Friday, September 02, 2005

Heresies in the church - Part 3

Having posted on how the WOF preachers such as Kenneth Copeland, Kenneth Hagin, Benny Hinn, Joyce Meyer and many more pervert the Biblical doctrine of the Atonement and also claim that Jesus died spiritually (a physical death for payment could have been accomplished by anyone), today we will go a bit further.

Satanic nature?

One of the main tenets of the WOF is that when Jesus died He actually took on Satan's nature. See what Kenneth Hagin wrote: "Sin separates from God. Spiritual death means separation from God. The moment Adam sinned, he was separated from God. Spiritual death means something more than separation from God. Spiritual death also means having Satan's nature. Jesus said to the Pharisees, [quotes Jn 8:44]. The Pharisees were very religious. They went to the synagogue on the Sabbath, they prayed, they paid their tithes, they fasted, and they did a lot of other fine and good things--but they lied about Christ and murdered Him. Jesus said they were children of the devil--they had the characteristics of the devil. When one is born again, he takes upon himself the nature of God--which is Life and peace. The nature of the devil is hatred and lies. Jesus tasted death--spiritual death--for every man. Sin is more than a physical act; it is a spiritual act. He became what we were, that we might become what He is. [quotes 2 Cor 5:21]. Jesus became sin. His Spirit was separated from God. And He went down into hell in our place. Notice in the following Scripture, that Peter, preaching on the day of Pentecost concerning the Lord Jesus Christ, said, "Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption." I encourage you to read Peter's entire message. He brings out the fact that David, in Psalm 16:8-10, was really prophesying by the Spirit of God. [quotes Ac 2:25-27;29-31]. Paul is talking about the same thing in Acts 13:33. [quotes Ac 13:33]. It is clear that both Peter and Paul are talking about the same thing. You will not be able to understand the authority in the Name of Jesus until you understand this fact. Down in the prison house of suffering--down in hell itself--Jesus satisfied the claims of Justice on the behalf of each one of us, because He died as our substitute." [1]

If Jesus died spiritually and literally took on a sin nature as WOF teachers teach then Jesus Himself would have been in need of an atonement! At the same time, Jesus would not have been a perfect sacrifice without blemish! According to the O.T., a sin offering, being a substitute, was required to be perfect and unblemished (Lev. 4:3,28; 9:3; cf. Deut. 15:21). The animals chosen for the sin offering were, according to Leviticus 4:32, a bull without defect; Lev. 4:23, a goat without defect; Lev. 4:32, a lamb without defect (see 1Cor. 5:7, Jesus as the Paschal Lamb). Even worse Hagin here wants us to believe that Jesus took on the very nature of Satan! So, in Hagin's mind, Jesus ceased to be God at some point and took on the nature of Satan. God does not change! Jesus certainly would have been in need of propitiation by someone else! Further, in Hagin's mind, the suffering of the cross--where atonement was made as a propitiation against God's wrath--was not enough and Jesus needed to enter hell and suffer there on our behalf. This is not found in the NT. Jesus did not become sin, but rather, sin was imputed to Him.
1Pe 1:19 ESV but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.
When the Bible says
2Co 5:21 ESV For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
"...scholars agree that the word 'sin' in this passage is used in an abstract sense. They are virtually unanimous in pointing out that the phrase 'to become sin' as used here is a metonym (a word or phrase substituted for another associated word or phrase), for Christ 'bearing the penalty of our sins'. Expositor, T.J. Crawford, maintains that 'there can be no doubt that the expression is metonymical, since it is impossible that Christ, or any person, could be literally made sin'." [2]
This verse teaches that Christ has been considered as though He were a sinner. As with the lamb in the O.T. sacrificial system, sin was imputed to Christ. According to Isaiah 53:4,5, the sin of man was laid to the account of Christ. Our sin was imputed to Jesus, and His righteousness was imputed to our favour. God treated Christ as if he were a sinner, just as He now treats the Christian as if he had never sinned. If Jesus had literally become sin, His offering would have been unacceptable to God. Another point is that the NIV has a footnote saying "Or be a sin offering."

Or, it could be like this:
"God made him who had no sin to be a sin offering for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

"The Hebrew term for 'sin' and 'sin offering' is one and the same. The Hebrew term, hatt't can be translated either 'sin' or 'sin offering'; the context determines the meaning. When hatt't was used in reference to the O.T. animal substitute (which remained holy before and after its death), it was understood by the Jewish people as a 'sin offering'. The same is true in reference to the Greek term for 'sin', harmartia, in 2Cor. 5:21. The apostle Paul, a Hebrew of Hebrews, clearly had sin offering in mind and not literal sin....The O.T. sin offering did not typify something 'sinful' at death to the Jews as Hagin and other charismatics depict Christ; it typified 'a sinless sacrifice for sin'. Jesus did not become unholy on the cross, but was a holy sin offering who 'gave himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma' (Eph. 5:2)."[3]

Isa 53:11 ESV Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see and be satisfied; by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant, make many to be accounted righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities.

"In 1Timothy 3:16, God was manifested in the flesh and justified in the Spirit. Now you can't get somebody justified and made righteous in the spirit if it (sic) wasn't first unrighteous. The righteousness of God was made to be sin."[4] (Kenneth Copeland)
Jesus' being justified in the Spirit means nothing of the kind. This Scripture is simply telling us that Christ's claims of being the Son of God were justified or vindicated by the Holy Spirit.

In my next post we will see how the WOF preachers claim that Jesus had to be saved in hell. Shocking!!

Just thinking...

End Notes
[1] K. Hagin, The Name of Jesus, Tulsa, OK: K. Hagin Ministries, 1981. p31-33.
[2] H. Hanegraaff, Christianity in Crisis, Harvest House, 1993, p159.
[3] M. Moriarty, The New Charismatics, Zondervan, 1992, p362.
[4] K. Copeland, "What Happened From the Cross to the Throne" (audiotape) Fort Worth, Texas, K. Copeland Ministries, 1990 #02-0017 or 00-0303 Side B.

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