The above-mentioned article further explained the Word Faith teachings of the various speakers at Presence 2012, including Phil and Chris Pringle, Kong Hee and John Bevere. That post then noted the following:We believe that as we gather together at Presence the heavens will be opened over your life and you will experience a greater outpouring of his anointing, blessing, vision and miracles. (Online Source)
Knowing all of this, then, what ought one think of Steven Furtick's involvement in Presence 2012? Furtick has been lovingly embraced by leaders such as James MacDonald and Mark Driscoll. Yet, he has done little to hide his desire to grow his skills and influence among the Word Faith crowd. Furtick has lauded the work of infamous Word Faith teachers T.D. Jakes and Joyce Meyer. Many of Furtick's own sermons either hint at or in some instances, blatantly promote dangerous Word Faith teachings. His special invitation to speak at Presence 2012, then, ought not surprise. However, it still should elicit concern. With its language of a "fresh anointing," and "vision and miracles," Presence 2012 appears to go beyond the familiar Word Faith teachings of "health and wealth," and into the realm of signs, wonders and manifestations.So, just what did Steven Furtick preach at Presence 2012? The video below shares a few minutes of the conference on Thursday night, 12 April. (Additional videos of this event can be viewed at the YouTube channel for C3ChurchWatch). At this time, Steven Furtick was asked to preach prior to the offering. In doing so, he chose to share from 2 Kings 4. Contrasting the story of the poor widow in 2 Kings 4:1-7, with the story immediately following of the Shunammite woman, Furtick preached that those who don't have much to give (like the widow), ought to offer what they do have so that God may give them what they need. Conversely, those who may have much, but who want or need something that money cannot buy (just like the Shunammite woman desired a son), ought to give accordingly. Furtick teaches that "all you have is all God needs" to "set something in motion in your life." Says Furtick at around the 9:20 mark, "Put what you have and let God do what you need. Make room for God tonight in this offering to bring something into your life that you need." Ought one expect, then, that by not placing a check in the offering, God will refuse, or be unable, to work His will in one's life?
Of course, every offering ought to be made with an element of faith and obedience, but these words indicate that one must give in order to "make room" or to enable God to do His work in one's life. In this brief teaching, Steven Furtick erroneously taught a decidedly descriptive, historical passage of Scripture as prescriptive. This demonstrates a poor understanding of the biblical text both in content and intent.
Perhaps even more disturbing, however, are the multiple instances within this short teaching that Steven Furtick claims to have received direct revelation from God. The reader is encouraged to view the video again, and note the following:
- At 2:48, Furtick says to the leaders of C3, "The Lord told me to give you $7,000 for your Brooklyn church."
- At 6:04 , he states that, following this offering, the great things of which he had spoken "are gonna happen for somebody" due to that person's obedience that night. Really? How does Steven Furtick know this?
- At 8:44, Furtick begins his next few statements by declaring that, "Somebody needed to hear me say..." Again, how is he aware of this? Who is telling him these things so definitively?
- Finally, at approximately 9:50, Steven Furtick begins to describe how he and his wife had saved up a $5,000 emergency fund early in their marriage. Says Furtick, "God told me to give it," and so he wrote five $1,000 checks. He continues, "As soon as I had written the last one, God said, 'I will never allow you to lack for anything you need to do My will if you keep your hands open to Me in this way.'"
Within a brief, 11 minute message, then, Steven Furtick claimed at least four times to have heard directly from God. He does not share how he came to receive this special knowledge. Was it an audible voice, handwriting on the wall, or something less ostentatious? The danger here lies in the claims themselves. If Steven Furtick is not hearing audibly from God, then he quickly needs to correct his dangerous language. If he is hearing voices, then he ought to be more specific and clear about that as well. As it is, this short message could easily have led one to believe that giving enough money that night at Presence 2012 may finally allow God to speak to that one just as Steven Furtick claimed that God has spoken to him.
In 11 short minutes, Steven Furtick was able to not only misuse, abuse and contort Scripture, but he also managed to mislead thousands of conference attendees as to the manner in which God works in their lives. He succeeded in teaching these thousands that God can work much more effectively if they would only give their money to the Presence 2012 offering. Undoubtedly, Furtick convinced many that placing a sum of money in the offering plate would finally allow them to hear from God so that they, too, could claim that "God told me."
Well, God spoke to this writer today as well. God spoke and declared that teachings such as Furtick's are exactly what people have requested, and God has graciously complied:
For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. (2 Timothy 4:3-4)
Steven Furtick and the Presence 2012 Conference
Steven Furtick is Lookin' for the Favor
"We Can Work It Out:" Is Steven Furtick Qualified to Have this Conversation?
God Gives Ken Silva a Word for Seeker Driven / Attractional Pastors (Apprising Ministries)