Thursday, March 4, 2010

My ears still bleed when I hear the dogwhistles...

You know, I've been struggling with the idea of explaining the New Apostolic Reformation---the particular brand of neocharismatic/dominionist theology I was involved with in the years directly preceding my departure from God altogether---not knowing where to begin, where to end. I'd been wavering between the need to explain the crazy, and the fear that I wouldn't be able to do so very well.

Well, guess what? I don't have to. It's been done already, and done exceptionally well:

Prayer Warriors and Palin Organizing Spiritual Warfare to Take Over America

Lest you think the title sounds a bit over the really isn't. This article sums up pretty much everything I've wanted to explain about the NAR: the ubiquity, the subtlety, the militaristic structure, the aim to infiltrate and manipulate society from within as "rulers"...and the way it disguises itself in more innocuous forms to garner support from more moderate Christians (and even non-Christians).

It sums up perfectly why the thought of Sarah Palin in any position of power freaks me right the hell out (well, y'know, besides the standard "she's an empty-headed twit" thing). The leaders of the New Apostolic Reformation are not interested in democracy. They view themselves as spiritual royalty, and believe they have a mandate from God to rule. I've heard this preached from the pulpit, taught in conferences. I trust this article because, well, none of it sounds weird or over the top to me. It was my normal for so long, and I guess that hasn't fully gone away. Maybe it never will.

If you don't have time to read the whole thing, here's an excerpt:

BB: Why should the American people be concerned about the New Apostolic Reformation?

RT: I believe this movement's threat to separation of church and state is greater than some of the more overtly theocratic movements of the religious right. The inclusion of women and all races in leadership roles, and their enthusiastic sponsorship of social services conflicts with a popular notion about religious fundamentalism. Despite their radical strategies, leaders in the movement have been labeled in the press as moderate, including Apostle Samuel Rodriguez -- president of the Sacramento, Calif.-based National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference -- who has been described as a "new evangelical."

Unsuspecting people are certainly becoming involved in New Apostolic activities without understanding its agenda. For example, the Global Day of Prayer sounds benign but was founded by Graham Power, head of the Africa division of Silvoso's International Transformation Network. Numerous citywide prayer efforts and pastors' networks are under the auspices of Wagner's apostles. Charities, social services, and "reconciliation" events appear to welcome all, but are designed as stealth evangelism to advance the "Kingdom."

In June, Lance Wallnau, an ICA apostle and motivational speaker for the Seven Mountain campaign, spoke on stealth evangelism at Wasilla Assembly of God. In Guatemalan jails, according to Wallnau, New Apostolics teach prisoners a secularized version of "Kingdom" worldview for a full year before making any attempt to convert them to "born-again" Christianity. Wallnau encouraged the congregation to follow this example for infiltrating the seven spheres of society.

(Emphasis mine, etc, etc...)


atimetorend said...

Very scary stuff. I was in a charismatic Reformed (calvinist) movement of churches that didn't delve into the dominionism thing or the shepherding "accountability" thing so much. But at the same time that stuff always was floating around the edges of the church.

I only hope that since the witches and demons they are praying against are not real their strategies will fail. But it still scare the living day lights out of me. I won't read Sharlet's The Family, for that reason right now...

Ahab said...

I first learned about NAR through the ridiculous antic of Lou Engle and TheCall, and I was shocked when I learned that the movement was so much larger.

Talk to Action is a good blog to visit, as they keep a close eye on NAR developments.

Bonnie Bee said...

I see you haven't written in awhile and I've just found you. I'll read some of your older posts when I get a chance. Just want to say that we need people like you telling the truth. I am a spiritual director and I see some messed up folks. Hope you are well.