Faith, Fraud, and Optimism

July 21, 2008

Recently in the Signs and Wonders movement someone planted gemstones in a meeting to create the impression that they came from the Spirit.

That is fraud, and God bless the leaders of that move who were incensed over it and took action.

Fraud is attempting to deceive others for your own gain.

I personally find such fraud to be very rare in the Kingdom (there are some notable and well-documented exceptions), and may there be none of it. 

I have been shown no evidence whatsoever of fraud at Lakeland.   (Someone called in a hoax resurrection report – that was fraud, but it was not by the people who are leading and staffing this outpouring, but rather by its opponents.)

Then there is Faith.

There is a lot of faith at Lakeland. 

Faith is acting on the basis of revelation.  It is acting with conviction based on what has been revealed to us in the Spirit or what we read in the scripture.

Of course what is revealed in the Spirit must not contradict scripture, and what is read in the scripture may be (it does not have to be in order to be acted on!) illuminated by the Spirit.

Certainly there is a lot of faith at work at Lakeland.  May there be even more!

Optimism is a little different.

Optimism is sincerely expecting that good things will happen.  Pondering those things.  Looking forward to them.  I believe the scripture endorses this.  It is not a sin.

Even the OT prophets who saw trouble coming almost always went on to say that in the long run, the earth would be filled with glory and the Lord would reign from Zion.

There is a lot of optimism at Lakeland.  May there be even more!

Another breed of optimism – we could call it relational optimism – is believing the best about others. Also, not a sin.  In fact, it is more like a commandment!

There is a lot of believing the best about people that is surrounding what is happening at Lakeland.

May there be even more!

I choose to look at all the available evidence, and based on that evidence, accept the interpretation that portrays in the best possible light Todd Bentley, Stephen Strader, and the thousands serving at all levels to make this outpouring such a blessing.

After all, they are family.

Thanks and Godspeed to all of them. 

May we all be moved by this event to a greater level of Christian character, humility, and power.  And a greater and deeper love and respect for our whole family.

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2 Responses to “Faith, Fraud, and Optimism”

  1. Peter Kirk said

    Thanks for the bit about “believing the best about others”. It is sad that so many people are willing to believe the worst about Todd, even for example that because of some superficial resemblances now he is bound to go the same way as someone who became an open apostate, a communist, a murderer and then committed suicide – Jim Jones. Indeed someone has dedicated a whole blog to this comparison. (I won’t give a direct link but see here.) What can I say? I can’t say it is impossible that Todd, or me, or the blog writer himself will go astray like this. But our approach should surely be that of Hebrews 6:9.

  2. dancurant said

    Ditto, ditto, and ditto!

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