Friday, August 10, 2018

What has been your experience with Sozo? Doing more research...

Hello! 

I just got back on here to do a bit more research on Sozo.  If you have had a bad experience from Sozo, could you please email me at sozoresearch@gmail.com or leave a comment on here?

Thank you...

Sozo Research

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Sozo Prayer: Biblical or Mystical? A Practice from Bill Johnson's Bethel Church...

This is my most viewed article about sozo.  Simple and to the point.  Thousands of people are curious about sozo and are looking for answers.  

Sozo prayer is a new fad in the church world.  It started in Bill Johnson's Bethel Church in Redding, California by two ladies.  Yes, this is the same church that feathers, gemstones and clouds appear inside the church building.

Some people say these are lying signs and wonders prophesied in the Bible:
The Great Apostasy (2 Thessalonians 2)
"Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ[a]had come. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin[b] is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God[c] in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
Do you not remember that when I was still with you I told you these things? And now you know what is restraining, that he may be revealed in his own time. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He[d] who now restrains will do so until He[e] is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness."
Is it Biblical and safe, or mystical and dangerous?  Does your pastor follow Bill Johnson?  Paul Goulet of International Church of Las Vegas is one pastor who is on Bill Johnson's ministry friend list.  If you have friends or family involved in this group or practice, would you lovingly admonish/warn them? 

Related Articles:

http://blogs.christianpost.com/grace-under-fire/birds-of-a-feather-flock-together-10395/

http://www.gotquestions.org/Sozo-prayer.html

http://mkayla.wordpress.com/2011/03/14/a-note-re-sozo/

http://mkayla.wordpress.com/tag/sozo/

http://godlee4life.wordpress.com/2012/04/01/discernment-column-article-3/

http://godlee4life.wordpress.com/?s=sozo

http://closingstages.net/2011/01/30/sozo-ministry-of-bethel-church-ii/

http://closingstages.net/2011/01/30/sozo-ministry-of-bethel-church-ii/#comment-1607


http://blogs.christianpost.com/grace-under-fire/birds-of-a-feather-flock-together-10395/

Surprise! Is the tithe for today? In a nutshell, 3 eye-opening reasons why the tithe is unbiblical for today's Christian and is correlated with clergy abuse



Is the "tithe law" for today's Christian?

Like many concepts in the Bible, not every single one is necessarily for today. While generosity to the poor is a Biblical, New Testament ideal, tithing - giving a consistent ten percent of one's income to church leaders - is not for today. Here is another example: Leviticus 19:27 tells men to not shave their beards.

It would be nutty to tell others today that they must not shave their beards lest they incur a curse from God Himself.

The tithe is also found in Leviticus 27, for instance, and it is equally nutty to tell Christians to "test the tithe".

Journalist David Cary Hart recently penned an article about a controversial church called Bethel Church in Redding, California. Hart explained,
"Suffice it to say that church leadership rakes in untold millions of tax-deducted dollars. Apparently, leader Bill Johnson's wife, his two sons and their wives are all on the payroll. Bethel Church is the perfect example of why churches should be required to file the same annual reports as every other nonprofit organization. It won't happen because Congress is scared to death of Christianity, Inc."
It is beyond me why the government does not hold (professing) Christian churches more accountable, even the ones who buy $65 million gulfstream jets tax-free. It's corruption. It makes no sense, and many of these churches, despite their claims, do not exist for the "public good" but exist to rip off the public. The government lets them get away with it.

As it is, millions of sincere people are duped into giving their hard-earned dollars under manipulative means. The Washington Post and The New York Times are not the only news agencies that have taken notice, and it is rare that billions of dollars churches collect across the nation reach the poor, those who could truly use it. The fact that the tithe is not for today may come as a surprise because modern tele-evangelists and pastors are experts in brainwashing tithing into the minds of multitudes of Americans, often going so far as to threaten with God's divine retribution or "curse".

This leads to the first reason why the tithe is unbiblical: the tithe is a command found in the Old Testament, not the new. The only references to the tithe in the New Testament are: Matthew 23:23, Luke 18:12, and Hebrews 7. In all three references, the tithe is being spoken of in retrospect. The verse they twist and take out of its historical context in order to manipulate those in their care is from the Book of Malachi:
"Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation. Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it." Malachi 3:8-10; KJV (Emphasis mine)
Notice who God was talking to: a nation, not the body of Christ. It's truly funny and extremely ironic that the ones who are truly robbing others and "displeasing" God are the very ones who are manipulating his people:
"Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?" Acts 15:10; KJV
"Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage." Galatians 5:1KJV
The second reason the tithe is unbiblical is because it involves coercion.  Coercion is the opposite of liberty in Christ. God loves a cheerful giver, someone who gives under His guidance to those in need, not from the coercion of man. The latter involves bondage, not freedom. If there is any coercion involved, giving is not Spirit-filled. Important to note is that coercion usually comes by covert, veiled means - sly and subtle - often with a big smile and sincere-looking intentions. That's how error masquarades. For obvious reasons, many pastors love the following verse and love to use it in a threatening way to coerce others into "tithing". Upon further observation, where in the New Testament is there a command to tithe? Answer: there is no command to tithe in the New Testament.
Ironically, there is a command for pastors to not coerce others into giving:
"Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver." 2 Corinthians 9:7; KJV (Emphasis mine)
The word "necessity" here is from the Greek word anank─ôs which means to force or show a need for something. It refers to an outward pressure or influence from someone upon another, or a "compelling need requiring immediate action, i.e., in a pressing situation" (source). This makes me recall a time at a Baptist church in Henderson, Nevada when the preacher told the congregants that not tithing (to him) is the same as stealing a cart full of groceries from a grocery store. Erroneous pastors love to throw legality in on the tithe to add more guilt to others. It works, for the most part. Some congregants do pay attention to that "red flag" feeling, though, especially those with the spiritual gift of discernment.

A third, and most comical reason the tithe is simply unbiblical, is that the Old Testament tithe was not exactly cash! Rather, it was fruit of the land, oil, corn, new wine, herbs, herds, etc. If someone brought a true tithe to a church, it could very well be a bucket of turnips or basil, along with a goat, yet somehow modern pastors have managed to persuade others that the tithe is what's in one's pockets. The Malachi verse says the tithe was "meat".
"And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the LORD'S: it is holy unto the LORD." Leviticus 27:30: KJV
"Thou mayest not eat within thy gates the tithe of thy corn, or of thy wine, or of thy oil, or the firstlings of thy herds or of thy flock, nor any of thy vows which thou vowest, nor thy freewill offerings, or heave offering of thine hand: But thou must eat them before the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD thy God shall choose, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates: and thou shalt rejoice before the LORD thy God in all that thou puttest thine hands unto." Deuteronomy 12:17,18; KJV
"Then brought all Judah the tithe of the corn and the new wine and the oil unto the treasuries." Nehemiah 13:12; KJV
These are only three of the reasons the tithe is not for today; there are many more reasons. Be assured that if your pastor is preaching the "tithe", it is rotten, twisted, heretical fruit. As the old saying goes, "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree". Corrupt teaching comes from currupt intentions, no doubt. It's clergy abuse, also known as spiritual abuse. The "test the tithe" teaching, giving ten percent of one's income to the church, often including an "or else" threat, is a sign of an unhealthy church.

Be free today to be guided by the generous, loving hand of God to meet the needs of others according to His plan for your life, not man's. Jesus did speak about giving to the poor. "My pastor teaches the tithe, and he is a very nice man looking out for the needs of the church", some may say. Please don't be tricked. The American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC) has addressed this issue about pastors who do not have the best intentions for others, and the con-artist pastor knows precisely what he is doing. He (or she) may very well be an artist using the Bible against others (who are too trusting) in a twisted manner.

I hope you enjoyed the video on the tithe.
  Source: Strong's Concordance 318

Tags: The Tithe Lie; Anthem Community Church Henderson, Nevada; Green Valley Baptist Church Henderson, Nevada

Saturday, June 2, 2018

The fascist and dominionist roots and history of sozo and its ties to Latter Rain, NAR and Dominionism

Sozo is tied to Bethel Church in Redding, California, which has strong affiliation with the Latter Rain Movement and Dominionism.  Dominionism is also known as the New Apostolic Reformation or the Seven Mountains Mandate.  All these movements can be likened to separate, polluted "rivers" which come from the same muddy waste dump.  In America, sozo originated at Bill Johnson's Bethel church in Redding, California.  The following is some rather informative information on the "sketchy" history of sozo and its related movements: 
"The origins of the movement are sketchy, but trace back to at least two influences, the Latter Rain movement and Dominionism.
The Latter Rain movement gained traction in the 1950s as a movement holding Pentecostal beliefs but largely outside the existing Pentecostal denominations, teaching the imminent rise of a victorious church that transcended denominational organizations and endowed with supernatural power through miraculous working of the Holy Spirit. The early Latter Rain movement is sometimes linked to William Branham, although most reject Branham's Jesus-only baptism beliefs, and may have also had some influence on parts of the Jesus Movement and on the Discipling and Shepherding movement. Among the Latter Rain movement's teachings were that the rise of a victorious church of "overcomers" endowed with supernatural power to wage spiritual warfare and perform miracles would usher in the second coming of Christ. The terms "Manifest Sons of God" and "Joel's Army" referred to these "overcomers".
Dominionism is a movement that began in the 1970s with Calvinist roots, teaching that the Biblical admonition for Christians to "take dominion" over all the earth includes taking dominion over civil government and law, and that civil law should be based on Biblical teachings."
The problem with dominionism of course is that it is fascist and militant all the while hiding behind the cloak of being "good" and "Christian".  Even more disturbing is that most dominionists are not even aware that they are dominionists.  The dominionist leaders have an agenda to wipe out other Christian denominations and to take over civil society.  They believe that they, as God's elite group, are mandated by Jesus himself to do this by force.

Unless we want a fascist system to gain foothold in our nation, we need to be aware of the dominionists' influence on politics and America.  There are many conservative politicians who are dominionists (I will talk about that more in the coming weeks).    

The interview below is quite eye-opening.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Is Sozo a cult? What is Sozo? A look at the new Scientology, Bethel Church, Bill Johnson and the new age...

A while back, I wrote about Sozo being more dangerous than Scientology.  In a nutshell, Sozo is more cleverly disguised than Scientology. TruNews provides an audio discussion at the link below.

Below, Rick Wiles of TruNews describes Sozo:

https://www.trunews.com/article/is-sozo-prayer-warmed-up-scientology
New Age churches such as Bethel in Redding California are teaching people to vibrate and get into harmony with God and the universe.  They are also anticipating audibly hearing a new sound from Heaven.  And a popular craze currently circulating in many Charismanic churches – especially Bethel - is something called Sozo Prayer. 
We're going to discuss the Sozo Prayer movement today and some other weird things happening in the New Age charismanic churches.

Without a doubt, the premier name in New Age churches is Bethel in Redding California.  Over 8,000 people attend religious services each week at Bethel.   The senior pastor is Rev. Bill Johnson. They emphasize the super-natural. 
- TruNews with Rick Wiles

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

NEWS: CA mega-church has a fit over proposed conversion therapy legislation

http://www.slowlyboiledfrog.com/2018/03/ca-mega-church-has-fit-over-proposed.html

The following is an excerpt about Bethel Church from The Slowly Boiled Frog by David Cary Hart:
What the folks at Bethel don't seem to get is that they are embracing a form of conversion therapy that is at odds with every mainstream medical and counseling peer organization. “Professionally-guided” conversion therapy is an oxymoron.

While I was at it, an exploration of Bethel Church was in order. The operation, run like a commercial enterprise, consumes a staggering amount of tax-deducted dollars. Receipts and expenditures are a secret known only to highly compensated church leadership.

Bethel Church's website screams “cult” — very similar in tone to Scientology or the Unification Church (Moonies). It is a massive operation, structurally and financially. They claim to have missionaries around the globe. The church operates out of a $100 million campus in Redding, CA. They have a television network and world-class video conferencing facilities. Several church members are on the Redding city council. Last year, the church donated $500,000 to the city and shortly thereafter received approval for a new campus in spite of dozens of formally submitted citizen concerns... READ MORE.

Stay Away from Sozo Prayer! What is sozo? Is sozo a cult or cultic sect? Who is Bill Johnson?

What is sozo?  Is sozo safe?  Is sozo a cult?  Is Bethel Church safe?  Does God still heal and do miracles (I believe he does).  Let's define sozo and take a deeper look below (click link)...



Stay Away from Sozo Prayer!


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

A quick question: Is sozo more dangerous than scientology? A look at blatantly obvious vs. disguised falsehood...

Do you think sozo is more or less dangerous than Scientology?

Here is why I ask: Scientology has nothing to do with Jesus; as far as I understand, Scientologists do not really use the word Jesus or talk about Jesus at all.  They also do not claim to be Christians. 

On the other hand, sozo teachers and "sozoists" claim that what they are doing is of God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.  They claim that sozo is Christian, yet the followers of Bill Johnson deny Christ's divinity and hypostatic union before He was age thirty.  This disguise may prove to be particularly more enticing to others, you think? 

Which one is more dangerous, then?  The blatantly obvious cult or the disguised "Christian" cult?  "Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won't be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth" (Eph. 4:14; nlv).
 
What do you say?

"Oh, that you would bear with me in a little folly—and indeed you do bear with me. For I am jealous for you with godly jealousy. For I have betrothed you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted—you may well put up with it!" (2 Corinthians 11:1-4)

12 But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast. 13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works." (vs. 12-15)


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Happy New Year!!!

Hope you all have a wonderful new year in 2017!  That's all.  Thank you for reading!!! 

Blessings,
Sozo Research

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Sozoed from sozo? A closer look at the Greek definition and how Jude's letter says to 'sozo'...

Hello!  Please note that I have finally added a "follow" button to the right side of this page (that is, if you find these articles educational and would like to subscribe).  

The inventors of sozo have named it this, claiming they know the Greek meaning.  Whenever an individual says they know the "Greek" origin of a word, they (can) sound like they know just what they are talking about!  Perhaps this makes them look more competent and that they have done their research.  Many manipulative teachers carry out this tactic these days (claim to know the Greek language and origin of words) in order to trick their followers into thinking that they are intelligent and trustworthy.

The irony in all this is that the word sozo from the Greek origin (Strong's Concordance number 4982) literally does mean to "save, heal, preserve or rescue; to deliver out of danger and into safety" - but this is referring to saving from danger, and that includes the false, deceptive, dangerous practices like sozo and their teachers.  This is one of the dangers the Bible is warning about (see also 2 John 1:11, etc)!

Here is what Jude explains in his letter...  
"And others save [sozo 4982] with fear, pulling them out of the fire..." (Jude 1:23)
What was the purpose of the letter Jude wrote?   He was trying to warn and hopefully sozo the people from the false teachers' tactics (vs. 4).  

He urged people to "contend for the faith" (vs. 3) and warns of these "certain men" (vs. 4). 

They were men who were greedy for profit (vs. 11).  He even calls them "brute beasts" (irrational animals).  They "flattered people to gain advantage" (vs. 16).  I know that doesn't sound very nice or "loving", but he was looking out for the innocent people and their well being.  That was loving.

Jude then tells his hearers to "save (sozo) with fear, pulling them out of the fire". 
"We must watch over one another; faithfully..." (Matthew Henry's Commentary on Jude 1:23) 
Why do you think Jude, the brother of James, saw so much danger with false teachers and their practices?  Was he overreacting?  Do you think it was brave of him to speak up despite it being "negative"?  Do you see the irony in the name sozo?  Do you think this was done on purpose to confuse people into thinking that they need sozo?  Do you think certain institutions can be very tricky and deceptive?

It is ironic that the sozo teachers promise people liberty and freedom, when truly people need to be set free from this practice.
"While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage." 2 Peter 2:19
"For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works." 2 Cor. 11:13-15
 
In His Love,
BSR    


Sunday, August 21, 2016

Is the practice of sozo linked to scientology and kabbalah?

Is there a link between sozo, Scientology and Kabbalah? What do you think?  Scientologists do "auditing" while sozo people do "editing".  Are these similar practices?  Please check out the following video! 
"There are major parallels that go beyond incidental...it all comes from the same spirit...all this stuff is strongly connected." 


Interview from M'Kayla

Check out this interview!  
"This is an interview I did nearly three years ago. Many people have said it was helpful, so I wanted to reblog it. Blessings, and peace in the name of Jesus as you continue to search for His truth!" (M'Kayla)

https://mkayla.wordpress.com/2016/08/10/looky-what-just-escaped-from-the-internet-2/

Monday, July 11, 2016

NEW: A new booklet by Bill Randles called 'Beware of Bethel' examines some of Bill Johnson's unbiblical teachings

Hi there, friends!  Just wanted to let you all know there is a new booklet out by author and pastor Bill Randles.  I hope that this blesses you and may all who you share it with have a changed heart and changed mind, in Jesus's name.  Have a great week! 

Beware of Bethel: A Brief Summary of Bill Johnson's Unbiblical Teachings by Bill Randles


"And many shall follow their shameful ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of." 2 Peter 2:2

Friday, September 4, 2015

How important is 'doctrine'?


How important is doctrine to Jesus? Very! So important is right teaching to Jesus that He says anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in it does not have God. "Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take them into your house or welcome them. Anyone who welcomes them shares in their wicked work" (2 John 1:9-11).