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The Dutch Reformed Church’s Downward Spiral into Apostasy

Posted by Tom Lessing on April 20, 2009

Isaiah 2:6 Surely [Lord] You have rejected and forsaken your people, the house of Jacob, because they are filled [with customs] from the east and with soothsayers [who foretell] like the Philistines; also they strike hands and make pledges and agreements with the children of aliens. (Emphasis added)

Several high profile Dutch Reformed clergy as well as other well-known professors and doctors have openly and publically proclaimed that Christianity does not have the exclusive rights to spiritual truths and that Christians may learn from Eastern religions and even the New Age Movement. Professor Stephan Joubert of e-church fame, said on March 1, 2009 in a sermon at the Kemptonkruin Dutch Reformed Church:

“He [Rob Bell] says you must engage the culture. You must listen to the Buddhists. You must listen to what they have to say. It startles Christians because they do not clearly hear what Rob Bell is saying. He does not say: become like them. He says: read their stuff; find out why they are so important. They too may have truth. Truth is not only in Christianity. You find truth in Judaism. You can find truth in atheism. You can find truth wherever. God’s general truth is a little wider, but you say ‘Jesus is Lord.’”

Prof. Stephan Joubert is deceived and he is deceiving many if not all of his congregants in the e-church. Does the emerging mantra “Jesus is Lord” which was used ever so profusely in the charismatic movement have magical qualities, giving one a free pass to say and do whatever one likes without having to fear God’s righteous judgments? Has he never read Matthew 7:22, 23?

Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’

Rev. Jannie Pelser of the Rant and Dal Community Church and presenter of the programme “Brandpunt” on Radio Pulpit  is equally deceived. He said on Friday, 3 April  2009 in his programme.

“Is God’s revelation and work not bigger than Christianity? Could there not be elements . . . could we not learn from one another, regardless of the fact that it may even be the New Age. But when I think in terms of the contemplative [spirituality] . . . a being still before God, an openness to God. Is it not a rewarding moment?

My commentary here has since sparked off a debate between me and Rev. Guillaume Smit of the Brackenfell West Dutch Reformed Church in the Cape who feels that Christians may participate in Eastern religious activities such as yoga, karate, tae kwon do and other meditation techniques without compunction or fear that they may be getting involved in idolatry. He wrote as follows here.

This is why a Christian could, in principle, have the freedom to participate in eastern sport such as tae kwon do, karate or judo, provided the instructor only teaches the sport and not any form of eastern philosophy along with the sport. And since this is a point of contention for more conservative (sic) Christians, a Christian could also participate in meditation techniques that enable him/her to relax and get focused on worship or studying Scripture, provided this isn’t part of practices that is closely associated with eastern religions. Obviously, it makes sense to argue that participating in new age practices such as astrology or spiritism falls outside the scope of this principle, as these practices are also closely associated with the occult.

Could it be possible that Rev. Smit has ruled out the work of the Holy Spirit in worship and the studying of the Bible? Rev Guillaume’s statement that meditation techniques enable Christians to focus on worship and the studying of the Bible, is completely at variance with the teachings of Jesus. True worship, He said, is to worship God in spirit and in truth (John 4:24). God, Who is Spirit, cannot be worshipped in any other way than in spirit and in truth. This simply means that anyone’s spirit who hasn’t been quickened (made alive unto God) through repentance and faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross cannot worship God because their spirit is still dead in sin and trespasses (Ephesians 2:1). Jesus made this point when he told the man, who first wanted to bury his dad after Jesus had commanded him to follow Him, to let the dead bury their dead (Luke 9:60). The second prerequisite for true worship is to worship God in truth, the truth as we find it in God’s Word ALONE. The Holy Spirit ALONE can enlighten the mind to understand the Scriptures. In fact, Jesus said the Holy Spirit would teach God’s children all things and bring to their remembrance the things whatsoever He taught His disciples. In his High Priestly prayer Jesus asked his Father to sanctify his disciples in his truth, emphasising the fact that his Word is truth. Both Stephan Joubert and Jannie Pelser as well as Guillaume Smit are in the dangerous position of denying and vilifying the fact that it is ONLY the Holy Spirit that guides us into ALL truth (John 16:13). The Holy Spirit works ONLY within the parameters of God’s revealed truth as we find it in His Word. As such there can be no beneficial truths whatsoever in other religions and philosophies, let alone the New Age movement. I fear that our churches and their congregants (the sheep and little lambs) are being led astray by their pastors and “dominees” into a maze or labyrinth of venomous reptiles from whence it is becoming increasingly difficult to escape. In little more than a quarter of a century the Dutch reformed Church has moved from a position where it was outspoken against Eastern religions and their practices to a position of tolerance and participation mainly through one of its most “respected” champions of so-called Christian meditation, Dr. Willem Nicol.

Below is a tract the Dutch Reformed Church distributed to warn its congregants against transcendental meditation. As you can see it was published in 1977, a mere 32 years ago which shows how rapidly the Dutch Reformed Church has spiralled into apostasy since that time.

transcendental-meditation-11 Transcendental Meditation 2

Transcendental Meditation 3 Transcendental Meditation 4

I would like to translate some key phrases in behalf of our English readers. On page 3 it reads as follows:

The initiation ceremony is clearly a religious ritual and no one is allowed to participate in TM without it. The pupil and teacher remove their shoes, enter the room with candles and incense and place an offering of a white handkerchief, fruit and flowers on the altar in front of a photo of Guru Dev, Maharishi’s master.

A song of prayer is sung during this event to glorify pagan gods.

The pupil then receives his own MANTRA, a word or sound of one or more syllables which is completely meaningless to the pupil. TM claims that every person on earth has his/her own mantra that uniquely suits them. They assert that the teacher fortuitously receives the pupil’s mantra from Maharishi and that the teacher has the knack to know his pupil so well after only a few minutes that he is able to present him with just the right one.

A heavy atmosphere of mysticism and superstition surrounds this mantra: this word and it alone enables the devotee to meditate. It may never be written down or disclosed to someone else. The reason for this is evident. No wonder some people have discovered that they have the same mantra.

The above ceremony is known as the “Puja” in which the photo of the Guru Dev is used as a representation of the Hindu deities, Brahman, Shiva and Vishnu. The MANTRA can also be the name of one of thousands of Hindu gods. Christianized meditation in which the name “Jesus” or a phrase such as “have mercy on me” are used as mantras are no less dangerous to one’s spiritual life than the above mentioned ceremony. Some may argue that Christianized meditation has no affiliation to the offerings in the “Puja” ceremony. The fact remains that the repetitive mumbling of the mantra, whatever it may be, produces altered states of consciousness and opens the devotee up to demonic entities. In any case the Word of God forbids Christians to use a vain repetition of words as the gentiles do who think they will be heard by much speaking (Matthew 6:7).

Rev. Smit’s provisos to “detoxify” any form of Eastern meditation from its inherent and inseparable religious overtones, so that the Christian may worship God and study His Word in a relaxed way, is preposterous. The Bible warns that we should have no spiritual union with idolaters and the unbelievers’ spiritualities.

2 Cor 6:14 Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God.

The flip side of this coin is, however, that if your body is not the temple of God through repentance and faith in Jesus Christ and the Spirit of God does not indwell you, you may probably participate in these idolatrous practices without compunction. By all means, continue to do so but remember that the wrath of God will remain on you until you repent of your ways. This applies to all the other disciplines Rev. Smit mentioned in his defence of these practices, i.e. tae kwon do, karate or judo. Karate has its roots in Zen Buddhism and its principles were handed down in great secrecy by word of mouth from Zen Master to Buddhist Monk. An Indian Buddhist priest named Bodhidharma in the 6th century A.D. in China, synthesized karate techniques and Yoga meditation in order to unite mind, spirit, and body. (Among the Chinese styles are kung fu or gung fu, wu shu, and pa kua. Tai kwan do and hapkido are among the Korean styles.) Karate is clearly not only a mental and moral exercise, but indeed, a spiritual experience. In each practice session there is a concerted effort to unite mind, spirit, and body just as Bodhidharma sought to do with Zen priests.

Rev 18: 4 I heard another voice from heaven, saying, “Come out of her, my people, so that you will not participate in her sins and receive of her plagues;

To end my commentary on this subject I would like to quote from Dr. Kurt Koch’s book “Occult ABC” to highlight the dangers of yoga.

Yoga chakras YOGAYoga of Jesus

The word yoga is derived from Sanskrit and is possibly the root underlying the Greek word “ioge,” shelter, and the Latin “jugum,” yoke. If these linguistic associations are anything to go by, to practice yoga is to put oneself under a yoke, or to seek shelter from a protective power.

It is impossible to present yoga fully in a short chapter. To begin with, there are many forms of Indian and Tibetan yoga, so many that it would take more than one large volume to list them all. It would take up too much space here even to describe one single form.

For a good introduction to yoga, Maurice Ray’s book Joga, ja oder nein? is recommended. This book describes Hatha Yoga and Raja (Royal) Yoga from the standpoint of the Christian faith. It is the best discussion of yoga from a Christian point of view known to me.

In this brief account I can only give a very limited part of the whole. I have used the following sources:

1. Pastoral counselling in the West and the East, especially in East Asia, where I have travelled extensively eight times.

2. Information given me by the Indian professor de Roy, who has studied the yoga practice in his country.

3. The definitive work by Mishra on Patanjali Yoga: The Textbook of Yoga Psychology. Several key sentences from Mishra’s work will introduce us to the spiritual atmosphere of yoga:

a. The higher ego of man is transcendent and immanent, without beginning and without end, it has no birth and no death.

b. Yoga means the synthesis of the physical and metaphysical universe.

c. Heaven and hell are only products of the human mind.

d. Behind magic, mysticism and also behind the occult the yoga system is present.

These four sentences show clearly that yoga and the Bible cannot be harmonized in the remotest way. The systems of the Far East and the Christian faith are irreconcilable opposites.

If we take a cross section of the most well-known forms of yoga, we can recognize four stages.

The first stage has the aim of helping the student of yoga to gain control of his consciousness and his body. This goal is achieved by means of mental and physical exercises.

The mental exercises include meditation, autogenic training, con­centration, and “koan,” a litany involving the continuous repetition of a mantra (secret word).

The physical exercises include breathing exercises and various bodily postures like the lotus position, the cobra position, and the headstand.

This first stage is thus psychosomatic in nature, producing unity of body and mind.

There are many Christians who believe that it is possible to par­ticipate in this first stage of yoga without harm. It is merely a matter of relaxation exercises. If only this were true! Counselling experience tells otherwise. This technique of relaxation and these “emptying exercises” so highly spoken of by the yogis lead to the inflowing of another spirit—other spirits. The students of yoga do not notice it.

Ex 266 G.C., a Christian teacher, told me that during an evan­gelistic campaign, a certain man and his daughter had wished to surrender their lives to Christ. But they found themselves unable to do so. Only after they had renounced their yoga exercises and repented of them did they succeed in coming through to Christ.

Ex 267 In Johannesburg, South Africa, I counselled a theology student. He was a young man who had been converted to Christ some years before. Hearing about a yoga course which had been announced in church, he applied to join. After a few months, he noticed a change in his spiritual life. His desire to read the Bible disappeared. He also became tired of prayer. I advised him very strongly to give up his yoga exercises at once and to renounce the whole thing.

The second stage of yoga involves the control of the unconscious mind. When a person has mastered the second stage, he can control and guide, for instance, his visceral nerves. I have met masters of the second stage who can perform astonishing feats.

Ex 268 In a Western university town, I met a theology student who practiced the second stage of yoga. He was able to increase or decrease his circulation of blood. Being inclined to be humorous, he used to entertain his fellow students by showing off his abilities. He could make one of his ears red and the other one white at the same time. He could also cause red spots to appear on his skin by suggestion.

I could only wonder what kind of gospel this young man will one day preach to his parishioners.

Ex 271 The most enlightening experience I have had of this sort was in California. A young woman came to me for counselling. She told me that she had been a master of the second stage of yoga. In the course of her yoga exercises, she had actually chosen Jesus as her guru. Note this, not Jesus as her Savior and Redeemer, but only as her example, her great master. During her yoga exercises, she developed occult powers. She became unhappy about it, and tried to free herself. It was then that she first realized what a power yoga had over her. She began to seek Christ. Several of her friends prayed for her. After terrible struggles she became free. She wrote an account of her experi­ences entitled “From Yoga to Christ.” She gave me permission to publish it.

Yoga does not liberate; it enslaves. Yoga does not free; it binds. Yoga does not enlighten; it brings confusion. Yoga does not prepare the way for Christ, as Father J. M. Dechanet (Cahier du Val) claims, but makes people immune to redemption through Christ. Yoga does not open the door for the Holy Spirit, but for spiritist spirits.

The third stage of yoga is concerned with the mastery of the natural powers. I have found very few examples of this in the West, but very many in the East. It is the speciality of Tibetan yogis to combine magic and yoga. After three years of apprenticeship under a lama, who is the master of this art, the adept (apprentice) has to be able to produce energy in the form of heat in natural objects, such as melting ice by means of mental concentration.

I have still more frequently come across the converse of this, where yogis are able to produce heat and even flames. We find this among the fire worshippers, who also practice fire magic.

Ex 272 In Port Elizabeth, one of these fire masters, who had emigrated from India to South Africa, came to me for counselling. He made a confession and asked for my help. I showed him the way to Jesus. He was willing to accept Jesus as his Lord. I do not know if he has continued in the faith. Occultists often fall back into their old ways.

Those who are still in doubt as to whether stage one or two of yoga results in occult processes must admit that when it comes to stage three, yoga leads to the powers of the abyss.

At the fourth stage, the yogi gains the mastery of the dark arts. The Lamas of Tibet are particularly well known for this. I have collected very many examples of stage four yoga. In Kalimpong on the Tibetan border, I came into contact with many Tibetans. I have also received reports from former missionaries in Tibet. Especially enlightening was the confession of a man who has given me permission to publish his story.

Ex 273 My informant had studied yoga, magic and spiritism for ten years with the Lamas. He had heard of my lectures in Sydney and followed me on to Newcastle, Australia. He made a full confession and named his specific sins. He said, “What the Lamas teach is the cult of spirits, the cult of demons. Please help me to become free.” We had a long talk together. From this man I learned that the Tibetan yogis are masters of the trance, materialization, excursion of the soul, telekinesis, levitation, perfectly controlled telepathy, and all the arts of spiritism. At stage four, which I have met in this intensity only with Tibetans, Zombis, Alauts, Maccumbas, and voodooists, yoga can no longer, with the best will in the world, disguise its true character. Here yoga reaches its ultimate master — Satan, whose desire it is with his promises and his wiles to snatch people away into the abyss.

There is no need for further comment on the religious side of yoga. Yoga ends not only in self-redemption and atheism, but in the cult of demons. Those who undertake to take part in yoga exercises enter a force field by which they are unwittingly directed towards the origin of these powers. These are the powers of which Paul speaks in his epistles, (see Colossians 2:15). Christ has freed us from the spirits, demons, and powers. The chief of these powers is Lucifer, who is seeking to win back those he has lost. And what successes he has gained, for yoga has become the fashion in the West!

A quotation from a book published overseas confirms my own view. In the book “Satan kumpf um diese Welt,” by Lindsey and Carlson, we read, “Chris Pike (a son of Bishop Pike) told me in a personal interview that he previously practiced yoga and meditation. As a result he had become controlled by spirit beings which had nearly destroyed his life. He then renounced these powers in the name of Jesus, and today he is a witness to the transforming power of Jesus Christ. His life was completely changed.” (Effects of Occult Devices 261)

All Christians who are allowing themselves unsuspectingly to be led astray into yoga should take note of Galatians 5:1, “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” (Kurt Koch: Occult ABC” Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, pp 256-261).

One of the strangest phenomena of our postmodern times is that many clergy actually practice the “ancient-future” philosophy of the emergent church. They cling to their traditional roots and simultaneously take hold of so-called new age practices in a wonderfully pyrotechnical display of emergent unification. This is not of God and will inevitably lead you into the miseries of the abyss . . . unless of course you repent and turn to Jesus Christ.

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35 Responses to “The Dutch Reformed Church’s Downward Spiral into Apostasy”

  1. Amanda said

    The picture of ‘Jesus’ meditating is utterly offensive. But apparently not to the DRC.

    Woe to them! For they walked in the way of Cain and abandoned themselves for the sake of gain to Balaam’s error and perished in Korah’s rebellion. These are hidden reefs at your love feasts, as they feast with you without fear, shepherds feeding themselves; waterless clouds, swept along by winds; fruitless trees in late autumn, twice dead, uprooted; wild waves of the sea, casting up the foam of their own shame; wandering stars, for whom the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved forever. Jud 1:11-13

  2. Nico said

    I can recommend the following books on the subject of Eastern Mystisim, Emergent/Contemplative techniques invading the Church.

    For Many Shall Come in My Name – Ray Yungen
    A Time of Departing – Ray Yungen
    Yoga in the Body of Christ – Dave Hunt

  3. cobus said

    Sorry, nie kans gesien om deur die lang post te lees nie, maar ek sien dit verwys weer na ‘n klomp boeke wat ek nog nooit op enige NG dominee se rak gesien het nie, so glo nie ek hoef dit te ernstig op te neem nie. Definitief nie op enige iemand in my gemeente of ring nie.

    Daai “Jesus is Lord” frase is nie Emergent nie Tom, dit kom van Paulus af. Gaan lees gerus Fillipense, een van sy briewe.

    Sou ons dalk maar na die 1977 kerk toe moet teruggaan? Waar almal wat nie in die susterskerke behoort het nie as sektes afgemaak word? Dis nou lekker om sektebearbeiding no 12 aan te haal, maar wat van al die ander? Moet ons regtig teruggaan na ‘n tyd waar spreke oor die Heilige Gees basies taboe was? Jy is welkom Tom, en ek is seker as jy bietjie soek sal jy ‘n NG Gemeente kry wat presies dit doen, en waar jy baie gemaklik sal wees. Vir my egter, ek kan nie.

  4. God het die hele christen kerkstruktuur uitgespuug nie net een denominasie nie, inteendeel Hy het hulle aan Satan oorgegee…

    Soos wat God met die uitverkore volk Israel, vanaf die jaar met die Exodus in 1447VC tot en met die kruisiging van Jesus in 33 AD geduldig was, en hulle geestelike hoerery gedurende hierdie periode sou verduur het Hy in Sy Woord vir ons in gelykenistaal geskrywe wat ons van die Nuwe Testameniese kerk-era te wagte moes wees. So sou Hy die Nuwe Testamentiese Israel vir 1955 jaar vanaf 33AD tot 1988AD geduldig verduur…!

    Eerstens sou God volgens die eed wat Hy teenoor Homself gesweer het voor die grondlegging van hierdie wereld vir Homself ‘n eiendomsvolk uitgekies. Twee instellings sou gedurende hierdie verlossingsplan van Hom as “voertuie” of werktuie gebruik word om Sy koninkryk op aarde te verteenwoordig, naamlik die Ou Testamentiese Kerk (die volk Israel) en die Nuwe Testamentiese Kerk (die kerke en kerkstrukture wat met die Bybel identifiseer)

    Beide voertuie sou vanwee hulle hoerery van God (en dus Sy Woord) afvallig raak. Soos daar ‘n einde sou kom aan die Ou Testamentiese kerk-era (toe die voorhangsel tydens die kruisgebeure van bo tot onder oop geskeur het en God met Israel van ouds sou klaarmaak) sou daar ‘n einde kom aan die Nuwe Testamentiese kerk-era….

    Noudat ons in die laaste van laaste dae inbeweeg het en God die seels van die Woord geopen en Hy diegene se geestelike oë en ore open na Sy genadige en soewereine goeddunke begin ons raaksien dat God kortvoor Sy wederkoms met die kerk en kerkstrukture ook klaargemaak het. Sonder die genadige meewerking van die Heilige Gees sou die laaste afvalligheid net meer sigbaar raak en kan diegene wat uit die strukture gedryf of gevlug het toenemend raaksien hoe Satan (wat hom as ‘n engel van die Lig voordoen en deur ministers of righteousness werk) die hele kerkstruktuur deceive… sonder dat hulle dit agterkom natuurlik, en wel ooreenkomstig dit wat God in 2 Thess 2 verklaar.

    (2Th 2:11) En daarom sal God hulle die krag van die dwaling stuur, om die leuen te glo,

    Mag God elkeen van ons genadig wees.

  5. cobus said

    Ek het voorheen al gesê julle sal die terminologie bietjie aan moet werk rondom emerging, emergent, emergence, ontluikend ens. Dit dui nie op dieselfde goed nie, en ek het nog nie gevind dat hierdie manne bogenoem labels as selfverwysend gebruik nie. Maar dis seker maar ‘n tegniese punt.

    Ek lees baie graag, wie is die manne wie se werke ons moet lees? Luther en Calvyn? Dak bietjie vroeër? Aquinas? Nog vroeër? Augustinus? Nog vroeër? Die kerkvaders Tertulianus, Origines, Basil, Gregory et al? Die nuwe Testament skrywers Paulus en Lukas et al? Waar sal dit vir my veilig wees om te begin lees? Op watter punt het die mense begin dwaal?

  6. Amanda said

    Ds. Cobus

    Sorry, nie kans gesien om deur die lang post te lees nie, maar ek sien dit verwys weer na ‘n klomp boeke wat ek nog nooit op enige NG dominee se rak gesien het nie, so glo nie ek hoef dit te ernstig op te neem nie. Definitief nie op enige iemand in my gemeente of ring nie.

    Kyk op jou eie boekrak, dominee. Jy weet goed dat die ontluikendes meditasie propageer. Net soos wat jy doen. Net soos wat Prof. Stephan Joubert doen. Is daar enige skrywers van die ontluikende kerk wat nie mediteer nie? Die man van wie jy ‘n bewonderaar is, Brian McClaren wil hê dat ons meer moet leer van “ 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”. Hy sê ook dat Richard Foster een van die sleutel mentors is van die ontluikende kerk.

    Let us reason ministries skryf:

    Contemplative Prayer that has become an accepted practice of the emergent movement it also has a direct link to Buddhism and other eastern religious practices. Richard Foster considered Thomas Merton’s book Contemplative Prayer “a must book” . . . and credits his [Merton’s] books as being “priceless wisdom for all Christians who long to go deeper in the spiritual life.” Merton wrote “I see no contradiction between Buddhism and Christianity. . . . I intend to become as good a Buddhist as I can” (A Time of Departing by Ray Yungen (published by Lighthouse Trails Publishing), p. 75.) Thomas Merton commended Hindu – Buddhist, and other mystics as those who had experienced “‘ union with the God of truth and love.”

    Thomas het die punt gemaak dat, waar die NGK voorheen ernstig gemaan het téén meditasie, word dit nou bevorder. Jy doen dit. Jou vriendin Nicole Hamman doen dit in haar gemeente, maar darem met haar toga aan, so ook Dr. Johan van den Heever en Prof. Stephan Joubert. Is daar herders in die NGK wat nog waarsku teen meditasie? Dit is mos nie asof Thomas ‘n geheim oopvlek nie, want dit word dan openlik bevorder. Dit lyk my die NGK wat voorheen Jesus Christus verkondig het, het nou 180 grade geswaai na ‘n intergeloofskerk uit die christelike tradisie wat van die wêreld ‘n beter plek wil maak.

    Maar Jesus Christus het gesê:

    Ek is die weg en die waarheid en die lewe; niemand kom na die Vader behalwe deur My nie. Joh 14:6

    Ds. Cobus, verduidelik vir my net een ding. Waarom word jy en jou mede-reisigers soos byvoorbeeld Ds. Guillaume Smit so kwaad vir Thomas en probeer julle nog voorgee dat wat hy sê van wat in die NGK gebeur het, nie waar is nie? Natuurlik gaan julle interpretasies verskil, want daar is geen ooreenstemming tussen Thomas se fundamentalistiese verstaan van die Bybel en jou (her-) interpretasie nie, maar dit is tog ‘n onbetwisbare feit dat meditasie in die NGK bedryf word en jy weet dit. Gee hom dit gelyk.

  7. Guillaume Smit said

    Beste Amanda

    Vergun my enkele korreksies:

    Dis ‘n leuen om te beweer dat ek kwaad geword het vir Thomas Lessing. In geen van my eie publikasies waar mnr Lessing vermeld word, het ek enigsins gesuggereer dat ek ontsteld is oor sy standpunte nie. Intdeendeel is dit hy wat in baie emosionele taal te kenne gegee het dat hy van my mening verskil. Die feit dat ek reguit met hom gepraat het, spruit daaruit dat hy van meet af aan gekies het om my geloof en integriteit aan te val op so ‘n manier dat dit klink of hy ‘n persoonlike probleem met my het – en hy ken my nie eens nie.

    Dan is dit ‘n onwaarheid om te beweer die NG Kerk bedryf meditasie. Die feit dat in sommige gemeentes gesels word oor stil-word in die teenwoordigheid van die Here, en die feit dat daar predikante is wat antieke kerklike praktyke van stilte en fokusgebede herontdek het, durf nie veralgemeen te word as “oosterse meditasie” nie. Dalk moet daar voor jul eie deur gevee word: deur julle flagrante veralgemenings is julle besig om jul eie leuens te skep. Dit doen afbreuk aan enige integriteit wat julle sou gehad het. Mens gebruik nie een of twee geïsoleerde voorbeelde en dig dit dan toe aan ‘n hele, grote groep – soos die NG Kerk – nie. Vra jouself af: Is meditasie ‘n integrale deel van alle NG gemeentes se bediening? Word alle NG gemeentes verplig te mediteer? Het die NG Kerk amptelik enige formele besluite geneem om meditasie (spesifiek dan transendentale meditasie, soos Thomas in sy laaste bloginskrywing beweer) as amptelike bedieningspraktyk aanvaar? As jy werklik eerlik wil wees, sal jy moet erken die antwoord hierop is nee.

    Derdens, van wanneer af is dit eties aanvaarbaar om mense doelbewus buite die konteks wat hulleself gegee het, aan te haal? Waarom het mnr Lessing nie in sy blogskrywing die eerlikheid aan die dag gelê om te noem dat ek in my eie blogskrywing gesê het die Bybel leer dat mens vryheid het in etiese kwessies wat geassosieer kan word met afgodery nie (1 Kor 10:23-11:1)? Hy mag wel nie daarmee saamgestem het nie, maar as hy werklik eerbaar wou wees, sou hy moes erkenning gee daaraan dat my opmerkings oor joga en karate spruit uit ‘n verstaan van ‘n spesifieke Bybelteks. Gerieflikheidshalwe, lyk dit, verswyg hy dit – en dit doen sy eie argument skade aan om nie die hele storie te vertel nie. Christene is tog nie veronderstel om op hierdie manier vuil te speel nie. Boonop kies hy om nie te noem dat ek onomwonde gesê het ekself is nie gemaklik met die beoefening van joga nie. Gaan lees gerus my eie blogskrywing – mnr Lessing het immers die skakel daarheen in sy pos hierbo verskaf.

    Laastens, mnr Lessing skryf in sy reaksie op ds Cobus van Wyngaard se antwoord dat hy slegs vir Jesus verkondig en dis ‘n ander Jesus as wat ekself sou verkondig. Die Jesus wat ek verkondig, word in die bladsye van die Bybel besing. Ek preek en leer niks minder nie, en niks meer nie. En die Bybel leer dat Jesus die duiwel oorwin het. Waarom is julle dan so gepla met die duiwel? Die oorwinning is deur Jesus behaal. Die opdrag van die Bybel (Ef 6:17) is om op die verkondiging van Jesus se oorwinning aan die kruis te fokus (die swaard in die Christen se wapenrusting). Julle, daarenteen, is egter behep met enigiets wat volgens julle definisie demonies voorkom. Dis asof julle geloofsfokus net op die duiwel en sy werk in hierdie wêreld is. Kan julle nie sien dat hierdie eensydige fokus die evangelie terugdruk in ‘n borstrok van wettiese geloofsbelewing en vrees vir die bonatuurlike nie? Julle raak so verstring in julle soeke na enigiets wat boos is, dat julle nie agterkom julle speel reg in julle vyand se kraal nie. 1 Pet 5 leer immers dat hy rondloop soos ‘n brullende leeu en soek om te verskeur. Waarom, dan, doen julle sy werk vir hom en julle verskeur (onder die vaandel van getrouheid aan die Woord) enigiemand wat lyk of hy/sy verskil van julle siening? Die Bybel leer tog dat Christene niks te vrees het vir die duiwel nie (Rom 8:37-39) – geen engele of magte kan mens van die liefde van Christus skei nie.

    Ek is bewus daarvan dat jy radikaal met my gaan verskil. Ek respekteer egter jou mening. Al wat ek vra, is dat jy myne ook sal respekteer. Ek glo en preek en leer niks anders nie as die gekruisigde en opgestane Christus ter versoening van sondes – soos die Bybel dit leer. Hoe durf jy en mnr Lessing my as ‘n vyand van God verklaar?

    Groete

    Dr Guillaume Smit

  8. Amanda said

    Ds. Cobus

    Op watter punt het die mense begin dwaal?

    Op dieselfde punt as die ontluikendes:

    Yea, hath God said,

    Vergelyk met Rob Bell, Leonard Sweet, Marcus Borg, Tony Jones, Brian McClaren, John Dominic Crossan, Andries van Aarde, Julian Muller, Cobus van Wyngaard, Guillaume Smit en Stephan Joubert onder andere.

    Ek stel voor dat jy begin by die Evangelie van Johannes. Baie gevaarlik vir ontluikendes.

  9. Amanda said

    Ds. Smit

    Dis ‘n leuen om te beweer dat ek kwaad geword het vir Thomas Lessing.

    Het ek te veel grasie toegelaat deur u uitlating oor Thomas aan emosie toe te skryf?:

    In the mean time you have become an agent of the devil himself.

    Wil u daardie stelling eerder laat staan as die kalm, weldeurdagte waarneming van ‘n ontluikende NGK predikant?

    Dan is dit ‘n onwaarheid om te beweer die NG Kerk bedryf meditasie.

    Sê gerus as Thomas se antwoord onvoldoende is. Ek het gevra:

    Is daar herders in die NGK wat nog waarsku teen meditasie?

    Kom ek vra sommer vir u. Waarsku u teen meditasie? Is daar enige skrywers van die ontluikende kerk wat nie mediteer nie? Ek vind dit werklik moeilik om uit u skrywes agter te kom waar u eintlik staan oor ‘n hele aantal sake onder andere u siening oor homoseksualiteit en of u glo dat Jona in die vis ‘n historiese gebeurtenis was.

    Waarom, dan, doen julle sy werk vir hom en julle verskeur (onder die vaandel van getrouheid aan die Woord) enigiemand wat lyk of hy/sy verskil van julle siening?

    Dit sal regtig help indien u stellings sal staaf met voorbeelde. Verskeur ek byvoorbeeld vir Ds. Cobus as dan hy self sê:

    Ek is goed bekend met Lectio Divina, maar dankie vir die link, sal my bes doen om dit deel van my jeugbediening te maak.

    Hier kan u sien hoe lyk sy kerk se Skemerdiens:

    Die kerkraad van die Familiekerk NG Kameeldrif het besluit dat daar ruimte geskep moet word vir ’n alternatiewe erediens in die gemeente. Daar moet veral gefokus word op persone wat behoefte het aan ’n kontemplatiewe spiritualiteit.

    En

    Lees gerus die boek : Gebed van die Hart of Stem in die Stilte wat beide deur Willem Nicol geskryf is.

    Ek hoop dit beantwoord u vrae. Indien nie, vra gerus weer.

  10. Amanda said

    Ds. Cobus

    So Amanda, dalk moet jy liewers kom kuier as om uitlatings te maak oor my boekrak, daar is baie boeke op hom, maar duidelik weet jy nie wat dit is nie.

    Ek het gesê Brian McLaren, omdat jy ‘n bewonderaar van hom is. Gaan lees gerus die skakel wat ek gegee het en vergewis jou van wat die man, wat jy bewonder, sê.

    En ek kan nie sien dat ek kwaadword nie.

    Dominee, jy het Thomas se hele skrywe afgemaak as iets wat jy nie ernstig hoef op te neem nie, omdat jy die ‘klomp boeke’ nog nooit op enige NG dominee se rak gesien het nie. Sy argument het nie gegaan oor watter boeke op iemand se rak is nie, maar dat, waar die NGK nog onlangs teen meditasie gewaarsku het, verdra hulle dit en neem daaraan deel. Waarom sy punt probeer weerlê met so ‘n swak en deursigtige redenasie? En, o ja, jy hom twee keer van jou blogs weggejaag.

  11. Guillaume Smit said

    Beste Amanda

    Ter wille van groter duidelikheid wil ek net ‘n saak duidelik stel: Dis ‘n onwaarheid om my te klassifiseer as deel van die ontluikende kerk beweging. Ek stel wel belang in dieselfde kwessies as lede van die organisasies wat die ontluikende kerk se doelwitte bevorder, synde vernuwing in die kerk en ‘n terugkeer na Bybelse beginsels vir gemeentebediening. Trouens ek het reeds in 1997 my doktorsgraad oor die onderwerp voltooi, voordat daar sprake was van ‘n ontluikende kerk beweging en is tans weer besig met studie oor die onderwerp. Dit beteken nie ek is ‘n lid van enige ontluikende-kerk organisasie nie.

    Hierbenewens is ek sedert 1993 in die bediening en sedert 1995 verbonde aan gemeentes. Om 16 jaar in die bediening te wees, kan beswaarlik beskou word as “ontluikend.”

    Moet asb nie nog ‘n leuen die wêreld in stuur deur my ‘n ontluikende NG predikant te noem nie.

  12. cobus said

    Wat in die term ontleen homself daartoe vriend Thomas? Ek bedoel, is daar een of ander verskuilde etimologiese betekenis in “ontluikend” en “emerging” wat verwys na “‘n tuiste te bied wat nie noodwendig oor alles saamstem nie”???

    As ek jou dan nou reg verstaan wil jy NIE hê dat daar teruggekeer moet word na Bybelse beginsels in gemeentebediening nie??? Waar verstaan ek dit mis:
    1) ds. Smit wil terugkeer na Bybelse beginsels
    2) o.a maak dit dat hy ontluikend is (alhoewel hy homself nie so wil noem nie)
    3) enige iemand wat op enige manier net soortvan dieselfde sake in belang het as die ontluikende kerk is ontluikend (volgens jou, dit is natuurlik totaal en al onwaar as jy enigsins die gesprek gevolg het)
    4) jy met alles in jou wese gekant is teen die ontluikende kerk en op geen manier het jy enige bande met die ontluikende kerk nie
    5) moet ek tot die konklusie kom dat jy gekant is daarteen om na Bybelse beginsels in gemeentebediening terug te keer???

    Ek verstaan jou seker verkeerd nie waar nie? Of jy’t jouself seker verkeerd uitgedruk? Of jy stem eintlik saam met ds. Smit oor die Bybelse beginsels? Is daar dalk elemente van die ontluikende kerk waar mee jy saamstem?

    En dan natuurlik steeds die probleem wat jy heeltyd ontdek rondom die verskillende betekenisse van verskillende woorde… maar ek aanvaar jy’t nie ‘n idee wat om daarmee te maak nie.

  13. Guillaume Smit said

    Dis problematies dat die gesprek elke keer swenk in ‘n nuwe rigting: Ons is nou by terugkeer na Bybelse beginsels. Ek wil sekere vrae aan Thomas en Amanda stel:

    * Wat glo julle oor die duiwel? Is hy die heerser van hierdie wêreld? Kan hy ‘n houvas kry op gelowige mense en hoe? Is hy deur Christus oorwin of moet dit nog gebeur?

    * Wat is julle verbintenis met die NG Kerk, en hoekom is hierdie kerkverband so sterk in julle visier?

    * Wat glo julle presies oor die kruisdood en opstanding van Jesus en die implikasie daarvan op die verlossing vir mense? Is dit voorwaardelik? Kan dit weer ongedaan maak word deur die duiwel?

    * Hoe, volgens julle, moet kerklike bediening in 2009 lyk? Hoe moet die eredienste lyk? Waarop moet predikante in hulle prediking fokus? In hulle pastorale werk?

    * Die bronne wat julle ter ondersteuning van julle argumente aanhaal – kan julle volledige verwysings na hierdie bronne verskaf sodat ander lesers vir hulleself gaan kyk of dit wat daar staan en wat hier aangehaal word, met mekaar ooreenstem?

    Ek sien uit na die reaksie!

  14. GeorgeM said

    Amen

  15. GeorgeM said

    … en vertel ons iets van jouself …

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