all your theological understanding is Biblical. If the anointing leaves the believers body when their spring leaves (in death) then why was the body of the man restored to life when it touches the bones of Elisha. ◄ 2 Kings 13:21 ►
      Once while some Israelites were burying a man, suddenly they saw a band of raiders; so they threw the man’s body into Elisha’s tomb. When the body touched Elisha’s bones, the man came to life and stood up on his feet.

      You cannot make blanket statements and accept that your personal insights alone are Biblical.

      There are things we cannot understand. Many muscles Jesus did that we do not know about.

      Just a thought.

  5. Anonymous

    February 9, 2018

    I think its healthy to have a hard look at the facts and it is line with what the bible teaches us, that even the elect would be deceived if it were possible. It’s sad that someone said what is wrong is that there is zero affirmation. Jesus wasn’t always affirming. To those who were misrepresenting the kingdom of God (the pharisees) he rebuked them and it was to sinners who did not know the truth he appeared with love. I have always been struck by that, and that it is not often preached now. There is this Jesus being preached who is only loving and never angry at injustice and at hypocrisy and at people misrepresenting the kingdom of God, but Jesus in the bible did all those things. Its a half gospel being preached. Thanks for writing this article. I just had my own reaction to realising you have to pay to watch bethel tv and that there is a price to pay to hear the gospel. It is in the new testament that ananias and sapphira were stuck down. This always affirming God being preached takes away a healthy fear of God, which the bible says is the beginning of wisdom. Looking for the truth in a situation does not make you lack affirmation, it makes you want to be in truth and that is a principle that is line with who Jesus is. We are warned to look for false prophets and that we would know them by their fruit. Also the comment saying you need the Holy Spirit to know true discernment is true and it sounds like you do. To start that comment with an insult begs to question if the author was writing in the spirit or the flesh though. I thought it was an interesting article and was very measured. Thanks.

  6. Carl

    March 6, 2018

    Dear author,
    I just want to say thank you for your peaceful and humble tone in the comments section. I found it graceful and inspiring.

  7. Adam Beck

    March 23, 2018

    I stumbled upon this site in my ongoing quest for facts. I appreciate many of the facts stated here. However the overwhelmingly biased tone in which these facts are shared, along with a nonchalant and routine vacillation between fact and opinion; which forces the reader to make the tedious and vague distinction between the two, diminishes the credibility of the author, in my opinion. It’s unfortunate because there is missed potential here; and because the one who resorts to inflammatory accusations, often sacrifices the credibility born naturally of kindness by so doing. As is the case here, I believe.

    There are many people I disagree with theologically, some I feel even lead people astray. And I do agree with much (not all) of what I read on this site.

    Yet to dedicate a “ministry” to attacking these people is poor form, unattractive, unproductive, and dangerous ground. We have been given the ministry of reconciliation, according to Scripture. Let God be the Judge then of another’s servants. Let us therefore preach Christ and Him crucified; not proclaim others crucified for Christ’s sake.

    – Adam Beck
    Nashville, TN

    (I do not check the email I provided and consequently will not be made aware of any further replies on this thread. And I’ll not visit this site again to either read or reply to any further comments.)

  8. admin author

    March 23, 2018


    Thanks for your message, but it would help if you would provide some examples.

    If facts are missing, let us know which ones you would like to see.

    Quotes are clearly highlighted.

    We have to let God judges the heart, but He asks us to examine teachings. There are multiple warnings in the NT regarding false prophets, teachers and so on.

    You seem to agree that some people leads other astray. The purpose of this site is to encourage people to read the Bible and stay on a solid ground.

    Don’t worry, we don’t use e-mail addresses, they are not even mandatory.

  9. Anonymous

    April 19, 2018

    Wow, I’m taken note of this site to not drift to it again

  10. Ann

    April 19, 2018

    we are to exspose deeds of darkness. call them out. Church read your Bible. Be not deceive . Many in the church are a sleep. Wake up church. We are living in the last days. The sings of the times are everywhere. The Bible says except there come a falling away than the end will come. Thank you for standing on the truth. Judgement must begin at the house of God. We are not to have fellowship with darkness. Read your Bible. Watch and Pray Jesus said.

  11. Mark Kennicott

    April 23, 2018

    Thank you for this article. Frankly, I think you were more generous with Johnson than his comments deserve. As a Pentecostal pastor, I am alarmed at the amount of nonsense that passes for Christian thinking these days. We need a revival of the Word of God in our midst, and a fear of God that causes us to once more tremble at His Word (Isa. 66:2). We need people who will fall in love with Jesus, and seek His face more than we seek His blessings. He is the prize!

  12. Matthew

    April 23, 2018

    Thank you for this article. It is well presented and thoughtfully written. Your responses to the various comments are also encouraging. Thank you again.

  13. Brik

    April 24, 2018

    This was an excellent, factual article that many need to read to be warned of the serious dangers and deceptions among charismatic Christians. Deceiving spirits and practices going on in Charismatic circles are counterfeit signs and wonders from grave sucking to holy laughter, holy barking, glitter falling from heaven, the angel Emma. The bible even warns that in the last days the elect might almost be deceived. This is connected to the same people who are part of the New Apostolic Reformation and the 7 mountains of C Peter Wagner in thinking they can create the kingdom of heaven on earth and take over the land, almost makes me think it will be connected to the antichrist and false prophets to come. Its basically sorcery and witchcraft, and not the spirit of God. The bible in nowhere indicates the world will become paradise on earth until after the tribulation when Jesus physically comes down to earth and rules with an iron rod. It also tells us that many will come in the last days who will be false prophets and teach falsehoods with signs and wonders. Interesting how some who are being deceived by this get very angry, vindictive, and hateful. I’ve personally known people who have reacted the same way. This is not the spirit of God leading them. Some demonic spirit gets really upset when people are told the truth. If it was God’s spirit they would react with self control, love, kindness and humility as the author of this article demonstrated in responding to the commenters.

    • Cheryl

      January 10, 2019

      I believe God wants heaven on earth and that’s why Jesus prayed your will be done on earth as it is in heaven and many other verses that agree. Why did Jesus say to go into all the world preaching, and healing, and casting out demons.? If all men were saved ,healed and Devils cast out wouldn’t it be like heaven? No wars, no sickness…no demonic oppression or possesion, no governments or ….stealing everyone’s money. Yes revelation will happen but that was not Gods plan but mankinds deception and choices.

    • angela erhard

      October 15, 2019

      Dear Brik and others reading these postings. I think what you said is the most truthful, accurate and most helpful posting so far that I have read… Thank you for being brave enough to disagree and telling the truth in love. I think it is important for folks to understand that God does not want additions to what he tells us in Scripture and does not want us to spin it… God’s Word is fine on it’s own and enough for us to live by. angela

  14. Jon Michael Loyy

    April 24, 2018

    Bill Johnson, is in my opinion one of the best teachers presently in the Kingdom of God. Yet, it is said that he doesn’t want to police people….which only perpetuates the false notion that the police somehow by enforcing standards (law) is not a good thing. I’ll admit that “enforce” is a tad bit strong. Keeping the flies out of the anointing oil…is our responsibilty. ”

    Because Bill is a loving, caring man of God, he doesn’t go around slapping people, tellng them to get it right wife and daughter in law….flipping whackjobs! They are a huge emnarrassment to the Kingdom of God. Ifee. sorry for Bill and his son. The “wakey wakey” expression for wakng up the angels is utterly ignorant and very stupid. No intelligence there.

  15. Eng Ong

    May 3, 2018

    Thank you for your article and careful research on Bethel. Gracious and balanced approach to the controversies at hands. The real problem with Bill Johnson and Bethel is not so much in their behaviours as bad as they are, but in their belief system. Things like grave sucking, mocking the Holy Spirt as a genie or redefining repentance as having one’s mind to have a perspective of God etc is the result of their irreverence to the absolute authority of the Word of God.

    They always can try to explain or explain away their actions after the fact where damage has already been done to their congregation and students. Imagine the kind of spirits the misguided students would attract to themselves by hugging to graves. And the dishonouring way their people would learn from Bill’s daughter regarding the Holy Spirit by calling the Almighty God a genie and sneaky. These and other more serious errors will occur repeatedly with more dangerous consequences if Bill and his leadership refuse to repent from their errors.

    Yes, Bethel Church does practise spiritual activities that are Unscriptural. But more seriously the problem lies in their lack of the fear of the Lord and lack of clear repentance from their errors. For example, calling the Holy Spirt sneaky is not a matter of ‘Ops sorry, we will never do it again. Trust me.’ It is a mockery spirit that is operating in their house and this spirit needs to be dealt with. For someone who claims to receive regular revelation from God, Bill does not seem to be able to discern demonic spirits operating right under his own roof. This is a very dangerous form of deception.

    As a pentecostal pastor myself who had seen seven years of revival in the Far East where the Spirit of God moved in great power, I find Bethel is dabbling on very dangerous ground spiritually.

    Thank you once again for your work.

  16. Mike B.

    May 4, 2018

    All very interesting. I have read a few of Bill Johnson’s works and have never found any of the flakiness that is being discussed here. I find the daughter-in-law’s comments about the Holy Spirit to be immature, perhaps, but it seemed to be more an expression of how she FEELS about her relationship with Him, NOT an expression that anyone should view the Spirit as a genie in a bottle to be commanded, an idea that is clearly incorrect and heretical.

    As for passing on a spiritual mantel, I have heard a bit of teaching about this, and as someone noted above, there is precedence with Elijah and Elisha, Moses and Joshua, and others. However, the idea that this “practice” is superseded in the New Testament by anointing all believers should be considered, too, and I wonder if there might be a balance somewhere. God Himself is the same, yesterday, today, and tomorrow, but His Covenant . . . ? Well, that has changed, has it not?

    As for the rest about grave-sucking–the term itself is repulsive to me. I would prefer to call upon the Lord to give me a “like anointing” if at all.

    Folks, I have seen fruit from this ministry of Bill Johnson. I had heard nothing of these controversies until a day or two ago, and I live 3000 miles from Be them, so I do not attend. In any case, as another brother says above, we should seek reconciliation. Pray for them that God will direct them. Pray also that God will show you likewise where your own doctrine is off. None of us does everything correctly. Is our heart deeply loving and seeking God? Then, Lord, in Your mercy, guide us into all truth!

  17. Tom K

    June 6, 2018

    Yes, there is incredible fruit from Bethel’s loving ministry in individuals, in the secular Redding community, around the world. I do believe repentance is a change of mind. As we are “transformed by the renewing of our mind” we gain the “mind of Christ”, and a change in our behavior follows. Repentance is not confession or a decision to stop a sinful behavior. It is making Jesus Lord rather than ourselves and behavioral change results by the power of the Spirit not our will power. And I think Jenn’s personal picture of the Holy Spirit is simply cute and harmless. Regardless of your theological offense, I doubt it’s offensive to Him whom is definitely playful and whom she adores.

    • admin author

      June 6, 2018

      It depends what we call fruits.
      For instance regarding the secular Redding community, have a look at this for instance :

      Redding ranks 3rd…, even if Bethel has been established there for decades.

      Look at the crime rate, the health level, and other indicators. Redding is far from Paradise.

      We can’t rely on their claims, not even from the city Council. One of the member is an elder of Bethel Church and they give large amount of money to the city (last year US$ 500’000 for the police dpt).

      • Anonymous

        June 6, 2018

        Strange answer. You, sir, are an odd fellow, pharisee.

        • admin

          June 7, 2018

          According to the Bible, pharisee were accused of :

          – twisting the scripture
          – putting burden on other (which were not even biblical)
          – hypocrisy

          They were requesting more from the other than what they would do themselves.

          Those who compared teaching vs scripture were called “noble Bereans”. (Acts 17:11).

          If examining facts instead of believing every claim makes you a pharisee, then I am one. But that’s not what the Bible says.

          I encourage you to examine more in depth the claims of Bethel and such (including gold dust/angel’s feather and so on).

          And of course examining their teaching vs the Bible is important.

          • Anonymous

            June 8, 2018

            The Pharisees operated in a religious spirit, letter of the law, puffed up, not recognizing a move of God’s Spirit. I would caution you to bewatchful of that in yourself in your self appointed guardianship of biblical truth.

  18. admin

    June 9, 2018

    Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 1 John 4:1

    We have to examine if the “move” is from God’s Spirit or not. This based on the Scriptures and facts.

    • Anonymous

      June 22, 2018
    • Shane

      July 20, 2018

      There is one glaring problem with every person who criticizes this ministry. There is no love in their judgements. The Bible tells us in 1 Corinthians 13: “1 If I speak in the tongues[a] of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,[b] but do not have love, I gain nothing.”

      I have literally gained nothing from the dissension caused by these “attacks”. I call them attacks because that is precisely what they are. “The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy, but I come that you may have life.” There is life being produced by the ministries at Bethel Church. So I ask, has life EVER been produced by this nay-saying? I will not answer that question, I only ask it so that the people reading this can begin thinking for themselves rather than having a critical and negative person who does not LOVE do the thinking for them. I make this suggestion to anyone who would like to raise more questions concerning any ministries actions/teachings. Read 1 Corinthians 13 in full, and ask the Lord to help you to discern the areas in YOUR life where you are not speaking or acting in love.

      As for the writers of articles such as this one, I pray that you are not judged by the same standard with which you are judging. In the words of JESUS: “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” John 13:35.

      This ministry has recorded 10’s of thousands of hours of service content so that the name of Jesus and his fame can be spread across the earth. I would dare a guess, that not all the nay-sayers combined have as much experience in public speaking nor do they have such a large public eye upon them. If they had, they would understand that even the messenger is human. But thats the beauty of God, He takes broken people and uses them for His glory! (ie. David, Saul/Paul, Peter, Rahab, Jacob, Abraham, Moses and just about every other Bible hero you could name)

      “3And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, 4They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. 5Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? 6This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. 7So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. 8And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. 9And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. 10When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? 11She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” John 8:3-11

      God bless you in your search for truth.
      p.s. Jesus is the way, the TRUTH and the life


      • BRIEN

        July 20, 2018

        The thing is, there is a great love for others to warn them about something that is potentially as dangerous and destructive as apostasy and false, deceptive doctrines and practices, its literally helping to save people from going down that path. When the bible says that in the last days there will be many deceiving spirits, fasle signs and wonders done in Jesus name, and that the elect might almost be deceived, as well as the fact that many lukewarm believers are being taken in by false deceptive doctrines, there is nothing unloving about trying to save people from that. I tried to warn a couple of different friends about this, by relating to them the unbiblical things going on at Bill Johnson’s church, and they all wrote me off and wouldn’t have anything to do with me after that. So whose the unloving one here. They could not deal with honest, respectful discussion of the facts? I’m open to learning in humility to see if I’m wrong or not, but these people shut down the discussion immediately when it was something they didn’t want to hear. The apostasy and falling away of believers is serious stuff and very sad to me, my heart goes out to those people that are being taken in by any false signs and wonders or deceptive, demonic practices. We are told to hate sin but love the sinner, and if our brother or sister stumbles onto the path of sin, we are to try to warn them and help them get back on the right path. In the same way, following after false doctrines or participating in things like grave sucking are sins if they don’t line up with the word of God, hence we are to try to warn and save our brothers and sisters from going down that path. Does that make sense? Does that make people unloving? Especially in light of the very obvious proof of what things are not lining up with the word of God. Jesus said to seek first the kingdom of God and its righteousness. To love the Lord our God with all of our heart mind and strength, and if you love me you will obey my commandments. The Word of God gives us the Lord’s various commandments, so if we no longer heed them or attempt to learn what they are then we are not loving God. It was disturbing to hear that at Bethel they no longer talk about sin but just want to affirm everyone as they are and give praise to people. There needs to be a balance of holding people accountable and helping them to examine their life and see where they need to get right with God, while giving encouragement and affirmation, but to only give praise and affirmation, something is wrong.

        • Anonymous

          July 20, 2018

          I only have a moment for a short response, so I will be brief. It sounds to me as though you are taking a bunch of little snippets and creating a doctrine out of it. This is exactly what has been done with the Bible for the last 30 years. You can make the Bible say whatever you want if you are willing to remove context and audience from it. I challenge you to listen to the full interview again, but this time don’t listen for statements to attack. Listen to the heart of the man making the statements. I think you may come to understand more fully the motive behind the thoughts.

          God Bless,

  19. Anonymous

    June 22, 2018

    Each of us, as followers of Christ, have to discern what is right and scriptural. Although I do believe in maybe receiving the anointing of others, but people that are alive, not dead people. The Word says to not have anything to do with the dead. To me that is getting strangely close to talking to the dead. I don’t feel comfortable with it, and so I won’t be doing it, or encouraging it, I don’t see it clear in scripture; and I love Bethel music, I do believe it is anointed, but this is not something I would condone unless I were to get some revelation from the Holy Spirit that would give me peace about it.

  20. larry stutes

    July 18, 2018

    If people would spend half of the time seeking Gods Holy Spirit for answers and emulating his characteristics rather than trying to judge, criticize and other wise speak on things they have no clue about, they would be much more acceptable to god and holy and anointed and doing what you were sent here for in the first place. Most of them just end up a tool of the devil and never realize it. Realize this, God is much greater than the bible and operates in it, over it and above it. He is sovereign, more loving, more generous, and more merciful and gracious, less tolerant of sin than you will ever know and not hindered by your ignorance, arrogance and level of life that needs serious help in most cases. What we see most of the times are kiddies trying to eat meat and choking to death on it and blaming everyone else for their ignorant ideas and their God who they have managed to put a box with a label on it that makes a mockery of us all. These types of people have heaps to learn about God and have earned the name Pharisee.

  21. TH

    July 25, 2018

    If God has already given us the Holy Spirit to live within us , why do we need to go to somebody grave to get a Anoiting? If they really want to grave suck, why don’t they go to Jesus grave? Why go to others? Doesn’t make sense to me at all

    • Anonymous

      October 20, 2018

      THIS. So much, this. Why would you go to anyone else’s grave than His for that purpose??

  22. Rodney Pidd

    August 5, 2018

    Firstly, I am delighted to see a website where it appears that the desire is the pursuit of the truth and the exposure of false teachers and false doctrines. This heart, if rightly directed, can only be for the good of the church.

    Regarding repentance:

    2 Timothy 2:19-21 New King James Version (NKJV)
    19 Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity.”

    20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. 21 Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.

    Therefore, not everyone in “a great house” is a vessel for honor, but only those who repent.

    Romans 8:13 New King James Version (NKJV)
    13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

    Repentance is only by the power of the Holy Spirit. We can not do it by ourselves. If you do not understand this then I suggest that you would ask the Holy Spirit what He means.

    Matthew 7:21-23 New King James Version (NKJV)
    I Never Knew You
    21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’

    Many people who confess Jesus Christ as their Lord and have even walked in His power will be cast into hell because they did not repent, but continued to practice lawlessness. Their will be many Jesus said. Many false pastors, many false teachers, many false evangelists, many false apostles and many false prophets. Many people who call themselves christians but are wise in their own opinions, rather than wise in-Christ will find themselves cast aside for eternity.

    2 Thessalonians 2 New King James Version (NKJV)
    The Great Apostasy
    2 Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, 2 not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. 3 Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

    5 Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? 6 And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. 7 For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. 8 And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. 9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

    Stand Fast
    13 But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, 14 to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 15 Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle.

    16 Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, 17 comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.

  23. John W Reed

    August 17, 2018

    religious tradition led folk get stuck on their traditions. Read the actual Scripture on New Covenant repentance. The word literally means to change your mind. That’s the word, metanoia. Read it in your strongs concordance. That’s the Greek word used all through the New Covenant. When you repent you change your mind about what your thinking, what your doing, or speaking that is what brings the change. His Grace flowing towards you causes the change of mind. I think your focusing on something that is not doctrine or something taught. Jenn just gave her personal understanding of how the Spirit works in her life. She wasn’t creating a doctrine. If you want to speak about strange doctrines, look at Michael Brown and the other Judaizers. The wish the Church to embrace Mosaic Law and Jewish customs and manners. They want the Church to observe Sabbath and celebrate the feasts. Paul clearly teaches against this as going backwards and embracing the shadow and ignoring the substance Jesus.

  24. Rodney Pidd

    August 18, 2018

    In response to John W. Reed:

    Yes John repentance is about changing your mind, but true repentance leads to transformation.

    “There were present at that season some who told Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And Jesus answered and said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.””
    ‭‭Luke‬ ‭13:1-5‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

    The repentance that Jesus Christ is referring to is to stop sinning. Yes change your mind about it and then stop doing it. So therefore Jesus is not just saying change your mind about sin, but he telling His listeners to stop sinning or perish.

  25. Anonymous

    September 5, 2018

    The church needs to apply the regulatory principal, basically unless something is explicitly taught in the bible it is implicitly forbidden. If you have a problem with that principal in worship or church direction it is because you want to operate in such a way that isn’t biblical. You would say to not put God in a box and I would say not to take Him out of the box He put Himself in… If you are going to favor one side or the other it is always safe to favor the side of the bible

  26. Don Banks

    September 15, 2018

    Ive been disturbed by what Im reading.
    There’s echoes of Roman teaching here. That the church (or a church) via the Pope, (or its leader), can , if not should, introduce new teachings via “revelations”.

    To more or less quote Oswald Chambers…..
    “Its not that God doesn’t speak today (petsonal revelation ), its just that He’s not saying anything different “.

  27. Josie

    January 29, 2019

    Thank you for your article. Wow. I am heart broken that this deception is in the body of Christ. The LORD’s heart must be so grieved by what is being taught at Bethel Church and others like it around the world. But, I know He is not surprised for He warned us of these doctrines of demons. If His children would read their Bibles and DISCERN between what is being taught and what The Bible says, then so many of us would not be deceived. And, I might add that we are to expose the fruits of darkness (Eph: 5: 6-11). Where is the reverential fear of God in this Church and others like it? God will not be mocked!
    God bless you all

  28. Jake

    February 6, 2019

    As someone who grew up going to Assembles of God church, as an adult my main concern with charismatic theology is the ease in which our own “feelings”, desires, ideas, etc etc can be taken as or interpreted as “hearing from God”. First off let me say I am not suggesting He does not speak to us and that the things mentioned above are always bad. I do however have concern when these areas are given a higher priority or place over scripture. These things must exist in balance and they must always be in check with who God says He is in scripture, not who we want him to be or feel he is. Much of these things are on the fringes, and Gods love for us and gift of salvation by faith alone in Christ is and must always be the most important thing. I don’t believe Bethel has this area wrong, and for that I am sure they have reached many people for Christ, as have many charismatic churches including the one I grew up in.

    I just personally have seen where emotions and feelings have led people to ride a roller coaster in their faith and walk and do and try all kinds of things that are intended to create the “good feelings” again. Emotions, experience, anointing, Hope, joy, peace, community, love, comfort, all of these things I believe exist in our lives as a result of following Christ, but if any of these things are pursued as “the thing” instead of simply pursuing Christ they are out of balance.

    I know I am not writing with the educated text as some, but my own personal check toward charasmata is that it so easily becomes out of balance toward experiential faith. There are many churches that are dry, but also many drunk on experiential.

    God give us the balance of knowing who you are both in knowledge and experience and may they be grounded in Your truth, and not our own.

    • scribalwell

      May 4, 2019

      ‘drunk on experiential’ – Exactly Jake! Your heart says it all. ‘Educated text’ can sometimes get in the way, and obscure, the simple truth. Blessing!

      • Anonymous

        March 5, 2020
  29. Seeker

    March 4, 2019

    This thread of discussion reads like a microcosm of church history and division over the past 100 years. It is energizing to see the passion and fervor of so many believers whom God will bless and anoint despite their less than perfect ideas and theology. I pray for the grace of God, and His mercy to overflow in each of our lives and hearts as we serve others with sacrifice, humility, and devotion. Oh, that we can someday in His Kingdom esteem each other more highly than ourselves!

  30. Anonymous

    June 22, 2019

    I’ve tried so hard to warn people about this church without offending them, including a friend of mine who volunteers there.. I thought I was doing it out of love, but maybe I wasn’t. All I know is that the teachings are dangerous and the church is influential. This gives us a reason to warn people, but to do it with love seems to be the hard part. I think much of the “I can’t believe Bethel believes this stuff” tone has something to do with it. I’m going to work on my tone and choice of words for the next time that I talk about this with someone that I care about.

    • Duane

      September 2, 2019

      I’ve been trying to find out more about Bill Johnson’s teachings concerning all the above. Confirmation that he is teaching these things.

      This is what I know the Bible teaches.
      All reborn believers receive the Holy Spirit/anointing
      We fan the flame by the laying on of hands by the elders
      There’s the filling of the Holy Spirit
      There is no passing on of an anointing because the gospel is Col 1:27
      Someone could continue in a ministry but in his own anointing from the Holy Spirit.
      Whichever state we are in, we all have to Repent… Accept Jesus as our Lord and Saviour…. Only then can we repent of our habitual/casual sins etc as we renew our minds according to the Word by Grace (Jesus) through faith. Change is a work of God, He makes the seed grow….
      We cannot do it in our own strength so it is important to understand the process or the different forms of repentance, because just renewing your mind according to the Word can still be done in your own strength without Jesus Christ. Then it’s religion… A works based transaction….
      We are saved FOR good works not because or by them.
      Good without God is in itself a dead work of the flesh because even the unsaved know how to give good things…
      Anyway, I love Bill Johnson in the Lord dispite differences….
      As the “father/Shephard” of his church he should create better boundries to reduce misunderstanding.
      Paul said “we put the truth plainly’
      So although the concept of the Holy Spirit by his daughter may seem innocent and a bad choice of words, it does send a bad message or the wrong message.
      I prayerfully encourage ” the fear of the Lord” in all we teach and do
      All my love in Jesus Christ

  31. John

    March 10, 2020

    Thank you for writing this article brother. You are just doing what the Bible says in the following verses:
    For what have I to do with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside?
    I Corinthians 5:12 NKJV
    And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.
    Ephesians 5:11
    We live in a era where people who have refused to examine the scriptures as the Christians in Berea. Many Christians are bewiched like the Galatians.
    Many ministers use occult practices like those you mentioned in your article- that of invoking the spirits of the dead in a covered form of christianity yet scripture demonstrates that the spirit of the dead goes back to the Creator. When you go to grave, you will get a spirit of deception. That’s why they start seeing the Holy Spirit as a snake.
    Pure deception.

    Those who are sinning rebuke in the presence of all, that the rest also may fear.I Timothy 5:20 NKJV

    This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith,
    Titus 1:13 NKJV

    Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.
    II Timothy 4:2 NKJV
    This is what you are doing.
    God bless you

  32. Susan

    March 12, 2020

    Addressing the comment by Jen Johnson about Holy Spirit and the word ‘sneaky’ – “The word sneak has many shades of meaning, but all involve doing something in a secretive or stealthy way. If you sneak home after midnight, that means you’re quietly creeping into the house so no one will hear you.

    In addition to moving furtively, sneak can also mean doing something secretly or slipping something in. You might sneak a cookie when no one is looking, or you might sneak your brother into a concert. You could even sneak a glance at that cute guy in your math class — you do it when you think no one will notice. Sneak has a noun form that describes a furtive person — someone who does a lot of sneaking.”  

    This means that the word can have a positive meaning and not only the negative one that is more prevalent.

    The Bible actually instructs us to be sneaky at times – “But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing,”   Matthew 6:3 NKJV  

    “Moreover, when you fast, do not be like the hypocrites, with a sad countenance. For they disfigure their faces that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.”   Matthew 6:16-18 NKJV 

    As I become more intimately acquainted with Holy Spirit along with the other entities of the Triune Godhead, I’ve found Him to be enthusiastic (like Aladdin’s Genie) about helping us (Isaiah 41:8-14) although I don’t see Him as blue. But then blue in Biblical colours is associated with Holy Spirit, living water and divine revelation (L Rozkowski – Biblical Significance of Color & Color Combinations – so that may be how He reveals Himself to Jen Johnson, perhaps from childhood.

    All the members of the Godhead reveal Themselves differently to each person to create a heart connection without degrading the majesty and awe that is Theirs. It’s interesting that to Jen Johnson Holy Spirit has revealed Himself in that way to her. But then He always likes a good joke, praise Him!!!

  33. Nancy Markon

    May 28, 2020

    On the repentance issues raised . . .

    In the NT, “repent” is translated from the word “metanoeo” [Strong’s Greek 3340] which is defined as “to change one’s mind, repent, [rethink]” and “to change one’s mind for better, to heartily amend with abhorrence of one’s past sins”.

    This article quotes Bill Johnson as saying, “The focus of repentance is to change our way of thinking until the presence of His Kingdom fills our consciousness.” The phrases “change our way of thinking” and “His Kingdom fills our consciousness” suggest to me a calling to see as God sees, an invitation to align with His Kingdom perspective. Wouldn’t that include discerning as “sin” any attitudes, thoughts, or behaviors which God Himself calls “sin”?

    Bill Johnson is also quoted as saying, “Renewing the mind begins with repentance. . . . To many Christians, repentance refers to having an altar call where people come forward and weep at the altar and get right with God. That is a legitimate expression of repentance, but it’s not what the word repentance means. “Re” means to go back. “Pent” is the penthouse, the top floor of a building. Repent, then, means to go back to God’s perspective on reality. And in that perspective there is a renewal, a reformation that affects our intellect, our emotions, and every part of our lives.”

    re- “a prefix, occurring originally in loanwords [adopted words] from Latin, used with the meaning “again” or “again and again” to indicate repetition, or with the meaning “back” or “backward” to indicate withdrawal or backward motion:
    regenerate; refurbish; retype; retrace; revert, [repent].

    Bill Johnson’s definition of “re” is supported by Doesn’t repentance suggest an element of “withdrawal” or “backward motion”? A person may have once seen theft as an acceptable solution for meeting a need then later change his mind, realizing that it is not only a selfish and unloving act, but it also dishonors both God and the thief who is a human being made in God’s image. For me, that’s a U-turn in thinking, a withdrawal of a former point of view and its replacement with a new and better one. Repentance.

    The “penthouse” statement strikes me as a metaphor used in the exercise of poetic license. Scripture references God as “the Most High”. A penthouse is typically the “highest” or “most high” dwelling place in a building. Repentance is returning to the penthouse. Any “return to” or “reflection of” the views of the Most High God is thinking on the highest order, that of the mind of Christ which is in full alignment with God’s righteousness.

    Sorry, but I don’t see anything here which supports the position that Bill Johnson’s views on repentance are unbiblical.

  34. Concerned

    June 25, 2020

    Does anyone know that the greek word repentance is metanoia which is the combination of “meta” = change and “noia” = mind? It is a change of mind. It has nothing to do with penthouses or the top floors of buildings

  35. Susan

    July 23, 2020

    I believe the Holy Spirit and the Word of God agree, as the scripture says. They are both in perfect balance. If you have an experience with the Holy Spirit or feel led to do something or someone says something you’ve never heard of before, we are always to check it out with scripture. And make sure you are interpreting the scripture properly. Let the Bible interpret the Bible.
    When anything anyone says, especially a minister of the Gospel, creates a “red flag” inside of you, you need to investigate it. I’ve heard some ministers say things that weren’t right. But the things I disagreed with did not really matter or were not big things that would cause me to stop listening to them. On the other hand, when I hear of strange practices, some even similar to witchcraft, I am on the alert. I have a genuine hate for the demonic and the church delving into those practices that would lead people astray.
    We have to be VERY careful in this area. I don’t want to find that a demon has been trying to teach me something weird through a minister!!!
    Stay humble
    Stay teachable (by the Holy Spirit)
    Stay in the Word of God
    Stay in prayer

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