but every man did that which was right in his own eyes. (Judges 17:6)

Contemplative Spirituality Has Slithered Right Into The Mainstream Of Evangelicalism

Over at the fellow online apologetics and discernment ministry Slice of Laodicea the other day Ingrid Schuleter further highlighted mainstream evangelicalism’s embrace of corrupt Contemplative Spirituality/Mysticism (CSM) ala Living Spiritual Teacher and Quaker mystic Richard Foster and his spiritual twin Dallas Willard:

Christianity Today Online is featuring what amounts to a promotional piece on “spiritual directors” that caught my attention. The article introduces the practice of using spiritual directors to evangelicals, most of whom have never heard of them. The piece details the author, Alice Fryling’s, warm and positive experiences with the spiritual director she encountered in a mainline church near the University of Wisconsin many years ago.

At first glance, who would argue with a ministry that supposedly puts people in touch with hearing and seeing God in their lives? But looking at it all a little more closely, problems emerge… (Online source)

Ingrid is dead-on-target that “problems emerge”; and frankly, this is actually an understatement. Take for example the following from a report at Christian Post:

The highest legislative authority of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) will consider lifting a ban on gay and lesbian clergy who are in lifelong, monogamous relationships as it gathers this week for its biennial gathering… Like a number of mainline denominations, ELCA has been wracked by issues regarding homosexuality, which has become one of the most hotly debated issues in today’s society and in the Church… (Online source)

There we can see what practices of CSM have done, and are right now still doing, to the nearly dead mainline “Protestant” denominations. Yeah, many say, but it’ll be different this time; no, it won’t. Apprising Ministries has been attempting, in pieces like Gay Marriage: Backlash Against Anglican Leader Expected, to alert those who at least have some desire to know about impending dangerws directly related to the practice of this spurious CSM masquerading as Spiritual Formation that about to detonated of the Devil within the heart of evangelicalism.

In this regard AM has long been warning; and a glaring example would be the very dark and threatening same-sex storm that is right now approaching hurricane force, and which is currently only slightly off the coast of the mainstream evangelical community. You need to realize that the egregiously ecumenical Emerging Church aka Emergent Church—morphing into Emergence Christianity—(EC) is right now working to make affirming homosexuality an issue within your own mainstream evangelical church.

I advise you to make the time to check this out for yourself; follow the links I’ve been providing you, test what you see by Scripture. I’ve said it before, mainstream evangelicalism is seemingly completely bereft of leaders with the discerment—and the courage—to confront a rapidly growing gay lobby, which arrived within its walls via the Trojan Horse of the EC. And the fact is, at the outskirts of the EC are self-described outlaw preachers growing up as a twisted gang around “gay affirming pastor” Jay Bakker.

My position happens to be that the EC is watching people like Bakker and “queer inclusive” ELCA “pastor” Nadia Bolz-Weber as they continue growing in stature and then create bridges into mainstream evangelicalism on behalf of those more closely aligned to the EC, such as Tony Jones and his quasi-universalist pastor Doug Pagitt before the EC comes out of the closet itself. As an example I offer a recent sermon by Bakker where he talks about being taken into the home of Brian McLaren and refers to his friend Tony Jones. Along these same lines we also note that Jones/Pagitt have included the “professional f**k-up” Bolz-Weber among the speakers at their upcoming Christianity 21 Conference.

The Same Stupid Practices Will Produce The Same Stupid Results

This all now brings us back around to the practice of CSM, which is something virtually all of the people mentioned above have in common. The heart of CSM is that one is allegedly listening to God with their own “heart” i.e their highly subjective feelings/experience. The spiritually deadly problem with this practice, which as Lectio Divina quite literally formed the basis of the antibiblical monastic traditions of apostate Roman Catholicism, is that practitioners of CSM then interpret Holy Scripture by their existential (means: experience) feelings.

Here’s the bottom line: This CSM, which is performed while in an altered state of consciousness, is not only a recipe for spiritual deception and disaster it would eventually so disgust God that He would raise up His Church Reformers. It needs to be remembered that many of these brave men, making their stand upon the rock of the Bible, were brutally murdered by the very people practicing this CSM espoused by such Counter Reformation figures Ignatius of Loyola—founder of the spiritual Gestapo unit known as the Jesuits.

In closing this for now, let’s see if we can figure this out this mystery together, ok. CSM, with its core practice of “meditation” aka Contemplative/Centering Prayer (CCP), actually originated with alleged “Christian” hermits—living the antibiblical lifestyle after which Rome would model her monastic systems—after secluding themselves away in the Eastern desert. John Cassian, the father of semi-pelagianism, then brings this wrong approach to the Christian life and proper spirituality (e.g. see—John 20:21) to the West.

Then, as we discussed above, this CSM would then fester and flower in those monastic traditions of the Roman Catholic Church. Tragically, Foster et al have now resurrected within mainstream evangelicalism (since when were Quakers evangelical) the exact same lunacy in the Lord’s Name that once killed what’s become known as the Roman Catholic Church; and we note that it’s deadly poison is currently dripping into the mainline denominations, where it’s—right now—ripping them apart. 

As we consider the fact that Richard Foster Is Forming Protestant Southern Baptist Convention Spirituality, the question for the thinking person would be: Do you seriously think that God is pleased that those who are supposedly aligned with said Protestant Reformers are now embracing this so-called “prayer” [read: transcendental meditation-lite] of CCP? If so; to quote the late Dr. Walter Martin, a renowned defender of what he so often called the hostoric orthodox Christian faith, “You seriously need to have your spiritual head examined.” 

See also:






Pastor Bob DeWaay – Contemporary Christian Divination: The False Claims of Christian Mystics

Dr. Gary Gilley – Mysticism: Part 3 Contemplative Prayer, The Heart of Mysticism