Todd Bentley, Bob Jones, and Patricia King Practice Astral Projection
By Bob DeWaay
In a bizarre You Tube.com video of "prophet" Patricia King's TV program, fellow "prophet" Bob Jones and revivalist Todd Bentley discuss the practice of visiting "the third heaven". Jones also professes to have taught Bentley and King the practice.[i] In the clip from her aptly-titled show, "Extreme Prophetic" (which has been viewed more than 50,000 times), she introduces Jones as a seer: "Many people don't understand seer prophets because they see visions and revelations and supernatural encounters and mystical experiences, and Bob Jones in our day, I think, is one of the champions of the seer realm. In fact, as a prophet he's probably the most accurate prophet in our generation, but he is going to share some insights with us." King evidently has low standards for accuracy. In 1997 Jones prophesied that an earthquake would destroy Los Angeles and that terrorists with nuclear bombs would also attack the city.[ii] He told Christians to flee, which means he considered the events to be imminent.
The topic of the day for this particular interview, however, was not predictive prophecy but travel to the third heaven. Bentley had previously called King and described traveling into heaven. Here is the account of how he learned this:
Yeah, well the first time that I had met Bob was actually in Grant's Pass, Oregon and we were sitting in a restaurant and I was real hungry and I knew Bob was a real seer prophet and I thought Lord I am going to get an impartation. I've been having all these encounters and all these visions and experiences already soaking, but I thought Lord I need to talk to someone who has been walking in this that's really a senior prophet. So when I met Bob I thought Lord, I am going to get an impartation. I remember talking to Bob in a restaurant about going into the heavens and what it was, and we were talking about the third heaven and going into the immediate abode into that place; the dwelling place of God. I thought-that's awesome, I'm hungry for it too. I wanted more because up into that point, sovereignly God was just visiting me, sovereignly God was just visiting me and I was just waiting in his presence and sovereignly was visiting me. And Bob said to me, He said, we can go right now. And I said what do you mean we can go right now? Like we can just make a decision, right now, and enter into that realm of the spirit? And he said sure we can, don't you have faith boy? (or something like that)-that's what he said to me (laughter). And I remember Bob took my hand and everyone else sitting at the table; I don't know maybe 20-30 of the people were yakking at the table, it was quite noisy, a lot of the other leaders there; and Bob just takes my hand, like this, and he says "Alright, here we go, close your eyes. And I remember closing my eyes and Bob saying "Okay there it is, can you feel it, alright here we go, we are going in, whoa we're going in"; and all of a sudden I felt myself going up. I felt my body being lifted up and it was moving really fast and then he was like "can you smell it? Ah hah, there it is, can you smell it?" That's what he said to me Bob and he said "it's the vanilla and right when Bob said "the vanilla" I said "I smell vanilla" and then we started smelling all these other fragrances of the anointing, and then he said "Let's bring them back with us now".
During the King interview, Jones claimed that he goes up to the third heaven at will and does so every day. He also claims that once one gets past the second heaven, the "hooks" of Satan come out and the angels come to greet such soul travelers. He also claims that he teaches children how to have such experiences and that they are naturals at it.
The key question is whether Christians can validly practice occult astral projection (even if they do not call it that). Paul's description of his experience shows many contrasts with the ones Bentley and Jones claim:
I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago-whether in the body I do not know, or out of the body I do not know, God knows-such a man was caught up to the third heaven. And I know how such a man-whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, God knows-was caught up into Paradise, and heard inexpressible words, which a man is not permitted to speak. (2Corinthians 12:2-4)
1) Paul did not even mention his experience until 14 years later, and he did so reluctantly and only to refute the claims of false teachers who took their stand on false visions and experiences. Paul speaks of himself in the third person because of a desire not to boast or emphasize his experience. He was driven to mention it only because of false apostles who claimed superior experiences.
2) Paul said that he was "caught up," using an aorist passive participle (something that happened at a point in time and caused by another). This was something that happened to Paul that he did not seek. David Garland explains, "This verb suggests that 'Paul's experience was an involuntary one in which God took the initiative rather than one brought about by preparation or special techniques.' The experience was not something he sought or initiated and therefore was not something that he could repeat whenever he wanted."[iii]
3) Whatever Paul heard, it was not lawful to speak about. God has chosen what He wants revealed-and what he wants revealed appears in Scripture. Anything further, even if gained by a valid experience like Paul's, is not to be spoken.
4) Jones claims that when he makes his daily trip to heaven he feels wind and is greeted by angels. Paul's experience did not cause him to meet angels, but rather caused him to receive an "angel from Satan" (literal translation of the phrase in 2Corinthians 12:7). According to Garland, there were stories of such visits in Jewish apocalyptic literature and pagan mystery religions: "Paul's account of his journey to heaven differs from the tours of heaven and hell recorded by other apocalyptic and mystical writers of the age. He does not say how he was transported because he does not know. He does not visit a series of heavens. He is not let in on secrets that he can then disclose to others or put in a book to be sealed for a later time. The meaning of what he sees and hears is not interpreted by an angelic tour guide. In the aftermath what he gets instead is an angel from Satan who plagues him with a "thorn" that leads him to a deeper understanding of his ministry."[iv]
The visits to heaven that Bentley and Jones revel in are of the pagan variety. Jones claims that the reason he can go to the third heaven daily is that he has faith for such an experience. The Bible does not teach that if we have enough faith we can do this sort of soul travel akin to pagan astral projection.
The video in question includes teachings that are common in the Word of Faith camp. For example, Bentley said:
Yes Lord. That spirit of faith, that tangible substance; faith is a substance and we are saying "Let it come", that spirit upon each one right now… being released, that energy, that virtue being released into the faith. It's coming alive, it's resurrecting, and it's being imparted right now; a spirit of faith to believe things that you have never been able to believe for; and it becomes easy.
The idea that faith is a "tangible" entity in the universe, a force to tap into, is patently false. Faith must have an object; it is the noun form of the verb "to believe." The object of our faith is God, not the idea of believing that an unbiblical experience will happen. Bob Jones says, "So I have a faith for the supernatural to become a natural in the body of Christ." Such an idea is akin to the New Age understanding of miracles and the supernatural.[v] Jones also says, "And that they [Christians] are really called; not so much just to have the faith in God, but to have the faith of God." That is yet another heresy from the Word of Faith camp-that faith is a tangible entity God uses, and if we learn to do the same we can have what Kenneth Hagin called "the God kind of faith."
Given the gravity of the heresies and unbiblical experiences that Jones, Bentley, and King promote, it is obvious that Bentley's experience-oriented "revivals" are not based on the gospel of Jesus Christ or repentance and faith. Bentley's definition of faith has nothing to do with having Biblically defined faith in Christ. His grandiose claims are of the sort that Paul warned against in Colossians and 2 Corinthians. May the Lord open peoples' eyes to the dangers they face when they listen to such men.
Distributed by www.worldviewweekend.com
[iii] Garland, D. E. (2001, c1999). Vol. 29: 2 Corinthians (electronic ed.). Logos Library System; The New American Commentary (511). Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers.
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Jesus is Lord
I have a delemia with alot of whats being said. If a man or woman fall in error does this make there ministry void? If so then we have to take out Moses teachings and David's + many more. The likes off Todd Bentley's ministry has brought in 1 million converts. That is fantastic. Alot of those people may never sit under todds teaching but they have been brought into the kingdom. Praise God. Somsthing else that seems quite strange is that Jesus left the church in the hands of fishermen who recieve alot of truth via vision and Angels. The gospel is vital cross,blood etc but if we are judged on all our doctrine then we are all in touble.
|Posted On: 08/20/08 12:09:59 PM
||Age 36, AUSTRALIA
Simple Googles for More Wacky Todd Stuff
Google Todd Bentley cold reading.
For some seriously wierd stuff/teachings from Todd's website plug this one into google:
revelation imagination site:freshfire.ca
Notice how much their imagination, sanctified imagination as they call it, is central to their "revelations."
|Posted On: 07/27/08 07:48:23 PM
||Age 30, FL
Are you being ironic?
Your response may be entirely true, but a bunch of bare assertions are of little value. And also, by your own criteria your response, since it is not in the Bible, is therefore unbiblical. Last Sunday, my pastor's sermon, while quite excellent, contained a lot of expository teaching. All of that wasn't in the Bible, either. So, it must be unbiblical?
|Posted On: 07/26/08 06:13:19 PM
||Age 49, MT
Notice Who Is In Charge...
In Scripture we see visions, signs and wonders as gifts from Yahweh not because we learn or are determined enough. We may need determination of certain knowledge in order to perform certain tasks but the power and control is ALWAYS God.
Bentley, King, Roberts, Hinn and many others supposedly do these things because they control the power (directionally and the ability to turn it off and on). Jesus never acted independently of His Father's direction (He waited for ministry to start at His Father's command and pronouncement) and neither did the apostles. Bentley and other fakes are man-centered, man-controlled, man-learned and man-executed "prophets" and "healers." Just because one says "in Jesus' name" doesn't mean that it is true.
Hinn supposedly can control the Spirit enough to direct it to knock over a section of rally attendees.
Bentley knees someone in the stomach to bring "healing."
King is inc charge of when she sees "visions" from God.
Robertscan "feel" those with specific needs through the airwaves.
All of these people bring the focus on them. Scripture says that the focus and glory will go to Him and not the person if the person is a true prophet or spokesperson.
Grace and Peace,
|Posted On: 07/26/08 12:25:25 PM
||Age 40, NH
As my title says... Which Bible are they reading? Because my Bible says the COMPLETE OPPOSITE from the one that they are reading. I do not want to bash them... it is the will of God that all flesh be reconciled back to Him... but that would take two things... one of which is already done. Jesus and Repentance....
Amen on this article. I am glad my pastor got a hold of me before I took the hour and a half drive to see someone that I was ignorant about.
My people parish because of lack of knowledge.... too bad that some of those people are bringing others with them.
|Posted On: 07/26/08 03:13:33 AM
||Age 26, FL
Hmm... which IS legitimate?...
The way to discern if one is biblical is simple; Paul's experience is IN THE BIBLE, while the newer experiences are not, making them by nature UNBIBLICAL (you know, because they're not found in the Bible.) Then when compared, you can see a difference between the two experiences described. Paul's account we take as gospel truth because it is located in the inerrant Word of God. Period. That gives it all the validity needed. When we look at the rather grandiose claims of the other three, they seem a bit contrived. As someone who knew Patricia King (I worked her book table when she came in town for conferences), I can assure you I am not making harsh judgements on her (or the other men's) character. I'm just informing you they are liars.
|Posted On: 07/25/08 06:28:34 PM
||Age 26, OH
BENTLEY IMPLIES THAT HE IS THE WORD OF GOD
This man Bentley is being foolish and should have read his Bible before speaking. He says that he can CAUSE himself to be taken into the 3rd heaven by his faith. NO MOVE OF GOD STARTS WITH MAN. God does not follow man, but we are to follow him. Peter knew this fact when he wrote 2 Peter 1:21 (New American Standard Bible) 21for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.-- No prophecy ever started with man but always starts with God. This would also be true for any move of God. But for Bentley to speak that he is going into the 3rd heaven would be prophecy if it came true. This man is following demons not God. -- For Bentley to say "faith is the substance of what we are saying" is gross error. Romans 10:17 (King James Version) 17So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.-- This does not mean that faith comes from hearing men speak, for men are not The Word of God. The Bible is very clear who the Word of God is and that is The Lord Jesus Christ. When Peter got his revelation that Jesus was God is did not come from the scriptures or preaching of men, but Jesus told Peter that this came form the Father in heaven. It is upon this principle that Jesus builds His church. We do not depend on any man for a revelation or miracle from God. There is NO mediator between us and God except Jesus Christ who is God Almighty Himself. So we are to look directly to The Lord Jesus Himself NOT to any man or super prophet. This is error of the worst kind. This Bentley is drawing people after himself and they will disappointed in the end for depending on any man. The Lord Jesus is THE ONE who shed His blood for us and we are to trust in Him and no one else. Bentley is trying to imply that he has super faith and so we should look to him. Faith is nothing but a gift from God so NO MAN SHOULD BOAST. Lou
|Posted On: 07/25/08 05:47:12 PM
||Age 64, OH
Bob Jones describes his "trips to heaven" as "little raptures" that he takes each day.
I cannot believe that people would believe this, but upon speaking to the staff of a leader involved in contemplative spirituality, I was told that Paul's vision of heaven could have been done through mantra style medition.
It seems that many people are twisting scripture to allow themselves the freedom to practice pagan spirituality.
|Posted On: 07/25/08 03:39:52 PM
||Age 39, FL
There is a common thread in the teachings which predominate the signs and wonders movement today. It has to do with how to get God to do what we want Him to do. It has a theme of US being the center of the universe, and how to get God to service US. We should never deny miracle possibilities, or signs and wonders, as long as they point to Jesus: that is if they are all within God's will and unto HIS glory. These do not include such things as a "miracle service," "miracle road show," or attaching giving money to God's willingness to work miracles. It is about the power of the Holy Spirit which works in and through people who seek Him, and who surrender to Him. Those are the kinds of miracles God wants to do today. If Christian people would truly seek God for Himself, and open themselves up to Him, then God would be free to do miracles, for He could then trust us with them. We wouldn't turn them into a profit center, or a side show. The key is to real miracles is to get into personal business with Jesus Christ. Signs and wonders which point to Jesus will completely agree with Scripture, because Scripture points to Jesus. They are of God. But signs and wonders which are clothed in false teaching, used to raise money, and which lead people away from Christ, are not of God. And the source from which they come is too terrible to contemplate. George Cancilla
|Posted On: 07/25/08 03:26:27 PM
||Age 61, MO
How is one unbiblical and the other biblical?
It is not enough to simply assert that the Jones/Bentley experience is false or satanic when compared to Paul's account. The fact that the two experiences are different is irrelevant. I'm not saying that the Jones/Bentley experience IS legitimate, because I don't know. The author, however, apparently does know, but does not tell us how.
|Posted On: 07/25/08 09:10:05 AM
||Age 49, MT