Have you ever heard a spiritual leader say something like this:
"Stop rocking the boat! Look, we know Brother X or Y is into some wacky stuff -sure, he's "off the wall" and his church is as flakey as they come! On the quiet, we would never recommend that anyone go there, but he's a nice guy and we have a good working relationship with him, we even meet for coffee and hummus and have joint prayer meetings once a month. We don't like all this controversy over false doctrine, it's ruining our relationship with him, let's just preach the truth and sound doctrine that's enough!"
We have, quite a few times now in fact, heard stuff like this; but is this kind of approach biblical?
Can you just imagine Paul saying it?
Merely Preaching Sound Doctrine Alone is NOT Sufficient
Look at the apostolic pattern. Paul preached and encouraged sound doctrine, but he also preached the whole counsel of God, which meant that he was a vociferous and outspoken opponent of error and false teaching and devoted a considerable amount of time to warning against it:
"Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears."
At Antioch he openly rebuked Peter in front of everyone because "he walked not according to the truth of the Gospel" (Gal. 2:11-14). He didn't keep quiet for the sake of "unity" or fear of offending.
Paul Named Names
He specifically warned Timothy about Hymaneus and and Philetus and Alexander the coppersmith.
"As I urged you when I was going to Macedonia, remain at Ephesus that you may charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine, . . . This charge I entrust to you, Timothy, my child, in accordance with the prophecies previously made about you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, holding faith and a good conscience. By rejecting this, some have made shipwreck of their faith, among whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme." (see 1Tim. 1:3-18)
Paul Did Not Mince His Words About Error And Those Who Taught It
"I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed." (Gal. 1:7-9)
Whoa! Hold on there Paul, that's a bit strong isn't it?
Well what did John the "apostle of love" have to say about false teachers?
"Now this is love: that we walk according to his commandments. This is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning; thus you should walk in it. For many deceivers have gone out into the world, people who do not confess Jesus as Christ coming in the flesh. This person is the deceiver and the antichrist! Watch out, so that you do not lose the things we have worked for, but receive a full reward. Everyone who goes on ahead and does not remain in the teaching of Christ does not have God. The one who remains in this teaching has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house and do not give him any greeting, because the person who gives him a greeting shares in his evil deeds." (2Jn. 6-11)
John says that deceivers are antichrist, and we are not to receive people who bring false doctrine into our homes, not even to acknowledge them, let alone sit down for coffee and hummus or hold joint meetings with them.
Ah, you might say, but wasn't John just referring to a particular false teaching about the person of Christ? Of course specific context is important, but from other places in Scripture we know that this principle was applied to the whole body of apostolic doctrine:
"I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive." (Rom. 16:17-18)
No Middle Road
All of us, but Pastors and leaders in particular, are presented with a stark choice. Do the apostles and prophets of Tikkun/Revive and their NARite ilk meet the biblical standards (not the ones that Tikkun have made up for themselves) for apostleship? Do we believe them to be genuine apostles? If so then we must submit to and align under their apostolic authority, because they proclaim themselves to be God's government and the apostolic leadership of the Israeli Body.
"Each congregational or ministry leader should be part of an apostolic-prophetic network and submitted to its leadership team." (Intrater Apostolic Alignment)
‘. . . . . we order our congregations under apostolic leaders who are chosen by God today and supernaturally confirmed as the servant-overseers of congregations. This is an issue of God’s government. According to New Covenant Scriptures, local congregations are not to be independent. As the congregations multiplied, they were connected to one eldership of the city with many thousands of members. The congregations were also overseen by apostles, . . . . the function of apostles in government and in fostering growth and Kingdom extension beyond the local congregation is crucial.’ (Juster, Dan Apostolic Order)
There is no middle way, no room for compromise, the claims of these "restored apostles" are black and white and leave no "wiggle" room; we either accept them or reject them. If they are God's government, then not to submit to them and is rebellion against the Lord. This is not hearsay, this is what they say, and we have heard first hand from a Tikkun representative that they believe pastors unaligned under apostolic authority are not accountable.
Bill Hamon (a recognised prophetic voice in Juster's personal Tikkun history) said the following:
“It is almost impossible for individuals to humble themselves under God without humbling themselves in submission and relationship to Christ’s delegated representatives of Him to His Church.” (Apostles, Prophets, and the Coming Moves of God)
And it doesn't stop there! Apostle Asher Intrater states the following:
“Another picture of alignment is the plumb line [quoting Amos 7:7-8]…. Either we conform to the plumb line or we will be judged.” (Alignment p. 76-77)
John Bevere another senior NAR figure, whose books are available over here through MAOZ publishing, gives us an insight into what that judgement might be:
“This text should read [1Sam 10:21-22] “For rebellion is witchcraft.” This clarifies the context of this scripture. It is one thing to liken rebellion to witchcraft, but an entirely different issue to say it is actually witchcraft. . . . how many are under its influence unknowingly because of the deception of rebellion? . . . Witchcraft directly opens one to the demonic realm.
“ . . . . rebellion is witchcraft. The more they rebel the more they give legal access to demonic powers to influence, control and empower their lives. By rebelling against the order and the laws of God and His delegated authority, they knowingly grant legal access to the controlling demonic realm.” (Bevere, John. Under Cover. p. 68. Thomas Nelson: Nashville, 2001)
We should note that on a number of occasions "apostle" Intrater has stated that opposition to Tikkun/Revive is demonic in origin and thus those opposing are effectively demonised. (for some recent examples see here, here)
On The Other Hand . . .
Contrariwise, if we do not believe that they are genuine apostles, then they must of necessity be false apostles, and if they are false apostles, then they are:
"deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. "And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds. " (2Cor. 11:13-15)
"I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false." (Rev. 2:2-3)
If we continue in fellowship with those who claim to be "restored apostles and prophets" and possess "the same authority as those in biblical times" while simultaneously rejecting their claims to apostolic office, in other words regarding them as false apostles, --is not this the height of doublemindedness and hypocrisy on our part? Is it not also wilful presumption and rebellion against the Lord? Do we know better than He?
When pastors and leaders consort and co-operate with those who bring false teachings, what kind of example is this for their flocks? Are they not showing them by their behaviour that they do not take biblical doctrine seriously, and that false doctrine is not an issue? Are they not also, in effect, throwing the sheep under their care to the wolves?
Not only so, but this is also supremely unloving to the false teachers themselves, when we say, "Look your false teachings, Scripture-twisting and altered gospel aren't any obstacle to fellowship." Scripture says the diametric opposite; that bringing another gospel places them under a curse (Gal. 1:6-9), that their adding to and subtracting from God's Word is something that is ultimately damnable (Rev. 22:18-20). Should we not be reproving them and exhorting them to repent lest they perish? By not censuring the fake apostles and their false doctrines and instead continuing to commend, consort and co-operate with them; -are we not imperiling their souls and bringing blood-guilt also upon ourselves? If we truly loved them should we not warn them of the danger they are in?
"You shall not hate your brother in your heart, you shall surely rebuke him so that you do not incur sin on account of him." (Lev. 19:17)