At the onset, let me wish all our readers a blessed 2018.
Are you a counterfeit Christian or the real deal?
I don’t usually carry cash. But on this day, I used a crisp $100 bill to pay for some new shoes. As I handed the bill to the cashier, she grabbed a pen. I was somewhat intrigued. Then, she ran the pen across the bill. Now I was puzzled. So, I asked her the purpose of marking up my crisp bills. Come to find out, this is standard procedure for $100 bills. The marker is designed to spot counterfeit bills.
Why would the cashier be concerned about this? The answer is obvious, right? Counterfeit money has no value. Maybe it can pose as authentic for a period of time, but eventually, someone is going to buy one of those markers and expose the lie.
And whether you intentionally use a counterfeit bill is irrelevant. If the marker reveals that you tried to pay with fake money, you will lose a $100, at best, and lose a day of freedom in jail, at worst.
To be fair, I don’t believe most Christians intentionally pose as fakes. They have either been handed a counterfeit Jesus or drifted away from the radical life Jesus calls his followers to imitate. With that said, I think every Christian can use this post to work on their heart.
Eight Signs of a counterfeit Christian
You feel more guilty for missing church than hurting your neighbor.
You believe the Bible/Denominational Doctrines is more important than Jesus.
You believe in the exalted position of the Clergy over you as a member of God’s Church
You wonder how close you can get to sin without actually sinning.
You believe it’s OK to hold a grudge against someone if he or she hurt you bad enough.
You believe real Christians would never engage real sinners.
You believe God rests in a building, not in a group of people.
You think Christian maturity is more about how much you know than what you do.
Testimony of Brother Sony on his journey “Out of Counterfeit Christianity“
As Christendom is celebrating the 500th Anniversary of Martin Luther’s reformation which led to the Pentecostal movements in early 19’s, this year God has started one more reformation in our lives and helped us to move forward.
I am based in UAE and was a TPM believer for 15 years. I am from a Syrian orthodox background. I was privileged to be saved in 1997 in another Pentecostal church and then later joined TPM in 2003. I used to admire the dedication of these saints and the TPM church system. I became a part of the church ministry and got involved in Sunday school and translation ministry. I thought there is no other doctrine or ministry better than ours. But our perception got changed this year with the issues happened here. Further, I came to know from different sources on serious issues and to our surprise, we realized these are covered up subtly. I am not writing this just for the sake of criticizing, but we should admit it happened and don’t be blind to it. I don’t want to go into detail on those incidents.
When the intensity of these issues was increasing, I was led to relook into the doctrinal part and church system. That is when I came to realize, why it is not getting exposed and why they are afraid to speak up. We realized that people are scared to talk since there is a fear divine retribution which was created in the minds of people from childhood. The undercurrent of this fear factor is universally accepted but nobody had the courage to bell the cat. The mechanism to have this done was done very subtly by focusing & exalting in the name of the consecrated ministry and imbibing it in all their study books and Sunday school syllabus.
When I joined TPM, I had doubts about certain doctrines, I tried to clear this doubts with some TPM books ( when I say that, it means it can’t be proved just by scriptural reference, need further twisting or need a thick TPM lens to understand it). Earlier I thought there was no other doctrine or fellowship better than TPM. But our perception got changed and we understood that there is something beyond that which we can understand from Word of God, with an open mind. I challenge all truth seekers either in TPM or any groups to please try to read and understand Word of God without any denominational lens. As we read about Bereans in Acts 17:11, let us please examine scriptures daily whether those things were so.
Here are few things I disagreed with TPM,
- Mandatory rule of celibacy for ministers
- divine healing as part of salvation (7 steps to Salvation),
- Zion, 144000 (consecrated servants),
- hierarchical order like the chief pastor, center pastor, .. etc.
- Order of Melchizedek,
- TPM servants as priests who are only ones qualified to receive tithe.
- Faith home combined male/female living in a monastery set up.
I can’t agree that apostles are only in TPM and celibacy is mandatory for an apostleship. If TPM established this doctrine, does it mean that there are no other apostles until 1923 when TPM church was founded? What about Godly men of 15-19th century’s. John Wesley, Martin Luther, Watchman Nee, DL Moody, George white field etc. So these great men who brought reformation and led to pentecostal beginning are not qualified to sit with TPM servants in the top place (zion) reserved in eternity?
I found there is no scriptural validity on these doctrines rather than a mix of truth combined with human laws and regulations or may be so-called divine revelations.
As we were seeking guidance from God to show us the way forward, in one of the meeting we got confirmation based on the word that ‘ you shall know the truth and truth shall set you free’’. That was our last meeting and we were free indeed now from a big system and free in Christ now. We left TPM two months back and God has placed us in a small fellowship were we are happy and thanks to Lord for leading us to a truthful teaching of Word of God and be a part of a new spiritual family.
It’s by Lord’s grace we are standing until now and give all glory and praise to Him.
Wish you all happy and blessed New year 2018.