keeping a watchful eye on the wolves

East meets West

Messenger of God? Or messenger of…

The following video series is from Final Trumpet:

Todd Bentley: Messenger of God? part 1

Todd Bentley: Messenger of God? part 2

Todd Bentley: Messenger of God? part 3

Todd Bentley: Messenger of God? part 4

Todd Bentley: Messenger of God? part 5

Advertisements

Is Todd Bentley walking in the footsteps of mystics and seers?

Is Todd Bentley actually receiving revelations from God, or is there something more to his visions of angels and messages from heaven? For example, what about his vision of Sadhu Sundar Singh? Read the following and decide if these things are biblical.

To begin with, does this vision line up with what the Bible teaches?

DEATH OF A PHILOSOPHER
The soul of a German philosopher entered into the world of spirits and saw from afar the incomparable glory of the spiritual world, and the boundless happiness of its people. He was delighted with what he saw, but his stubborn intellectualism stood in the way of his entering into it, and enjoying its happiness. Instead of admitting that it was real, he argued thus with himself, “There is no doubt at all that I see all this, but what proof is there that it has objective existence, and is not some illusion conjured up by my mind? From end to end of all this scene I will apply the tests of logic, philosophy and science, and then only will I be convinced that it has a reality of its own, and is no illusion.” Then the angels answered him, “It is evident from your speech that your intellectualism has warped your whole nature, for as spiritual, and not bodily, eyes are needed to see the spiritual world, so spiritual understanding is necessary to comprehend its reality, and not mental exercises in the fundamentals of logic and philosophy. Your science that deals with material facts has been left behind with your physical skull and brain in the World. Here, only that spiritual wisdom is of use which arises out of the fear and love of God.” Then said one of the angels to another, “What a pity it is that people forget that precious word of our Lord, ‘Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall in no wise enter into the Kingdom of Heaven’ (Matt. 18:3). I asked one of the angels what the end of this man would be, and he replied “If this man’s life had been altogether bad, then he would at once have joined the spirits of darkness, but he is not without a moral sense, so for a very long time he will wander blindly round in the dim light of the lower parts of the intermediate state, and keep on bumping his philosophical head, until tired of his foolishness, he repents. Then he will be ready to receive the necessary instruction from the angels appointed for that purpose, and, when instructed, will he be fit to enter into the fuller light of God in the higher sphere.”
The Visions of Sadhu Sundar Singh of India
http://reluctant-messenger.com/sadhu-sundar-singh.htm

This is what the Bible says about second chances for salvation after death:

“And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” Hebrews 9:27

Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:3

Obviously, the above account does not line up with the Bible, therefore, it would be classified as a false teaching from lying spirits. This vision was one of many experienced by Sadhu Sundar Singh (1889-1929). Many people today say that he was a fine Christian, and take great offense that anyone should criticize Todd Bentley’s vision of Sadhu Sundar Singh, whose contemplative steps of prayer he practices.

Strangely enough, Sundar Singh’s visions of wandering souls in the spirit world and heavenly spheres also included contact with a dead mystic and seer named Emanuel Swedenborg:

“I saw him several times some years ago, but I did not know his earthly name. His name in the spiritual world is quite different just according to his high position or office and most beautiful character.”[7]

Sharpe also refers back to Singh’s endorsement of Swedenborg as recorded by Appasamy:

“Swedenborg was a great man, philosopher, scientist and, above all seer of clear visions. I often speak with him in my visions. He occupies a high place in the spiritual world … Having read his books and having come into contact with him in the spiritual world, I can thoroughly recommend him as a great seer.”[8]

Sundar Singh’s correspondence with the Swedish Lutheran bishop Nathan Soderblom in November 1928 further confirms that he claimed visionary contact with Swedenborg.

For western evangelical Christians, Swedenborg has long been regarded as an unorthodox teacher. Some, such as the Christian apologist Walter Martin, have classified Swedenborg and his followers among the cults.[9] In light of the evangelical rejection of Swedenborg’s theology, the omission of Sundar Singh’s endorsement of Swedenborg’s teachings from evangelical biographies is very significant. The difficulty for evangelicals is compounded by Singh’s confirmation of contact with Swedenborg in the spirit world. This visionary form of contact with an unorthodox deceased teacher clashes with the portraits of piety drawn by later evangelical biographers such as Cyril Davey and Phyllis Thompson.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sadhu_Sundar_Singh

Who exactly was this man who Sundar Singh contacted in the spirit world?

Emanuel Swedenborg (1688–1772) was a Swedish scientist, philosopher, Christian mystic, and theologian. Swedenborg had a prolific career as an inventor and scientist. At the age of fifty-six he entered into a spiritual phase, in which he experienced dreams and visions. This culminated in a spiritual awakening, where he claimed he was appointed by the Lord to write a heavenly doctrine to reform Christianity. He claimed that the Lord had opened his eyes, so that from then on he could freely visit heaven and hell, and talk with angels, demons, and other spirits. For the remaining 28 years of his life, he wrote and published 18 theological works, of which the best known was Heaven and Hell (1758),[4] and several unpublished theological works. –wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emanuel_Swedenborg

Not only was Swedenborg a seer and a medium, he was also one of the forerunners to modern spiritualism. Swedenborg believed that he was the only one able to shed light on the true meaning of the Bible, with the help of Angels. This is who Sundar Singh had contact with in the spirit world. Remember this as you read the following…

Let us now get on the fast forward track to June 19, 2006, where Todd Bentley wrote the following…

THE GLORY CLOUD OF REVELATION & PROPHETIC MANTLES ~ PART TWO: CONCLUSION
BY TODD BENTLEY, FRESH FIRE MINISTRIES
http://www.freshfire.ca

…I saw in a vision, the Glory Cloud of Revelation descending upon the church. It was also during this time of prayer that God took me in a vision to what I believed to be the Himalayan Mountains. I saw an Indian man with a turban on his head and heard the whisper of the Spirit say, “This is Sundar Singh. I am releasing anointing of revelation like this.” I had no communication with this old saint, nor did he say anything to me. The experience lasted only a moment…

[…]

Sundar Singh spent at least two hours daily in reading the Scriptures, meditation and prayer. He would arise at 5:00 am and finish by 7:00 or 8:00 depending on what his schedule was for the day. He often spent the whole day or night in prayer. His discipline was to read one chapter of the Bible, rapidly at first reading, then to return to reread passages or verses that were more suggestive to him. These he would linger with and meditate on for as long as it was fruitful for him to do so. Next, he would enter into a period of “recollection” for twenty minutes or so. This was a time of silence, in which he would allow the Lord to speak to him in some way. With his own mind and heart quieted, he opened his mind and his heart to hear what the Lord would have to say to him or just simply enjoy companionship with his Lord. Often this period of silence would extend into a deeper state called “contemplation” in which he enjoyed complete rest and refreshment in the love of God.

Often during times of contemplation, he entered into experiences of ecstasy. He regarded these experiences as the same as St. Paul’s entrance into the “third heaven”. During his latter years, they occurred frequently, as often as ten times a month. About these experiences he said, “I never try to go into ecstasy; nor do I advise others to try. It is a gift to be accepted, but it should not be sought; if given, it is a pearl of great price.”

Anyone who contemplates the heavenly calling of the apostle Paul and his being caught up into the third heaven, and again into Paradise, will lift up his voice to God and say: Glory to God who surely gives great gifts to men!

THE FOUR R’s OF THE CHRISTIAN DEVOTIONAL LIFE

This key is one of the most important tools if we are to see an increase of wisdom and revelation in our lives. In the western Christian tradition, meditation refers to thinking about or the use of the imagination around a passage of scripture, whereas, in India, traditional meditation refers to silencing one’s thoughts. The Christian tradition practices the silencing of thoughts and emotions, but it is called “contemplation” rather than “meditation”. This is one of those unfortunate twists of semantics, which has caused confusion when discussing the spirituality of East and West.

Sundar Singh practiced a sequence of prayer discipline that is identical to ancient Christian monastic disciplines: reading the scriptures, meditation on a passage of the reading (also called response of the mind and heart), recollection, and rest. This sequence is also called lectio divina in Latin. It means divine reading, or more precisely, divine listening, since few people in that day could actually read. When ordinary Christians attended church to hear the Scriptures read aloud, they’d memorize a passage or a verse, and ponder it for a week.

These are the four R’s of lectio divina or Christian devotional life:

1.Reading (hearing) the Word.
2.Responding to the Word with mind and heart.
3.Recollecting oneself with an open mind and open heart to God’s will, and
4.Resting in His Presence.

Christianity is a way of life, not a hobby, or a pastime. As such, we must treat it as serious business. Reflecting on God and His way should not be taken lightly. We must modify our schedules and make the time to meditate, contemplate, and reflect on His word.

Find a quiet place, away from noise or distractions. Isaac went out to meditate in the field in the evening (Genesis 24:63). King David lay on his bed to meditate: “When I remember You upon my bed, and meditate on You in the night watches (Ps. 63:6).
[…]

The entire article by Todd Bentley can be read here:
http://www.freshfire.ca/index.php?Act=read&status=teaching&Id=143&pid=954

*Note: If the Freshfire link becomes no longer available there is something similar here:
http://www.elijahlist.com/words/display_word_pf.html?ID=1400

After seeing this vision of Sundar Singh, Todd Bentley borrowed his practices of meditation, contemplation, and being still, as revealed in his teaching on Soaking:

“I learned from the lives of Brother Lawrence and Sundar Sing (the famous Hindu mystic who radically converted to Christianity a hundred years ago), as God began to birth my ministry into power. At the end of three months of waiting, basking, bathing, marinating, just beeeeeeeing in His presence I had a visitation of the Lord Himself. He stood behind me and every time I turned around to look at Him He would be behind me. I heard the Lord speak to me in an audible voice as a man speaks to a man.”
http://freshfire.ca/index.php?Act=read&status=teaching&Id=119&pid=954&bid=955
SOAKING PART 1
BY REVIVALIST TODD BENTLEY

Not only has Todd Bentley been meditating, soaking and having visions and contact with angels and the spirit world (as Singh and Swedenborg did), he has also been teaching these methods to others, as recently as this past January 14th – 17th at Freshfire’s Secret Place Conference in his home town of Abbotsford, B.C., Canada, where he shared teaching time with Heidi Baker, Rodney Howard-Browne:

Wednesday night: Todd Bentley taught on contemplative prayer and learning to silence your thoughts. He outlined the four prayer steps practiced by Sundar Singh, an Indian prophet who had a visitation from Jesus. The steps include: 1. Read a whole chapter, 2. Meditate on the passage that most spoke to you, 3. Recollect with an open mind and heart as the Holy Spirit reveals the scripture to you, then 4. Rest and restoration in His presence while the Spirit imparts revelation or takes you into the heavens. As we make ourselves available to the Lord, said Todd, it is amazing where we will go with Him.
– The Secret Place 2 Conference
http://www.sfwm.org/newhome/showminrpt.cfm?id=36
SECRET PLACE II – CONFERENCE REPORT

Isn’t it becoming quite obvious by now that Todd Bentley walks in the footsteps of mystics and seers who had contact with the spirit world? Is it any wonder he has similar supernatural experiences and angelic encounters? This is extremely important to understand. If you are a sheep who is following Todd Bentley and seeking after the supernatural realm, please take heed. This in NOT the path that the Good Shepherd leads His sheep on. Run to Him while there is still time!

5 Thus says the LORD concerning the prophets
Who make my people stray;
Who chant “Peace”
While they chew with their teeth,
But who prepare war against him
Who puts nothing into their mouths:
6 “ Therefore you shall have night without vision,
And you shall have darkness without divination;
The sun shall go down on the prophets,
And the day shall be dark for them.
7 So the seers shall be ashamed,
And the diviners abashed;
Indeed they shall all cover their lips;
For there is no answer from God.”

Micah 3:5-7

Essential reading:

Tarot, Carl Jung, Swedenborg, Blake & Freemasons
http://www.crossroad.to/Quotes/occult/theosophy-swedenborg-blake.htm

Sadhu Sundar Singh – Hindu Mystic in Sheeps Clothing
http://discerningtheworld.wordpress.com/2008/05/22/sadhu-sundar-singh-hindu-mystic-in-sheeps-clothing/


Serpent Tracks

Here is a MUST SEE video:

The False Revival (comparison)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtVGxJU-j2I

This 6 minute youtube video by Let Us Reason contains clips comparing the spiritual manifestations of other religions and the new false revivals taking place inside the church. Watch as Todd Bentley, Benny Hinn, Kenneth Copeland, and other false teachers mock God and spread their doctrines of demons to the innocent and unwary.

Watching this video certainly makes it obvious, doesn’t it? I’ve seen many of those clips on other videos, but to see them all together is very effective and disturbing. There can no longer be any doubt that this is the same kundalini serpent power seeking and finding willing vessels to manifest.

Here is a good article on this subject:

THE STRIKING SIMILARITIES BETWEEN THE “TORONTO BLESSING” AND THE SERPENT POWER OF KUNDALINI
http://www.discernment.org/revival/comparis.htm

Here is a DIRECT QUOTE from a Kundalini Page on the web (caps are my addition):

“Usually the awakening of Kundalini was a process which only occurred after years of spiritual practice and meditation. Yet INCREASINGLY, the Kundalini experience is being reported among people who are not undertaking spiritual practices. Since 1993, when Shared Transformation, an American journal for connecting spiritual awakeners first began, it has been contacted by OVER 700 people in the throes of SPONTANEOUS KUNDALINI AROUSAL (Collie & Kree, 1995). These INCREASED reports of spontaneous Kundalini awakening at this time of PLANETARY UPHEAVAL may be INDICATIVE OF A LARGER PURPOSE AS WORK, the beginning of a planetary wake up call…”

Since reading this article I have sent off several e-mails to various “gurus” and New Age sites describing the activity at Toronto and Pensacola and asking their opinions of them and did they think these could be spontaneous Kundalini Awakenings in these folks. (…)

The above article tells me that what used to take years (I know from experience) now is being “granted” immediately to those not even following the yogic path. These occult folks view this as indicative of a LARGER PURPOSE AT WORK. What and/or whose purpose?

The only answer is the larger purpose is that of Satan and his hosts of seducing and deceiving spirits. Their purpose is to dupe well-meaning Christians via demonic manifestations masquerading as the “work of the Spirit.”

My brothers and sisters there is a GLOBAL DEMONIC DECEPTION being perpatrated on 100,000’s of charismatic Christians. Almost all the Charismatic leaders endorse these manifestations as a true move of the Holy Spirit.
[…]

Read more about Kundalini signs and symptoms at the above link. (There is also a comparison chart.)

Also see these:

Comparison Between Kundalini and the so-called Toronto Blessing
http://www.inplainsite.org/html/kundalini.html
(has several charts)

Florida Revival – is there a Kundalini connection?
http://livingjourney.wordpress.com/2008/05/26/florida-revival-is-there-a-the-kundalini-connection/
(has Todd Bentley awakened to kundalini serpent power?)

It may be of interest to note that in a recent interview (see here @13:20), Todd Bentley referred to his salvation experience as his “awakening” or “enlightening.” He says that he got saved because he had an “experience” with God. Was this a Kundalini awakening? How many times have we seen him vibrating and shaking, and spreading it to those he touches? Haven’t we seen enough of this mockery?

Sheep! Wake up and smell the rotten fruit!

“So then, you will know them by their fruits.” Matthew 7:20


Are McLaren, Bentley and Tolle from the same pack?

Brian McLaren is the founding pastor of Cedar Ridge Community Church and an influential leader in the emerging church culture. He was recently listed by Time Magazine as one of the 25 most influential evangelicals in America.

But what he is teaching is far from traditional evangelical or even Protestant doctrine. What he preaches is another gospel. In fact, he admits that he is looking to other sources than the Bible for answers.

In a 2004 interview, Brian McLaren said the following about the Bible:

“We modern Protestants, whether liberal or conservative, can seem to think of only one thing to do with the Bible — analyze it, study it. Many of us are looking for other things to do with the Bible other than analyze it in sermons and studies.

So, we’re looking to the Benedictines, Ignatians, and others to learn ways of contemplating Scripture through practices like lectio divina, examen, and imaginative readings. We’re finding the value in ritual and symbol, which involve the body and imagination, not just the rational powers of analysis — and we’re being helped by brothers and sisters from other traditions.”

-An Interview with Brian McLaren
http://jasonclark.ws/2004/02/20/interview_with_/

Besides, Catholicism, exactly what are some of these other traditions Brian McLaren was talking about?

“Brian McLaren wants us to learn more about ‘meditative practices, about which Zen Buddhism has said much. To talk about different things is not to contradict one another; it is, rather, to have much to offer one another’ (A Generous Orthodoxy, p. 255.) Can Zen Buddhism have something to offer that would improve a Christian’s spiritual life when the Bible teaches us that we are already partakers of Christ Jesus’ divine nature? (2 Peter 1:3-11) McLaren cites contemplative meditation promoter Richard Foster as one of the key mentors for the Emergent movement.”—Spiritual Fusion: East comes West, Mike Oppenheimer, Let Us Reason Ministries
-Source: Brian McLaren – New Age/Mystic/Contemplative
http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/brianmclaren.htm

What does McLaren mean when he talks about these meditative practices?

Brian McLaren’s newest book, Finding Our Way Again: The Return of the Ancient Practices, is about exploring the ancient Christian spiritual practices. The review of this book at Lighthouse Trails Research (here) concludes with this:

In the last chapter of McLaren’s book, “Theosis (via Unitiva),” he sums up his calling by stating that “The purpose of the via purgativa [the practices] is to prepare us for the via illuminativa [the awakening], and the purpose of the via illuminativa is to prepare us for the via unitiva [all is one], the union of our nature with the nature of God” (pp. 171-172). He calls God “fire” and says, “We join God in being fire … Before the beginning … God was All, and All was God” (p. 175). This is the exact same message that Eckhart Tolle and Oprah are propagating. But while many Christians are now condemning Tolle’s message, they don’t realize that the very same message is permeating their very own churches.

Lectio Divina? Imagination? Awakening? Fire? As you may have noticed, McLaren (who says on his Deep Shift website that what we need is a ‘big shift’) is not the only one who is using these words. They are also a big part of the counterfeit revival that is going on right now.

Christianity is undergoing a paradigm shift of major proportions – a shift from faith to feelings; from fact to fantasy; and from reason to esoteric revelation. Leaders of this Counterfeit Revival, such as Benny Hinn, Todd Bentley, Rodney Howard Browne and John Arnott, have peppered their preaching and practice with fabrications, fantasies, and frauds, seemingly unaware of their profound consequences.

Many of the followers who at first flooded into Counterfeit Revival “power centers” have become disillusioned and have now slipped through the cracks into the kingdom of the cults.

John the Apostle warned, “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).

This warning is particularly relevant today, as Christianity is undergoing a paradigm shift of epic proportions.

-Lakeland Revival – Todd Bentley
http://earthless.wordpress.com/2008/05/20/lakeland-revival-todd-bentley/

New Age terms like transition, transformation, energy (fire), unblocking or opening your mind to the supernatural, and the concept of ‘feeling the shift’ are commonly used by many today, incuding Oprah’s friend Eckhart Tolle…

“You ask, “What does Word of Faith and Emergent Church have to do with Oprah?” Most likely you’ve heard of Eckhart Tolle and his blockbuster book A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life Purpose. For the past few months Oprah has been promoting Tolle’s “revolutionary message” to her TV audience and offers a class on XM Satellite Radio. So, Oprah now sponsors two occult classes: A Course in Miracles with Marianne Williamson and A New Earth with Eckhart Tolle.

Listen to what Warren Smith says about The Shift:

“In her first class with Eckhart Tolle, Oprah asked if people had experienced the ‘shift’ while reading Tolle’s book, A New Earth. The question reminded me of Werner Erhard’s New Age EST program in the 1970s that taught this same idea of shifting one’s perception, and then similarly asking – ‘Did you get IT?’ Obviously, there is pressure to ‘get IT’ – to feel the shift: Oprah felt the shift – did you? Are you understanding this new [age] way of looking at yourself and the world? Or, are you being blocked by your mind and your ego from seeing this New Spirituality that can save our planet? Keep logging onto our classes. Keep reading Tolle’s book – you’ll ‘get it.’”
http://www.christianworldviewnetwork.com/print.php?&ArticleID=3470

How interesting that Todd Bentley always calls the fire anointing “it” – step into “IT,” “IT’s” going to happen, this church and that city is going to get “IT,” or ”Come and get “IT”. And other churches are supposedly getting “IT” now too as youth pastors fly to Florida to ‘get some’ and bring “IT” back home.

Keep in mind that Todd Bentley, like McLaren, also has been learning the meditative practices of ‘brothers and sisters in other religions.’ He was discipled early on by a Roman Catholic Charismatic “prophet” named Frenchie. And who can forget his vision of Sadhu Sundar Singh – Hindu Mystic in Sheeps Clothing, whose meditation steps of Lectio Divina he practices AND teaches?

Exactly what is IT that Brian McLaren, Todd Bentley, and Eckhart Tolle are getting from their meditative practices which they have learned from other sources than the Bible? Could it be they are all from the same pack of wolves?

Meanwhile, the sheep on the slope are contemplating grazing on the pretty patches of green New Age grass, totally unaware of the gravity of their dire situation. They have taken their eyes off the Shepherd and have allowed themselves to be lured here by the false shepherds who promise to lead them to IT. They are oblivious to the watchmen who shout, “Don’t do it sheep! IT is not what you think IT is! Run away from “IT”, and back to the safety of the Good Shepherd, while there is still time!”

Some perk up their ears and listen, but most of them don’t want the truth. They want a pack of lies told by a pack of wolves. They just want IT.

There is a way which seems right to a man, But ITS end is the way of death. Proverbs 14:12

But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons – 1 Timothy 4:1

Related reading:

Todd Bentley and a Spirit Named “Winds of Change”
http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/index.php?p=1099&more=1&c=1


LECTIO DIVINA – Leading Sheep to a New Level of Consciousness

Lectio Divina

Lectio Divina is derived from a Latin word that means “holy reading.” It is an ancient method of slowly reading the scriptures in a repetitive fashion in order to encounter the presence of God.

Friar Luke Dysinger explains that this “VERY ANCIENT art, practiced at one time by all Christians, is the technique known as lectio divina – a slow, contemplative praying of the Scriptures which enables the Bible, the Word of God, to become a means of union with God.” (See The Ancient Art of Lectio Divina)

Today, this practice that has been kept alive in the tradition of Benedictine monastics and oblates is not only popular among Catholics, it has gained acceptance in other faiths and, more recently, in the emerging church.

The Youth Ministry & Spirituality Project, an organization dedicated to contemplative youth ministry, has a description of the four steps of Lectio Divina on their website:

In order to practice lectio divina, select a time and place that is peaceful and in which you may be alert and prayerfully attentive. Dispose yourself for prayer in whatever way is natural for you. This may be a spoken prayer to God to open you more fully to the Spirit, a gentle relaxation process that focuses on breathing, singing or chanting, or simply a few minutes of silence to empty yourself of thoughts, images, and emotions.

Reading (lectio) – Slowly begin reading a biblical passage as if it were a long awaited love letter addressed to you. Approach it reverentially and expectantly, in a way that savors each word and phrase. Read the passage until you hear a word or phrase that touches you, resonates, attracts or even disturbs you.

Reflecting (meditatio) – Ponder this word or phrase for a few minutes. Let it sink in slowly and deeply until you are resting in it. Listen for what the word or phrase is saying to you at this moment in your life, what it may be offering to you, what it may be demanding of you.

Expressing (oratio) – When you feel ready, openly and honestly express to God the prayers that arise spontaneously within you from your experience of this word or phrase. These may be prayers of thanksgiving, petition, intercession, lament, or praise.

Resting (contemplatio) – Allow yourself to simply rest silently with God for a time in the stillness of your heart remaining open to the quiet fullness of God’s love and peace. This is like the silence of communion between the mother holding her sleeping infant child or between lovers whose communication with each other passes beyond words.

An Ancient Way of Praying with Scripture
(http://www.ymsp.org/resources/practices/lectio_divina.html)

Mike Perschon at Youth Specialties compares the four steps of Lectio Divina to “four levels of consciousness…which introduces you at each new level into a whole new world of reality” that occurs through the four levels of repetitious reading:

1- LITERAL LEVEL CONSCIOUSNESS
2- Moral level of consciousness
3- the Allegorical level which requires a Spiritual level of listening
4- We simply rest in the presence of the one who has used His word as a means of inviting us to accept His transforming embrace. We call this level, Union of Life or the unitive level of consciousness.
An Experience of Lectio Divina
(http://www.cellofpeace.com/refl_lectio.htm)

It is no secret that chanting a mantra indeed empties the mind of thought and opens one up to a different state of consciousness. Mantras are used in yoga, Zen, Hindu, and Transcendental Meditation. Here is what some of these websites say about mantras:

*From a Yoga website:

“Modern science has reaffirmed what yogis have known for thousands of years – that SOUND is able to effect the chemistry of the body and mind, and alter thought patterns. (…) Mantra Meditation is a VERY Powerful technique!
You will discover that the repetition of Mantra allows your mind to focus and concentrate more completely on sound, and clear away other thoughts, emotions and distractions which divert our energies. Our senses become more acute and our mind become sharper and more perceptive as the mind clears away the jumble of unnecessary inner dialogue.”
http://www.focalpointyoga.com/mantra_meditation.htm

*From a Meditation website:

“The repetition of a mantra…is meant as a method of practice which brings about a power (siddhi) to reach the supreme state of consciousness. In this state there is silence within the mind which becomes still (shaant) and eventually you will merge the mind or individual awareness with the whole, which is Pure Consciousness and Knowingness. Every time you practice you obtain the result, as this fourth state of consciousness is always with you.”
-http://meditate4life.com/four-stages.htm

In spite of the well known purpose of mantra repetition to clear the mind and achieve this state of altered consciousness, many Christians today are mistakenly teaching that this is how to meditate on the Word of God. But is this how we fill our minds with God’s Word – by emptying our minds?

True biblical meditation involves thinking and understanding, as we read at bible.org in an article called Biblical Meditation:

What Does It Mean to Meditate?

The first question we must consider concerns the meaning of meditation and what meditation involves. This is particularly important to the Christian because of the great and growing emphasis on meditation in eastern religions. Transcendental meditation, as it is often called, is not biblical meditation. It is dangerous and actually opens up one’s mind for Satanic attack as it is found in New Age thinking.

(…)

Meditation means “the act of focusing one’s thoughts: to ponder, think on, muse.” Meditation consists of reflective thinking or contemplation, usually on a specific subject to discern its meaning or significance or a plan of action.

(…)

In Eastern forms of meditation as in TM there is an attempt to empty the mind. Biblical meditation, however, is an attempt to empty the mind of the wrong things in order to fill it with what is right and true according to the index of God’s inspired Word.

Biblical Meditation by J. Hampton Keathley
http://www.bible.org/page.php?page_id=989

If you want to learn about God, understand His Word, and enter into His presence, Lectio Divina is not the way to go about it. What would you do if someone called you and kept repeating the same phrase over and over again? Would you talk to them, or would you hang up the phone?

———-

*Related reading:

What is Lectio Divina? @GotQuestions.org
http://www.gotquestions.org/lectio-divina.htm

Todd Bentley and Contemplative Meditation

Todd Bentley Taught Contemplative Prayer and Silence

***UPDATE:

More Disappearing Trails

https://sheepyweepy.wordpress.com/2008/06/27/more-disappearing-trails/


More Sheep Talk

The sheep are baaa-ing today, and this is what they are saying…

“Meet the New thing- Same as the Old thing” “Will We get Fooled Again?”

Bentley’s healing video promoted by New Age website

Drunk in the Spirit?

Todd Bentley Says that the Heavens Open in Certain Geological Locations

Does Todd Bentley Bend the Bible?

Revival in Florida #2

At the last link, Lest Any Man Should Boast , a question is asked of the sheep:

Is Todd Bentley’s “Fire” trying to get into your church?

I was wondering what Fire Retardant people are using to keep Bentley’s Fire out of their church. He is continually instructing the recipients of his anointing to take the Fire back to their church’s and communities. He seems to be aiming this primarily at the youth and youth pastors.

How are you dealing with this?

And finally, this one is about a Hindu mystic wolf in sheeps clothing:

Sadhu Sundar Singh – Hindu Mystic in Sheeps Clothing

(Remember, Todd Bentley saw a vision of Sundar Singh and later taught the prayer steps of contemplative spirituality that he practiced).


Tracking the Disappearing Trail

It’s very strange when you are tracking a trail and it suddenly disappears into thin air.

The following is from –

The Way Christian Fellowship
Food for Sheep.
Water for Goats.

Todd Bentley: Do we have anything to worry about?
http://blog.thewaycf.com/2008/05/todd-bentley-do-we-have-anything-to.html

Does a true shepherd have to retract what he says? Does a true shepherd have to cover up and change his story? You be the judge.

Here is another strange occurance in the disappearing trail mystery:

There was a page at Todd Bentley’s Freshfire Ministry entitled THE GLORY CLOUD OF REVELATION & PROPHETIC MANTLES ~ PART TWO: CONCLUSION BY TODD BENTLEY, FRESH FIRE MINISTRIES. This page told in detail Todd’s vision of Sundar Singh as well as details about the Christian Contemplative Tradition called Lectio Divina.

This is no longer available. It has disappeared into thin air.

Sometimes those who are being tracked have to go to great lengths to cover their tracks.

Update:

It was reported that the Sundar Singh vision page had disappeared from Freshfire’s website. Wolf Tracks has tracked it down. The link has been changed from this:

http://www.freshfire.ca/teaching_details.php?Id=143

to this:

http://www.freshfire.ca/index.php?Act=read&status=teaching&Id=143&pid=954

But we are still on the lookout for Emma’s whereabouts, as reported in the above link.

(Fellow bloggers may also want to change their links accordingly, as has been done on the Wolf Tracks post Todd Bentley and Contemplative Meditation.)


Todd Bentley Taught Contemplative Prayer and Silence

Before Todd Bentley made his way to Florida for the big revival, he spoke at another conference called Secret Place in his hometown of Abbotsford, B.C. (Canada). The following report from Stand Firm World Ministries reveals that at this conference, Todd Bentley taught on contemplative prayer and silence using the 4 step meditation method of Sundar Singh:

SECRET PLACE II – CONFERENCE REPORT

http://www.sfwm.org/newhome/showminrpt.cfm?id=36

Attendees at Fresh Fire Ministries’ recent second annual Secret Place conference basked in a heavy weight of God’s presence for days. The conference, held in Abbotsford from January 14th – 17th, drew crowds of close to 2000 (including a large overflow seating area). Ravenously hungry for God, people lined up for hours outside the auditorium in response to the simple invitation to come enter the Lord’s presence, draw close to Him and gaze on His beauty.

With great passion, conference speakers Heidi Baker, Rodney Howard-Browne, Jason Upton, Keith Miller and Todd Bentley shared and imparted some powerful revelation received in the secret place with God. Along with the teaching, the anointed worship of Jason Upton and Michael Larson took attendees deeper into the heart and glory of God each day. Here is some of the powerful revelation delivered at the conference.

Wednesday night: Todd Bentley taught on contemplative prayer and learning to silence your thoughts. He outlined the four prayer steps practiced by Sundar Singh, an Indian prophet who had a visitation from “Jesus.” The steps include: 1. Read a whole chapter, 2. Meditate on the passage that most spoke to you, 3. Recollect with an open mind and heart as the Holy Spirit reveals the scripture to you, then 4. Rest and restoration in His presence while the Spirit imparts revelation or takes you into the heavens. […]

Saturday Morning: This session Todd Bentley focused on “the secret place of the Most High” from Psalm 91. He emphasized that we can’t dwell in the secret place unless we have a revelation of the Most High. In addition, to enter the secret place we need to leave behind all the distractions of the outer court – the place of sacrifice, distractions of the mind, guilt and shame by making a decision to enter. He said as we walk past the inner court of illumination, intercession, healing and deliverance, we go through to the Holy Place, that place of silent awe where self focus and even prayer cease. Few Christians, he said, ever get into that Holy Place of awe, splendor and majesty. During the session he unpacked the following powerful scriptures: Psalm 27:4-5; Psalm 31:20 and Psalm 84:1,2. Todd concluded by saying that real prayer involves leaving the busyness and resting in silence

It may be interesting to note that Todd Bentley is not the only one who has seen Sundar Singh in a vision. According to this link at The Elijah List (2003), it was a double vision – Todd Bentley’s friend Bob Jones also saw Sundar Singh in a revelation…

(**Note: Previously, in a word through Paul Keith Davis published on The Elijah List, Bob Jones saw in a vision a heavenly messenger named Sundar — Many people wondered what the origins of the name were and it’s meaning. Research showed that Sundar simply is a regular, male name that comes from an ancient language of India called Sanskrit. Sanskrit shares common roots with the Latin and Greek languages, as well as many others such as the Germanic and Celtic languages. Sundar means “Beautiful/Handsome/Pleasant to the eyes and ears,” while Singh is a common suffix added on, meaning “Lion.”
Paul Keith Davis and Todd Bentley received revelation independently of each other from the Lord on Sundar. Each was regarding the Lord’s anointing to open the eyes and ears of His people to release revelation. –Steve Shultz, The Elijah List**)
-The Elijah List

Sundar Singh was a mystic who believed in universalism and experienced visions in frequent states of ecstasy 8-10 times a month. It has been said that “In him Christianity and Hinduism seem to meet” (SADHU SUNDAR SINGH –geocites.com).

Related articles:

Todd Bentley and Contemplative Meditation (lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog)

CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER VS BIBLICAL PRAYER (earnestlycontend.com)

Here is some sheep food to chew on regarding what comes out of the mouths of wolves like these:

The Pitfalls of False Prophets
Why the Predictions of Errant Prophets are Worthless
by Bob DeWaay
http://cicministry.org/commentary/issue67b.htm

Extended Thoughts on Bob Jones…
http://signofjonah.wordpress.com/2006/06/07/extended-thoughts-on-bob-jones/

Todd Bentleys and prophet Bob Jones angel Emma
http://endtimespropheticwords.wordpress.com/2008/04/24/todd-bentleys-and-prophet-bob-jones-angel-emma/


Todd Bentley and Contemplative Meditation

Has anyone ever heard of Todd Bentley’s strange vision? You can read about it here:

THE GLORY CLOUD OF REVELATION & PROPHETIC MANTLES – PART 2: CONCLUSION BY TODD BENTLEY, FRESH FIRE MINISTRIES
http://www.freshfire.ca/teaching_details.php?Id=143

***NOTE: as of May 18, 2008, this link has been changed. This page can now be found here:

http://www.freshfire.ca/index.php?Act=read&status=teaching&Id=143&pid=954

This is what he saw:
“…in a vision, the Glory Cloud of Revelation descending upon the church. It was also during this time of prayer that God took me in a vision to what I believed to be the Himalayan Mountains. I saw an Indian man with a turban on his head and heard the whisper of the Spirit say, “This is Sundar Singh. I am releasing anointing of revelation like this.” I had no communication with this old saint, nor did he say anything to me. The experience lasted only a moment….”

And this is the revelation he learned from the man with a turban:

THE CHRISTIAN CONTEMPLATIVE TRADITION (LECTIO DIVINA)

Sundar Singh spent at least two hours daily in reading the Scriptures, meditation and prayer. He would arise at 5:00 am and finish by 7:00 or 8:00 depending on what his schedule was for the day. He often spent the whole day or night in prayer. His discipline was to read one chapter of the Bible, rapidly at first reading, then to return to reread passages or verses that were more suggestive to him. These he would linger with and meditate on for as long as it was fruitful for him to do so. Next, he would enter into a period of “recollection” for twenty minutes or so. This was a time of silence, in which he would allow the Lord to speak to him in some way. With his own mind and heart quieted, he opened his mind and his heart to hear what the Lord would have to say to him or just simply enjoy companionship with his Lord. Often this period of silence would extend into a deeper state called “contemplation” in which he enjoyed complete rest and refreshment in the love of God.

Often during times of contemplation, he entered into experiences of ecstasy. He regarded these experiences as the same as St. Paul’s entrance into the “third heaven”. During his latter years, they occurred frequently, as often as ten times a month. About these experiences he said, “I never try to go into ecstasy; nor do I advise others to try. It is a gift to be accepted, but it should not be sought; if given, it is a pearl of great price.”

Anyone who contemplates the heavenly calling of the apostle Paul and his being caught up into the third heaven, and again into Paradise, will lift up his voice to God and say: Glory to God who surely gives great gifts to men!

THE FOUR R’s OF THE CHRISTIAN DEVOTIONAL LIFE

This key is one of the most important tools if we are to see an increase of wisdom and revelation in our lives. In the western Christian tradition, meditation refers to thinking about or the use of the imagination around a passage of scripture, whereas, in India, traditional meditation refers to silencing one’s thoughts. The Christian tradition practices the silencing of thoughts and emotions, but it is called “contemplation” rather than “meditation”. This is one of those unfortunate twists of semantics, which has caused confusion when discussing the spirituality of East and West.

Sundar Singh practiced a sequence of prayer discipline that is identical to ancient Christian monastic disciplines: reading the scriptures, meditation on a passage of the reading (also called response of the mind and heart), recollection, and rest. This sequence is also called lectio divina in Latin. It means divine reading, or more precisely, divine listening, since few people in that day could actually read.

Why would God give his children a vision of a contemplative who combined the East and West in his meditative disciplines? Is this where Todd Bentley’s ideas about visions, spirituality, and ‘soaking’ prayer are coming from?
There is a Todd Bently resource called Developing Your Seer Gift – CD that can be purchased here:
http://shop.newdayinternational.org/customer/product.php?productid=435

According to the description at the above link, some of the ways in which Todd Bentley teaches to develop your seer gift is by Activating Your Spiritual Senses and by opening Spiritual Gates, Doors and Portals:

There are over eight ways that Todd will outline in this teaching that will help you position yourself for God to open the eyes of your heart, such as: overcoming fear of the unknown, meditating in your heart and being still, soaking and contemplative prayer, and meditating on God’s Word.

…Todd will give clarification, both through the Word of God and by sharing amazing personal experiences, how spiritual gates, doors and portals trigger supernatural encounters with God. Using Jacob’s life as an example, Todd will teach you how to position yourself for a holy visitation from God.

The Bible warns us about spiritual realms and principalities. Rather than teaching about contemplative spirituality and opening the gates to the dangers of the supernatural, a real shepherd would be more concerned about laying down his life to protect his sheep.

Watch out sheep. When you see wolf tracks like this, run to the real Shepherd.

———-

**********Note: Update: It appears Freshfire has been playing hide and seek with this page on their website. However, you can find something similar at the Elijah List here (it is a little bit different):

http://www.elijahlist.com/words/display_word_pf.html?ID=1400