Marsha West
My response to "The Response" Gov. Rick Perry's call to prayer
By Marsha West
August 8, 2011

Having previously written a piece on The Response voicing my legitimate concerns over Gov. Rick Perry's August 6th prayer event that was held at Reliant Stadium, now that all is said and done I'll respond to what I watched via the live streaming on their website.

As the camera panned a sea of people with their arms outstretched to heaven, many of them with tear-stained faces singing praises to the God they love made my eyes well up and I was moved. There is something about that Name...

Christians go to big events expecting to hear a Christian band playing praise and worship music. It breaks down barriers, draws the crowd together and pulls them out of their chairs and onto their feet. The right kind of music puts people in a worshipful mood. Did you know that the steady beat in conjunction with word repetition...Jesus, Jesus, Jesus...can put individuals into an altered state of consciousness? But that's an article for another time.

The band played mostly contemporary music and also some old hymns. I knew the words so I sang along! Hearing the Name Above all Names booming through the air is a wonderful way to start the day.

For close to 3 hours I was glued to my computer screen. Quite honestly, I was both moved and infuriated.


I’ve stated before that I believe it’s good for Christian groups gathering together to fast and pray for America and to repent of our egregious sins against God. Praying is what Christians do. Through prayer and Bible reading we are able to connect with God. Because our nation is in dire straits we need to call on God for His help in putting our Humpty Dumpty nation back together again. We serve a loving, gracious God. We have the hope that our prayers will be answered.

I believe Gov. Perry's call for prayer and fasting was a good idea. Not many politicians would stick their necks out like he did. He got pummeled by the liberal press, even worse by the far-left loons. And he stood his ground.

Gov. Perry had invited 49 governors. Only Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback attended. He joined Gov. Perry on stage and said a brief prayer. Florida Gov. Rick Scott participated via a videotaped message. Texas Rep. Louis Gohmert was also there.

It warmed my heart to see thousands of Americans join together to pray, fast, weep and mourn for the country they love. Every ethnic background and all generations, from the very young to the very old, came up on stage to pray. Time and time again Scripture was cited. Some repented for the "shedding of innocent blood" of 50 million babies who have died as a result of Roe v. Wade. People prayed for our awesome military. They prayed for the state of Israel too.

The best part by far was hearing a multitude of voices lift up the precious Name of Jesus.


So, what went wrong? Gov. Perry made an unfortunate decision when he chose his leadership team.

"Apostle" Doug Stringer of the International House of Prayer (IHOP) cult hosted the event so he was on stage all day. Seeing Stringer in the limelight was my first clue that the American Family Association (AFA), the pro-family group that sponsored the event, had made the decision to ignore the pleading of Christians who urged them not to unite with false teachers. I was one who pleaded with them. (Read my piece here)

Doug Stringer seemed like the perfect choice to host the event. He's articulate, has a soothing voice, his prayers are fluid and heartfelt, and he demonstrated that he is more than capable of handling a microphone! From all appearances Doug is a "godly man" who has a passion for God. What I'm leading up to will no doubt shock some of you. This so-called apostle is up to his eyeballs in a cult. Any person who shares the beliefs of the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR), as Stringer does, is a false teacher. Anyone who shares the beliefs of the Word of Faith (WoF) movement is a false teacher. Anyone who stands on a platform with false teachers, as some of the most respected Christians in America did, ignores what God says in Scripture:

And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove (rebuke) them." (Eph 5:11)

In 2 Tim 3:5 Paul explains that some men have a form of godliness, but they deny the power of God. He admonishes Timothy to turn away from such men.

Gov. Perry and other politicians along with many in the Christian Right (CR) did not turn away from false teachers; instead they invited these men and women to break bread with them. CR leaders were warned that they were uniting with cultists, but instead of turning away they received them. And then they publically embraced them, even prayed with them.

Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.
(2 John 9-11) (Bold mine)


Let me give you the Cliff Notes version of the NAR's warped theology that is being introduced through the back door of many evangelical churches:

Advocates believe they are equal with Jesus Christ and have the same power that Jesus had.

They believe they receive extra-biblical revelations from God apart from Scripture and they are able to rewrite doctrine with "new understanding."

They are modern day prophets and apostles and claim that the biblical ministry of an apostle has been forgotten so God has called them to restore it.

They are "Super Apostles" second only to God.

They believe the church is a theocracy not a democracy and the government of the church must be under the leadership of restored "apostles."

They believe "all people, nations, and demonic principalities must submit to these so-called apostles and prophets, who will lead God's end-times army in establishing His kingdom on earth."

They believe that through the power of the Holy Spirit — who was the source of all of Jesus' power when He was here on earth — they can perform miracles even greater than Jesus performed because they have access to the same power source, the Holy Spirit.

They've been commanded by God to "take dominion" over certain spheres of influence. They call this the Seven Mountain mandate. These mountains of influence are (1) Arts and Entertainment; (2) Business/Economy; (3) Education; (4) Family; (5) Government; (6) Media; (7) Religion.

According to NAR czar C. Peter Wagner,

We can pray for all these mountains with power because we have that power that Jesus had and it's up to us to be in a place where we're open to release that power of the Holy Spirit so that His name will be know and that His kingdom will advance. (Online source)

Did you get that? Wagner believes born again Christians have the same power that Jesus had.

Do we...really?

No! First off, the Holy Spirit is a not a personal power source and God's people are not Energizer Bunnies! Secondly, the Holy Spirit cannot be manipulated. Thirdly, if we have the same power that Jesus had, why are true believers unable to walk on water? Why can't we stop a tornado in its tracks? Why are God's people unsuccessful at bringing our dead loved ones back to life? Jesus performed miracles with a wave of a hand. He also used words, but very few. "Lazarus," He commanded, "come forth!" Lazarus, who had been dead 4 days, instantly obeyed the Voice and came out of the tomb. (John 11:43) I for one would like to see Peter Wagner or Cindy Jacobs or Rick Joyner or Todd Bentley perform the same kinds of miracles Jesus did.

Listen to what Mark Vrankovich says about these people:

[T]hese Super Apostles do not follow Paul's example. They are rigorous self-promoters who see power and wealth as important goals. They demand that you cede (to yield typically by treaty) to their authority. Church members must sign "covenants" stating that they will obey the church leadership. Church leaders themselves must "submit" their lives to the Super Apostles. To not submit is to rebel against God's will and condemn you to a barren Christian life outside the protection of the Super Apostles magical "umbrella of authority." (Online source)

Calling them heretics does not qualify as an argument, which is the reason I cited a small portion of their heretical beliefs. (Read more about the NAR/Dominionism here)

What does the WoF movement believe? Faith is a force. Our words are the containers of our faith or fear. Through faith we can create our own reality. Pastor Gary Gilley explains that,

supporters of this movement believe that faith works like a mighty power or force. Through faith we can obtain anything we want — health, wealth, success, whatever. However, this force is only released through the spoken word. As we speak the words of faith, power is discharged to accomplish our desires. (Bold by author)

Later in his article Gilley says of faith teacher Kenneth Copeland,

Kenneth Copeland states the faith formula this way: "All it takes is 1) Seeing or visualizing whatever you need, whether physical or financial; 2) Staking your claim on Scripture; and 3) Speaking it into existence."


Paul Yonggi Cho, borrowing from the occult, has developed what he calls the "Law of Incubation." Here is how it works: "First make a clear-cut goal, then draw a mental picture, vivid and graphic, to visualize success. Then incubate it into reality, and finally speak it into existence through the creative power of the spoken word" (Online source)

As you can see, the NAR (Dominionist, Latter Rain, Manifest(ed) Sons of God) and the WoF (positive confession, name it and claim it) movements share many of the same beliefs. I don't have the space to go into IHOP. What's important to "get" is that it's an outright cult and some of its members including, as I said above, the very pleasant host Doug Stringer, were on Rick Perry's leadership team. Why? Only AFA, the group that sponsored the event and its founder Tim Wildmon, has the answer.


Knowing what you now know about what these people believe, does it make sense that Gov. Perry, the AFA, CR leaders, pastors, ministry leaders, politicians and Christian luminaries would have anything to do with these wolves? I use wolves because that's what the Bible calls false teachers. Wolves are ferocious creatures who stalk their prey before they pounce and devour it! This is how God views these people! They stalk and devour. They are cunning and crafty. This is why God's people are to avoid them like the plague.

Not long ago I wrote a piece on prayer titled Are You Praying to the Only True God? I'll close with this quote:

The scriptures speak of God the Holy Spirit residing within all who believe in the Son of God. The Spirit guides, instructs and empowers believers. (John 14:16-17) As well, the "Spirit of truth" confirms everything about Jesus. (John 15:26) The unregenerate (unsaved) person is not Spirit filled. God does not hear anyone's prayer unless it is put into words by the Holy Spirit. So if we want our prayers to be heard and answered we must pray to the right God.

"This is life eternal, that they might know thee, the only true God,
and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent"
(John 17:3).

Recommended Reading:
New Apostolic Reformation — On Solid Rock, links to articles
Word of Faith/Televangelists — On Solid Rock, links to articles
IHOP & the Latter Rain — Herescope
IHOP Enters Christian/Dominion Christian Right Politics — By Ken Silva

© Marsha West


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)


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