As humans we are programmed to respond to pain. In most cases we simply avoid it. In others we fight what hurts us. Some just learn to not respond to pain and live desensitized. In my first few years post WOF, as you will read on my “About” page, I simply suppressed the feelings I had towards those I knew had let me down. As time progressed, I met many wounded soldiers. These Christians had also been damaged by the false teachings and actions of those in WOF groups. Had the damages come from coworkers or bosses in the workforce, we would have forgotten them as time passed. We were let down by those who promoted themselves as God’s generals. The simple fact that when a man or woman attached the God factor to their life or ministry or calling, changed how we viewed them. In a sense they were placed on a pedestal. Also in a sense we idolized them. I remember when I was in the WOF we accumulated books, audio, and video of a mass of preachers. Had trading cards been available, we would have collected them and rehearsed their stats. Old ministers such as Charles Parham, the infamous Smith Wigglesworth, and the like. Their lives dissected and their claimed miracles remembered.
The fact of the matter is that we as humans are drawn to other humans. We as Christians should idolize only Jesus Christ. He is the only savior. The only answer. The only choice of God. He is the golden child, not you or me or some fancy pompous preacher or athlete.
So idolatry was a fault of mine. Bitterness would also be. Because I placed faith in man and was let down, I chose bitterness. I felt like it was my right. Indeed my mentors let me down. They chose money over truth. A gospel of greed and pride over a gospel of humility. I officially left the WOF in Dec. 2000. I kept in contact with several WOF friends until 2003 or 2004 we were continually hashing and rehashing the doctrines. I started a side business in 2001 which took up most of my time for the next several years. I had all but forgotten my old WOF friends however refused to affiliate with them because of their beliefs. In 2009 I would be confronted with some false doctrines about money and in my research I began to meet many new friends that had also come out of the WOF. I revamped an old website I had created warning about the dangerous Word of Faith gospel. I decided at this time that I wanted to delve into the doctrines rather than the preachers. The Word of Faith and similar teachers are controlled by the Puppet Master. He leads them to teach their doctrine with 3 lusts in mind. These are the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. These were the same lusts Satan tempted eve with in the garden.Gen 3:6 King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
Once again in 1 John 2:16 King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
So in essence, the Word-of-Faith appeals to the lusts of man.
- Lust of the flesh- How I can feel good. Food, drink, creature comforts, total health
King James Version (KJV)
18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.
19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.
20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?
- Lust of the eyes- How I can amass things. Money, possessions such as cars, lands, livestock, trophy wife or consecutive wives, Luke 12:15
And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.
- Pride of life- Special revelation knowledge. Also self-importance based on that knowledge or a gifting or financial status. Romans 12:3
For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
King James Version (KJV)
3 And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool:
4 Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts?
5 Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?
It was because of these things that deceived me that I had left the WOF. It was just in the last few years that I was, once again, defending my position against the WOF. Old WOF friends surfaced with questions and challenges about their beliefs. I left the website up but became weary of being bitter and just simply did not care anymore. I had made my opinion known and backed it up with ample scripture. Several refuse to walk away from WOF. Some are in too deep. They have family, wives, in-laws, etc they are obviously intertwined with, preventing or at least making it more costly to escape.
It was only a year ago that I would be challenged to truly forgive. Forgive myself for being deceived. Forgive those who were and are deceived. To come to the realization that there are no “men of God” amongst the Christians. Those who wronged me are mere men subject to flaws just like myself or any person. We who are believers and born again are all equal and all under Christ’s covering. The playing field positionally, is level.
I cant express how great it actually feels to know in my heart I have truly forgiven.