Word Faith teaching- A spiritual copy of the Mind Sciences
Recently the book and DVD called “the secret” has become popular. It was promoted by Oprah Winfrey, a mind science adherent. It has made a large impact in a short time in America and throughout the world. “The Secret” Book is a bestseller, on the USA Today, Wall Street Journal and New York Times bestseller lists. 6 million copies of the book have been sold so far. The Secret is also an 80 minute DVD that is the top-seller on Amazon.com and BarnesAndNoble.com; 3 million copies have been bought. In other words this is in its beginning.
Many have accepted it as the newest success in life technique. It is really a potpourri of occult and metaphysical ideas. It is the basic message of the New age Movement- HUMAN POTENTIAL, which has its roots in mind science teachings. In this series of articles I want us to look at the similarities of the teachings of “the Secret” and its source and compare it to the word faith movements teachings.
The 29 co-contributors quoted by the author Rhonda Byrne of “The Secret.” All the authors agree with the metaphysical worldview and practice the concepts presented in the book and DVD.
Rhonda Byrne sums up “The Secret” as: “The law of attraction is the most powerful law.” “like attracts like. ... The law of attraction is giving you what you are thinking about. It is working all the time. “What we do is we attract into our lives the things we want, and that is based on what we’re thinking and feeling,”
“we create our own circumstances by the choices we make in life. And the choices we make are fueled by our thoughts—which means our thoughts are the most powerful things we have here on earth.” That’s something to really think about.
How does it work? Everything and everyone in the universe is energy and our thoughts put out a vibration, then things are attracted to us like a magnet.
John Walsch of the Secret states Thoughts are like magnets, drawing effects to you.” (p. 188)
Michael Beckwith states on the DVD that this has been “scientifically proven”, Bob Proctor says this “law” is-- “energy attracts like energy.” They seem to have overlooked that opposites attract in magnetism, like repels like. Oh well, so much for being scientific.
This concept is not exclusive to the Secret book- New Age participants have known this for years. John Randolph Price agrees; in his book “The Superbeings” he says: “Like attracts like. What you think in your mind will produce in your experience. … All the Power of the Universe is within you and this Power you can have anything on earth you desire.” (xv The Superbeings John Randolph Price 1981 Quartus foundation)
To put it simply in there own words- the ‘universal mind’ is energy ... which is everywhere, and we are all ‘One’ with it, and have power to control our reality. There is no personal Holy God in “The Secret,” instead they use the universe as a substitute, in fact- the closest they come to calling something God is by saying you are God.
P.46 of “The Secret” states “you are the master of the Universe the law obeys you.” -- “Your wish is my command.” We are told “This law listens to everything we think and act.” You have got to be kiddin’, the law is an “it” but it has ears. It has a mind but none of its own, it obeys us.
Mind science promoter Robert Collier wrote about the same concepts in his books The God in You, The Secret Power, The Magic Word, and The Law of the Higher Potential. In his book “Secret of the Ages” he writes: “Being a part of Universal Mind, sharing that Universal Mind's all-power, it has only to put the Creative Force all about it into the mold of your thought and bring the object into being” (Secret of the Ages p.62).
As we will see the word faith teachers are not far from the original tree that bore this fruit.
When and where did these ideas begin? In the middle of the 19th century to the early 1900’s a small spiritual revolution began, it used a mystical interpretation of Bible and combined other concepts to form a new type of spiritual system- it was called “New Thought.” Today we categorize it as the new age movement.
The founder of New Thought philosophy was Phineas Quimby, he was a student of spiritism, occultism, hypnosis and other expressions of parapsychology. His ideas gained prominence, and from his ideas was born Christian Science, Religious Science and became the basis for a number of cults, which include Unity School of Christianity.
New Thought's basic teaching is that everything is in the mind. We create our own world of good or evil, health or sickness, prosperity or lack by our thoughts. Mary Baker Eddy was one of the early patients Quimby “healed” and she began a new interpretation of the Bible called “Christian science” that was based upon Quimby's teachings-which she never admitted to. Her ideology was God is “Divine Mind,” and illness results from being out of tune with “Divine Mind.” Christian Science makes sickness an illusion and one overcomes it with correct thinking, it is the same thing in the word faith movement, they believe their body is lying to them. They disbelieve the symptoms, and stand on continual positive confession of the word to relieve them-selves.
The Unity School of Christianity (also known as Unity) was founded in 1889 by Charles and Myrtle Fillmore. Charles Fillmore is quoted in The Secret along with other New Thought teachers. One of Fillmore’s quotes in the book states: “Divine Mind is the one and only reality.”
It is important to note that Phineas Quimby is the man who E.W. Kenyon studied and embraced his ideas. These same concepts were later embraced and copied by Kenneth Hagin. Both he and his disciple Kenneth Copeland popularized these teachings in the church. Kenyon denied that he taught religious science. Yet it is a fact that his schooling were from those who practiced that philosophy. His influence came through years attending the Emerson College School of Oratory. Charles Wesley Emerson was an adherent of New Thought metaphysics. Emerson joined Christian Science in 1903 and remained in that religion until his death in 1908.
Another New Thought church is Religious Science whose founder Ernest Holmes based his “Science of Mind” on the same concepts: Holmes doubted the answers he got in church. He discovered the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson. “Reading Emerson is like drinking water to me.” He pursued his metaphysical studies which involved literature, science, philosophy, and religion. And finally embraced the Christian Science teachings of Mary Baker Eddy. He then came upon the works of Ralph Waldo Trine, Horatio Dresser and Phineas Quimby. He moved from Christian Science teachings to Larson's works.
Ernest Holmes patterned his Science of Mind on: “Man, by thinking, can bring into his experience whatsoever he desires ....” “all is mind and that everything is governed by law, there comes another thought: it is that he can create, or have created for him from his own thinking. He can create such a strong mental atmosphere of success that its power of attraction will be irresistible. He can send his thought throughout the world and have it bring back to him whatever he wants” ( “Creative Mind and Success” by Ernest Holmes).
More recently-Norman Vincent Peale, a student of Holmes brought these same concepts into the church. He too based his positive-thinking principles on New Thought. Peale said as a youth he had “the worst inferiority complex of all,” and developed his positive thinking philosophy to help himself. Peale is what is known as a “progressive in religion-” one who did not believe in the bibles testimony of Jesus being the only way. In 1984, on the Phil Donahue program, Peale said, “It's not necessary to be born again. You have your way to God; I have mine. I found eternal peace in a Shinto shrine ...I've been to Shinto shrines, and God is everywhere:” Shocked, Phil Donahue responded, “But you're a Christian minister; you're supposed to tell me that Christ is the way and the truth and the life, aren't you?” Peale replied, “Christ is one of the ways. God is everywhere.” (Christian News (May 12, 1997), 11.
Peale taught “Your unconscious mind ... [has a] power that turns wishes into realities when the wishes are strong enough.” ( Norman Vincent Peale, Positive Imaging (Fawcett Crest, 1982), p. 77.)
He also taught: “God is energy. As you breathe God in, as you visualize His energy, you will be reenergized!” (Norman Vincent Peale, PLUS: The Magazine of Positive Thinking, 37:4, May 1986, Part 11, 23.) Similarly, John Walsch of “the Secret” states “God is the energy you call imagination.” p. 198).
These same concepts/teachings permeate the mind sciences.
Peale recommendation to visualizing this energy to permeate one's being; inhale this energy as God
Is found in new age (occult) they visualize energies circulating around or through their body. The vineyard churches a number of years ago would scoop the air around people to bring it toward them calling the Holy spirit to fill them. This is known as pantheism, and is more like Hinduism’s prana, where one breathes the air in their yoga exercise for energizing themselves.
Peale is known to be a 33rd degree Mason. When a Mason reaches this level of illumination he is taught that the god of the Bible is really a false god and Lucifer the lightbearer is the true God.
Robert Schuller attributed to Peale to be the man who had the greatest influence upon his theology and ministry, (He even claimed Peale starting the positive thinking movement). Schuller changed the term positive thinking to Possibility thinking and continued to contain the principles of these same ideas.
There are Spiritual winds that blow from the same source in the same direction. We have watched the church copy the world but when the world starts to mimic the church- we need to pay attention. ‘The Secret’ DVD and book is sweeping the secular world. The word faith teachers in the church originally got their teaching from the new thought movement over one hundred years ago - both are from the same source.
Some of you may be surprised that Christians are attracted to the Secret (no pun meant). Why Not? Word faith teachers have been using these very same concepts inside the church for years and now they are acceptable because of their promotion on major Christian TV networks.
As we continue we are going to see a thread of commonality in the teachings of mind science and word faith. Interesting note- They both use many of the same scriptures.
Quotes from the Secret:
Whatever is going on in your mind is what you are attracting
Mind science teacher W. Clement Stone, is quoted in the Secret: “Whatever the mind of man can conceive, it can achieve”
Kenneth Copeland tells people to visualize: “Any image that you get down on the inside of you that is so vivid when you close your eyes you see it, it'll come to pass. When God came at the Tower of Babel, He said, 'Anything they can imagine, they can do.'“ (Copeland, Inner Image of the Covenant, side 2)
Indeed the Lord did say at the Tower of Babel in Gen. 11:6: “now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them.” It wasn’t a good thing.
Rhonda Byrne, in her book and DVD, The Secret, tells how her daughter gave her a copy of The Science of Getting Rich, a book written in 1910 by Wallace D. Wattles. She believes she discovered the success of “the greatest people in history.” This book inspired Byrne to create her bestselling DVD. Wattle’s explains that the: “universal mind” underlies and permeates all creation. Through the process of visualization we can engage the law of attraction, impressing our thoughts upon “formless substance” to bring the desired result. . Once a person learns and obeys these laws, he will get rich with mathematical certainty.”
Byrne, the author of The Secret, is also greatly influenced by a couple named Jerry and Esther Hicks‘. In the Acknowledgements of The Secret, she thanks them for the teachings of Abraham. On the Hicks website, we find: “Abraham, a group of obviously evolved teachers, speak their broader Non-physical perspective through the physical body of Esther” In other words this is channeling- spirit possession.
On April 5, 2007, Oprah Winfrey discussed the Secret with these spirits “channeled” by Secret promoter, Esther Hicks. Not that we should be surprised, “channeling” has long been promoted openly on Oprah’s TV show.
What do the Hicks teach—
‘You are a creator; you create with your every thought. Anything that you can imagine is yours to be or do or have.” This is straight out of Mind Science
Jerry Hicks had also been a devotee of the book “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill. Napoleon Hill said of his book- “This book contains the secret” (Napoleon Hill Think and Grow Rich p.9). Hill was taught the same occult principles by demons who posed as Ascended Masters from a School of Wisdom on the astral plane. Hill stated “I know I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul” (Think and Grow Rich p.86) – this is word for word from Charles Fillmore’s book “Dynamics for Living,” and Ernest Holmes Creative Mind and Success.
Ernest Holmes founder of Religious Science also came upon the same “Supreme Secret” that was revealed to Napoleon Hill- “Science of MIND teaches that Man controls the course of his life ... by mental processes which function according to a Universal Law ...”
Rhonda Byrne’s book is connected to both Wattles and the Hicks. The Hicks is connected to Napoleon Hill.
So we see a common source for “the Secret” teaching- it is dictated by spirit guides. We will confirm that these same teachings permeate the word faith movement.
We are warned that the teaching of demons will come into the church 1 Tim. 4:1: “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.” The reason for this is found in 2 Tim. 4:3-4 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables”.
The secret teaches visualization- so do the mind sciences. Certain Christian leaders have been teaching visualization for years. In his booklet, The Power of the Inner Eye, Robert Schuller corrupts the Scripture by claiming that it advocates the occult technique of visualization. In an article dealing with . . . visualization .... “This is the vision that the Bible is talking about in the verse, “Where there is no vision the people perish.”. . . I have practiced and harnessed the power of the inner eye and it works .... Thirty years ago we started with a vision of a church. It's all come true.” (May, 1985, issue of Psychology Today, “In the Mind's Eye.”)
So he admits to practicing this occult technique.
Schuller wrote the forward of Yonggi Cho’s book “The Fourth Dimension,” which is filled with promoting new age visualization “I discovered the reality of that dynamic dimension in prayer that comes through visualizing..... Don't try to understand it. Just start to enjoy it! It's true. It works. I tried it.”
Visualization is one of the fastest ways to open oneself up to the spiritual realm—Cho teaches praying is not sufficient that “We should always try to visualize the end result as we pray.... If you have not visualized clearly in your heart exactly what you hope for, it cannot become a reality to you....” .... Through visualizing and dreaming, you can incubate your future and hatch the results” (The Fourth Dimension, Volume Two, pp. 25-28, 68, p. 44)
Aside from some Christian terms, I could mix up their quotes and you could not tell which is from mind/religious science and from the church.
David Cho explains of his four step plan for the incubation formula: 1) Visualize a clear-cut goal or idea in your mind; 2) have a burning desire for your objective; 3) pray until you get the guarantee or assurance from God that what you desire is already yours; 4) speak or confess the end result into existence.”
This the same formulae used in the secret- Play the picture in your
mind - focus on the end result” VISUALIZE!!! Rehearse your future” “
VISUALIZE!!! See it, feel it! This is where action begins”
Both Cho and the Secret are nearly identical of Mind science teacher Robert Collier “There is no limit, you know, to Mind. Visualize this thing that you want. See it, feel it, BELIEVE in it. Make your mental blue-print, and begin to build! (Robert Collier, The Law of Higher Potential, p. 368 (1947).
“We have taught our people how to ... visualize success .... Through visualizing and dreaming, you can incubate your future and hatch the results.” (P. Yonggi Cho 4th Dimension p.44, vol.2, pp.25-28, 68)
“This is what the Holy Spirit taught me.” (The Fourth Dimension p. 39-44)
How did the Holy Spirit teach him something that the Christian church never had in Scripture or was taught to the apostles for the early church? Occultists have been practicing this for thousands of years. It is one thing to receive a vision from God it is another to conjure it up oneself and expect God to obey.
What is the difference between someone seeing in the mind what they would want and have it materialize, and for example, seeing a picture to draw a blueprint of a house? The architect is not using the image or his mind to actually create the house- they are using they hands, physical labor to create it. The spiritual dimension (mind) is not controlling the material world.
Neither Jesus, Paul or anyone else used techniques as imaging or visualization for prayer or healing.
These same concepts - manipulating the spiritual realm though images or words to influence the physical world to materialize results has been used by shamans, witch doctors and occultists for millennia.
As mind Science teacher Fillmore said- “substance is first given form in the mind”
Laura Cabot, a witch calls visualization, magic, contact with unconscious materials and images occur spontaneously. Imaginative possibilities are more sharply focused... For these reasons witches do most of their magical work in alpha” (Power of The Witch, p. 175 Laura Cabot).
In the occult: the “law of manifestation,” declares that thoughts held firmly in the mind, spoken aloud, or visualized will “manifest' in the physical world. We will see the concepts and idea of visualization is carried into the word faith teaching of speaking and confessing.
Pt.2 speaking things into existence