THE FINAL QUEST by Rick Joyner
Book review written by Steve Mitchell, Jeff Smith and Mike Oppenheimer
As I read this book carefully it became increasingly hard to be open to believe this mans message came from Jesus himself. I found myself growing more and more suspicious, as I carefully put what was said alongside the Holy Word of God that we are to hold as true. Finding myself 3/4 of the way through I was a moved to tears for those who would find this as believable, because they would then be absorbing a whole different doctrine of the savior and scenario of the end times. I know there will be many who will be upset with my conclusions on what is being said, but I must add my voice to others that are concerned. If he had claimed this as a fiction book I would have had no problem with it, but he does not. Joyner is actually claiming this as a revelation from the Spirit through first a dream then visions and prophetic experiences.(p.7). Visions and dreams are not like this where one converses back and forth. These sound more like an out of body experience, as well as going into the forbidden area of speaking with the dead (Duet. 18). It is my conclusion because of what he proposed as truth is in fact another competitor to the gospel and the Bible. I do not say this lightly but will in fact prove it not from my perspective but from Gods, who is the author of all true revelation.
This is not the first book review, there are a few others that have been done and were excellent. Anything I write I hope will enhance what has already been covered. Yet there are some areas that may be necessary to cover that were not. My goal is to look at what Joyner says carefully with his quotes and then see what Scripture has already said about what he is teaching. I realize this may lengthen this project but I do not think too little can be said on what was written.
What I will consistently point out is extra biblical revelation and his accusing the brethren of failure and faults, as well as his important role as a hero in his vision. We will look what he says and what is really going on. I will have my comments added as well as xtra and non- Biblical teaching to point out personal revelation. I hope by the time we are done you will see he has given more that is not in the Bible, than is. It does not enhance Scripture but enchants the reader! The review is done in order of his book this way we cannot be accused of taking this out of the written context.
How I Received The Vision
Joyner says One of the most common questions that I receive about this vision concerns how I received it. He explains what he mean by visions and prophetic experiences.
p.8 Prophetic experiences as I call them are numerous and diverse. They include all of the primary ways in which the Lord has spoken to His people in the Scriptures. Because the Lord is the same today as He was yesterday, He has never ceased to relate to His people in the same ways, and these experiences continue to be found throughout church history. As the apostle Peter explained in his sermon recorded in Acts Chapter Two, dreams, visions and prophecy are primary signs of the last days, and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. As we are obviously getting closer to the end of this age, these are becoming increasingly common in our time.
comment:I believe he is correct in that dreams, visions and prophecy are increasing in our time. The Bible warns of an increase in the end of prophets and miracles that are not from God but instead from the enemy. Mt.7:15, 24:5,11,24; 2 Thess.2:9; Acts.20:31;1 Jn.4:1; 2 Pt.2:1. All these are warnings from the true prophets who wrote the Scripture and are not to be ignored. He is wrong in that the Lord does not change his ways to relate to his people. Heb.1. While it does say that God will pour out his spirit on all flesh in Acts 2, where young men see visions, old men dream and maid servants prophecy. One needs to see what is meant by this. Who are the recipients and where does it take place, what is the purpose. We find it is a repeat of the first Pentecost that began the church by saving those in Israel. ( for more on this go to the latter rain)
He explains they are more common now to accomplish our purposes in these times. It is also true that Satan, who unfortunately knows the Scriptures better than many Christians, also understands the importance of prophetic revelation in God's relationship to His people, and he is therefore pouring out his own counterfeit gifts in great measure to those who serve him. However, there would be no counterfeit if there was not a genuine reality, just as there are no counterfeit three dollar bills because there are no real ones.
comment:the facts that there is a devil and he knows the scriptures as Joyner puts it better than many Christians is concerning. The Bible teaches that one cannot understand Gods word without the Holy Spirit 2 Cor. 2:10-14. Certainly no demon much less the head of them can understand the plans of God better than a Christian. Would Satan would be concerned about is the prophetic revelation in the Scripture that would fulfill his demise? Of course, he has an invested interest in all this.
Not all has to be a counterfeit outpouring. Satan is an inventor as well and can give something totally new as he does in other religions and spiritual systems..
Joyner seems to think it is not possible to be deceived. But due to our own human susceptibility to being deceived that even a self proclaimed end time prophet like Joyner could be hearing from a counterfeit, a cleverly disguised demonic source of revelation. So there is a danger to all. How will we know? By testing the final Quest to see if Joyner is hearing from the authentic spiritual source or a false one.
p.9 Soon after I became a Christian in 1972, 1 read this passage in Acts Two and understood that if these were the end times it was important to understand these ways that the Lord would be speaking to us. I do not remember praying to have the experiences myself at first, but I did begin to have them, which gave me even more impetus for understanding them.
comment:Here Joyner admits his propensity and seeking after what he misunderstood for the last days, this has shaped his theology. As he later states that he had prayed for 25 years to be caught up to the third heaven just like the apostle Paul (pp. 44-45). He writes the lord began to give him a dream in 1995 that was first published in condensed form in The Morning Star Journal Vol.5 No.2-4 1995, 1996 the hordes of hell are marching parts III & III)Yet, if this had been Joyner's prayer for 25 years, his conversion would have had to have been pushed back to 1970 or before which certainly brings to question his memory not only of his experiences but the time of his conversion.
From what I have read there would be no testing of his experiences but a reckless trust that it was all from the Lord of the Scriptures.
There are many levels of prophetic revelation. The beginning levels include prophetic impressions. These are genuine revelations. They can be extraordinarily specific and accurate when interpreted by those who are experienced and sensitive to them. However, it is on this level that our revelations can be affected by our own feelings, prejudices, and doctrines. I have therefore resolved not to use such expressions as thus saith the Lord with any revelations that come on this level
comment: A Danger -of prophetic impressions. Where does he get this idea of the different levels of prophetic revelation? Joyner states most of the visions came on what he deems the 4th level (trance) but doesn't know how this knowledge came to him.
How can these impressions ... be extraordinarily specific and accurate when interpreted by those who are experienced and sensitive to them at any time? If in the same paragraph Joyner admits they can be affected by our own feelings, prejudices, and doctrines. (Which can be applied to Joyner as well.) These two statements seem to cancel out each other as far as establishing any kind of trustworthiness to the revelations received on this level. Can you see the apostles saying such a thing in their visions or prophecies? How do we know which parts of the Final Quest were impressions and which are not since he does not tell us. From this perspective we are left to subjectively accept or reject whatever we feel we should. How then can we arrive at the truth in any of the stories?
There is a reason for this position by refraining from thus saith the Lord to some of the revelations in the book. Joyner covers his own tail and is now able to excuse any false statement or heresy that one would find as his fault in interpretation or memory. If it is up to us he can say that is what it is too you, but it may not be to another. Although he claims to receive this information from God, he appears reluctant to trust that he is receiving it correctly. In short Joyner himself is not confident in the complete accuracy of the content in the final Quest nor can vouch for which parts are accurate. So why should we? Why should we be asked to believe the trustworthiness of these revelations as from a true Godly source if Joyner admittingly says there is chaff: (p.14) amidst wheat. What if three people read the book and what one considers as wheat another may consider as chaff, and what of the third person who may disagree with both? We are left to our own subjective interpretations of his prophetic insight. I ask you can we do this for the Bible as well? The Scripture says no prophecy is of a private interpretation, therefore if his writing is genuinely prophetic it cannot be left to various opinions on its meaning.
Visions can come on the impression level, also. They are gentle and must be seen with the eyes of our heart. These, too, can be very specific and accurate, especially when received and/or interpreted by those who are experienced. The more the eyes of our hearts are opened, as Paul prayed in Ephesians 1:18, the more powerful and useful these can be.
Comment: Must be seen with the eyes of our heart. The Bible says the opposite Eph.1:18 is about the love of God not what Joyner's is writing about in his visions. His is x-tra biblical doctrines, they add to what the Bible does not include. Eyes of the heart is a recurrent phrase throughout his book.
Can we find a biblical precedent for this idea of being interpreted by the experienced? How experienced were the OT prophets who received visions from God? Was not the role of interpreting heavenly visions God himself? Daniel interpreted the visions without any experience. How? he states Dan 2:28 But there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will be in the latter days. None of the prophets had experience, as we will see there is an underlying meaning to what he is conveying.
The next level of revelation is a conscious sense of the presence of the Lord, or the anointing of the Holy Spirit, which gives special illumination to our minds. This often comes when I am writing, or speaking, and it gives me much greater confidence in the importance or accuracy of what I am saying. I believe that this was probably experienced by the apostles as they wrote the New Testament epistles. This will give us great confidence, but it is still a level where we can still be influenced by our prejudices, doctrines, etc.
Comment: Next level- the apostles did not have greater confidence, but absolute confidence (assurance that what they wrote is accurate. They had nothing to say about different levels. Joyners position implies the 60, 70, 90% accuracy from practice not only is it to be accurate but biblically orthodox as well. Since many prophets who are in the new age have accuracy but will redefine or twist the Scripture. One of the indications of where Mr. Joyner is spiritually is his past accuracy. What past statements in journals or sermons were said that would indicate a good track record of being scripturally accurate. In this we find his theology from a certain bent of which he does admit.
Here is how Joyner defines it Bob [Jones] was told that the general level of prophetic revelation in the church was about 65% accurate at this time. Some are only about 10% accurate, a very few of the most mature prophets are approaching 85 to 95% accuracy. Prophecy is increasing in purity, but there is still a long way to go for those who walk in this ministry. (Rick Joyner (1990, Morning Star Prophetic Newsletter (Charlotte, NC; Morning Star Publications, Vol. II, No. 5, Oct.-Nov., 1989), p. 4.
If their prophetic gifts work on the 80% level of accuracy they want diplomatic spiritual immunity. Rick Joyner says, it seems inevitable that the self-appointed 'heresy hunters' will always do more damage to the church than the actual heresies. (The MORNING STAR, Vol. III, No. 5, Sept/Oct. 1990) Imagine not only saying this but believing it. Now we know where he is coming from and why he can be confident to say the things he sees are from the Lord despite it falling short.
What does Scripture have to say
Bible: 2 Pet 1:21 for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. This means 100% accuracy despite any shortcomings of the vessel. Prophetic failure of fulfillment is excused today because prophets are growing during the process of learning to become more proficient, and so errors are accepted. Imagine Isaiah or Jeremiah saying, I could be wrong, but I'm improving with time!
The visions contained in this book all began with a dream. Some of it came under a very intense sense of the presence of the Lord, but the overwhelming majority was received in some level of a trance. Most of it came on the level where I was still conscious of my surroundings, and could even interact with them, such as answering the phone. When they were interrupted, or when things got so intense that I would have to get up and walk around, when I sat back down I would immediately be right back where I had left off. Once the experience became so intense that I actually got up and left the mountain cabin where I go to seek the Lord, and drove home. Over a week later I returned and almost immediately I was right back where I left off. p.11
Comment:This he states went on for months as it is turned on and off like a TV series. I cannot recall any prophet that had this kind of communication. God would finish what was being presented and then give further insight.
p.12 I must state emphatically that I do not believe that any kind of prophetic revelation is for the purpose of establishing doctrine. We have the Scriptures for that.
We, also, see such revelations being given for illuminating doctrine that is taught in the Scripture, but is not clearly seen. The example of Peter's trance is one that illuminated both the will of the Lord, and sound biblical teaching that the Scriptures were very clear about (the Gentiles being able to receive the gospel), but which had not yet been understood by the church.
Comment: This is interesting in that his whole vision is either changing doctrine from his own taught perspective or adding to it. What about Peter whose trance was certainly teaching him doctrine, it wasn't just illuminating it. What was once forbidden under the law he was now able to eat, besides his understanding that now gentiles become part of the body Eph.2:, isn't this doctrine?
The visions in this book do contain some strategic revelations, and they also illuminated some biblical doctrines that I had honestly not seen before, but now see quite clearly. However, most of the doctrine that was illuminated to me in these experiences I have known and taught for years, even though I cannot say that I have lived them all very well. Many times I thought about the warning that Paul gave to Timothy to pay attention to his own teachings. Many of the words spoken to me in these experiences I have, myself, taught many times.
Remember Joyner already admits on p.9 they can be affected by our own feelings, prejudices, and doctrines. Now he admits most of the doctrine that was illuminated to me in these experiences I have known and taught for years, So now he falls into the category of his own previous doctrinal view to cloud his understanding. This means nothing can be trusted even if some of it were accurate. But the real concern is that he now interprets the Bible by his vision. It was this kind of experience that started the Mormon Church by a man named Joseph Smith who came to the conclusion that what Christianity was teaching was unacceptable. Joyner does the same in a more subtle manner by chastising the Church that holds to the old biblical traditions and will not move along with him and his fellows into the new.
p.14 I was encouraged by some to write this as an allegory, in third person like The Pilgrim's Progress, but I decided against it for several reasons. First, I feel that some would have taken this to be the result of my own creativity, and that would have been wrong. I would like to be this creative, but I am not. Another reason was that I felt that I could be much more accurate if I related it just like I received it, and I did my best to convey these experiences just the way that they were received. However, I consider my memory of details to be one of my greatest weaknesses. At times I have questioned my own memory for certain details in this vision, and I think that you should therefore have the liberty to do the same.
14:26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name,
He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I
said to you. If the Holy Spirit is involved in giving revelation he will
not miss in being accurate.
Comment: Having a bad memory is not a sin, it may be an unfortunate quality some of us possess. Joyner freely confesses that he has this problem as it being his greatest weakness and that we should question the details. So how can we trust anything said since he does not know which parts are lacking?
My contention is with the fact that, IF this collection of prophetic revelations are truly from the infallible Holy Spirit who is God and intended for our edification and relaying of prophetic truth to Gods people, THEN Mr. Joyners faulty memory should not play a factor in the accuracy of this book. Could not the Holy Spirit override such a flaw as bad memory if he truly intended to reveal truth of this alleged import? Certainly the apostles did not have perfect memories yet they were able to perfectly communicate the revelation in Scripture. This sounds more like an excuse for any false content that may be presented in the book (of which there is much)
He implies the Holy Spirit gave him this vision but admits it is not trustworthy. The story is not biblical in some places and it is extra biblical in much of its writing. what is one to think of this. Are we to ignore Gods clear revelation of testing it or do what Christ himself said to do personally and through the apostles.
Only the Scriptures deserve to be considered infallible. As you read he then prays the Holy Spirit would lead you into the truth, and separate any chaff that may be present from the wheat. This is what Jesus said the spirit would do for his word. If the final Quest is to be in any way considered from God there must be NO chaff. It needs to all conform to Scripture 100%. If this man was hearing from the Holy Spirit he should have been guided into all truth in the revelation, in the writing as well as the recording of this document. He readily admits this document is not on par with holy Writ but he claims is a compilation of revelatory truth from the same source as Scripture, God the Holy Spirit. Then it must bear the same accuracy if it is to be deemed credible. Joyners book needs to be distinguished from other books or commentaries in that it is proposed by the author as being a collection of truths revealed in a supernatural way and not merely the conjectures or insights of a person studying scripture who subsequently wrote a book or commentary. These are claimed to be revelations from the almighty God who can only be the author of truth. Again who decides what is wheat or chaff? You the reader do, so there is no objective way of sureness to be found. since I may accept one portion that you may not and vice versa. None of this have the opportunity to do the same with Scripture.
The question everyone needs to ask, does this book stand up under scrutiny by submitting to the biblical test of Scripture? Or is the Bible under reformation by his visions.
These are some general examples of what he describes demons do A single demon of Bitterness could sow his poison into multitudes of people, even entire races or cultures. send what appeared to be bolts of electric slime that would hit and desensitize great masses of people. The most shocking part of this vision was that this horde was not riding on horses, but primarily on Christians! p.17
X-TRA BIBLICALone demon can infest whole culture which is basically an impossibility even if they are non corporeal beings. They are limited to be one place at a time. Everything is blamed on the demonic, discounting the fallen nature of man. Their purpose to preempt the coming move of God. While we cannot not discount demons affecting people, the main problem is that the church is not applying the word of God so we fall prey to the world the flesh and the devil. Yet we also become prey to every wind of doctrine, which from Joyners corner is blowing in hurricane force.
Joyner does say the Christians are captive and If the Christians had just used their weapons they could have easily freed themselves.
Joyner has no answer for this and he may just be part of the problem by having us focus on the demons instead of the Word. The Bible says if we stand firm in Christ, resist the devil he flees. No long battle and chasing after him or getting more troops to enter a battle to vanquish him. But then there would be no book!
Many of these believers were host to more than one demon, but one would obviously be in charge. The nature of the one in charge dictated which division it was marching in. Even though the divisions were all marching together, it also seemed that at the same time the entire army was on the verge of chaos. For example, the demons of hate, hated the other demons as much as they did the Christians.p.18
Comment: All this is setting up the scenario of a civil war inside the Church which according to him is going to be demon deceived Christians (the grays) against the Christians who are Spirit followers (blues). Jesus said Luke 11:17-18 Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and a house divided against a house falls. This sounds much similar to the civil war that was lead in heaven by Lucifer in his rebellion.
The BIBLE: Mt.12:25 If Satan also is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? Which is exactly what he is describing. Although he is careful to say the Demons are on the outside the Christian, the control is no different. Jealousy, hatred bitterness, accusations and other emotions are manifested all from demons. Scripture says they are from the fallen nature of man, our flesh Gal.5. this does not mean they can be manipulated in some way by our enemy but what he is doing is blaming it all on demons. He is demonizing a whole segment of the Church without any legitimacy biblically except by a dream and vision that may or may not be accurate (even by his own standards).
Non biblical: the sky was black with vultures named Depression. Occasionally these would land on the shoulders of a prisoner and would vomit on him. The vomit was Condemnation. p.20 He states he saw Christians picking up the enemy arrows and shooting them back. The demons easily dodged the arrows and let them hit the Christians. p.26 swarms of vultures would fly above us to vomit down on us, or to carry demons who would urinate or defecate upon the ledges, making them very slippery. p.28 Christians legs were bound by serpents. p.33
Comment: Since when do we use the enemies arrows which are not physical but fiery darts, in other words condemnation accusing us to God and making us have a guilty conscience. which is the very things his vision is communicating.
X-tra BiblicalChristians demonically bound are able to attack and killing one another with slander and accusation. We do not find this army described in Scripture.
In his previous book The Hordes of Hell Are Marching) However, this slime made the Christians feel so much better they easily believed that the demons were messengers of God, and they actually thought this slime was the anointing of the Holy Spirit.
Joyner takes no notice to speaking this way of the brethren? (Eph 4:29-32.)
p.19 It was clear that the power of the demons was rooted almost entirely in the power of deception, but they had deceived these Christians to the point where they could use them and they would think they were being used by God. He knew that a house divided cannot stand, and this army represented an attempt to bring such division to the church that she would completely fall from grace. It was apparent that the only way he could do this was to use Christians to war against their own brethren, and that is why almost everyone in the forward divisions were Christians, or at least professing Christians.
Comment: What he is describing those who are in an army as possibly false Christians. he states about a house falling if divided as Satan's strategy on the church but when it is happening to Satans kingdom it seems to have no affect. So this is logically contradictory. but there is something under the surface that seems to rising. this is his theology that those who speak out against prophetic revelations (such as his) are part of this army that brings division to the church.
p.23 Behind this army there was a trailing mob similar to the prisoners who followed the evil horde, but these were very different in nature. They seemed overly happy, as if intoxicated. They were playing games, singing songs, feasting and roaming about from one little camp to the next. This reminded me of Woodstock. Joyner concerned for this mob ' tried to raise my voice above the clamor to warn them that a battle was about to begin. Some gave me the peace sign and said they did not believe in war, and that the Lord would not let anything bad happen to them.
Comment: this reminds me of the Toronto blessing that Joyner and his patriot's endorse. you know, the ones that lay on the floor enjoying the blessing by being intoxicated on too much wine. The very ones Joyner holds to. He has been ineffective for them as well.
Then a messenger came up to me, gave me a trumpet and told me to blow it quickly. I did, and those who had on at least some of their armor immediately responded, snapping to attention. behind the army. As we looked at them all of our shields began to grow. p.23
Comment- Joyner now becomes an important part of the army In his vision Joyner sees himself at the head of a great army which he calls the army of the Lord. Joyner continues to appear, in all of his visions, as the central character (the leader) the army of the Lord In his vision Joyner sees himself at the head of a great army which he calls the army of the Lord. Joyner continues to appear, in all of his visions, as the central character (the leader) the army of the Lord In his vision Joyner sees himself at the head of a great army which he calls the army of the Lord. And the scenario for his view of the end times (Joel's army) is set up and the plot unfolds.
p.25Immediately three great angels named Faith, Hope and Love came and stood behind the army. As we looked at them all of our shields began to grow.
Non biblical: faith, hope and love are not angels but qualities from the Holy Spirit that exemplifies Christians. They continue with us for eternity. It was Gnosticism that had angels for qualities.
A great angel named Wisdom then appeared and directed us to fight from the mountain behind us.
p. 26 On the mountain there were ledges at different levels for as high as we could see. At each higher level the ledges became narrower, and more difficult to stand on. Each level was named for biblical truth. The lower levels were named after foundational truths such as Salvation, Sanctification, Prayer, Faith, etc., and the higher levels were named after deeper biblical truths. The higher we climbed, the larger both our shields and our swords grew, and fewer of the enemy arrows could reach our positions.comment: Shades of pilgrims progress. Is faith and prayer lower levels? Serious Scriptural doctrines are also treated in the allegory in a casual manner. For instance, when Christian warriors were captured they were led away to prison camps which were named after different doctrines of demons. These doctrines were never enumerated and it was not explained why they were assigned to prison camps or what lessons we should draw. This is a careless use of a term which is acutely relevant to the Church in the present age. In particular, the doctrine of salvation, which is Scriptures overriding purpose and part of Messiahs name ( -- God is salvation), is treated cavalierly. Wisdom (the angel which is his guide, he later says is Jesus) .
Joyner explains his climbing up The Holy Mountain, As he climbs to each new level, he learns new spiritual truths ( but not always biblical ones), and receives new weapons to help kill the demonic creatures.
At the top of the mountain is the garden of God and Jesus, but in order to get there one must first climb up the levels as soldiers fighting battles. Joyner describes these levels on a mountain he is climbing. He explains the order of these levels going up as Salvation p.51, Sanctification p.26, Thanksgiving and praise p.47. unity of the brethren p.27. Galatians 2:20 p.29, and patience p.33.The lower levels of truth which other Christians are content with are salvation, Sanctification, Prayer, Faith. The very things were are told to always have in Scripture, they are the focus of our Christian life and walk. Believing and walking in the Spirit for growth is NOT like the Masons: we do not work our way up by levels of initiation in order to grow and have our authority.
p.27 When we reached the level called The Unity of the Brethren, none of the enemy's arrows could reach us.
Soon my skills were good enough to shoot and hit the demons without hitting the Christians. I felt that if I kept going higher I could shoot far enough to hit the main leaders of the evil horde who stayed behind their army.
Comment:while the Bible does mention this joyner twists this to mean something it does not. I don't think anyone can now rest easy that Joyner has learned skill in his aiming and stopped hitting Christians. I think it just may be the opposite from all the demonic descriptions of Christians .
At each level there were arrows of Truth scattered about which I knew were left from those who had fallen from that position (many had fallen from each position). All of the arrows were named after the Truth of that level.
p.28 Since the enemy could not hit us on the higher levels with its arrows, swarms of vultures would fly above us to vomit down on us, or to carry demons who would urinate or defecate upon the ledges, making them very slippery.
Comment: Beside this being disgusting it is unbiblical and just downright ridiculous.
Our swords grew after we reached each level, but I almost left mine behind because I did not seem to need it at the higher levels. I almost casually decided to keep it, thinking that it must have been given to me for a reason. Then, because the ledge I was standing on was so narrow, and becoming so slippery, I drove the sword into the ground and tied myself to it while I shot at the enemy. The voice of the Lord then came to me, saying: You have used the wisdom that will enable you to keep climbing. Many have fallen because they did not use their sword properly to anchor themselves. No one else seemed to hear this voice, but many saw what I had done and did the same.
Comment:Joyner has become a leader in this war even though he admits he does not know what he is doing. Imagine having a vision with yourself in it and being the hero. are we to believe he is climbing levels and in a fierce battle he almost leaves his sword behind? All this stretches ones credulity.
His aim becomes better Soon we were hitting the demons with almost perfect accuracy. Rage ascended from the enemy army like fire and brimstone. I knew that the Christians trapped in that army were now feeling the brunt of that rage. Some became so enraged that they were now shooting at each other. Normally this would have been very encouraging, but those who suffered the most were the deceived Christians who were in the camp of the enemy.
The arrows of Truth would seldom penetrate the vultures, but they hurt them enough to drive them back.
Comment:Truth doesn't seem to be to powerful in his vision. One can only ask what is? The Bible describes Jesus as grace and truth revealed and the word as truth, that the truth sets one free (from falsehood). 2 Cor.10:3-6 our warfare is against false knowledge and we find our most powerful weapon is the word of God (truth). Eph.6:10-18 mentions it as our sword. As a matter of fact all the armor we are to have on and use daily is to Joyner the lower level.
p.29 ..on this level I caught up to Faith, Hope and Love, which before I had only been able to see from a distance. Here I was almost overpowered by their glory. ...When they touched my sword, great bolts of brilliant lightning began flashing from it. Love then said, Those who reach this level are entrusted with the powers of the age to come.
Comment:Really! . Here Joyner says he is bestowed power beyond anything given before. Nowhere does the Bible teach this. This phrase occurs only at Hebrews 6:5 is preceded by the phrase and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come.The powers of the age to come are reserved for the AGE TO COME. There is no level to climb literally or metaphorically.
The Galatians Two Twenty level ...We decided not to use the arrows of truth until we had destroyed all of the vultures, because the cloud of depression they created made the truth less effective.
Comment: If this is beginning to take on the life of fantasy you may be getting closer to reality than he is.
p.32 For a long time we continued killing the vultures and picking off the demons that were riding the Christians. We found that the arrows of different Truths would have greater impact on different demons. We knew that it was going to be a long battle, but we were not suffering any more casualties now, and we had continued to climb past the level of Patience.
p.33We shot arrows of Truth at the serpents, but they had little effect. We then tried the arrows of Hope, but without results.'
Comment: Once again truth has little affect on the enemy in Joyner's dream. Is this a subtle hint to what source this is from?
We passed levels of truth very fast. .... Faith, Hope and Love stayed right with us, but I had not noticed that we had left Wisdom far behind. It would be a long time before I would understand what a mistake this was. He would catch up to us on the top, but leaving him behind cost us a much quicker and easier victory over the evil horde.
Almost without warning we came to a level that opened up into a garden. It was the most beautiful place I had ever seen. Over the entrance to this garden was written, The Father's Unconditional Love. This entrance was so glorious and inviting that we just could not resist entering. As soon as I entered I saw a tree that I knew was the Tree of Life.
p.34 Then from an angel gaurding the tree called out, Those who make it to this level, who know the Father's love, can eat.
Bible says all who overcome can eat it is by faith we overcome
I did not realize how hungry I was. When I tasted the fruit, it was better than anything I had ever tasted, but it was, also, somehow familiar. It brought memories of sunshine, rain, beautiful fields, the sun setting over the ocean, but even more than that, of the people I loved. With every bite I loved everything and everyone more. Then my enemies started coming to mind, and I loved them, too. The feeling was soon greater than anything I had ever experienced, even the peace on Galatians Two Twenty when we had first reached that level. Then I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, This is now your daily bread. It shall never be withheld from you. You may eat as much and as often as you like. There is no end to My love.
Comment: Look what Joyner is saying, that he is previledged enough to eat from the tree of life in Paradise. he is allowed to eat of the tree of life, which doesn't make its appearance for other Christian believers until the New Jerusalem in Revelation 22:2. biblically if one eats from the tree of life they will never die. This becomes his daily bread a physical fruit while Jesus said it was his word. But the affect on him is like a mystical experience.
The Lord Jesus Himself then appeared right in out midst. He took the time to greet each one personally, congratulating us for reaching the top of the mountain. Then He said, I p.35 must now share with you what I shared with your brothers after My ascension--the message of My kingdom. The enemy's most powerful army has now been put to flight, but not destroyed. Now it is time for us to march forth with the gospel of My kingdom. The eagles have been released and will go with us. We will take arrows from every level, but I am your Sword, and I am your Captain. It is now time for the Sword of the Lord to be unsheathed.
X-tra biblical- if this is the message he shared after the ascension it is missing from the Scriptures even though he was with them 40 days. This sounds reminiscent to the Gnostic gospels content. Where does Jesus talk about eagles released or arrows taken from LEVELS this is all a concoction of Joyners mind. what was the sword that was growing if not the sword of the Lord. but the sword of the Lord is the word, it is the truth which seems to have little use up until now. On this page beautiful eagles with blinding glory do his bidding. The Lord Jesus appears and personally congratulates him for reaching the top of the mountain (pp. 35-36) .
What's wrong with the ancient truths do we really need new truths unrevealed in scripture by the new prophets? Jesus never used terms of marchin' and capturing and this is all from the bent of Joel's army. After Jesus resurrected the gospel of the kingdom was on the death burial and resurrection and there are no banners to be carried. From his own admission this is the day of the Lord so the church is here and not only that is going to march triumphant. This is latter rain dominionism.
p.35I then turned and saw that the entire army of the Lord was standing in that garden. There were men, women, and children from all races and nations, each carrying their banners which moved in the wind with perfect unity. I knew that nothing like this had been seen in the earth before. I knew that the enemy had many more armies, and fortresses throughout the earth, but none could stand before this great army. I said almost under my breath, This must be the day of the Lord. The whole host then answered in an awesome thunder, The day of the Lord of Hosts has come.
Xtra-biblicalJoynerıs focus is on a great human army, but Scripture emphasizes the execution of vengeance on the Day of the Lord not through a victorious human army not on earth but by the Lord Himself: the only army amassed on earth is those who fight against the Lord.
The day of the Lord described by Joyner has nothing in common with the
Day of the Lord in Scripture, which is a dark and fearful day, not a day of
celebration: this is prophecy and must be accurate for what he is claiming here
p.37 Joyner pondered his dream. Claiming certain events and conditions in the church paralleled the hordes from hell marching . I was then reminded of Abraham Lincoln. The only way that he could become the Emancipator, and preserve the Union, was to be willing to fight a Civil War. Fighting with the resolution not to compromise until the victory was complete. He also had to have the grace to fight the bloodiest war in our history without demonizing the enemy with propaganda.
comment: With that statement in mind, to fight the bloodiest war in our history without 'demonizing' the enemy with propaganda. Yet this Civil war, is described as the demons deceiving Christians defecating on them and all the rest of the expletives. Pride, Selfish Ambitions, Unrighteous Judgement, Jealousy ... Intimidation ... Treachery ... Accusation, Gossip, Slander, Faultfinding ... are a few of the descriptions as their actions.
Xtra-biblical- The prophecies in Scripture about the last days speak neither of a Civil war nor of a great revival. The unanimous testimony of the apostles and prophets is that in the last days of this age, Christendom (not The Church) shall be characterized by apostasy: false prophets and teachers, false brethren and false doctrines. He also implies that the church will triumph on earth, something which is contradicted by passages such as Matthew 24 which forecasts deception and terrible persecution (to those who claim Christ), not triumph, for the church prior to His return. We are nowhere told to expect things to get better but only worse. So much worse, in fact, that our Lord Jesus Christ, Himself, asked the question when I come will I find faith on the earth? In Luke 18: which strongly suggests that there will not be a victorious earthly church at that time, but few who have held to his teachings.
The Lord is now preparing a leadership that will be willing to fight a spiritual civil war in order to set men free. The main issue will be slavery versus freedom . The church will not be destroyed, but the institutions and doctrines that have kept men in spiritual slavery will be.
Comment: Scripture says he who the Son sets free is free indeed. Doctrines keep us in slavery? Actually the Bible which is filled with doctrines we are to obey because it keeps us on course. What he means by doctrine is not really explained but one can gather from his writings it is holding to the written word and proven historic interpretations. Joyner's belittling doctrine shows his animosity toward the truth from the very words of the one he calls his savior.
This is also unscriptural in that, although there will be unbelievers or
false believers intermingled among true ones in the visible church on earth,
Jesus makes it plain that these tares among the wheat will not be uprooted
until the end of the age when the Son of Man will send out angels to gather the
wheat into the barn and burn the tares in the fire (Matthew 13:40-41). It is the
angels, and not men, who will have the job of cleaning up the church!
There will still be struggles for women's rights, and to set the church free from other forms of racism and exploitation. However, in the midst of the coming spiritual civil war, Faith, Hope and Love, and the kingdom of God that they stand upon, will begin to be seen as they never have before. This will begin drawing all men to the kingdom. God's government is to be demonstrated as greater than any human government.
Comment:This passage suggests that the church will be an active force for the womenıs rights movement and for political liberation movements focusing on racism and economic exploitation. Is this politically correct Christianity? In the current climate this is wrong, since it is such movements as Feminist Theology in the seminaries which is actually destroying Scripture-based teaching. Furthermore, the Bible proclaims that God is no respecter of persons and that He looks past outward forms and circumstances and regards each child of God equally. Gal.3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. .
Joyner seems to attribute to the church what only Christ himself ruling on the earth can do.(Isa.9:6) Only when Jesus comes and installs his Government will this be accomplished. No one else can bring this about but the savior in the millennium (Mt.25). This is dominion teaching, kingdom now explanations, that have nothing to do with the true biblical scenario of the end.
I closed my eyes because the glory I was seeing with my heart was as great as what I was seeing with my physical eyes....then an angel said, Close your eyes again. When I did, I beheld the glory of the Lord. This was no small relief I knew that I just could not live without the glory now that I had experienced it.
Here again Joyner goes within to experience Gods glory. all the prophets speak of Gods glory outside themselves. The NT teaches Christ in you the hope of Glory
1Kings 8:11 So that the priests could not stand to minister because of the
cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of the LORD.
p.42 Then the angel Wisdom teaches Joyner, What you see with the eyes of your heart is more real than what you see with your physical eyes. I had myself made this statement many times, but how little I had walked in it! The angel continued, It was for this reason that the Lord told His first disciples that it was better for Him to go away so that the Holy Spirit could come. The Lord dwells within you. You have taught this many times, but now you must live it, for you have eaten of the tree of Life.
The Angel leads Joyner out of Paradise and he protests not wanting to leave. Looking surprised, the Angel took me by the shoulders and looked me in the eyes, that is when I recognized him as the Angel Wisdom. 'You never have to leave this garden, this garden is in your heart because the Creator Himself is within you.'
p.43 I then looked past him to the Tree of Life. I had a compulsion to grab all of the fruit that I could before leaving. Knowing my thoughts, Wisdom gently shook me. No. Even this fruit, gathered in fear, would go bad. This fruit and this tree are within you because He is in you. You must believe.
Comment: This supposed angel of God goes on to tell Joyner that the tree and its fruit dwells within him. Nowhere does Scripture teach this, but gnosticism does. like the divine spark of the gnostics. (The inner Christ which the new age promotes). After the Resurrection when Thomas doubted, Jesus did not tell him that the evidence did not matter he had only to see with the eyes of his heart; rather, He offered the evidence by telling Thomas to look at His hands and touch His side (John 20:27). The difference between Jewish beliefs and religions of the East (and some in the West) was that, say, Hindus believed that the physical was unimportant, maya, illusion, that needs to be transcended so that it would disappear, while the Jews believed in a physical resurrection. This statement of the angel was not a Jewish statement that Jesus would have made it is more like a statement made by someone who believed that only the spiritual realm, not the physical universe, was real. The physical fact of the Resurrection was all-important because, as Paul said, if Christ is not [really] risen, then our faith is futile and we are still dead in our sins (1 Cor 15:17).Paul points to those who were witnesses to the resurrection as an opportunity for those who question to ask. Luke tells of Jesus presenting Himself alive by many infallible proofs (Acts 1:3), a legal term referring to irrefutable evidence. Truth, and hence reality, and hence evidence of that reality, were important to Jesus and His disciples.
To see with the eyes of your heart only and ignore objective evidence including how a would-be prophet or apostle behaved or what he taught would be against Biblical injunctions to test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world (1 John 4:1). We are to search the Scriptures daily to see whether what they teach is so (Acts 17:11). But Joyner is encouraging people to look inside for the answers. The Bible says the heart is deceitfully wicked and who can know it. To point to inside a person as the garden in ones heart is not biblical. We do not pray toward inside us but toward heaven where Christ and the Father is. The Holy Spirit is the helper but He has not given us complete understanding, we still walk by faith. While the Bible does teach he has deposited his nature in us it never instructs us to look inside.
Non biblical-The tree of life is misused here. Scripture begins with the tree of life (Gen 2:9) and, at the climax of history, ends at the tree of life (Rev 22). In the age to come, the tree of life will be for those who persevered in their faith in this life, it is a reward for being victorious on earth: Rev. 2:7 To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
Non biblical: It will not be available until after a new heaven and a new earth are created and the New Jerusalem comes down (Rev 21). Yet Joyner who obviously implies has already overcome says he has partaken of it which means he will never die.
Rev. 22:2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.
Rev. 22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
Warning- Mr. Joyner has certainly put his revelation on par to John the apostle. He carefully warned Rev 22:18-19For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. One needs to ask if what Joyner has done by prophetic inspiration is add to the revelation contained in this book.
You have tasted of the heavenly realm, and no one ever wants to go back to the battle once they do. No one ever wants to leave the manifest presence of the Lord. When the apostle Paul came here he struggled for the rest of his life as to whether he should stay and labor for the sake of the church or return here to enter into His inheritance. His inheritance was magnified the longer he stayed and served on earth. Now that you have the heart of a true worshiper you will always want to be here, but you can when you enter into true worship. The more focused you are on Him, the more glory you will see, regardless of where you are.
Comment:We see here that Rick Joyner seems to believe he is much superior in anointing and privilege to Paul, who visited the third heaven but was completely forbidden to say anything about what he heard (2 Cor. 12:4). In Col 2:18 Paul warns about similar people of his day who were puffed up and went around claiming knowledge superior to what he and the other apostles taught.
To say he can enter heaven anytime by worship is nonsense. Heaven has a location it is a place.
Wisdom's words had finally calmed me. Again I closed my eyes just to thank the Lord for this wonderful experience, and the life He had given to me. As I did, I started to see His glory again, and all of the emotion of the previous worship experience flooded my soul. The Lord's words to me were so loud and clear that I was sure they were audible; I will never leave or forsake you.
Lord, forgive my unbelief, I responded. Please help me never to leave or forsake you.
One of Joynerıs most basic mistakes is to think Jesus is an angel called Wisdom. The Creator and Lord of the universe is not one of His creations (an angel). He is vastly superior to the angels, as Hebrews 1 declares. To promote this as the revelation he received from Jesus shows to me this is not from the Jesus of the Bible. The revelation He has goes from one thing to another that often times contradict Scripture.
p.44 Here the real world was not real, and the spiritual realm was so much more real that I just could not imagine going back to the other.
Wisdom says, You are dreaming, he said. But this dream is more real than what you think of as real. The Father gave men dreams to help them see the door to His dwelling place. He will only dwell in men's hearts, and dreams can be a door to your heart, which will lead you to Him.
'I am the primary gift that has been given to you for your work he said. I will show you the way, and I will keep you on it, but only love will keep you faithful. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, but the highest wisdom is to love Him.
NON Biblical:The above paragraph can only be described as a revelation of babble. What on earth does it mean? How can this be explained adequately? Joyner uses familiar Scripture verses to sound Biblical and give himself authority, but when strung together or qualified with other phrases they don't always make any clear sense. Do our dreams lead to our heart where we will find the Father? Does the Father ONLY dwell in mens heart? This is certainly New Age mysticism to go within oneself and find this. Where does the Bible say the greatest WISDOM is love? The spiritual realm is not more real than what we live in. This sounds like it is tainted with Hinduism which teaches this world is an illusion and not the true reality. The Dream concept seems to have picked up in Tommy Tenneys book Gods Dream team, where God has planted his dream within His children and we need to Keep His dream alive. I don't have any answers for this except to say it is not biblical.
He follows Wisdom toward the gate. I remembered the exhilaration of the battle and the climb up the mountain, and it was compelling, but there was no comparison to the presence of the Lord and the worship I had just experienced. Leaving this would be the greatest sacrifice I had ever made. Then I remembered how it was all inside of me and was amazed that I could forget this so quickly. It was like there was a great battle raging within me, between what I saw with my physical eyes and what I saw with my heart. p44
Comment: Saying that it was all inside of me is an Eastern concept, not a Biblical one. Godıs spirit comes to abide in Christians but is not contained by them. The Jesus with eyes of flaming fire and feet of fine brass that John the beloved disciple saw in Revelations 1 was not all inside of him. Phil 2:10-11 says that every knee shall bow and tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. We don't bow to ourselves. The Bible says in him is found all wisdom. He is a person.
The Bible says to love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength (Mark 12:30), all working together. There is no Biblical reason for expecting what the mind sees through the eyes and be at war with what the heart sees. Jesus said to the Father, Your word is truth (John 17:17). Truth is to correspond with reality. Reality will not make a lie out of what God is impressing upon your heart. You do not have to choose between reality outside and inside feelings.
I moved forward so that I was walking beside Wisdom, and asked, I have prayed for twenty-five years to be caught up
p44into the third heaven like the apostle Paul. Is this the third heaven?"this is part of it, he replied, "but there is much more. Will I be allowed to see more?" I asked.You will see much more. I am taking you to see more now," he replied.I started thinking of the book of Revelation. "Was John's revelation part of the third heaven? I asked.
part of John's revelation was from the third heaven, but most of it was from the second heaven. The first heaven was before the fall of man. the second heaven is the spiritual realm during the reign of evil upon the earth. The third heaven is when the love and domain of the Father will again prevail over the earth through the king.
Comment: Notice he says his desire was to have the experience of Paul. So he was pursuing and coveting a spiritual experience which puts one is a precarious position of being deceived. Students of the Bible generally agree that the first heaven refers to the atmosphere where, for instance where birds fly (Gen 1:9, 20), the second to space where the stars are (Gen 1:1), and the third of course to the realm where God dwells. There is absolutely no Scriptural basis for Joynerıs conceptions of the first and second heavens. Actually the Bible refutes Joyner because when the judgments are poured out from heaven to the earth during the tribulation. there is no reason to believe the heavens are ages.
What was the first heaven like? I inquired, strangely feeling a cold chill as I asked.It is wisdom not to be concerned about that now, Wisdom responded with increased seriousness as my question seemed to jolt him. Wisdom is to seek to know the third heaven just as you have. There is much more to know about the third heaven than you can know in this life, and it is the third heaven, the kingdom, that you must preach in this life. In the ages to come you will be told about the first heaven, but it is not profitable for you to know about it now.
warned about teachers who intrude into things not seen and become vainly puffed
up through a fleshly mind (Col 2:18).I never heard the Scripture mentioning
preaching a third heaven message.
I resolved to remember the cold chill I had just felt, and Wisdom nodded, which I knew to be an affirmation of that thought. What a great companion you are, I had to say as I realized the valuable gift that this angel was. You really will keep me on the right path.I will indeed, he replied.p.45
Psalm 119:105 says that Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to
my path, and 119:11 says, Your word have I hidden in my heart, that I
might not sin against You. God's word, not an angel named Wisdom, is given to
us to keep us on the right course. Where does the Bible say an angel
personally guides us on our path, this is like spirit guides in the new age. The
Holy Spirit guides us, he is not angel but God. hew leads us into God's word of
Comment: Extra biblical-Angels are God's messengers and agents, always on a Divine mission. The Bible does not speak of their emotions and that angels love us. This guided tour by an angel is in my biblical opinion the deception in his vision. consider what this angel next says to him.
It is wisdom to love and I could not be Wisdom if I did not love you. It is also wisdom to behold the kindness and the severity of God. It is wisdom to love Him and to fear Him. You are in deception if you do otherwise. This is the next lesson that you must learn, he said with unmistakable earnest.
I do know that, and have taught it many times, I responded, feeling for the first time that maybe Wisdom did not fully know me.
I have been your companion for a very long time, and I know your teachings, Wisdom replied. Now you are about to learn what some of your own teachings mean. As you have said many times, 'It is not by believing in your mind, but in your heart that results in righteousness.
comment: What does this angel mean by his own teachings? The Scriptural concept of the heart was more inclusive than just feelings but was the rational-spiritual nature of man and the center of thought and conception which knows, understands, and reflects (The New Ungerıs Bible Dictionary, page 544). Therefore, it includes not excludes, belief in the mind. Otherwise believing in your heart would make no sense for how can the heart rejoice over something the mind has not taken in. We are made to act as a whole being body soul spirit not portions. Joyner lacks a proper understanding of a Biblical concepts, but this can be due to his accepting the vision and angels words over the Bibles.
now taking you to another place because it is time for you to worship Him in the fear of His judgment. Until you know both there is a danger that we can be separated from each other
Do you mean that if l had stayed back there in that glorious worship I would have lost you? I asked in disbelief.
'Yes. I would have always visited with you when I could, but we would have rarely crossed paths. It is hard to leave such glory and peace, but that is not the whole revelation of the King. He is both a Lion and a Lamb. To the spiritual children He is the Lamb. To the maturing He is the Lion. To the fully mature He is both the Lion and the Lamb. Again, I know you understand this, but you have known it in your mind. Soon you will know it in your heart, for you are about to experience the judgment seat of Christ.
Comment : Jesus is the Lamb who takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29). His role as the perfect Passover Lamb who was acceptable to the Father as the sacrifice for mankindıs sin has nothing to do with the spiritual age or youth of believers. This is a misunderstanding and misuse of this key theological term. As the inheritor of the throne of David, He is also the Lion of Judah who opens the seals. But no teaching ever tells us to know him as the lion. This has nothing to do with the spiritual maturity of those who believe in Him. To all believers as the Lamb He is their savior and their Lord. He comes back as the lion in as far as the judgment. The judgment seat of Christ is after one dies not for a dream or vision. What kind of interpretation is this? Certainly since it is outside the Bibles revelation it becomes a mystical journey that science fiction writers would be jealous of.
He then asked Wisdom to ponder all that that I had experienced. ... he replied, but I have a better place for you to do it. He follows Wisdom out of the gates down the mountain. To my surprise the battle was still going on, but not as intensely as it was when we ascended. There were still arrows of accusation and slander flying about on the lower levels, but most of the enemy horde that was left was furiously attacking the great white eagles. The eagles were easily prevailing.
We kept descending until we were almost at the bottom. just above the levels of Salvation and Sanctification was the level Thanksgiving and Praise. I remembered this level very well because one of the greatest attacks of the enemy p.47
Each level [of the mountain] was named for a biblical truth. The lower levels
were named after foundational truths such as Salvation, Sanctification,
Prayer, Faith, etc., and the higher levels were named after deeper
biblical truths. (My emphasis.)
Salvation is here presented as a level lower than Thanksgiving and Praise. This is certainly a lower view of salvation than the apostle Paul had when he determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified (1 Cor 2:2). To Paul, no knowledge was higher than the knowledge that Christ died for our sins. Joyner's angel belittles this with handing him a whole new view of Christianity.
this book review will be continually worked on ( soon to be done)