Posted by: Damon Whitsell | December 11, 2009

Yodas Prodigy’s Ex-Word of Faith Testimony

Yodas Prodigy’s Ex-WoF Testimony from http://www.light-after-darkness.org/forums/entry.php?17-My-Testimony

I became a fully surrendered Christian to God in 1984. Before that time I had given my life to Christ but was not obedient due to various reasons. My home church was a Southern Baptist Church. None of my family was religious during my growing up years and neither were any of my friends.

Once I surrendered to Christ with the help of an Assemblies of God attendee, I followed my parents to Faith Center, a Word of Faith Church. My parents had gone there for a little while. I was about 25 at the time.

I had a message from God telling me that my wife would be Judy. The message came to me while I was away for training for eighteen weeks. It came in a dream. I knew when I got home that we would go out for a date. Around Christmas God told Judy that I was the one for her. We both had seen each other once before. But we had never spoken.

We dated starting January 1st twenty-two years ago. Then, we got engaged seven weeks later. And finally married on October 18th.
I seemingly fit in to Faith Center right away. I had a testimony of what God had done for me. He delivered me of some sin habits that I developed during my adolescent years. He helped me to understand who I am in Christ and completed the reconciliation that started in my life at about eighteen years of age.

I got involved in many ministries including: Children’s, Choir, Evangelism Explosion, and Deliverance. My eventual ministry, which I believe God wired me for, is apologetics. I started going to “Nationally known Kevin Johnson of Mount Carmel Outreach” apologetics class.

During the first few years of involvement at Faith Center and Mount Carmel Outreach, I had heard that there were people who left Faith Center and bad mouthed it. Well, the usual comment was that they had a bitter spirit or lacked faith. Being one of the “Spiritual” leaders of Faith Center, I bought in to those reasons.

While studying the scriptures, I found some problems with the Word Faith movement. It seemed that they left some important things out of their formulas. First God’s will isn’t necessarily our will. Our idea of good for us isn’t necessarily God’s idea of good for us.

Finally, God is sovereign not man. The rampant personalization and out-of-context use of scripture was more like incantations of people hoping to somehow hit the spiritual lottery.

The first great error that I encountered was the JDS (Jesus Died Spiritually) doctrine which sent up a huge flag. I found that many Word Faith Teachers/Preachers taught that Jesus did not pay for our sins on the cross. It was actually done in Hell. Then he had to be Born Again (BAJ).

The second problem I ran in to was that the teachers/preachers also taught that you are a little god. More flags went up.

I mentioned these items to someone who had called my home. Her husband went to the pastor and said that I was trying to be a schismatic and cause trouble. He also said that I was sending a petition around to get Word Faith books out of our store. At this point, I had not considered these things. I eventually asked the pastor to remove them. Of course, that did not happen. A side note, that man was later to be found addicted to cocaine during this time frame. He recently died a painful death.

There was much travail in my home and spiritual life. My wife and I left the church. We came back for a short time. But, that was it. A woman even told my wife that she had every right to leave me.

I began to study and learn all that I could on the Word Faith Movement. Most of the books were short with some good points. But they were not giving me the full value that I needed.

Some of those books were:

The Born-Again Jesus of the Faith Movement, Judith Matta
JDS: The Jesus Died Spiritually Heresy, Hobart Freeman
The Health and Wealth Gospel, Bruce Barron

I finally found a book by D.R. McConnell called, A Different Gospel. This book hit it all on the head. The historical roots of the Word Faith movement were the metaphysical mind science cults. And probably two years later, Christianity in Crisis was released. This was another solid book documenting what these guys were actually saying. One last book that I read recently was “The Word Faith Controversy” by Robert Bowman.

In a nutshell, if there were no “Little gods” doctrine or BAJ/JDS, I would have stayed at Faith Center much longer.

Recently, the last two plus years, I have gotten back in to apologetics. There was a two-fold reason. First, I had a Mormon come to my door and though I knew what to say, I was rusty. Second, my son attended an Assembly of God School which is loaded with Word Faith adherents.

Well, a year later, I got to defend the faith again with some visiting Mormons. And, my son had some questions about what some of his friends believed. I was able to clearly explain the Orthodox Christian perspective and show the error of the WoF system.

While spending time at a Christian Forum, I met Tallen who is solidly a Reformed- believer and is a strong proponent of the Confessions. He has had a profound impact on my understanding of Reformed Theology. I had a general understanding of the Confessions. I adhered to the London Confession mostly due to my SBC background. Since, I have taken time to research and write about, “The Three Forms of Unity”. And have begun to use the WCF as a resource when discussing doctrine with those of the cultic or heterodox persuasion.

I love systematic theology. I have A.A. and Charles Hodge, Berkhof, and Thiessen as resources. My library does include The Christian Institutes. I am a BIG R.C. SPROUL fan. I must have 7 or 8 of his books

I do have a sticking point in my theology. I am firmly covenantal in my eschatology. I lean towards Partial-Preterism. In some respects, I’m a tweener. I’m between many views not knowing which to hold to. So, in this area, have patience with me.

Shalom,

YP

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