The Covert Strategies of the False Revival (3)
"Are Churches using a form of Brainwashing
to alter the minds of Believers?"
TACTIC 4 - Make the person re-evaluate the most central aspects of his or her experience of self and prior conduct in negative ways. Efforts are designed to destabilize and undermine the subject's basic consciousness, reality awareness, world view, emotional control and defense mechanisms.The subject is guided to reinterpret his or her life's history and adopt a new version of causality.
There could hardly be a better description of the "new paradigm"! The old ways are now 'negative' and must be superseded by the "new thing" of the apostolic reformation!
In part one I showed how an entirely new understanding of biblical doctrine has developed. Scriptures relating to salvation, the Church, the endtimes - and much more - are now being reinterpreted. This would be bad enough if believers were presented with a straight choice. But thousands who formerly accepted the classic views of scripture are now undergoing a strange and inexplicable change of mind, without any rational process of thought. They are experiencing a conversion process that secular observers know as brainwashing, in which the former beliefs are washed out of the subject's mind and counter-beliefs replace them.
And the new beliefs are about dominion and rulership!:
"I have had something exploding inside me on this subject for several days now since hearing Dr. Bill Hamon share Tuesday night (Oct, 19th,'99) at a conference called the International Gathering of Apostles and Prophets, about what he saw on the horizon. Let me tell you what he said, and then what I see as some of the implications. .... He began by proposing that we are in the throws [sic] of not just "renewal"; not just "revival"; not just a "new awakening"; but a "third apostolic reformation". ...We are being positioned to lay new foundations for a new era all together, foundations for the dawning of a new kingdom age. WE ARE IN THE THROW’S [sic] OF THE BIRTHING OF A WHOLE NEW ORDER - A WHOLE NEW DISPENSATION!... We are preparing to move into the age of Kingdom rule and dominion where Christ Himself, and we His saints, with Him, will rule and reign IN THE EARTH. [Capitals in original]
"The implications of this are staggering. It means a major paradigm shift. A change again in the religious structure, changes in how we relate to God, changes in the social and economic arenas, changes of nations and the political climate, changes in virtually every area of significance, just as radically as when He came the first time. ..We are about to move from the dispensation of grace to the dispensation of dominion. ...We are also about to enter into, not an age of yielding and passive surrender to our enemies, such as "turn the other cheek", and "go the second mile"; but rather, into a position of authority, dominion and power." The Third Apostolic Reformation, Jim Wies [http://www.cornerstonemin.org]
There is a drive to develop "new mind-sets" that no longer operate in the old "traditional" ways. As Tactic 4 of cult methodology states, the old beliefs need to come under attack and be portrayed as no longer fitting or acceptable. The new beliefs needs to be presented with power, authority and "anointing" as being the ONLY sensible option:
"We are entering one of the most awesome periods of change this world has ever seen. As this change seeps in, accelerates and impacts the nature and order of life as we have known it, we need...to recognize that within the context of this change, that the Lord is creating new paradigms. New patterns, new models from which the world's systems will be operating in the days ahead.
"In Luke 12:54-56 Jesus spelled out the need we have to be set free from traditional and religious mind-sets; and to begin genuinely understanding the times... [this] will require new mind-sets ... We are transitioning from a time of battles and skirmishes - into a time of war. ...The army of the Lord is about to move out on the offensive.A great mobilization is underway. ... It is a time to reexamine our methods. It will be a time of new wineskins....It is not a time to blithely assume that what has worked in the past will work in the future....Allmighty God, deliver us within the Body from the ruts and mind-sets that are formed by tradition." [Morris Ruddick: http://www.ruddickintl.com]
These new doctrines - being contrary to scripture - CANNOT be taught by the Holy Spirit, who opposes them! The ONLY way in which the counter-beliefs of the new-paradigm system can be implanted in thousands of unsuspecting Christians, is by using methods of brainwashing, coercion and mind-control!
Since brainwashing began as a method of indoctrination in the Communist system, it is often thought of in terms of crude and obvious physical force. However, things have changed! The authorities quickly realised that an even more effective method of changing the opinions and beliefs of whole nations was at their command - psychological coercion! This would escape the notice of the legal system and even become an acceptable part of society, adopted not only by politicians but the media and the Church. And it works!
One document observes:
"These tactics of psychological force are applied to such a severe degree that the individual's capacity to make informed or free choices becomes inhibited. The victims become unable to make the normal, wise or balanced decisions which they most likely or normally would have made, had they not been unknowingly manipulated by these coordinated technical processes. The cumulative effect of these processes can be an even more effective form of undue influence than pain, torture, drugs or the use of physical force and physical and legal threats."
Christian Change Agents?
Would Christian leaders stoop to such methods? Surely not, you cry! Surely their goals for church-planting, renewal, evangelism discipleship and reaching the "unchurched" are all biblical ideals implemented by the power of the Holy Spirit?
Well, I suggest you take a look at the "resources" on offer at a website [http://www.churchsmart.com/compucoach/contacts/00003.htm] that is normally only available to accredited members of CompuCoach - this URL however was viewable last time I looked. It will probably disappear soon after this article hits the website! (The best way to preserve it is not to be too free with this information - a word to the wise!!)
The website, owned and hosted by Robert E. Logan says that it "empowers Christian leaders to be more effective in ministry by gathering, organizing and making available information on leadership, church growth and church planting. Referencing over 200 books, CompuCoach offers checklists, worksheets, and coaching pages for evaluation and action planning."
Offered in the section titled "Resources for implementing change" are:
- Havelock, Ronald. "The Change Agent's Guide to Innovation In Education"
- Block, Peter. "Flawless Consulting",pp 113-139. How to understand and deal with resistance.
- Murren, Doug. "Leadershift", pp 85-192. Identifies issues to consider in implementing change via a paradigm shiftin church vision
One book picked at random from the section on change agents lists the contents thus:
"The Change Agent" by Lyle E Schaller:: Looks at the process of bringing about change in an organization - what it is, how to approach it, who does it, what prevents it and what makes it possible.
1. How to Cut Your Own Throat
2. The Nature of Change
3. The Process of Planned Change
4. Questions for the Change Agent
5. The Use of Power and Social Change
6. Anticipating and Managing Conflict
7. Organizational Change
Robert E Logan and Steven L. Ogne, the co-workers at this site are the authors of "The Church Planter's Toolkit" which can be seen at this website
When you see the kind of literature on offer, you start to ask yourself: why would church leaders need to educate themselves in handling resistance, forcing change and introducing paradigm shifts - well, for the same reason that they attend seminars to learn motivational speaking and crowd control. This is no longer preaching, but psychological technique!
Losing Your Assurance
TACTIC 5 - Create a sense of powerlessness by subjecting the person to intense and frequent actions and situations which undermine the person's confidence in himself and his judgment.
This is a subtle one! Believers generally do not realise when their confidence in what they believe, and their assurance, is being eaten away. Christians are the easiest of people to convince that that they have been wrong or sinful and that they need to change their ways. Christians want to please the Lord, do the right thing, be holy and correct, and fit in with what the elders consider to be good and acceptable behaviour. They are wide open to the cruel trickery of false accusation and condemnation!
A Christian may come to the church or meeting confident that he is saved, filled with the Spirit, reasonably clean-living and with no major hang-ups. Once there, he meets with hundreds or possibly thousands of people (all similar to himself) who tell him by their words and actions that he is "missing God" and "resisting the Spirit" if he does not adopt the new ways, the altered paradigm.
Hundreds of people are howling with what seems like pain, doubled up on the floor in a birthing squat or running around the room shouting, and the leader confidently announces that these are "special" ones who have received a ministry of intercession. They know things that the ordinary Joe cannot understand!
Joe comes to the conclusion, therefore, that he has gone wrong somewhere in his former Christian life and (possibly because of sin) has never experienced the joys of real intimacy with God.
Frequently, from the platform, anyone who has not received the new anointing is told he is not qualified to enter into the inner courts where the true glory is known. There are certain "levels" that need to be reached before truly powerful Christian life can begin! Anyone who has not known the "love" of the intimate embrace of Jesus cannot hope to be part of this glorious new revolution!
"Prophet" Kim Clement tells poor Joe that he's been wrong to develop a personal faith in the Lord, outside of what the leadership is doing - because only the leaders have the anointing to lead him to glory! "You can only go to the level that your leader gets to. You can only prosper to the degree that he prospers because he sets the standard and the pace by what you allow him to achieve. People want to keep God in a box, and keep Him without breath and without sound so that they’ll think what they’re doing is great - until somebody goes to the mountain and comes back with something greater." [Kim Clement, Detroit, Jan 99]
Soon Joe loses confidence in his "normal" Christian experience and thinks he is lacking in every department. What was a "great" Christian experience to him before, is nothing in comparison to the "mountain" that his leaders are climbing for his benefit.
He is told that his "god" has been in a box, confined to biblical statements and normal church teaching. But that is not enough!
Everything he's known up to this point had been superseded, and he can no longer trust to the old ways of living. He has to submit to receive a new anointing that will bring him up to scratch - and what if he resists this new anointing? Why then he is frequently told that he's a blasphemer, one who questions the Spirit, one who rebels against God-given authority, one who is on the brink of being cast into the outer darkness. He is unworthy!
And worse - if he rejects this, he will "miss out on the greatest move of God on this planet, ever!" He might even be responsible for delaying or halting the Return of Christ!
Is Joe Now a Sinner?
When doubts and fears come into his mind, Joe concludes (or is told) that it's a manifestation of his inward sin! These doubts, this resistance, is all part of his rebellious nature; he is clinging to "religion" and should have the courage to abandon his former experiences and teachings. "everybody else" is doing so - how can they all be wrong?
Joe thought he knew how to pray and hear God's voice until he came here - now he sees that his impoverished prayer-life is a joke, and nothing he has known up to this point matches up to the power of personal prophecies and visions he's hearing in the revival meetings.
Joe thought he knew God and had experienced the gifts of the Spirit. But now he sees that he was wrong in that area as well. He looks around at trembling and paralysed bodies; he listens to testimonies of thousands of conversions, miraculous healings; he sees angels, blue clouds of glory, power surges in the electrical systems, glittering gold dust descending, lightning strikes that split the lectern in two - and anything he formerly thought was the anointing of the Spirit now seems like make-believe. He needs "more, more" if he's to become a 'proper' Spirit-filled Christian!
Thus Joe becomes confused and bewildered, concerned that he's been on the wrong path up to now, convicted that his lingering doubts are offensive to God; swayed by the intensity of the new thing and unable to trust his own judgement any more. So he accepts the new paradigm.
Playing on the Emotions
TACTIC 6 - Create strong aversive emotional arousals in the subject by use of nonphysical punishments such as intense humiliation, loss of privilege, social isolation, social status changes, intense guilt, anxiety, manipulation and other techniques.
This tactic is allied to the previous one. It is based on the knowledge that we all seek to "belong". From an early age we seek to please our parents and those around us because to do so wins approval. We sense that love and approval are closely allied; therefore doing those things that bring acceptance and approval within society are those things that, to our natural minds, provide us with security and love and a sense of belonging.
I have already mentioned the way that Rodney Howard Browne and other ministers belittle, deride and even curse those who do not conform.
In smaller churches, there is a continual pressure to adopt the actions and beliefs of the majority. Instead of leaving it to the individual conscience, the leaders make sure than anyone not conformed to the herd mentality is humiliated in public, isolated and kept back from any recognition of authority. No doubter will ever get to lead the worship team or take bible classes!
Anyone seen to resist the conditioning will be treated as suspect, a social outcast. Even their closest friends and members of their family will scorn them, criticise them, turn their backs.
It is a strong personality that can reject all pressure to conform and belong! Hardly any of us can continue a course of action that brings disapproval, condemnation or humiliation from everyone around us. Jesus Christ was our example: "He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not."
Faced with such rejection any merely human "messiah" might give up the mission as a hopeless, thankless task. The game isn't worth the candle. Yet despite the rejection, betrayal, hatred and condemnation of those around him, Jesus "set his face" to do his Father's will.
"And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem, And sent messengers before his face: and they went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, to make ready for him. And they did not receive him, because his face was as though he would go to Jerusalem." Luke 9:51-53
Jesus was misunderstood by his disciples when he declared his intention to go up to Jerusalem, knowing that he would be executed. One of his closest friends, Peter, rebuked Jesus for "talking negatively"! Jesus said that Peter was thinking like a natural man, not as God.
"From that time Jesus began to show to His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised the third day. Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, "Far be it from You, Lord; this shall not happen to You!" But He turned and said to Peter, "Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men." Matt 16:21-23
Our natural minds think that doing the good and right thing will bring reward, love, blessing, acceptance, approval; therefore anything that is condemned of men is necessarily wrong! But that is just the natural mind at work. Paul insisted that "so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts".
Following God brings us into areas where we do NOT receive approval or love, even from those on the same road - that is the price believers have always paid for obeying the Lord's commands. When it comes to biblical doctrine, we must not expect to receive acceptance or approval - even amongst other believers - nevertheless our face should be set to obey the Lord, rather than man.
The Prophets were not Loved!
Ezekiel's commission to warn the children of Israel of their apostasy was doomed to "failure". God forewarned that prophet that he would be misunderstood, despised and rejected - nevertheless, he would speak the words of God even though they brought him humiliation and condemnation from his peers:
"And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house. And thou shalt speak my words unto them, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear: for they are most rebellious. But thou, son of man, hear what I say unto thee; Be not thou rebellious like that rebellious house: open thy mouth, and eat that I give thee." Ezek 2:6-8
"But the house of Israel will not hearken unto thee; for they will not hearken unto me: for all the house of Israel are impudent and hardhearted. Behold, I have made thy face strong against their faces, and thy forehead strong against their foreheads. As an adamant harder than flint have I made thy forehead." Ezek 3:7-9
The Apostles also experienced rejection and condemnation, for they walked in the footsteps of Jesus:
"For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men. We are fools for Christ's sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised. Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace; And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it: Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day". 1 Cor 4:9-13
This is because the way is narrow that leads to eternal life, and those upon it are considered by the world, and by soulish Christians, as foolish and weak. Nevertheless:
"God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are". 1 Cor 1:27-28
Threats and Judgement
TACTIC 7 - Intimidate the person with the force of group-sanctioned secular psychological threats. For example, it may be suggested or implied that failure to adopt the approved attitude, belief or consequent behavior will lead to severe punishment or dire consequences such as physical or mental illness, the reappearance of a prior physical illness, drug dependence, economic collapse, social failure, divorce, disintegration, failure to find a mate, etc.
You would think that any Christian group would avoid this kind of mental manipulation. Wrong! Today the doubters and nonconformists are threatened with all kinds of consequences - spiritual and physical - if they continue to resist the revival.
Benny Hinn boldly stated that anyone who came against this work of revival and his anointing would come under a curse; "I place a curse on every man and every woman that would stretch his hand against this anointing; I curse that man who dares to speak a word against this ministry..."
Others threaten death to anyone who resists!
"And know this, that even now, I want you to understand something, son. That I the Lord God have rebuked the enemy; I have rebuked him. He stood before me and I said, I rebuke you, satan. Back down, back down. And I have put a new robe upon you, son....And I say, but there are those who look like they don’t care for you. There are those who look like they would come against you and reject you, but I say those are going to rise up and they’re going to stand beside you and they’re going to celebrate you, saith the Lord. They will celebrate you, man of God because even now I am judging a spirit of judgment and criticism in my body. This word will stand, this word will stand saith the Lord. For even as they have judged you, even as they have unrighteously judged you, I have told them, judge yourselves, judge yourselves. For even now I’m dealing strongly with a critical spirit, with a judgmental spirit, and you will see those, you will see them die. For I cannot have it, this move - there is too much at stake, saith the Lord. There is too much at stake at this time. I cannot allow the accuser to have his way. So there will be deaths that will come, son. There will be those who will die, there will be those who simply refuse to receive the latter rain that I am pouring out, for I am pouring out the latter rain and you are one of those who come to release it to my people.
"And know this my son, that I am very very pleased with your heart. I’m pleased with what you’re doing, and there is even again, a paradigm shift, a shift, a shift in the pattern. It’s not the way it was. It’s not the way it used to be, but it’s a new thing happening in the spirit and you are in the forefront, you are in the forefront. And there’s a change coming that will not stop. The river is flowing, and I cannot stop it now. It must go forth and will draw all those who will hear your voice, for you have the voice of God in you. They will come, and they will stand alongside, and there will be a great apostolic and prophetic company of prophets who will stand beside you, saith God." [Lee Williams prophesying over Kim Clement, reported at www.detroitflame.org/words/ Jan 1999, Detroit Flame Meetings, New Life Christian Centre]
Most Christians seek to do the things that bring blessing. Most Christians have a tender conscience and do not want to offend God or man. So these evil manipulative prophets and apostles work on the emotions of their followers saying that rejecting the new paradigm beliefs will lead to cursing, the judgement of God and even premature death! This by itself is enough to scare some believers into conforming.
A less aggressive way of intimidation is to suggest that everything outside the revival group is old, abandoned, powerless, phariseeical and part of a dying era. Nobody wants to be associated with a hackneyed old creed.
The old way is likened to "death", and judgement. It is the way of "Saul" who persecuted the coming king David, and suffered death and hell for his rebellion. The old way is portrayed as ritualistic, hidebound, dry, powerless, and without any spiritual merit. It is a joyless doom and gloom religious system. It is the "withered fig tree", the Pharisee's legalistic, book-bound religion that can never bear fruit and is rejected of God.
Revival leaders strive to tar everybody with the same brush and to create a totally black and white picture where everybody outside the revival is negative, judgemental, unloving, and dead to the voice of God; whereas the new paradigm is vibrant, anointed, thrilling, forward-looking, popular and essential to the salvation of the world.
It is reinforced time and time again that getting and walking in the new anointing, the new paradigm, is the ONLY way of true blessing. If we reject this wave of revival, so they say, we will be doomed to repeat the failures of history. The consequences of disobedience are dire:
- the nations will not be harvested for the Lord
- evil will not be defeated on the earth
- the fallen angels in the heavenlies will not be cast down
- the kingdom will not be brought in
- believers will not reach unity and glorification
- the Church will have failed in its mission
- and Jesus CANNOT return!
Faced with the prospect of failure, standing in the way of the return of Jesus, many Christians give up their resistance and submit. They then become mindless parrots of the new paradigm, unable to rationalise their doubts and fears, eager to damn everyone who disagrees with them.
Initiated followers of the system then fall into an inevitable pattern. Spell-bound, they lose the ability to think, and have only a knee-jerk angry judgemental attitude towards anyone who can still study, research and reason correctly.
They send me mail such as this:
"You religious thing, I love you - I can use your web site to find out where the men and women of God are, because if you are persecuting them then I can be sure that these people are Gods people. Oh religious thing, religious thing, how I have longed to gather you together as a mother hen gathers her little children under her wings but you have not been willing. Keep up the 'good' work and take care, you religious thing. Your kind did this type of thing right through history, only the persecutors of the faith were never remembered, only the mighty men and women of God were, bye bye. Peter Sweeney".
It is now condemned as "religious" to examine the revival dispassionately and impartially; to test the doctrines coming out of the mouths of "prophets" and "apostles"; to test the spirits that manifest at meetings to see if they be of God! Doing what God commands and taking heed to our walk before him is the greatest sin in the book of the revivalists!
Common sense has flown out of the window - why? Believers are being trained like performing seals to do and say the most bizarre, heretical, contradictory and offensive things. They are no longer in their right minds. They are driven by unconscious emotional urges. They have a herd mentality that tramples anything in its path, high on a vision of the future, with an unstoppable zeal for dominion.
Where before have we seen such blatant crowd manipulation for a "noble cause"? In whose honour did we witness stadia full of chanting men and women, singing patriotic songs and shouting slogans of glory and victory? To what former ideology have men and women offered themselves without question - an ideology that demands the suppression of every opposing creed?
All we lack is today's Hitler to stand at the head of Joels' Army - and will he be long in appearing? I wonder!
From all that I have studied and seen, I conclude that there is an attempt, either deliberately or not, to exert pressure and manipulation akin to mind-control to gain acceptance of a revival that is manifestly unbiblical.
I have presented these facts in the hopes that some will take heed, and see the danger to their souls. I know what I say will be misunderstood, and that it will bring more condemnation and threats. Nonetheless, I will not hold back in a mistaken attempt to be fair or "loving" - since warning of hidden dangers is one of the most loving and biblical things we can do, especially at a time of widespread deception.
May God lead you into ALL truth and deliver you from ALL evil!
- CESNUR - Brainwashing and Mind Control Controversies
- Mind Control or Brainwashing list of articles
- FACTNet: Mind Control - protecting freedom of mind
- FACTNet: What is mind control?
- FACTNet: Psychological Coercion Overview
- FACTNet: Is Someone Trying to influence You?
- The Religious Movements Page -brainwashing
- The Process of Brainwashing, Psychological Coercion, and Thought Reform
- The Soviet Art of Brain Washing - A Synthesis of the Russian textbook on Psychopolitics
- Dick Sutphen's 'The Battle for Your Mind'
- Brainwashing - in Communism
- The Rape of the Mind - (a book in eight chapters)
© 1995-2013 Tricia Tillin of Banner Ministries. All rights reserved. Cross+Word Website: http://www.banner.org.uk/ This document is the property of its author and is not to be displayed on other websites, redistributed, sold, reprinted, or reproduced in printed in any other format without permission. Websites may link to this article, if they provide proper title and author information. One copy may be downloaded, stored and/or printed for personal research. All spelling and phraseology is UK English.