By Brannon S. Howse
In May 2012, Christianity Today featured a cover story about Heidi Baker, who, with her husband Rolland, operates a “ministry” in Mozambique. The subtitle of the article announced, “There are credible reports that Heidi Baker heals the deaf and raises the dead,” and the text goes on to explain:
"We are in the dusty village of Chiure, Mozambique…Heidi Baker, known worldwide for her healing miracles, spends a third of every year on the charismatic speaking circuit, where people routinely fall to the floor in unconscious bliss or shake and laugh uncontrollably. They come, enthralled, to hear of Baker’s miracles in places like Chiure."
The article reports that Baker “…claims, scores have risen from the dead, food has been multiplied the crippled and blind have been restored…”
Reading the CT story immediately brings to mind the question: Why don’t we have video documentation of the “scores” who have been raised from the dead? Certainly such scenes would be worthy of a few YouTube views. But perhaps it’s easier to perpetrate a falsehood in writing than it is on video. And why are these report always overseas in some third world country—away from scrutiny?
Christianity Today describes a time when Baker was sick and her husband, Rolland, visited:
"…the Toronto Airport Vineyard Christian Fellowship (now known as Catch the Fire), where the controversial Toronto Blessing revival of the mid-1990s had broken out. It was marked by ecstatic manifestations of the Holy Spirit, most notably “holy laughter.” Hearing his report, Heidi became convinced that she desperately needed to visit Toronto."
CT explains that “One night, she had a vision of Jesus in which she literally ate his flesh and drank his blood.” And “Heidi speaks of ministry flowing from ‘your secret place’ in a love experience with Jesus so potent it verges on the erotic.”
The article also reports that, back in Mozambique: “Heidi prophesied to two of the pastors that they would raise people from the dead. Soon there were reports of a district official rising from her deathbed after two hours of prayer.” The article further reports “Scholar McClymond describes Heidi as a ‘practical mystic, like Teresa of Avila.’”
“Mystic” is a good description of Heidi Baker, given that she does things like this:
[quote] On Tuesday and Thursday mornings, Heidi teaches local student pastors and visiting Westerners at the Harvest School in Pemba. They gather in a large, hillside shed, a concrete slab with a roof for shade. To face the heat, students wear shorts or loose-fitting skirts, T-shirts, and flip-flops. They sit on the floor or stretch out as a guitarist leads in the ultimate worship song of three chords, four words, repeated 50 times. “Welcome in this place,” words addressed to Jesus, are repeated without variation at least 200 times, lasting for 30 minutes. Some students kneel with eyes closed and hands lifted high, swaying themselves into a trance. [end quote]
Can you say, “Mantra”? If you study transcendental meditation, or contemplative prayer, this is the technique used to enter into a “trance” or altered state of consciousness. Sometimes mystics simply go into the silence. The Bible in Matthew 6:7, however, specifically commands against repetitive babbling: “And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.”
"slips in behind the guitarist, placing herself prone on the floor, her arms outstretched. Several women gather to lie beside her, massaging her and praying. She does not move as the song endlessly repeats. Then, slowly, she raises herself to her knees and leads a continuation of the music, improvising words in a strong, deep voice."
Christianity Today mentions the New Apostolic Reformation but tries not to connect Baker to the NAR. Baker, though, works with many prominent NAR personalities, and she is a co-author of Reformers Pledge with Cindy Jacobs, C. Peter Wagner, Bill Johnson, James Goll, Lance Wallnau, John Arnott, Chuck Pierce, Lou Engle, and Jim Garlow. Baker and her husband Rolland are also listed as part of Revival Alliance which is made up of NAR proponents such as Bill and Beni Johnson, Che and Sue Ahn, Randy and DeAnne Clark, Georgian and Winnie Banov, and John and Carol Arnott.
Sadly, in May 2012 it was not just Christianity Today bringing Heidi Baker to the attention of Christians but also groups like the American Family Association and American Family Radio Network. AFR’s website posted a May 22, 2012 interview between Tim Wildmon, President of the American Family Association and AFR, and Heidi Baker. True Christians should grieve at how self-professing groups and individuals are helping to bring false teaching into the mainstream—whether they know it or not.
I have stated many times that New Agers, the New Apostolic Reformation, neo-evangelicals, the New Religious Right, and The Emergent Church are merging. For example, the “Flame of Love Project” is described on the University of Akon website as:
"…a four-year collaborative effort by researchers at the University of Akron and The Institute for Research on Unlimited Love, funded by the John Templeton Foundation, that will provide the scientific and theological foundation for a new interdisciplinary field of study; the science of Godly love."
John Templeton, as you’ll recall, wanted to establish a world religion “about God that doesn’t rely on ancient revelations or scripture.” Under the heading “Exemplar Biosketches,” the Flame of Love website lists those involved in the project, including such New Apostolic personalities as:
● Che Ahn
● Sue Ahn
● John Arnott
● Carol Arnott
● Heidi Baker
● Jay Bakker (son of Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker)
● Bill Johnson
● Peter Wagner.
Under “Social Justice Ministries,” you’ll find Emergent Church folks like Jim Wallis, Shane Claiborne (who did a year’s internship with Bill Hybels at Willow Creek), and Tony, Peggy, and Bart Campolo. Ironically, with respect to the “Flame of Love,” the most loving thing we can do is point out those who are promoting false teaching and false teachers so we can defend the Gospel and see people spared from the flames of an eternal hell.
Copyright 2012 ©Brannon Howse. This content is for Situation Room members and is not to be duplicated in any form or uploaded to other websites without the express written permission of Brannon Howse or his legally authorized representative.